Pakistan poll and the voice from the past

February 13, 2008

Posters of Benazir BhuttoThe Pakistan election campaign has been so muted until now that from the outside it can be hard to believe it’s really happening. So plaudits to Pakistan Politics  for posting the TV ads of the main political parties. The Pakistan Policy Blog  provides a summary of the ads, though you don’t need to understand the language to get the drift.

 Former prime minister Nawaz Sharif

The Pakistan Muslim League (N) of Nawaz Sharif relies heavily on projecting his personality, the footage of the former prime minister interspersed with pictures of a lion.

 Similarly the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP)  features clips of Benazir Bhutto.

But the Pakistan Muslim League (Q), which backs President Pervez Musharraf, appears to have found itself short of a popular personality. So it resurrected 1940s footage of Mohammad Ali Jinnah.  Maybe the PML-Q felt it might help to try to project itself as the party of the founder of the nation. But in what seems to me a tragically ill-chosen example, the clip shows Jinnah telling Pakistanis in his pukkah British accent: “You have no idea, you have no idea what is  waiting for you.”

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