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By Syed M.Aslam
July 01 - 07, 2002

*** "WE COULDN'T CARE less whether they de-escalate or not... They called back their navy what for? Let them remain in the high seas... They are not doing us any favour by de-escalating... they can carry on remaining on the borders."

(President Pervez Musharraf calling India's military de-escalation as self-serving)

*** "THERE WILL BE GUNFIRE all over and the foreigners will not be able to spend a day here. Nor will the journalists."

(Loyal-turn-rebel Afghan warlord Padsha Khan demanding the resignation of Afghan President Hamid Karzai saying that his election at the recently held Loya Jirga grand assembly was a farce)


(Headmaster of a school in a small desert town of Indian state of Rajasthan which hosts annual rituals for rats which according to Hindu legends are incarnations of human beings)

*** "IT IS THE ISLAMIC NATION which is the target of terrorism. It has been bombed, pounded by planes, submitted to blockades, economic sanctions and then accused of terrorism."

(Sudanese information minister Mahdi Ibrahim speaking at foreign ministers' meeting of the 57-member Organization of Islamic Conference highlighting Muslims being made target of terrorists attacks across the world. He cited Palestine as the prime example)

*** "AS FOR ME, I am in the best of states, and I swear I am not a prisoner, but rather, in a five-star hotel, thank God."

(Ironically humourous letter written by 28-year old Kuwaiti Abdullah Kamel from Guantanamo Bay. Abdullah, an assistant engineer at the Ministry of Electricity, was captured in Afghanistan while doing charity work and is one of 12 Kuwaiti nationals whose families have sued the US government for being detained at the dreaded American naval base without charges)

*** "THE GOVERNMENT has been trying to browbeat Tahelka.com ever since we ran the defence expose... It speaks volumes about the lack of press freedom in India."

(Editor of Indian news website Tahelka.com, Tarun Tejpal, commenting on the raid conducted by federal investigation agency Central Board of Revenue for exposing rampant corruption in government)

*** "IT'S FOR THE PALESTINIANS to choose the people they choose to elect. It's not a question of saying we are going to tell people who they elect or not."

(British Prime Minister Tony Blair refusing to endorse US President George W. Bush's call for the removal of Yasser Arafat as the Palestinian leader at the G-8 summit in Canada)

*** "I HAVE LIVED IN SHAME and apologizes for hurting the hearts of people who supported me... My sons will be sternly punished under the law."

(South Korean President Kim Dae-Jung offering apology on live television speech for arrest of his three sons on charges of corruption)

*** "HE WAS THINKING I was calling him. I was thinking he was calling me. The same thing happened to (Pakistan President) Pervez Musharraf also... If you don't look at the causes, and remove the causes, then there will be terrorism."

(Malaysian President Mahathir Mohammed talking about botched phone attempt with Indian Prime Minister Vajpayee and Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf)

*** "AMERICA SHOULD step down from the back of the devil, before it becomes the devil... Why do the 56 Islamic countries act so weak towards the Palestinian issue? Why don't they do anything?"

(Former Iranian president Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, asking the US to drop hostile policies towards his country and treat it as an 'equal')

*** "YES... Whether we are talking about asylum, whether we are talking about sport event, there are various stereotypical assumptions made."

(Britain's Chief Prosecutor Sir David Calvert-Smith's reply to a question posed by BBC radio 'if Britain is racist to the core')

*** "I'M SURE you understand that the Mercedes was a gift, and our policies are not made on the basis of gifts."

(South African foreign minister Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma commenting on presentation of an armour-plated Mercedes to President Thabo Mbeki as gift by Libyan President Colonel Muammar Qaddafi)