The Alternative to Imran Khan

I hear the argument again and again that Pakistan has no alternative but Imran Khan, he is our last resort. Even so called intellectuals can be found repeating the sentiment. They say, when the intellectuals of a nation abandon principals nothing but chaos and anarchy becomes its fate. There are alternatives if one is looking to avoid civil war and total disintegration of every system that is in place, there are alternatives. There always are.


Instead of rhetoric lets just consider a few facts. Fact is that the current Government along with the previous ones have failed to alleviate the problems of the general public. If you listen to Imran Khan's speech repeated every night for more than a month, the picture he paints of the Pakistani condition is almost accurate.


Every successful political movement in history started when the masses arose, it is also true that almost every popular revolution was then hijacked by fascists, dictators and were moved away from their true purpose and the people although initially enjoyed a few benefits, in the end were worse off than they started. The same is the fear here, you cannot pin your hopes on politicians, politicians are inherently bound by alliances and funding. Those who fund the politicians have vested interests and even if the politician may himself not share their interests, he is still bound.


The very foundation of a thriving civil society rests on the shoulders of upholding the law. The issue here is not the resignation of Nawaz Sharif, the issue is, can an external pressure uproot the main pillars of a state via unconstitutional hooliganism. In whatever way the current Govt came into being, it is the sitting Govt at the moment the Army and the other institutions of Pakistan recognise its authority and legitimacy. Can the precedent be set that to take a shot at power, gather a mob and disrupt the doings of the state long enough to gain a victory.


The fears of Pakistan becoming a fascist state are real, they stem from the overwhelming support from the masses that Imran Khan has been able to show. There is a potential of handing over unprecedented limitless power to an individual whilst breaking the system and the law, where would this stop? How would justice be ensured when those who come in the name of change, with slogans of Justice for all, themselves do so by breaking the law negating their own stated principals. At what stage the lines would be drawn?

Imran khan has repeatedly shown his sway towards the radical clergy, whenever there is an issue, there is a statement reinforcing and giving reassurances to the Mullah clarifying where he stands, which is right behind them. His statements about Afia although popular, show the bigoted mindset he hails from. When these apparent inconsistencies are shown to the followers, the reply is that he said that to pacify the mullah to keep them quiet in other words his word is only as good as any other politician, showing his desperation as well.


The other reason, the people Imran Khan has surrounded himself with, the remnants, the gathering of those forces which failed and were rejected. These people who surround Imran Khan themselves represent the very mindset and corrupt political system that Imran Khan claims to raise his voice against. So unless there is dictatorship, the current status quo will remain even if PTI comes into power.


Lets examine what life in a fascist dictator's rule is like. Fascist governments control the way people live. Those who criticise the government or do not obey are punished. They must leave the country, go to prison or are often executed.

Reasons for the Appeal of Fascism, though people may not call it that, mostly it is referred to as "revolution" or "independence" in reality its an invitation to the exact opposite.

Fascism appeals to all groups irrespective of status
The emphasis upon law and order is appealing (it is seen as an alternative to social unrest)
People turn to other forms of Gov. due to immense economic problems.
Weak governments are easy preys for the fascists
Fascism give its members a sense of identity
Fascism make great use of the potentials of the newly developed mass media
Traditional parties lack inspiration and the fascists represent a dynamic alternative
Are not opposed by the Gov. which they want to bring down

As one can see the correlation of previous historic events and whats happening in Pakistan is apparent and the fears of what this may lead to also very real.

So what is the alternative?

As things stand now, Imran Khan needs to capitalise on the gains he has made but halt all his efforts to disrupt the system, use all what he has achieved to ensure free and fair elections in Pakistan but let the sitting government finish its term, the massive popular support that he has been able to show will only increase if the current sitting government does not change its ways and will result in a sweeping success for PTI.


PTI had made great gains on the negotiation table, the Govt was on the back foot, demands of a free & fair elections and its mechanisms could have been achieved but that chance has been squandered by Imran Khan's insistence on a resignation.


If a change of the system is the real reason of all the protests then continued pressure on the Govt is enough to achieve that. This ensures a continuation & evolution of the political system of Pakistan. There are no short-cuts in the evolution of a political system, it is a gradual process with more setbacks then gains, the history of every other mature democracy is a testament to this fact.

Imran Khan has a real opportunity to educate the Pakistani populous of the power of democracy and the value of an individual's vote, that alone can change the system, we must stop breaking the system, making it restart every time & not letting it mature on its own.


On the other hand if the reasons and intentions of Imran Khan and PTI are a deception in the name of change and their motivations are solely based on a change in regime then a regime change can occur but will not bring in any real change in the status quo.



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