Pakistan’s sacrifices not recognized
The US-NATO-CIA-Afghan regime-India have been continually casting aspersions on the ISI that it is ‘intimately involved’ with the insurgency in Afghanistan and is secretly aiding Afghan Taliban. They allege that but for ISI’s support; the Taliban couldn’t have snatched the initiative from them and forced them to withdraw. Although the allegation is baseless and unsubstantiated, for argument sake if it is hypothesized that the ISI is involved, what is so odd about it and why should it surprise NATO or the US? Why should it cause so much distress since all the intelligence agencies of strategic partners housed in Kabul are exactly involved in same kind of racket against Pakistan since 2002? While Afghan Taliban have a superior cause of freeing their homeland from the clutches of invaders, the US have no moral and legal justification to invade, destroy and occupy a sovereign country.
The US and its allies are playing a double game with Pakistan which they all declare as their strategic ally. While claiming to be friends fighting a common war with common objective of defeating terrorism, they have been repeatedly stabbing Pakistan to make it powerless. While the US has forbidden Pakistan to maintain any sort of contact with Afghan and Pakistani Taliban, it is itself striving hard to make Afghan Taliban agree to talk. To this end, Washington agreed in 2011 to release high profile five Taliban leaders detained in Guantanamo Bay since 2002 in return for release of an American soldier and opening of a Taliban political office in Doha. Had the US not backtracked from its commitment by adding new conditions, Doha initiative would have made good progress by now. The US has asked Afghan regime, India, Germany, Turkey, UAE, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, UK and France to convince the Taliban to renew talks stalled in March 2012.
The US forgets that it forced Pakistan to betray its friendly Muslim neighbor by ditching it and becoming a coalition member of aggressors. It is ISAF and ANA that are fighting the Taliban since October 2001, while Pak Army is fighting CIA-RAW created TTP in the northwest. The latter is funded, trained, equipped and employed by CIA, RAW, Mossad and RAAM. Pakistan has sufficient evidence to prove involvement of foreign agencies in FATA, Swat, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Balochistan and Karachi. Up stuck from their main bases in Swat, Bajaur and South Waziristan in 2009, the militants couldn’t have put up such determined fights elsewhere without intimate support of foreign agencies. Maulana Fazlullah and Maulvi Faqir led runaway militants have been accommodated in Kunar and Nuristan provinces, the two safe havens for these militants. They have been given the status of refugees and provided houses and rations. They receive funds, training and motivational talks by CIA, RAW, RAAM and instigated to launch cross border attacks and add to the problems of Pakistan. These absconders are involved in cross border attacks in Mehmand, Bajaur, Dir and Chitral since 2011. Pakistan also has enough proofs of involvement of CIA, RAW, MI-6, RAAM and Blackwater in Balochistan. These agencies are deeply involved in fomenting Baloch insurgency which has now got converted into a separatist movement. All the separatist Baloch leaders like Brahamdagh Bugti, Harbyar Marri, Daood Suleiman and Dr Wahid Baloch are residing abroad duly patronized by agencies inimical to Pakistan. BLA, BRA, BLUF are creations of these agencies. Till 2011, Brahamdagh was residing in Kandahar supervising insurgency in Balochistan and is now doing the same from Geneva. These banned groups have been blowing up gas pipelines, electric grid stations, pylons, railway lines and attacking security check posts, military convoys, passenger trains and buses. They are involved in kidnappings for ransom and target killings. Non-locals particularly Punjabis and pro-government elements are their favorite targets. Frontier Corps and Frontier Constabulary responsible for maintaining law and order are targeted by these banned terrorist groups. All attacks on security forces are proudly claimed by BLA or BRA. Retaliatory actions by law enforcers’ are vociferously censured by the US, West, India, NGOs, HRW and section of local media.
Foreign funded Lashkar-e-Jhangvi aligned with TTP and al-Qaeda is involved in stoking sectarian war. RAW has a hand in Gilgit-Baltistan sectarian tensions as well. RAW and CIA along with militant wings of three ruling political parties are also actively involved in Karachi where the heinous practice of target killings is going on for the last five years. Purpose is to bring the economic activity in the economic hub center to a complete standstill.
Despite having learnt that the US was insincere and duplicitous and was heavily leaning towards India, Pakistan has been providing full support to it. It had placed its seaport, airports, four airbases and supply routes at the disposal of ISAF without charging any fee. Pak security forces are fighting the US dictated global war on terror against their own people relentlessly. Pakistan has offered numerous sacrifices to fight the menace of war. It suffered exceptionally serious losses in terms of human resource victims, devastation of valuable property, impulsive political instability, bursting social disorder, divisive mindset, and poor law and order situation leading to creation of threatening environment filled with sense of fear and uncertainty in the country.
More than 40,000 innocent people lost their lives, while many were incapacitated or rendered disabled. Security forces of Pakistan were made the direct target of terrorism and their capacity to prevail upon the militants was frequently challenged by its own citizens. Nearly 5000 fatalities and 15000 injuries sustained by security forces is a clear proof that Pakistan played its part with honesty and sincerity. This high figure of casualties surpasses combine figure of ISAF comprising 48 countries. As against paltry sum of $10 billion received from USA in the last ten years, Pakistan lost $70 billion. Its economy has become bankrupt while social trauma is incalculable. Instead of recognizing Pakistan’s sacrifices and sufferings it underwent and eulogizing the constructive role it played in trying to cleanse the ugly mess created by the sponsors of war, Pakistan has been maligned, distrusted and given a raw deal.
Despite all this Pakistan remained committed to the cause of fighting the menace of terrorism and participated actively in war on terror to eliminate the terrorists. Pak Army has continued to shed blood in the face of vile propaganda by US print and electronic media. But for the shocking events in 2011, Pakistan would have continued to do more without a whimper. Revelations which came to light after the arrest of double murderer CIA agent Raymond Davis were enough to jolt the security apparatus. Had he been allowed to be grilled by ISI, he would have exposed the whole game plan of CIA, which has created a vast network in Pakistan major urban centres. Our former Ambassador in Washington Hussein Haqqani and Interior Minister Malik facilitated the establishment of CIA network and Blackwater.
These shady outfits instead of hunting the terrorists directed all their energies towards weakening and discrediting Pak Army and ISI and trying to achieve the US principal goal of extracting the nuclear teeth of Pakistan and thus making it a docile state at the mercy of India. Primary purpose of conducting stealth attack in Abbottabad on 2 May 2011 was to damage the high reputation of Pak Army/ISI and to create misgivings between the government and the Army.
The US callously betrayed Pakistan and then remorselessly rejoiced the event by demeaning Pakistan. It rubbed salt in the wounds of Pakistan by unleashing a despicable propaganda soon after the attack and became more aggressive. Drone war was further intensified. It forgot that if the Army/ISI had a hand in hiding Osama Bin Laden, why did they arrest all the wanted al-Qaeda high-value leaders with head money and promptly handed them over to USA. If today al-Qaeda has become a non-entity in Afghanistan, the entire credit goes to Pak Army/ISI and none else. Having given a crippling blow to the fighting ability of al-Qaeda, it was inane to keep its chief in such a prominent place, with head money of $25 million, non-operational since December 2001 and a liability.
As if 2 May stab was not enough, the US knifed Pakistan again on 26 November. After slaughtering 24 Pak soldiers in Mehmand Agency, it behaved as if nothing unusual had happened. It didn’t give an assurance that Pakistan’s sovereignty will not be violated again and is not ready to cease drone attacks. Unmindful about Pakistan’s sufferings and security concerns, it only wants Pakistan to continue fighting the war unremittingly and to keep American interests supreme. It is desperate to quit Afghanistan but doesn’t want Pakistan to wind up the war. With such crass and unjust attitude, and showing disregard to Pakistan’s sacrifices, there is little hope for Pak-US business getting back to usual.
The writer is a retired Brig and a defence analyst. Email: email@example.com