STRAIGHT TALK by Hafeez Khan

Overseas Pakistanis living in functioning democracies with robust justice systems can see both sides of the coin. It is both a strength and a curse. Democracies are not perfect anywhere and many rogue players test these limits strenuously. However, when these violations are exposed,the system reacts to safeguard the rule of law. It happenedin the recent conviction of Donald Trump on 34 felonycharges. The charges pertain to “hush money” payments to a porn star to prevent her from exposing her relation with Trump during 2016 Presidential Elections. The jury found multiple violations of State and Federal laws andfound enough evidence to convict him.

Donald Trump rose to prominence as a successful entrepreneur who had mastered the art of gaming financial institutions. He fudged his numbers to access money and has been convicted in another civil suit fining him hundreds of million dollars. He operates in gray areas as a master manipulator. From a developer to a socialite, he gained national prominence as a TV star. In 2016 heentered the political fray using his expertise acquired over decades to deploy his bag of tricks. It landed him the Presidency. His no holds barred approach while holding the most powerful position on earth endeared him to his followers. Trump surrounded himself with dicey operators and had no respect for norms or rule of law.

In his blind pursuit to be re-elected he created fake electoral delegates. When it became clear that he has lost, he tried to storm the Congress to prevent them from announcing the election results. His aggressive tactics like the now famous call to Georgia officials to find 11,000 votes, whether they exist or not, has landed him in trouble. He removed US official secret documents at the end of his term to maintain his political leverage. All these shenanigans are now in various courts where Trump has managed to obstruct progress. He is doing it in the hope that cases get delayed beyond Nov 2024 elections. He gets elected and either make these cases disappear or he can pardon himself.

Whatever the eventual outcome, I have given this backdrop to draw a parallel between Trump and our Pakistani version, Nawaz Sharif. Both are extreme narcissists, master manipulators of their respective systems for personal gains and have many skeletons in their closets. They have unmatched capacity to penetrate judiciary and use their appointees to gain favorable decisions. They are both loaded with money obtained through dubious means and enjoy lavish living like Mara Lago estate of Trump or Jati Umra palaces of Sharifs.

Pakistan has another tier of power structure that is not relevant in USA our military’s chokehold on power. Nawaz’s political birth was in their nursery. His rise to power has always been facilitated by the uniforms. This time is no different. London Plan conceived by General Bajwa and Nawaz Sharif has been fully adopted by General Asim Muneer. He has used atrocious means to enforce his absolute control using brute force and fear as his lead tactic. Fear has an expiry date, no one can live in perpetual fear; there comes a time when the suppressed state “bring it on!

For the last 60 years, military leaders have prevailed. This time around they have met resistance through Imran Khan never witnessed before. Despite every bullying tactic unleashed by the Generals, he refuses to submit. General Asim’s execution machinery is the CJ Supreme Court,ECP, ISI and his political proteges. Media has been completely subdued. His tactics are without shame and completely rely on lies.

Fortunately, honor is not entirely dead. After two years of deafening silence, self-respecting Judges have declared “enough is enough.” Kudos to Islamabad High Court fortaking the lead. Their majority are upholding the rule of law. Theft of Feb 8th elections is under scrutiny in 3 Islamabad NA seats. Blatant forgeries by ECP will be exposed and there is strong possibility of return of these seats to PTI. Once that process starts it will gain momentum through the resolve of CJ Punjab. It will unravel the falsehoods of a stolen mandate.  

A big deal is being made about IK’s tweet on fall of Dhaka. What is wrong with it? It is a statement of facts captured in Hamood Ur Rehman report and confirmed by NS himself. The real traitor is General Yahya. The cases being drummed up are another attempt to squeeze IK. Wimpswithin PTI leadership need to get a backbone.

The hearings in Supreme Court on reserved seats and NAB amendments are a historic opportunity for CJ SC to seek redemption for his unfair decisions thus far. Will other SC Justices stand up and carve their names in history or yield to expediency?  

The Formation Commanders were flogging a dead horse of May 9th. Repeating threats emanating from this false flag operation has no legs; an independent commission will be its death knell.

What is the contest boiling down to? It is a struggle to dismantle the iron grip of the army on power built over 60 years. It will ensure that all institutions perform within theirdomains as defined in Constitution. This battle royale will be decided on the streets and the economic meltdown leading to an unbearable inflation; not through guns and brutality. Generals must realize that the resulting chaos can only by channelized by IK, otherwise there will beanarchy that no one can suppress.  


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