Thursday, March 19, 2009

Pakistan being shaped by popular will - and this is NOT helpful to the US

The Guardian put out a fantastic article by Mohsin Hamid today titled Pakistan is being shaped by popular will as never before.

It lays out the dillema that the US and the Western world faces as the Pakistani people assert their will and actually manage to force change in the judiciary and to stop some of the actions of the corrupt President Zardari.

Save Judiciary, Save Pakistan!

That should be good, right? After all, this seems to be the growth of democracy in Pakistan.

The problem is that the general Pakistani populace hates the U.S. war in Afghanistan and wants to do their best to oppose the U.S. presence there. Right now Zardari supports Obama and the war (quietly, at least), probably becuase he gets money of the deal. If the people continue to show their hand we will be in the same dillemma we were in when Hamas won the elections in Gaza. With the victory of democracy, people will have spoken and chosen AGAINST us, against U.S. public policy.


One instance is what just happened in Swat. The papers made it sound like Pakistan was implementing Sharia law in Swat. No, they simply grudgingly allowed the local elections to implement Sharia law. It was the will of the people... the government decided to go along with it.

This quote is striking

For the rest of the world, and particularly the US, Britain and Nato, the choice
is becoming increasingly stark. If a war fought by democracies for control
of Afghanistan, a country of 30 million people, requires for its successful
prosecution the undermining of democracy in Pakistan, a country of 170
million, is that really a price worth paying?

Quran Class at Pir Sohawa Mosque, Pakistan

1 comment:

Mason said...

You bring up a very difficult issue here.
It makes you wonder just how serious we are about the ‘freedom and democracy’ dogma that U.S. leaders promote.
It seems more like we are in favor of other people’s freedom when it is convenient to our interests, but are also willing to override the rights of others when it suits our purposes.