Pakistan’s Election Commission announced a postponement of the scheduled election this month until February 18 despite protests by Benazir Bhutto supporters. Observers expected a vote on January 8 would have resulted in a massive sympathy vote for the fallen leader of the Pakistan Peoples Party. Nawaz Shariff, leader of the PML-N, and an ally of Bhutto, strongly urged continuation of the voting process next week. President Musharraf is expected to address his nation today to discuss the election as well as agree to incorporation of foreign observers in an investigation of the assassination of Ms.Bhutto.
The George Bush grand design for a coalition of Bhutto and Musharraf had already collapsed long before her death. If election results on February 18 result in a victory for Musharraf’s Pakistan Muslim League party, one can expect the nation of Pakistan to erupt in anger such as never before in its history. Bush simply does not grasp the anger toward Musharraf among many Pakistanis.