Articles of the year 2010

Published on August 08th, 2010

The Wikileaks come as no surprise to the Pakistanis, for we as a people are so accustomed to groveling as an established form when dealing with foreigners, regardless of rank . Maulana Fazlur Rahman when told the US Ambassador was busy, and was asked to state his message by the secretary, he dutifully wrote that he had come to request the Ambassador to support his case for the Prime Ministership of Pakistan and he had a certain number of parliamentarians on offer at a certain price. He already had the title of Maulana Diesel, so the terms were well known, only the price had to be negotiated. These were established facts, and the route to power was via Washington was also known. However, the contempt that the US officials had for the Pakistanis as highlighted in the leaks is surprising. And the contempt they were held in is apparent throughout the documents. Except for Imran Khan all the others were on offer, and were held in the contempt they deserved.

The Americans decided on Zardari—as he suited their 'interest' best. And with PM Gilani he agreed to allow the drone attacks, but the PM would continue to rave against them on the floor of the house. Pakistani blood being shed with the blessings of the Pakistani Government. Possibly as shameful as the surrender at Dacca. We may never know the number of Pakistanis handed over to the Americans or the bounty received. Musharraf and our army have a lot to answer for on this score. It seems that the GOP does not care for the people nor the blood shed of innocent civilians. This also applies to the politicians who insist on bulletproof cars for their own safety.

The statement of the Saudi monarch, saying that Zardari is the biggest impediment in the way of Pakistani progress is probably the most damaging, and does show that far from trying to assist Pakistan in its economic progress, they would like to keep Pakistan in its pitiful state of chaos. With the GOP dutifully parroting, 'Its our war.' How is it our war? Taking a cue from the Americans we should clearly state that we will not only stop shooting the Taliban, but we will also not allow our land routes to be used for the transport of men and munitions for attacks on the Taliban. Put simply—it may be in the American interest but is not in ours. So our borders should be closed, and if the Americans wish to continue their war in Afghanistan they should set up their own lines of supply. We are too poor a country, getting poorer by the day, our people have been brought into a mess not of our creation. Our industries have shut down, our road systems have been devastated by the 1000 heavy containers moving daily across Pakistan. There seems to be no end in sight. There also seems to be no reason for us to be in this fight. In any war there is an economic spin-off. An industry that supplies munitions etc. In this case all the goods are brought from the US. Even the rations such as Macdonalds and Kentucky Fried chicken, even mineral water is shipped from the US. So the only contribution from Pakistan is our highway system, which has been reduced to rubble. While our people starve, and our education and health facilities drop to amongst the lowest in the world. This is the cost of the American war to us Pakistanis. Apart from the suicide attacks that we face regularly. Killing and maiming our men, women and children. Why?

We have no quarrel with the Afghan people. Or in Waziristan, North or South. This is purely an American war, and we have been unnecessarily dragged into the quagmire. The Americans are already talking about a 'safe exit'. This will be underway soon, and they will move, hopefully they will take the 'protectors' of their interests --the politicians, with them. These politicians have destroyed any semblance of the rule of law, and have set new marks for corruption. From siphoning earthquake funds to flood rehabilitation. Education, Health, and everywhere a crony sits. It is all to protect the US interests, while Pakistan bleeds and the Pakistani continues to suffer. The Zardari Government should realize that the Americans have a history of cutting and running when they see fit. Leaving nothing for their erstwhile allies. Have the memories of the Americans scrambling to board the last helicopter on the American embassy roof faded? The Taliban Peace will also not be cheap. The Afghans are better negotiators than the Vietnamese. Thank God for our Imran Khan. It seems he is the only honest politician amongst the entire crop, and the rest can be dispensed with the other American interests.