Who runs the show in Pakistan?

We are publishing another piece by Bilal Qureshi authored for PTH. We are publishing it with the disclaimer that the views expressed are those of the author’s. PTH Admn

I have been studying, talking about, discussing, speaking about and writing about Pakistani politics for about 20 years and I have to admit that I still don’t have a clue about who runs the show in Pakistan. However, now, I have started to understand why almost every Pakistani is obsessed with the role of intelligence agencies in Pakistan’s politics.
For example, after 17 years, Brigadier (Retd) Imtiaz has told a television channel that the army chief, the intelligence wing of the Pakistan army and other people in uniform had conspired (not sure how else to describe it) against Mutihada Quami Movement (MQM) and Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) in the past. Specifically, the charges against MQM were that MQM is interested in carving out a new county for itself, Junah Pur with the help of India. And against PPP, the army gave millions of rupees to all other parties to stop PPP from first coming into power and when despite all the hurdles, PPP was able to form the government, to topple Benazir Bhutto. This statement and these charges have literally opened Pandora’s Box in Pakistan. I have called journalists, people in the government and opposition to find out more about Brig. Imtiaz and almost everyone had awful and extremely negative things to say about him. The overall feedback about Brig. Imtiaz is that he is a dishonest man with a very dark background. His entire life he has been involved in funneling money to political leaders in order to buy their loyalties.

For those who don’t understand Pakistan’s politics, let me make this simple. In American context, it s just like the FBI or the CIA start actively participating in plans and conspiracies against the Democratic Party. Imagine the FBI or the CIA giving money to the Republican party to topple Obama presidency! Yeah, it is just like that. However, of course, in America, or any other mature democracy, this is unthinkable, but in Pakistan, this has been the norm.

At this point, I have to say this with great sadness that regretfully almost all the television channels and anchors working for these channels tilt towards right wing nationalist parties. Worse, these television anchors don’t even attempt to hide their admiration for right wing politicians and parties and openly attack the credibility of progressive and secular political parties and their workers and leaders. This is a very painful truth about contemporary political landscape in Pakistan.  But, I digress; let’s get back to the problem at hand.

Now, after the truth has come out and it has been established that both MQM and PPP, currently coalition partners are not unpatriotic and/or corrupt, we have to examine why did the army tried to stop Benazir Bhutto from coming to power and why was MQM the target and we will have to go back in history and start from 1977.

When Bhutto’s elected government was toppled and Zia, the then Army Chief took over the country, he imposed Martial Law in Pakistan, arresting all political leaders, banning political activities and gave this impression that the country was in danger. While in power, Zia actively promoted extreme right wing religious parties and prevented secular parties from challenging the religious parties in political arena. (By the way, America’s current darling and Pakistan’s next Prime Minister, Nawaz Sharif was a favorite of Zia!) Anyway, after 11 years of Martial Law when Zia died, the country had totally changed. Pakistan Army, an institute knows of secular and progressive outlook became a right wing institution. First, second and third tear officers were in deep contacts with religious parties and these officers viewed every other political party as an agent of American interest and therefore, these officers actively promoted people who were in sync with the ideology of these officers.

So, this is background for what Brig Imtiaz is saying today. The army in 1988 was of the view that MQM and PPP are not patriotic and in the view of the army, these two political parties were a security risk for Pakistan. And yes, it had everything to do with being progressive and secular because both these parties were a direct threat for the right wing parties and army officers in the country. Therefore, the extremely religious army officers and right wing political parties started promoting Nawaz Sharif, who was the right hand man of the military dictator, Zia.

A four start active duty general, who was also heading ISI at the time, brought all the political parties together except for MQM and PPP and formed an alliance called I J I, or Islami Jamhoori Itehad, which can be translated in English as  Islamic Democratic Alliance.

Now, imagine, before the 2008 presidential elections, GENERAL PATRIAUS, while in uniform, brings everyone opposed to Barack Obama together, gives them millions of dollars to stop Obama from winning the election. Even more pathetic, once failed to stop Obama from becoming president, GENERAL PATRIAUS continues to conspire against Obama and finally succeeds in overthrowing Obama Presidency, while claiming that the country was in danger because of Obama and the corruption was on the rise, etc. You can’t imagine Patriaus doing it, right? But this is exactly what happened here in Pakistan. The army chief, the head of ISI and countless other civilians and active duty military officers participated in this plot to overthrow Benazir democratically elected government.

But Benazir and MQM proved too tough and too resilient and their workers refused to give up on democracy. So, a new strategy was adopted. First, attack Benazir’s husband (currently Pakistan’s President, Asif Zardari) as a corrupt man and attack MQM as a party that thrives on violence and wants an independent country like Singapore with the help of India. For this purpose the establishment approached two major news organizations in Pakistan to plant fake stories about Zardari’s corruption and MQM’s alleged ties to India, but these two news organizations refused to play along. As a back up, a small, local (not even regional) paper in Hyderabad, Sindh was approached and because of massive cash infusion, this paper started carrying stories about Zardari’s corruption without providing any sources or evidence.

Once in print, even in a no-name paper like this one, every other paper across Pakistan would pick up and re-print these fake corruption stories and this became the standard practice. These attacks on Zardari were repeated with such intensity that people, both in Pakistan and abroad started buying into this line of attack and a big part of Pakistan actually started viewing Zardari as a man who takes money; kick backs, commission, even though, to this date, not even a single charge against Zardari has been proven in court of law.

So, with this background, the intelligence agencies and the army chief at the time successfully defeated progressive political parties and paved the way for Zia’s reminisce, i.e. Nawaz Sharif. And this is precisely what Brig Imtiaz is talking about. It is hard to understand why Imtiaz came forward with this, but after talking to people who know something about Imtiaz, I know that it is not because he wants to set the record straight. There is something else at play, which don’t know, but sooner or later will come out.

Till then, stay tuned!

38 Comments

Filed under Army, Democracy, History, Pakistan, Politics

38 responses to “Who runs the show in Pakistan?

  1. karun

    interesting take….personally i think zardari makes the most friendly overtures to India.

  2. Bloody Civilian

    “Junah Pur” = jinnahpur.

    the author may want to investigate maj amir’s establishing contacts with mr zardari. the same maj amir of TNSM fame.. and involvement in the so-called efforts to get pols to topple bb’s first govt. he of course claims that he was doing no more than regualr info gathering in his official capacity and would have duly submitted the info to the govt if asked.

    indeed, zardari is innocent until proven guilty. but, just to point out a technicality, in all fairness, gen asad durrani’s affidavit to the court also does not amount to a guilty verdict. the case is yet to be concluded. similarly, naseerullah babur’s statement in parliament as interior minister is no judicial verdict.

  3. neel123

    All the charade of democracy aside, it is the Army and the ISI that are the real power centres in Pakistan and call the shots on all important issues.

    Zardari and Jilani have their limits clearly marked out by the men in the uniform.

    This is not going to change as long as the Americans want it to be this way.

  4. Mustafa Shaban

    neel123:

    This is not true it is the other way around. Zardari and Gilani calls the shots because the Americans want them 2. How come after Musharraf a lot more concessions were given to US and India??

  5. IM

    ^^ Mustafa this moron neel123 is an Indian…don’t u read his ignorant comments at PKKH!

  6. kara

    Dear Bilal,

    What ever you have written in your article one thing is sure that you don’t think that PPP and MQM are not the corrupt parties. They all are innocents. JINNAHPUR conspiracy was a truth. If you live in Karachi and you have real contacts then go and ask the HAQEEQI walas about the JINNAHPUR. They will tell you the real story about JINNAHPUR. Yes, brig. (r) Imtiaz is not a credible person to believe on but still there are skeletons in cupboards of every party.

    In this article you are trying to portray Mr.10% as Mr. Clean which is not possible as every body knows he is corrupt and as they say nothing is impossible in Pakistan they its not impossible to destroy the proofs of zardari and his wife BB’s corruption. Ask, Altaf hussain why he is hiding in UK if he is a true leader? Because he ran away from Karachi when his own party members shot him when he was admitted in hospital due to his fake illness. They all are pack of liars. Democracy is the best way to destroy any nation or a country.

  7. Ali Abbas

    Kara,

    I live in Karachi and while I am not Pro-MQM, the Jinnahpur allegation remains unproven. As for the Haqiqis, they are known to have been used as gun men by the religious parties for not only settling scores with the MQM but also in target killing the minority Shias.

    You wrote: “Democracy is the best way to destroy any nation or a country.”

    Yeh, we should all keep that in mind when evaluating the various indices that routinely place the Non-Democratic totalitarian states at the bottom in terms of literacy, rights and tecnological achievements and the democracies near the top.

    Kara’s thinking is reflective of many of the elites in Pakistan who now parade themselves as “civil society” and use Lefty speak gleaned from the latest Znet articles to hide their right-wing agendas.

  8. Mustafa Shaban

    IM: neel123 has got a very wrong idea….not becuase he is indian but because his viewpoint has been created by the conventional indian media and indian schools. I have nothing against any peoples race or religion. Indians are very nice people. It is only the elite that is oppressive.

  9. neel123

    @ Mustafa Shaban,

    A simple case point is bringing the culprits of Mumbai massacre to justice.

    Why does India have to provide all the proof against those who are Pakistanis, sitting in Pakistan, operating from Pakistan, with the full knowledge of the Pakistani establishment ?

    If Osama Bin Laden is captured today, what proof will anybody have against him, except that he is the ideological head of Al-Qaeda ? If that is so, then what proof do you Pakistanis need against Hafiz Saeed, who openly preaches terrorism against India ?

    It is simple, the Pak Army and the ISI will not act against their tool of foreign policy against India. So the Pakistani Govt. can do nothing except providing leap service.

  10. Mustafa Shaban

    neel123:

    1. India laid the accusation. In international law, the rule for the accused: Innocent until proven guilty.

    2. India prepared a dossier highlighting thier view of the massacre. Pakistan government accepted the claims due to thier slavish mentality. Some parts of media especially Brasstacks.pk wrote a counter dossier, which refuted and successfully debunked all the Indian accusations and view points through facts, statistics, and other stuff. (I will post the counter dossier later if you want)

    3. You are absolutely right on OBL. That is becuase he never had anything t do with 9/11. It was a false flag attack, if you want the evidence I will post it for you as well. I do not know much about Hafiz Saeed.

    4. Pakistan goverment is not in line with ISI and Army at all. The army and ISI clearly know what really happened while the Pakistan gov’t is in state of denial, or are just plain lying.

  11. neel123

    @ Mustafa Shaban,

    You are simply playing with words, just like the Pakistani ministers.

    You have not answered why India has to provide proof against the Pakistani criminals.

    You guys are playing game, so will India.

  12. hayyer

    Neel is bigoted. His argument should be phrased this way.
    When a crime is committed the police usually ask for custodial interrogation of the accused. They arrest people based on evidence collected from the scene of the crime or interrogate them without arresting them. Only after that is can a complete picture be built with supporting evidence. The case is then presented to court.
    Pakistan asks India to make a complete fool proof case based only on the scene of the crime. It allows custodial interrogation to China, Iran, and the US but not India.

  13. Mustafa Shaban

    good point hayyer

  14. Rakesh

    @hayyer

    “It allows custodial interrogation to China, Iran, and the US but not India.”

    You have proved the point yourself about who is in control in Pakistan.

  15. yasserlatifhamdani

    The American Military-Industrial Complex has always supported and promoted the Republican Party.

    In America the whole thing has been legalized through campaign contributions.

    Also let us not forget the military establishment’s support of the PPP in 1970 elections as a counter-weight to the Awami League.

  16. Mustafa Shaban

    Yasser: I disagree, the american military industrial complex supports both democrat and republican parties. It lobbies all congressman. There is hardly any significant difference between republican and democrat

  17. Humpak

    have you ever thought what will be the outcome of criticizing Pak army and intelligence agencies?

    it seems that one day this freedom of expression will snatch our freedom and our national integrity away from our selves and will leave us at the mercy of the champions of democracy and freedom of expression such as America who itself ruled by CIA and Zionists.

    it is a fact that when our so called librels and democratic minds have nothing to write, they turned their guns towards pak army and ISI, which is sell out well in international market of thugs.

  18. PMA

    Humpak (September 9, 2009 at 2:59 pm):

    Defaming Defence Forces of Pakistan is an all time hobby with many, both inside and outside the country. One may not expect any better from the outsiders, but unfortunately there are many Pakistanis who will not lift a finger for their country expect to point out the faults of the brave men and women of Pak Armed Forces.

  19. D_a_n

    @neel123

    ‘leap service’….nice!🙂

  20. neel123

    @ D_a_n,

    Just a typo, nothing exciting.

    Read it as lip, okay !

  21. Bloody Civilian

    Defaming Defence Forces of Pakistan is an all time hobby with many, both inside and outside the country

    an occupational hazard when the brass hats make it an all time hobby to take over political control? in defiance of law and the constitution. it is a result of them failing in their duty to protect the brave men and woman from politics. it is them who let down the institution without hesitation, shame or regret. defamation? welcome to the political world.

  22. D_a_n

    @ BC

    I believe we had a similar discussion before🙂

    this criticism wouldn’t sound half as hypocritical if it didn’t come from a political class that goes out of it’s way to provide legitimacy military take overs for years and years…

    It wouldn’t sound half as hyocritical if this criticism wasn’t trumpeted loudest by a political class that organizes physical assaults on the supreme court and then pretends it never happened…

    It wouldn’t sound half as hypocritical if not for a political class that relishes titles of CMLA …

    Etc etc etc🙂

  23. D_a_n

    @ neel123

    not exciting at all…my intention was only to see the comical result of your typo

    Stupid mistakes by bigots are always funny🙂

  24. Bloody Civilian

    organizes physical assaults on the supreme court and then pretends it never happened…

    including javed hashmi who spent 5 years in prison.. and underwent physical torture. and is one of those named in gen asad durrani’s mehrangate affidavit.

    political class that relishes titles of CMLA…

    and the present PM too spent 5 years in prison, rather than support an illegal coup.

    the megalomaniac cmla ended up with a noose round his neck. can you imagine anything remotely similar happening to megalomaniac military usurper? or any kind of accountability? even an income tax enquiry? remember mush’s exempting certain ‘institutions’ from his income tax campaign?? can you imagine a corps commander being made accountable for not standing for the consitution and the rule of law? or an ex-ISI director daring to submit an affidavit with some general’s financial dealings being mentioned? even a dead general… say akhtar abdur rehman or zia? or even how did humayun and ejaz become millionaires?

    how many years now since we’ve been asking for night vision goggles for our brave men? how much have the brass hats spent on unnecessary luxuries in those years? how much do these goggles cost after all?

    why does the defence expense has to be a single line item? why can’t there be a legitimate degree of auditing? why shouldn’t there be suspicion then about what is actually spent on luxuries and how much on essentials?

    i’m rooting for the rights of the same brave men and women of our security forces, be they at the front, or in the military hospitals, or wherever they’re bravely and admirably doing their duty, and even going beyond the call of duty. i’ve absolutely no disagreement with you there.

  25. Bloody Civilian

    D_a_n

    i remember not only having the same debate with you, but also conceding your point, unreservedly: this is NOT the time to criticise. but the more extreme attempts by some to do the opposite, in the extreme, trying to take undue advantage of these very trying and difficult time for all of us, also must be challenged, albeit sparingly.

    as an aside: i wish that these ex-forces guys we have on tv these days talking of mehrangate and how all pols except the ones in govt today are corrupt and who met bin laden or hikmatyar when.. would concentrate on supporting our brave soldiers and taking the lead in honouring them where, sadly, many of us have been found wanting.

  26. D_a_n

    @ BC…

    again, as I said previously as well, I’d never really argue against the kind of accountability that you ask for…no patriot would be be against it…

    my only point is that until and unless the Political class unreservedly admit and renounce their actions that were carried out for purely personal benefit in service of dictators again and again and again…..
    their criticism of any military rule will ring infinitely hypocritical….

    I mean for eaxmple how on God’s earth does Nawaz Sharif and Co. have legs to stand on when they took money (and a pittance at that) to form the IJI and what not..
    I dont believe anyone put guns to their heads to take that money. The political class of Pakistan has been faced with the these choices…and everytime have deliberately made the incorrect choice..purely for profit…financial or political. They had prices (incredibly low it now appears) and that price was met with ease time and again…

    It is my belief, that if the majority of Pakistan’s political class had decided on principle never to provide legitimacy to military rule by not serving under, for or with such governments…Ayub’s rule would have been much shorter and if even he had lasted as long as he did…Yahya would have been the last of the lot. Again, this is my personal Opinion.
    It is just too hard to hold onto power for that long otherwise.

    So my only point is that lets not allow the current political class to lecture us or anyone on what was and is constitutional or legal or corrupt till they at the very least own up to their own sordid past and gain the higher moral ground. But no. We dont even have honour among thieves here.

    You know, BC, I never fault the man offering the bribe. I always fault the man accepting the bribe for he is the one who has the ultimate choice in most cases.

    A little story if you will…..
    Both my Grandfathers were Majors at the time of the first martial law and were serving in the NWFP. In their districts; they were asked to assume civil powers of magistrates etc (im not really sure of the exact function). The minute they did so, they began to be offered immense (for that time) amounts of money to intercede on behalf of people faces criminal charges….murder charges….who were in police custody or what not. They kept refusing but a time came when both of them put in for transfers to positions where they would have no civilian interactions. They told their higher ups that they dont want to be in a position where they are offered an amount that they might not be able to refuse.

    They got their postings out and that was that. They had choices and made the right one. I want the political class to start making the same type of choices.

    I believe the permanent power of the perception of legitimacy trumps any temporary power that flows from the barrel of a gun.

    PS:Otherwise one just ends up sounding like a hypocrite Roedad Khan writing against Musharraf but ignoring his own yeoman service to Zia.

  27. D_a_n

    @ BC…

    ‘including javed hashmi who spent 5 years in prison.. and underwent physical torture.’

    really? didnt he go to Jail for inciting the Army to Mutiny or Sedition?

    and tortured while in Prison? I have my doubts on that. Is that confirmed?

  28. Bloody Civilian

    D_a_n

    if i could answer the last point first. the issue is not whether hashmi was guilty or not. i accept the verdict of the court. the question is, why is no general, e.g. corps commanders, found guilty of treason in running roughshod over the constitution.. or aiding and abetting therein? other than hashmi’s own word about the physical torture.. i’ve nusrat javed giving some grim descriptions. that’s it.

    as for your view about bribery…

    1. any tom, dick and harry can become a politician (e.g bilawal bhutto, hamza sharif, ejazulhaq, or rehman malik). but a general is supposed to have gone through institutional training and scrutiny that ought to be able to teach him about the sanctity of the constitution and rule of law. not just one, but the whole senior command seem to have a thoroughly unprofessional attitude about the whole thing. they have no idea that countries are saved by the system, not men. that if pakistan cannot survive as a civilian country, then it does not deserve to survive at all. any military ‘saviours’ only hasten the demise. but i digress.

    2. with the only requirement to being a politician being… well… nothing, generals will always be able to find willing legitimisers. if there is ever a danger of the political classes running out of scum, all the generals need to do is dig a bit deeper. NAB, and making examples like spells in attock and (in the past) lahore fort and even a hanging also help in digging out scum. is there similar ‘pressure’ on generals to break the law? your grandfathers did the right thing, admirably. but to have stayed on and continue to show their mettle would have been even better. but i totally understand and appreciate their humility. i am just trying to make a more general point. since anybody can be a politician, there is an endless supply of barrister saif, tariq aziz, m.ali durrani, wasi zafar etc. etc. in any country, not just pakistan. bribery has not brought any countries down yet. arbitrary power in defiance of rule of law has and always will.

    judges and even bureaucrats have not enjoyed unquestioned institutional supremacy. judges get sent home, most usually and easily by military dictators. judges like safdar shah (and, for a while, iftikhar ch) have suffered worse treatment. what does that do to the institution’s morale?

    both ayub (303 or was it 313 dismissed?) and bhutto (1303?) cut the bureaucracy down to size. but the army is above, by some distance, all other national institutions. even yahya et al had to leave because his own officers had tanks on GT road headed towards islamabad. and even then, yahya was burried with full military honour.

    this is standing the whole system on its head. destroying the very fabric of the state. bribery is a mere lubricant to the state machinery, in contrast.

    democracy is expected to start from the bottom, with scum, and evolve through regular elections.. over some decades. voters learning something new with each election. with every political movement, development, campaign. military rule kills the evolutionary processes.

    on the other hand, an army is not expected to evolve from such sham and dark beginings. it has to start, from day one, from a decent level of professionalism and always maintain that minimum level. there can be no professionalism, worthy of the name, if those that the institution selects to lead it have no respect for rule of law. therefore, they have no loyalty to the prestige and wellbeing of their own institution and the men and women who serve it. what’s worse, they have no loyalty to the country that they have taken an oath to defend. that is, if the case i’ve put for civilian vs military dictatorship holds water.

    the only civilian despot that there was a mass movement against (albeit a minority of the population actually supported it) was bhutto. we were never to know what might have become of it since zia, with the support of his GHQ, intervened. was the silent majority going to come out against the PNA and it’s religiosity? were the people going to march to the PM house in their millions and physically drag out bhutto? would the FSF have decalred war on its in people and a legitimate and limited intervention by the national army, in that case, would have been welcomed? we’d never know. like we wouldn’t about how far nawaz sharif’s ameer-ul-momineen plans would have degenerated and how the people would have reacted. when we have military despots like ayub or mush, people take it upon themselves to rid themselves of them. but when, and if, we have civilian despots… we look to rawalpindi. this is how ayub started the process of killing democracy even before it had a chance to evolve. GHQ has continued in ayub’s footsteps and no wonder the evolution and development of democracy and all civilian institutions is not only stymied and skewed by the power of the GHQ… even institutions with some semblance of ‘pride’ and ‘ownership’ lie in tatters. there is only one institution remaining in the country with a keen sense of ownership and pride.

  29. PMA

    BC: You have, as always made your point passionately. Looking from outside, I find the ‘military brass’ as well as the ‘political class’ guilty of the crimes you have pointed out. The two most prominent ‘political houses’ of Pakistan today are the product of the military regimes of Ayub and Zia. Back in the sixties, the father and uncle of Nawaz Sharif provided ‘gondas’ to the Ayub regime for ‘civil control’. ZAB was hand picked by Iskandar Mirza and the Ayub. Why ZAB did not refuse to serve under a military dictator. Why NS became an ‘adopted son’ of Zia. There is not a single ‘political house’ in Pakistan that has not collaborated with and served under the military rulers of Pakistan. And I disagree that there is a ‘military class’ and a ‘political class’ in Pakistan. The select group of officers that rises above the level of a major is very often linked to the political-industrial-bureaucratic ‘ruling class’ of Pakistan. If you look deeper you will find that all those belonging to the ‘ruling class’ of Pakistan are related to each other; if not originally they become so to protect their ‘class interest’. Therefore my friend it is futile to defend one or the other ‘oligarchs’ of Pakistan. But my point is that the thousands of brave men and women of the Pak Armed Forces are not deserving of the ridicule and scorn that has become fashionable in my unfortunate country. They deserve our gratitude. They die for us and protect our ass anytime it is in danger, both from internal and external threats. You want to criticize the ‘ruling class’ because of its excesses, then do by all means. But please stop saying ‘army this and army that’. Pak Armed Forces are very important for and essential to the existence of Pakistan. Please do not join the ranks of the enemies of Pakistan by demonising the Armed Forces of Pakistan. Such acts are considered treason in the civilized world, just like acts of overthrowing elected government, dismissing army chief when out of country on official trip, and attacking supreme court would be.

  30. Bloody Civilian

    PMA sb

    The two most prominent ‘political houses’ of Pakistan today are the product of the military regimes of Ayub and Zia

    had it not been for ayub, we may have had no political houses at all… or worse.. a house of suhrawardy, or even of jinnah. regardless that both were childless… true democrats do not establish political houses/dynasties.

    in any case, had true political potential and talent been allowed to develop, for all we know the ‘house of bhutto’ might have done no better than being the most educated members of local govt.. in larkana.

    If you look deeper you will find that all those belonging to the ‘ruling class’ of Pakistan are related to each other; if not originally they become so to protect their ‘class interest’.

    generals tend to marry their kids to other generals’ kids. but mush and zia, per se, were middle class. the lower end of middle class in zia’s case. do we still have the scions (or sons-in-law) of the princely houses of british india in the GHQ? i don;t know about now but… exceptions like gen habibullah khan had ayub’s son marrying his daughter and his became one of the richer ‘business houses’ of pakistan.

    but still, army officers come from the middle class, by and large. but, as khawaja asif pointed out in parliament in 2006, feudelism is not as much how much land you own but a mentality. and who can have a more feudel mentality who can claim for themselves a greater right to rule than any one else.. and think nothing of the constitution and rule of law. it’s the deudel mentality in its most unadulterated form.

    You want to criticize the ‘ruling class’ because of its excesses, then do by all means. But please stop saying ‘army this and army that’

    kindly re-read my posts. also, which oligarch or the other did i try to defend? or defend sharif’s storming of the supreme court? btw, how is dismissing the army chief, regardless of where he or she is at the time, treason… on its own… by any stretch of the law?? not that i’ve defended that either. civilised countries, one would hope, are not selective about the application of law and delivering justice.

    an aside: bhutto, for a couple of years, was the only civilian after jinnah approaching something
    like absolute power (in jinnah’s case it was moral power, bhutto got it by default in a country in utter disarray). instead of strengthening democracy, he sent the army in to baluchistan instead. weakening the democratic fabric, whatever there was, and harming the army too.

    Please do not join the ranks of the enemies of Pakistan by demonising the Armed Forces of Pakistan

    please don’t misread or misrepresent what i’ve said. identifying the enemies of the Armed Forces of Pakistan is not demonising any one. in fact something true friends of the Armed Forces of Pakistan and of Pakistan would try and do. as for certificates of patriotism and accusations of treason… the day i start caring for either is when i would start doubting my loyalty to my country and my honesty towards her.

  31. Bloody Civilian

    apologies for the many typos. ‘hope none are too serious. e.g. “deudel” = feudel

  32. Bloody Civilian

    Why ZAB did not refuse to serve under a military dictator. Why NS became an ‘adopted son’ of Zia.

    i’ve addressed that a couple of posts above, where i talked of the ease of finding scum. but by what logic or sense of justice do aiders and abetters become worse than the principal criminal?

  33. neel123

    @ D_a_n

    Quote – “I mean for eaxmple how on God’s earth does Nawaz Sharif and Co. have legs to stand on when they took money ”

    eaxmple – nice !

  34. Hayyer

    I used to believe that it was undemocratic for sons of political leaders who held office to aspire to that office. But as I grew wiser I realized that sons of army officers join the army, sons and daughters of actors become actors themselves, children of civil servants become civil servants, singers train their offspring in their own gharanas, and so on.
    Should sons of prime ministers become prime ministers? They cant unless they are voted in. Who votes them in?

  35. D_a_n

    @ neel123

    good going buddy boy!!! Yes that was quite horrible. In my defence I’ll say that posting that from handset during a rather dull meeting produced that one…

    But you know…I still think leap service was funnier. And your not nearly as clever as you think you are..not nearly son.

    ps: when 2 or more officers are talking eg, myself, BC, PMA Sb… Laskers (ie, you) should keep their mouths shut till asked otherwise.

  36. Bloody Civilian

    They cant unless they are voted in. Who votes them in?

    those who think them the least bad of a limited choice.

    even pak, despite everything, has two – i.e. the minimum required – national level, mainstream political parties. the dynasties stay in ‘power’ by styming democracy within the party (some more than others) and vigorously checking and weeding out any potential competition from within the party. so they keep the party weak, as far as leadership material is concerned, in order to keep themselves strong.

  37. Hayyer

    BC:
    “those who think them the least bad of a limited choice.”
    Actually it is more than that. There is the media that builds them up, the public intellectuals who are willing to prostitute themselves in the hope of office, the party machine that create the illusion of value when there is none, and most of all the gullible voters who believe the propaganda.
    Our governments mirror us. We get what we deserve.

  38. Munawar

    Slightly irrelevant but interesting article;

    Islam Inc. Copyright © 2009

    Copyright gives the author of an original work exclusive right for a certain time period in relation to that work, including its publication, distribution and adaptation, after which time the work is said to enter the public domain.

    Readers must be surprised to see the implementation of copyright concept in the religion of truth revealed by Allah that actually has no connection with materialism but it’s a fact, in Pakistan Islam has been perceived as a corporation that exist as a product of corporate law (Pakistan’s Constitution), and its rules balance the interests of the management (Religious Fanatics) who solely operate the Islamic corporation in Pakistan. Creditors(Islamic sects) who loan its goods, services; shareholders (Madarsa Owners) that invest their capital (Madarsah Education) and the employees (Jihadi Brigade) who contribute their labor to achieve and safeguard vested interests of Islam Inc.

    pakistandesk.com/?p=2651