America part of WikiLeaks game

Published: December 5, 2010

The writer served as chief of army staff from 1988-91 and is chairman of FRIENDS (Foundation for Research on International Environment National Development and Security)

The WikiLeaks revelations confirm the obvious, more than what it informs us about the darker corners of US diplomacy. In fact, it is cyber war, in the new game of psy-warfare, targeting individuals and countries to cover up the shame of defeat of the war in Afghanistan, the war in Iraq and the 2006 Israeli war in Lebanon. The cyber war has been launched to achieve three objectives. The first is to defame those countries which have had a role, direct or indirect, in the defeat of the Americans and their allies in Iraq, Lebanon and Afghanistan and create mistrust amongst them so that they are not able to challenge future American plans in the region.

The second is to create conditions for a civil war in Afghanistan and, out of the resulting chaos and confusion, reduce Pakistan and Iran to subservience. The third is to establish Indian hegemony over South Asia, including Afghanistan, and project American strategic interests in the region.

The technique used is typical of a ‘psy’ operations approach, where truth and lies are mixed. It should be noted that the leaks have not said a word about Israel. Given what WikiLeaks has achieved — breaking the secret code used by US diplomats — would suggest that a country is behind it. The whole issue, no doubt, has created ripples around the world, but it will subside as its source, intent and purpose are closely scrutinised.

Hillary Clinton’s concerns over the WikiLeaks revelations seem a bit hard to believe. In the first place, did she not know what it was up to? Also, why couldn’t it have been stopped and its website blocked, since it is a crime to release state secrets. Surely, this could have been done if the US government so wanted. But it did not, because this is part of the game.

In recent years, Pakistan, Iran, Turkey and Saudi Arabia have drawn closer to each other. A multi-billion dollar gas pipeline agreement has been signed with Iran, though Pakistan doesn’t have enough funds for the project (China is willing to provide support). The Iranian president visited Riyadh early this year and established a new level of understanding with the Saudi. Having had the bitter experience of a civil war in Afghanistan, induced by the Americans after the Soviet withdrawal in 1989, the Iranians are now opposed to any such design by the occupation forces. WikiLeaks, thus, is a crude attempt to create distrust between Pakistan, Iran and Saudi Arabia at this critical juncture when the occupation forces face the dilemma of exiting Afghanistan without any understanding reached with the Taliban.

Thus a sinister plan, worked out by a Brussels-based think-tank, is emerging to divide Afghanistan into three ethnic zones and deny overall control to the Taliban. Its main features are that a few months will be given to Karzai to negotiate peace and evolve a plan with the Taliban and the Northern Alliance. However, if this fails, then Afghanistan is to be divided into three ethnic zones which will work as federating units. Badakhshan, Samangan and Sari Pul will be handed over to Tajik and Uzbek warlords. Provinces in the east and southeast will be given to the Taliban and other tribal leaders. Kabul, Parwan, Wardak and Logar provinces will be retained by the Americans, supported by about 10,000 American troops, operating from four air bases in this region.

Published in The Express Tribune, December 5th, 2010.

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Reader Comments (23)

  • Talha
    Dec 5, 2010 - 3:16AM

    Maybe you could send Assange a case of Mangoes.Recommend

  • Dec 5, 2010 - 3:25AM

    I cant believe that this is a person who was once the Chief of Army Staff of the Pakistan Army. You seem to have conveniently ignored the fact that just because the Pakistani media is focusing on Pakistan, Afghanistan and the Gulf States, that doesnt mean that that is the whole sum of the “leaks”.

    Please refer to: http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/interactive/2010/nov/28/us-embassy-cables-wikileaks Here go to Maps – the originating country – then Israel.

    There is a whole lot about Italy, Russia, Great Britain, France, Costa Rica, Paraguay, China etc, and none of them have been painted in a particularly positive light.
    Please kindly explain why would the US potentially compromise its relationships with so many countries around the world just to enhance “Indian Hegemony” in South Asia?
    Or please sir kindly explain, the same wikileaks also detail how the Indian government acknowledged that no evidence of ISI involvement was found in the Mumbai attacks. Should we also ignore that as a lie? Or what about the details of the murder of civilians in Iraq and Afghanistan, are those too a lie?

    In the first place, did she not know what it was up to? Also, why couldn’t it have been stopped and its website blocked, since it is a crime to release state secrets

    It may be a crime to release state secrets of the US in the US, but the servers are located in Sweden, and Mr. Assange himself is Australian. And Mrs. Clinton did know what was going on. For the week before the release of these documents, the headlines all across the world were of US diplomats meeting their counterparts to pre-empt the leak! Our government too, according to our media also received some phone calls.

    And which is this think-tank in Brussels? Since when have academics, researchers and honorary board members become super villains!

    The rivalry between Saudi Arabia and Iran pre-dates the current leadership, or the soviet invasion of Afghanistan. Which cordial relationships are you referring to?

    I know I always come off as anti-Army etc etc, and I get enough emails reminding me of that. But please, could someone kindly explain to me, how an individual, who has held so much power in our country, can come up with such drivel! I hope this is not the same thinking that permeates amongst our current leadership. Recommend

  • Ayesha Ijaz Khan
    Dec 5, 2010 - 5:47AM

    General–may I suggest you log on to wikileaks before writing your next piece. Not a word about Israel?? There are more cables from Tel Aviv than from Islamabad. If the Pakistani media has not bothered to focus on them or you have not bothered to read them then it does not make wikileaks suspect. Recommend

  • Maulana Diesel
    Dec 5, 2010 - 6:11AM

    General Sahib – just so that u know the senior advisor to the prime minister of Canada called for the assassination of Julian Assange on a live CBC news show. Doesn’t seem that much of a conspiracy to me sir.Recommend

  • Saif M
    Dec 5, 2010 - 7:19AM

    This is an immature analysis. One hopes that our current crop of generals is better informed and have better analytical ability.Recommend

  • faraz
    Dec 5, 2010 - 7:25AM

    Unfortunately in pakistan, we put blame for all our problems on external forces. Due to palestine issue, people have natural dislike for Israel so they readily buy all such weird Zionist conspiracy theories, Everyone knows how the politicians and generals discuss internal politics with US Ambassador. The general may well remember that 20 years ago, the US Ambassador attended an official meeting of the afghan cell where it was decided to capture Jalalabad. This time, atleast Ann Paterson hasnt attended official meetings of the Government!Recommend

  • SKChadha
    Dec 5, 2010 - 10:33AM

    As a true patriotic nationalist, General Sahib appears to be in a damage control exercise to save the grace whatever little is left, in governing the nation known as Pakistan ….!!!Recommend

  • Humanity
    Dec 5, 2010 - 12:10PM

    Wow! This persistent denial coupled with belief in conspiracies does not sound promising for Research on International Environment National Development and Security.Recommend

  • Jameel
    Dec 5, 2010 - 1:06PM

    Say something else sir. This oneliner of “conspiracy against Pakistan” will not fool the masses now.Recommend

  • Jasmine
    Dec 5, 2010 - 2:18PM

    @Talha .. best comment ever :PRecommend

  • Dec 5, 2010 - 2:34PM

    I am sure General Sahib in a sequel will reveal why then US and the rest of the western world are hunting for Assange.
    If this is a representative sample of how the most powerful people and institutions in Pakistan view the world around them, God save Pakistan and everyone else.Recommend

  • J.A. Khan
    Dec 5, 2010 - 2:43PM

    I find it mildly amusing to read comments from the (often) hilarious anti-army brigade which call General Beg’s article “drivel”, “immature”, etc. Please spare us – the public – the line-by-line rebuttals to convey your own self-congratulatory ‘superior’ (?) analysis!!

    Those with a more “nuanced” approach to foreign policy would surely comprehend Beg merely questioning the possibility of the leaks in an age of the unparalleled technological/government control – and thats all it is. By taking rather immature pot-shots at COAS Beg, it probably says a lot more about the thinking that permeates amongst our society.Recommend

  • Watty
    Dec 5, 2010 - 7:42PM

    I suggest that General Beg read Mr. Farrukh Khan Pitafi’s excellent article “Exposing Pakistan’s demons” in Express Tribune at: http://tiny.cc/cncql

    I quote from the above source: “In our hearts, we still want to export destabilising ideologies and view our neighbors in terms of their “strategic depth”. A closer look at our plight does not allow for such imperial luxuries. A country like ours, which is on the brink of bankruptcy, deeply polarised and going through an identity crisis, cannot afford to cultivate a harvest of Frankensteins, who one day may rip it apart. Hence, the above mentioned criterion will have to be met, whether those in Islamabad like it or not.”

    General Beg’s views represent a fictional Pakistan that perhaps exists only in the minds of the Pakistani Army.Recommend

  • AzA
    Dec 5, 2010 - 8:48PM

    General, may I ask, what books have you been reading lately?Recommend

  • Dec 6, 2010 - 12:08AM

    Syed Nadir – thank you for the link. Very comprehensive. As you said, very few countries have been spared.

    And one of the more telling comments for me that perhaps the general will know the answer to

    “Menon acknowledged Pakistani suspicions about India,s intentions in Afghanistan and explained that India has made numerous efforts over the past few years to try to allay Pakistan’s concerns, only to be rebuffed. Menon said that he, as High Commissioner, had offered to President Musharraf to sit down and explain exactly what India was doing in Afghanistan, without even asking for a reciprocal explanation from Pakistan, but that Pakistan officials — not just Musharraf — “have avoided it in every way.”Recommend

  • Talat
    Dec 6, 2010 - 8:14AM

    @watty, good referenceRecommend

  • Rizwan T Khan
    Dec 6, 2010 - 10:50AM

    I agree with the General. Even if we not but it solely lets not completely ignore the points. The very basic question is why couldn’t US stop these leaks since what was originated from US. And the fact that the WikiLeak did bring it to US govt the details before leaking the details and yet US govt acted like a dummy till it was out. All I am saying is that we should keep all our senses open and keep the analytical view wide.Recommend

  • Aristo
    Dec 6, 2010 - 11:20AM

    Mr. Beg seems to be lost in the 80′s but criticizing him does not mean we agree with the Indians, as they are no angels either. Recommend

  • T Khan
    Dec 6, 2010 - 12:40PM

    Now this conspiracy theorist is no ordinary person; he was once the most powerful person in the country, virtually running the government for a few years. No wonder we are in such a state… Alas!! Recommend

  • Talha
    Dec 6, 2010 - 4:35PM

    really disappointed after reading this conspiracy theory. The General has single handedly convicted the US of yet another conspiracy against the ‘Islamic world’. While little or no proof is provided.

    If people with his understanding of the whole issue are still our main decision makers, then that makes an even stronger case for Mr. Assange to continue his crusade, as it seems to be the only way to ensure incompetence does not get overlooked due to ‘National/Security interests’.Recommend

  • G.Khan
    Dec 7, 2010 - 3:11AM

    That was my opinion from the day one. America is part of the Wilileaks project. Numurous gains from these leaks for Ameirica. They want this whole region to become a battle field for which they themselves came into Afghanistan and failed. By Wikileaks they want to develop such a Mistrust between countries , within countries, between opposition and Rulingparty and various groups of the society to make them go against each other. People must keep calm and do not take it seriously at all. Thats the answer and that will disappoint them a lot.Recommend

  • Dec 7, 2010 - 4:48AM

    Well done General- but you should have tried to do better as we are sick of all these old lame excuses of “conspiracy”. At least come up with a better “lame excuse”.Recommend

  • sam
    Dec 8, 2010 - 6:01AM

    i think that most of this article is based on facts and depth , while few is making most of the readers complain ..Recommend

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