Military rule has been voted down, and Musharraf sounds willing to concede defeat, and for his party to become the opposition.
A key factor in the relatively smooth election was the decision of the new chief of the army, Gen. Ashfaq Pervez Kayani, to ensure that the military stayed out of the campaign and did not interfere on election day, analysts said.One of the implicit arguments of the Bush administration has been that - his love of freedom fries not withstanding - military rule in Pakistan might not be such a bad thing because we need tight reins in such proximity to nuclear weapons. Hopefully a new coalition government there will bring more stability and not less. With things like that and news that Castro has resigned, it makes you wonder what the world will look like in 10 years or so. And which Bush will be President then?
General Kayani, in turn, appeared to be a promising partner for the United States, according to the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Joseph P. Biden, Jr., who also met with Mr. Musharraf on Tuesday.
Mr. Biden, who has criticized what he called the “Musharraf-centric” policy of the Bush administration, said that the new head of the army was a “rational man who understands the obligations and limitations of the military.”
For some insight and good questions, read Steve Clemons today.