Fact 1: Superpowers create super waves. Minor powers – like Pakistan – just get to pick sides. Between 1947 and 1991, there were two super powers – the US and the Soviet Union. The wave launched by the US was the ‘containment of the Soviet Union’ – and Pakistan had become part of the US-launched wave.
Fact 2: On December 26, 1991 the Soviet Union was dissolved (and ever since it has been a uni-polar world).
Fact 3: The US is the only superpower and the wave launched by the US is the ‘containment of China’ (remember, we were part of the US wave when it was a bi-polar world; we picked the US over the Soviet Union).
Fact 4: The Panama leaks is cyber warfare at its best. The Panama leaks is nearly four months old but refuses to leave the Pakistani political minefield. The Panama leaks came with precision-guided missiles. As a matter of record, one of those missiles specifically targeted the immediate family of PM Nawaz Sharif (but no such missile exploded in the lap of the one who reigns over the land of five rivers).
Fact 5: PM Nawaz Sharif has three options – status quo, early elections or an in-house change.
Fact 6: Imran Khan has three options – the Supreme Court, the Election Commission of Pakistan and/or the streets.
Rumour 1: For PM Nawaz Sharif, the status-quo option is growing paler by the hour. Calling early elections would mean an interim government and that is where things could go terribly wrong. What is PM Nawaz Sharif then left with?
Rumour 2: The new viceroy, who runs his territory in the name of ‘The Company’ at the Colonial Farm Road has recently been hyperactive – mediating and supporting his own horse.
Rumour 3: The PM’s horse in the race is the one who controls the Q-Block – the billfold, the pouch and the moneybag.
Rumour 4: The PM’s other horse in the race is the one who claims that he controls the A Block – H2O plus AC/DC.
Rumour 5: The one who doesn’t have a missile in his lap is being resisted (but for how long?).
Rumour 6: A dark horse is a “racehorse about whom little is known or who unexpectedly wins”. The term actually began “as horse racing parlance for a race horse that is unknown to gamblers and thus difficult on which to place betting odds”. There’s a dark horse sitting in the P Block who spends his days planning and nights dreaming about dram projects (apparently, “the first known mention of ‘dark horse’ is in Benjamin Disraeli’s novel ‘The Young Duke’ in 1831).
To be certain, “a rumour without a leg to stand on will get around some other way” and “a groundless rumour often covers a lot of ground.”
The writer is a columnist based in Islamabad.
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Twitter: @saleemfarrukh