Monday, March 16, 2009


At last we see the Pakistan government allow the reinstatement of Pakistani supreme court chief justice Iftikhar Chaudhry. Former president and military dictator Pervez Musharraf booted Chaudhry out of office for refusing to rule in the general's favor. Talk about the rule of law! And I thought the era of absolute monarchs had disappeared in the 18th century. Musharraf's actions amounting to "get rid of the judge who won't rule in my favor" evokes memories of Henry II's famous line about Thomas Becket in 1170, "who will rid me of this troublesome priest?"

The new Pakistan leader and president, Asif Ali Zardari, whose deceased spouse was the assassinated Benazir Bhutto, continued in opposing Chaudhry's reinstatement. Why? Because he was worried that Chaudhry would rule against him too. Fortunately, because of the street protests and marches led by Pakistan's lawyers, Zardari has now backed down and agreed to Chaudhry coming back.

Note that Zardari has shown himself as bad as Musharraf in trying to quell peaceful protests by the lawyers with canes, clubs and threats of imprisonment.

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