↑ Grab this Headline Animator

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Inept, so inept, are we - Ardeshir Cowasjee & Irfan Hussain

This is one of the most pessimistic column from the Parsi Bawa ever. Coming from one who never lost hope, had always a twinkle in his eyes, these ominous words are full of foreboding - t

He aligned himself with some of the most distasteful political characters that this country has ever produced — and that is putting it mildly. He relied on them to keep him in power and it all fell apart, due to his own foolishness and his reliance upon the worst advice he could be given. By now, almost isolated, he has hopefully acknowledged their worth and his own errors. His job should have been to seek out, rear and nurture young, fresh, unpolluted, able and honest men and women and establish them in politics as his successors. That is what, as a good dictator with unlimited powers, he should have done. It is all too late. The present is doomed. We need governance to survive, and without governance we will remain lawless and directionless.Come the inevitable elections and he offered the country all he had to offer, all that was available to him — relics of his own reign which were roundly rejected by the electorate, and relics of the totally unproductive and destructive 1990s. What the country got, via the ballot box, was stale bread.

And as if the old curmudgeon's post was not enough, Irfan Hussain added to the pessimism:

A world without joy

A recent article in The New York Times shows how the authority of the Pakistani state has ebbed in recent years. Near Ziarat in Balochistan, a marble mine had been inactive for years due to a tribal feud. Despite the government’s best efforts, no stone was being quarried. However, the Taliban stepped in, enforced a truce, and got the operation going again. They received $45,000 for their trouble, and now get a fee for each loaded truck leaving the mine. The article went on to say how many of the state’s functions the Taliban had taken over, including running courts as well as a tax system. And yet I hear nobody complaining about a loss of sovereignty to the Taliban.

Let me be absolutely clear: the Taliban’s vision of how we should lead our lives is diametrically opposite mine. And since they do not believe in civilised discourse, they must be opposed by force. Just as I would not like to impose my views and beliefs on anybody, I will not have the Taliban (or anybody else) impose theirs on me. To think that we can make deals with them, as many in Pakistan do, is to live in a fool’s paradise.


Post a Comment

<< Home