Tariq Ali in Montenegro

Speaking in Montenegro, Tariq Ali talks on the current global political situation, the Arab Spring and what constitutes a vision for socialism today.

From the archive

  • ‘Pakistan Needs a Triple Bypass’

    July 23, 2009

    ‘Pakistan Needs a Triple Bypass’ by Tariq Ali for The London Review of Books (Diary), July 23, 2009

    June is never a good month on the plains. It was 46ºC in Fortress Islamabad a fortnight ago. The hundreds of security guards manning roadblocks and barriers were wilting, sweat pouring down their faces as they waved cars and motorbikes through. The evening breeze brought no respite. It, too, was unpleasantly warm, and it was difficult not to sympathise with those who, defying the law, jumped into the Rawal Lake, the city’s main reservoir, in an attempt to cool down. Further south in Lahore it was even hotter, and there were demonstrations when the generator at Mangla that sporadically supplies the city with electricity collapsed completely.

    As far as the political temperature goes there is never a good month in  …

  • ‘After Benazir’

    July 17, 2008

    ‘After Benazir’ by Tariq Ali for The London Review of Books, July 17, 2008

    To recapitulate. After Benazir Bhutto was assassinated last December, her will was read out to the family’s assembled political retainers. Her 19-year-old son, Bilawal, inherited the Pakistan People’s Party, but until he came of age her husband, Asif Zardari, would act as regent. The general election, postponed following her death, took place in February. The immediate impact of the stunning electoral defeat suffered by General Musharraf’s political party and his factotums was to dispel the disillusionment of the citizenry. Not for long. Musharraf is still clinging on to the presidency; Zardari is running the government with the help of his old cronies; the judges dismissed by Musharraf have still not been reinstated; the economy is a mess; and the US Air Force has started  …

  • ‘Bought with western cash’

    April 7, 2006

    ‘Bought with western cash’ by Tariq Ali for The Guardian, April 7, 2006

    Independent voices can be heard in Pakistan but NGOs are stifling genuine social movements

    While we were opening the World Social Forum (Asia) with virtuoso performances of sufi music, the country’s rulers were marking the centenary of the Muslim League—the party that created Pakistan and has ever since been passed on from one bunch of rogues to another—by gifting the organisation to General Pervez Musharraf, the country’s uniformed ruler.

    The secular opposition leaders, Nawaz Sharif and Benazir Bhutto, are both in exile. If they returned home they would face arrest for corruption. Neither is in the mood for martyrdom or relinquishing control of their organisations. Meanwhile, the religious parties are happily implementing neoliberal policies in the North-West Frontier Province, which is under their control. Incapable  …