by Sana Ali
To all those calling for a revolution in Pakistan, I have just one thing to say: open your eyes!
The Taliban have unleashed a wave of violence over the last several years; they have succeeded to such an extent that a country that had never experienced a suicide bombing now witnesses them in routine. A revolution is already happening, and it is being fought by the Taliban. These inhumane monsters wish to topple the federal and provincial government and install one of their own – one that follows a twisted and cruel interpretation of Islam. In their Pakistan, there can be no Shia, no Ahmadi, no Hindi, Christian or Jew, and certainly no educated women. In their dark world, there is no vibrancy, only fear. Such are the sinister goals of the Taliban.
While the government and army vigorously fight extremism, they must now too provide relief to millions in need due to the devastating floods. The challenges are clear and the Pakistani spirit to fight and triumph has revealed itself throughout Pakistan and the world. The people of Pakistan have come out in full force to help the flood victims, and the expatriate community has risen to their duty as well. It is truly wonderful to witness the dedication Pakistanis have exhibited in the face of terrible circumstances.
That is why it angers me to hear political leaders calling for a revolution. All revolutions have initially been attempts at reform, and reform is well underway in Pakistan. Our political process will never again tolerate a military dictator and our people will never again live under martial law. We are now a country that has accepted political power can only change hands through a ballot box, not by force. The democratic institutions within Pakistan have carefully won credibility – the “Friends of Democratic Pakistan” is an example of the international community’s faith in the government, and hope that democracy can be sustained.
We have to do just that – SUSTAIN DEMOCRACY, not scrap it. Those who call for a French Revolution in Pakistan should ask themselves who their Napoleon will be. Who will be the person to spill even more blood in Pakistan? Is our soil not red enough for these people?
It is infuriating to see credible leaders call for a revolution. It must be a very quaint hypothetical to think about in the safety of one’s drawing room. “After all, it worked out so well for France!” they must exclaim. The fact of the matter is we are trying to uphold our system of governance in the face of the Taliban, who are waging a war against Pakistan. An extremist’s fondest wish is to see a destabilized Pakistan. Why would we give them that?