Is America really our Enemy No 1?

Published: June 4, 2011
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The writer is consulting editor,
The Friday Times

The writer is consulting editor, The Friday Times

Six months ago, an extraordinary news report was published by Dawn, which recounted the contents of a military briefing given to journalists on November 30, 2010. A top Pakistani military official stated that Pakistan “has transited from the ‘most sanctioned ally’ to the ‘most bullied ally’” of the US. Essentially an off-the-record briefing, the contents were leaked to the public wherein the army leadership declared that the US had a “transactional” relationship with Pakistan. That the US was “interested in perpetuating a state of ‘controlled chaos’ in Pakistan”; and the “real aim of US strategy is to denuclearise Pakistan.”

Paranoia about the US runs deep into the Pakistani psyche now. Other than the reticent generals, it is the vocal media men who have now made anti-Americanism an article of faith of Pakistani patriotism.

The recently published WikiLeaks cable of May 2008 reveals that many of Pakistan’s National Defence University (NDU) students and instructors “have an anti-American bias”. In the cable, former US ambassador Anne Patterson reported on US Army Colonel Michael Schleicher’s study period at the NDU, where he attended the Senior Course along with 110 Pakistani officers. Schleicher estimated that a third of the class was religiously devout, a third moderate and less than a third overtly secular. He also said that pedagogy at the NDU represented misperceptions about US policy and culture. A guest speaker (a general) held that “the US National Security Agency actively trains correspondents for media organisations”.

At the time this cable was released in Pakistan, Pakistan’s ambassador to the US, Husain Haqqani, also lectured at the NDU, where he tried to argue that it is “perfectly possible for two nations to have an alliance but not have a total convergence of interests. For example, just as Pakistan’s views about India are not shared by the US, America’s views about Iran are not shared by Pakistan.”

After a long spiel on reasoned view of foreign policy, Haqqani asks, “What is the principal national security threat to Pakistan?” The audience is invited to vote by raising hands for categories, ‘from within’, ‘from India’ and ‘from the US’. Not surprisingly, a majority of hands were raised for the US.

Perhaps the best summation of the syndrome comes in Haqqani’s own words: “If [the biggest threat to Pakistan’s security] really comes from the US, then we’ve already lost, ladies and gentlemen, because you can’t beat the US in a military confrontation and that is the reality which we have to accept, whatever our emotions. Because, let us be honest, we do not have the means to take on the one military power in the world that spends more on defence technology than the next 20 nations in the world. So, that is where I think we sometimes end up having what I call ‘emotional discussion’. I see it on Pakistani television all the time.”

A calm Haqqani tries to reason with martial minds: “How can we be integrated into the global economy if we are not part of the international economic system which, right now, whether we like it or not, is led by a single country. A reality based foreign policy for Pakistan will have to integrate [Pakistan] into the global economy. [The policy] will have to take into account Pakistan’s concerns emanating from the terrorist threat within the country.”

Perhaps this is where the greatest of our challenges resides. The enemy is somewhere within, deep into the Pakistani psyche — an inheritor of the ‘invasion-threat.’ In a century that defines power in terms of economic and technological advantages, our national ideology leads us to somewhat simplistic thinking. We still only celebrate Turko-Afghan Muslim invaders of the subcontinent and resent the arrival of the European colonialist in the garb of traders. But the world has moved beyond Ghauri and Lord Clive. The religion-based ideology designed to forge national unity might end up being our undoing, coupled with an unwillingness to embrace the realities of the contemporary world. In any case, how can we explain how an institution continues to be the largest recipient of US assistance and its ally for decades; and apparently resents it too?

Published in The Express Tribune, June 4th, 2011.

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Reader Comments (43)

  • faraz
    Jun 4, 2011 - 1:35AM

    What else can you expect from people who are fed with absurd myths about the imaginary glorious past? What we want to achieve actually never existed. Who in this globalised world would look towards Ghauri, Ghaznavi and Abdali as his role models? The entire concept of Islamic state is self contradictory. There is no concept of state in Islam. Islam transcends across all geographic borders, races and identities. Islam discourages nationalism. Such systems cannot survive for long; the ultimately implode. But why should people care about the country, God won’t ask about Pakistan on the day of judgment. God has asked people to take care of people in the neighbourhood, not the entire Pakistan! Recommend

  • Tasawar ul Karim Baig
    Jun 4, 2011 - 1:47AM

    I agree with the analogy presented Rumi. This is bitter truth that we always put emtions before our intellect, perhaps this is way, we hurt too much in both ways. In addition to that, as nation we expect more as well. But here big question in my mind as many pakistani and people who care about country, beside all these discourse and understanding of the situation, WHY we do the same blunders, which lead us to isolation and disgrace across the globe.Recommend

  • fahim
    Jun 4, 2011 - 2:13AM

    “We still only celebrate Turko-Afghan Muslim invaders of the subcontinent” rightly put, thats what we are and that mindset is deep in our genes, our social values, our ethics, our national psyche. We believe in invading other countries like India and Afghanistan, and following Newton’s Law, expect other countries like India/US/Israel/Afghans to invade us, thereby living in a constant battle mode. We are living in our 1500 year old obsolete mindset, carefully woven by our ISI/Military to enjoy their own interests. Think deeply and you will clearly see the internal game plan. Recommend

  • Jun 4, 2011 - 2:34AM

    Pakistan is being pushed on the verge of collapse by the imperial powers of the World and our military generals as well as politicians are consciously or unconsciously working for the accomplishment of American’s agenda which predicts Yugoslavia-like fate for Pakistan.
    If we look a report released by the CIA in December 2000, which stated that by 2015Pakistan will be more fractious, isolated, and dependent on international financial assistance.” In a climate of continuing domestic turmoil, the central government’s control probably will be reduced to the Punjabi heartland and the economic hub of Karachi.
    In January of 2009, a Pentagon report analyzing geopolitical trends of significance to the US military over the next 25 years, reported that Pakistan could face a “rapid and sudden” collapse.
    We cannot fight against America, we cannot live without America and on the other hands extremists want to see the Pakistan’s state fall into pieces so that they could control over the atomic weapons or tighten their grips over Pakistan.
    My simple question is that either a weaker Pakistan is in favour of the America and India or a stronger Pakistan? My answer is stronger Pakistan especially economically is a guarantee for the stability of not only South Asia but also for the World. Recommend

  • Malik Rashid
    Jun 4, 2011 - 3:48AM

    Raza Rumi
    A friend of mine often comments; ‘If the Brits had not come to India, I would be herding goats, barefoot’. Education has been sacrificed for a fascistic state. Militarism, religion and patriotism has been combined into a dead-end ideology to straitjacket the mind of citizens. It works fine for the ruling mafia. Democracy started after Pakistan’s military establishment agreed to it when charge of terrorism was read to them by USA. But they killed Benazeer and they have gradually tightened their grip over parliament. Taseer was murdered and change recommended to blasphemy law was rescinded. Shahbaz Bhatti was murdered and the parliament was coerced into complete subjugation. Pakistan’s Parliament sat down to review complicity and failure of the security organizations but they passed resolution to break up with USA.
    Fascism rules here. State has become so redundant in matters of social welfare – health, education, hunger, poverty etc. that the option of statelessness may not be any worse.
    Thanks for speaking out. Feels like talking to a wall though. Peace. Recommend

  • Nirvan
    Jun 4, 2011 - 3:49AM

    Well said, Mr. Haqqani.
    The demons are in our heads, and Pakistanis’ have to search within and leave the emotional, historical, religious baggage behind.
    On a different note do we want this story below to repeat itself in radicalized Pakistan besides a daily diet of suicide or homicidal bombings.
    Ukrainian officials have slammed media claims that a teenage beauty queen was stoned to death by three Muslim suspects who alleged the 19-year-old violated Sharia law by participating in pageants.

    As CBS reports, the body of Katya Koren was found in a forest near her home in the Crimea region of Ukraine one week after her disappearance. Her battered body had been partially buried.

    Initial media reports said three Muslim youths were responsible for the murder, claiming Koren’s death had been justified under Islam, the Daily Mail is reporting. One of the three suspects, named as 16-year-old Bihal Gaziev, was quoted as telling police that Katya had “violated the laws of Sharia,” and that he has no regrets about her death.Recommend

  • Masood Zaidi
    Jun 4, 2011 - 5:34AM

    ”The enemy is somewhere within, deep into the Pakistani psyche — an inheritor of the ‘invasion-threat.’’ Excellent writeup,Raza.Recommend

  • mahmood
    Jun 4, 2011 - 5:40AM

    I wonder how the American’s view Pakistan? How would you view an ally that behind the door requested drone attacks while publicly denouncing them? How would you view an ally that publicly promoted the war on terror why making deals with militants who were attacking you? How would you feel when the leader of the organization that attacked you and started this war was found hiding in the shadows of a Military Academy? Recommend

  • Jun 4, 2011 - 6:04AM

    Israel, not Pakistan, is the largest recipient of US assistance. Pakistanis have good reason to be skeptical about the US and its intentions as long as the Neocons are running the show. Many have said they want control of Pakistan’s nukes, and this is just one example:

    “Michael O’Hanlon of the Brookings Institution, foresee Pakistan’s collapse and propose two fantastic methods of direct military intervention to secure the country’s nuclear arsenal, which should ideally be shipped to “someplace like ‘New Mexico'” (“Pakistan’s Collapse, Our Problem,” New York Times, November 18, 2007).Recommend

  • bilawal
    Jun 4, 2011 - 6:05AM

    Interesting Perspective Rumi saheb, a few days ago I read another article which mentioned our agencies responsible for shaping the minds of the public in favor or against America and India, blaming them for attacks like PNS Mehran and hiding their own failure in previously supporting the taliban,who have now gone out of hand. I just can’t see the reason and the timing for articles like these which further leave the public confused like an ostrich, all ready to run for their lives…and not look behind. Either this is another American Propaganda ? An anti-taliban sentiment creation ? A pro-American mindset ? Because in the long run, America does eye Pakistan as a threat…Pakistan does not trust the American motives but gladly accepts the aid that we receive; which would go back to the IMF if we closely monitor the whole cycle and the public still says “Burn America burn”. This leaves our fragile minds cracking , as we don’t know who to trust. A confused Pakistani.Recommend

  • Jun 4, 2011 - 6:23AM

    Soon the world will be Pakistans enemy why? because Pakistanis are not taking responsibility for themselves or their nation :(Recommend

  • PKP
    Jun 4, 2011 - 7:37AM

    wow! what an article!Recommend

  • Jun 4, 2011 - 9:15AM

    Thank God India is not enemy No1 though the people have still not identified the real enemy . Authority and Responsibility are two sides of a coin . Who has had the authority in Pakistan for the last 50 odd yrs since Ayub Khan came to power ? If you have the guts to ask that question then you know the answer. Recommend

  • [email protected]
    Jun 4, 2011 - 10:28AM

    Raza Sahab

    You are one of the brave..but why not write a piece and tell the truth about the ancestry of many pakistanis. That ghauri & co. were plunderers who looted our forefathers, that raped,persecuted and forcibly converted our ancestors.That many hindu kings including prithviraj chauhan and rana pratap were warriors fighting the invaders…..why why no one dares to say that….who eventually lost to the brutal islamic invasion. That seed of misperception and misinformation needs to be weeded out, else the future is bleak. May god protect you from your own…Recommend

  • Bilafond
    Jun 4, 2011 - 11:47AM

    Mr Haqqani the US Ambassador of PAKISTAN in USA says ” “If [the biggest threat to Pakistan’s security] really comes from the US, then we’ve already lost, ladies and gentlemen, because you can’t beat the US in a military confrontation and that is the reality which we have to accept, whatever our emotions.”” —- I want to tell without too much of ANGREZEE, No we will die protecting Pakistan and that is NOT Loosing. We will improvise, that’s it.Recommend

  • Jun 4, 2011 - 11:50AM

    I hope one day all our journalist friends can learn to read history beyond 1 year. It is amazing how many examples you can take out from history which will explain our love for money and the race to bottom by all dying empire’s allies. Till then keep hurling unscientific polls, think tank propagandas, secret organization policies as evidence to condition our minds to be subservient to the Imperial masters. Sheeples rock on.Recommend

  • ani
    Jun 4, 2011 - 11:51AM

    Are you kidding?
    How can US replace India as Number 1 enemy? This is a plot by RAW men in stars wars uniform. They are the ones indoctrinating everyone in hating US more than India.

    US gives aid and ammunition. Take from US, laugh at US, and hate US. India should consider this a as a great sign of accomodation – hate it less you see. Now in return, give Siachen, Kashmir and whatever else. Otherwise, replace US with India. Recommend

  • fus
    Jun 4, 2011 - 11:58AM

    True…we don’t want to face the demons within our society, just blame US, INDIA and Israel…easy way out. We don’t talk about the game Iran and Saudia Arabia is playing with us…keep on blaming US.Recommend

  • ArifQ
    Jun 4, 2011 - 12:55PM

    “Nothing is easier than self-deceit. For what each man wishes, that he also believes to be true.” – Demosthenes

    Self deceit is an example of a self-destruction mechanism that most people are unaware of. This mechanism kills you internally–in your morale, in your will, in your effort. Self-deceit, like a strong wind against you, delays desirable results. It may seem funny, but it’s like your left fist punching your face as the right one constructs it. While it may be self-inflicted, others acquire self-deceit through circumstances, peers and parents, in Pakistan case through social/religious indoctrination. It’s only when you become aware of it that you can gain control over it.Recommend

  • Fayez Noor
    Jun 4, 2011 - 1:00PM

    i dont think USA is our enemy number one or they pose any threat to nukes but they are not friends either. they are here for their interest Recommend

  • kanishka
    Jun 4, 2011 - 1:03PM

    ultimate…. if people like haqqani are teaching at NDU and Rumi’s writing about it, then pak’s future is bright… Seeing Haqqani on CNN with Fareed and hearing him got me dissapointed thinking “here goes the cliched pakistani”, but if he has such views as espoused in this article then he carries promise…

    I just hope for once if and if only a religion could stop judging PEOPLE on what they worship, the whole world could be a much better place.. the root cause of terros is this very JUDGEMENTRecommend

  • narayana murthy
    Jun 4, 2011 - 1:07PM

    I really pray that USA continue to be the Enemy no.1.

    Don’t mistake me. I just hope that, that way India is relegated to no.2.

    The perception of the people when it comes to the complex relationship between USA, Al Qaeda, ISI, Army, India, Taliban and LET…lines get murkier and people get mixed up.

    America is an enemy of the Qaeda and a friend of army. However, America is believed to be sponsoring TTP and bullying the army. India is funding TTP, which in the end want to destroy India. LET was India centric, now is believed to be a global network, against USA too. Army and ISI want to destabilize India through these groups, yet they must kill these groups who are believed to be anti-army. In other words, LET is good for army, TTP is bad for army. However, LET and TTP and other Taliban groups are believed to be working together. Army welcomes USA and hates USA and cannot eliminate TTP without their drones.

    The only solution is to say “if you do not respect the law of the land, you are an enemy”. “if you have a gun, if you sympathize with these groups, if you provide money to these groups, you’re an enemy”.

    A very simple solution, but the army seems incapable of adapting.Recommend

  • narayana murthy
    Jun 4, 2011 - 1:09PM

    @Fayez.

    You are right Fayez. In international diplomacy, there are no enemies or friends. There are only interests.

    However, harboring the people who want to destroy America is Pakistan’s fault and USA will do everything in their power to eliminate these groups. The best for Pakistan is to eliminate these people themselves. The quicker the better. That way, less loss to your country and the war can end much faster.Recommend

  • Abbas
    Jun 4, 2011 - 1:18PM

    Fair observation Raza and yes the threat is from inside. Why would US or any other coutry would invade Pakistan. We are not Iraq or any ME country with rich oil / natural resources. Though I agree with you to a great extent but still there are certain things which US does are weired and strange. One example is recent Wikileaks news,

    1) Why does US embasador has to write back home who is the most suitable candidate for Prime Ministers who would straight away obey US commands.

    2) US drones would come to Pakistan area and hit the targets which more often kills local villagers (yes a few terrorist are also killed no one denying that) which creates anti american sentinments and anti Pakistani too as the govt/army is letting it happen. However, no such operation ever done with in Afghanistan border though entire Afghan Taliban operates there. The recent incident of 300 – 500 militants entering from Afghanistan and targeting Pakistan securiy forces check post. This is a clear evidence that they live on both sides of borders.

    3) US / Afghanistan does not let Pakistan put fences on border, WHY is that???? This will reduce unathorised cross border movement but they did not let Pakistan do when Musharaf govt wanted it.

    4) As per recent news they are having negotiations with Taliban at a very high level and there is no problem with that but when Pakistan do the same (like the one happened before Swat operation and few others during Musharaf time) US had problems. So they want to bring Afghanis on table but let Pakistanis fight to each other.

    5) The difference between US approach towards India and Pakistan in terms of economic reforms. You can always argue its a bigger market but come on even Pakistan population is among top 10 in the world and its reasonably sized. They would prefer us living on Aid than give additional benefits for trade, so that we always remain dependent.

    People in Pakistan just can not digest the above and many such other questions. Either US stop claiming that they care about the entire world and all the nations OR declare that thet Rule the entire world and being Big Boss they would do what ever they think is best for them. Recommend

  • Usama Zafar
    Jun 4, 2011 - 2:09PM

    @Fayez Noor:
    Well thats what diplomatic relations are all about. There are no permanent friends or enemies, there are permanent interests!!Recommend

  • parvez
    Jun 4, 2011 - 2:38PM

    Great article.
    What I understand is that sooner rather than later the minds that are and will be responsible for our destiny will have (possibly they already do) a blinkered, narrow, bigoted view of affairs that will (possibly already has) sink this country.Recommend

  • Rahul Singh
    Jun 4, 2011 - 3:09PM

    The celebration of turk-afghan invasion is a result of their ignorance of history. The day they will understand that their forefathers were Hindus who were forcefully converted to Muslims, their so called pride will turn into horror.Recommend

  • Jun 4, 2011 - 3:18PM

    Dont really think so, with India getting fishy on the borders, I think we ll be back to square one very soon!
    US of America is a superpower, therefore exudes an ego, operates for self-interests & hence working at her best on an exit from Afghanistan with pride (after an apparently failed war). The post-OBL fiasco is transitory and part of a strategy that works for their interests but not ours, naturally leading to a rise in anti-US sentiments.

    Imperative is US pro-war, aggressive foreign policy, which is neither in the interest of her own people, is criticized by Americans themselves and it has turned the world into a place more dangerous than ever.

    Also, with inept, corrupt, self-obsessed ruling elite like ours- who need enemies! Recommend

  • FactCheck
    Jun 4, 2011 - 4:55PM

    @Fatima:

    Fatima,

    Let me make this very simple to understand. You, Pakistani’s are not working in your own interest and want the US and everyone else to work for your interests.

    Think about it a moment ask yourself; why would you expect someone else to work for your interests while you don’t show one iota of evidence, you are working for your own interests.

    Like a wise man once to have been said; “you cannot help someone that doesn’t want to help themselves”. Recommend

  • Khurram
    Jun 4, 2011 - 7:38PM

    The Pakistani nation has gone nuts to the extent that it is now a serious provider of comedy worldwide!!! And of course hail the new poster boy of this psychotic nation– Imran Khan!Recommend

  • JNC
    Jun 4, 2011 - 7:48PM

    @Bilafond: We never showed so much conviction with all the wars we had with India which we lost. Dreams are not real… we need to wake up to the reality. How about fighting the Taliban who are the real enemies of Pakistan but they enjoy so much support in this country.Recommend

  • Adil
    Jun 5, 2011 - 12:58AM

    @Rahul Singh:

    The celebration of turk-afghan invasion is a result of their ignorance of history. The day they will understand that their forefathers were Hindus who were forcefully converted to Muslims, their so called pride will turn into horror.

    And whats ur source to back such claims? Don’t tell me you got it from Faith Freedom,Islam Watch,Jihad Watch or some RSS affiliated web(of lies)site.

    If the theory of forced conversion was really true then how come majority of people in Indo-Pak Subcontinent (or South Asia) continue to follow Hinduism as their religion till date? Recommend

  • Jun 5, 2011 - 1:05AM

    Thank you Raza Rumi for excellent logical article.
    ‘But People like Haqqani, or others represent some vested interest group and thus can not be termed as impartial scholars. I can not say comparing India, and Afghanistan weather America can be termed as Enemy no 1. But USA is trying to convert the world to safeguard its economic interests and now naturally with teaming up with India. On the basis of that I can say Yes USA is our enemy No 1 because it has the power and will to use our human and other resources for his economic prosperity.
    I would not agree with Mr Haqqanis Stupid approach. I do not think we are in a position to fight with USA. But we are in a position to safeguard our interests progressively provided we have the will. If today we will start working on expanding trade with Iran, Afghanistan, Russia, China and other Regions we will not be dependent on USA. Task is not difficult and has high returns.
    Look at tashkent Uzbekistan. It was the only country in the world which kicked out the American forces with a 90 days notice. Because tashkent and uzbekistan was not dependent on USA.Recommend

  • Nosheen
    Jun 5, 2011 - 1:39AM

    Well, this is in response to the first comment… to the knowledge of readers, Islam gives universal message of morality to the world by setting up an example of first Islamic Muslim State. This community was organized along the teachings of Allah to show the world how a peaceful life can be led on earth. It was to give a universal message to the entire humanity that such a way of life is possible. This possibility was demonstrated with the establishment of the Muslim State through the efforts of human beings. So the concept of Islamic State is not contradictory. A universal message is communicated to entire humanity through the example of Islamic State. Islam may be against nationalism… i have not yet investigated into the matter. Yet, what i have said above is something about which i am certain as i am not speaking it out of my personal flawed knowledge of Islam and i am investigating into what Islam actually says. In the last two years i have heard a lot of people speaking a lot about what Islam says and i am not surprised to know that they have never tried to open The Book of Quran themselves. It’s indeed an irony. If one really wants to know the truth, he has to search it himself…even if it takes him his entire life to search it. If i want to learn Marxism, I should never go to moulvi sahab to learn it…similarly if i want to know about Islam it would not be a wise decision going to somebody who is biased against it… It’s simply for this reason that i have launched an independent inquiry into the matter. In case if somebody is not sure about what i have said about the matter is right, it’s maulana Modoodi’s Muqadimmah he should be reading. English version is available on the internet.Recommend

  • Amin Kalimuddin
    Jun 5, 2011 - 5:20AM

    Well, you can bash all you want, just remember the history Baber failed 16 times he succedded the 17th attempt. Muslims will rise in due time. US was never a friend, back stabing is a characterstick of these people. As for as Hindu’s are concerened they are no friends of Muslims.Recommend

  • Jun 5, 2011 - 2:51PM

    @bilawal: Trust yourself try IQBAL”Khudi ko kar buland itna ke har taqder se pehle
    Khuda bande se ye poche bata teri raza kia hai”Recommend

  • Jun 6, 2011 - 3:14AM

    1) The leading economy in the world is indebt to China ,to the tune of 1 trillion dollars.

    2) Over 200 banks have been shut down in the last two years.

    3) 44 million of it’s citizens are living below the poverty line.

    4) 47 million of its citizens are living on Food Stamps(SNAP).

    5) The debt ceiling of their government has ended and the government has to shut down.

    Briefly,the leading economy is near to a collapse.

    Now,what the give to Pakistan: According to the Pakistan Financial Survey 2011:

    1) Pakistan recieved 18 billions USD from them in the last decade as aid and assistance for being a ally in the so-called war on terror.

    2) Pakistan in return lost directly and indirectly 68 billion USD in the same period.

    3) Last year alone in 2010,Pakistan alone incurred a loss of 19 billion USD.

    4) In addition to the above revenue losses 35000 Pakistanis lost their lives and many Hundreds alone due to the Drone strikes.

    One doesnt need rocket science to figure out the above facts in this lopsided relationship..

    Apparently,it is more of a physcological dependence then real!Recommend

  • Jun 6, 2011 - 3:32AM

    Additionally,the so-called ally has been putting hurdles in letting Pakistan overcome its worst energy crisis…The Iran gas pipline and the proposed offer to provide cheaper rate electricty was blocked and to add further salt to the wound,they signed a civil nuclear agreement with India, declining to oblige Pakistant.Moreover, they also raised objection towards China’s plan to supply and build two additional nuclear reactor with the latest design.On the basis of not having taken permission from the SAG…Thanks to China’s courageous stand for going ahead to build, constraint to avoid international complications raised by the US,they opted with some modification and went ahead with the older 1970 design!

    Are we sure that we still cannot survive without such friends ?or are we better of dis-engaging from them ?Recommend

  • Babar
    Jun 6, 2011 - 2:04PM

    Pakistan is suffering a mass scale psychological disorder.Recommend

  • Tasadduq
    Jun 6, 2011 - 2:26PM

    Raza Saheb, incisive analysis as always. Just a few quick points: in the post 9/11 world, outside america, for american establishment anti-americanism has extended to encompass even slightly critical view of american policies, which is in line with the infamous neocon mantra: either you are friend or enemy. Whereas pro-americanism has reduced to mean total agreement only. Never mind the more forceful and bitter anti-war calls inside america, where people are guaranteed to speak up their mind under their constitution. Call this hubris, coercive tactics, whatever. In the views coming out of Pakistani liberals like you, one finds the same over-zealous and simplistic condemnation of own people and establishment’s policies as those of violent rightists, albeit for opposite motives–love vs. hate america, and without suggesting a practical way out. The problem with the likes of Mr. Haqqani is that with little diplomatic experience and perhaps much less patriotism out of his assimilation in the US culture, they don’t or can’t really calculate the probability of a military conflict with USA should the state come to negotiate hard on our national interests because everyone from his master to some of the most important in the stablishment apparently perceive their job security in that way. The public sentiment against USA or saying USA is number 1 enemy most definitely doesn’t mean that Pakistan should wage a war with America, but over the disconnect with public aspirations that exists in government’s handling of post 9/11 scenario. Wikileaks have sung a lot on that and will perhaps more. Much of turmoil that has emerged from calm days of 2001 to near civil-war of today in Pakistan has its roots in the war on terror. Can any one deny it? The cost of terror war has been extremely high, socially, economically, and politically. A direct war with America would have produced not very different outcome other than a more united nation. The way americans have invested in and conducted this war raises serious questions. How military means alone can eliminate a deeply ideological terrorist threat? Would they accept same collateral damage actually fueling insurgency in USA or in another state which would mean serious business with them? Why USA has made no effort to bring in a serious socio-economic change in the problematic regions, which could be accomplished at a fraction of cost of placing a 100k plus army and a self-sustaining intelligence network? Has the simple logic of sensless vicous cycle of killing been lost upon their leadership? The apparent fact is that Obama administration is either finding it expedient to use the war in the run up to elections to cover up its dismal economic performance before american public, something that Bush’s did, and/or it has a more sinister agenda for the region (read ‘oil’) which a plethora of american literature itself is suggesting. It’s perfectly legitimate for them to make their choices in view of what they are getting from us. Under our spotlight should be how come we can be so pessimists and defeatists that we lose the right of minding the way we are treated and of even vying for a fair bargain or of looking for the alternatives, which we should be making for our people. Just some random thoughts. I hope you won’t mind, my venerable friend.Recommend

  • Rao
    Jun 6, 2011 - 10:34PM

    These honest discussions by the young people of Pakistan is a good thing. It is a thin ray of hope. It is is for the young people of Pakistan to carefully read the history of India , Islam in India , history of Pakistan etc. and question everything.

    Keep aside iconization, glorification and lionizing few historical figures like Sir Said Ahmad Khan, Sir Iqbal and M.A.Jinnah too much. Pakistan does not belong to these men forever nor their ideas to be etched in stone. nor should be run according to their will. We are in the new era and not in the past.

    What a stupid thing it is to see overwhelming number of Pakistanis like to go back to the real and imagined mideval Islamic glories and other like to emerge into a mindset of modern, rational, friendly universal civillization.

    time has come to ditch this fixation with India, ‘the enemy’.. Wage a peace offensive against Hindusatn. It is the beginning. Pakistanis will prevail.

    These are few thoughts from one (that is me!) who witnessed as a youngster the partition of India. Hatred, conflicts and wars don’t benefit any one.

    Wa salaamRecommend

  • Rahul Singh
    Jun 7, 2011 - 11:20PM

    @Adil: Your ignorance is reflected in the state of your country. Your ostrich like behaviour has made your country a laughing stock in the whole world. Recommend

  • aqib
    Jun 8, 2011 - 10:42AM

    Actually people have forgotten their true religion Islam. Thats why others are able to raise their fingers not only to the people but to the whole religion. This is really shameful and it was due to happen as mentioned by Prophet(P.B.U.H). We must hope for the best because if you believe that you are on the right path following true teachings of Islam and if you are then soon the day will come that people will not accuse you rather they will also not fear you but they will hold your hands and obey you because of your kindness and truthfulness as this is what our religion Islam tell us. Do not see the religion by its people but see and read the teachings what that religion gives. My point is that I know Islam the only true religion in the whole universe and one day all will find it out.Recommend

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