The civilized world is in an uproar over Pakistani strongman Pervez Musharraf’s on again off again declaration of quasi martial law and house arrest of Benazir Bhutto, but not really.
Most world leaders, ours included hopefully, know that the only thing that really matters with regard to Pakistani politics is the security of their nukes. So while they come out and make grand Machiavellian proclamations about the need for democracy to be restored, the back channel message is, “yeah, we’re all for democracy as long as it doesn’t allow your nukes to fall into the wrong hands.”
Yes, yes political freedom and free and fair elections immediately, as long is it doesn’t allow your nukes to fall into the wrong hands. Are we hypocritical to back a bit of a tyrannical despot rather than the people’s favorite? Yes, but we can’t let your nukes fall into the wrong hands.
I’m good with all of that. It’s sort of a world view of the political mantra, “It’s the economy stupid.” It’s the nukes stupid. As such, it’s preferable to have a pro western dictator capable of safe guarding the nukes in charge than some democratically elected corrupt liberal goofball who can’t.
So when I see all of the public lambasting of Musharraf, I picture the speaker’s fingers crossed behind his back and a though bubble coming out of his head, “Just take care of the nukes.”