Both Benazir Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif didn’t acquit themselves well in the “trial of democracy” from 1988 to 1993. They did worse confronting the “dilemma of democracy” from 1993-1999 – how an elected government can complete its five year term and also provide a level playing field to the “government-in-waiting” to turn the tables at the end of the period. In consequence, Pakistan was driven straight into the jaws of martial law in 1999.
This volume traces the rise and fall of the second Bhutto regime from 1993-96. It records how, through the good offices of the Establishment, she began on a conciliatory note with Nawaz Sharif by offering to nominate a consensus candidate (Wasim Sajjad) as President in exchange for jointly undoing the notorious Clause 58-2(B) of the 8th Constitutional Amendment which hung like the sword of Damocles over every prime minister. It tracks the negotiations to breaking point, compelling her to nominate her “own man”, Farooq Leghari, to the Presidency. It records Nawaz Shun cunning ways to drive a wedge between Leghari and Bhutto, which eventually led the former to use the 8th Amendment to sack the latter.
The major policy issues that preoccupied Benazir Bhutto in her second term were nuclear proliferation, MQM terrorism in Karachi and conflict in Kashmir. The book explains how the US applied economic and military sanctions to pressure Pakistan to cap, freeze and roll back its nuclear programme but failed to achieve its objective. It details how she successfully tackled and put down MQM terrorism through effective use of civil-military power. And it records how she teamed up with the military to promote jihad in India-Occupied Kashmir.
The book is about foul play by both Bhutto and Sharif; foreign policy blues; warlordism in Afghanistan; mythology of Mohajirism; nuclear policy; Mehrangate; General Mirza Aslam Beg’s “grand plan”; threat of an India-Pak nuclear war; journalists for sale; pains of privatization; Indo-Pak relations; doctrine of necessity; corruption and Surreygate. The analysis covers the mind of Benazir Bhutto, her Achilles heel and fatal flaws.
It is indispensable reading for the student of history who wishes to understand how and why democracy failed to take root in the 1990s. ISBN: 9789694026534 Publisher: VANGUARD BOOKS
Vol.1 Badakhshan and Northeastern Afghanistan; This area is of great culture and geopolitical intrests because it includes such remote areas as the wakhan corridor, once a buffer between the Russian and British empires and now and area where the borders of the Soviot Union, China and Indi-Pakistani subcontinent meet.
Vol.2 Farah and Southwestern Afghanistan; If we compare this area with the one convered in the Badakshan volume, we might characterised western Afghanistan as the seat of the ancient civilization and an area of paramount archaeological importance.
Vol.3 Herat and Northwestern Afghanistan; The history is outlined in the some detail, illustrating the fait of the town “which enjoys the preminence of having stood more seige than almost any other city in Central Asia, having been deepopulated and desteroyed offener and always having risen from her ruines, if not always renewed splendour, at all events with a vigar and a tanacity of life that is without a parrellel.
Vol.4 Mazar-i-Sharif and North-Central Afghanistan; The Oxus River vally, which forms the boundary between Afgahnistan and the Soviot Union, is described a considerable detail. Similiar attention is paid to the Band-i-Amir, one of the principal river of the provinence, which also carries the name Balakh Ab.
Vol.5 Kandahar and South-Central Afghanistan; It provides data on afghan tribes, including the Barechis, Ghilzais, and Durians-the latter is covered in a 70 pages Appendix. Mountains and various geographical feature are carefully examined, including the great desert region of Registan and Shorawak, which extend along the boundary with Iran in the west and Pakistan in the south.
Vol.6 Kabul and Southeast Afghanistan; It includes the history of Jalalabad, incidents from Anglo-Afghan wars, such as the British defets as Ghazni and the retreat through the Khurd Khaibar, Afghan tribes and ethnic communities, such as the, Pawindas, Ghilzias, Nuristanis, Kharotis, and others are discussed. ISBN: 3201012726 Publisher: AKADEMISCHE DRUCK- U. VERLAGSANSTALT GRAZ – AUSTRIA
Compared to post-invasion Iraq, Afghanistan seems a success story; but first impressions can be misleading. The country remains on a knife-edge, and the loss of momentum in its transition from the Taliban regime puts Afghanistan at grave risk of relapsing into dangerous insecurity.
Although many Afghans have contributed courageously to rescuing their country, and some key benchmarks have been achieved, Afghanistan continues to face severe difficulties. Elite political competition is fierce, and able ministehave been removed when deemed to be occupying too much of the limelight. President Hamid Karzai, while articulate and incorruptible, remains wedded to a politics of bargaining and networking that has seen unappetizing figures promoted to positions they have then abused. This has created space for the resurgence of the Taliban in the south, with Pakistani backing. The new Afghan National Army is proving too expensive to be locally sustainable, and the police force offeonly a pale shadow of what is needed. The predominance of opium in the economy poses the risk that Afghanistan could become a nacre-state, and on a range of human development indicatoit remains one of the world’s poorest countries, with popular frustration rising. While foreign governments have contributed large sums to reconstruction, too much money ahs gone to Western contractors, at the expense of local capacity.
It is not too late to turn things around, but time is running short. Only if the Afghan government re-focuses on the delivery of competent, clean and inclusive governance and the wider world ensures that its commitments match its rhetoric, is it at all likely that disaster can be avoided. ISBN: 1850658463 Publisher: C. HURST & CO