Centrifugal Firecrackers

We happen to agree with Pat Lang that Pakistan always was a bad idea. It is, however, what it is. From the Hindu, India’s online newspaper come reports of another lawyer uprising akin to last Spring’s:

Pakistan’s deposed Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry urged lawyers on Tuesday to defy the police and protest against President Pervez Musharraf’s imposition of the Emergency rule.

“Go to every corner of Pakistan and give the message that this is the time to sacrifice,” Mr. Chaudhry, who is under virtual house arrest here, told them by mobile phone. “Don’t be afraid. God will help us and the day will come when you’ll see the Constitution supreme and no dictatorship for a long time.”

“The Constitution has been ripped to shreds. The lawyers should convey my message to the people to rise up and restore the Constitution,” he said. The mobile phones were then cut.

“Condi Rice on Line 3?  Tell her I am  . . . at the mosque, praying”.

Sure, estimates that the Paks have anywhere from 20-100 nuclear weapons makes things a bit dicey. Far more than the AgitProp driven bogey man of Iran. Juan Cole, however, argues that the Warlord didn’t really care about ‘democracy’ in the first place and is happy to support either Musharraf as dicator or his replacement. Cole doesn’t even seem to be all that concerned about rogue elements of the military in conjunction with the Taliban/al-Qaeda sympathetic ISI proliferating. Nothing will change in the end:

But Pakistan’s military is the linchpin of Bush’s policies in Afghanistan and in the no-man’s land of tribal Pakistan. Faced with choosing between an ignominious rout in the region from which the Sept. 11 plot was launched, and perhaps even the fall of the Kabul government to a resurgent Taliban, or otherwise having to suffer criticism for hypocritically backing a military dictatorship, Bush will mouth some polite phrases about the prospect of elections in the future (as he did in 1999), and go on providing for Islamabad’s military machine. Aside from the cancellation of some ineffectual debates in a weak Pakistani Parliament — and the end of the illusion that any vestiges of democracy remain — nothing will change.

Perhaps Cole is right. We still think it is a bit premature to be sanguine that Pakistan and its government will both remain unitary. The Army, in particular, below the high command level, is in disarray and woefully demoralized by their repeated failures to venture into the NWFP. It is not inconceivable for an ambitious colonel or brigadier general building support to oust both Musaraff and Bhutto. Under any circumstances, securing nuclear weapons and designs is of paramount importance. In that regard, one must also ask how India will react to its rival’s potential strategic disintegration.

The Warlord has stepped into a steaming, nasty pile of Mush. And he will turn to the American people and Congress to scrape his shoe.


  1. Dr.LeoStrauss says

    Lest anyone thing the Saudis don’t care — don’t forget the date! :

    Saudi Arabian Embassy Hosts Exhibition of Orientalist Paintings

    The Saudi Arabian Embassy and Sotheby’s are co-hosting a month-long exhibit of 19th Century Orientalist Paintings collected by San Francisco-area businessman Terence Garnett. The gorgeous collection includes such works as Ludwig Deutsch’s “The Nubian Palace Guard” and “The Answer,” and Jean Leon Gerome’s “The First Kiss of the Sun” and “Prayer in the Desert.”

    The Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia is located at 601 New Hampshire Avenue, NW, Washington DC 20037 (next to the Kennedy Center). The public is invited to view the exhibit on weekdays, Nov. 9 to 30, from 11 to 2 pm.

    “I came to this collection over the last several years as I have always been drawn to the romance and historic glory of this geography as it was evolving during the 19th century,” Mr. Garnett, told guests at the exhibit’s opening reception On Nov. 8, 2007.

    “Even more so now, part of my interest in this genre and in our exhibit in particular comes from the opportunity to raise public awareness and interest in the impressive cultural offerings born from the Middle East.”

  2. Comment says

    Jon Stewart probably has little interest in wallowing in Tweetville – but he could make great use of the “Chinese thing” quote. What a freakshow Hardball has become – Comment knows life is not fair, but its just ridiculous that this guy has so much influence though most people would lose their jobs saying half of what he says, if they talked that way in the office.

  3. A Random Quote says

    “What’s with her [Hillary] clapping? Why is she always clapping? There we see her—I don’t know any—is this a Chinese thing? What is this clapping? She doesn’t clap like you do at a movie you like or something. She claps when she meets people. She claps—is that Tom Friedman? I mean, she claps when she stands at a luncheon. What is all the clapping about?”

  4. A Random Quote says

    MASON: I still don’t know where she stands on that issue [drivers license]. Do you? I have no idea.

    MATTHEWS: I don’t know. I know that she sympathizes with [reacting to videotape]— Well, there she is clapping again! I don`t whether she is clapping— Would somebody please tell me why she claps every time she goes somewhere?

    CAPEHART: Maybe she’s responding to the crowd.

    MATTHEWS: She’s clapping for them!

    MASON: We should clap more.

    MATTHEWS: No, I think it`s bizarre behavior. Anyway, I think it has something to do *with—men* don’t know what to do with their hands. I guess she’s like us. Anyway, we’ll be right back with more of the roundtable. I want an answer—why is she clapping? Matt, please! Tell me! Why does she clap all the time?

    CONTINETTI: She’s happy, Chris.

    MATTHEWS: Well, that’s a good answer. We`ll be right back.


  5. A Random Quote says

    “This gender thing is so tricky. Here’s my theory. Men voted in the first part of the last century to give women the vote. They had all the votes and decided to share them. They thought, ‘they’re smart, we’re married to them, if momma’s not happy nobody’s happy’ sort of thing.”

  6. Comment says

    Both of our political parties have to cut the sanctimonious talk about democracy. At such moments as this everyone know what we’ll do and why we’ll do it – Oh btw you don’t have to read Michael Rubin to know that Condi isn’t gonna pressure Egpyt on voting rights. Besides both Mubarek (Tweety’s favorite torture leader) and Mush can both point to black being denied the vote on flimsy pretext in Florida and Ohio – They can also point to the fact that we torture and lie about it – Everyone can point to lots of things. How many dead Iraqis 600K? 1.2 Million? Yeah – Mush can do whatever he can get away with.

  7. Comment says

    Why doesn’t Joe Biden propose splitting the country up into different radical stans – allowing Benizar to rally people to nationalism in a scornful response? Then she can arrange a joint communique with Mush denouncing Biden and the Senate as Indian stooges, thus providing a basis for reconciliation and face saving.

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