It has happened — the most awaited costume change in a long time. Pakistan’s General Pervez Musharraf will now be plain old President Pervez after trading in his uniform for civvies. Now the more cynical among you may ask if this is mere window-dressing. Seeing old Mush’s tearful farewell to what had become his second skin, one may be forgiven for thinking that behind the new wardrobe lies a dyed-in-the-wool khaki aficionado. For years we have been fatigued by his excessive fondness for fatigues. Many a time has he threatened to drop his military epaulettes for a sharp sherwani or a natty suit. But his sartorial preferences did not permit this.
Now the change-over has happened. The general showed that he cut from stronger cloth than your average civilian when he lyrically described the Pakistani army as the best in the world. Now recent developments may have left the general in tatters, but let’s hope that the quick change has not affected his mind and he has discerned some quality in the Pakistani army that has been hitherto a well-kept secret. But the dressing down ceremony took on even more lyrical strains as Mush handed over the baton to his successor to the strains of Auld Lang Syne. The significance cannot have been lost on General Ashfaq Kayani, let old acquaintance not be forgot unless he wants the Prez to tear a strip off him.
We can only hope that the general does not have a wardrobe malfunction now and accidentally turn up in his old threads. This would confirm suspicions that he really is a wolf in sheep’s clothing, something he would not want the spiffy suits in Washington to pay attention to. Not to mention that this would have the Indian government tied up in knots and the rest of us in stitches.