Christina Lambs book Waiting for Allah was one of my first introductions to a Pakistan that nobody spoke or wrote about. It writes about Pakistan's history and in particular the heady days between 1988-1990 and Beneazir Bhutto. I thought I would share some memorable lines from the book:
Waiting for Allah: Benazir Bhutto and Pakistan
Why should we who have never lost a war, accept orders from those who have never won one?
-Mujahidin Commander Rahim Wardak on Pakistani interference in the Afghan conflict
"We told the US you need a worm to catch a fish and we can provide one. ..but Haq admitted Hekmatyar could not be truste :'He's the sort of man who would share your bed then slit your throat" General Fazle Haq claiming credit for creating Hekmatyar
'I have been kept in power so long by the grace of Allah who has appointed me to carry out his task of making Pakistan a truly Islamic country'
-Gen Zia-ul Haq
'In 1985, it cost 10-11 million rupeesto win a national seat. Now there is a new class of nouveau riche who have grown fat from smuggling , arms sales and drugs, pushing up the stakes even higher. To the poor man in the street he has no reason for faith in any politicians ' - Sardar Sherbaz Mazari
'In a master stroke he had secured the help of one of Pakistan's brightest journalists, Hussain Haqqani, who wrote for the far eastern economic review, to go through lists of journalists arriving in the hotels and give them a run down of the political situation from an apparently independent and very plausable viewpoint' - authors comments
'Feelings were running so high that Sharif told a rally 'he would dump the Bhuttos remains in the Arabian sea' - authors comments on Nawaz Sharif campaiging in the 1988 general election.
' I had many atrocities recounted to me - The most common one was the ambushing of a bus carrying students from the Sindh students Federation to Larkana. 9 students died and 120 were jailed
- the author on the 1983 military operation in Sindh
'When a Sindhi comes to power, the Sindhis are against us ; when pathan is in power; the Pathans will fight us . Will whoever comes to power always victimise us ' -authors interview with Altaf Hussain
'We have tapes of Azim Tariq and Imran Farooq from the MQM meeting an Army commander in Hyderabad before the incident, showing there was total connivance. We know too that the curfew was broken with the aid of local commanders and army trucks were used to transport snipers'
- authors interview with Tariq Rahim about the Pucca Qila massacre
'We apologise for this temporary democratic interruption. Normal martial law will be resumed shortly ' (graffiti on Karachi wall August 1990)
ReferencesReproduced for educational purposes. Copyright
Lamb, Christina (4 July 1991) Waiting For Allah