Benazir’s ‘brush with martyrdom’ will bolster her appeal: WSJ

November 14th, 2007 - 2:42 am ICT by admin  
However, the article by author Colum Murphy termed Benazir’s alliance with President General Pervez Musharraf as a “risky strategy.”

According to Murphy, the international support for Benazir may help her bid to appear statesmanlike, but she and her party must tread carefully if they do not want to sour this goodwill, as some people in Pakistan have already accused her of recklessness, the Daily Times reported.

He wrote that Pakistan’s political scene remains largely stuck in the past, adding that Musharraf allied with Benazir only because his “political gaffes” made his position untenable, and not because he is an inherent democrat.

Pointing out that the former Prime Minister may be tempted to strike out on her own in the wake of the Karachi bombings, Murphy warned that if she does, she would risk more than just her own political prospects.

She would be risking Pakistan’s best chance for democracy in a generation, he added.

“Ms Bhutto may believe she has the political upper hand because it’s not in Mr Musharraf’s interest to encourage a dispute. A weakened Bhutto-Musharraf alliance could embolden exiled former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, who, unlike Ms Bhutto, was quickly shipped back to Saudi Arabia when he tried to return to Pakistan last month. He may now return next month, likely to his home province of Punjab,” he wrote.

Murphy, who is deputy editor of the Far Eastern Economic Review, further said that should Sharif return, it’s anyone’s guess what might happen to the political process in the coming months, adding that if a January election were held with all three major political parties represented, the outcome may not be wholly democratic. (ANI)

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