Aristotle states there are only two forms of governments in which people adapt and make variations of. These two forms are Democracy and Oligarchy. Aristotle defines Democracy as a form of government in which those who are free, are generally the rulers of that culture. While he defines Oligarchy as a form of government in which the rich are rulers. He also states that it is by pure chance that the free make up a majority while the rich are a select few within a given society. Aristotle states there will be as many variations of these two governments as there are combinations of different classes within a community.
Pakistan is another variation based off Aristotle’s ideas. Starting out as a democracy, Pakistan faced numerous issues with military coups and domestic terrorism at home. Benazir Bhutto who served as Pakistan’s Prime Minister twice attempted to spread democracy to her home country as her father, Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, attempted to do. Following Bhutto’s dismissal of her post amid corruption allegations, General Pervez Musharraf seized power in October 1990. He named himself President while still commanding the Pakistani military. Bhutto stated in 2007 before she was going to run for reelection for prime minister seat that she feared what consequences could result from a dictator running the country. “It is my fear that unless extremism is eliminated, the people of Pakistan could find themselves in a contrived conflict deliberately triggered by the militants who now threaten to take over Pakistan’s nuclear assets… My people could end up being bomb, their homes destroyed, and their children orphaned simply because a dictator has focused all his attention on containing democrats instead of containing extremists….” In which Bhutto is later assassinated at political rally in 2007, forcing Musharraf to resign among allegations that his administration played a role in the assassination plot.
While in present day American society there isn’t a fear of assassination like the one Bhutto was tragically acquainted. However, American society doesn’t get off so easily. The burden of spreading democratic values to our neighbors and the world remains. Especially when western society hasn’t always nurtured democratic growth in the middle east. As Bhutto points out western society supported a dictator in Pakistan for other reasons. “During this time the west showed a cold indifference toward supporting democracy among Muslim states and leaders for reasons that were either economic (oil) or political (anti-communism).” At the time, Russia had invaded Afghanistan, and thus, the United States supported Musharraf the current dictator of Pakistan. Resulting in the United States seeming self-contradictory to our previous stances of politics and human rights.
It was a great shame that United States did not try to intervene in Pakistan until a Russian threat had come along. At which point, it was already too late. As a world leader, America should be attempting to nurture democracy wherever it happens to reside. As Americans we should be outraged that a military dictator grabbed political power over a civilian democracy. As American’s we’ve been blessed that this sort of action hasn’t happened before. While it is easy to reflect on the past and blame ourselves, we only caused part of the issue. As Bhutto also states there are problems within her own religious culture that only sparked issues further. “…theological fight among factions of Islam that also often seeks raw political and economic power at the expense of the people.” While America can be blamed for not nurturing democracy in other parts of the world, we are not the only the ones who can be blamed. Some citizens within Pakistan must also come to realize that there are different claims within the Quran that what they may have previously been taught.