The Supreme Court of Pakistan, finally realizing that they can do better by not trussing up the dictatorship, reinstated CJ Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry and nullified the reference filed against him by Musharraf.
I find it hard to imagine how The General will survive all this. CJ Chaudhry back at the bench will surely pick up where he left off - hearing cases about the disappeared. Musharraf has lost all credibility and legitimacy since Feb/March. Even the Lal Masjid operation provided temporary relief. The General has already declared that there will be elections and he will run in them 'in uniform' - which sounds as unhinged as anything Yahya declared in East Pakistan.
In the meanwhile, human bombs continue to blast away.
I feel like reciting some Faraz but I will restrain myself.
Also in grand academic tradition, I am recycling.
Update: Guardian has an investigative piece on Musharraf/Bhutto.
"I find it hard to imagine how The General will survive all this." According to the Dawn, the PPP is going to "back" Musharraf: "The talks between the government and the Pakistan People's Party have made some headway, with the PPP reportedly assuring the ruling coalition that it will not create hurdles in the way of President Gen Pervez Musharraf's attempts to get re-elected from the present assemblies, according to some highly-placed official sources." http://www.dawn.com/2007/07/20/top9.htm And this, after Musharraf jailed some of their members! http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/06/05/AR2007060501899.html I thought PPP was one of the opposition parties...?
If the PPP does support him, I hope the party rank and file finally ditches its blind support for BB, and that at least some of the leaders do too, and break away from the mother ship... in Aitzaz Ahsan, they have an electable leader... of course he's been around for ages, but after driving the CJP around the country and dishing out yet another defeat to Sharifuddin Pirzada, he's more than just an intellectual in the Senate... BB has a history of giving in to the generals... it is said that she was ready to cut a deal with the man who hanged her father, no less... luckily for her, he died... this time too, she wants to go against the will of her voters by supporting Musharraf... I just hope her voters finally see the light of day...
Umar: Speaking of Ahsan, he called the reference against the CJ "the mother of all evils..." "BB has a history of giving in to the generalsâ€¦ it is said that she was ready to cut a deal with the man who hanged her father." I may be wrong, but she has always struck me as someone who doesn't really have a clear and consistent platform of her own; her positions are often whatever the overriding popular sentiment at the time is. She's a bit of an opportunist, in my opinion. And in reference to what you have said about Bhutto, Comment is free published this speculation that Bhutto and Mush are discussing a "power sharing agreement:" http://commentisfree.guardian.co.uk/simon_tisdall/2007/05/_pakistans_odd_couple_eye.html Ugh. One victory (CJ one), but several setbacks- Bhutto, the PPP's reported solidarity with Mush, and the US' unwavering support of Mush in light of the National Intelligence Estimate.
:) i had to smile at the understatement. calling BB (you may expand this handy acronym any way you please) a "bit of an opportunist" is like calling asif-z "a naughty boy" or "President" Dick Cheney "a bit of a scoundrel". and yes, i hope the feudally-minded PPP and its feudally-spirited voters can finally grow the b*lls (there's a request here to "keep it clean") to ditch the b*tch, so to speak. (i doubt it though)
damn! i hate it when over-enthusiastic systems take a colon and some other seemingly harmless keyboard character and turn it into a yellow monster like the one in the previous comment, so i'm not going to risk a grimace.
Well, what can one say about BB... in 1988, she had the world at her feet, and look what she did to that opportunity... picture: the man who hanged her father was dead, the establishment had conjured up the IJI and rigged the elections, but still couldn't stop her from winning, she had been greeted by hundreds of thousands in Lahore no less upon her arrival in 1986, and whats more, when they found out that she was pregnant, the dates of the elections were chosen to coincide with the delivery (they actually missed it by a month or so)... and the generals were unwilling to accept her as PM, but in the end they had to give in... the first female head of a Muslim state, educated, eloquent, good-looking... and look what she did... The trouble with the Bhutto clan is that they've always taken the loyalty of their voters for granted, as if its their divine right... I remember reading "The Terrorist Prince" last year, and Raja Anwar was of the opinion that this tendency afflicted not just BB but her brother too... when Bhutto pere was overthrown, some of their workers set themselves on fire to protest... the Bhuttos just took this for granted... similar examples abound... Going by their past record, the best the PPP workers/voters will do is to stay away from the polls if they're angry at BB for her deal with Musharraf... more likely, they'll come up with some sort of justification for the deal... in either case, the combined opposition, featuring the MMA will gain from this, not to mention the PML-N and the Tehrik-e-Insaf... lest we forget, they're enough to the right to be more comfortable with the MMA than with the PPP anyway... That leaves the liberal/left "represented" by a dictator and an opportunist...
>>> That leaves the liberal/left “represented” by a dictator and an opportunistâ€¦ hmmm... never thought of it like that. have to admit ol' mushy's stance has often seemed a lot more "liberal/left" than any political party's.
Maybe I should've put liberal/left in inverted commas too... :)
Guardian has an investigative piece on Musharraf/Bhutto.
sigh: http://www.nytimes.com/2007/07/22/weekinreview/22mazzetti.html?ref=world the newspaper of record, getting me down.
Kinkminos: "i had to smile at the understatement." Yeah, I know... but I am in a generous mood. Only for today, though ;)
News! She seems to have changed her mind... apparently admitting that she was contemplating a deal, she says that the Supreme Court verdict means she doesn't have to: http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=20077\23\story_23-7-2007_pg1_1 Then again, she says she might come to an arrangement if such an arrangement is necessary for ensuring fair polls... confusing?
I feel ashamed in asking this, but I don't really know what the "deal" entails. Times of India in May reported that she would be able to return if she supported the Mir Khan Jamali government. **** Umar: "Then again, she says she might come to an arrangement if such an arrangement is necessary for ensuring fair pollsâ€¦ confusing?" Not confusing, just very middle of the road. I think she is less interested in a robust, democratically active citizenry than she is in her gaining political power. Hence, the odd stance. So she's "bit of an opportunist." But now I am not in a generous mood anymore, so I say she is TOTALLY A HYPOCRITICAL OPPORTUNIST. :) http://www.thenews.com.pk/daily_detail.asp?id=52217 And speaking of this deal, here's what Nawaz Sharif had to say: "Referring to the PPP's deal with President Musharraf for the upcoming elections, he said: “It is not a matter of elections, but the restoration of democracy without the army's involvement.” “Freedom cannot be begged, but one should struggle for it,” he added. He expressed his reservations about the recent growing contacts between the PPP and the government. He said the PPP had violated the CoD, as the accord “prohibits any deal with a dictator”." http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2007%5C07%5C23%5Cstory_23-7-2007_pg7_19 On PPP's own website, in May this was published. Who's scared of the deal? Why, no one who's interested in "democracy"! And anyway, you can't bring democracy through "street protests" and of course, "President Musharraf is not averse to political deals if they bring stability and promote democracy." http://www.ppp.org.pk/Party/Party%20Issues/P_articles61.htm
Here's the original article in the Sunday Times: http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/asia/article2115356.ece There's plenty in the article that suggests she's keeping all options open... her loyalists are now even suggesting a "Chaudhry Conspiracy" against the party... lest we assume that it means the Brothers Chaudhry of Gujrat Sharif, they mean a completely different pair of Chaudhries: http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=20077\22\story_22-7-2007_pg3_3 (Aside: "King" Zahir Shah's dead... what an eventful life he's had... RIP I guess...)
"Also in grand academic tradition, I am recycling." Not "recycling," but "spreading the word." Spread the word!!!!!!!!
Musharraf says a lot of crap on the 4 man show...you have to check this out!! :D http://www.vidpk.com/view_video.php?viewkey=286785161