'Keen to Embrace Martyrdom'
Says Pakistan Army Chief
The timing and circumstances and drama are such that it's hard to believe the Americans don't have their hands in this one as well. Maleeha Lodhi is probably Washington's choice for the job; making it all the more likely a Benazir comeback is being planned as an option as well.
MER's Publisher, Mark Bruzonsky, sat next to Ambassador Lodhi at an Embassy Dinner in early June. Having met her many years ago when she was a journalist Bruzonsky found Ms. Lodhi very competent but excessively deferential to the powers that be in the American capital -- precisely the qualities desired by official Washington of course.
The situation in the sub-continuent will remain tense and potentially explosive for some time. Even as the Pakistani President and Washington Ambassador were working overtime to cool the rhetoric, the missile tests and the rhetoric from the Army speak a different language. It was on 26 May in fact that the Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman, General Aziz Ahmed Khan, cried out in martyr language: "The concentration of troops on borders and coercive attitude of any power could not frighten the valiant armed forces of Pakistan, whose soldiers were more keen to embrace martyrdom than saving their lives," (AFP)
Meanwhile, on Sunday, Indian forces arrested one of the senior Kashmiri political leaders in another provocation designed to show Pakistan who's boss and force Pakistan to capitulate.