Saturday, March 5, 2011

An English Racist In Pakistan

Imagine a Pakistani young man migrating to Britain, making it big on British television, getting the British passport out of turn as a goodwill gesture by the government, and then using his newfound fame and money to bash the English: accuse them of massacres against the Scotts and the Irish, and calling them names such as 'degenerates'.

That's exactly what George Fulton did in Pakistan. He landed here sometime around 2002. He's married to a Pakistani girl who I suppose is British-Pakistani. George, who is tall, fat and goofy, is not exactly TV material but his story impressed a young TV producer.
Geo was a rising new TV network in Pakistan at the time [it tops the charts these days]. Some creative producer there spotted the tall, fat and goofy George and hired him for a new show, George Ka Pakistan, or George's Pakistan, the story of a young Englishman who wants to make Pakistan his new permanent home.

You have to understand how big a deal this show was at the time. Until 2002, Pakistanis had only seen one television channel their whole lives: the state-run PTV.  Geo was new and stunning. And then this show where an Englishman travels across the country getting to know Pakistanis and talking to them about moving to their country.

Of course, Pakistanis liked the fact that this 'bloke' was not only moving to their country but was also married to a Pakistani girl.

Flush with fame and money, he and his wife were hired by another television network to host its morning show. The two were highly paid and were invited to parties and mingled with the high and mighty of Pakistan. So much so that Mr. Shaukat Aziz, the prime minister during President Musharraf's government, granted George Pakistani citizenship, ignoring procedure.

Until last year, Mr. and Mrs. Fulton were basking in the glory.  But ever since Mr. Fulton lost his daytime job at the morning show, he's become bitter. With no high-paying job offers coming his way, he turned against the country.

There's nothing wrong in criticism, but outright racism? Please.

Mr. Fulton believes Pakistanis are responsible for the massacres that accompanied Pakistan's War for Independence in 1947. What he's saying is that Pakistanis killed Indians by the thousands in that war, which is a historical fallacy believed only by a few Indianized Englishmen.

Not just that, Mr. Fulton has taken it upon himself to ask Pakistanis to revolt against the Pakistani military and the country's spy services because, in his view, they are no good.

Good God.

We in Pakistan face daily dosages of CIA-produced propaganda material duly published by the likes of New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Der Spiegel. It's a concerted campaign that's been going on for the past five years or more. And here comes Mr. Fulton to offer his two cents, or pennies.

This is why I just couldn't stop laughing as I read Mr. Ghalib Sultan's excellent op-ed on Mr. Fulton [Click here to read it, or follow this link ].