Saturday, January 08, 2011

Pakistan: Will U.S. Use Punjab Governor’s Death as Pretext for More Drone Attacks?

By Hannah Gurman, Foreign Policy In Focus, January 5, 2011

Taseer assassination
On Tuesday morning, the reports of Salman Taseer’s assassination topped headlines around the world. Taseer, the governor of Punjab, Pakistan’s largest province, had been killed by one of his own security guards in a market in Islamabad. The assassination comes amidst mounting political chaos in Pakistan, marked by the instability of the government’s ruling coalition and the increasing prominence of Islamist opposition to the country’s secular leaders.

In its initial coverage of these developments, the mainstream press has drawn attention to many issues, including the price of fuel, which was the immediate cause of the defection of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement, or MQM, from Prime Minister Gilani’s ruling coalition, and Taseer’s opposition to a blasphemy law, which imposes a death sentence against those who insult Islam. But one thing the mainstream press has not addressed is the U.S. war in the Af-Pak region. Following the coverage of Taseer’s death, you would not even know that such a war existed.

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