Tuesday, September 26, 2006

The Pakistani President And The Bungling Booktour

Sounds like a cute little children's story, doesn't it? With maybe the man with the yellow hat and Curious George stopping by to get a store-bought copy signed?

Well kids, I wish it was. Instead, it appears that President Pervez Musharraf of Pakistan (suffering suckatash!) has gone ahead and written his memoirs, a not-so-cute book that:

"...is expected to counter the biography of former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in which the deposed leader, who was unseated by Musharraf, charged him with plotting the Kargil conflict without obtaining permission from the government.

Besides providing an insight into his childhood and his rise in Pakistani army and later as military ruler, Musharraf IS expected to respond to Sharif's charges in detail and provide his version of Kargil conflict as well as his role when Sharif along with former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee signed the Lahore accord."

Indeed, while innocent women are raped and killed in his country for the crime of not marrying their appointed husbands, or for other reasons that 'require' honor killings, President Musharraf is traipsing around on book tour, visiting shows like "The Daily Show With John Stewart".

And thats not all, folks. Have you noticed a larger news presence of the Pakistani President lately, and more articles about him? More comments, such as when an emissary of Bush supposedly told him that if Musharraf didn't support his "War On Terror", that he would be "bombed to the stone age."

Gen V N Malik has described Pervez Musharraf as a ‘timid general’. In his view, there is a ‘lot of fabrication’ about the Kargil conflict in Pakistan President’s autobiography, which the Karachi daily The Dawn, says, ‘could well go down in the Guinness Book of Records for many firsts’ like promotion of the book at the expense of Pak exchequer. The daily dubs as a publicity gimmick Musharraf’s ‘bombed to the stone age’ comment. It notes that Gen Musharraf was soft on Benazir Bhutto while being very harsh on Nawaz Sharif in the book.

So, I'm not sure what President Musharraf's end goal is, but I really think it is shameless for a seated leader to tout their memoirs. Because, in the case that they are still politically active (unlike former Governor James McGreevey), their book is politically charged and probably serves a purpose other than generating book sales. President Clinton's memoirs certainly told his side of the story, and was meant to bolster the Democratic Party, but it wasn't meant to effect the current political situation. Which I am inclined to believe Musharraf's book is.

Let's see what else comes out of Curious Musharraf's trap in the near future...

(I'm not sure if you also find it amusing to refer to Musharraf in the vein of Curious George, which is a common theme in making light of our current President's common Gaffe's, i.e., Curious George and Missing WMDs."


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