Concerned political newsmakers across Pakistan are crying wolf. Nobody can predict the future — what is next after Sharif’s demise. The emerging political culture of ‘blame game’ is no surprise to any rational observers of Pakistan’s modern history. It typifies what can go terribly wrong when the so-called politicians-turned-egoistic authoritarians are the assumed masters of the nation’s affairs for over fifty years. The consciousness of moral and intellectual political behaviour sinks to its lowest ebb in comparative global affairs.
The deliberate evolution of corrupt political culture is the hallmark of Pakistan’s national political life. Despite unchallengeable hard evidence, the nation and its ruling elite are not willing to face the critical mirror of what went wrong and who should be blamed and how to change the vicious and vindictive culture into a viable system of political governance for the greater good of the people. For over half a century, Pakistanis have not produced any leader who may lead the nation to a promising future. Every now and then, the unwanted military interventions and coups have incapacitated the natural powers and energies of the body of Pakistan.
A left-over skeleton devoid of essential chemistry can be manipulated and broken by the few self-centered competing antagonists. Some two decades ago, “Pakistan: Enigma of Change” (Media Monitors Network-USA) by this author offered the proactive thinking and applied workable scenario for change and institutionalized development leading to a sustainable future. This should have happened in a culture of positive thinking where the elite and the masses are open to listening and learning of their pitfalls and willing to use new thinking and creative strategies for change and development of public-oriented new institutions. It could not have happened in a society devoid of reason and critical thinking and most importantly, abhorrent to rational change. The continued corrupt political culture and people who manage it cannot be the credible future-tellers.
What Went Wrong?
Most disastrous and wasteful time of Pakistan’s history has been consumed by the military dictators. None had any imagination for political change and national development. All military coups proved catastrophic for the future of the nation. Those who participated and collaborated with the dictators were equally guilty of crimes against the people of Pakistan. The invaluable time and precious opportunities they stole for change and development can never be returned to the nation’s lifelines. All dictators are dead against their wishes except the Bhuttos, Sharifs, Zardaris and, of course, Pervez Musharaf. The separation of East Pakistan was a fatal blow to the integrity of the nation. It was deliberate and planned by Z.A. Bhutto and General Yahya Khan — the chief conspirators. The political power should have been transferred systematically to Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. But instead, greed of power, fear of the unknown and political vindictiveness resulted in Pakistan’s dismemberment. Bhuttos continued to enjoin bloody history of political intrigues and killings to maintain the political power. Did the elite or the nation learn anything useful from this horrible tragedy of its own making?
Another evil strand can be found in the feelings of hatred and fear between the masses of former East Pakistan (Bangladesh) and West Pakistan’s ruling elite. The Bengalis were simple, better educated and dedicated to Islamic values and, indeed, they belonged to a morally superior intellectual culture where the idea of an independent Pakistan grew out of their thinking and futuristic imagination. Within the concept of One Nation, their representation was low and their presence often unappreciated by the West Pakistani elite. Did the Pakistani elite not know what was in waiting for their drudgery and wickedness to the interests of the masses? What is the cure to political indifference and systematically ordained political corruption of the few? Is Pakistan on a threshold of political change or a new sustainable political culture for the future?
Traitors are within, not elsewhere
In 2011, one CIA operative contractor Raymond Davis killed two innocent Pakistanis in Lahore. President Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton identified Davis as a US ‘diplomat’. The truth could not have been farther than this. The then President Asif Ali Zaradri — “our man in Islamabad,” as the US administration used to call him — intervened to stop prosecution against Mr Davis and to set him free. None of these figures had any sense of rationality or accountability to the law of Pakistan.
Gordon Duff, spotlights the episode of Raymond Davis (Diplomat, Drug Mule or Terrorist: Veterans Today 2/18/2011). President Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton called him a “diplomat”, while, in reality, he was a CIA operative contractor involved in subversive and illegal activities across that land of the poor and the deprived, managed by the US aid dollars including the Pakistani government. “We now call it diplomacy,” explains Gordon Duff, “and the thugs are “diplomats.”
The Nation Looks for Political Change
Pakistan’s problem rests with power politics. Those who grab the power through intrigues, conspiracies, military coups, sectarian killings and large socioeconomic disruptions do not foresee any exit to their hegemonic control. These are household names of hatred and disgrace to sane Pakistanis. The nation that allows criminally indicted and most corrupt people to hold offices of national governance and responsibility cannot be viewed as a nation of moral values and honour. This is how East Pakistan was lost. The political curse and disintegration of the economic, social, moral and intellectual culture goes on without an end in sight.
Unless sane minds in Pakistan reactivate their thoughts and energies for a navigational change, the nation will remain at critical crossroads for its own fragmentation and by its own so-called ‘political leaders’. How to change the political cruelty and tyranny of the few into a new value-based political system of institutions, responsible leadership and governance? Pakistan desperately needs people of new, educated generation enriched with proactive vision, fresh ideas and political acumen to safeguard the freedom of the nation from going to utter chaos and ruins. Those who are part of the problems cannot be part of the solutions. Foreigners will not help Pakistan; their plans are working to disintegrate Pakistan. Nation’s own future is at stake. Andrew Gavin Marshall “Imperial Eye on Pakistan — Pakistan in Pieces, Part 1 (Global Research: 5/28/2011), states that “in December of 2000, the CIA released a report of global trends to the year 2015, which stated that by 2015, “Pakistan will be more fractious, isolated and dependent on international financial assistance.”
Further, it was predicted, that Pakistan “will not recover easily from decades of political and economic mismanagement, divisive politics, lawlessness, corruption and ethnic friction. Nascent democratic reforms will produce little change in the face of opposition from an entrenched political elite and radical Islamic parties.
American foreign policy makers view the Pakistani politicians and generals as beggars, bootlickers who will perform all kind of acts to please the master – the one who calls them an ally when needed but will stab Pakistanis in the back when they become a liability. Disillusioned and disconnected with its roots, Pakistan continues to move forward — not towards change, normalcy and progress but towards tragic events fomenting planned deaths of the citizenry, destruction of the social, economic and political infrastructures, incapacitated and broken lifelines and ultimately to become a battleground for mindless ethnic and regional divides and national collapse. Taliban (TTP) are fighting against the ideology of Pakistan. If these trends resulting from the inhumane and barbaric policies and practices of the ruling elite remain in the pipeline, the nation could, God forbid, end up losing its freedom and integrity. You might wonder, “Is the problem insolvable?”
The Taliban appear to be a collection of rogue and loose groupings of many associations. Some could well be doing the proxy wars on behalf of the foreign master chipping in dollars and obsolete weapons left over across the old Afghan graveyards. Mr Sharif and his comrades may not be competent enough, and they have no foresight how to manage the hidden conspiracies of the few against many impinging on the public nerve for a decade.
In situations of emergencies, competent leaders offer hope and build trust of the nation to articulate workable remedies. But Pakistani politicians are used to blame game, often pointing fingers at India and others for their failure as appears to be the case in Balochistan. Pakistan is being destabilized and dehumanized by its own wicked, so-called leaders who lack understanding of the ideology of the Muslim nation. Pakistan’s future is not linked to Nawaz Sharif or any peace deal with the TTP. The Government and the Taliban are buying time and opportunities to readjust to the changing geo-political climate of the region. America is in the process to take out its Nato-led forces from Afghanistan. Pakistani officials and the TTP would hurry to fill the gap and to acquire upper hand in future strategic priorities. Pakistan’s security forces are relentlessly watching which way to turn the table and to counteract the tide of bloody insurgency dipping into the political psyche of Pakistani culture.
How can there be a change in the political cruelty and tyranny of the few? The 2014 massive public protests and demonstrations at Islamabad went out with no positive change or achievements. Undoubtedly Sharif’s regime killed innocent civilians during and prior to the peaceful demonstrations at Lahore and stole money into foreign accounts. But nobody is held accountable in a court of law. Western analysts claim Pakistan to be a ‘failing state’ as it is run by dubious political-military elite. Pakistani leaders exhibit deafening silence to respond to the US-European accusations. Often when sadistic politicians cannot solve one set of problems, they could come up with smart but naïve ideas to create more critical problems to distract the masses. What is the solution to the morally and intellectually sickening political culture of Pakistani politics? In view of the obvious failure of the current regime under Nawaz Sharif, the conscientious people and organized political establishments should initiate action to set up a new Government of National Unity replacing Nawaz Sharif with a non-partisan, intelligent and honest leadership. This appears to be the urgent political shift to restore normalcy and sustainable political governance. It is hard to expect the National Assembly to act against Sharif, only to reaffirm its irrelevance and incompetence being a stooge of the rulers and unable to provide workable democratic option for change — when facts of life warrant a change, the responsible institutions must respond to facilitate change to safeguard the national interests, freedom and integrity of the country.