LONDON: The British media in its response to the Pervaiz Musharraf's resignation on Monday has reported that Pakistan Army's rejection spelled end for him. He was never falsely modest, but the serial misjudgments that led eventually to his resignation yesterday were those of a military man with limited understanding of politics and of the social trends that, in part, his own policies had initiated. British newspaper The Guardian in its report says that General Kayani was perceived as a close Musharraf ally when he was appointed last November. However, as Musharraf's popularity fell, Kayani pulled the army back from politics, ordering soldiers to steer clear of politicians and withdrawing senior officers from sinecures - patronage jobs - in civilian institutions. In the February general elections, Kayani warned Musharraf against any attempt at manipulation in a further sign that the army had abandoned the former head of the army to his fate. Given the importance of the army in Pakistan, Kayani can be expected to be one the country's most influential figures, courted by the US for its "war on terror" in the largely lawless border area between Pakistan and Afghanistan, and by Pakistan's politicians to ensure that the army stays in the barracks and does not stage another coup. Pervez Musharraf always liked to play the commando: decisive, daring, the master tactician. His first appearance on the nation's televisions after taking power in 1999 was at 3am, when the jammed single national TV channel cleared to reveal him in commando fatigues. So what happens now? First an interim president will be appointed, the chairman of the senate. Then a new election will be held for the post, with votes cast by the two houses of the national assembly and the members of Pakistan's four provincial assemblies too. Candidates and campaign are likely to be the subject of frantic negotiations, horse trading and political infighting, and will almost certainly see a new arrangement of power between the two major coalition partners: Nawaz Sharif's Pakistan Muslim League-N and Asil Asif Zardari's Pakistan People's party. A new series of constitutional amendments to restrict the power of the president, based on the original 1973 constitution which gives much more power to the office of prime minister, is likely. As ever in Pakistan, the various legal and political manoeuvres over the next months will be complicated, opaque and will obsess the English language media and the elite of Islamabad, Karachi and Lahore " particularly the significant number among them who welcomed the coup and supported Musharraf for a long time. Interest in the villages and small towns in which two-thirds of the population live will be more limited, despite the effects of the new private television chains. Musharraf's problems are far from over. Though covered for his military coup in 1999 by a constitutional amendment, he has no such protection for the state of emergency he declared last autumn, bar some contested court judgments, and is thus going to be open to prosecution as long as he remains in Pakistan. There are also a lot of people " mainly Islamic militants " who want to kill him. For the moment, Musharraf looks likely to be spared the courts. Some will regret that Pakistan has been spared a long and drawn-out battle to hold Musharraf to account. "An impeachment would have taken a long time but would have shown that coup-makers can be held accountable for their actions and set an important precedent," said Professor Osama Siddique, a constitutional expert at Lahore University of Management Sciences. Yet the key factor in Musharraf's yesterday's decision, one friend said bitterly, was his "hanging out to dry" by the army. Another way of looking at it is that General Ashfaq Kayani - who replaced the president as head of Pakistan's military when Musharraf belatedly became a civilian leader last year - has decided to restore the army's battered reputation domestically and internationally by withdrawing to the role of "guarantor" of Pakistani democracy, rather than being its dominant actor. Along with the positive role played in the February general elections, where Kayani none too subtly warned Musharraf off any attempt at manipulation, the overall impression now that the president has gone is that this particular cycle of army rule has ended. There are shades here of 1988 when, following the sudden death of General Zia ul-Haq after 11 years of dictatorial rule, the military top brass allowed a relatively smooth transition to civilian government. Benazir Bhutto won the subsequent elections. The bad news is that Musharraf's passing is unlikely to make much difference to the raging militancy in the west, nor revive the flagging economy. Civilian leaders are unlikely to be able to influence any elements of the security establishment that are assisting Taliban militants in Afghanistan, nor are they necessarily better placed to deal with the many structural problems that both fuel the militancy and weaken Pakistan's ability to combat it. At least, however, the charge of being Washington's stooge will be harder to make against Musharraf's successor " or that of being a closet Islamist. Nine years after that first speech to the nation, Musharraf appeared in a bank manager's dark suit, blue shirt and tie. But the ex-president's problem was always that he could never shake off the stain of khaki. This, at least, is one thing he still shares with his country, says the report.