For the past couple of years, there hasn’t been a lot of positive news coming out of Pakistan and although it has remained quite insulated from the effects of the global recession, things haven’t been too rosy.
I was recently reading a nice article on Dawn titled Silly Season in Pakistan that explored the possibility of ridding the country of the current president (don’t get your hopes up) and the following part caught by attention:
The macroeconomic indicators have stabilised; inflation is down; the power crisis will ease now that summer is over; suicide bombings are down; a degree of normality is returning to Swat; Baitullah Mehsud is dead and his headquarters in South Waziristan is under siege; the judicial crisis is over; a truce, albeit an uneasy one, is holding in Punjab; the American demands to ‘do more’ against the Taliban are muted; drone strikes are less of a political hot potato; relations with India are edging towards a post-Mumbai phase; parliament is upping its legislative activity — it’s not quite singing-in-the-rain happy, but neither is it the nightmare that was Pakistan in 2007 and 2008.
We have gotten so used to bad news, that we haven’t realized that things actually aren’t as bad as one might imagine. The wildly unpopular government may be lame sitting ducks, but they must be doing something right.
When I arrived here in 2003, I didn’t have much hope for this country. As in the years before that, there wasn’t much to be hopeful about. However, the following few years brought about huge, mostly positive, social and economic changes that among other things, provided a lot of hope for the future.
That hope quickly started to fade in the turbulent year that was 2007 and has now pretty much disappeared. Thinking about what the above article said, I have to wonder. Is it time to hope again?