Pakistan's Ali Sadpara: The climber who never came back from K2

Why is it that we cannot recognize the worth of a human being until after they’re gone? We only celebrate our local heroes once they are no longer with us, then start lauding their efforts. Thankfully, heroes like Ali Sadpara, as well as Iceland's John Snorri and Chile's Juan Pablo Mohr, pursue their passion because it is the summit that calls to them - not the applause. We say many things are “insurmountable”, but K2 - the savage mountain - is the literal example of it. It has felled many great and daring men and women, but it can never dominate the spirit of adventure and patriotism that was showcased by Ali Sadpara, who is the only Pakistani to have climbed eight of the world's 14 highest mountains, and to make the first ever winter ascent of the world's ninth highest peak, Nanga Parbat. He did so with a smile on his face and the Pakistani flag in his hands. We honor the efforts of his family to bring them back. Ali Sadpara’s legacy will always be bigger than any mountain. Caption by @thisiswajeeha

Who is to blame for Saeed Book Bank’s impending closure?

Who is to blame for Saeed Book Bank’s impending closure? Reading about Saeed Book Bank’s impending collapse made me think about my last visit to the store; it took me 20 minutes just to find someone to help look for the books I wanted. Once found, it was evident from the salesperson’s disinterest that it was not by mere chance that none of them could be seen in the spacious yet dusty shop. The help they offered was more abysmal than the look on their faces, with me having to run around two flo

Pakistan's tribal areas: 'Neither faith nor union found'

For years, Rab Nawaz*, a 31-year-old citizen journalist and activist, advocated for change in Kurram, a tribal district blessed with fertile valleys and green mountains that has seen little development since independence. When the merger was announced, Nawaz was ecstatic, calling his friends and family members to share his joy. A month later, however, he was arrested along with five members of his family, according to FCR regulations - which allowed for the arrest of members of the same family

Post-Merger Inaction in FATA: Expectations vs. Reality

In May 2018, the Pakistani government passed a historic constitutional amendment that ended the semi-autonomous rule of its Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), abolished the colonial-era laws that governed it, and merged it with the country’s territory. The merger was widely heralded as a way of ushering development into the impoverished tribal region, but this investigation reflects the new challenges arising from how the merger was carried out.

U.S. bans electronics on direct flights from Qatar (and 9 other Muslim countries)

Electronic items larger than a cell-phone will have to be checked in and not brought as a carry-on by all Qatar Airways passengers flying to the U.S starting Saturday, March 21, 2017. This includes laptops, tablets, e-readers, cameras, portable DVD players, electronic game units larger than a smartphone, and travel printers/scanners. The U.S. ban was revealed Monday, but news reports today state that passengers flying from several cities in the Middle East to the United Kingdom have also been p

Housing and Residence Life to charge students staying over the winter break

Starting December 16, students living in the residential halls in Education City will have to check out of their rooms before leaving for winter break or pay a weekly rate if they plan to stay during the break. The changes were announced in an email sent out Thursday by Housing and Residence Life that also outlined changes in the student housing contract and community living standards. The new policies are a result of an update to the HRL housing contract.

National Geographic Photographers’ Favorite Wildlife Pictures

In honor of World Wildlife Day, March 3, National Geographic photographers share their favorite wildlife photos from the sea, on land, and in the air. “The future of wildlife is in our hands” is the theme of this year’s UN-sponsored World Wildlife Day, which celebrates wild animals and plants around the world. (Read more about National Geographic's Photo Ark.) The day also spreads awareness about threats facing species.

CMUQ Hosts Third Annual Andrew MUN Conference

Carnegie Mellon University in Qatar held its third annual Andrew Model United Nations Conference this weekend. Ninety high school delegates from around Qatar attended the two-day conference, which mimics the debating atmosphere of the actual committees in the United Nations. The event was organized by CMU-Q students for high school students in Qatar and saw an increase in attendance from 76 students last year. In addition to organizers from CMU-Q, students from other universities in Education

For Pakistani students in Education City, political situation at home fuels online debate

Approximately three weeks ago, countrywide demonstrations against Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif gained momentum. Protesters from two of Pakistan’s political parties flocked to the capital, Islamabad. Nearly 1,400 miles away, in Education City, the majority of Pakistani students turned to Facebook and Twitter to express their views. Pakistan’s political instability is a cause for serious concern for many Pakistanis in EC. Among these is Bilal Shakir, a senior at Georgetown University Sc

Inky's Daring Escape Shows How Smart Octopuses Are

An octopus at New Zealand's National Aquarium made a break for freedom by slipping out of its tank, slithering down a drainpipe and escaping into the ocean earlier this year. Inky, a male common New Zealand octopus, escaped his enclosure through a small opening. He slid across the floor during the night and squeezed his body through a narrow pipe leading to open waters. “He was very inquisitive and liked to push boundaries,” says Rob Yarrell, the manager of the National Aquarium of New Zealand...

See Swarms of Bugs Descend Like a Summer Snowstorm

Each summer, millions of mayflies rise from the Ebro River, converging on the medieval stone bridge of Tudela, in northeastern Spain. Attracted by lamplights along the bridge, the insects swarm the area in a fluttering cloud of white wings. (See amazing swarm pictures from National Geographic magazine.) After spending up to a year underwater as larvae, these fragile insects emerge from the water to mate, lays eggs on an aquatic surface, and die—all in the span of a few hours.

Doha’s Shehzad Bhanji and His Journey to Rolling Stone

For over 25 years, Qatar-based musician Shehzad Bhanji has been using instruments to share his story with the world. Originally from Karachi, Pakistan, the guitarist has been living and creating music in Qatar for the past four years, where he shot his recent music video. This year, in March, Bhanji’s talent was recognized by the renowned magazine Rolling Stone, with an interview published in Rolling Stone India.

More Than 6,000 Manatees Spotted in Florida—A Record

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission recently reported a record minimum count of 6,250 manatees in its annual aerial survey of the state’s waters, which includes sites with large manatee gatherings. This breaks the last record of 5,077 manatees in 2010. Though this is just a minimum count and not necessarily a trend, the discovery seems to support growing data that suggests the endangered marine mammal may be bouncing back.

Sperm Whales Found Full of Car Parts and Plastics

The 13 sperm whales washed up near the German state of Schleswig-Holstein earlier this year, the latest in a series of whale strandings around the North Sea. So far, more than 30 sperm whales have been found beached since the start of the year in the U.K., the Netherlands, France, Denmark, and Germany. After a necropsy of the whales in Germany, researchers found that four of the giant marine animals had large amounts of plastic waste in their stomachs. The garbage included a nearly 43-foot-long