Red Mosque, a Milestone in Pakistan's Crisis
General Parveze Musharraf, Pakistan's
president, is known for his talent to compromise with different
sides at the same time. After coup-de ta
against Navaz Sharif in 1999 and seizing
the power in Pakistan,
he satisfied Iranian regime by turning his face on Abdol
Ghadir khan, father of Pakistan
nuclear project, who passed the sensitive technology to Mullahs.
This event was three years before September 11 and did not raise
flag in the U.S.
Also, Musharraf was one
of the major supporters of Taliban in Afghanistan.
After September 11 and collapse of central power in Afghanistan,
he continued his support for Taliban, of course less obvious and
only in Afghanistan.
It was an agreement that did immune his regime inside Pakistan
to the rising wave of fundamentalism in the Middle East.
Certainly, this mutual agreement between Musharraf
and Taliban, was not a pleasant gesture
to the newly elected president in Afghanistan
from a head of state in neighboring country who claimed to be a
ally in fight with Al-Qaeda. For this,
Karzei could not hide his dissatisfaction for Musharraf's act in many occasions. But the Red Mosque event,
as a milestone, changed the whole situation for Musharraf
and his regime. Red Mosque clash most likely will affect Pakistan's
political future and ends Musharraf's
Musharraf tired hard
to avoid any harsh clash with Islamic fundamentalists in Red Mosque,
but the outcome was inevitable because religious fanatics already
were decided to play an influential role and not to be a part of
Taliban's deal. Taliban facing a done deal incident now had to choose
and take a side. Being angry with recent Musharraf's policies, Taliban chose fundamentalists. For the
first time Pakistan
was witnessed series of suicide bombing, and most importantly not
in a factional-tribal conflict but against central power. A message
also, sent to Musharraf through the shooting on his airplane around the
airport which reported immediately by media and denied by government
later. Taliban broke the tie with Musharraf
and ended years of cease fire with Pakistan's
The implication of Red Mosque event can be viewed
in many ways. In short term, the central focus of Taliban's fight
plan might shift toward south from Afghanistan,
which eases pressures on allies temporarily. However, in long term
it'll bring more obstacles to U.N backed forces in Afghanistan.
has several nuclear bombs, even the imagination of a fundamentalist
regime in Pakistan
would be a nightmare for west.
Over all, despite of emergence of a rival Islamic
will benefit out of any possible regime change in Pakistan
at the moment. Firs of all, Iran
will be looked more moderate than those in Pakistan
who will practice Taliban's model. This can help Iranian regime
to play as a mediator. Secondly, Iran
can complete its nuclear projects with receiving more help form
a possible fundamentalist regime in Pakistan.
Also, in such a situation, Iran
will ask for more leniencies in dead-end negotiation with west on
its uranium enrichment standoff.
The question that how Pakistan's
president will deal with the aftermath of Red Mosque incident depends
on how organized and powerful Islamist can mobilize their forces
in next couple of month. Also, it will rely on the fact that if
Musharraf can utilize his talent and bring
those fundamentalist leader and Taliban back on the negotiation