How its blind trust on China is sending Pakistan hurtling down the Zimbabwe way

By Kanwal Sibal Political developments within Pakistan and the deepening China-Pakistan nexus are blighting the prospects of stability that our region sorely needs. China’s own highly authoritarian political system that its leadership believes is superior to western democracy, its suppression of dissent and repression of minorities countenance the worst political trends visible in Pakistan’s polity. If the US’ preferential policies towards the military over decades resulted in the stunting of the democratic institutions in Pakistan, China’s relationship with Pakistan, anchored deeply in the country’s military establishment, is having the same consequence today. The all-weather China-Pakistan relationship can never be good for Pakistan’s democracy because China has no stakes in it, ideological or otherwise. China is planning to invest billions of dollars in Pakistan, and as we have seen in the case of Zimbabwe where, to protect its heavy investment, it intervened to effect a regime change of sorts by backing the army chief ’s move to overthrow Mugabe, it will always seek to control Pakistan’s politics through the military so that its humongous investment is insured against adverse political change. If the US had earlier encouraged jihadi elements in Pakistan to serve the geopolitical objective of combating the Soviets in...

13 Published By - The Economic Times - 2017.12.07. 10:42
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