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White Christmas and Nuclear Winter

Transcultural Dialogues

By: Hakim Hazik 

Trrrrrrn Trrrrrrrn. 

Operator: ‘Presidency; how can I help you?’ 

Caller: I wonder if I can speak to the president please. 

Operator: He is spending some quality time with his bank statements. Do you think it could wait till morning? 

Caller: I am afraid it is urgent. If it is not too inconvenient, can you please tell him that it is Videsh Mantri, Pranab Telephone Mukherjee from the South Block and I want to discuss limited nuclear war.  

Operator: Hold the line please.  

President: Hi, Telephone. What is keeping you awake at this time of night? 

Telephone: O nothing much Rashtrpati Ji, thanks for taking my call. You know this incidence in Mumbai where two hundred civilians were slaughtered? Normally this would not bother me too much and I would not let this come into inter state relations. But these Sangh Parivar fundos are baying for blood. You know we have these elections coming up next year. Signora is getting worried. I wonder if it is not too inconvenient, we could take out one or two medium sized cities on your side? 


President: Sounds like a capital idea. Don’t’ nuke Dubai though as my polo ponies and my Silver Phantom Rolls are still there. How does Quetta fetch you? It is reasonably remote, nearly a million population and a fertile breeding ground of royal pains in the backside, such as Judge Chaudhry and Lawyer Kurd.  

Telephone: This would be most helpful Rashtrapati. Is there anything I can do for your. I guess Shri Kayani would like to test his strategic assets on us? I would recommend Jharkand or Imphal. You can tell him that if he chose these targets, we would understand.  

President: That reminds me, do you still want to have Masood Azhar and Hafiz Saeed? You can have them and Maulana Lakhvi too, as long you are willing to have Attorney General Khosa and Farooq Naek as well; bloody leeches. I have never seen such incompetent ministers. I wish I had not wasted so much money on them. I wish I had hired a good teacher to give tuition to Judge Dogar’s daughter instead. Things would not have such a mess. Are you interested in giving tuition in English? You could have me and Gilani Sahib as students, in addition to Ms Dogar.  

Telephone: This sounds like a most satisfactory arrangement. We would have 3 to 4 million dead, reasonably equally balanced on two sides. There would be radioactive poisoning for a few million years and deformed children for a few thousand years. But roused passions would cool down on both sides and we could get on and normalise relations between the two countries.  

President: Said like a true statesman. If you are coming to Islamabad any time soon, please drop in for a Sindhi Biryani. Before I forget, I should mention that I have been getting hoax calls from a chap claiming to be Telephone Mukherjee. Please be vigilant. You can’t be too careful these days. The whole world is looking up to us prevent accidental thermonuclear annihilation of human race.  

Telephone: Well said. I will watch out for hoax telephone calls.     


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