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Archive for June, 2009

Revelations made by Peter Chamberlin should awaken us

The army enters the scene to tackle a serious law and order or security problem when all other options fail to deliver. By that time patience of the government and that of general public has worn out, tempers are high, law breakers have gone berserk in shredding writ of state, civil law enforcing agencies are on the run and civil administration is absent because of life threats and casualties sustained. Local population stand intimidated due to terror tactics of militants laced with sophisticated weapons and IEDs.

alt Any person defying their orders is made a horrible example to put fear into others. Under such inhospitable environments, it is not an easy task for the military to put everything right in a jiffy since it doesn’t carry a magic wand. Soldiers are as thin skinned as their civilian counter parts and equally vulnerable to bullets, suicide bombers and IEDs. Whatever advantages they have get diluted when they have to operate in home terrain of rebels, confront faceless enemy resorting to guerrilla hit and run tactics. Not only it has to differentiate between friend and foe, it has to remain mindful of collateral damage to the local population among which many support the militants quietly.

Factor of collateral damage kept the army restrained when operating in Waziristan, causing immense irritation to USA. Policy of selective and minimal force to avoid civilian casualties was objected to. From 2005 onwards, the US continuously lectured Pakistan to do more. Our measured actions displeased USA so immensely that it accused the army of either being incompetent or in league with militants. All sorts of libelous stories were circulated to malign image of the army. Ultra liberal writers hummed Indian and western themes that army and ISI consider Taliban as its strategic assets. Failing to evoke desired response and irked by peace deals, western media joined by own writers started to overplay militant threat and converted it into an existential threat to Pakistan. Fata was declared most dangerous place on earth and a danger to USA and rest of the world.

altOur nuclear program came under sustained vilification attack feeding an impression to the world that Pakistan was not in a position to protect its nuclear weapons from Taliban. The US military began to flex its muscles and pressure was built up that US Special Forces had chalked out contingency plans to step in and takeaway the nuclear assets before they were stolen. As part of psy war, one Mustafa Abu Yazid in Afghanistan claiming to be top Al-Qaeda leader stated that Pakistani nuclear weapons instead of falling into US hands will be taken over by Mujahideen and used against Americans. He also hoped that Pak army would be defeated in Swat and that would turn the tables. US State Department and CIA pioneered the malicious campaign against Pak army, ISI and nuclear program through US media duly reinforced by western and India media. Once military was launched in Malakand Division in late April resulting in massive exodus, Manmohan Singh couldn’t contain his glee; he chuckled that Pakistan has collapsed. His merriment proved short-lived for he and his colleagues are now distressed over successes made by Pak troops, Swat front collapsing too soon, Hindu-Afghan agents getting killed or caught in large numbers and noose around Baitullah tightening and whole Pakistani nation supporting the army.

Swat valley, Buner and Lower Dir have been fully secured and few pockets are being cleared. Close to 1600 militants including Shah Duran have been killed and 800 families of IDPs have returned to Buner. The military has decided to tackle all sanctuaries of militants and to that end used air strikes and artillery selectively in Bajaur, Bannu, Orakzai, South Waziristan based on accurate intelligence and destroyed strongholds, training sites, weapons and ammunition dumps of militants. Idea is to give no quarter and breathing time to the militants and keep them dislocated and on the run. Baitullah’s former companion Zainuddin Mehsud, who had become his rival, has been killed in DIK most probably by Baitullah men. Zain’s brother Misbah has taken over. Drones have targeted Baitullah’s stronghold killing 50 people. Pro-government and anti-American Maulvi Nazir who had been at war with Baitullah has come close to him after latter’s area was hit by a drone on 14 February. Maulvi Nazir, Malang and Turkistan Bittani are important figures who would make the task of army easy or difficult.

India is now looking forward to exploit IDPs and is banking upon cornered Baitullah to turn the tide. It may be recalled how unreasonable and uncompromising stance Indian leaders had maintained from 26 November onwards in the aftermath of Mumbai attacks. They refused to investigate the case jointly or to have talks unless Pakistan agreed to do their biddings. For a change, Pakistan stood its ground since the so-called evidence provided was eyewash. All indications pointed towards Indian homegrown terrorists linked with Indian army, Hindu extremist parties/groups and RAW. Mahrashtra Chief Karkare who was assassinated on the first night of occurrence had made startling revelations and investigations had reached advanced stage. Real culprits had been exposed who had committed several incidents of terror for which Pakistan was blamed. Reputation of Indian army was at stake since large number of its senior serving and retired officers were found involved in terrorism. So was BJP which was looking forward to win May elections and recapture power.

Since stakes were very high, hence the drama was enacted by RAW in which Pakistan was roped in to kill several birds with one stone. By throwing the entire blame on the doorsteps of Pakistan, India has cleverly closed the case of Col Purohit and several other military officers directly involved in terrorism. Prejudiced western leaders and scandalous media are tightlipped about it. India has expressed willingness to resume talks but made it conditional to destruction of anti-India terrorist network in Pakistan. It has now issued arrest warrants of recently released Hafiz Saeed and 22 others blamed to be involved in Mumbai carnage.

Like tens of American and western writers, US journalist Peter Chamberlin has made startling revelations about designs of USA in our region. He says that since Pakistan is the keystone in US stratagem for materialization of its commercial interests in southern Central Asia and Middle East, it is a compulsion for it to take Pakistan under its total control. He says that Al-Qaeda and local Taliban in Pakistan are creations of CIA since Al-Qaeda was not in existence before 9/11. Involvement of Al-Qaeda was manufactured solely on the basis of single Israeli source and Osama who is long dead is purposely kept alive. War on terror against imaginary Al-Qaeda was conceived and mounted by neo-cons for fulfillment of US global ambitions and Af-Pak strategy is another deception. Chamberlin aptly says that CIA has managed to pull-off a world-class propaganda coup by making Pakistan scapegoat for the mess it has created in Afghanistan. The most disquieting part of his exposure is that CIA had used Northern Alliance most ruthless men to destabilize Fata and NWFP. He says that mostly Uzbeks from Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan had been launched from Afghanistan to indulge in kidnappings, bombings and beheading of over 400 tribal notables. Peace deals were disrupted through drone attacks or opening new fronts. In his view Nazir holds key to war and peace in South Waziristan.

Is it not another wake up call? Time for softness and vagueness has run out since half of the country is in flames. Unless our leaders gather courage and expose the real face of our so-called friends and bring to notice of the world and UN the perverse role played by RAW and CIA and extensive damage incurred under the garb of friendship, the whole country would get engulfed in foreign sponsored militancy.

The writer is a defence and political analyst based at Rawalpindi and author of several books.Email:ah.raja@yahoo.com

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The Fine Art of Corruption: Parasitic Washington lobbyists make millions on backs of poor Pakistanis

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“The Influence of lobbyists hired by the Pakistan Government in Washington, D.C. is marginal in U.S. Foreign Policy towards Pakistan” (Quotation of Retired Ambassador and Foreign Secretary of Pakistan, Mr. Riaz Khokhar in Geo TV Meray Mutabiq, June 27).

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Israeli and Indian Worries over President Obama

altUS President Barack Obama recently visited several Arab countries. He tried to restore the tarnished American image. He disavowed the Bush Policies towards Iran and Iraq. His major focus during the visit remained Palestine, Israel, Iraq and Iran. He showed a mature and sensible behaviour while facing the Arab media. During his visit no importance was given to the Afghanistan. The trip on the other hand will help President Obama’s administration in formulating foreign and policies. The likely change and shift in President Obama’s policies is not being digested by Israel and her ally India; since both are working to destabilise the Muslim world. It has become a obvious that India and Israel have a penchant for opening new fronts generally against their neighbours.

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Policy of radical Hindutva boomeranged on the BJP

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(India’s Right wing Bajrang Dal’s flag with a Swastika)

In India while the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government has

started its second consecutive term, the main opposition party, Bharatiya

Janata Party which faced an enormous defeat this time, has not been able to

come out of shock. Instead, there are daily incidents of accusations on one

another within the party, for defeat in the elections.

Even some party

leaders have questioned the main agenda of the party i.e. the radical

Hindutva. Strategists of the BJP gave it the name ‘Party with a difference’.

By the use of this strange adjective, the ‘proficient’ leaders of the party

tried to tell the people that their party is very much different from that

of other political parties. Party strategists tried to establish the

identity of the BJP as the most disciplined and incorruptible party of

India. But, since the party came to power under the leadership of Atal

Bihari Vajpayee, and till today, the realities which people have witnessed

of the BJP, it has proved wrong, all the claims of the party strategists. In

fact, after the recent defeat of the party, it seems that the BJP has become

the ‘Party with differences’, rather than the ‘Party with a difference’.

Voices of dissent which we are hearing today perhaps are unprecedented

within any political party of India.

Strategists of the BJP now seem to be trapped in their

own net. The journey of promoting aggressive Hindutva started with the

controversial ‘Toyota’ Rath Yatra by Lal Krishna Advani in 1990, which

ultimately helped the BJP to reach its culmination of 183 seats in 1999

general elections. As a result, the party strategists assumed the policy of

radical Hindutva as evergreen success formula. Since December 6, 1992 to

Godhra carnage and post-Godhra massacre, the BJP continuously tried to

polarise the Indian politics on communal lines. Thousands of innocent

Indians, both the Hindus and the Muslims, lost their lives in this dangerous

game of communalism, played by the party. Even though the people of the

country might not have liked it, but politicians like L.K. Advani, Narendra

Modi and organizations like the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and the

Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) blindly continued their mission of spreading

venom of communalism.

People of India ultimately taught a lesson to BJP that

this is the country of ‘Unity in Diversity’. The nation wants development

instead of entangling in the anti-developmental issues like temple, mosque,

religion, casteism and communalism. The party strategists completely tried

to follow the path of radical Hindutva and to get results out of it, the

party taken support of the RSS and its sister organizations, the VHP and the

Bajrang Dal. Besides this, the party used two young Muslim mascots, which it

repeatedly presented via media to show the nation and the world, its

‘secular’ credentials. But in recent elections, this ‘disciplined’ and

‘party with a difference’, was ruined so badly by the people that the same

party strategists of the party started rendering each other responsible for

this defeat.

The biggest question facing the BJP today is- what is the

future of the party hitherto surviving on the Ram Temple issue, aggressive

Hindutva and communal riots? On one hand, the BJP defended Varun Gandhi for

his hate speech against the Muslims, on the other side; by adopting double

standards, the party tried to distance it from his objectionable

comments. This same tendency of double standards has got the BJP at such

position, where only differences seem to exist. Advani, who during the

entire election campaign tried to prove Dr. Manmohan Singh a weak and inert

Prime Minister is now apologizing for his uncivilized language. Differences

in the party have reached to such an extent that some leaders, differing

from the policy of Hindutva, have started questioning the relevance of

radical Hindutva. Many such leaders are of the view that the defense and

support of Varun Gandhi proved costly to the party.

Not only is the BJP thinking on the policy of radical

Hindutva, even there is debate within the RSS, the source of Hindutva,

itself. A senior leader of the RSS has too favored a rethink on Hindutva by

the BJP. Indeed many strategists of the BJP and the RSS are now thinking of

the future strategy to be followed for extending its support among the

Indian masses. In the journey of communal churning, since last two decades,

from their commencement to conclusion, these communal forces have understood

that a bullet can be fired only once. So, there is need to take a new

‘slough’. These forces have understood that the voter of the nation is

getting more aware by the day. The issues of Amarnath shrine land allotment,

Sadhvi Pragya and Col. Purohit’s involvement in Malegaon bombing, Varun’s

venomous speech, Gujarat of Narendra Modi and the Ram Temple, Common Civil

Code and Article 370 are not seen by the people in the way the party wants

them to see. Instead, people have understood the all the communal issues

like these are just the electoral tools and propaganda of the BJP.

Consequently, the party is today far away from power.

The BJP, hitherto proud of the aggressive style of

speaking of Narendra Modi, is now in the position of serious thought that

which style is acceptable to the voters- Aggressive and uncivilized or

soft-spoken and cultured? The BJP stands unmasked of its Hindutva. People of

the country have understood that in fact the main objective behind following

the path of Hindutva was to come in power by suppressing and insulting the

minorities, particularly Muslims. Besides, the aware voters are also of the

view that nation can’t develop in the atmosphere of communal and religious

tensions. The BJP might be trying to show any picture of Gujarat through

publicity and advertisement, but by seeing the adverse effects on business

of Gujarati people as a result of communal riots, their ruined homes, and

refugee camps; one can imagine where the Gujarat formula would take the

country.

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Editorial Chitral News Pakistan: Paradigm shift required

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Paradigm shift required

Editorial Chitral News: Pakistan

12 June 09.

A paradigm shift in the methodology of choosing our rulers and administrators is required to meet the challenge of an ever deteriorating standard of governance and administration in our country. Democracy and Militarocracy have both been alternately tested in Pakistan since its creation, but none has borne satisfactory results. A completely new and revolutionary concept of adopting the system of ‘Meritocracy’ i.e selecting people for all public office posts eg president, Governors, Ministers, MNAs MPAs etc on the basis of merit, -posts which are presently filled through elections, is the need of the hour.

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