Straight Outta Karachi


Mustafa Qadri is‘s Middle East correspondent. A Sydneysider who now spends most of his time between London and Pakistan, Mustafa has been filing articles for us since the early days and writes on the region for outlets around the world. 

1. Who is your favourite writer?
Ben Eltham. Does that guy ever sleep?

2. When did you first start reading
Way back when it started in 2004.

3. What were you doing when you heard the sad news?
On my way to an interview. I had to read the editorial a few times to make sure I was seeing it right.

4. Were you surprised?
Yes, absolutely, especially given the high volume and quality of articles this year.

5. Will‘s demise make any difference to anything? (In 40 words or less. Yes, we know this is the limitless internet, but time’s tickin’…)
Yes, I think Australian news and opinion will be poorer. Fewer people around the world will realise that there are thinking Australians who write with compassion and humour.

6. Fill in the blank in this sentence: "I’m sad that has hit the skids because their articles occasionally stuck it to the ___ and those people give me the creeps."
Self-indulgent broadsheet editors.

7. What was the headline you always wanted to read but it never happened?
ICC Gives Bush, Blair And Howard Life Terms.

8. Where will you go for commentary when stops publishing?
My local fruit and veg market in Karachi where there are more opinions than onions.

9. What’s the second-best online source of news/analysis and satire that will now — poor sods have to work twice as hard to fill the gap?
Comment is Free at The Guardian.

10. Do you subscribe to any on-line content? What?
Foreign Policy in Focus, Asia Times Online, and Foreign Policy‘s AfPak Channel.

11. Name your favourite lovable loon and rate their threat to public safety.
Barnaby Joyce. Politics hasn’t been this entertaining since Mark Latham retired. The public safety threat is positively nuclear.

12. Favourite retired Australian politician.
Current Red Cross Australia CEO Robert Tickner who was Minister for Aboriginal Affairs under the Hawke and Keating governments.

13. Name a political writer who deserves a promotion.
Noam Chomsky. The fact he doesn’t have a regular, internationally syndicated column in the mainstream press is a scandal.

14. What subject should be compulsory in primary schools?
An accurate history of the Aboriginal genocide in Australia.

15. When was the first time you changed your mind on something important?
Probably during Friday prayers at the local mosque when I was 14.

16. What annoys you about journalists?
Taking ourselves too seriously, particularly when we have powerful friends on speed dial or think we’re super brave for travelling to "dangerous" locations that the locals have been braving for generations.

17. Who should run for public office in Australia? Which one?
Jonathan Holmes for a reinvigorated Australian Communications and Media Authority.

18. What politician and journalist combination would you like to see stuck in a lift recording a long interview?
Barack Obama and Robert Fisk.

19. What’s the one question you’d like both Kevin Rudd and Tony Abbott to answer?
Why do you both support wasteful defence spending?

20. What question would you like to ask us?
Who edited my last article!? (Joke!)


Launched in 2004, New Matilda is one of Australia's oldest online independent publications. It's focus is on investigative journalism and analysis, with occasional smart arsery thrown in for reasons of sanity. New Matilda is owned and edited by Walkley Award and Human Rights Award winning journalist Chris Graham.