February 26, 2009 (LPAC)--Today, Lyndon LaRouche commented on the escalating destabilization of Pakistan: "The ongoing destabilization of Pakistan, including the breakup of the military is the result of the decision to oust former President Pervez Musharraf. This is exactly the situation that the British and their Saudi allies wanted. People did not listen to my warnings. I am proven right and they were wrong. They don't understand the region. Therefore, I question the wisdom of any future proposals they make on that basis.”
Demonstrations continued throughout Pakistan and Punjab in protest against the Supreme Court decision, issued on February 24, to ban former prime minister and leader of the opposition, Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) Nawaz Sharif, and his brother and chief minister of Punjab, Shahbaz Sharif, from contesting elections and holding office.
The Sharif brothers were banned from contesting elections because of a criminal conviction related to the 1999 military coup by former president Pervez Musharraf, which ended Sharif's second term as prime minister. On Feb. 24, Prime Minister Asif Ali Zardari imposed a two-month governor's rule in Punjab and Governor Salmaan Taseer took over the affairs of the province.
The timing of the Supreme Court could not have been worse. Three of Pakistan's top officials--Army Chief Gen. Ashfaq Kiyani, Foreign Minister Qureshi and Defense Minister Mukhtar are in Washington attending tripartite meetings involving U.S., Afghanistan and Pakistan to help the Obama administration to formulate a new Afghanistan policy. In addition, Pakistan has been informally divided last week when the Pakistani government withdrew its writ from the Malakand Division in northwest, leaving a huge swath of land in the hands of anti-Islamabad, anti-U.S. Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) jihadis.
This Supreme Court ruling will further divide the country. Already, Pakistani Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gillani, a Punjabi, said on Feb.25 "democracy had been weakened by the Supreme Court's decision" to ban former prime minister Nawaz Sharif and his brother, Shabaz, from contesting elections.