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Referendum...Zia to Mussharraf

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    Referendum...Zia to Mussharraf
    The Stigma of Referendum

    You vote for Islam, you vote for Zia!
    It was a referendum for Zia ul Haq Presidency. He captured power and promised a democratic return soon, very soon and this soon could appear only after eleven years, after his accidental death.

    You vote for Pakistan, you vote for Mussharraf!
    He is also promising a democratic return of power.

    Nation is still paying for believing Zia ul Haq.
    Referendum is same, Zia manupulated religion, Mussharraf is manipulating patriotism.
    People memory is no doubt very short.


    No foul language is allowed. Please repost your comments with more appropriate language.

    [This message has been edited by Mursalin (edited April 28, 2002).]


      Anand So far, Musharraf has kept his promise to the nation. I don't think he's gonna deceive nation. Even though, his Referendum policy quiet match with Zia's but NOT PRECISELY. Poor and Middle Class people are in favor of Musharraf

      Long Live Pakistan



        Army Has Lot To gain In Pakistan Referendum

        ISLAMABAD, Pakistan When voters go to the polls Tuesday they will be deciding more than just whether Gen. Pervez Musharraf will be Pakistan's president for the next five years.

        A vote for Musharraf, a strong ally of the United States in its war against terrorism, is also certain to guarantee the military a more permanent role in civic affairs, probably one enshrined in the constitution.

        It's no coincidence that Musharraf is seeking his five-year mandate as president while still in uniform as army chief of staff, the implication being that a vote for him is also a vote for the army.

        His banners drive home that point. "Be Patriotic. Vote Musharraf," reads one, accompanied by a picture of the presidential candidate in full uniform with his many medals.

        Musharraf took power in a bloodless coup in 1999, throwing out democratically elected Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. From the outset Musharraf has been clear that he wants a more constitutionally authorized role for the army a setup not unlike Turkey's.

        Pakistan's army has ruled this poor nation of 140 million people for more than half of the country's 55-year history. Each time Pakistan's democratically elected government falls into chaos, the army either outright takes power or orchestrates a change of government from behind the scenes.

        Usually the military takes over in the name of saving the country from collapse. It was no different this time. Musharraf charged widespread corruption by Sharif, whom he exiled to Saudi Arabia. He also has prohibited another deposed prime minister, Benazir Bhutto, from participating in October's general elections.

        But in this referendum, Musharraf has made it easy for ordinary Pakistanis to vote.

        Any citizen 18 years old or over can vote anywhere in the country. There are no election rolls or voters' lists, raising the possibility that one person might vote more than once, but each voter is to receive a mark with an indelible pen on a thumbnail. The mark is supposed to take two weeks to wear off, government officials say.

        There will be more than 100,000 polling stations at a cost of more than $28 million. That figure doesn't include the cost of the security forces being deployed for the referendum conducted by an administration that is completely in the hands of the army. An army officer even runs state-owned corporations such as those that provide power and light.

        The military government justifies the expense. "The referendum will end uncertainty about the reform process, bring stability and restore investors' confidence," said Nisar Memon, information minister in Musharraf's government. "Compared to the expenses, the positive economic fallout of referendum would be much higher."

        Musharraf, who had been sanctioned by Washington and criticized as a dictator after he seized power in 1999, has earned praise from the U.S. for his cooperation in the campaign against terror in Afghanistan since the Sept. 11 attacks.

        His good standing with the U.S. is a mixed blessing. Hard-line Islamic groups are enraged. But most Pakistanis are ambivalent, viewing a good relationship with the U.S. as a guarantee of economic prosperity but are loath to be seen as dictated to by the only remaining superpower.

        According to Pakistan's constitution, the president is chosen by a vote of the National Assembly or lawmaking lower house of Parliament, the Senate or upper house and the four provincial assemblies. Not this time.

        Yesterday, the Supreme Court struck down a legal challenge to the referendum. On Tuesday, Pakistanis will decide. There are few in Pakistan who expect Musharraf to lose. The only question seems to be the margin of his victory.

        Note For Anand & Others. If Musharraf saying Pakistanis to be Patriotic, why does it bother to you people

        Take Your Best Shot At Me


          Wasn't Zia ul Haq assasinated by helocopter?


            no he and his many fellow genrals were killed in aircraft accident which was result of a sabotage. the top brass of pak army was wasted. people have different stories as to whom was behind it. some say mossad, cia, benazir, iranians, russians. everyone has diff stories.


              With all those suspicions, it's no wonder Pakistani foreign policy is paranoid. Sheeesh!


                The American Ambassador was in that plane as well. It is a fact that not many Americans know. It was a major setback for Pakistani Military since it was a significan fraction of GHQ that was on that plane. It is not being paranoid!! Pakistan has had the misfortune of being a central state in a very bad and central neighborhood. CIA from the start never gave Pakistan a chance to develop. US needed bases next to Russia in 1950's and unfortunately for Pakistan, corrupt generals offered the country and its nascent political institutions on a platter. pakistan has never recovered from that.

                [This message has been edited by OldLahori (edited April 28, 2002).]



                  You know when you have a peeved off Indian over Pakistan's leader, that that leader needs to stay!
                  I believe in dragons, good men, and other fantasy creatures.


                    If the US amdassador went down with the elite of the Pakistan military, that would point to the Soviets. I heard a story from a US media source that claimed it was CIA, but now I see that important news information is withheld from ordinary citizens to keep public opinion controlled. That whole struggle over there was not front page news, anyhow. I meant a justified paranoia. Did the generals of the 50's horde the benefits that came with US air bases? We did provide some defensive capabilities to Pakistan. Our relationship with Pakistan may have been the result of Soviet involvement in Afganistan starting in the 50's.


                      The benefits did percolate down at first, but then the establishment skimmed off everything and more. The history of Pakistan and its many governments is fairly conspitorial in nature. Mainly because Pakistani Governments have never told its own people the truth over anything. One had to be connected to the establishment to know what was really happening. Recently the free press in Pakistan has produced journalists who have reported unvarnished facts, but not consistently. The corrupt establishment of Pakistan, and the gungho short term attitude of CIA with nary a thought to any "blow-back" and you can start putting togather part of the driving forces. Then there was always the ever present India.


                        I venture to say that Pakistan was seen as crucial to the CIA, thus the secrecy may have generated from that concept. I am sure that a good number of the workings of governments do not see the light of day, anywhere. The relationship with the US may have been a positive for Pakistan vis-a-vis India. Heck, I use "vis-a-vis" almost as much as Kissinger and Brzynski did.


                          Pakistan must flourish.

                          Tomorrow people are going to acknowledge a dictator.
                          A dictator, however good and honest he is, ultimately the nation has always to pay a big price for his deeds. This is all history and the people of Pakistan are not in a mood to understand the mistake.


                            Originally posted by anand:
                            A dictator, however good and honest he is, ultimately the nation has always to pay a big price for his deeds.
                            Big price like what? In order to have better economy. Making small damns around 200, which provide water facilites to all of the provinces. Is that what you call a big price?

                            This is all history and the people of Pakistan are not in a mood to understand the mistake.
                            WOW! Im impressed. I've never seen such nice commenst from an Indian for Pakistan and Pakistanis. Wish Vajpayee could have understand when Musharraf was visiting India last year

                            Take Your Best Shot At Me

                            [This message has been edited by Pakistani Tiger (edited April 29, 2002).]


                              In a Greek Tragedy, everyone knows that their actions are leading to a disaster, but everyone feels helpless and more or less forced to act in a manner they know they should not. Pakistan does not have a choice. Like the referendum where there is only one candidate, we only have one choice and that is Mush. & Co. So May Allah guide Mush. for the betterment of Pakistan. The Generalismo not only wants power but he wants to be applauded for wanting it as well. So let him have it.