Its been a week full of dramatic activities with a sort of feel that things are spinning quickly and strangely out of control. Unrelated events seem to be ganging up against the government of the day, which appears quite helpless on the many fronts it faces. The strike by the employees of PIA brought all that has been festering inside the once hugely successful airline to the fore, with its domestic and international flights coming to a complete standstill. The helpless passengers have been the worst victims, apart from the revenue loss in millions to an organisation already deeply in trouble. On the surface, the agitation was against an agreement made with the Turkish Airlines to take over some 'profit-making routes, as claimed by the authorities, and the removal of some personnel. The strikers also demanded the resignation of the MD, an appointee of the President and friend of longstanding. In actual fact, it was a cry for help from the 22,000 employees of the airline to rescue and resuscitate it. An organisation that has known success, and which has seen good managers, hankers for the times when it was quoted of as an example, particularly in the Arab world. If the decline in the airline is not arrested, it is a safe prediction that it too will go the way of Pakistan Railways, and we will be left with little option but to use the Korean Bus Service in Pakistan, for our means of domestic transport because it keeps going from strength to strength with its consistent quality of service. What about sub-letting both the airline and the railways to the Koreans? While the required resignation of PIAs MD was not really forthcoming until this column was being written, the President has been pleased to accept the resignations of the entire federal cabinet. The idea is to make a new cabinet, which is lean and mean but with a core group of ministers re-appointed to give some continuity. At the last meeting of the 60 odd cabinet members, the Prime Minister applauded his team for their work and contribution. The recounting of deeds had no mention of the 'c word, which is perceived to be the major distinction of the government. It is always so much better when the applause for an outgoing team of ministers is given by those whom they have governed. There is only a deafening silence at that end, instead. The Raymond Davis affair gets messier by the day. It has become crystal clear that Raymond is no ordinary spy. He must be extremely important to America for some reason that they are coming down like a ton of bricks on Pakistan to release him. There is a never-ending pressure of calls after calls and visits after visits from various American authorities on our hemmed-in top guns. The bulk of the country feels that he should not be handed over to the Americans and should face the law, but this opinion seems to be having a zero impact on the biggest defenders of human rights. His case has also highlighted the strange goings-on of American gun-toting undercover agents prowling around in the country armed both with weapons and knowledge of local languages. It is indeed most disturbing. We have plenty of our own problems without the assistance of spies like Raymond Davis to add to them, particularly, when America and Pakistan are supposed to be allies in the war on terror. As the saying goes, one does not need enemies if one has friends like America. President Asif Ali Zardari has invited all political parties to come for (no, not a wedding reception for himself, as rumours would have us believe), but a roundtable conference to find joint solutions to multiple problems. The sad part is that nobody is biting. There is going to be no 'no broadbased consensus to difficult situations, which will help this government. The writing on the wall is getting more pronounced with every passing day, and it is asking for a change in the way we are governed; it is asking for new faces and new options. In short, it is advising to try out the roads less travelled. Postscript: The millions and millions of people crying for President Hosni Mubarak to step down in Egypt have, as yet, not succeeded. He has enraged his countrymen further by saying that he will hand over power to his Vice President, but not resign himself. We see history unfolding and we can compare it to our own situation, as there too the military receives a huge amount of sustenance from the US, and is thus bound to pay more heed to it than to the millions on the streets wanting regime change and undiluted democracy. Across the miles that divide us, the people of Pakistan, in the month of Faiz Ahmed Faizs 100th birthday, sing with and for their Egyptian brothers: Hum dekain gay, Lazim hai kay hum bhi dekahain gay, Wo din kay jis ka waada hai, Jo loh-e-azal mai likha hai, Jab mehkoomon kai paon taley ye dharti dhar dhar dharkey gi, Aur ahle sitam kai sarron per, Bijli ker ker karhkey gi, Hum dekhain gay, Lazim hai kai hum bhi dekhain gay The writer is a freelance columnist. Email: