Friday, October 19, 2007

Attack on Benazir Bhutto: setting the 'agenda'?

The attack on Ms. Bhutto may be an attempt to set the agenda for the new government that she is expected to form. It will be unfortunate for the masses if her pro-people agenda is hijacked by the so called war on terror!

There is a trend in the world wherein the newly elected governments or the parties and persons expected to form new governments are targeted through bombs or other violent means. Following are some of the examples:

(1) Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz was attacked in Attock by a suicide bomber when he was all set to become the Prime Minister of Pakistan.

(2) Madrid train bombings in Spain coincided with the expected victory of the socialist protagonists.

(3) British Prime Minister Gordon Brown was welcomed by the attempted bombings in London's heart and the Glasgow Airport.

(4) President Musharraf was attacked twice in December 2003 just a few days before he was to reach an agreement with the opposition parties over the Seventeenth Constitutional amendment and was to become a more secure president.

One can add to this list the 9/11 attacks in the incumbency of a new American president who was yet to set his agenda!

It seems that the powers that be intentionally or unintentionally goad the new and the expected new governments towards a tough policy against the Islamic militants by influencing their thought processes through violent spectacles.

The attack on Ms. Bhutto should be seen in this light. Reportedly, Ms. Bhutto had unemployment, inflation, education and other social issues has her priorities. She was to become the 'nurturer in chief'. The attack on her may change all that. She may now rethink are priorities and may be goaded to the tough stand against the insurgency in the Tribal belt. I am sure Ms. Bhutto will see through the smoke and keep her priorities intact. However, the danger will then remain of more attacks to force her to change her policies and priorities.

If Ms. Bhutto does form the new government and her policies are affected by the bombing incidents on 19 October 2007 then she will be playing into the hands of those who carried out or prompted these incidents.

It is said the socialist movements were hijacked by nationalism in early twentieth century. Are we seeing hijacking of pro-people policies by the so called 'war on terror'?

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