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Will Musharraf give up power in Oct 2002?

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    Will Musharraf give up power in Oct 2002?

    The Supreme Court of Pakistan gave Musharraf until October 2002 to hold elections and return the government to the elected representatives of the people. If there is any respect for the law, this dictat should be adhered to, and a further appeal to the Supreme Court should not be sought to circumvent this perceived "catastrophe".

    The rulers of a country should be the ones whom the majority of the people of the country agree to. Personal likes and dislikes of a bunch of newspaper columnists and few expats sitting in far-off places is not the deciding factor. It is the people of the country who have to bear the consequences of govt policies, right or wrong. And it is the people, literate or illeterate, intelligent or idiots, who deserve to make that choice.

    Despite the over-whelming enthusiasm displayed on this board for Musharraf, his litmus test will be a fair general elections before the deadline and lawful transfer of power. If we go by the opinion of people, who actually vote in the country, and those who are elected by them in local elections, Musharraf stands virtually no chance of being elected sans rigging or changing the rules of the game.

    Those who are the proverbial silent majority in the country, whose support every Tom, Dick and Harry claims to have, if you don't vote, then lose your right to complain later on.

    Musharraf has already extended his term as COAS unilaterlly. If that is any indication, he won't be leaving the power that easily.

    Does it seem that Musharraf will hold general elections? If he still fails to get the results he want, will he ever leave power? I, for one, am doubtful on both counts.

    [This message has been edited by MJ (edited January 02, 2002).]

    #2
    And for the record, I think Musharraf is a stellar fellow, and Army is a wonderful organization. But as they say "to each his own".. army's duty is to defend the geographic frontiers of the country. Not to rule the country.

    While experiments in democracy so far are not a success, there reason for failure is just that. They were deemed "experiments". The patience of our armed forces runs out very quickly. With "might is right" mentality, they throw a democratic government and install themselves. We hardly ever have more than a decade of continuous democratic process.

    Democracy needs time to mature. It needs nurturing by the people. We need to have trust in the system. The process has a way of eliminating the garbage. Its not quick and its not perfect. But if we derail the process every few years, we start back afresh. The matured democracies in the world took 50-100 years before they became the models we see now. Pakistan, herself is barely 50 years old. Why are we so impatient?

    What we need is to sustain the process and earn the goodwill of the people. Not just a maverick of foreign policy who is admired the world over, but the people in his own back-yard despise him. Its the people of Pakistan who matter. Don't trash their opinion by calling them dumb and idiots and unable to make the right decisions. Whatever their faults, they need to continue the process and learn from their mistakes.

    Comment


      #3
      He doesn't need to be elected. As he's going to be President for the next couple of years anyway, he can just use his position as COAS to constantly breathe down any new PM's neck and continue to influence things.... thank God for that!!!
      Muslims are so good at dividing that they can divide the atom. If you see two Muslims, probably they belong to 3 parties.
      Al-Ghazali

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        #4
        MJ,

        first I think we need to dismiss your point about ignoring the opinions of ex-pats - because if that's the case we need to ignore your whole thread!

        Secondly, democracy is great if it can be implemented at all costs, otherwise it loses it's meaning. As we have seen, democracy was suspended in Algeria when the Islamists were in danger of winning power.

        Democracy has seen a rabid Hindu fundamentalist party take power in India. Right now, if jammatis were to take power through democracy in Pakistan instead of the liberal Musharraf, would you support it?

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          #5
          Actually thats the beauty of it. Despite their noise value and nuisance factor, Jamaat has never been a serious political contestant and never got enough votes in Pakistan to lay claim to power. This shows that just having noisy protesters does not mean someone should give you power. You need to show it at the polling booth.

          And yes, if a majority of voting public supports People's Party, for example, I will acccept it as a decision of the people. My own dislike for Benazir doesn't need to subside nor should it compel me or someone to dislodge her undemocratically just because we don't like her. Same is true for Jamaat-e-Islami or Tehreek-e-Nifaaz-e-Shariat-e-Muhammadi or Hizb-u-Tehrir. If enough voting public don't support them, they can take their whining and street-power and go take a hike.

          Now, Army being a professional organization, imagine if tomorrow a Jamaati becomes a Lt. General and then over-throws a democratic government and implements jamaaati version of islam, who is there to check him? Or a Hizb-e-Tehrir sympathiser? We are already setting the precedence that army is right and politicians are bad. Will u support an army general in that case?

          And frankly I find nothing to be thankful by the prospect of an unpopular (see above) army general breathing down the neck of a democratically elected person for the forseeable future. This is a sure recipe of pulling the strings from the back-ground and then lay blame for all the ills on the darn politicians if things go wrong.

          Comment


            #6
            MJ,

            you didn't answer the question.

            If enough people vote for Jamaat, will you support that? Remember you are the one that has promoted the 'Democracy at all cost' view.

            Simple question:

            Would you support an Islamic fundamentalist party if it came to power through democracy (which you advocate)?

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by MJ:
              The Supreme Court of Pakistan gave Musharraf until October 2002 to hold elections and return the government to the elected representatives of the people. If there is any respect for the law, this dictat should be adhered to, and a further appeal to the Supreme Court should not be sought to circumvent this perceived "catastrophe".
              MJ, from your eloquence, one can gather that you are a reasonably educated fellow. However, what I fail to understand is that why you are unable to recognise that the current military rule has been better than any sham democracies Pakistan has had. Why are people afraid of the success Pakistan is capable of achieving under Musharaf.
              The sham democracies in Pakistan have failed to deliver. Give this man a chance to lay the foundation for a true democracy, before it is handed over to true patriots not people trying to make fast buck.

              Comment


                #8
                "A nation gets the leader it deserves"
                "Do not oppress & do not be oppressed"

                Hadith (Sayings of) Prophet Muhammad (SAW)

                Comment


                  #9
                  Judge,

                  I don't have to support them. But if enough people support them, and vote for them, then I will support their right to rule the country. I do not support any movement to overthrow a democratic government through unconstitutional methods just because I don't like them. Be it Jamaat, be it Hizb or be it People's party. If I believe people made a mistake, then I should work to educate the people, so they don't make the mistake again. If majority of the people don't believe me, then its their choice.

                  2bornot2b: My only argument with you is that I still believe that, in the long run, the people are the best judge of whats good for them. You and I have a right to our opinion and we should most certainly share it, but 'adult franchize' means every person has one vote. The two of us can cast our vote to Gen Musharraf but if a majority still casts theirs for Benazir, guess what! Now you may call it sham democracy or whatever, but its those 140 million people who have to live there, and if a majority of them want to live in a certain way, then its their choice. We have seen from the polls (they may be inaccurate, I give you that) that despite his popularity in foreign press, Musharraf has not clicked with the masses of Pakistan. The so-called intellectuals like him, but its the farmer and the laborer and the cab-driver who will actually turn out to vote, and not MJ, sitting in USofA or 2bornot2b sitting whereever. We may think he is the best thing that happened to Pakistan in 54 years, but he better convince the 140 million people of Pakistan about that and not just us. So far, it doesn't seem to be working.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    I think democracy is a good thing, and I'm sure most people here will agree with me. My problem is with the implementation of democratic values in Pakistan. It cannot be done. When the vast majority of the population, illiterate..one cannot expect the informed choice to be made.

                    We must look at the reality: President Mush. has placed Pakistan's interests to be supreme and is the best man for the job at the present and near future. Only a religious extremist, hard core supporter of previous regimes, and anti Pakistani elements will deny the President's fine performnce.

                    I think that when democracy does come into
                    place, there should be a board or a group of military overseers with proper checks and balances to make sure the politicians are not involved in corrupt practices. The most important construct of this Military group would be to avert the extreme result -- a Coup toppling democracy altogether. Our priorities should be for Pakistan first and foremost.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      [QUOTE]Originally posted by MJ:
                      [b]Judge,

                      I don't have to support them. But if enough people support them, and vote for them, then I will support their right to rule the country. I do not support any movement to overthrow a democratic government through unconstitutional methods just because I don't like them. Be it Jamaat, be it Hizb or be it People's party. If I believe people made a mistake, then I should work to educate the people, so they don't make the mistake again. If majority of the people don't believe me, then its their choice.

                      2bornot2b

                      Baravo MJ....atleast someone can talk sense, i hope u will be able to convince these intellectual fascists..!!!

                      and to your question "will musharraf give up"....wat u think honestly...will he...NOPE....historical evidence..

                      1. Would Jinnah had ever given up if he would'nt have died, or would he had even gone for free elections....NOPE

                      2. Did Zia quit after 90 days??? Did he handed over the powers to civilians (de-facto position)

                      and then....he (musharraf has enough ppl. around him to make him believe that "aali jaah aap ka wujood mulk-o-quam ke liyay intehaee zaroori hia" "your being in power is a MUST for this country to prosper"

                      so i dont think he will give up..!!!

                      ------------------
                      Ye aijaz tha husn-e-awargi ka;
                      jahan bhi gaay daatan chord aaiy

                      Comment


                        #12
                        MJ, there is nothing wrong in principle with what you are saying. However, what you have to ask yourself is: Have all the Pakistani people ever had the real freedom of choosing their leader?

                        Bonded labour for many means they vote for whom their masters want them to vote.
                        Lack of proper education is another factor. Look at the many people who were on the streets of Pakistan thinking that Taliban (and for that matter Pakistan) could take on the might of the coalition.

                        I genuinely believe many on this board who support the Army do want a democratic Pakistan, but they want reforms first so that we do not have a sham democracy for the sake of democracy.

                        We need to have a better education system and democracy at the grass root level where people in their villages and mud huts can decide FREELY what is good for them. The elected sham democracies have never provided this. Only the rich have got richer.

                        I for one would be reluctant at this stage to hand back power to PPP or ML (whatever version). They have been tried and failed. I for one would want to give Musharaf a chance. He has shown he is not like any other military leader and his heart is in the right place.

                        Its easy for people living in the rich West to decide what is good for Pakistan and impose their morals. If people are genuine about the future of Pakistan, they must start looking from the eyes of the poor and the hungry in that country. Say no to sham democracy - until we are ready for a sincere elected government.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          MJ,

                          your viewpoint might be right from an idealistic point of view, but there are inherent dangers in it as well. For example, Adolf Hitler was an elected leader and his Nazi regime was not defeated in the end by the vote of the people, but by the allied blitzkrieg bombing campaign and the nuking of the Japs. This shows that elections are not the be all and end all in deciding a nation's future.

                          Similarly, FIS, the islamist party was poised to take power in Algeria when the army stepped in with the approval of all western democratic governments, and aid especially from the French, land of Voltaire and the now discredited quote: "i may not agree with what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it".

                          This also brings into question, what happens if an Islamist party is elected and then do away with the constitution, banning all parties unless they conform to islamic convention?

                          Even if you answer that it's up to the people what they want, we have to take into consideration other factors such as will it be accepted by the rest of the world?

                          Therefore we can see that elections and democracy are complicated issues and cannot be looked at idealistically with the viewpoint of the man in the pub.

                          Essentially, Musharraf is right, that political parties need to be developed from the grass-roots level. At the moment we have basically two mafia type parties which have shamefully been out-performed by a bunch of soldiers.

                          The fact that Musharraf has proved to be our best statesmen for decades speaks volumes about those who went before.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            given the current situation genral sahab must hang on for some more time

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Those who are trying to compare zia to Gen Musharaff are obviously on something. Zia was a self centered back stabbing person out to make money and destroy anyone who came in his way.

                              President Musharaff is totally different. He has proved himself to be the best leader Pakistan has had since I can remember. Not even ZA Bhutto could have done what President Musharaff has done thus far.

                              I do think he will hold elections in October - and I also believe he will stay as President for another 2-3 years at least. I think that would be a good move. He will give up the COAS post as soon as elections are held because that would mean the constitution would once again come into effect and he will not be able to maintain both posts at the same time.

                              He'll be a good President - to keep the politicians in check. I also think Article 58-2(b) of the 8th amendment in the constitution will once again be brought back into effect and that will give him enough power to keep the politicians honest.

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