Saturday, March 21, 2009

Another perspective on "the victory".

There is no doubt that the popular will in Pakistan needs an outlet, and my view has always been that although Nawaz Sharif and Shehbaz Sharif recognize this and have shown willingness to USE it for achieving their own objectives, I saw it as very unlikely that Nawaz Sharif (or even Aitezaz) would become party to the destruction of an order in which they themselves are "somebodies"

Some people in the PTI/JI camp are raising some questions on the mysterious moves of NS, SS and AA when the rest of the leadership of Movement for Rule of Law was incomunicado. (Imran was doggedly pursued, while AA was let out while the police looked away. note that there was NO MOB outside his house asking for him to be freed... he basically walked out of his house .. same thing happened to SS the night before and exactly the same thing was repeated with NS the next day around 1pm)

I'm not saying there was some back-door "deal", as TeethMaestro had pointed to while the long march was in progress (and which I didn't really buy into at first, at all to be honest!)... but at the very least these occurances are really myesterious and need some looking into.

Here is another perspective from World Socialst Website (WSWS) writer Keith Jones:
All of these measures were patterned after those that the dictator Musharraf had employed in 2007 in the face of mounting popular opposition.

But unlike then, sections of the military-security establishment in the Punjab balked.

Sharif quickly escaped from detention, with police reportedly joining in dismantling the barricades that they had erected round his house. Also escaping from house arrest was Aitzaz Ahsan, the lawyer and one-time PPP leader who has spearheaded the campaign to restore the purged judges to the bench.

He also seems to confirm my views that due to his right of center leanings, and the changed US strategy in Afghanistan despite the so called "surge", Nawaz Sharif has actually become more palatable for the US and he is only slightly less controllable than Zardari and it will all be done through the Saudi's to whom he (NS) owes big time! ...
The Obama administration also feared that a showdown between the country's principal bourgeois parties, involving mass demonstrations and confrontations with the police, could provide an entry point for Pakistan's oppressed masses to voice their anger at a devastating economic crisis and wrenching IMF restructuring program.

With its intervention in Pakistan's most recent political crisis, the Obama administration appears to have made a definite shift in US policy toward Sharif and his Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) or PML (N).

So? was this really the victory that Sharif(s) are proclaiming it is? the author doesn't seem to think so:
Sharif and much of the Pakistani media are proclaiming the restoration of the judges an historic triumph for democracy. It is nothing of the sort.

Once again Washington and the military have manipulated Pakistan's political structure for their reactionary ends.

The judges, Chaudhry included, have a long record of providing a legal fig-leaf for the authoritarian and arbitrary actions of the military and, even more importantly, have served as the legal enforcers of Pakistan's grossly unequal capitalist social order.

That is why all manner of right-wing forces, including the Ex-Servicemen's Association of former ISI-head Hamid Gul and other reactionary generals, and the Jamaat-e-Islami, the country's largest Islamic fundamentalist party, were willing to campaign for their return to the bench.

If Sharif has focused his opposition to the PPP government on the judges issue, it is precisely because he has no fundamental disagreement with the PPP-led government's support for the Afghan war or its neo-liberal economic policies.

Seems to me that they (ie; Messers Sharif Brathran) just wanted this "itmaam-e-hujjat" so that they could get this "judiciary restoration monkey" off their back. Because now they seem ready to get on-board with the PPP government and the whole judiciary thing is out of the way too... still remains to be seen whether Zardari will actually want them back in after them having stolen all the credit for "restoration of judiciary".... (wtf?)

And finally, some thoughts on the class aspects of the "leadership" of the march and those "who were led". The ruling elite of Pakistan, averted a disaster for itself when Nawaz and Aitezaz, members of the ruling elite and therefore having the same class interests, made the decision to call off the long march after the token restoration of the chief justice... who gives a shit about real reform that the nation really wants. eh? This is exactly why neither Nawaz nor Aitezaz bothered to have the PM give guarantees in the speech about taking concrete steps in the parliament viz-a-viz the independence of judiciary. Something that I had talked about a while back.


karachi khatmal said...

before i begin, i must admit that my views may be intensely biased due to my experiences with lefties during my time at LUMS

however, the analysis you have quoted makes sense largely within the lens of leftist criqtiue. for all my intellectual leanings towards it, i feel that it is largely irrelevant. my main contention is with the insight that the obama administration stepped in to protect what otherwise would have been the entry point for the masses to vent their fury.

i'm sorry, but the masses have vented their fury with reckless abandon whenever they have felt the need. lefties keep promising the coming revolution, and refuse to acknowledge any change they see because it doesn't conform to their absolutist standards.

i'm sorry if i am personally offending you, my views have been largely biased by my personal experiences.

yes, the revolution of the restoration was tainted, and not how we wanted, and seems to have been hijacked. but that's how things change - we can't wake up and have all our structural problems suddenly vanish can we? such a critique is unecessarily cynical, which seems to be the hallmark of leftist critique - to dismiss everything as frivilous, to continuously wait for the virgin godot who will embodify all their unrealisable desires.

sorry for the rant.

Taban Khamosh said...

Hey thanks for your comment and I'm not offended at all because actually I agree with your rant, and I think you nailed the whole 'leftist critique' thingy right on the head. :)

Actually I think we should take our money and run as far as the CJ restoration issue is concerned. I just think that our 'leaders' are slaves to their class interests (whatever that is -- because I only have vague ideas about it and I'm most likey wrong) and therefore, I'm happy with the outcome because I wasn't really expecting much more than this.

The WSWS writers seem to have this need to plaster a paragraph or two about the proletariat and all that jazz because otherwise their essays prolly get rejected lol :)

I think the order was in real danger of collapsing and because there isn't viable leadership, it could have led to anarchy and that is something that our sockpuppet 'ruling' class just can't afford to precipitate (NS and AA included).

I do have the feeling that the change is real, in terms of the awareness of the masses, but I don't think the 'moses' for our 'bani israel' has been born yet ... so we wait... tick tock tick tock ...

P.S. It is not just the leftist critique anymore, PTI and JI seem to be subscribing to the same puritanical view/expectation of things. They are not happy with the "daagh daagh ujaala" either...

Personally, I'm happy with the outcome, and NS/AA behaved as expected... I just wish we had wrung a little more out of 'the kleptablishment' than was done ... but then again, I'm just on the sidelines ... so I guess I'll take what I can get, and live to fight another day etc etc. :)