Ha, ha, ha! General Musharraf seems to have used his diplomatic powers (the only bit of civilian power he seems to officially enjoy now) to stop Geo TV from broadcasting talk shows believed to be "against" him. The trouble with these guys in uniforms is that the only thing they understand is power...and perhaps it is wise to speak to them in the language they understand. Officially, reports have it that Dubai authorities have threatened to cancel Geo TV's broadcast licences if the shows are not stopped.
Now, I have some cute lil points to share:
1) If Dubai Media City wants media business happening out of their wonderful emirate, they must learn to deal with media's half-brother, a.k.a. Democracy. The irony is that Malaysia, Dubai and Singpaore are keen to attract foreign investment in the tech business but now they have to accept the M in the holy trinity of Technology, Media and Telecoms....and it is a package deal, really. Singapore's excellent infrastructure has helped some media companies overlook its less-than-democratic credentials, but it is a tricky business.
2) The Pakistani general, in his glorious labyrinth (to borrow the memorable phrase from the title of Marquez's novel) will hopefully wake up to the fact that political and military powers are not the only forms of the five-letter thing. Technological power is such that you can now convert that Geo TV programme into a podcast and message it across the planet and have it watched in Detroit, Dera Ghazi Khan or Dubai. Okay, that may be a while away, but how about some cheap DVD recordings smuggled on camel's backs from the Balochistan border? Aunties in Lahore can watch it in peace alongside Indian soap serials or Bollywood movies.
Oh, I am not even talking about YouTube here.
Like I said at the beginning of the post: Ha, ha, ha!