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Posts Tagged ‘Benazir Bhutto’

The Case For Musharraf – The National Post

December 30, 2007 Leave a comment

I came across an interesting article written by Conrad Black that essentially outlines the notion that despite the assassination of Benazir Bhutto, the United States must continue to support Musharraf so as to further their interests vis a vis the war on terror.  I am not a fan of Black at all but its an argument worth reading.  Who knew I would share the same opinion as Conrad Black!

Read here.

Thoughts on Bhutto’s Asassination and Nuclear Weapons

December 29, 2007 Leave a comment

When leaders get assassinated, there is a tendency for people to immediately begin romanticizing the individual.  This is certainly the case with Bhutto.  Over the past few days since her assassination, I have heard bloggers and other people claim that she was the only hope for Pakistan, she was the path for Pakistan’s progression and all this other stuff.  Although I do not condone by any means her killing, we must put all of this into perspective.  From my observations, I would attribute this romanticism to her campaign.  As we all know, it is/was election time in Pakistan and for the most part, politicians or those that are running for office always say things to appeal to the most number of voters.  Let us Keep in mind all the corruption that Bhutto was alleged to have been involved with.  Let us not forget Asif Zardari, Mr. 10/40% the man.  Let us not forget that she was elected twice and deposed twice for these allegations of corruption.  Whether or not she was herself corrupt or was in the company of corrupt elements, it is her that was ultimately responsible for these allegations. 

Some of the dirtiest leaders Pakistan has ever had have been democratically elected.  But having said that, I do believe that her assassination was not right at all.  First off, Pakistan could have had another go at democracy, which isn’t really a bad thing.  Assuming Bhutto had one the election, I do not foresee the future of the country getting brighter.  But if Bhutto were to be elected and she messed up or didn’t perform to her expectations (really, which leader does?), at least the people of Pakistan would have nobody else to blame but themselves.  And I think that’s what Pakistan really needs to some extent.  They themselves have to start being accountable for the decisions that they make.  Patience in Pakistani politics is something that lacks severely.  Please correct me if I am wrong, but I don’t believe any democratically elected leader in Pakistan has ever served out their full term.  Elections have never been allowed to hold the status quo to account.  There has always been some element that would depose the leader at hand.  This gets to my cyclical theory of Pakistani Politics.  The politics of Pakistan are dictated by cyclical patters of dictatorship and democracy.  Right now, as we speak, we are just in the transition from dictatorship todemocracy.  Assuming that Bhutto would have been elected (she was the only one that had support in Sindh, Punjab, Baluchistan and NWFP), give my cyclical theory, I am pretty sure that Bhutto would not have been able to serve out her term and Pakistan would be back to a dictatorship. 

personally, I am one of the few people that actually likes Musharraf.  I think he probably one of the best leaders Pakistan has ever had.  Pakistan was truly on the path to progression with him in power.  Even if he wasn’t democratically elected, I really don’t care.  Pakistan was doing much better in my opinion under his dictatorship than Bhutto’s and Sharif’s terms in office put together.  Now that Musharraf is a civilian, I still believe he can make positive changes for the country.  But at the same time, I think that it is time for the country to turn onto the path of democracy.  As much as Musharraf has done for Pakistan under his uniform, I come back to the issue of accountability.  The people of Pakistan under democracy will be ultimately responsible for the success or failure of their nation-state; just as how the people of the United States are responsible for the failures of their country by electing Bush. 

I quickly want to touch upon the issue of Pakistan’s nuclear weapons and the fears that it may fall into the “wrong” hands.  This is all nonsense.  The nuclear weapons program is the most expensive investment that Pakistan has ever made.  The country has put an amazing amount of time and effort into their program and they aren’t about to let it go anytime soon.  I mean afterall, its a friggin nuclear weapons program.  Pakistanis know what the hell nukes are.  So they won’t readily allow non-state actors to just walk in and have their way with these weapons.  There was an analyst on television a few nights ago (forgot his name) who advocated fears that our weapons would fall into the hands of rogue elements.  He kept claiming that the United States does not know who guards the nukes, what kind of security measures are taking to guard them and all this other speculative question begging.  The fact of the matter is, just because certain foreign elements do not know how our weapons programs are guarded, does not automatically mean that they are unsafe.  If the country has invested so much time and energy into acquiring such weapons, they are going to spend at least, if not more time and energy safe guarding them.  The nukes are something that are near and dear to the army.  Even if there are elements within the army that cooperate with the Taliban or whoever, the upper echelons of the army are interested in Pakistan and nothing but Pakistan.  So to those that fear that our Nukes will fall into the hands of the crazies do not fully understand the extent to which the army is involved in the affairs of the country.  Even if there were rogue elements that took over the country, they would only have so much power because the army is the one that really controls access to weapons.  The army will not willingly allow any actor to breach the security of these weapons.  So to those that have these fears, I say to them, you do not fully understand Pakistan and I think you should really sit down and do your research and educate yourself as to what Pakistan really is.  Pakistanis are not stupid that they would just let anyone walk in and take their weapons away from them.