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For Whom the Bell Tolls

Letter to Brother Abdullah


By: Hakim Hazik


Jalalatul Mulk,


No man is island, entire unto itself. Eery man is a peninsula, none as holy as yours.  


Your Majesty,


Brother AZ is on the peninsula currently undergoing his ablutions on the periphery. Very soon he may join you in the Saroor Palace where your brother and your bhabi spent the best years of our life. Time and tide wait for no one. The Grim Reaper and General Pasha give no quarter. 


I am wearing sack cloth and mourning for sister BB and brother AZ. Shahbaz Sahib is wearing khaki and singing national anthem. This is not a victory Your Majesty.  Shahbaz Sahib does not understand. The powdered wig is no substitute for the  peaked cap. The court sceptre is no better than the military mace. 


Shahbaz Sahib will find out. Imran Khan will find out. 


How the NATO tanker burns. It warms the cockles of your heart. The driver gets the bullet in the head. The major gets the loot and the insurance money. The general gets the allotment and the certificate of patriotism. Pak sar zameen shad bad. 


The country needs renewal and rebirth. Yours Truly is a born again democrat, just as the Field Marshal is a born again patriot and Mansoor Ijaz is a born again rat. Nobody beats bother Pasha though, in the cycle of rebirth. He flits from capital to capital, harvesting the fruits of his labours and appraising blackberries on offer. He is the Mayor of DC and Emir of Waziristan. He is the Viceroy of Kabul and the Sardar of Sarai Alamgir. 


Abbaji used to say that everything has got a price. He offered General Tinpot a BMW. He should have offered him a drink of arsenic. That would have saved the country at least a decade of lost opportunity. Ittefaq would own Land Rover, rather than losing it to Tata. Strip him of his uniform and he is a clown. 


Come to think of it, who isn’t? I know Mirza Sahib was kind to me and kept the riyal pipeline open, so kindly started by Your Majesty. During the 91 war, he wanted to fight with Saddam Hussein. If he had his way, Your Brother would have his hanging filmed on the mobile phone and broadcast on YouTube. Allah have mercy on us all. 


Not to forget the hero of Jalalabad. He talks of Bismarck, Shanghai Club and Mullah Omar and wants to be the king of Turkmenistan and the conquerer of Delhi on Mullah Sahib’s donkey cart. With such strategists, Your Majesty, who needs the IMF or the World Bank? We can make our own way in the world. 


I know that people are flocking to Imran Khan. The hired pens and microphones can hardly conceal their glee. I must say to these brothers, not to be too misty eyed. What starts with the national anthem, ends with the national anthem. The bell does not toll for Brother AZ. It tolls for all of us. 


Your Brother in Islam,

MMN Sharif, 









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