Diplomatic/military relations between the US and Pakistan since September 11, 2001

The United States was one of the first nations to establish relations with Pakistan after they achieved independence from the British Raj in 1947. Since then, the relationship has had its ups and downs, but the September 11 attacks sparked significant changes. Pakistan, which neighbors Afghanistan and provided conveniently placed US military locations, became a key American ally as President Bush initiated the war on terror. Essentially, Pakistan was a necessary ally for the US’s terrorism concerns. Pakistan also benefited in ways such as US financial and military assistance as well as the US lifting sanctions on their nuclear weapons program. The relationship is largely driven because the United States is able to use its economic power to incentivise Pakistani aid. Perhaps more importantly, President Bush indirectly threatened to treat Pakistan like the terrorists if they didn’t cooperate. This is encapsulated in his famous quote, “either you are with us, or you are with the terrorists” (Collins, p. 2-6).

While Pakistan provided logistical resources and captured terrorists, the alliance created after the September 11 attacks has not been without conflict. A few years after the September 11 attacks, both countries grew frustrated with each other. The US suspected Pakistan of hiding terrorists while some Pakistanis did not feel as if the US was sufficiently protecting them from Afghanistan. In 2011, the successful assassination of Osama Bin Laden occurred in Pakistan, which made the US governemnt and public skeptical of Pakistani intentions (Goldberg and Ambinder, 2018). On the other hand, Pakistanis were upset that America made this attack without notifying them.

The Reluctant Fundamentalist was published in 2007, and polls from that year show that Pakistan was one of the most anti-American countries in the world. This was at least in part due to public opinion in Pakistan that America was manipulating them and directing their destiny (Hathaway, p. 11, 21). Further, at this time period, data suggests that although Pakistanis largely rejected terrorism, they feared the US and generally did not support the war on terror (Wike, 2007). From the perspective of Pakistan’s citizens, aiding the war on terror came at the cost of lives and some aspects of their domestic security. Also in 2007, polls in the US showed that 64% of Americans had an unfavorable opinion of Pakistan (Newport, 2007). This likely influenced treatment of Pakistani Americans in the US.

 

Bibliography 

Collins, Liam. “United States diplomacy with Pakistan following 9/11.” A case study in coercive diplomacy. WWS 547 (2008).

Goldberg, Jeffrey, and Marc Ambinder. “The Ally From Hell.” The Atlantic, Atlantic Media Company, 2 Jan. 2018, www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2011/12/the-ally-from-hell/308730/.

Hathaway, Robert M. “Leverage and largesse: Pakistan’s post-9/11 partnership with America.” Contemporary South Asia 16.1 (2008): 11-24.

Newport, Frank. “Americans’ Attitudes Toward Pakistan Largely Negative.” Gallup.com, Gallup, 5 Mar. 2020, news.gallup.com/poll/102640/americans-attitudes-toward-pakistan-largely-negative.aspx.

Wike, Richard. “Musharraf’s Support Shrinks, Even As More Pakistanis Reject Terrorism… and the U.S.” Pew Research Center’s Global Attitudes Project, Pew Research Center, 30 Dec. 2019, www.pewresearch.org/global/2007/08/08/pakistanis-increasingly-reject-terrorism-and-the-us/.

Origin and Impact of the Indian Caste System

Quick note from Caroline: this is a great big-picture overview of the history of caste in India. I want to point out that the word “Aryan” as used here is not what the Nazis meant. The Nazis borrowed a lot of their language and symbols about race superiority from 19th-century pseudoscience about White northern Europeans moving across Eurasia and founding all the great civilizations. This is nonsense. The origin of the term Aryan in ancient Hindu texts (ca. 1500-500BCE) is uncertain, but in this context, it refers to the people who dominated what is now northern India and Pakistan. Ethnic, cultural, and linguistic differences are also tied to caste in India historically and today…but not Nazis. Now, back to Xixiang’s summary.

The caste system (tied to Hinduism) has a long history and there has long been contentious in the origin of this system. In recent years, the most accepted explanation of the origin is related to the Aryans since many pieces of research support this hypothesis. For example, Dr. Sharma’s team proved that there exists a strong relationship between the status in the caste system and a special chromosome which is the trait of the Aryans (Sharma, et al. 50).

Following the hypothesis related to the Aryans, around 1500 BC, the Aryans arrived at the Indian subcontinent and they conquered the local Indian tribes with their advanced technology (Deshpande, 19). To classify their ruler’s status from those local people, the class division between the conqueror and the conquered has been created. That is the prototype of the caste system. Later, as the interaction between the Aryan conquerors and the indigenous people, the social hierarchy has developed from two to four. The Aryans were divided into three levels internally: the Hindu priestly aristocracy – Brahmins; the military chiefs – Kshatriyas; and the free civilians engaged in various productive labor – Vaishyas. On the other hand, most local people are classified into the lowest level, which is Shudras who need to subordinate to Vaishyas, Kshatriyas, and Brahmins. Besides, some of the local people have been excluded from this system, and they are called Dalits or Untouchables who are in the lowest social status and being most discriminated against (Deshpande, 22). The graph below is a general presentation of the caste system hierarchy.

The Caste System Explained

To secure their status, the Aryans dominator set up several restrictions. The most essential one is that your caste is only determined by your parents. Also, the marriage across the caste is prohibited. Besides, people from low status are prohibited to pursue a high-level career (Mason, 648). For example, if you are born as a Shudras or Dalits, you can only do some dirty physical work since decent jobs are reserved for Brahmins, Kshatriyas, and Vaishyas. Combining those restrictions, we can find that there doesn’t exist any chance for the people from Shudras and Dalits to gain a better life in such social hierarchy.

Nowadays, with the help of the Indian government, the effect of the caste system has already been much less than before. In the rural area, movement out of caste specializing occupations and access to resources is still difficult, but in urban areas, people can pursue their desired job without considering their caste (Deshpande, 31). As time goes by, I believe that the impact of caste would keep decreasing, and Indian society would become more equal.

 

Work Cited

Deshpande, Manali S. “History of the Indian Caste System and Its Impact on India Today.” DigitalCommons@CalPoly, Dec. 2010, digitalcommons.calpoly.edu/socssp/44/.

Joe, and Thomas DeMichele. “The Caste System Explained.” Fact/Myth, 27 Nov. 2018, factmyth.com/the-caste-system-explained/.

Mason Olcott. “The Caste System of India.” American Sociological Review, vol. 9, no. 6, 1944, pp. 648–657. JSTOR, www.jstor.org/stable/2085128. Accessed 16 Mar. 2020.

Sharma, S., Rai, E., Sharma, P. et al. The Indian origin of paternal haplogroup R1a1* substantiates the autochthonous origin of Brahmins and the caste system. J Hum Genet 5447–55 (2009). https://doi.org/10.1038/jhg.2008.2

History of Partition between India and Pakistan

1947, August 15th, British India was split into two different independent nation states. It consisted of Hindu majority India and Muslim majority Pakistan. The main vehicle for the Partition was the Indian National Congress with the best-known leaders including Mahatma Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru. Before the 1940s, it had long argued for a single state with a strong centre. Unfortunately, other organizations supporting minorities felt their plan seemed sketchy. Because of Hindus taking up 80% of the population, people believed it could protect the political dominance. The situation sparked one the biggest migrations in human history. Tons of people and families traveled, and some did not make it. On the India side, societies that had lived there for years were suddenly fighting each other due to the shocking new reality of local violence. It was a mutual massacre that was unique and new. Additionally, there became “massacres, arson, forced conversions, mass abductions, and savage sexual violence. Some seventy-five thousand women were raped, and many of them were then disfigured or dismembered” (Dalrymple 2015). Many British soldiers and journalists who had experience with the Nazi death camps explained that the partition was worse – including “pregnant women had their breasts cut off and babies hacked out of their bellies; infants were found literally roasted on spits” (Dalrymple 2015). However, there was no comparison in these two distinct events.

By 1948, the journey came to a termination. Ayesha Jalal writes that it was a “defining moment that is neither beginning nor end, partition continues to influence how the peoples and states of postcolonial South Asia envisage their past, present and future” (Dalrymple 2015). This shows the suffering of so many people and families who have had to discover ways to understand background due to unforeseen acts by the partition. People are and were strong headed about their beliefs and would fight for that if they felt threatened and by any means necessary. “Many of the people concerned were very deeply attached not just to religious identity, but to territory” (The Conversation 2017). Additionally, both states had difficulty handling the needs and recovering post refugees from what had arisen. By the 1960s families were still migrating. Today, India and Pakistan are still trying to figure solutions out. This was by far one the most devastating times of history for South Asia.

 

William, Dalrymple. (2015, June 15). The violent legacy of Indian Partition. Retrieved from https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2015/06/29/the-great-divide-books-dalrymple

Pant, Harsh. M. (2016, September 26). Kashmir flare-up puts India under new pressure to deal with Pakistan. Retrieved from http://theconversation.com/how-the-partition-of-india-happened-and-why-its-effects-are-still-felt-today-81766

Freedom of Expression and Discrimination – should it be banned?

By Yan Chen

In January 27, 2020, Jyllands-Posten, a Danish newspaper, had published a cartoon graphic of the Chinese flag with five coronavirus particles photoshopped over the five stars. The author Niels Bo Bojesen played a malicious joke on the current serious and sorrowful situation in China and had hurt the feeling of all Chinese people who was suffering now.

When Chinese government has demanded an apology from the newspaper and the illustrator, they refused to apologize for it because they thought that was their freedom of expression in Denmark. Indeed, they even did not think they make anything wrong, and in their culture, making fun of a nation flag is permissible. Additionally, many Danish people kept spreading out some online memes that critique Chinese people and government as vulnerable.

In my perspective, I can never believe that anyone in the world is able to mock others due to his freedom of expression. I think this behavior has already crossed the bottom line of ethical boundary of free speech. The virus had killed thousands of people in the world, whereas the newspaper still made fun of that without sympathy, which is definitely immoral and inhuman. I think this is systemic injustice, because the power of freedom cannot become anyone’s excuse to bully others.

Simone de Beauvoir introduces the concept of the Other in her work “The second sex”. In this case, I think people from China suffering the virus were categorized as the Other by Danish people who were making fun of that. In this semester, many literary works described the experience of prejudice which I think has similarity to this situation. For instance, Ortiz Cofer wrote in her novel “The Story of My Body” that she experienced racial prejudice many times because she was thought as the Other by those native persons.

 

https://www.news.com.au/finance/business/media/china-demands-apology-over-insulting-coronavirus-cartoon/news-story/8c9ce8b86a780dc1995cf833ba3124e8

Income inequality between races

By Bo Liu


African Americans systematically have less wealth than whites. Tables 1 and 2 summarize several wealth measures by race including median wealth, average wealth, and the share of households with no or negative wealth. The median black wealth in 2016 amounted to $13,460—less than 10 percent of the $142,180 median white wealth. (see Table 1) The average black wealth was 11 percent that of whites, and slightly more than one-quarter of blacks had no or negative wealth, compared with only a little more than 10 percent of whites. (see Table 2)

The black-white wealth gap has persisted for decades. As shown in Table 1, the median wealth for black non-retirees over the age of 25 has never amounted to more than 19 percent of the median wealth of similarly situated whites since 1989. Additionally, the ratio of average black wealth to average white wealth never exceeded 21.6 percent in 1992. Roughly speaking, the best-case scenario for the past 30 years occurred when blacks had about one-sixth the median wealth of whites in 1998.
These above two tables along with table interpretation somewhat reflects the income and wealth inequality as one form of systemic injustice among African-American. wealth in this country is unequally distributed by race—and particularly between white and black households. African American families have a fraction of the wealth of white families, leaving them more economically insecure and with far fewer opportunities for economic mobility. As this table shows, even after considering positive factors such as increased education levels, African Americans have less wealth than whites. Less wealth translates into fewer opportunities for upward mobility and is compounded by lower income levels and fewer chances to build wealth or pass accumulated wealth down to future generations.

Now, the historical circumstances leading to the sharp systemic wealth and income inequality between white people and black people originated from white wealth accumulated from the trading and enslavement of Africans, and from the taking of black-owned property to pass down to white children and grandchildren. Government policies such as racial housing covenants, redlining, financial handouts for white war veterans, and highway expansions provided additional wealth expansion for white families while providing net-zero wealth opportunities for African Americans.

Citations
Hanks, Angela, et al. “Systematic Inequality.” Center for American Progress, www.americanprogress.org/issues/race/reports/2018/02/21/447051/systematic-inequality/.

Chinese/Asian People Become the Target of Discrimination in Coronavirus Outbreak

By Jiali Sun

Due to the rising outbreak of Coronavirus around the world, there has been increasing cases of prejudice, xenophobia, discrimination, violence, and racism against Chinese people, and even Asian people, particularly in Europe, the United State and the Asia-Pacific region. What is worse, such discrimination not only happens on the Internet, some cases even involve violence in public as well as well-known news media.

On Feb.3, The Wall Street Journal published an article titled “China is the Real Sick Man of Asia”, which has aroused the uproar among Chinese people and overseas Chinese since it deploys derogatory reference to China. The phrase “sick man of Asia” has been historically used to perpetuate the stereotype that Chinese people were disease-ridden and unclean. The expression is also resented by the Chinese, whose country has suffered from past foreign invasion. Such reference is thought to be instigating panic, skewing public opinion, and deepening discrimination. The likely consequence is rising racism against Chinese and other Asian ethnicities. Therefore, many Chinese people were petitioning to bring down the article or rectify the title in recent days.

https://www.wsj.com/articles/china-is-the-real-sick-man-of-asia-11580773677

As one of the most well-known international newspaper, WSJ’s improper choice of such an controversial headline at such a sensitive time of health crisis in China’s history demonstrates the author’s/editor’s lack of empathy and compassion, and will consequently harm the fame of WSJ as well as offend a sizable community in the US. All in all, there is an urgent need for WSJ to retract the headline, make claims and apologize.

Face masks are commonly worn by Asians to protect against germs or prevent any pathogen from spreading. However because of irrational fears over coronavirus, overseas Chinese have been dealing with horror stories about mask-wearing people being verbally and even physically attacked by strangers. In one such assault, videotaped by a passenger at a subway station in Manhattan’s Chinatown, a mask-wearing woman was pummeled and kicked by a man. The witness told the media that the attacker called the woman a “diseased bitch.”

https://nypost.com/2020/02/05/woman-wearing-face-mask-attacked-in-possible-coronavirus-hate-crime/

I think such racial discrimination or anti-Chinese sentiment is a kind of systematic injustice since those discriminate and biased people irrationally abused innocent Chinese and Asian people who just want to protect themselves from being infected by the virus. As it is said by de Beauvoir in her Second Sex, “it is that no group sets itself up as the One without at once setting up the Other against itself”. However, the Coronavirus outbreak is the issue of the whole world combatting with the virus rather than confronting certain racial groups. Those discriminating cases will not only arouse a higher level of social unrest and fear but also increase the work burden of public police and workers. There is still an urgent need for more strict government regulations as well as scrutiny on the swirling misinformation and viral rumors and racist cases.

Short North Food Hall Dress Code

By Jordyn Zody

This past January, the Short North Food Hall posted a dress code list that discriminated against African Americans. The dress code restricted items such as sagging pants and flat billed hats. It also did not allow for athletic clothes, sandals, and a long list of other items to be worn into the bar. Food Hall did come out and apologize for the dress code and have taken the majority of it back, but it exploded onto social media sites and had many people upset about it. While having a dress code for health or safety reasons is understandable (for example, not allowing backpacks to be brought into the bar) their entire dress code is unreasonable. However, Food Hall specifically not allowing flat billed hats while allowing regular baseball caps is unnecessary. Also, baggy clothing would be a subjective call for the bouncer and there is no clear definition on what would be acceptable and would likely lead to discrimination. Even though the dress code listed specific items, it was not clear on what would be allowed and where the line would be drawn for items such as baggy clothes.

 

This relates to the Civil Rights Movement and demonstrates that while we may all appear to have equal rights there are still numerous cases of injustice. We are still dealing with racial discrimination in America today. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. worked with the Southern Christian Leadership Conference and fought discrimination with nonviolent and economic methods. They did things such as the Montgomery Bus Boycott in 1956.

 

America has come a long way, but racial discrimination is still present today. Food Hall’s dress code is not acceptable, and we should not tolerate or support actions like this.

 

The following is a link to a news story regarding Food Hall’s dress code sign: https://www.10tv.com/article/organization-says-dress-code-sign-outside-short-north-bar-was-discriminatory-2020-feb

 

The Punishing Price of Plan B

By Mahima Vemuganti

Within this past week, I witnessed two of my close friends purchase Plan B.  As they were checking out, I couldn’t help but glance at the price tag- $49.99 before tax. As I was accompanying my friends, I couldn’t help but think back to my friend in high school who had to gamble with potential pregnancy because she couldn’t afford Plan B. 3 weeks later, we found out she was pregnant. My friends in college were able to handle a potentially disruptive situation because they had the privilege to afford to do so, unlike my friend back in high school. Plan B is a good example of systemic injustice because not everyone has equal means to obtain it.

The issue behind Plan B is similar to the injustices individuals experienced during the Civil Rights Movement. Minority groups are placed at a disadvantage from equal opportunity. From police brutality to the sanctions behind the imprisonment of Martin Luther King Jr. as described in Letter, and the availability/affordability to Plan B, systemic injustices encompass a variety of different scenarios.

In-store Emergency Contraception Pills (ECPs) cost anywhere from $40-$60. ECP’s found online, on the other hand, cost an average of $20. The discrepancy between in-store and online ECPs indicates that there is no reason for in-store prices to be as high as they are. Despite online ECPs costing lower than their in-store counterpart, they are less desirable as individuals run the risk of them not being delivered on time. Not to mention, it’s harder to keep the delivery inconspicuous, especially for minors.

https://www.huffpost.com/entry/heres-why-plan-b-costs-so_b_5785562?guccounter=1&guce_referrer=aHR0cHM6Ly93d3cuZ29vZ2xlLmNvbS8&guce_referrer_sig=AQAAALnX0cCCQ3FhKcgsYt1ccJdZXz2dtUuA_v6MUtJifUp9LJ6fq9GXHtQMSJ4rKxM-4in47x7yuKPYKMT6vjDZrwyBWtkgZ5eZvIsiGWJzo4TvqYdr0pLMMr23eMSI_BzyZ2xAqeEFzeWlnEfNa05Hj3USoUw9nZkLqsDC2BYtD-9Y

Another issue we run into with ECPs is their availability. A 2018 study by the American Society for Emergency Contraception (ASEC) found that only 60% of drug stores carry ECPs. Of the ones that do carry them, 57% lock ECPs in a box, forcing the individual to seek out an employee for assistance.

https://www.motherjones.com/politics/2019/09/i-walked-10-miles-and-visited-13-stores-to-see-how-hard-it-is-to-get-emergency-contraception/

With its high cost and minimal supply at available drugstores, teens and individuals from low-income communities are placed at a greater disadvantage and run a higher risk of accidental pregnancy. While there are many other factors contributing to higher pregnancy rates within minority and low-income communities, the high cost of Plan B adds fuel to the fire. With a statistical correlation between teen pregnancy and poverty, the punishing price of Plan B further perpetuates this inequality.

Body Shaming and Diet Culture

By Amanda Nall

A few weeks ago I was sitting in hot tub in Hocking Hills with some women who I did not know very well. The conversation was fun and light until someone began to bring up weight and body size. The comment was made: “I think 200 pounds is the cut off to how much I want to weigh.” Another comment, “you were so skinny, you looked like a twig when you were pregnant.” To hear these comments is painful and my reaction was dramatic. I had to leave and was not confident in speaking how I really felt. I think that these types of conversations are very degrading and create a negative, self-shaming environment. Idealizing body types, not accepting ones body, and encouraging poor eating habits all contribute to diet culture which ultimately silences the people which do not fit the “perfect” size. The outcast group is led to feel guilty about themselves or about what they eat, also the group is encouraged to talk negatively about one self. There is some sort of superior group which would have a very small range of body sizes and has traits that probably would not even be found on just one person. The book Beyond Beautiful as seen in the photo below tries to fight against diet culture and body shaming. It is a great resource for people, especially women, to read if they are having doubts about the health of their body image. The book includes activities that encourage readers to really analyze what events or information constructed their beliefs about body image and specifically about what the ideal body type is.

Through idealizing body types, all sort of outlets like newspapers, blogs, magazines, and advertisements have begun to sell a product that guarantees a different body than the one the consumer currently has. This Dr. Oz advertisement is a perfect example of how key phrasing and marketing ploys are used to convince a buyer that the product will change a serious part of their life. The truth is that most of our looks are determined by genetics and that burning fat is not the only thing that contributes to weight loss. Part of having a healthy body image is being willing to accept where ever ones body is and also recognizing that it could be slightly different based on lifestyle changes.

 

Image result for weight loss ads

Cash Bail Bond and Mass Incarceration

By Shaye Murray

In my first Diary of Systematic Injustice I discussed an issue of cash bail (anyone who has been arrested and wants to stay out of jail while awaiting trial) and mass incarceration. A community group by the name of Dream Defenders, a Florida based community organization fighting racial injustices in the state began their kickoff event “FREE THE BLOCK” regarding the elimination of cash bail and “nationwide grassroots efforts of inventive, people-powered campaigns that have the direct goal of reducing jail populations, ending the profiteering of caging people, and divesting from a carceral system while investing in systems that fulfill the basic needs of people.” says Maya Ragsdale. Some many spend time in jail for lack of as little as $500 or even $250 (Wykstra 2018). Many low-income individuals specifically Black men are forced to pretrial detention before criminal trial because of the inability to afford cash bond. Black and brown people as well as other low-income families are vulnerable to this policy and often suffer more because of it. The inequality is critical to many homes of African American communities that are torn apart by a system that does not see this community as whole. The criminalization of Black men for minor charges, that are executed differently from their counterparts is a pandemic. Historically, the criminal justice system has always had a track record of often harsh, inhumane, and unacceptable conditions of mass incarceration. African American men are being sentenced and given extreme punishment for minor situations while others are performing greater acts of crime and receiving minimum consequence. Pretrial detention has dramatically negative effects on the outcome of a defendant’s case: those who are held pretrial are four times more likely to be sentenced to prison than defendants released prior to trial. Pretrial detainees are also likely to make hurried decisions to plead guilty to a lower charge to spend less time behind bars rather than chancing a higher charge and longer sentence at trial (Onyekwere 2019).

In class we read Story of my Body by Ortiz, and it reminds me of the prejudice and discrimination not only did Ortiz have to endure every day, but the same acts of unlawfulness and unjust that African American men face daily as well. The color of your skin has a major effect on how individuals will perceive you and act upon who you are. In her story, she was told by Ted that they would not be attending the dance together due to her name being of Spanish descent and his father not approving. He continued to express how he had known Puerto Ricans in the army. He had lived in New York City while studying architecture and had seen how the spies lived. Like rats (Ortiz 441). The excerpt shows the negative thoughts and perspectives regarding low-income and people of color that scour society. When it comes to criminal justice men who are Black, or brown are given more barriers in the system than others. With all the concerns there has been elimination of cash bail in some states in efforts of criminal justice reform. Of course, there is controversy about whether the cash bail should be eliminated or not; however, achievements are being made to reduce the sentencing that Black and brown people have encounters for years.

Resources

https://www.brennancenter.org/our-work/research-reports/how-cash-bail-works

https://www.miaminewtimes.com/news/dream-defenders-start-free-the-block-campaign-to-end-cash-bail-in-miami-florida-11456181

vox.com/future-perfect/2018/10/17/17955306/bail-reform-criminal-justice-inequality