A man of peace, the good guy who was done-in by his malevolent army chief and exiled from his county, Nawaz Sharif, just like John Wayne and Clint Eastwood has proved to be the invincible Sheriff who came in from the cold. Promising that he would rid the countryside of all that was evil, its violence- weary people promptly elected Nawaz to be their Sheriff once again and with his guns blazing, Nawaz lost no time in launching his crusade. Even before he assumed charge, Nawaz, the Sheriff declared his desire to smoke the peace-pipe with his countrys most hated enemy- the Injuns (read, Indians) and even extended an invitation to their chief to attend his coronation.
He also turned his attention to the Americans, who were running their own private show in his county by using birds to bomb the hell of out those they considered to be the bad guys and declared that this must stop immediately, since as a sheriff he wouldnt put up with this ongoing nonsense anymore! Disregarding health advisories against excessive smoking, he also decided to sit down and have another session of peace-pipe smoking with another set of bad guys commonly referred to as the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP). His shrewd deputy, the army chief, did try to caution him to go a bit slow, but the Sheriff was in no mood to listen and with his guns blazing, rode into the treacherous countryside.
As the Sheriff rode on, the tribe in Kashmir cried foul as they felt that in his exuberance to smoke the peace-pipe with the Injuns he was betraying them. However, Nawaz was not moved as he was not an ordinary person who would just restrict himself to performing mundane jobs – he was afterall a Sheriff who had taken upon himself the onerous duty of restoring law and order within his county and peace in the neighbourhood. Just as things appeared to be looking- up, tragedy struck the TTP back stabbed the Sherriff by repaying his benevolent gesture of unconditional talks and releasing their prisoners by blowing up army vehicles and attacking his troopers. Simultaneously, all hell broke loose on the Line of Control (LoC) and his dream of smoking the peace pipe with the Injun chief was rudely shattered by the grim reality of smoking guns.
The Sheriff was upset. He complained that instead of talking with him, one- to- one like a man, the Injun chief, like a rustic woman, was going about complaining to Uncle Sam! However, seeing that things werent going exactly the way he had thought they would, the Sheriff decided to beat the Injuns in their own game by asking Uncle Sam to intervene and resolve the Kashmir issue. That Uncle Sam would not oblige was a foregone conclusion, but atleast this would pacify the Kashmiri tribe and make it clear to his army chief and radical elements at home that even in his new role as the Sheriff, he still remained a nationalist (read hawk) at heart. While the Sheriffs approach towards the TTP remains ambivalent, he has made up for the same by getting a new anti- terror legislation introduced to assuage domestic anger and frustration caused by rampant acts of terrorism.
While the Sheriff may have hit a roadblock as regards normalisation of Indo-Pak relations and brokering peace with the TTP, he cant be written-off yet. By cleverly raising the drone issue, he has been able to extract a $ 1.6 million aid package from Uncle Sam, thus exorcising the ghost of the Osama bin Laden Abottabad incident which was haunting US-Pak relations. And this is not the end, as the wily Sheriff will surely be able to extract more than his pound of flesh by playing the war on terror card. By visiting the US, he has also sent the Injun chief scurrying to Russia and China and return of the fragile peace along the LoC is now only a matter of time.
Whether Pakistans new Sheriff will be able to broker peace with the Injuns and the TTP, stop drone attacks, as well as help out the tribe of Kashmir is difficult to say. However, in his role as the Sheriff in the badlands of Pakistan, Nawaz has certainly acquitted himself well and by maintaining a good relationship with his army chief, made it clear that this time he wont be leaving town in a hurry and riding off into the sunset, a defeated man. On the contrary, the Sheriff has proved once again that he is a great survivor with the innate ability to turn the wheel of fortune in his favour- something that even a seasoned General like Musharaff probably did not reckon, when he disgraced and banished the Sheriff from the country!
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