Islamic Republic of Pakistan: A nation on the cusp of change

The subcontinent of Pakistan seem to have been struck in a Valley walled on one side by steep cliffs of Development, Liberal Democracy and Modern Islamic values and on the other by Under-development and fundamental Islamic ideas. History suggests that the inert motion of this nation is in the direction of anarchy, yet, in the recent past, there had been modest attempts by leaders and political parties to bring-in much needed peace.

If there was a time when Pakistan could choose from being an autocratic, Islamic state, to being a country embracing a more secular, democratic, and a developing nation image, then it is now!! This page intends to keep track and critically view the current developments in the country, all the while hoping to see a major shift in its foreign and internal policies and a more serious approach towards its economy.

Talibanized Pakistan

Posted by prakash on Friday, 13 March, 2009

Many recent headlines have inspired me to start my first blog on this subject:
Mr. Zardari’s open admission that Pakistan is struggling to survive against the Taliban, the bold declaration of ceasefire by Taliban against the Pakistan’s forces and the signing of an agreement for the implementation of Sharia Law against ending violent attacks in the region.

These events not only highlight the power and the reach of the Taliban, but also the sad plight of Pakistan’s unstable government to keep in order what little of it is left in the region. The Taliban has arrived in Pakistan. It is making its presence felt. It regrouped, strengthened and re based itself in the region. The valley being just over 200kms away from Islamabad, make the matters even more harder to comprehend. Should we see it as the success of the Taliban to get a stronghold in the region so close to the capital or as the failure of the government not only on loosing control of the region but also for giving in to the demands of the group.

Implementing the Sharia law is just a pat on the back of the Taliban leadership for its performance. The region has already seen mindless destruction of schools, government buildings, implementing self-styled justice systems with beheadings of government supporters and sympathizers, and imposing a sense of fear among the people. So does this mean, its a clean chit to continue governing the region with its implementation of the Sharia. Then how is it different from what happened in Afghanistan??

Are we seeing just random incidents or is it the start of the birth of a new Afghanistan? What are the implications of these events on the World and importantly on India? Hard to understand …

Pakistan is already widely known as a base for exporting Terrorism, with the latest example being 26/11, Mumbai. However, the assassination of Benazir Bhutto and the siege of the Lal Masjid by Islamic militants, added to these events show that the ideology of Islamic fundamentalism is spreading and finding roots and that no region, be it the tribal areas nor the capital, is immune to it.

Formerly isolated air strikes in the tribal regions bordering Afghanistan by the coalition forces, have now become regular fortnight news, indicating that the focus of war is shifting from Afghanistan to Pakistan. The so called “Operation Enduring Freedom” is spreading. Isn’t this scary ??

- Prakash