THERE is still an insistence that the President, Prime Minister, members of the federal cabinet, the services chiefs and other dignitaries invited to an iftar-dinner at the Marriott were the targets of the suicide bomber whose attack killed and injured so many, and led to the gutting of what had been Islamabad's premier hotel. This insistence is maintained almost singlehandedly by PM's Interior Adviser Rehman Malik, who claims that this was the real target of the suicide bomber, who would have landed in the midst of such a dinner, had it taken place, along with his deadly load. However, though the hotel has been virtually destroyed, enough has survived for the hotel authorities to say categorically that there was no booking made for any such dinner. Thus the PM's Adviser is shown beyond all reasonable doubt to have made a statement which is not true. This comes in the wake of the incorrect statement by the same Adviser that PM House was the actual target. The occasion, according to Mr Malik, was the same: a dinner to mark the success of President Asif Zardari's inaugural address to Parliament, which had taken place earlier the same day. If this is the situation in which Mr Malik finds himself, he should vacate his office as soon as possible. After all, he has been appointed not just an adviser, but has been placed in charge of the Interior Ministry, because he is supposedly eminently qualified for the task of pointman in the War On Terror, and the undeniable fact that he has not been elected to either House of Parliament, has been overlooked. Indeed, the IB and ISI were also recently placed under his Ministry's control. He is obviously someone who enjoys the trust of the powers that be, but equally obviously someone who does not enjoy a command over his ministry, or at least over its subject matter. The PPP is close to a cabinet expansion, which provides a good opportunity to find a suitable parliamentarian for the Interior portfolio.