Posts Tagged ‘Nawaz Sharif’

People who change their Shaheed.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Time has changed in Pakistan; yesterday victims of suicide bombing were mentioned as “Jaan-ba-Haq” but today Pakistani media call them “Shaheed”.

Yesterday, a Pakistani soldier who died while fighting with Talibans was a “dead” to Pakistani media but today they mention him as “Shaheed”.

Yesterday, for Pakistani media and for so called leaders, Army was killing its own people in FATA but today they stand behind Army and praise its actions.

In 2003, same army launched a similar military operation in same Waziristan’s same capital city – Wana – against same Talibans to fight the same War on Terrorism, but then those who were killed (i.e. Talibans) by Pakistan Army were “Shaheed” for many. And our soldiers who lost their lives they were just “were killed” for us.

It’s funny to see that same so called political leaders and so called “vibrant” media is supporting Pakistani Army today who opposed similar military actions in past.

Who are these people who change “Shaheeds” with the time?  Would they ever admit if they were wrong yesterday or they are wrong today?

I wonder if we had saved any lives, if we have had prevented any suicide bomber, if we have had not seen any incidents like GHQ if – AND ONLY IF – all these people had supported “Wana operation” in 2003 and made it a success.

What the war is about? (Part 3)

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Courtesy: Daily Jang (08-Oct-2009)

Long March: Another Historic Decision?

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Hearing the news that Zardari government has decided to restore judges, I was relieved; I was relieved because country was saved from going into turmoil and uproar by Zardari deciding to retreat from his stance. Watching live coverage of jubilations and celebrations; people dancing on the streets, distributing sweets, excitement was everywhere, I was thinking if all these excited will ever justice or they just have been robbed again in the name of Justice. I could not convince myself that this was all about independent judiciary.

Though everyone who supported Lawyers’ movement claims that it is a “Movement for Justice” but when it was started – March 2007 – most of its supporters including political parties joined this movement only because of their hatred for Musharaf; all who wanted to get rid of Musharaf used Lawyers’ movement as a platform. If it was a movement for Justice and its objective was to restore then sacked Chief Justice Iftikhar, it should have stopped after 20th July 2007 – the first “Historic Decision” – but anti-Musharaf elements kept it alive and used against him until he was made to leave.

Pakistan People’s Party was an integral part of Lawyers’ movement and used it successfully to keep Musharaf under pressure; however, it distanced itself from the movement after it got into power. PPP got what it wanted from being part of lawyers’ movement – they got public support and then got into power.

PML (N) was also actively involved in lawyers’ rallies and demonstrations but it did not approve lawyers’ decision to boycott election 2008 – Politically it was too much to give up for PML (N). They abandoned lawyers, APDM and others to participate in Election 2008 and then managed to form its government in Punjab. From there on, it again got involved in Lawyers’ protests and used it – and used it well – to keep PPP under pressure; it also got political fame by supporting the movement that it can encash in next elections. However, it did not use Lawyers’ movement to confront PPP government until Sharifs were disqualified and Punjab was put under Governor’s Rule.  Did they not want “Justice” before they lost their government and were made ineligible?

With show-of-power on 15th March, Sharifs’ were able to break a deal with Zardari where they will get Punjab government back, their disqualification decision will be reversed and a possible removal of restriction for becoming Prime Minister more than twice. And as a bonus, they also get the credit for Restoration of Judiciary.

Jamat-e-Islami could not get its political objectives (i.e. a mid-term elections) so their first response to PM Gillani’s speech is “It is not the restoration of 2nd November Judiciary”.  This may mean they will start protesting in the name of “Justice” unless they get what they want.

Imran Khan’s first response is “It will not be acceptable if the Judiciary is restored through a deal”. His statement refers to the deal between Sharifs and Zardari.

Lawyers also came out with cautious statement and some indicated to continue the struggle in the name of what they believe is right.

It is hard to understand for me as to how a common person will get justice when we have not changed the system. I do not understand how justice will come to a common person’s life “only” with Chief Justice Iftikhar’s “suo motu” actions. I do not understand how we can fight for restoration of a single “person” when we advocate about “strong” institutions. Last time we restored Chief Justice Iftikhar, the only thing he did was to confront Musharaf and Ch. Shujahat had to say “Hum jahan bhi jatay hain agay se Chief saab aa jatay hain” (wherever we go we are confronted by Chief Justice).

For me, we just have been exploited in the name of Justice; in the very same way when “Pope Urban II” exploited Christians to go in war with Muslims – the first Crusade – but the objective was to save Europeans from Muslims who were knocking at the doors – just next to Byzantine empire, in the very same way when Muslims were exploited in the name of “Jihad” and were made to fight in Afghanistan – the objective was to serve US interests and not to save Islam. For me people could not say “NO” when they were asked “Do you want Justice?” to become a part of Lawyers movement – a movement where each participant had its own objective; it was same as when Zia asked “Do you want Islam?” and no one could say no, same as when Mualana Fazlulla (Pakistani Taliban) asks “Do you want Shria?” and many of us could not argue with him.

In my opinion, the only Justice who got is the Chief Justice Iftikhar – who has got his office back – and set a trend for others to get justice by use of street power. Burning tires, looting public (and private) properties, marches with batons cannot be justified in any way – same as use of Police force on public rallies cannot be justified.  And this is why Sharifs disowned all violent actions of long marchers and their supporters.

I think the decision to restore judiciary is “Historic” ONLY because it has stopped Pakistan going into turmoil, it has cooled down the political temperature, and it has avoided the confrontation between political rivals that this country cannot afford at this time.

Only time will tell if this “Historic” decision will bring justice in people’s life, if “movement for justice” will not be revived with new demands, if chief justice will work on providing justice rather confronting with government and obliging those who helped him get back in his office, if legal complexities created by restoration will be dealt through dialogues and not on the streets, if Chief Justice’s supporters will accept all his decisions whether these will be in favor or against them.

Pakistan: Why PML(N) left coalition?

Thursday, August 28, 2008

When writing my previous post, I feared – like many others – that unnatural alliance of PML-N and PPP will break apart soon. Though it was expected to fall since its birth yet everyone wished for its success, hoped that those who were voted for change will bring something positive in this country, believed that these politicians – not leaders – have learned while in exile. Coalition breaking apart and two major parties going their own ways has started politics like 90s –politics with full of hatred and vengeance.

Apparently, restoration of judiciary was the main issue between two parties – PMLN and PPP to part ways; this is what PMLN is advertising to get more fame and to score against PPP – one must admit PMLN’s tactics to use the power of media. No doubt Nawaz Sharif’s stance on judges’ issue has earned him great fame and popularity but this doesn’t mean that PMLN is a party of principles. It also doesn’t mean that PMLN decided to sit on opposition benches because judges were not restored.

Judges’ issue would have been resolved long time ago if both parties wanted; both PMLN and PPP needed it to be unresolved for other reasons. It never has been an issue of principles for Sharif and Zardari. However, today’s post is not about judiciary or judges issue – I will write about it some other time.

Since February 18th – to be more accurate, since March 22nd – both Nawaz Sharif and Asif Zardari are following two different outlines. Asif Zardari, with a script from America, was busy in strengthening its govt. and getting things in his own hands; reconciliation with MQM, alliance with PMLN, JUI and ANP, Musharraf’s impeachment and not restoring judges was all milestones for his long term plan. He has played his card very cleverly – though at the cost of his and his party’s popularity. On the other hand, Nawaz Sharif, surprised by his party’s surprise victory in February 18th elections, kept his eyes on the next elections. His all moves, including his stance on judges’ issue, alliance with PPP – without sharing responsibility of govt. failures – and his statements against Musharraf and America, were all to be in-cashed in next election.

After getting Musharraf out, electing a non-PPP president and restoring Iftikhar Chuadhary – not judiciary necessarily – Sharif’s next move would have been call for early election but Asif Zardari had different plans. Zardari gathered parties together and mounted pressure on Musharraf – with approval of foreign stakeholders – and got rid of him. Once Musharraf is out, it was logical for Zardari himself to claim presidency; considering his plan to grab power in his hands and powers that still reside with presidency AND considering PPP’s experience with Farooq Laghari in 90s. However, PMLN could not accept Zardari (or PPP nominated) president unless the president’s powers are clipped – especially 58-2(B), the power to dissolve assemblies.

Letting PPP to get a grip at presidency – with so much powers – was in direct conflict with PMLN’s plan – the plan for early elections.


Zardari – (Co-?)Chairman of PPP – becoming president will make sure that PPP govt. will not be dissolved using 58-2(b) – President’s power to dissolve assembly. And with Army recently getting out of politics, America’s support for PPP and Zardari sitting in presidency will make it almost impossible for PMLN to get into election before year 2013 – when current assemblies completes five year term. On the other hand, if – somehow – we go into early elections and PMLN wins, as it is expected with growing popularity, to a majority to forms the govt., it will be under constant threat by president house. Zardari sitting in presidency, with 58-2(B) powers to dissolve the assembly will not let PMLN play easily. This is why least acceptable option for PMLN was to clip 58-2(b) off before PPP installs its own president. So it will be like a catch-22 for PMLN if Zardari is elected as president with all the powers remaining with him as they were with Musharraf.

Understanding this catch-22 for PMLN, it is not hard to believe that judges’ issue is nothing (or least) to do with fall of coalition but it was about a president who can or cannot send current govt. home – when PMLN will be looking for it. If independent judiciary was ever important to PMLN, Supreme Court would not have been attacked under Sharif’s govt. – and by Sharif’s folks. If Chief Justice Iftikhar was any important to PMLN, it would not have nominated a Judge – Justice Siddiqui – who had thrown his own Chief Justice, Sajjad Ali Shah, out of office in 1997 – again under Sharif’s govt. Zardari’s broken promises also have nothing to do with PMLN parting ways from PPP as Sharif himself has a long list of his own broken promises – if one starts counting.

For people like us, it is all about politics of principles and about broken promises – that made coalition fall. And funny as it is that we – well, most of us – believe that.

Having said all this, nothing in this post justifies that Zardari is the right person for president to be elected. It also doesn’t justify any of the wrong doings of PPP – in present or past. This just to unleash PMLN – image that is hidden under untrue campaign of “principles”.