By  Mowahid Hussain Shah

February 17, 2017

Embarrassment to America

No foe of America could have imagined the huge damage inflicted on America by an American President. In the first fortnight of his presidency, Trump – through his Twitter tantrums – has revealed himself as a puerile adolescent with poor impulse control.
Governor Jay Inslee of Washington State put it explicitly: “The way he is reacting is not as an American President who understands American democracy. He is reacting in a very juvenile and immature way.”
Trump’s hastily drafted and rushed executive order of January 27, imposing a travel ban on 7 predominantly Muslim countries, is running counter to the US Constitution’s safeguards regarding equal protection, due process, and religion-based discrimination. It is a despotic move unbefitting a democracy, the cumulative effect of which has the potential of sparking a constitutional crisis.
The courts have refused to uphold this arbitrary order. The legal saga can reach all the way to the US Supreme Court, where the matter is complicated as the Court is one judge short of its regular 9-member panel. It could throw a spanner into the confirmation of Trump’s nominee, Neil Gorsuch.
Trump has not helped matters by pouring scorn on a member of the judiciary who ruled adversely against the ban, calling him a “so-called judge.” It has led opponents to call Trump a “so-called President.” It is quite unusual for the head of the Executive Branch to personally attack a serving judge of the Judicial Branch.
What the Trump administration didn’t anticipate was widespread outrage and demonstrations against the travel ban, whose inhumane and cruel consequences were played out on TV screens, with images of misery and chaos at airports, and the vivid spectacle of America breaking its bond by revoking legitimately-issued visas.
Are these the first palpable signs expediting America’s slide in the global arena?
Muslims are not alone – significant segments of US civil society have rallied in solidarity and protest. Hats off to acting US Attorney General Sally Yates who declined to be a doormat to Trump’s orders. It’s an instructive teaching moment for much of Pakistan’s officialdom who, in their sycophantic over-zeal, vie with one another to placate their bosses, even to the extent of endorsing unlawful orders.
Simply put, Trump rose to power riding a wave of white tribalism – a primeval reaction to seeing a black family ensconced in the White House for 8 years. Demographics prevent America from being remolded into a predominantly white Christian hegemony.
Already, Trump’s authoritarian actions are being widely perceived as a national embarrassment. He has picked no-win battles with the media and the judiciary.
Abraham Lincoln, in his first Inaugural Address in 1861, defined leadership as appealing to “the better angels of our nature.” Trump, instead, is appealing to the basest instincts of hate, fear, and rage.
Gone largely unnoticed during this affront to the Muslim world has been the shameful silence amongst the majority of Muslim governing elites and the OIC.
Trump talks of making America safe and great. Instead, he is making it insecure and small-hearted. In doing so, he himself may be the biggest national security risk for the United States of America.






Election 2004: Decisive but Divisive

Muslim Youth & Kashmir in America

The Big Picture: Wealth without Vision

Oxygen to Global Unrest

Punishing the Punctual

Change without Change

Don’t Be Weak

Passionate Attachment

The Confidence of Youth

The Other Side of Democracy

Campaign of Defamation

Pakistani Women & the Legal Profession

A Pakistani Journey

Farewell to Fazal

Mukhtaran and Beyond

Revamping the OIC

7/7 & After

Nuclear Double-Standard

Return to Racism

Hollywood – The Unofficial Media

The Sole Superpower

The UN at 60

A Slow Motion World War?

Elite vs. Street

Iqbal Today

Macedonia to Multan

Defending our Own

2006 & Maulana Zafar Ali Khan

Error against Terror

The Limits of Power

Cultural Weaknesses

Aggressive at Home, Submissive Abroad

Global Storm

The Farce of Free Expression

The Changing Mood

Condi & India


Looking inward


A Tale of Two Presidents

Close to Home

Flashpoint Kashmir

The Spreading Rage

Confronting Adversity

The Illusion of International Law

Other Side of Extremism

Five Years after 9/11

The Educated Ignorant

The Decline of Humor


Six Years of Insanity

The War Not Being Fought

Munir Niazi

Compliance & Defiance



The Goddess of Wealth

The Meaning of Moderation

The Tora Bora of Fear

Clash of Civility

The Early Race

Challenge & Response

Will & Skill


Movie-Media and Pakistan

Hug with a Thug

Quest for Integrity



Bringing Back the Past

Stuck in Iraq

Islam, Science and the West

Turmoil over Turkey

Leaders versus Leadership

Might Does Not Make Right

Kursi First

Vision & Will

Battle of the Billionaires

Assassination Alley

Extremism and Change

Rosy Expectations

Short-Term Gain, Long-Term Pain

Not Winning

Beyond Baghdad: Five Years after

The Hijab of Democracy

Hate, Fear & Hope

Weapon of Words

Hide N’ Seek

Yanking in the UN

Obama’s Breakthrough

Let Lahore Be Lahore

National Mood & Sports

Flirting with Fire

Trips Abroad

Georgia on the Mind

Duel for the White House

Zia to Zardari

Palestine: Avoiding the Unavoidable 

Not Working 

In the Ring 

Obama’s America

Smiles & Dreams

Quiet Deeds of Good

Crime and Indifference

Journey of Understanding


Terror via Counter-Terrorism

Umpires or Vampires?

The Long Road

Yesterday’s Reminder

Appeasement and the Real Threat

Israel’s Washington Agenda

New Challenges

Cairo and Beyond

Re-fighting Old Battles

America ’s Super Villains

Activism in America

Style without Substance

Overcoming Barriers

Ashes to Afghanistan

The Looming Change

Fear and Possibilities

What Is Not Debated 

Hired Guns

Rampage at Fort Hood

Manmohan in Washington

The Long Duel

Green Nukes

Vision and Division

Avoiding Why

Striving to Matter


Anxiety and Opportunity

Putting Iraq in America

The Right Strategy

Looking Beyond

Rot at the Top

Strategic Folly

Daring & Caring

Over-Stepping on Turkey

Sudan : Perils of Provincialism

Old Fears, New Target

Europe ’s Stain

The US-Pakistan Enigma

The Status Quo Is Unacceptable

9 Years after 9/11

License to Steal

US Muslims at the Crossroads

Tumor of Terror

An Arab Voice

Disastrous Decisions

Double Game

Sticky Wiki

What Quaid Was Not

Money Conspiracy

Pharaohs & Pirates

Greed and Cricket

Change & Challenge  

Forty Years after 1971

Abandoning Our Own

Rewarding Failure

Osama and Obama

Tsunami of Tolerance

Representation and Presentation

Meek and Weak

Change or the Same?

No Easy Exit

Nation to Non-Nation

10 Years after 9/11

Shining India?

Big Power, Small Politics

Rule of the Gun

Proxy of the Powerful

Fight for Fairness

Republican Race

Actors or Directors

Speaking out

Professional Sycophants

More Provinces?

Too Much Information

Soft Separation

Soft Poison

Unemployment & Over-Population

Seize the Day

The Arab Awakening

Ben Bella

At University of Gujrat

Good People Behaving Badly

Playing Over-Smart

Do Less

Resisting the Resistible

Performance, Not PR

Home-grown Havoc

Salutation to the 65 th Year

Plague of Provincialism

USA Elections 2012


Fight or Flight

Rift and Drift

Obama II

Me and We

Small Role or Small Actors?

On Losing

Who Will Guard the Guards?

Loyal to Their Loot

Prevail or Fail

Perceptions and Reality

Toll of Occupation

Re-think, Re-examine, and Self-correct 

The Washington Tribe

Voice and Vision

Moral Slump

Wall of Illusion

Under One Banner

Bitter Harvest

Gallows and the Throne

Scent of Power

At a Standstill

Leaders and Leadership

The Deadline

Fighting Darkness

Distant Connections

Governance: The Long View

Discussion in DC

Darkness in the Mind

Killing Kennedy and Liaquat Ali

Yahya Khan Speaks on 1971

Quaid & Xmas in Washington

150 Years of FC College

Tyranny of Money

50 Years of Ali

A Dose of Truth

Little Guy, Big Impact

A Reassessment in Washington

Crimea & Kashmir

Democracy or Oligarchy?

Afghan Elites: Blaming Pakistan

Pitfalls of Intervention

Arabs in America

Never Give up

German Journey

Tyranny of Today

Manipulating Language

March & Match


Out of Darkness

Modi in America

Awareness or Fairness?

Mideast Maze

Easy Scapegoats

Freedom to Insult

Journey of Recovery

Mental Colonialism

Letters from a Grandfather

Power Imbalance

Discord and Division

Colloquium at Capitol Hill

Washington Lauds Gharib Nawaz

Balkan Lessons

Pivot from the Mideast

American Campus & Mideast Turmoil

Muslim Father; Two Americans

Challenging Fear

Victim Mentality

X & Ali

Fake Democracy?

Irresponsible Passivity

Erosion of Ethics

Dragon of Hate

Extreme in the Mainstream

Ugly Times

Pakistani Summer in England

Speaking Haq

At the Oval

Britain Beware

East in West

Trump Turmoil

Tiny Nation, Towering Figure

Realities: 2016

End of an Innings




Editor: Akhtar M. Faruqui
2004 . All Rights Reserved.