Thursday, December 27, 2007

Bark: The season of goodwill?

This news story has a sense of seeming inevitability about it. Pakistan's been a civil war waiting to happen since Benazir Bhutto returned from exile in Dubai. Yet another "victory" for American foreign policy, I'm afraid. I've not been a fan of Musharraf since he jumped so quickly into bed with Dubya after the 9/11 attacks, and he's probably done more to undermine democracy in Pakistan over the last five years than the Taleban and Al Qaida combined. No doubt there'll be conspiracies flying around that Musharraf sactioned the attack, but to be fair, I think there are enough extremists in Pakistan to have carried out the attack without government help. Though in a sense, I suppose the government did play it's part: it's the US-friendly policies of the Musharraf government since the overthrow of the Taleban in Afghanistan that has created such an atmosphere of unrest in Pakistan in the first place.

I had a lot of respect for Benazir Bhutto, despite the accusations of corruption... from what I saw (dating back to her first stint as Prime Minister when she paid a visit to Maggie Thatcher in the early '90s) she always conducted herself with a lot of dignity and, I believe, integrity. So her death is a great loss, if not entirely unexpected.

So what now for Pakistan? Dark times, I fear. But this is what happens when you ally yourself with a military dictator for politically expedient purposes. It's just a shame that it's never the people that form the expedient alliance that end up ulitmately paying the price...
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