Monday, December 12, 2005

On Pakistan-US mutual affection

American presidents have a thing for Pakistani dictators. Kennedy hailed Ayub’s decision to not make trouble during the China war as ‘a courageous act’. Less than a decade later, Nixon called for a ‘tilt with Pakistan’ because it wasn’t possible to let a friend of China be ‘screwed’ by a friend of Russia. Zia was of course dubbed ‘the defender of the free world’ during the war against the Evil Empire, and Musharraf is now ‘defending liberty’ against the Evil.

Whether you commit genocide, hang the civilian prime minister or start a war with the neighbouring country, the president of the United States will understand because defending the truth, justice and the American way of life comes naturally to a Pakistani dictator.

But do the Pakistanis have a thing for the American president? It turns out that they do. Or if they didn’t, they will now. After a generation of school kids memorise this poem, how can they not love the leader of the free world?

Well, that was the plan anyhow. That is why the poem became a part of the Year 11 English curriculum. But those annoying freedom-hating anti-American media people raised too much noise, and the poem had to be dropped from the syllabus. A small setback, but we’re sure the Pakistani leader’s affection for Mr Bush will find other avenues of expression.