Friday, November 16, 2007

Pakistan----Unstable Neighbourhood

The recent turmoil in our neighbourhood has left evrybody in an uneasy situation. Pervez Musharraf's recent actions seem to suggest a nation to be on brink of collapse, even though reconciliatory voices are being made by the President.
To end the crisis of leading the country on two fronts i.e. militarily & politically, the ongoing president sought a middle way out by having a US brokered deal with former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto. Even after packing of Nawaz Sharif to Saudi, everybody was convinced that Musharraf wanted to step down as military ruler and take over the reins as the civilian President of the country.
Benazir Bhutto, former Prime Minister of Pakistan entered into deal with musharraf wherein she would be allowed to come back to Pakistan and take part in elections and Musharraf would step down as Military leader and assume the post of civilian President.
But even before drying the ink of the deal, the volte-de-face by Bhutto as to raving about actions of musharraf immediately on landing in pakistan sent a wrong note of her intentions. Bhutto instead of trying to have fair elections started ranting about musharraf and his cronies. This has lead to a peculiar situation, where though a military leader was ready to accede power to politician, the ramblings have lead a question mark on Bhutto's intentions.
Evrybody is trying to call Musharraf's actions as unwarranted, but has anybody thought what would happen, if a person like Benazir Bhutto comes to power? the lady who has been already facing charges for her role in rampant corruption in the state. the lady who immediately changed her tune once reaching pakistan. the lady who does not recognise the immediate situationin hand and instead goes on offensive against the person who brought her in pakistan back.
Musharraf is in a unique situation, where all his efforts to change pakistan have failed. Extremists have increased the hold over the state. Military itself has been echoing misgivings about their general. whatever little crackdown of militants has turned ISI against the government.
If there is no stable ruler (whether military or political) in pakistan, it will have grave consequences on India too. India at this juncture is having a party with its economy zooming, rising stock markets, burgeoning forex reserves, strong currency and buoyant growth in economic health. India cannot afford to have a failed state in the neighbourhood. It will bring the chaos of Afghanistan to our doorstep. It will unreasonably increasse our defence expenditure and bring an abrupt end to the party.
India needs to make sure (by hook or crook) that Pakistan does not end in civil war and become a headless chicken with no effective control over its defence & nuclear material. Our intelligence system needs to be bolstered at this moment to understand the exact temperature within the neighbouring state.
But alas our politicians are interested in their own (read political party) affairs than about our nations....

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