Amidst the fury and frustration directed against Western policies is a factor that has not been thoroughly weighed. It is the role and complicity of domestic policy elites. When it mattered, they were too available to be the proxy of the powerful. This doormat approach neither brought security, nor dignity. They must be laughing hard in New Delhi. The domination of big money has delivered fictional democracy, which in reality is the dictatorship of the super-rich. There is more of a vetting process used to employ a peon than there is to install a president. The governing circles were too lazy to stop the slide into global insignificance of the Kashmir dispute; too quick to endorse US-led Desert Storm during the first Gulf conflict of 1990-1991 (this did not prevent the slapping down of the Pressler Amendment soon thereafter); too casual to contest the cartoon controversy; too incapable to empower a united Muslim bid for a veto-carrying and decision-making UN Security Council seat; and too inept to legally contest the illicit Indo-US nuclear deal. But the same elites are quite quick to protect their turf at home and too shameless not to reduce the sickening frequency of their begging bowl visits abroad. A cultural environment, which is quick to bid goodbye to basic honesty, contains the seeds of moral collapse. The dominant sociology of the subcontinent is characterised in its mistreatment of the underclass. It is eager to pounce on the powerless and overeager to grovel before the Chair. While the President and PM are allowed to play with the fortunes of the nation, match-winning cricketers like Kaneria and Zulqarnain are not allowed to play for Pakistan. Perhaps, appeasement is embedded in the psyche of society. Many believe that US foreign policy actions are guided by master planning and by strategic logic. On the Middle East, it certainly is not. There, it is often driven by crushing partisan pressures and lobbies, which damage larger US interests. The Middle East is littered with foreign policy disasters. Take a look at Turkey. It, too, was too available, and yet still got rebuffed by the EU. Now, its 'push-back has unsettled its traditional allies, which had for too long taken Turkey for granted. The grisly fate of Gaddafi is a graphic sample of the perils of over-accommodation abroad and over-oppression at home. He tried to fit in when his usefulness had expired. The Arab establishment, too, found him expendable. Despite a loud media, there is insufficient moral questioning within Pakistan. One acid test to ascertain the calibre of those in power or those vying for power would be to scrutinise their lifestyles. A reality check may reveal that, in substance, it is no different. Tall talk in public often is accompanied by lavish living in private. The silly search for a saviour helps mask the magnitude of the leadership deficit. Also, it is an easy escape for a society unwilling to conduct a searching self-examination of its own flaws. Meanwhile, the crisis seems endless. Is it fixable? Yes, but it would be pointless with the same old discredited approach. The writer is an attorney-at-law, writer, and policy analyst based in Washington DC. He is the first Pakistani American member admitted to the US Supreme Court Bar.