What really happened? No one knows, really, except perhaps for a select few at the top of the military echelon, and almost none of them are saying anything substantial, even off the record; certainly none has anything to say publicly, apart from making some disgruntled noises about ‘sovereignty’. Today, those who make up Pakistan’s military and intelligence establishment find themselves at a critical, fascinating point. With Osama bin Laden having been recovered from their own backyard, they are left with just two options: either concede collusion between members of the military and the intelligence and the very forces that Pakistan is claiming to fight; or claim ‘intelligence failure’. This is not much of a choice, and the military is desperate for something credible to say.
Just nosing around: A recreation of bin Laden's Abbottabad compound in the Internet-based
'virtual world' Second Life
Romila Thapar addresses invitees at the
Southasian relaunch of Himal Southasian,
IIC, New Delhi, January 2013.
Old Faces, New Precedents
On 11 May 2013, Pakistan went to the polls in a general election that will transfer power democratically for the first time in the nation's history. Nawaz Sharif has claimed victory for the Pakistan Muslim League-N.
From our archive:
Mehreen Zahra-Malik discusses novel means of holding corrupt officials to account in 'A coup by other means?' (July 2012)
Shamshad Ahmad on praetorian irony, Machiavelli's prince, and Pakistan's fight for constitutional primacy. (January 2008)
Zia Mian and A H Nayyar write about Pakistan's coup culture and Nawaz Sharif's 'absolutist sense of power.' (November 1999)