Pakistani politics as an international sport

Once upon a time, when Pakistan had still some self respect, our leaders took dictation from powers like the USA and Great Britain. Sadly, these days, we have been reduced to the level that countries like Lebanon and Saudi Arabia have elbowed out the UK, and are jostling with the US to decide who rules the country.

America, of course, is first when it comes to meddling in Pakistani politics, and there is a long list of other countries not far behind. Saudi Arabia is a close second, and Lebanon (Lebanon!) somewhere in the top five.

In most countries, internal politics are conducted internally. If George Bush and Al Gore differ on who won the election, they go to the American media and the local courts to sort it out, and not to random countries around the globe. Likewise, when the Bangladesh army starts exiling politicians and holding rigged elections, they do it all by themselves.

Here in Pakistan, we have the strange sight of all our politics being conducted outside the country. All the leaders (for life) of the main political parties live outside Pakistan, by choice or by force, and hobnob with any tom, dick and harry (with money) from just about any country which cares.

Pakistan remains the only Islamic country with nukes, and is perpetually on the brink of collapse, so it is understandable that other countries take a keen interest in the local political chessboard, but when countries like Lebanon manage to get themselves in the driving seat of Pakistani politics, there is something really wrong with the system. Heck, what if Somalia and Zimbabwe jump into the action? Or our not so right in the head neighbors, Iran and Afghanistan?

Since Pakistani politics no longer takes place in Pakistan, people finally are starting to turn away from the personality cult which used to surround our leaders. Benazir might be making speeches around the world ad-nasueum, but she and most of Pakistan knows that all these speeches are directed towards her political handlers in various countries.

Irfan Hussain “summed it up best”:

bq. AS POLITICS in Pakistan heats up, I have a confession to make to readers: *I am bored stiff.*

Nawaz Sharif might have been “deported yet again”: but who cares? Even the proverbial man on the street is starting to see through Nawaz’s many lies. Islamic culture being what it is, no one who calls the Saudi govt. a liar is going to be popular here. Nawaz committed the ultimate insult to the Saudi King, calling him and his dead brother a liar, and they are never going to forgive him for that. Considering the Saudi’s are the number two players in Pakistani politics, they are never going to let Nawaz loose again. Good riddance of bad rubbish.

h4. links

* “An overview of the Pakistani political situation”:

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