That is how strong democracy can be, and this is only the start. President Obama, the other day committed himself to working with the new dispensation, tellingly, as equal partners, during a telephone conversation with PML-N chief Mian Nawaz Sharif. He was desirous of meeting him in person. Meanwhile, reports in the press indicate that Secretary of State John Kerry and UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon are also optimistic about democracy and future prospects. Mr Kerry is preparing to visit Pakistan soon.

This time around there is no ‘wait and see’ or ‘cards being played close to the chest’ or merely a dry crumb of consolation. The difference is subtle but a government with a decisively populist mandate has now the best possible chance of resetting the relationship with the US. That this is possible after five years of democratic rule, transitioning through a free and fair elections, is remarkable for our country, and has brought with it a wave of optimism, which will hopefully wash away some of the conspiracy theories bogging down our foreign policy imperatives. The idea that the vote itself is the biggest power broker appears to be in currency in Pakistan; it goes without saying its substance is appreciated nowhere more than in places where Westminster models are in practice. We, the people, and those who stand holding the helm, are now part of a team that can talk with our heads held high, can negotiate from a favourable vantage and make our voices heard. The idea that the government is representing its citizens, and a good many of them have chosen it, leaves a salutary impact on everyone involved in the process. And that is where the people’s power comes in. Disputes breeding popular resentment, it is hoped will now be firmly dealt with, and where there are unnecessary misunderstandings, these will be eliminated.

 Where issues like the drone attacks have caused much resentment, and justly so, there have also been carefully constructed narratives to derive outrage from the Pakistani people, where their state has seemed helpless in front of a superpower, but in fact is not. The case of the drones comes to mind. The Pakistani people do not wish to be lied to any longer. They do not wish to be deceived by exaggerations, or placated by empty promises, or shown dreams of unrealistic influence, as a consequence of irregular behaviour. The time has come for Pakistan to reintegrate itself with the world, and remove itself from the character of 'enfant terrible' that it has come to be recognised as in recent years. The world is reaching out to a democratically reoriented Pakistani government. And the people who elected it can only hope that it will not let them down in reaching back with equal warmth.