'Showing what it means to be brave in Pakistan' -- the reason why Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) leader Sherry Rehman is on the Foreign Policy Top 100 Global Thinkers list. She is among the only two Pakistanis in the list and the only one in the top 50 (Rehman landed on number 47).
Foreign Policy magazine released a list of Top 100 Global Thinkers on November 28. The top 10 of the list went to Arab Revolutionaries from Libya, Egypt, Qatar, Yemen, Saudi Arabia etc.
Sherry Rehman, who was appointed Pakistan’s Ambassador to the United States (US) after the Memogate scandal, makes it to the list for championing the cause of amending the country’s Blasphemy Laws.
She refused to back down after the assassination of Governor Punjab Salmaan Taseer and minorities minister Shahbaz Bhatti, and criticism from religious parties.
Rehman says her ‘muse’ is Steve Jobs and she prefers stimulus over austerity. The newly appointed ambassador has picked China over the US in response to a question by the magazine.
The ‘best idea’ according to Rehman is “talking to everyone, especially the enemy”, “trade without aid” is the worst.
Nuclear physicist and defence analyst, Pervez Hoodbhoy is the second Pakistani on the list (number 85), for his 'bold secular defiance'.
Hoodbhoy also, like Rehman, picked China over the US. A US exit from Afghanistan is the best idea according to the nuclear physicist, a hasty exit would be a bad one.
Interestingly, Admiral (r) Mike Mullen also makes it to the list (number 38) for his 'courageous final act'. Mullen, in a congressional testimony, had called the Haqqani network a “veritable arm” of the Inter-Services Intelligence agency (ISI), a statement which drew much criticism from Pakistan.
Former US Ambassador to Pakistan, Anne Patterson is also on the list, tied with four other American diplomats, for 'writing the WikiLeaks cable that mattered'. In her 2009 cable, Patterson had said US policies towards Pakistan risked "destabilizing the Pakistani state, alienating both the civilian government and the military leadership, and provoking a broader governance crisis".
Other notable mentions:
Dick Cheney and Condoleezza Rice - for making the world we live in.
Bill and Melinda Gates - for putting their money where their mouth is.
Jack Dorsey (Exectuive chairman - Twitter) and Mark Zuckerberg (CEO - Facebook) - for changing how we do just about everything - even overthrow governments.
Bill and Hillary Clinton - for being America's power couple - and showing why it matters.
Nicolas Sarkozy - for giving France its swagger back.
Aung San Suu Kyi - for believing in the promise of democracy.
Anna Hazare - for asking the world's largest democracy to live up to its billing.
Maria Bashir - for aspiring to an Afghanistan ruled by law, not men.
Arundhati Roy - for being the voice of India's voiceless.