| Welcome to Global Village Space

Thursday, February 15, 2024

The political hypocrisy in Pakistan

Pakistan's political leadership, starting from Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto to Benazir Bhutto, the Sharifs, and Imran Khan, owe its existence to the army. Let us stop this charade and blame game now, particularly when the ministers in the present set-up have repeatedly said that they need the army's shoulders to continue in office till August 2023.

According to the New Testament, one day when Jesus was sitting in the Temple in Jerusalem, people came to him, and he sat down and taught them. The scribes and the Pharisees (The Jewish legal experts who were opposed to Jesus) brought a woman who had been caught in adultery, and placing her in the midst they said to him, “Teacher, this woman has been caught in the act of adultery.

Now in the Law, Moses commanded us to stone such women. So what do you say?”They said this to test him, to have a basis for accusing Him. But Jesus bent down and began to write on the ground with his finger. When they continued to question him. He straightened up and said to them, “Let him who is without sin among you be the first to cast a stone at her.

Read more: A smart agitation in Pakistan

People in those days, unlike the present-day Pakistanis, were not hypocrites

So, as the biblical story goes, “but when they heard it, they went away one by one, beginning with the older ones, and Jesus was left alone with the woman standing before him”.Then Jesus told the woman, “Neither do I condemn you. Go and sin no more”.

The purpose to mention this old tale is to highlight the political hypocrisy that the people of Pakistan are witnessing during these tumultuous times. In the post-regime-change political set up the charge sheet against Imran Khan’s previous government includes: 1) Imran Khan came into power riding on the establishment’s shoulders; 2) He is an arrogant person who had spurned Shehbaz Sharif’s offer for agreeing on a charter of the economy;3)He compromised on Jammu &Kashmir;4) his foreign policy was a failure.

The establishment’s meddling in politics is a fact

Pakistan’s political leadership, starting from Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto to Benazir Bhutto, the Sharifs, and Imran Khan, owe its existence to the army. Let us stop this charade and blame game now, particularly when the ministers in the present set-up have repeatedly said that they need the army’s shoulders to continue in office till August 2023. The current gossip about offering the present army chief a one-year extension, or making him the CDS, should be viewed in this context.

Talking about Imran Khan’s arrogance and his rejection of Shehbaz Sharif’s proposal to negotiate on a charter of economy, one is reminded of Imran Khan’s inaugural speech in the national assembly after he was sworn in power. The cat calls and hooliganism during the session by the then opposition forced Imran Khan to retaliate by saying he would not leave Zardari and the Sharifs, accused of massive corruption, including money laundering.

Read more: Talks between the Government of Pakistan and the TTP

As for the so-called charter of economy, it was no more than hoodwinking the people by diverting attention from the Sharif and Bhutto-Zardari corruption. Shehbaz Sharif and Bilawal Zardari, during every session of the national assembly, indulged in massive slandering against the government and left the assembly in a huff when Imran Khan or any one of the federal ministers stood up to reply to their insinuations. Just before tabling the no-confidence motion, Bilawal and Maryam led long marches toward Islamabad to protest against inflation.

And these are the same people who now label Imran Khan as an agitator

I had written earlier that the present government was installed to fulfill the US and India global agenda in South Asia by 1) Keeping Afghanistan destabilized to fulfill the US ambitions in the Eurasian landmass; 2) Promoting India as the dominant power in the region;3) Check mating China.

In the absence of clearly defining the government policy, and due to the hush-hush manner in which the current government is running Pakistan’s foreign policy, rumors have become more powerful than facts. According to the Islamabad grapevine, the recent talks between the TTP and the Government of Pakistan were held to discuss the TTP’s demand to reverse the integration of the former FATA into KPK. This is a US demand to facilitate the establishment of a buffer state between Pakistan and Afghanistan, comprising FATA and a sliver of Afghan territory to the west of the Durand Line. In this proposition, Maulana Fazal ur Rehman is on board with the Americans. Adversity makes strange bedfellows, goes the proverb, with a slight variation- in Pakistan’s case – it is the quest for power by the Maulana that has brought him and the US together.

Read more: The vulgar living style of Pakistan’s nouveau riche

There was a lot of hullabaloo by Imran Khan’s opposition when India abrogated Article 370 and Article 35 A which granted a semblance of autonomy to the Indian Held Kashmir. As things started unfurling, Saudi Arabia and the UAE reportedly offered to bring in a USD 100 billion foreign investment in the region if India and Pakistan resolve the Jammu & Kashmir dispute by agreeing to convert the LoC in Jammu & Kashmir to the International boundary between the two countries. Imran Khan’s government didn’t buy this proposal. However, the present government has talked about resuming trade relations with India even before there is any progress on J&K.

As the first step, it has agreed to appoint a trade commissioner in India

The G20 or Group of Twenty is an intergovernmental forum comprising nineteen countries and the European Union. It works to address major issues related to the global economy, such as international financial stability, climate change mitigation, and sustainable development. According to the Indian media reports, IHK will be hosting its first-ever G-20 meeting next year. The G-20 members include, besides others, China, Turkey, and Saudi Arabia – three countries considered Pakistan’s strategic partners. Such an announcement could never have been made without the concurrence of these countries. Pakistan’s Foreign Office has limited itself to rejecting the proposed meeting.

Read more: Pakistan’s Power Dynamics

The recent virtual meeting of BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa) was held last week in China. During the meeting, India blocked a Chinese proposal to invite Pakistan to attend the ‘High-level Dialogue on Global Development’. Pakistan’s Foreign Office again limited itself to condemning India, without naming it. China and Pakistan are strategic partners. The dialogue, from which India blocked Pakistan, was also held virtually on the sidelines of the BRICS meeting. Is China having second thoughts about its relationship with Pakistan?


Saleem Akhtar Malik is a Pakistan Army veteran who writes on national and international affairs, defense, military history, and military technology. He Tweets at @saleemakhtar53. The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Global Village Space.