You Asked For It

By Brig®Mehboob Qadir G

Pakistan must be a unique country where her Defense Minister launches repeated malicious attacks on his own armed forces, keeps meaningfully quiet when they come under sizzling smear assault from a tainted part of media and acts deaf  on a written defamation complaint by the country’s premier intelligence agency, again, under his care. This is most likely a minister who cannot, perhaps, tell  Gyari from Trunk Bazar Sialkot. If you recollect Gyari is the site where 140 soldiers and officers were buried  alive to their eternal cold death under 70 feet of  snowy avalanche in Gilgit-Baltistan. What has the Defense Ministry  done for the families of Gyari soldiers,those 21 beheaded by TTP butchers in FATA  and thousands of other maimed and disabled soldiers  whose limbs were blown up by terrorist mines, shot through by TTP snipers  and bitten black by frost 40 degrees below freezing point at Siachen. All those precious lives and many more flowers of our youth uselessly lost to defend men like that and the rest of the scruffy clique. Ask them if there is a single such battle casualty from these fellows’ relatives, sons or daughters? Yet they had the temerity to label our superhuman sacrifices as paid for. I am sure not. It must be understood that guts and red blood  are needed to face the business end of the gun and fire a shot in anger.To do that one has to come from a line of  respected and valiant ancestors and not wool collecting petty merchants from the  foothill sheep markets.

  What happened to the written representation, we would come to that a little later. Meanwhile his master and his pet poodles rushed post haste to show solidarity with those who are drilling big holes right into the roots of the state and jeopardizing the country’s survival, but comprehensively failed to visit a single soldier’s family killed fighting against terrorists or frozen to death defending Siachen. For these men, soldiers and officers are disposable but a dubious media anchor is indispensible for projection of the lightweights of the like.This coalition of the devious is not going to last long. They will expedite their own demise, count down seems to have begun.

Some of the more vociferous federal and provincial ministers are busy taking out their personal bile against the armed forces. One of them was Managing Director PTV when his ringmaster was unseated in 1999.This pathetic jelly bean was unfortunately given a specially rough treatment at that time, which he does not seem to have overcome yet. More importantly like his master he too refuses to learn a lesson from history. As a matter of fact, this time around we have a particularly nasty pack of men from the sooty smithies of Lahore and  leather tanneries of  Sialkot,  together driving the country towards disaster. These men appear Jurassic; long noses and no brains. Spiteful men with large egos can bring about quite a catastrophe.

We have peculiar national complexes which continue to afflict us, causing irrational, inexplicable and nearly mad reactions. To begin with we are homophobic. Not only that, our own shadow scares us; more and more as one climbs up the power staircase. The result is chronic insecurity, startled reactions and perpetual crisis of trust besides cold sweats. That is why at the highest level of state power in our country, the political ring looks more like a vipers’ pit rather than a reassuring company of men of substance. That is also the reason why we have some of the most erratic and delusionary men leading us to the precipice of guaranteed destruction. We suffer from a strange predisposition for self derision and revulsion to respect. Indeed a sure sign of very low self esteem and mental deficiency.As a society we have lost the capacity to accept and gracefully absorb courtesy and respect extended to us. The reason is that these virtues of civilized people are considered as signs of weakness and vulnerability in our crass and brutalized society. Instinctively we try to detect trick and deceit if courtesy is shown towards us and are at a loss when we find none. Good nature and good manners are obsolete where as self respect is replaced by stark arrogance. Like the caged wolves we tend to pounce ferociously upon every hand extended and bite whatever moves. We have since long blurred distinction between fair possession and greed; privilege of power and corresponding obligation of duty. Finally, there is a devastating disconnect between acts of commission and onus of responsibility of the consequences. No one seems accountable for anything here. Malice, bile, urge to demolish the adversary brick and mortar and gross disregard to basic demands of law and decency have seeped deep into our psyche.

Thoroughly soaked in our steamy national traits and a few more of their own brands, we have a flight of scavengers at the state’s helm passing as our national executive. This time they also have a dirty-tricks media pack to help them outshout others. This pack is believed to be fed and funded from abroad and finds the leadership naïve enough to swallow the bait. It is an alliance of the phony and an association of assured destruction. The way it launched media trial of the country’s premier intelligence agency on an engineered shooting of its pampered  anchor while the stunned government and shrunken PEMRA kept not only regrettably quiet but also ,perhaps, were  relishing the unseemly brawl, is despicable.

 Pakistan Army and ISI‘s response was dignified just as these shriveled men stooped to record low in their depravity. The problem is that quiet dignity when pushed to the wall hits back with fearsome determination and a grave sense of purpose against the whole lot of perpetrators. To add insult to injury our comatose PEMRA in league with the coterie had not only sent a lukewarm notice to the pompous TV channel but never seriously considered the matter in their official meeting the next day. This collusion has not gone unnoticed. Play any tricks and fake any concern but the soldier is not going to be deceived this time. The attempt appears to test the patience of the Armed forces a degree more or may be to push them a little farther. A very dangerous game,if I may venture to advise.

Predicament with the present dispensation is manifold and tragically flawed. Mr. Nawaz Sharif  and his inner circle have not been able to grow out of their persistent loathing of the very Army which was responsible, in the first place, to thrust them into politics.If left alone he could have made a famously successful iron baron .Somehow he immediately tends to go on to  confront competing state institutions and thus plays havoc with the country every time he comes into power. Please put your ear to the ground and listen to the deep rumblings forewarning of a coming earthquake. If not, then cup your palm to your ear and listen to the ominous hum in the ranks. It is one of the most dangerous sounds in the world, said Lord Halifax. There is an urgent need for sanity and careful reflection to avert a possible repeat debacle . However the real difficulty is with their defective software which has already ordered self destruct command. The romance is over.

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