The 21st Century Phenomenon
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IMPOSING DEMOCRACY

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It took hundreds of years of slow, gradual development to West Europe and other Western Democracies to become true Democracies. The long process was accompanied by two bloody world wars which were a part of the transferring of Europe from Colonial Monarchic political system to a true Democracy. In a period of 31 years, from 08/1914 up to 05/1945, 100 million people were slaughtered on European soil by other Europeans. Not only in the World Wars but in a long series of civil wars (Spain 1936-39), revolutions (Russia 1917-18 ) and secondary wars like the Russian-Polish war from 1920. Each such event caused millions of casulties.

In order for democracy to succeed there are three preconditions:

A. – A large scale secular education system with a growing number of population which know to write and read.

B. – A large and growing social middle class.

C. – A strong and free press.

 

It is a great arrogance, after the long evolution that some of the European countries went through to become democracies, to impose democracies from Washington or Brussels, on other nations which are lacking the basic condition of democracy and it always ended with a humanitarian disaster. So was the case when European powers left Africa 50 years ago imposing on the newly born nations the democratic system.  So was the case when USA president Jimmy Carter tried to impose democracy on Iran in 1978 or in Afghanistan, Iraq or the Palestinian Authority in the last years.

Pakistan is not a democratic society. Not only because of President Pervez Musharraf but because of the large scale strict Islamic religious education system, because of the relatively small social middle class, the weakness of the local press limited, on one hand, by President Pervez Musharraf’s regime but, on the other hand, constantly intimidated by radical Islamists and because of the tribal structure of the society where the tribe comes always first.  Pakistan is going through a CIVIL WAR in which the loyalty of the common soldiers, most of them devoted Muslims, is doubtful.

President Pervez Musharraf addressed the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI), a British think-tank, on 01/25/2008, on the opening day of a three days visit to UK. He called for support and encouragement not “criticisms and insinuations”. “We are in the forefront fighting terrorism and extremism, our success is critical. We have to win because if we lose I think it will have an impact on the region and the world, maybe in the streets of Europe” – President Pervez Musharraf added.

Pakistan is not Europe or USA and can move, successfully, to democracy only in very slow steps. An attempt to impose an European style democracy on Pakistan will end the same as the attempt of 1978 to impose democracy on Iran.

Not like in other countries, a political crisis in Pakistan has a very dangerous meaning to the rest of the world. In no time the Pakistani nuclear bomb can be turned to be an Islamic nuclear bomb in the hands of a most extreme Islamic regime.

 

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