Lydon at large in Lahore, by the gun where Kipling’s Kim
We’re in Pakistan at mid-summer 2011 — “the country that could kill the world,” in a native line that lingers. Or maybe the new normal. Think of Pakistan, we’re told by Pakistanis, as a model or perhaps a warning of the rising, rough, tough inequalities in the world, even in our embattled United States…
Early on we planned to see this nightmare aslant — less with oft-quoted strategists, more with the imaginative class, so to speak: with the typically grim but mettlesome singers, story-tellers and artists of Sind and the Punjab. They are wonderfully available, individual, candid women and men who have their own dark, truth-telling traditions. They each tell different stories, of course — and almost all of them different from the standard line of an “Af-Pak” crucible of global terrorism. Many of them point rather to “Indo-Pak” roots of the modern turmoil, in the Partition that carved two wounded and unequal sibling rivals out of the British Raj in 1947.