On air: Will the world be more dangerous without Musharraf?

After being threatened with impeachment by the Pakistan parliament, President Pervez Musharraf has decided to step down . The charges against the President include violation of the constitution and gross misconduct. He has of course been one of the United States’ strongest allies in its war against Islamist extremism.There are concerns in Washington that Musharraf’s departure will open a new era of instability in the nuclear-armed country of 165 million people, as the fragile coalition jockeys for it’s share of power. The coalition, led by Asif Ali Zardari, the leader of the Pakistan Peoples Party, and Nawaz Sharif, the chairman of the Pakistan Muslim League-N, are scheduled to meet to discuss the way forward. According to the Constitution, a new president must be chosen within 30 days.

Is the US losing a key ally? Will the world be more dangerous without Musharraf, or was he becoming ineffective?

In recent weeks the US has accused Pakistan of not doing enough to stop Taliban fighters from crossing the border into Afghanistan to attack American soldiers.

Musharraf hasn’t delivered Osama Bin Laden, it’s claimed terrorist training camps are flourishing in Pakistan – so could this be a new beginning of a new safer era? Or will there be a knee jerk reaction against working with the US and the West?

99 Responses to “On air: Will the world be more dangerous without Musharraf?”

  1. 1 steve
    August 18, 2008 at 14:45

    I find it hard to believe he’s leaving. He came to power via a military coup. They usually don’t leave except in a body-bag.

  2. 2 Vijay
    August 18, 2008 at 14:52

    It won’t make any difference,the USA will get the same kind of help and cooperation as before(If they had strong objections to the removal of Musharaff ,they have a lot of leverage on the PAK leadership).

  3. August 18, 2008 at 14:54

    Yes! Exactly Musharraf’s resignation is the beginning of a new era in the history of Pakistan. It is time to think deeply about the future of the country (Pakistan). There are many challenges for general public where as there is no security, violation of human right and so on.

    In other hand, neither US losing key ally nor the world will be more dangerous without Musharraf because a person who came from army chief into politics only for a personal ambitions never represent and respect the voices of people of that country. It means he/she only think about personal safetly and personal power. So, how he/she could think about world’s peace, safety and prosperity? And how could be the key ally?

  4. 4 Shaun in Halifax
    August 18, 2008 at 14:56

    The answer to this question, like all questions of this nature, is “It depends.” It depends on whether he appoints a successor or there is a conflict over succession. It depends on what India’s response is. It depends on how the next leader is chosen. It depends on whether or not the other regional powers sense weakness in Pakistan and decide to make a move. Right now there’s too many unknowns to say yay or nay.

  5. 5 nelsoni
    August 18, 2008 at 15:03

    No It will not. With terrorists still very much around, the World is not likely to be any less safer or more dangerous with or with out Musharaff. And I would like to ask since when did Musharaff become a guage for the safety of the world?

  6. 6 Katharina in Ghent
    August 18, 2008 at 15:12

    What exactly is it that Musharraf has done that has made “the world” a safe place so far? He may have been an ally to the US, but since he more or less allowed the terrorists to operate from his country (or at least wasn’t able to do much against them), I don’t think that his influence will be missed a lot. Most likely the army will push to have someone from their ranks to replace him, and then the status quo will be established again.

  7. 7 Vijay
    August 18, 2008 at 15:21

    His political usefulness was over

  8. 8 Rufaa Sheikh in Mandera
    August 18, 2008 at 15:24

    Musharaf’s resignation is likely to make Pakistan peaceful but will not help deter the global terrorism threat. Attacks on civillians are also likely to reduce. It is because of Musharaf’s callous personal interest many innocent Pakistanis lost their lives. His presence has been awful for the ordinary people in that country. The U.S may have lost a key ally in the fight against terrorism but it is a moment of great relief for Pakistanis. The U.S and Musharaf should care about the suffering of the innocent so that they can too be helpful in eradicating what according to U.S are “hardline Islamists” .

  9. 9 Robert
    August 18, 2008 at 15:27

    Was it safe with him? For ever action he has done to support the US and NATO he has done something or not done something which then undermines the effort.

    It is irrelevant to world safety that he is gone. What is important is who replaces him. It doesn’t appear to be clear. Obviously an extreme fundamentalist group would impact security. Conversely an extremely pro American candidate could also be dangerous because any insensitivity to opponents could spark a political revolt so strong that the outcomes are unpredictable. A weak compromise president will just sit on the fence allowing a swell of ground level support for the extremists that will cause trouble in future. Pakistan’s and the worlds best hope is for a strong willed candidate who has the desire and ability to work with both the rest of the world and the religious in Pakistan itself. I’m not sure you this could be.

    Pakistan needs to show that it is independent and willing to following an agenda that suites them, not one dictated by either the US or terrorists.

  10. 10 Bob in Queensland
    August 18, 2008 at 15:41

    More dangerous? Probably not. Musharraf’s contribution to the so-called “war on terrorism” was much more evident in his rhetoric than in his actions.

  11. August 18, 2008 at 16:06

    Hi gang ! :-)…The resignation of Mr Musharaf gives a very valuable lesson to all the 3rd world leaders : If you sell your soul to the US government on the account of your own people, then in the end only loneliness will remember your name… With my love… Yours forever, Lubna in Baghdad…

  12. 12 steve
    August 18, 2008 at 16:21

    Hopefully Musharaff will surrender Pakistan’s nuclear weapons to a responsbile nation.

  13. 13 Mohammed Ali
    August 18, 2008 at 16:21

    The new Pakistani president will still need the support of the US and the US too will need his/her support. Remember when Musharraf took over through military coup he never had the support and backing of the US. In fact his government was placed under US sanctions. When the US needed his support, they dropped the sanctions, began giving both military financial support. In return they got Musharraf’s support for the “War on Terror.”

    I have no doubt in my mind that the next president of Pakistan will continue the support to America in the “War on Terror”

  14. 14 Asad_Babyl
    August 18, 2008 at 16:29

    I believe the world will become more dangerous with the departure of Mr. Musharraf. His resignation leaves a political vacuum in Pakistan which in turn provides an opportunity for Islamic fundamentalist who have denmonstrated themselves to be the greatest threat to civilization of our time.

  15. August 18, 2008 at 16:32

    Musharraf’s resignation will weaken the security with regard to nuclear technology in a country like Pakistan where bribery and corruption is common in the every day lives of its people. Unless strict security is maintained to guard against the possibility of some clandestined organisation acquiring the tecnology by covert means the world will be far more dangerous situation than it is today. It is bad enough Iran is developing nuclear weapons with long range missiles to deliver warheads, this must be stopped at any cost. Its leaders openly stated they seek to destroy Israel. Iran is also a threat to neighbouring countries, if deolomacy fails to refrain Iran to give up its nuclear developments it is only a matter of time some action will be taken to force them to do so.
    Will Pakistan continue to fight the terrorists effectively, without Mucharraf being in power?, its left to be seen.

  16. 16 steve
    August 18, 2008 at 16:33

    Anyone want to place bets on when the next coup will be there? A country as inherently unstable (lots of coups, also an islamist movement) as pakistan shouldn’t have nuclear weapons. It’s like giving a gun to a 4 year old. A really bad idea.

  17. 17 Mohammed Ali
    August 18, 2008 at 16:37

    It could be within the next month or so. It is just like Africa.

  18. 18 Paul W
    August 18, 2008 at 16:45

    Never mind world peace, will it affect their constant cheating at cricket ?

  19. 19 roebert
    August 18, 2008 at 16:48

    Whatever his shortcomings, Musharraf has been a strong-man figure against Islamic fundamentalism. It’s hard to say just to what extent he has been effective in holding back fundamentalist forces because he has also been a bit of a prevaricating, duplicitous political rascal.

    Still, better the devil you know than the devil you don’t, and I think the next Pakistani leader is bound to be a populist (i.e. Islamist) radical. So, I’d say that things will probably go from bad to worse.

  20. 20 archibald in oregon
    August 18, 2008 at 16:49

    No more dangerous than it is with the current U.S. president and he has more “nukular” weapons……Musharraf the puppet will soon be replaced with another, maybe he or she will be a good puppet, though not likely with puppets…..

  21. August 18, 2008 at 16:57

    Chloe Tilly, Pakistan is a haven for Al Qaeda. You remember them, right? The alleged reason the U.S. and its “Coalition of the Willing” invaded Iraq in the first place? The question should be why did the Bush Administration ever supported Musharraf in the first place.

    Bush’s unflagging support for Musharraf – a military dictator – flies in the face of everything his Administration has claimed to be working toward. If his aim is to spread Democracy, as he says it is, why has his administration been proping up military dicators like Musharraf and autocrats like Saakashvili who take military action against civilians they claim are their own people?

    And why – if we have such an irreplaceable ally in Musharraf, as you argue, Ms. Tilly – is Osama bin Laden still at large, possibly within the borders of our so-called ally’s nation? Benazir Bhutto was assassinated to prevent democratic rule from taking seed in Pakistan, and ultimately, kept Musharraf in power until today. With political assassinations and the presence of Al Qaeda and possibly Osama bin Laden in Pakistan how, Ms. Tilly, would you reason that Musharraf has kept the region “stable?”

    This will probably keep my comment from being posted, but are you getting your talking points from Dick Cheney?

  22. August 18, 2008 at 16:59

    @ Steve

    As usual, you’re being naive. You might have heard about Pakistan’s long-term nuclear rival to the south – India. Pakistan can no more afford to surrender their nukes than Russia or the U.S. can.

  23. 23 steve
    August 18, 2008 at 17:02

    @ Jack

    Yes, I’m sure the Indians are absolutely thrilled about the prospect of some insane religious fanatics gaining control of nuclear weapons. Something tells me if there’s ever nuclear war between India and Pakistan, it won’t be started by India.

  24. 24 Venessa
    August 18, 2008 at 17:02

    I wasn’t aware that Musharraf made the world safer…..

  25. 25 Asad_Babyl
    August 18, 2008 at 17:13

    @ Vanessa

    That’s right. Musharraf made the world more dangerous because he took a stand against Islamic radicalism.

    You know, if you ignore them, they’ll just go away. Or at least they won’t shoot you outright.

  26. 26 Roberto
    August 18, 2008 at 17:15

    Musharraf hasn’t delivered Osama Bin Laden,

    ——— Musharraf is an unusual combination of savvy strongman and Pakistani patriot.

    He’s walked a tightrope of keeping the lid on a long simmering pot with a history of boilovers. He still is connected at the top levels of the miltary, and he will be back as that’s what Pakistani pols do. They make comebacks when the system goes haywire after their forced departures.

    As far as Bin Laden goes, the US blew that ages ago by allowing him to escape in the opening stage of the Afghan war. It’s a dirty little well known secret that nobody wants to talk about, just like American patrols through Afghani poppy fields.

    War on Drugs no more valid than the War on Terrorism or the current Pakistani government. Can only pray that the world will not have to endure another nuclear standoff between Pakistan and India again in the meantime.

  27. 27 Mohammed Ali
    August 18, 2008 at 17:17

    Venessa August 18, 2008 at 5:02 pm

    I wasn’t aware that Musharraf made the world safer…

    I can’t agree with you more.

  28. 28 Suresh
    August 18, 2008 at 17:22

    The army is the only thing that matters in Pakistan. Musharaff didn’t resign as much as General Kayani withdrew support to him.

    Essentially, for Indians, they have to deal with a dictatorship propped up with American aid, Chinese nuclear knowhow and N Korean missiles. Musharaff is product of a vicious system that thrives on Islamic fanaticism and anti-Indian sentiment. He was particularly active in training Islamic jihadis to perform acts of terror in various Indian cities and countries around the world. Let’s not forget that the 9-11 financiers were PAkistani, all four UK bombers on 7-11 were Pakistani and hundreds of Taliban were essentially Pakistani. Musharaff’s crowning achievement was the invasion of India in Kargil bringing the world dangerously close to a nuclear exchange.

    However, his exit does not change the ground rules or the dangers posed by this terrorist state. The next incumbent will be equally vicious and will be possibly another Musharaff clone with one finger on the nuclear trigger.

    The US may have won the cold war in Afghanistan with Pakistan’s help. The price for this victory is being paid with the blood of 80,000 Indians.

  29. 29 Roberto
    August 18, 2008 at 17:28

    Benazir Bhutto was assassinated to prevent democratic rule from taking seed in Pakistan, and ultimately, kept Musharraf in power until today.

    ——- Musharraf had more assassination attempts on him than Bhutto ever had.

    That’s the way business is conducted in this part of the world at any rate. Pakistan is a failed state and always has been. Musharraf could have easily barred her entry and done much more to keep his hold on power consolidated as a strongman.

    Only in tooth faery world did Bhutto ever represent democratic rule. She came in with a big bullseye on her back and a “shoot me stupid” sign on her front. Nobody of any veracity expected her to live long, so the expected happened.

    The only mystery is why she made herself a martyr. Devil is in the details which remain hidden in private power brokering deals.

  30. 30 Nick
    August 18, 2008 at 17:33

    As an American living in San Francisco, California, far away from most of the world’s discord, I think it is a bit more dangerous in the short term but amazingly great potential for the long term. We have a Pakistani leader leaving office without an (overt) push from the military or, as someone stated earlier, in a body bag.
    We have a chance to see governing power change without a lot of violence. Lets see what happens over the next couple of months.

  31. 31 Jack
    August 18, 2008 at 17:41

    @ Steve

    Not surprisingly, you miss the point entirely. It’s called MAD (mutually assured destruction) for a reason: we have nukes, they have nukes; they won’t shoot theirs at us at us, because if we do, we’ll shoot ours at them. It also makes disarmament an impossibility – as the last 18 years since the fall of Soviet Communism have proven. Your notion that Pakistan should simply surrender their weapons because you think they’re fanatical shows one-dimensional thinking on your part. By definition, your inability to see more than one side of an issue, coupled with your pattern of non-critical acceptance of propaganda reveals your own fanaticism.

  32. 32 Brett
    August 18, 2008 at 17:42

    I’m more interested to see what the US will do to ‘facilitate’ a new leader [puppet] if the people of the country would rather someone step up to lead instead of play the US’ obedient puppy like Ole G Dubya and Condie would prefer. We shall see…

  33. 33 Raj
    August 18, 2008 at 17:43

    There are few politicians or army men, who may be in a position to advance peace with India.

    Anybody who comes to power in Pakistan, will either be too weak like Gillani, too insecure like Zardari or Nawaz, or too jingoistic like the Islamists or Armymen. Even if the right person ascends the throne in Pakistan, he may need years and years to fully understand that the Islamist Agenda is an illusion and come down from revolutionary rhetoric. Musharraf needed about 5 years, before he arrived at this conclusion. The person will also need time to win the trust in New Delhi for any durable peace.

    In an open field of populist rhetoric, most politicians would rather shout anti-India slogans, than wish to be seen as getting too cosy with India. It is unlikely that the relations with India will remain as good as they were in the later years of President Musharraf.

    Not just India, even on the Taliban Front, no politician would really dare to stand up to the fundamentalists. More radicalization of the Pakistani society is to be expected. Last time when a civilian setup was in Pakistan, there was hardly any Pakistani Taliban around. Besides Politicians in Pakistan hate the use of force against anybody, even for protection of its citizens.

  34. 34 1430a
    August 18, 2008 at 17:44

    hello everone,
    i dont know about the world but yes Pakistan will be more safer.It is good news that Musharraf has resigned because the situation was getting heated up and some change had to come.this is a very goo news for all Pakistanis.
    My heartiest Mubarak to everyone from Pakistan.

  35. 35 Jack
    August 18, 2008 at 17:45

    @ Asad_Babyl

    RE: your rebuttal to Vanessa

    Do you mean “bury our head in the sand,” like Musharraf did with regard to the the presence of Al Qaeda in Pakistan, or like Bush did with regard to Musharraf being an Eastern version of Sadaam Hussein?

  36. 36 steve
    August 18, 2008 at 17:46

    @ JACK

    MAD only works when both sides are rational. Are you telling me that some islamists that take over are rational? Ie, do you think getting killed for god and going to heaven is rational?

    Since we have NO idea who will take control in the next coup, is this a risk the world should take?

  37. 37 Jack
    August 18, 2008 at 17:51

    @ Roberto

    So . . . If I’m following your logic: the number of attempts on his life because he’s a despot somehow justifies the successful assassination of Bhutto and/or his continued dictatorship?

  38. 38 Sulayman Dauda
    August 18, 2008 at 17:51

    certainly the world is much safer without Musharaf. and if any one argue then why the world was safer without Ardolf Hitler?. Musharaf need to be challenge by the International Criminal Court for Human right violation hiding under the Banner of war against terror for his personal political archievment.

  39. 39 Suresh
    August 18, 2008 at 17:52


    It is not a “notion” that Pakistan is fanatical. Let’s not forget where Daniel Pearl’s killers, Osama’s foot soldiers, the 7-11 London bombers, 9-11 financiers and hordes of Islamic jihadis get protection, funding and training.

    There is reams of evidence from tens of countries that are at the receiving end of Pakistani-generated Islamic terror. Also do not forget the AQ Khan nuclear “supermarket” which sold nuclear technology and weapons to Iran, N Korea and Libya.

    It’s okay for you to ask for “fairness” and MAD and assorted nonsense. Come live next to these jihadis as their neighbour and then talk.

    If there’s any country that deserves to be immediately stripped of nuclear weapons on account of proliferation and instability, it is Pakistan.

  40. 40 Gautam
    August 18, 2008 at 17:57

    Musharraf was a statesman like Bismark, a soldier like Rommel. I will even go so far as to say that in War he was a combination of Zukov, Patton and Monty all rolled into one. And in Peace? In Peace he stood taller than the tallest mountain, drwafing all others, for above all in his heart he wanted piece. I remember General Zia once saying that he brought the rule of law in Pakistan, the same can be said of General Musharraf. Under him justice was done and was seen to be done in Pakistan. It is said that his favorite subject was mathematics, so he could always outcalculate and outclass all his opponents. He was 400% nay 1000% better than his rivals. He was deeper than the deepest ocean, if you know what I mean. He deserved the Nobel Peace prize for bringing PEACE to South Asia. The whole world lost this chance of bringing honor to the Nobel Prize by naming him recipient. Is there anyone who deserves this more than this humble man of the soil? To know him was to love him and admire him. General Musharraf, where ever you go, be it Saudi, Turkey or even the humdrum US, we will always remember you and miss you. A special corner of our heart is reserved for you. Goodbye Sir, and may Allmighty Allah protect you.

  41. 41 Jack
    August 18, 2008 at 18:04


    What are you using as a metric for what’s rational? Starting a war in Iraq when we still hadn’t caught Osama bin Laden wasn’t rational, but we went anyway (though WMDs never materialized) – and we’re still there, bucking a timeline, even though their democratically elected gov’t is asking us to leave. So, by that metric the U.S. isn’t rational, hence we should give up our nukes, right?

    Hopefully I’ve made my point.

  42. 42 Shaun in Halifax
    August 18, 2008 at 18:06

    @ Steve

    I suspect that the chance of a nuclear exchange between Pakistan and India is very slim. Like the old US vs. USSR, the redphones are in place and the back channels are always open. Precicely BECAUSE the threat of nuclear war is always at the forefront, the chances of it are slimmer because everybody is aware of it.

  43. 43 steve
    August 18, 2008 at 18:12

    @ Jack

    Fearing death is rational. Thinking you’re going to heaven for killing people is irrational. Are you telling me that say if Iran had nuclear weapons, that MAD would apply? or say the Taliban had nuclear weapons. Do you think MAD would apply? I don’t think so, because they are insane religious fanatics.

    Remember, in the west, when our politicians talk about “God” they are doing so to get elected. People like the taliban actually believe in the stuff. If Pakistan has an islamist takeover, the world is in MAJOR trouble.

  44. 44 Shaun in Halifax
    August 18, 2008 at 18:14

    “Heavily accented English” hilarious. Highly entertaining guest.

  45. 45 Brett
    August 18, 2008 at 18:15

    “Heavily accented English” hilarious. Highly entertaining guest.

    Haha, I was just about to say the same thing!

  46. 46 Sabs
    August 18, 2008 at 18:15

    Can Saeeda explain how world or Pakistan will be free of terrorism without Musharraf?? Does PPP have better plans or allies who will do a better job??

  47. August 18, 2008 at 18:16

    The world will be a safer place without Musharraf in power. His contributions to the “war on terror” have been negligible at best; at worst, he has allowed the Taliban to re-group and instead focused his energy on retaining power and exacerbating the conflict with India. He was a dictator-minded leader whose suspension of the constitution demonstrated a complete disregard for the ideals of democracy. Now we must allow the democratically elected Pakistani legislature to do its job. Good on them for prompting Musharraf to abdicate, it was long overdue.

  48. 48 Suresh
    August 18, 2008 at 18:16


    Try being an “infidel” nation next to a fanatical Islamic nation and then advise complacency. The chances of nuclear war is one bearded fundoo away who can convince the finger on the trigger that it is a religious “duty” to nuke the idol worshippers to kingdom come.

  49. 49 Shaun in Halifax
    August 18, 2008 at 18:18

    It’s almost like that one guest is like “You are entitled to your opinion, even though it is wrong. And here’s why you’re wrong.”

  50. 50 Sabs
    August 18, 2008 at 18:20

    Sofia! Bravo…what you just said absolutely 100% represents most of us Pakistani as well as Pakistani-Americans.

  51. 51 Jack
    August 18, 2008 at 18:21

    @ Suresh

    I appreciate what you’ve been through. I grew up during the Cold War, wondering every night when I went to bed, if the world as I knew it, would be there when I awoke the next morning, We had the same feelings about the Soviets that you have about the Pakistanis; they would shoot first, we would just defend ourselves. That was always the scenario. And I’m sure that Russians felt the same way. Likewise, Pakistanis fear Indian nukes as Russians must have (and likely still) fear American ICBMs. It’s the reason we can’t disarm.

    So, respectfully, if you think Pakistan should be stripped of their nukes, whose army is going to take them (since they won’t surrender them), by what authority, and how will that authority be validated on the world stage?

  52. 52 Sabs
    August 18, 2008 at 18:21

    Could WHYS have a better guest than Saeeda who cared more about the accent than the matter in hand??

  53. August 18, 2008 at 18:24

    So which should the west support?

    A dictator with US backing or a democratically elected supporter of the Taliban and al Qaeda?

  54. 54 Sabs
    August 18, 2008 at 18:25

    Problem is that the current government of Paksitan will not let anybody that “rational” to replace Musharraf!

  55. 55 Jack
    August 18, 2008 at 18:25

    @ Steve

    You’re making platitudes without supporting your statements. See my comments to Suresh.

  56. 56 Suresh
    August 18, 2008 at 18:30


    The US-USSR analogy is incorrect and does not fit the India-Pakistan scenario at all.

    Indian nuclear weapons are under an EXPLICIT declared non-first use doctrine.

    Pakistani weapons are
    1. Technologically unstable (stolen Dutch / Chinese designs)
    2. Under the control of military dicators (single point of failure – i.e one madman can end it all)
    3. Under the influence of religious nutcases (Islamist supremacists who see it as their declared duty to cleanse the world of kafir infidels)

    Do not equate the two. This fundamental mistake made by western observers sitting in distant places has brought us all closer to armageddon.

    I think the Pakistani nukes must be taken down by those who bankrolled them in the first place. They will not be given easily and must be preceeded by sanctions – economic and military. Finally the Israel-style Osirak-kind of option is open. Stolen technology in the hands of religious fanatics is enough moral justification and needs no “special” authority.

  57. 57 Sunil
    August 18, 2008 at 18:31

    The problem in Pakistan is probably a problem commonly found in its neighboring regions too (Central Asian rebublics, North Indian region etcetera); if you look outside the main cities, there are various tribes that prefer to operate according to their own rules. It is hard for any leader to garner support among them. The well known fact that Waziristan etcetera is a save haven for fundamentalists makes it neccessary to gain some reasonable control in this region.

    Furthermore, considering the internal conflict between the two main parties in Pakistan politics (and corruption which is common even in neighbouring India etcetera), it just makes you wonder how they can deal with this when they can’t deal with themselves working together.

    Thus, maybe this is why Musharaf was effective; in such a scenario, “totalitarian” rule is effective until all the corruption is removed and some stability has been brought.

  58. 58 Suresh
    August 18, 2008 at 18:34


    Besides Pakistan’s nukes are under a DECLARED first-use doctrine.

    Name one other country with a first use policy.

  59. 59 Shaun in Halifax
    August 18, 2008 at 18:34

    @ Suresh

    I didn’t mean or intend to convey complacency at all. I merely meant that the infrastructure to prevent an all-out war is in place, thereby significantly mitigating full-scale nuclear exchange between the two countries. Should one bearded whacko get ahold of a nuclear weapon and – God forbid – use it, the established protocols may in fact prevent an all-out retaliation because of the communication lines. If it is a bearded whacko, then the Pakistani representatives will tell that to the Indian ones and the proper procedures can be implemented to find the perpetrator instead of full-on nuclear exchange.

  60. 60 Brett
    August 18, 2008 at 18:34

    So which should the west support?

    A dictator with US backing or a democratically elected supporter of the Taliban and al Qaeda?

    Well if your using Gee Dubyas blind reasoning for supporting or not supporting nations or leaders, then of course, go with Democracy…. The only thing that boils that dedicated American’s blood more than non-Democracy is Turrists though…. He may be torn in that case… Poor mans head would probably explode from conflicting inputs….

    Support a democratically elected supporter of whoever, they are a soverign nation. If / When a turrist attack is made, it will be an act of war.

    I’m not too sure the US has such a good record in supporting dictators or regimes….. Especially if the dictator is against the will of the majority, why would we impose our leadership on another country? [well besides the point that we already do and have done for quite sometime all across the world]

  61. 61 Muhammad Asim Munir
    August 18, 2008 at 18:34

    Hi WHYS!

    I hope you all are fine.

    I don’t know about the world but we Pakistanis feel that we are much safer without Musharraf. The world will feel this too but later when the “inner story” appears on the world’s satge.

    Muhammad Asim Munir
    Gujranwala, Pakistan.

  62. 62 Shaun in Halifax
    August 18, 2008 at 18:35

    Because we all know that a knee-jerk reaction is always the best and wisest choice in any situation. Taking the time to carefully analyze the situation and form a rational opinion and response just muddies the issue.

  63. 63 Bill
    August 18, 2008 at 18:35

    Pakistan is not going to have democracy any time soon. The CIA is going to put Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, the Pakistani Army Chief of Staff, in power. A free and democratic Pakistan is not in the Bush administration’s best interests. A military strongman is rather helpful to the administration because he is easier to manipulate than a democratic goverment.

  64. 64 F
    August 18, 2008 at 18:42

    Its a shame for Syeda Abida Hussain to be on BBC and lie so vehemently about Pakistan and its people. The new ‘democratic’ govt hasn’t done anything in the past four months. Also when she refers to democratic process please keep in mind that all of Asif Ali Zardari’s past crimes were waved after the elections, which is NOT democratic. Asif Ali Zardari, is the leader of PPP and was instrumental in impeachment .Impeaching Musharraf at this point achieves nothing but fulfilling personal agenda of Zardari and Nawaz. Pakistani economy, internal safety, energy resources and international relations are at there worst. At this point in time impeaching Musharraf doesn’t accomplish anything for Pakistan.

    So suggest to Mrs. Hussain is to please stop talking rubbish, especially in the international new arena.

    Her, Zardari and PPP are a disgrace to Pakistan and its people. Because they have no vested interest in Pakistan or its people, all they care about is power and money. Its time Pakistani people woke up and saw the light.

  65. 65 Mirwaise Sadaat
    August 18, 2008 at 18:44

    My question is that was it Musharaf who supported Taliban and Al-Qaida and gave them a safe heaven in the tribal areas after the fall of taliban in Afghanistan or the Pakistani Army and Intellegence Service (ISI)?
    If it was Musharaf policy who supported Taliban and Al-Qaida then the World will be more safer without him, but if it is Pakistani army and ISI who supports Taliban and Al-Qaida, then for sure the world will be more dangerous without Musharaf.

    I appreciate the response from the guest speakers.

    Thank you.

    Mirwaise Sadaat from Afghanistan

  66. 66 steve
    August 18, 2008 at 18:51

    Once again, Israel gets blamed for the problems in the Muslim world? I think it’s time for people in Pakistan to realize that they are a failed, third world state due to their own actions, and not the US or Israel.

  67. 67 Sabs in Michigan
    August 18, 2008 at 18:52

    Dwight in Cleveland, the “democratically elected” government was elected by the people who were paid to go and vote. Benazir’s party arranged for buses to go to the villages, take them to the booth, pay them to vote, not one time but many, many times…flaw in the system, yes! Democratically elected, I think not! Corrupt, sure. Cutting deals with the Taliban, absolutely!

  68. 68 Sunil
    August 18, 2008 at 18:58

    (With reference to BBC discussion going on on air) how can you make pin-point strikes. I mean look at the fight against the Taleban in Afganistan, its not easy. This is what we call in the military “Fighting In Fortified Objective (FIFO).” Its not easy especially when you have a civilian population around. For example, the Taleban does take cover in this civilian population. I am sure that the fighters in Waziristan will do the same if the PAkistani authorities/US take the war against them to that level.

    And the fighters in Waziristan will exaggerate civialian deaths to start a propaganda war. This is textbook stuff. ITs kind of impossible to deal with this without a high casuality toll among the civialians. The Israelis learned this when fighting Hezbollah and PLO (note: just an example!). The US learned this when clearing Fallujah (Iraq) too (note: these examples are “Fighting in Build Up Objectives” (FIBUA) which is just as tough as FIFO)

    So please, this is not some computer war game. We are not at the point (technologically) were we can execute this with pin point accuracy (accurate to the point where we cause no civilian casualties etcetera)

  69. 69 Sehr
    August 18, 2008 at 19:03


    please watch this documentry whoever is very sad at him leaving

  70. 70 gary
    August 18, 2008 at 19:27

    When President Pervez Musharraf steps down the US will not be lose a valuable ally. The world will not be in significantly more danger form the absence of Musharraf than it is in currently due to its collective stupidity. Pakistan’s nuclear weapons are a clear threat, both to itself and to its neighbots. All I can say to India is,”Y’all wanted to join the club, welcome to it.”

  71. 71 Roberto
    August 18, 2008 at 19:41

    So . . . If I’m following your logic

    ——– No, you were not following my logic.

    I’m just reporting on the historical realities. Pakistan is a failed state in a constant flux of anarchy. What little stability has come from the military which seems to be somewhat secular, highly competant and principled compared to the pols. Assassinations are the way business is conducted in anarchies.

    Bhutto, like all leaders there has many enemies, and that’s what enemies do in that part of the world. How you transcribe current conditions to me somehow justifying assassination speaks more to your wanting to transpose reality into something to fit your politics.

  72. 72 Jack
    August 18, 2008 at 19:47

    @ Suresh

    And Russia had a nuclear meltdown at Chernobyl, showing the world that they shouldn’t be allowed to play with nukes. Funny how 3-mile Island was downplayed in the West. The other guy is nuts, we’re sane. The other guy says the same thing about us. Nevermind the fact that we’re both so insane that we actually have these weapons that will destroy everything except cockroaches in the first place.

    Again, your point is moot. No one is going to take their nukes, and they’re not going to surrender them. Your country gets to repeat our mistakes, having your own nuclear rivalry.

    So welcome to our nuclear fraternity, Suresh. Sooner or later, someone is going to push the button, because you’d have to be crazy to want a weapon like that it the first place.

  73. 73 Alwyn
    August 18, 2008 at 20:13

    Musharaff changed nothing. After Musharaff also nothing much will change. As far as nukes are concerned they are already in the wrong hands specially for India and soon for the West too.

    The Pakistani Army and ISI are one and same. Taliban is an asset to them. They will never allow US to destroy Taliban. Musharaff is a part of that set up that is guarding it’s assets the Taliban. ISI is Taliban.

    Musharaff skillfully 2 timed the West like many of his predecessors. Pakistan has developed this into an art. Kiyani may be a new learner, but he’ll learn fast.

    The basic aim of the Pakistani state is to establish Islamic rule all over India. Towards that end Jihad has to continue in Kashmir. For that it needs radicalized zealots. For that they need strategic depth. That is provided by Taliban.

    Pakistani’s just wish the Americans left the Taliban and went away. They’re already 80% talibanized. Pakistani’s will accept another 20% without qualms.

    Good luck to India and the rest of the world.

  74. August 18, 2008 at 20:59

    It is gobsmack indecent to equate the will of the people in Pakistan with the will of one man and call it democracy! If all, or at least half, of the 11 billion $ of US military aid had been diverted to development aid , checking corruption and fostering grass roots democracy in the affectd NWFP and border areas they might have been all holding US flags, not AK47s. If, as Musharaff said once on TV, who are the Taliban? Taliban, he said, are the local race of people in border areas of Pakistan and in South Afgahnsistan. Clearer definition of the targetted individuals who were involved in 9/11 is therefore needed. Targetting a race of people has won more enemies than friends.

  75. 75 Raz
    August 18, 2008 at 21:00

    . Shocking and feel pity for the nation of Pakistan. Being a Pakistani feel bad and absurd that General resigned. This country was in catastrophic situation with these corrupt politicians around the country. I believe and feel the situation was more or less the same as group of coward Hyena’s have attacked a brave Lion stranded alone in serengati jungle and wounding the lion from all sides and lion retaliated but finally given up the resistance.

    I feel sorry for the nation as this gentleman served the country as a General and Chief of Army Staff and finally he have no place in the country he served and saved on many occasions, when the country was on the sharp edge of a knife. Feel sorry for the nation who selected these corrupt politicians who were given chances twice and they looted this country as much as they can and here again given the control to this corrupt mafia.

    I do not know when the nation will wake up to see what is right and wrong or we have to feel sorry or pity for the nation for don’t know how long….. May Almighty protect this country.

  76. 76 John LaGrua/New York
    August 18, 2008 at 22:04

    Add another item to Bush failures..US foriegn policy should not be based on transitory personal relationships A more sophisticated approach must be to have a broad understanding of other countries ,culture ,language and history .The US is woefully ill equipted to operate in a multi-polar world as Iraq painfully showed .Bush ‘s view of Putin’s soul was ludicrous and clearly dangerous .Pakistan has long loked like potential loose cannon ,nukes and political instability make a very threatening combination and we have few options to influence events .Any clumsiness by the West could tragically tip the balance toward the radicals Te US should begin a serious program to train young people in foreign language ,cutural and historical knowledge of significant countries .such skills would have enormous value in government and the private sector creating real economic opportunities and benefits.

  77. 77 Shakhoor Rehman
    August 18, 2008 at 22:09

    I welcome Mushie’s departure as long as his successor is not A.Q. Khan.

  78. 78 Jens
    August 18, 2008 at 22:20


    what about chaka khan………:)


  79. 79 carter
    August 18, 2008 at 23:34

    Good riddance. Hope peace returns to the panshir and kunar valleys…

  80. 80 Virginia Davis
    August 18, 2008 at 23:41

    I am glad Pakistan is moving into a new phase of its government.

    Re its nuclear arms, it has been my understanding that the military is in control and is a fairly stable institution.

    Will WHYSers in Pakistan and thereabouts comment on my perception?

    Virginia in Oregon

  81. 81 Suresh
    August 19, 2008 at 05:09


    Let’s see what you’re choosing to equate:

    – The world’s largest secular democracy with a perfect nuclear safety record and no proliferation history


    – A fanatical Islamic theocracy run by tinpot military dictatorships that has proliferated nuclear weapons to Iran, Libya and N Korea (such august company)

    As for taking the nukes down, this can be done with a comprehensive economic and military sanctions regime. They are close to broke already and are dependent on US handouts to keep their regime going. The US armed them, so they should disarm them as well.

    Or leave it to India and Israel to sort it out the Osirak way.

  82. 82 habib
    August 19, 2008 at 05:47

    I think this is nothing other than exegeration, that “will the world be more dangerous without Mushraf”. 2marrow it will also be asked that “will the world be more dangerous without Bush or USA”.
    these two questions are of the same nature, its answer will be opposite, i mean the world will be more safe than before if there is no Dogy of U.S like Mushraf. Or The mad Dog like Bush. so, if the world including U.S wanta properous and peaceful world they have to oppose the policy of terroring the 3rd world countries by imposing the so called war against terror.
    the inccident of 9/11 was a great tragedy! but no one is sure about the fact that either it was an attack or a planed strategy by american think tank to occupy the oil and othre resources of muslims.
    think for a while! is it possible! if a building of about 100 stories is hit on its head and it collapes from the bottom all of sudden.

    The U.S has no need to worry about the the nuclear weapons of pakistan, bcaz being a antion we are not mad like U.s nationlist who had already shown theier intention when droped Atom Bomb on Nagasagi And Heroshima.

  83. August 19, 2008 at 06:23

    If Musharraf repent and apologises for what he did wrong for his nation let them leaves all that matter in power of HOLY CREATOR but pakistan people have look for peace in their nation. The world is in danger under washington political destabilization around the globe. If the washington is weaken politically and militarily then there will be peace in most part of world if not, people must know that perhap many people will lose their lives from washington political propaganda and instability. Some of young leaders may take these political propaganda seriously and use the weapon of most destrucation against another nations result to billions of life lost.

  84. 84 Des Currie
    August 19, 2008 at 06:56

    Goodness gracious but it is so much fun. Maybe like playing chess with pieces shaped like cups, filled with nitro-glycerine. The departure of Musharraf will remove a strong central position. I doubt whether there is anyone in Pakistan who could hold that position with as much resolve as he did. So, the expectation has to be a slide to one or the other side with a new president in charge. Either way, it will make Pakistan into a more internationally divisive nation, and this is not good for international alignment. Not being well steeped in democracy, events will move change sooner, rather than later.
    Des Currie

  85. 85 tediouse
    August 19, 2008 at 07:56

    ok an unstable country nuclear bombs,a history asassination an economy that has been robbed blind every year ,millions staving, and any gov official that can be bought for price of a secondhand kia ,not to mention on a promise of getting ,
    3 virgins you can live forever,there are no shortage of volunteers to strap on a ,
    2lbs semtex belt and kill as many people as they can including their own,

    i dont know you tell me.


  86. 86 Ahmed
    August 19, 2008 at 08:58

    Afghan war has been a big business for Punjabi army and for Punjabi Political leaders for about thirty years. This business will conitinue as long as Pakistan exists on world map.

    Tax payers money of the western world people will lavishly be enjoyed by Punjabi Army Generals and Punjabi Politicians. This big business will not end unless Pakistan of Punjabis’ ends its existance on the world map.

  87. August 19, 2008 at 11:30

    Forget Musharraf! The US gov’t protected him as an ally. As per usual with all its puppets, the US picked wrongly. Musharraf was feathering his own nest and no one else’s. In any case, if your concern the world safety, what does Musharraf have to do with it? He’s a puppet! Big in his own eyes. Yea, so he held power in Pakistan. So what? Under Uncle Sam’s eyes he could hardly go against US interests. But those of the people of Pakistan, has Musharraf ever truly cared about his own people? Only a fool things so.

    But, again, if the concern is world safety, then GET RID OF BUSH AND CHENEY AND THEIR COMPANY OF PUPPETS. They are Enemy No. 1. In their absence, we have no enemies. In their presence, who needs enemies?

    Get real, BBC, and start telling it like it is. High time you stop coping out. The world today has only one Enemy: The Bush Co. of Puppets, and the Corporate Puppeteers who pull the puppets’ strings.

  88. 88 Roberto
    August 19, 2008 at 12:51

    The US armed them, so they should disarm them as well.

    ——— US has provided military assistance, but any claim that they armed Pakistan with nukes is complete nonsense.

    Pakistan developed it’s program thanks to an unholy alliance with China and North Korea as well as trading on the thriving black market.

    Musharraf has punted and ball squarely in the courts of Pakistan’s notoriously corrupt politicians that the usual suspects have been slobbering over. Smart move for Musharraf. Global conditions are deteriorating, so let the pols get themselves into more hot water and then the military rides in to the rescue for the umpteenth time.

    Pakistani democracy 101 unless India gets involved after the umpteenth attack on them by Pakistani Islamic terrorists.

  89. 89 Dennis
    August 19, 2008 at 14:19

    i think that world will be a tad bit more dangerous without musharraf!

    but, musharraf–was going to be in the process of being impeach from the pakistani parliament…


  90. August 19, 2008 at 14:52

    Good he is gone.He is suppossed to send a ship load of arms every month to the government of Srilanka, according to press reports, to kill the Tamils who ar fighting for self rule.I won’t be surprised if his successor too continues the dirty work. May be little respite.

  91. 91 Suresh
    August 19, 2008 at 17:38

    The US may not have provided the PAkistanis with nukes, but with something even more important – the leeway to acquire this. Year after year, American presidents have certifed that Pakistan had no nuclear weapons so that the Hyde /Pressler sanctions would not affect them. This was done in FULL knowledge of the profileration that happened under their noses.

  92. 92 Roberto
    August 19, 2008 at 20:32

    The US may not have provided the PAkistanis with nukes, but with something even more important – the leeway to acquire this.

    —— Sorta like I’m giving you leeway to reconstruct your claim that the US provided Pakistan with nukes?

    Good that you reconsidered your position. If everyone in the world goes around making false claims, no progress or understanding will ever be made and we might as well be baboons.

    Now, the US taking heavy flack for trying to prevent Iran from having nukes. Is the US now the KEEPER of preventing all bad things you don’t desire from happening?

    I can agree the US foreign policy post cold war has been utterly atrocious and completely self serving, finally to the point of global collapse, but perhaps that has been because of incompetence brought about by greed. Afterall, they had the trend and recent clues prior to 9/11, yet did nothing. Have you ever worked in a bureaucracy and seen the incompetency first hand?

    It would greatly assist the US and the world if Pakistan could start running the country properly for once. The US is overextended and will be in a pullback phase the next few years. It simply cannot wave a majic wand and prevent Pakistan or any country from behaving badly if they want it bad enough.

  93. 93 Syed Hasan Turab
    August 19, 2008 at 20:39

    Pakistan is a recognised power in the world with an recognised background of changing the world histry & Geography similtinously, Pakistan dont need USA infact USA need Pakistan.
    Indirect recognisation & offer of plain water Atomic reactor to india caused sever damage to Mr. Musharaf reputation as he went too far to impose the US mandate in regard to war against terror. Being a front line fighter of US war against Terror Musharaf Govt impose terror war over Pakistan.
    His resignation will restrict to US expectation’s, demanding attitute & ungreatfullness with Pakistan. Pakistan is an immigrants nation with a trillian of public support in International lobby from China to Muslim world including USA, with an ability to meet the peace or war challanges of any kind, as majority of the population is between the age of 17 to 45 years of age.
    Most probably Mr. A.Q.Khan will be the next President of Pakistan as this person was a favourate to founder father of Governing Pakistan Peoples Party.
    No doubt corrupt India will try to take the advantage of his wrong publisity even knowing the facts that Indian Atomic Scientist’s worked in IRAN to establish the Atomic reserch atmosphier in IRAN.

  94. 94 Papoose
    August 20, 2008 at 04:19

    A strong character like Musharraf would have taken Pakistan to greater heights, inclluding laying the foundations of Peace in the region with neighbors- all this if he had enough of time in his hands. But with Mush gone, there’s a vacuum and Nature abhors that state-it’s dangerous, I feel.
    Frankly, I don’t quite believe in ‘touchy-feely’ dealings with terrorists and hot-heads. I think things will get worse. You’ll now see more squabbles, politics and self-serving wishy-washies ruining the nation. And the people look on in amazement and disgust. And what next? the resurgence of the same troubles that Mush had tried to eradicate.

  95. 95 Suresh
    August 20, 2008 at 06:26


    “Good that you reconsidered your position. If everyone in the world goes around making false claims, no progress or understanding will ever be made and we might as well be baboons.”

    Roberto, I merely restated/paraphrased my earlier comment, my position remains identical. A trifle early for you to be tomtomming victory.

    “Is the US now the KEEPER of preventing all bad things you don’t desire from happening?”

    But manipulating the UN, the NSG and the NPT nations to allow their “most allied ally” to gain nuclear weapons to threaten peaceful democracies is, if not duplicitous and evil, what?

    ” It simply cannot wave a majic wand and prevent Pakistan or any country from behaving badly if they want it bad enough.”

    Well how about the US stop supplying them F-16s to “fight terrorists”. No terrorist I know flies around in F-16s or MiGs. Might I bring to notice the presence of Stinger missiles of American manufacture supplied by the CIA that have resulted in 2 downed Indian MiGs during the Kargil war?

  96. August 20, 2008 at 10:15

    With Musharraf finally gone i think the world can be alot more safer. i dont think what Papoose has said is correct at all… Musharaff is not the kind of guy who wants peace really beacuse if he did the taliban would not be sitting there and what about the terrorist camps in pakistan…!!!

    The reson the Kargil war took place in the 1999 was because the Pakistan military took the Indian checkpost after the winter. That doesnt sound very peaceful and friendly to me..all Musharaff wanted was LAND…

    Musharaff is just working for Bush,who’s just another guy trying to ruin the world and becoming rich and powerful.

    I think Zardari and Nawas sharif are going to govern pakistan into a better tommorow but pakistan for sure is going to go through a turmoil since all the mess Musharaf has left behind will have to be cleaned up……finallyy !

  97. 97 Roberto
    August 20, 2008 at 12:30

    Well how about the US stop supplying them F-16s to “fight terrorists”. No terrorist I know flies around in F-16s or MiGs.

    ———- I do notice far too many opinions don’t include knowledge of military tactics and strategy.

    As a former British Commonwealth, the US has traditionally had decent relations with Pakistan which can obtain aircraft from anywhere. Whatever military aid the US gives Pakistan gives US diplomats more leverage when negotiating agreements. That’s how things work.

    Air support has been heavily used and critical in US battles against terrorist insurgents, but apparently 7 yrs of widely publicized events seems to have passed you by.

    It’s incorrect to suggest the US provided Pakistan with nukes when the record shows Pakistani covert dealings with a host of states and black market dealings. I could agree the past 16 yrs of US foreign policy has been incompetant, a more accurate reality.

    At any rate, genie out of the bottle and I don’t care how many angels dance on a pin. I’m only interested in a stable and democratic nuclear Pakistan, something seemingly impossible to achieve under current conditions no matter which party is supported.

  98. August 21, 2008 at 19:10

    Come to think of it, those impeaching the general are doing so for what they claim he ‘s done, what about what he has not done, will they act and behave better when they get the power? only time will tell but then for now after Musharaff there is ticking time bomb

  99. August 23, 2008 at 12:39

    Mushraf”s blind support to America on their war on terror created problems for Pakistan. I always advocate a policy to talk to the so called ‘terrorists’ and find out the reason for their behaviour,rather than talking to them with guns and arrogance.America’s one track activities made the whole world vulnerable to “terrosim’ and the first victim is UK.
    Unfortunately, any protests against the discriminatory policies of a government by ethnic minorities is Termed as Terrorism. Invariably USA supports it by providing arms and ammunition to the government, though not directly, but, through its friendly countries.e.g.Pakistan to Srilanka to subjugate the tamils.
    Dictators of the Asian countries have failed to realise That America,on whose support they rely on, will let them down like Hot Potatoes when the people rise up against the dictators.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: