Friday, August 01, 2008

How to Bell the ISI Cat

Regarding how to Bell the ISI Cat, I'm thinking that Nawaz Sharif could be persuaded to save the day -- as a byproduct of his natural inclination for saving himself.

Nawaz has traditionally been associated with Islamic conservatism and the legacy of Zia. On the other hand, Musharraf/Army overthrew him and none of his conservative allies raised a voice in his favour.

Musharraf's role as prime US lackey in War on Terror did allow Nawaz to court back his conservative Islamic support by railing against Mush as a foreign lackey and threat to Pak's vital interests. Nawaz's anti-Mush campaign then extended to spearheading populist demands for restoration of ousted Supreme Court judges -- a partial overlap with liberal interests.

But now former lackey Mush has switched back to armyman role in defending ISI from Uncle. Mush has made the quiet threat to Zardari/Gilani that pushing too hard against ISI will only lead him to dissolve the govt.

If Mush can make this switch from US-lackey to army stalwart, then the anti-Musharraf Nawaz too can make a switch from conservative populist to liberal populist (ie. change from currently supporting ouster of Mush to save Pak from anti-Islamic Uncle, to instead supporting ouster of Musharraf along with leash on ISI in order to save democracy from shadowy military rule)

By making such a switch, Nawaz could consolidate more popular support in his favour. His current populist stance for reinstatement of Supreme Court Justices is a natural springboard for a stance on protecting democracy by leashing ISI. After all, there shouldn't be much love lost between Nawaz and ISI/Army given that the latter overthrew him.

If the US approaches Nawaz to get his support on leashing ISI by linking this to support for restoration of the Supreme Court Justices, then it should be possible to gather enough popular political support to corner the military. This will help Uncle's goals in War on Terror, it will help the Pak public keep their democracy, and it will of course help reduce terrorism in India. The generals lose, but everybody else wins -- and that's the price the generals pay for picking too many fights and alienating everybody else simultaneously (hardly a sound military strategy by them.)

The key then to bringing this about, is then a change in Washington's mindset -- to become willing to sacrifice Musharraf in order to gain a victory in leashing ISI. They must come to realize that Musharraf is not their indispensible man -- especially when he's now switched back to defending ISI from civilian oversight.


Shankar said...

Sooner or later, we will have an opportunity to break up Pakistan a second time. The Sindh-Baloch identity will eventually assert itself.

On the Indian side, I would trust a low-key person like PVN to be heading the govt at that time. Not the rhetorical history debaters.

Arvind said...

Here is another method - carpet bomb Pakistan.

karyakarta92 said...

Exactly my thoughts. Bomb them to pulp and turn the "land of the pure" into a Parking lot. Yes, the same land created by mutilating the motherland & accompanied by the genocide of millions of Hindus. Nothing can possibly be negotiatable with these demoniac scum. Nawaz Sharif may be a lesser monster, but he is a Mullah bigot nevertheless. I've seen videos of him driving a bulldozer to destroy a Hindu temple as CM of Paki Punjab.