Pakistan editorial: Gov’t needs to get a spine and stand up to U.S. and NATO warlords
The following editorial is from The Frontier Post, Peshawar, Pakistan.
Take it seriously
© The Frontier Post
December 22, 2010
Although it is expecting too much from an Islamabad establishment exposed unpalatably by WikiLeaks to be too ingratiated, too obligated and too servile to American lords, it must take very seriously the U.S. contemplated plans of ground attacks in Pakistan, as reported by the American media. It would be sheer foolishness to shrug off the reports as a device to bully Pakistan to extend its anti-militancy military campaign to North Waziristan or to sound out public opinion on this score.
Recall the U.S. Vietnam war fiasco. As their war went terribly wrong irreversibly, frustrated American military commanders and their political bosses untenably took refuge in a wholly self-assumed bogie that the problem was not Vietnam but Cambodia and Laos. The two tiny states they accused of providing transit corridors for arms supplies to the Vietnamese resistance Viet Cong guerrillas and harbouring their sanctuaries to which they claimed guerilla fighters escaped when pushed into a tight spot by the American army and its ally South Vietnamese security forces. On this pretext, they pulverised both the poor South East Asian states, first with clandestine heavy air bombardments for months and then overtly with deadly ground raids as well. Both vehemently protested they were irrationally being made to pay the price for America’s reverses in Vietnam, but had no listeners. And when the American army pulled out of South Vietnam in humiliation and defeat, it left parts of Cambodia and Laos in as much destruction and ruination as Vietnam. Later, it too came out conclusively that Vietnamese resistance was a wholly indigenous phenomenon and the two poor nations of Cambodia and Laos had in fact been flattened with napalm bombs and fatal ground attacks for no rhyme or reason.
And by every independent account, now similarly placed in a desperate predicament is the U.S. in Afghanistan and similarly are eyeing its political leadership and military command desperate actions to show a face to an American public that has spent its big treasure and quite a lot of blood on this Afghan war, and which has been consistently fed with lies on nonexistent battlefield successes and victories by its officialdom and a collusive embedded media. For this, it has zeroed in on Pakistan to make of it a scapegoat for the war that the U.S. forces and their coalition armies have veritably lost in Afghanistan. And this scapegoating is sure to cost Pakistan dearly if even now the Islamabad establishment doesn’t get its act together and puts up a brave stand. Already, it has sold out the innocent Pakistani lives to the CIA drone butchery. And intolerably horrific will be the toll if this establishment doesn’t shred off its meekness and servitude that has emboldened the U.S. and NATO warlords to give a damn to Pakistani lives and make a mockery of its sovereignty. After all, what else could you expect when President Zardari himself cavalierly tells a visiting CIA chief that collateral damage by U.S. drone incursions could be worrying the Americans but worry him not? And when Prime Minister Gilani servilely tells a U.S. ambassador that he would protest against the drone attacks in parliament and then ignore it? But both these eminences must know what is in the offing is a holocaust that the president would find it hard not to worry about and the prime minister not to ignore it. Even as both are deceitfully keeping a blind eye turned to the civilians’ massacre in the CIA’s drone attacks, the tribal populace, the victim of this wilful slaughter, is in a boiling outrage more against the Islamabad establishment than against the perpetrators of this massacre of the innocent. But they shouldn’t remain oblivious of the way this tribal anger is gradually inching on to transform this anger into scorn and animus against the Pakistani state and its military. And since in all likelihood the desperate activities of a virtually defeated American army and its allies in Afghanistan are to expand to more tribal areas as well as our settled areas, the storm of the consequent public outrage can be well imagined by this establishment. It will be both dreadfully convulsive and humanly unstoppable. The ultimate outcome is anybody’s guess.
The establishment must read into the vileness of U.S. intents, so evident by the very spuriousness and intrinsic chicanery of their confused stances. If these eminences do not muster up some spine right now and take a firm stand against this contemplated wicked adventurism on our land, our people will be gored deeply, no doubt. But these eminences too will have it for life from our people. They stand forewarned.