Anthrax and toilet cleaners

The problem with the Islamabad High Court is that it is new-fangled, and its judges perhaps do not realize that their purpose is to make sure that things go smoothly. No less than six wrote a letter to the Chief Justice, complaining of interference by a particular intelligence agency.

After a bit of give-and-take with the PM, the Supreme Court finally took suo motu notice of the matter, which was followed by the mysterious arrival of letters containing a white powder, which the accompanying letter said was anthrax, but the CTD tests showed the powder had arsenic in it. Anthrax spores could have caused a fatal illness. But arsenic needs to be administered in food.

Somebody who claims to get poison in her food is Mrs Imran Khan, who says a few drops of toilet cleaner are put in each meal. Imran Khan seems to be reserving the rare Asiatic poison, beloved of the authors of Victorian penny dreadful, for himself. Bushra Bibi has not countered with any of the genies she is supposed to control.

An interesting fact: all the CCTV cameras around the post boxes where the powder-bearing letters are dead. So much for the Safe City concept.

It is interesting that, in an entirely unrelated development, there has been a report on how RAW is using assassinations all over the world, and has killed about 20 people since 2019. Only RAW could be evil enough to post those letters, yet inefficient enough to use talcum powder. And it shows that in a competition between the Safe City Authority and RAW, bet on RAW.

Frankly, one should reject any idea that the ISI is behind the letters. I mean, it’s not that dumb. RAW, on the other hand, is. You know who else is probably that dumb? A certain former Test cricketer of our acquaintance, who has a track record of attempting to come up with film scripts of 1960s Hollywood spy thrillers. The purpose? Getting bail from the recipients. Not to mention reviving Bollywood.

The Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps lost the commander of its ground forces and his deputy in the Israeli attack on its Damascus consulate. Certainly unusual, but only Israel could carry it off: attacking diplomatic premises is a new low, but then, Israelis have bombed schools and hospitals in Gaza, not to mention aid workers.

Well, aid workers might not have liked being killed, but there’s a Dutchwoman, Zoraya ter Breek, 28, who will commit suicide at home in her living-room next month, assisted by a  medical team, which will give her a fatal injection. She’s not got some painful cancer, but suffers from both depression and autism, and opted for the suicide after learning that medical science would not get her any better.

The Netherlands, by the way, has got a long history of allowing assisted suicides. In countries where it’s not legal, like here, those who helped would face a murder charge. Only in February, a former PM, Andries van Agt,and his wife committed an assisted suicide. He was 94, and had suffered a stroke some years ago. I suppose the funny thing is that he was a former head of the successor to the Christian Democrats, who were supposed to be inspired by Christianity. Doesn’t Christianity have as strong a prejudice against suicide, assisted or otherwise, as Islam?


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