Monday, November 05, 2007

Pakistan General Stages Coup Against Self as President, Thousands of Lawyers Arrested

Think that headline is bizarre? If you think you have an early script for Saturday Night Live, read the news. I don't know what possessed me to do that post on Newsweek's coverage of the political situation in Pakistan the other day. Little did I know that within the space of 24 hours that Martial Law would be declared in the country, and within 48 hours there would be a wholesale round-up of lawyers, hundreds of whom, as of a few hours ago, were in various police stations across the country, under arrest. Judges have been removed from office, and some arrested. At least one Bar Association president has been arrested. While Pakistan's head of state quoted Lincoln in his speech the other night, we are wondering if who he really is reading might be Shakespeare.

Some bloggers have given foreigners in the general region access to their blogs in an attempt to get the Pakistan story out while not violating the law, which prohibits any speech against the government, and the Trib's online edition has the details about the lawyers, if you are interested.

In the meantime, the most sense I can make of the entire situation is that General Musharraf has had a coup against President Musharraf (being the same person but wearing two hats) and imposed martial law. TV stations have gone off the air, and there are reports that broadcasting equipment has been confiscated. Arrests are continuing; hundreds of arrests, thousands of arrests, mostly aimed against the middle class.

I thought you might like to see a picture of a protest held Monday evening at the Karachi Press club (which is 10 hours ahead of CST), uploaded to Flickr. You will note that this picture of protest in Pakistan is far different than the cover of that Newsweek, which is now covering the story of current protests. While the photo above won't sell newspapers, middle class protesters rarely make good press. As you can see here, there are a number of citizens of that country who have better things to do than to be off to Jihad.

Meanwhile, there isn't any news of the arrests of the type of terrorists that trouble the Free World with their deadly views. Could it be possible that if they don't disagree with the General they are safe? We will leave that analysis to the professionals.


Blogger Team America said...

Hey Publia- this is really scary in that great minds are starting to think alike- I hadn't seen this post when I wrote this morning about the lawyer Shakespeare quote after reading the CCN story that went up this morning.

The scarier thing is that a scan of the major news websites tonight have almost nothing on the situation in Pakistan. One wonders if the news cycle has already passed this by.

Nov 6, 2007, 8:23:00 PM  
Blogger Publia said...

Email me at publia.padena -a- gmail-dot-com and I will put you in the loop for news. I am getting plenty, but you have to know where to look. I am not putting the links in here for the moment. Drudge is ok, but is only being fed by the party of Benazir Bhutto. Congrats for picking up on the ABA statement by telepathy!

Nov 7, 2007, 6:22:00 PM  

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