Thursday, January 13, 2005
We Just Don't Learn
Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf's potentially explosive announcement
last month that he would not step down as military chief and rule his country as
a civilian drew barely a whisper from the U.S. media and Washington officials.
The silence, say foreign policy analysts, reveals as much about U.S.
policy toward Pakistan since the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks as any public
remarks could. While U.S. officials may not wish to criticize Musharraf,
analysts say it might be a mistake in the long term for the United States to
turn a blind eye to Pakistan's military ruler.
Might be a mistake? Perhaps. Our record of propping-up dictators in that region is somewhat less than perfect.
He had pledged to hang up his uniform at the end of 2004 in return for broader
constitutional powers allowing him to dissolve Parliament and the prime
minister's office at his discretion.
Ah - freedom is on the rise.