Thursday, August 09, 2007

Wobbly Knees at 2 am?

Your Blogger is pretty sure that Musharraf was going to declare an emergency at 3 am (or so) this morning. It was signed, sealed and ready to be delivered, but then something made him change his mind at the very last moment.

And what was that something?

Most probably it was that 17 minute conversation Musharraf had with Condi Rice at around 2 am.

Condi Rice is as tough as they come. After all, not that long ago, she reduced our Saville Row-suited gigolo Shaukat “I can conquer any woman in two minutes” Aziz to a babbling wreck. So, other than by shooting at the telephone with his ever ready Glock pistol, our commando general had little option but to yield to the coiffured battle-axe from DC.

So suddenly the storyline has changed.

Just last night it was being touted that emergency was the need of the hour because of:
“1. Threats from United States to attack so called terrorist targets and growing terrorist activities in Pakistan.

2. General law and order situation in NWFP and Balochistan.

3. Killing and kidnapping of Chinese in Pakistan”

And now less than 24 hours later we are being told (as Stratfor reports):

Pakistan: No State Of Emergency

August 09, 2007 11 55 GMT

Pakistani President Gen. Pervez Musharraf has decided not to impose a state of emergency despite being pressured to do so by certain political parties, Information Minister Mohammad Ali Durrani said Aug. 9.

Ho Ho and Hum!


Anonymous said...

We have already been threatened to be bombed back to stone age. I wonder what did the tough lady threatened this time. Most probably that the giantly military machine will not be greased with US Aid anymore.

Another grim reminder that we are not an independent or a sovereign country - IMKHALIL

Onlooker said...

I am glad to note that the FT shares my opinion about Musharraf buckling under US pressure:


By Jo Johnson in Lahore and Farhan Bokhari in Islamabad

Published: August 9 2007 11:23 | Last updated: August 9 2007 16:27

General Pervez Musharraf on Thursday steered away from a state of emergency in Pakistan after an early morning conversation with Washington, but appeared to be flailing in efforts to tackle the crisis engulfing his presidency.

Intense speculation that democratic rights were about to be suspended prompted a 17-minute telephone call to Gen Musharraf from Condoleezza Rice, the US secretary of state, in the early hours of the morning in Islamabad.

By Thursday afternoon senior figures in the ruling Pakistan Muslim League (Q) were playing down the issue. “These are mere rumours. No one is considering [imposing] an emergency,” said Chaudhary Shujaat Hussain, party president.

Claims of an imminent state of emergency to bolster the military’s powers had swept the capital after Gen Musharraf abruptly cancelled an appearance at a US-backed summit of Afghan and Pakistani tribal chiefs that started in Kabul on Thursday.

Although details of the telephone conversation have not been released, officials said Ms Rice would have underlined the negative impact of declaring an emergency and how this would affect Gen Musharraf’s image in the US Congress, where support is waning.

“The Americans are keen to see stability in Pakistan, where they have a huge interest in fighting the war on terror,” said a senior western diplomat. “I wouldn’t be surprised if Rice urged Musharraf to reconsider his position.”

Anonymous said...

how do you know that the whole thing wasn't an engineered pr move to make mush look pro democracy??

Anonymous said...

it was another failed attempt at judiciary, which is standing between the Mush and his "multi pronged" strategy to enforce "enlightened moderation". Another move is likely to come up in a week's time, just before the visit of Boucher, claims my sources. Its literraly Mush vs judiciary at this time and its widely beleived that judiciary is on the table. SM

Anonymous said...

This press gallery published in The Frontier Post on August 10 was right on spot and tells all i think is going on.

Saeed Minhas

Our self-styled foreign minister Khursheed Kasuri wrapped up the discussion on foreign policy in the House by emphasizing that Pakistan has the guts to say no to US be it IPI gas pipe line or a unilateral action in tribal areas, because he claimed that we are sovereign nation and thanks to US aid quite capable of killing our own people if need be.
His speech was sure to defend the policies for which he has been touring the world but somewhere down the line one could feel his high-on-assurances speech was lacking the confidence with which a sovereign foreign minister should speak. But one must appreciate him for not only having the fun-rides across the globe for apparently promoting Pakistan’s ambiguous foreign policy goals but also making his school brand international by having new branches of Beacon Houses in Singapore and Hong Kong.
Since most of the speech aimed at defending the ‘independent’ postures of Pakistan at international level, there was hardly any mention about the working of the foreign missions and their contribution in improving the Pakistanis image abroad or to see what they have done to improve Pakistani exports. We have over US $ 13 billion trade deficit and our exports, for many other reasons as well, are not getting any better because one of the underlying factors is that our foreign missions have failed to promote our products and find new horizons for our traders. Instead, their non-professional and non-cooperative attitudes have led to lose more grounds in the recent years than gain anything.
Given the Pakistan’s situation, it would be harsh to blame the Victorian-styled foreign minister for all this because it’s the character of our sovereignty that we always find blame in others and always rest on imaginative theories. Faiz’s poem seems to highlight this in a different way to some extent, “Somewhere the wave of the slow night will meet the shore and somewhere will anchor the boat of the heart's grief.” (from Freedom's Dawn by Faiz Ahmad Faiz)
Our dependence on three AAAs (America, Allah and Army) is a known secret throughout the world and whatever our foreign minister tried to make us understand is not because we have done something, it is because things happen around us. Unfortunately for us, things always happen around us at a time when either a military dictator is about to claim power or is already in power. Be it the fortunes of Afghan war or of the war on terrorism, we have always benefited for being the front man and serving their cause at the cost of nothing else but our own national unity and cause.
Zia had a jolly ride throughout his days in power on Afghan jihad and in the process pushed the bitter pills of sectarianism, jihadism and factionalism through our throats. Now we are witnessing the present ruling elite, courtesy to war on terrorism, leaving no stone unturned to prove that by killing our own men, we actually are serving our own cause. But the foreign minister failed to mention the ‘cause’ we are serving. The mention of economic and defense causes might smack us back in our face, because on both accounts we are as blind as we were on Afghan war and its causes. We reaped at wholesale the benefits of poverty, drugs and Kalashnikov culture at the end of the Afghan war and what war on terrorism is going to yield us is not a rocket science to apprehend.
Who will stem the tide is a question making rounds in the parliament these days, especially when the ruling elite is giving mixed signals due to their own confused minds. One night the presidency is given the assurance that everything will be alright once the same assemblies will vote for the incumbent president and the other night president finds that despite all assurances, things might turn soar and he might find himself standing once again against the pumped-up judiciary. The ultimate outcome is that confusion is prevailing over confusion. The talk of emergency was just a result of this because it’s not the tamed opposition which runs some kind of shivers down the spine of our rulers; it’s the re-born judiciary which is causing the jitters.
As the emergency proclamation was almost ready, our mole says that it was held back because another viz-kid has hinted at taming the judiciary first. The best possible scenario given to the King is that when there is a term for all the high offices of the country, why not for judiciary.
This means that three year term can be fixed for the chief justice to ensure that the present CJ will be out of office in a short while and government can again find someone with rubber qualities to hold the coveted post of CJ to help deflate the lawyers’ pomp. But the moles confirm that what is certain these days is that President would stay on but just does not know how.
Because after 9th march, he is not ready to act on every summary sent to him but has started thinking twice before leaping. Since dynamics of politics and war zone have little resemblance, that’s where the president might be finding it hard to reach a final assault point. Those who know Gen. Musharraf are of the view that he will fight till the end and is not a person who would just leave and be at the mercy of someone else.

nota said...

Let's remember "Shauki's girl" talked to Mush about two points:

Diplomatic sources told Dawn that Ms Rice made two telephone calls; the first at 5 p.m. Washington time on Wednesday and the second on Thursday morning. Her conversation with President Musharraf focussed on the possible declaration of a state of emergency in Pakistan and the general’s refusal to attend a tribal jirga in Kabul, the sources said.

And what do we see our brave Gen. Wobbly Knees do? He holds off the emergency AND runs to Kabul to to catch the tail end of the jirga -- himself with his tail between his legs...

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