Playing with Fire: Pakistan at War with Itself (2020)

Playing with Fire Pakistan at War with Itself A volatile nation at the heart of major cultural political and religious conflicts in the world today Pakistan commands our attention Yet than six decades after the country s founding as a Muslim d
  • Title: Playing with Fire: Pakistan at War with Itself
  • Author: Pamela Constable
  • ISBN: 9781400069118
  • Page: 223
  • Format: Hardcover
  • A volatile nation at the heart of major cultural, political, and religious conflicts in the world today, Pakistan commands our attention Yet than six decades after the country s founding as a Muslim democracy, it continues to struggle over its basic identity, alliances, and direction In Playing with Fire, acclaimed journalist Pamela Constable peels back layers of coA volatile nation at the heart of major cultural, political, and religious conflicts in the world today, Pakistan commands our attention Yet than six decades after the country s founding as a Muslim democracy, it continues to struggle over its basic identity, alliances, and direction In Playing with Fire, acclaimed journalist Pamela Constable peels back layers of contradiction and confusion to reveal the true face of modern Pakistan.In this richly reported and movingly written chronicle, Constable takes us on a panoramic tour of contemporary Pakistan, exploring the fears and frustrations, dreams and beliefs, that animate the lives of ordinary citizens in this nuclear armed nation of 170 million From the opulent, insular salons of the elite to the brick quarries where soot covered workers sell their kidneys to get out of debt, this is a haunting portrait of a society riven by inequality and corruption, and increasingly divided by competing versions of Islam.Beneath the fa ade of democracy in Pakistan, Constable reveals the formidable hold of its business, bureaucratic, and military elites including the country s powerful spy agency, the ISI This is a society where the majority of the population feels powerless, and radical Islamist groups stoke popular resentment to recruit shock troops for global jihad Writing with an uncommon ear for the nuances of this conflicted culture, Constable explores the extent to which faith permeates every level of Pakistani society and the ambivalence many Muslims feel about the role it should play in the life of the nation.Both an empathic and alarming look inside one of the world s most violent and vexing countries, Playing with Fire is essential reading for anyone wishing to understand modern Pakistan and its momentous role on today s global stage.
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    One Reply to “Playing with Fire: Pakistan at War with Itself”

    1. There are dozens of books about Pakistan on the market today Most of them are fairly limited in the scope of their efforts to describe this huge multi faceted nation in the throes of imminent self destruction Ms Constable s work knows no such boundaries The author has had close personal contact with the richest Pakistani families and the poorest rejects of this feudal society.While reading her book, it does not take much imagination to smell the rot and corruption that permeates the government, [...]

    2. Read this for a class on Pakistan I gained new insight into the Mid East in general and Pakistan in particular I don t know if I would have picked it up without having to read for class, but I m glad it was one I had to read Lots of good information along with what I got from the class and heart breaking, too I can t say if the author is biased or not it s hard to tell when it s something that was just assigned but she did spend a lot of time there seemed to have access to lots of different kind [...]

    3. To me Pakistan is a confusing country Sixty years ago Pakistan was founded as an Islamic Democracy, but it has been ruled off and on by military dictators As I hear news from Pakistan I have a hard time putting it in context This book helps from the assault on the Red Mosque the assasination of Benazir Bhutto the lawyer s revolution both getting the head of the Supreme Court re instated and pressuring the military dictator, Musharaff to step down US drone attacks bombing of shrines the military [...]

    4. The main thesis of this book is that Pakistan has a schitzophrenic relationship with Islam, where it both nurtures and condemns Islamic extremism Terrorist attacks within Pakistan are blamed on mysterious foreign forces India CIA The Jews because fellow Muslims could never do that to their own people Groups respinsible for foreign attacks are encouraged in some cases and excused in others.I found myself reaching for this book over and over again.Pakistan is a compelling country The parts on terr [...]

    5. Not without flaws, but tremendously helpful in understanding how Pakistan does and doesn t function and why it is the way it is Short version misplaced priorities have perpetuated feudalism, tribalism, and militarism at the expense of democratic institutions and social justice Possibilities for positive change exist, but Pakistan and its citizens must overcome decades of conspiratorial thinking, perceived victimization, tribalism, and corruption and decide if they want to be a feudal, tribal, sh [...]

    6. This book examined a lot of different aspects that affect the state of Pakistan and its communities, such as religion, economic prostitutes, democracy, corruption, cultural norms, radical Islam, charities, public opinions and religion I though it was very thorough and well researched but because of that I sometimes lost interest however it had very many part that I did enjoy and kept my attention The best explanation of the current state of Pakistan comes from a quote by Mohammed Allama Iqbal, a [...]

    7. A few chapters into this book and I hated it I thought I was being too critical and forced myself to read it all the way to the end The author just seems to be barfing out information gathered from various sources For someone who follows Pakistani and South Asian politics closely, I found this book to be an extension of news articles from Pakistan over the years The overflow of at times biased information is capable of leaving the reader frustrated and the author provides a mediocre analysis whi [...]

    8. I am very disappointed in this book It is very offensive to Muslims and clearly implies that the Koran is behind the terrorism in Pakistan The author even stresses that a few kids did not learn anything from the Koran For a brown graduate and a journalist, this makes me feel very wary about the kind of books being published these days I feel sorry that people who don t know better would pick up this book and be brainwashed by this author who has no respect for journalism and did not deserve the [...]

    9. A very informative, but frustrating book to read I saw many parallels with where our own democracy and public mindset are going astray I only hope that, one day, all people will truelly embrace love, compassion, equality and tolerance and release all the fear, hate, and control that divides us.Just Imagine But, we can t change other people, we can only change ourself and spread the love.

    10. A fascinating, insightful and troubling chroinicle of contemporary Pakistan Current up to and including the killing of Osama bin Laden, Constable covers a wide range of subjects systemic corruption in business and government, economic disparities, the military as national institution, rising influence of the Taliban in rural areas, the struggle between fundamentalist and moderate Islam, the ongoing repression of women and religious minorities, tribal society traditions, and much .

    11. If you think Afghanistan is rather a mess, you mightwant a stiff drink to help you read this one This bookis comprehensive culture, class system, religion and politics areall covered with many examples and interviews with a broadrange of Pakistanis Very informative But does want to make you want to scream.

    12. I had heard this author on a TV program probably QA and was so enthralled with her topic I wanted to read the book I know so little about Pakistan it was hard for me to follow at times but I learned so much about Pakistan s political history The book definitely whetted my appetite to learn .

    13. I was impressed when I heard the author speak in an event sponsored by World Affairs Council so I got the book I felt it did a good job introducing me to the complexities of life and politics in Pakistan.

    14. This is a deeply troubling book about the many ways that Pakistan is a dysfunctional society Constable describes a country beset by jihadist insurrections, ruled over by a corrupt, out of touch elite, and lurching from one crisis to the next.

    15. if you ve been following news out of Pakistan beyond the most superficial level, this book won t really add anything

    16. An insightful and very readable portrayal of the current state of Pakistan I am always drawn to the strength of the imagery in Pam s writing.

    17. This is an interesting book I know very little about Pakistan at all and sometimes found it hard to follow Overall it was an interesting introduction to a subject I d like to learn about.

    18. Excellent book describing the endemic corruption and cultural reasons that Pakistan is a fake state as the authour calls it I learned a lot from this well written and well researched book

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