Pakistan’s permanent crisis

The streets of Pakistan have in recent days resonated with strikes, gunfire, and the cries of demonstrators. A crisis sparked by the suspension of the supreme court’s chief justice on 9 March 2007 has exploded into a full-scale emergency with no end in sight. The turmoil raises acute questions about Pakistan’s political future. But it also highlights a more deep-rooted question regarding the very possibility of political and economic progress in a country so heavily dominated by one institution: the Pakistani military.