Eric Hanson-New Media-A Look at Pervez Musharraf’s Return to Pakistan

Posted on May 15, 2013 by


ABSTRACT: After taking power in Pakistan via a military coup in 2001, Pervez Musharraf served as the president of Pakistan until 2008.  At that point, he placed himself into exile, mainly in London.  At the beginning of 2013, Musharraf announced that he would return to Pakistan and attempt to run for office in the elections later this year.  He expected to be welcomed home as a hero, but rather was greeted with Taliban death threats and an arrest warrant.  To date, he has been banned from running in elections for the remainder of his life, has been placed under house arrest, and is awaiting a trial in an anti-terrorism court.  He is being tried for disobeying Pakistan’s constitution as well being a conspirator in the assassination of Benazir Bhutto, a former political rival.  It has proven to be near impossible for the media to discuss the situation regarding Pervez Musharraf without making references of some sort to Islam.  Although the strength and topic of these references vary by source, they all frame Islam and different lights.  This framing is done through use of the term Mujahedeen, mention of Islamic militants, the use of the term hell, the absence of information regarding Musharraf, analysis of Musharraf’s previous actions towards Muslims, and the discussion of the All Pakistan Muslim League.

Further Reading:

Al Ahram Weekly (

Challenger, David and Tom Watkins, “From President to Exile to…? Pakistan’s Pervez Musharraf Plots Next Step” CNN, March 25, 2013 (

Khan, Jamil and Rebecca Santana, “Pervez Musharraf Return: Former Pakistan President Back Amid Death Threats” Huffington Post, March 24, 2013 (

Leiby, Richard, “Musharraf Arrest Risks a Clash of Powers” Washington Post, April 19, 2013 (

“’The Mujahedeen of Islam Have Prepared a Death Squad to Send Musharraf to Hell:’ Taliban Threat to Former Pakistan President as He Returns from Four Year Exile” Daily Mail, March 24, 2013 (

“A New Low for Pervez Musharraf” AlJazeera, April 20, 2013 (

“Pervez Musharraf’s Party Decides to Boycott May 11 Polls” The Times of India, May 4, 2013 (

Reuters, “Pakistan Taliban Threaten to Send Musharraf to ‘Hell’” The Jerusalem Post, March 23, 2013 (

Sherazi, Zahir Shah, “Pakistani Taliban Threaten to Assassinate Musharraf” Dawn, March 23, 2013 (

Posted in: Islam