Imran H. Khan

Yousaf_Khan

In order to get a much deeper understanding of the capabilities of F-86, I had a unique opportunity to have a candid discussion about its performance in actual air combat with a  Pakistan Air Force officer, then Flt. Lt Yousaf Ali Khan. He shared his experience in the F-86 in the video below. His praise of F-86 is specially noteworthy as he can objectively compare it with other contemporary fighters like the Hunter and Mig-21 which he also flew.  Besides his insights into the noteworthy aspects of the F-86, his story is a compelling one from a number of different aspects. While the video was made in very informal circumstances, I thought that it worthwhile sharing it as it was a unique opportunity to capture some very important historical events that shaped the 1965 war of the Indian sub continent.

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Imran H. Khan

F-86_dayton_FrontSome stories take a lifetime to develop. Sometimes an incredibly capable concoction of aluminium, rubber and electronics ends up reminding you of its significance from time to time all during ones life. One such very exquisite piece of technology is the F-86 Sabre. Most recently I came across it standing in the National Museum of USAF in Dayton Ohio. It belonged to Bruce Hinton who became the first US pilot to shoot down a Mig-15 in the Korean war. My earliest childhood memory in Mauripur PAF base, Karachi are filled with the sights and sounds of this new aircraft that would shake the windows of our house, as the pilots were flying them low like the propeller driven planes that they had been used to. One of my fondest memory is of my father taking me to the F-86 that he had just ferried from the US. He had hidden an inordinate number of toys in all possible compartments that he opened one after the other to my unending joy. It was quite a heady times for a newly formed nation with such state of the art planes. I can only imagine what a high it would have been for my father from being a refugee ,with the only belonging being the clothes on his body a few years earlier after partition, to being able to fly these shiny airborne chariots. Pakistan Air Force (PAF) ended up acquiring 240 Sabres that stayed in service from 1956 to 1979.

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Imran Khan

In the name of God the Compassionate, the Merciful

There are certain events in the destiny of a nation which turn out to be a defining moments.  I believe the massacre at Newtown Ct. is one of them.  It is a defining moment not only because of the ghastly nature of the crime but also its causes.  The current narrative starting from the President downwards is that the widespread availability of the guns is to be blamed. On the other end of the spectrum the NRA is making the strange proposal of making every school teacher be armed. Under normal circumstances it would have been darkly amusing. Sure guns have something to do with it, but they are manifestation of the root cause. Lance Armstrong’s inspirational book titled ‘It’s Not About the Bike’ looks beyond what is obvious and takes the reader deeper into what really matters. What happened in Newtown can happen in any town in the USA, because the environment has been primed by the policies formed by the US government at the end of the Vietnam war. The image of children running away in the My Lai massacre changed the opinion of Americans against the Vietnam war.  It eroded the blind trust that Americans had put in their governments and things have never been quite the same.  The bitter lesson learned by the policy makers from this experience was to end the draft and not to allow journalists into the battlefield or document the returning body bags. This freed them from having to send their kids to the battlefields and to control the narrative of the events for American consumption. Anyone who stood in the way was either dehumanized or branded as unpatriotic.  The net result has been the steady growth of callouses of lack of empathy and compassion in the collective and individual behaviors.

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Imran H. Khan

We are told that Imran Khan stands a good chance of becoming the next Prime Minister of Pakistan, whenever the elections are next held. Many question whether he has the necessary organization and money in place to make a realistic run for it.  He was planning to make a fund raising trip to the US to raise the much needed funds for conducting an effective electoral campaign, but the trip was canceled/postponed at the last minute due to rapidly changing political situation with the expulsion of ex PM Gilani.  Until recently I was a luke warm supporter of Imran because of his sometimes not well thought out statements. Recent rapid changes in the socio-political landscape in Pakistan has confirmed the worst case scenarios for all the other political entities as being inimical to the health of Pakistan and Pakistanis. PPP has earned its wings as the Pakistan’s Plundering Party, Sharif’s have no concept of conflict of interest or respect for law, MQM is essentially a fascist party and different garden varieties of “Islamic” parties are anything but, and closet sympathizers of criminals and power grabbers under the guise of jihad. With all his public and private short comings, Imran Khan has been left the last man standing. His understanding of world affairs is better than all the heads of the other parties combined.  His views on Islam are not Arabized and has a healthy dose of patriotism. Read more

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Imran Khan

Ten years after the “Islamic Attack” on 9/11, some of the saner Americans have overcome the trauma to reflect on the reality that is Islam’s historic legacy. I had the privilege of viewing many pieces of art from various muslim countries made of the period of centuries at the Metropolitan museum in New York. The pain taken in exquisitely presenting these incredible pieces is worth every praise.  The curators took the time and effort to dig into the history of each and every piece and present it to the visitor in both written and aural form. The respect shown to the work of muslim artists is in sharp contrast to the negative narrative still in mainstream media. But healthy signs are now manifesting them in different forms where some of the americans are having the guts to standing up to the mainstream media.

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Imran Khan

One of OPEN’s goals has all along been to support businesses in Pakistan in a manner consistent with our core principles of staying “Hungry and Foolish” with respect to entrepreneurism. OPEN chapters have historically gone out of their way to assist Pakistani businesses efforts to gain traction in the US and global markets.  We started off by assisting those Pakistani businessmen visiting the US, as we were busy establishing ourselves. We, then with the assistance of MIT Enterprise Forum, started the MITEFP-OPEN Business Acceleration Plan competition in Karachi Pakistan. This allowed us to gain traction with the young and budding entrepreneurs their. There were some hesitancy within OPEN about opening a chapter in Pakistan as some other similar organizations did not do as well due to lack of right kind of leadership needed. The winners of BAP competition showed us that there is a new breed of Pakistani businessmen who have the credentials and zest who could be worked with. Read more

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Imran H. Khan

I was recently invited to a dinner by a doctor friend where I had the opportunity to meet Ethan Casey and Todd Shea. Ethan has written a book called “Alive and Well in Pakistan” which captures his interactions with Pakistanis  in his stay there. Most of the people there were doctors of Pakistani descent living around the Boston area. They had organized a fund raiser a day earlier and the dinner was to get to meet these two gentlemen up close. I had met Todd Shea earlier a couple of years ago and was familiar with his work and admired how he had been able to connect with the people of Kashmir and had decided to settle amongst them. As we got talking it struck me that we in the US of Pakistani descent shared a lot in common the two guests. Todd mentioned that he deliberately travels in T shirt and western clothes without carrying any weapons and the people in Pakistan greatly appreciate it. A lady guest at the dinner,who works in a large retail store,  commented that ever since 9/11 she makes it a point to let people know that she is a Pakistani Muslim and that vast majority of people that she interacts with appreciate it. Ethan and Todd in their efforts are trying to convey to the Americans that Pakistanis are like regular people that have been wrongfully demonized in the US press to suit the narrative concocted by the US policy makers to further their goals of hegemony and power projection. Read more

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Imran H. Khan

Carolyn Evans is both an artist and a sculptor.  Her art appeals to both the child amongst us as well as the thinker.  To me her art has been an acquired taste.  When I first saw her painting of houses with fish floating in the air, I did not know what to make of it. But over time it is exactly those paintings that have stuck in my mind’s eye.  Many of her paintings have an ambiguity that keeps the viewer’s mind active considerably beyond the time the visual pleasures have subsided.

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Imran H. Khan

President Obama’s state of the union focused on investments into education and innovation as the key engines for maintaining USA’s leadership position in the long term. The same is equally applicable for developing countries like Pakistan. OPEN has been facilitating entrepreneurs in America for over ten years. OPEN joined hands with MIT to conduct Business Acceleration Plans as a way to doing the same in Pakistan.  It was felt that rather than focusing on start ups it would be socially more effective to take companies whose sales were $1M-$5M to the next level. This is the reason for naming it as an acceleration plan. BAP has impacted 120 companies over the last four years that it has been conducted.  The four finalists of the BAP were in Boston today and interacted with OPEN’s New England Chapter members.

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by Imran H. Khan
When I first heard of the pervasive use of the body scanners or the alternative aggressive body pats it made me cringe as this would make air travel even less attractive than what it currently is, with the many security checks. It seems that the Homeland security has already deployed 400 hundred of x ray back scatter type scanners across over a hundred airports in the US. The choice that is now being offered to a passenger is either get yourself scanned over undergo the humiliation of an aggressive pat down, an euphemism for a stranger touching your private parts. These procedures are now in place in 450 airports and 800 million passengers will experience it over the course of the year. Read more

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