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Last sentence… BrassTacks core values: “We will take the lead in showing the world how Islamic principles are the most practical and useful for human development, and how the only way forward for humanity lies in adopting them.” Introduction
Mr. Zaid Hamid is a security consultant and strategic defense analyst. He is the founder of BrassTacks, a unique Pakistani think-tank devoted to the study of regional and global political events and their implications for Pakistan's security and interests. As an expert on the subject, he is frequently invited to speak on national television networks. He has his own dedicated program called "BrassTacks with Zaid Hamid" on the News1 channel, where he skillfully knits together the undercurrents of apparently disconnected global events, and builds a larger perspective regarding the threats we face, and where our true national interests lie. This program has pioneered a new trend in current affairs programming in Pakistan. Owing to the tremendous appreciation received by this educational program series, a number of people have expressed interest in learning more about Mr. Zaid Hamid. We present below a brief overview of his personal life, interests and expertise.
Early Life & Afghan War Early in his youth when Mr. Zaid Hamid started his graduate degree, the Muslim Ummah was challenged by the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan – a landmark event that started Mr. Zaid’s career as a soldier and a mujahid. Staking his life and career, he signed up as a volunteer in the Afghan war, and actively participated in the jihad right up to the liberation of Kabul. Over all, Mr. Zaid has spent more than six years of active participation in the jihad. Due to his being a black belt second dan of the Shotokan martial art, coupled with his charismatic leadership qualities and in-depth familiarity with modern weapons (which he inherited from his father, a distinguished veteran of the ‘65 war), Mr. Zaid quickly became a notable contributor in the Afghan jihad. It was through this firsthand participation in the finest guerilla operations of the time that he gained his valuable insights and expertise in irregular warfare, counter insurgency, low and high intensity conflicts, and strategic war planning. His travels in Afghanistan allowed him to network with a number of key figures of the jihad from both Afghanistan and Pakistan, and gave him his unique insight into the psyche of the Afghan people, the political undercurrents of the region, the inside story of the whole operation, as well as the role of the CIA and other clandestine agencies in the Great Game. To top it all, he still managed to visit the university campus every now and then and completed his Computer Systems Engineering degree.
Professional Profile After the war Mr. Zaid started his career as a security professional, covering subjects like electronic security solutions, security systems design, and the training of security personnel. His years in the war significantly contributed to sharpening his expertise in perceiving security threats and developing successful counter measures. After a successful stint as Area Head of the
Security Alarms Systems division of an eminent security company, he launched his own private consulting company called BrassTacks Security in the late 1990s. This company specializes in corporate security systems design, security systems audit, and security intelligence reporting. You can learn more about it on the corporate website www.brasstacks.biz. Education & Training With his backpack full of books even in the barren hills of Afghanistan, Mr. Zaid has always lived by the Prophet’s (pbuh) instruction; to seek knowledge from the cradle to the grave. Even today he considers himself a student, and is ever willing to learn from others as well as teach what he has learnt and experienced. As one converses with him, in one’s own choice of the five languages that he speaks, one quickly realizes the depth and breadth of his knowledge on topics related to religion, philosophy, world history and military subjects. In particular, he is passionate about Islam and possesses extensive knowledge of the Quran and Sunnah, as well as Islamic political history, Islamic social and economic history, and the mechanisms and foundations of Muslims’ economic and social achievements. He has in-depth comprehension of topics concerning contemporary issues of the Muslim world and practical steps in reclaiming our lost glory.
In his quest for learning from his elders, Mr. Zaid has had personal acquaintances with many eminent authors, thinkers and scholars of our time. He is strongly inspired by the thoughts of Wasif Ali Wasif and Ashfaq Ahmad. He has also traveled to many different countries and regions, including his numerous visits to the Hjiaz-e-Muqaddas, Turkey, and other friendly Muslim countries.
Mr. Zaid is himself a prolific writer and the author of dozens of published articles and handbooks on different defense and security related issues, and appears regularly on mainstream media as an analyst on various security and defense matters. His views on security issues especially are taken as authority by clients including multinationals, the Government of Pakistan, and embassies of friendly countries. Religious Affiliations A number of people question us about the religious affiliations of Mr. Zaid. As true Muslims, of course, the ideal role model for us all is the Prophet (pbuh).
After him, in order to understand Zaid Hamid's religious view points, if there is any other person in whom we can say Mr. Zaid believes and whose ideology he follows, then it is Hz. Allama Iqbal. Mr. Zaid has extensively read the revolutionary philosophy of Iqbal and his message of Islamic unity and Muslim renaissance, and strongly believes in practically following Iqbal’s teachings of ‘Ishq-e-Rasool’ and ‘Khudi’. Like Iqbal, Mr. Zaid dismisses the factional and sectarian divisions among Muslims, and advocates for the Ummah to rise above its differences and meet the greater challenges that we collectively face.
Butaan-e-rang o khoon koe tore kar millat mein gum hoe ja Na Toorani rahe baqi, na Irani, na Afghani
Other than promoting the following of the pristine message of Islam as brought by the Prophet (pbuh), Mr. Zaid has absolutely no affiliations with any political, sectarian or religious group or party.
BrassTacks Think-Tank Throughout his life of jihad, self-development and learning, the issues of Islamic renaissance and the resurgence of Pakistan as a prosperous and strong Muslim country have been the personal passion of Mr. Zaid. The creation of BrassTacks Think-Tank is a culmination of his lifelong efforts and aspirations.
The mission of Brasstacks Think-Tank is exactly what the mission of Mr. Zaid himself has always been: to strive for the establishment of a stronger Pakistan by creating awareness and imparting education on issues of strategic national importance, and providing guidance to the people on how to develop a comprehensive strategy for safeguarding our national interests and ideological frontiers. You can learn more about BrassTacks on our About Us page.
BrassTacks is a private venture of Mr. Zaid, and some close like-minded friends who all share the common cause of commitment and patriotism towards Pakistan. BrassTacks accepts no funding from any outward source, and is not affiliated with any political party or institution. However, BrassTacks maintains a friendly and advisory role towards key institutions of Pakistan including the Government of Pakistan, the Foreign Office, Pakistan Army, and embassies of friendly Islamic countries.
BrassTacks Think-Tank has attracted a lot of talent from the youth of Pakistan, and is already playing a pivotal role in shaping the future of Pakistan’s domestic and foreign policies. Mr. Zaid welcomes all of you to join hands with BrassTacks and play your role in Islamic Renaissance and Muslim Unity through the agency of this God-gifted country of Pakistan.
In the words of Zaid Hamid sahib, the founder of BrassTacks, "Our organization is Pakistan, our identity is Islam, and our constitution is the quran". We represent nothing other than this. Our mission is to revive our pristine religious values, and helping create awareness among the people so they can understand the finer, subtle truths of our Islamic wisdom in relation to our current situation. Specifically, some of the salient points related to our mission are as follows: 1. Strengthen the people's belief in Pakistan. Promote the study of our history and the thoughts and speeches of Allama Iqbal and Qaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah. Familiarize the people with the Pakistan ideology, rekindle the spirit of patriotism, and counter and dispel any false propaganda against Pakistan. 2. Publish literature and video programs to educate the general public and government officials on key issues of national security, thus empowering them with the knowledge to take correct policy decisions. 3. Expose and suggest counter measures against the conspiracies of foreign agencies which are actively working to destabilize and divide us.
4. Free Pakistan from the vicious trap of interest-based economic and banking system which has artifically and fraudulantly indebted the whole nation to billions of dollars of loan. 5. Introduce the true 100% interest-free gold-based Islamic economic system in Pakistan. Publish credible research to demonstrate its economic soundness in modern times. 6. Rekindle the spirit of patriotism and brotherhood among the people, and introduce a culture of zakat-based spending, ecounraging the provision of free food to people under the Islamic concept of "Taam-el-miskeen". 7. Restore a sense of honor and dignity in the nation by reintroducing our people to their glorious Islamic heritage and pristine cultural and moral values. 8. Create awareness against foreign threats to Pakistan's strategic water, mineral and power resources, including the saftey and continuity of our nuclear defence program. 9. Promote and lobby for legal and constitutional reforms to reflect the true spirit of the Quran and Sunnah.
Pakistan aik Ishq
The state of Pakistan was established through the force of ideology- and this ideology is the defining essence that gave the country the strength to survive these six decades. This state was born with a miracle, it has been sustained by miracles, and it is destined to show the world how to work miracles too. The dream of a separate homeland where this ideology could and would direct the Muslims’ lives culminated on a sacred night and a sacred dateFriday, 27th Ramadan. It is a territory that has been paid for not in gold, but an entity much more valuable- blood. Against all natural laws, this newborn nation dealt with and survived the refugee overflow, the first war over Kashmir, the water dispute with India, a financial emergency and much more, with just a makeshift army and hardly any industry or infrastructure, before it was a year old. We have suffered blows and recovered time and again, so much so that we surprised the world again by becoming the only Muslim nuclear power. Is it all coincidence? It would be too far-fetched to call our entire history that. We see the power our ideology wields, the immense potential that is ours to tap. Allama Iqbal and the Quaid-e-Azam were two figures who tried to explain this potential to us; Iqbal through his writings, and the Quaid followed up by actually providing us with the instrument we must use to empower this ideology: the state of Pakistan. The two-nation theory was not a new idea; it was the expression of facts visible to all. Jinnah refuted all argument opposing it when he said ‘We are
a Nation of a hundred million… with our distinct culture and civilization, language and literature, art and architecture, legal laws and moral codes, customs and calendar, history and traditions, aptitudes and ambitions. In short, as Muslims we have our own distinctive outlook on life. By all cannons of international laws, we are a nation.’ And what is more, we are a nation entrusted with a responsibility. The physical separation became inevitable with the passing of the Pakistan Resolution in 1940 after the events during the Congress Rule, and the celebration of the Day of Deliverance by Muslims across India when it ended in 1939. The significant part was the role that the new state was to play in geopolitics. The second Islamic ideological state of the world even shares the substance of its name with the first, Madina-Tayyaba. It is a fourteen hundred year old legacy that this nation must take its turn to uphold. Just as the Conquest of Makkah proved to be symbolic for Islam in times that came, the prophesied victory in the Ghazwa-e-Hind, ours to claim, is indicative of the role this ideologydriven nation will play in restoring peace to the world. The foundation for Pakistan was laid when the first Muslim entered the subcontinent, and it will continue to live until the last Muslim survives in this region. Pakistan is not a merely a shape on the map- it is the air that a nation of 170 million breathes every second, the lifeline of the very deen of Islam itself.