Beating of war drums

PPP, too, has declared war. The PML (N) was already on the warpath. And with their beating of war drums, the two have demonstrated conclusively how unsurpassable are their leaderships in intellectual bankruptcy, how unbeatable are they in immaturity, how incomparable are they in stupidity, and that they are no statesmen, not even politicians, but mere operators driven by their power lust. The nation’s true leaders they are not; slaves to their own selfishness they actually are. Not that the people were any much impressed by their alliance. A marriage of convenience they had said it was. Neither, they averred, was sincere to the other; both they perceived were deceiving each other. Parting of ways, anyway, is not an unheard phenomenon. Even in functional democracies, political alliances do break up. But were these times for these two to separate and declare war? Weren’t it these times to get united, not get divided; to reconcile, not fight, and to engage, not disengage? Aren’t we in the clutches of a deadly extremism vilely threatening to destroy us to the roots and make a Somalia of us? Aren’t lawlessness and criminality of all brands evaporating the little bit of sense of security our people are left with? Aren’t foreign investors getting increasingly scared of doing any business with us? Aren’t we in the thicket of a declining economy and living on foreign loans and doles? And aren’t outsiders from one to all proclaiming that we on the way of becoming a failed state, if not have we become already? So what is that has impelled these two parties’ leaderships to act so irresponsibly as have they? Of course, both have their cheerleaders, who do cheer. But it is only jeers, and in bucketfuls, that the street has for both the two. So blemished and culpable is their track record that neither has a moral ground to strike the posture of grandstanding as are they doing now. So ugly is their past that the street hates even to spit at it. And they are making it uglier with the day with their petty politics and power plays. Sure, their respective cheerleaders, in the media and in the intelligentsia, have hit the field, defending the indefensible. Some are frighteningly raising the spectre of jackboots marching in to roll up the democracy shop? But what democracy? We are no democracy; we are a plutocracy, pure and simple. What we have is a rule of the elite for the elite and by the elite. A democracy of the people for the people and by the people we palpably are not. Had we been one, these aristocrats would have dared not to play with the destiny of this nation’s mostly hapless 160 million people as playfully as they are? Still, this country is no personal property of anybody’s mama or papa; neither Asif Zardari’s nor Nawaz Sharif’s. It is owned by these heartlessly robbed and plundered 160 million people on whose sweat and blood have they stashed mountains of cash in foreign banks and built to themselves palatial homes and flourishing businesses abroad. And they are no people’s men; neither Zardari nor Nawaz. Had they been, neither would have had so deeply fractured poll mandate as they have, particularly Nawaz who couldn’t come out from the contest even as Punjab’s sole spokesman and subedar, although his fawning cheerleaders misleadingly project him to be a national leader which the election showed he was not. Even Zardari saw his PPP in the election being marginalised in Balochistan, trailing far behind in Punjab and Frontier, and cobbling up a tottering minority government at the Centre. So this puerile talk of their credentials of being national leaders should stop. Had indeed we been an emancipated democratic polity and had there been no aristocrats and oligarchs to dictate their enslaved constituents’ choice, the poll outcome would have been not what it was. There would have been other faces and true leaders in the real sense to lead this nation. Yet since the lady luck has smiled on these two, they must behave, and make not this land their abominable clashing egos’ battleground and this nation their silly fight’s unwilling victim. It is no participant in their selfish warfare. And spare it they must of this unwanted atrocity. Pull back they must even now, keep the street calm and start attending to the gigantic challenges confronting the nation internally and externally, lest they are thrown out by an angry people in the history’s dustbin for good.

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