Pakistan is not a Republic, in the classical sense. Pak Army is Pakistan. Politicians may try to project a civil face temporarily, but its always back to the Generals.
Zardari allegedly sought US intervention against a military takeover by the Generals after OBL’s execution. General Kiyani recently warned Gilani of ‘serious consequences’ for making remarks against the Army. Pak Supreme Court labeled PM Gilani as ‘not an honest man’. These are signs leading towards Gilani’s ouster.
In a changed situation US would want Pakistan to play a different role, with a different adversary this time. The war against Taliban is over. Talibans are set to open an office in Qatar, which is also the regional Central Command for US in the Persian Gulf. US agreed to release Taliban prisoners from Guantanamo Bay and Karzai is eager to hold talks with Taliban leadership, who are being de-vilified through media campaign which now points fingers at Haqqani Network as the real enemy.
Iran, the new enemy, could block the Straits of Hormuz stopping 20% of world oil shipment. More than that, Iran is developing nuclear technology which is unacceptable to Israel. In an event of war Karachi naval and air bases will be of extreme importance. Taking a position against Iran will be a lot harder than what was needed against Afghanistan. A democratic government may fail to suppress popular voice and therefore, once again, Pak Army Generals will be needed to push through and establish bases for supplies and logistics in case of war with Iran.