The son of Benazir Bhutto (who was assasinated in December 2007) and President Asif Ali Zardari is finishing up his studies at Oxford University in England and has been active recently in building political bridges in Pakistan. Bilawal Bhutto is the Chairman of the Pakistan People’s Party. The party of his mother and of his father. Bilawal Bhutto is next in line to become President of Pakistan.
President Asif Ali Zardari’s approval rating is now in the ‘teens’. Today, President Zardari gave up the keys to the Nuclear Arsenal to Prime Minister Gilani in an effort to relinquish some of the powers of the Presidency and some say it was done to allow President Zardari to serve out his term (he can not be prosecuted while in office). Read more here.
The expiration of the National Reconcilation Ordinance (NRO) goes into effect today. Over 8,000 cases of prosecution of corruption, murder and other crimes were stopped due to this declaration by then President Musharraf’s order in 2007. This allowed Benazir Bhutto and her husband, Asif Ali Zardari (known as Mr. 10% for taking bribes from goverment contracts in the past) and others to return to Pakistan and not face any charges. This was brokered by the U.S. with Musharraf so Bhutto could run for the Presidency. Charges were pending against Bhutto and her husband Asif Ali Zardari and were suspended until today as the Supreme Court said in July that the NRO would expire if action were not taken in Parliament. Read more here.
The ecomomy is in shambles in Pakistan. By the Pakistan Military taking on the “Taliban” in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas and the North-West Frontier, many Pakistani’s see this as fighting their own people. Almost all citizens of Pakistan that live in the Swat Valley area and the South Waziristan areas have been forced to leave their homes and live with relatives, strangers, or housed in “refugee” camps due to the military action. Over 3,000,000 people have been “displaced” over the past six months. Many have not returned to their villages. Many will find that their infrastructure, their homes, and their crops are destroyed. Corruption is rampant. President Zardari has charges against him that now become actionable again with the NRO expiring today.
This is the new partner for the United States to defeat the “Taliban”, or is it to defeat the al-Quaeda? Must be the al-Quaeda, as now there’s talk from the UK that the “Taliban” must be part of the Kabul government. This would not be said without U.S. approval. Patchwork government so the U.S. can get out of Afghanistan? Another great U.S. blunder, forcing the Pakistan government to get the military to attack their own lands and fight their own people. Nothing has been gained, and much has been lost. Now Pakistan, with its Nuclear Weapons, has become very unstable. What’s next?
Malalai Joya’s story will be on our Blog every day for the next month. Please buy her book and visit her site.. Read her San Jose Mercury Opinion: “U.S. is doing no good in Afghanistan” here.
On Saturday, Nov. 7, Malalai Joya was at a gathering at San Jose State University in California to promote her book “A Woman Among Warlords” and to gather support for her people in Afghanistan. Malalai is a very brave woman to take on her own government and also the U.S. government, the occupiers of her country.
Our story on Malalai Joya can be seen here. Buy a copy of her book, “A Woman Among Warlords” here, or at your favorite bookstore. A great Holiday gift idea. The subtitle is “The Extraordinary Story of an Afghan Who Dared to Raise Her Voice”. Visit Malalai’s website here for more information on how you can help.
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Take Action Now: It is not too late !
Call President Obama: To reach the U.S. Capitol Switchboard: 202-224-3121 or 202-225-3121 Leave a message: No more Troops. End the War(s). Call Leon Panetta at (703) 482-0623, CIA headquarters, leave a message: Stop the South Waziristan War and don’t attack Quetta, End the War(s).
How much does the War Spending cost your congressional district (if you live in the U.S.)? Find out at the National Priorities Project (click here). Only YOU can stop this.
Today, please tell your member of Congress and U.S. Senators to End the War in Afghanistan, sign this petition. If you live outside the United States, write to your leaders, End the War Now.
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