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Musharraf takes off his uniform: Pakistan enters a new phase of the class struggle (tags)

Events in Pakistan are moving fast. Yesterday General Musharraf quit as army chief, and was hastily sworn as president on the same day. The general hopes that in this way he will win respectability in the run-up to the election promised for January 8. This sets the stage for a big shift in Pakistan. The splits and conflicts at the top are providing a breach through which the accumulated discontent of the masses is thrusting itself forward. Events will then take on a logic of their own. The dictatorship has been brought to its knees by mass demonstrations and protests and by the intolerable contradictions that afflict Pakistan at all levels. As we predicted, the return of Benazir Bhutto brought millions of workers and peasants onto the streets. This is not thanks to, but in spite of, the policies and conduct of Benazir, who is an ally of US imperialism and until recently was attempting to reach a compromise with Musharraf.

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