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Geo News has been taken off air, as the UAE Government has cut their satellite uplink facilities, reportedly under pressure from Musharraf regime. This happens when Mr. Negroponte is visiting Pakistan, to prevent the Empire from unravelling. So far the American efforts have been of damage control. They have given statements of mild rebuke to Musharraf, pussyfooting around the issue of restoration of judiciary, and only emphasizing the need to hold early elections.

    Not that one could attach any high hopes to the Bush Administration to support the freedom of media. The recent record of Bush Administration in trying to suppress unwelcome news is worth reviewing. A US missile destroyed the offices of Al-Jazeera TV in Kabul in November 2001; (Guardian). In April 2003, US bombing of Al Jazeera offices in Baghdad killed, their reporter cameraman, Tariq Ayoub. (Reporters Without Borders)


Tariq Ayoub

Al Jazeera journalist Sami Al Haj , was arrested in Pakistan in 2001, and is being held in Guantanamo. Some officials in the UK have gone on trial for leaking a memo of a meeting between Bush and Blair, in 2004, which discussed bombing of Al Jazeera Headquarters in Doha.

Mr Negroponte will be speaking with a forked tongue if he does not clearly and unequivocally demand Musharraf to back down from his garrotting of media, and purge of judiciary. It is worth noting that currently the most popular Pakistani politician, Nawaz Sharif is in illegal Saudi custody. He was abducted from Pakistan, as a result of collusion between Musharraf and King Abdullah, the two American satraps. The UAE government has made a mistake by bowing to Musharraf's pressure. They should have learnt from Qatari Government who did not genuflect to Mr. Rumsfeldt, when he wanted them to clamp down on Al Jazeera.

It is a lost battle for Musharraf. Pakistan has changed since he took over. With 7 million expats, Pakistan’s economy, communications and culture are hardwired into the global systems. It is impossible to suppress independent TV.Geo will be a mighty foe for Musharraf. This media conglomerate makes its owners the second richest family in Pakistan. Access to communication technology has become so easy that it is not difficult set up a system to broadcast via satellite. In the UK, as elsewhere, satellite channels for Pakistanis are mushrooming. People are logging on to Geo on the internet. It should be remembered that the internet was initially used by the US military because it could survive a nuclear strike. Neanderthals like Musharraf are trying to destroy the indestructible i.e. modernity. It is for this reason that they won’t succeed.  


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