We certainly live in exciting times and there is never a dull moment in Pakistan's Soap Opera politics. You can switch TV channels, which have become our political prism and watch non-state actors performing tragedies, drama and suspense, comedy and even showdown at the OK Coral, acting to scripts written by non-state politicians and senior lawyers, turn poets, by pressing the remote control of your TV. The News channels and their non-state analysts and experts are having a field day, analysing and dissecting tumbling events and coming up with bizarre and outlandish theories. And the poor Punjab CM does not know whether he is coming or going. Like a travelling salesman, by the time he unpacks his bags, he is told to pack again and move on. As for AZ, well you have to admit, the man is good, for he has done another triple. From playboy, a Mr. 10% and a fugitive on the run for almost two decades, he has walked into the lions' den and silenced and subdued the usually hostile, noisy and unruly tigers and cheetahs of the National Assembly. They were at their best behaviour, as if under a spell, similar to the one we see when Brother Altaf is addressing his party workers from distant shores. The only disturbance or crackling that you hear when Altaf Bhai is speaking is the knocking of shaky knees and static due to a bad connection. After lighting fires all over the county, AZ had calmly walked into the inferno and skilfully brought the raging fires under control without being singed. In his address to the parliamentarian, he spoke about the issues facing the country and wisely changed his usual 'I have instructed the PM to ..', by the more palatable, 'We have recommended to the PM that ....'. However, experts are still trying to figure out what he actually said or meant. He made his usual olive branch promises and 'Let us kiss and hug and be friends again' and with that, the much-awaited NA session was over. The government circles have described AZ's address as great, while the opposition and his critics have stated that it was the same stale, rancid wine in a new bottle and a counterfeit label. And this was followed by two 'Mother of all Statements'. One was by the President, that 'The government did not reinstate the judges under pressure' and the other gem was from the PM, 'PPP is responsible for the reinstatement of the CJ and the dismissed judges'. As they say, in Pakistan, you can try and fool all the people all the time. Another gem was from the clueless, but street smart Rehman Malik, our own version of MI5, RAW, Israel's Mossad and the Keystone Cops, all rolled into one. After another humiliating attack on the Police Academy in Lahore, RM has finally admitted that our vigilant and brave security agencies were fully aware of the attack, but were, 'Actually ill trained and ill equipped to do the job'. Finally, the penny has dropped. Now that the great revelation has been made to the good RM, what does he plan to do? What happened to the billion of dollars that US pumped into our coffers for improving our security systems? Whose Swiss Accounts are being kept safe with that money? Perhaps our vigilant RM should follow the money trail and ask Kalia and his friends to help him find out. And will heads roll and somebody be held accountable? Should he step down, as expected and let a more experienced and better-trained person take over or will he continue to stumble and fumble, while we wait for the next deadly attack? Well, we all know the answer to that. Fate and destiny have also done a triple and pulled the magic rug right from under the feet of our suave, highflying Governor of Punjab and sent him crashing down to earth. To his dismay, the SC of Pakistan has restored Shaabaz Sharif as the CM of Punjab. But the wily Gov had not given up and had very appropriately convened the Punjab Assembly on April Fools Day. As they say, 'Fools rush in', where angels fear to tread'. But now, with SS back in the saddle, it could be back to the pavilion for our 'go get her' Gov. But remember, 'there is many a slip between the lip and the cup' in Pakistan's politics. So let us see who has the last laugh, for those who laugh last, laugh the longest and AZ is a classic example of that. After almost two decades in the wilderness, he is having his share of the laughs, but with the rapid changing fate, for how long, is the question? In my article, 'The Circus comes to town', (The Nation, 12th March 04), I had described AZ as a High Flying Trapeze artist, who was an expert at doing the dangerous 'Triple', despite of a neck and back injury, which had kept him out of jail and the courts while he was on the run. 'The star artist of the High Flying Trapeze Act had been AZ, who had been out of circulation for almost 8 years due to an injury from his dare devil performances. But after 8 years of treatment by specialists, he had emerged hail and hearty, no worse from his isolation'. Well, now that he is in the pink of health, he is up to old tricks and has done it again and succeeded where past presidents had failed. 'He came, he saw and he conquered' the members of the NA with his triple somersault. There was no shoe or duputta throwing or hooting and thumping of the desk, except on cue. During his visit to Balochistan, AZ had told the people that he had come to the province to 'Heal their wounds' of the past and promised them, like past leaders, massive development programs, which have yet to be fulfilled. But will he walk the final talk and abolish the 17th Amendment and agree to give up his stronghold on power? And will the PM and his merry men and women of our parliament be able to put out all the other the blazes, especially the March of the Taliban and the American drones hovering over head? A few days back, I had received an email from a Mr Abdullah Khoso, relating to a 'Petition to bring Pervez Musharraf before the law', who had raised the following questions to all: 'What have you done for those millions of Bengalis who were butchered on the streets? Have you put a petition against the previous presidents and heads of ethnic groups who are supposedly behind the killings of hundreds of innocent people in different times? There is list of unending questions, for this moment, it is enough to irritate you all?' I had forwarded the email to some friends and as expected, there was an influx of comments, of which the bottom line was, 'let us sweep the past under the carpet and move on, as who will bell the cat, as all have skeletons in their cupboards'. Would that be the right thing to do? You, dear reader, be the judge of that. E-mail: trust@super.net.pk