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Bi-polarity to gasping uni-polarity by By Brig Asif H. Raja

PAKISTAN PAYS HIGH COSTS:

For US 12 Yr War on Terror:

Close to 50,000 Deaths,

over $100 Billion in losses,

Citizens Insecure

 

 

 

 

 

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Bi-polarity to gasping uni-polarity

By 

Brig Asif H. Raja 

December 31, 2015

 

[ Editor’s Note: Although this is a scholarly read, which is always dense material, I suggest you read this and save it to a file. Raja is known as one of the top strategic writers in Pakistan, where intellectual competition is fierce. There is no flair and flash here, but information.

Some of it you will be familiar with, but the value of a piece like this is having so much of it in one article, and new material that you did not know. Another bonus is the additional context that can help you get a better handle on connecting the dots and seeing through the disinformation smokescreens that are continually blown in our faces.

Don’t be embarrassed by having to read it twice… or more. I always have to, as there is so much information in here you just can’t absorb it all in one pass unless you are Mr. photographic memory, like Gordon.

 

This building up of our general background database brain power gives us “defense in depth”, which helps us pick up on all the ring around the rosy games being played on us now, even in Alt media, which has been heavily infiltrated because it was necessary and inexpensive to do, where people can be bought for pennies on the dollar vs. the think tank and corporate media route, which takes tons of cash.

Raja is the real deal and has always been our “go to” guy for his expertise areas. People like this are what has make VT what it is today — the long term relationships, our staying power and track record of not getting sucked into being a pipeline for bogus stories, which is an industrial-scale business today Jim W. Dean ]

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End of Bi-Polar World.

Our crazy world can be a mind bender at times

During the Cold War, proxy wars were common because the two superpowers didn’t dare to fight each other directly due to nuclear deterrence. The US-led West demonized the USSR and scared the world to keep away from the monster of communism.

The US projected itself as the champion of democracy and human rights and guardian of the free world. The CIA was used covertly, and NATO overtly, to spread the US’ area of influence. The KGB, assisted by the Warsaw Pact military alliance of seven Eastern European States, did the same.

The arms race between the two superpowers impacted the economy of USSR. Its economy was further battered in the Afghan war.

With its military and nuclear power intact, the huge Soviet Empire fragmented from within on December 15, 1991, and broke into 15 smaller States, and the USSR shrank to the Russian Federation. The US emerged as the sole superpower, putting an end to a bi-polar world and giving way to a uni-polar world.

Islam Projected as Chief Threat

The Neocons in the US and the American Jewish lobby mulled over how to make the 21st century the ‘American Century’ and to rule the world for the next hundred years. For the achievement of this goal, a convincing motive had to be manufactured. The New World Order (NWO), conceived by George W. Bush senior in 1989, was modified and the Red Army threat was replaced with a green flag threat. Islam was hyped and projected as the chief threat to US-dominated capitalism and international order.

Within the Muslim world, radical States such as Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Libya, Sudan, Lebanon, Somalia and Iran were marked as ‘dangerous’. This was confirmed by Patrick Buchman in 2003. Samuel Huntington gave credence to this theme in 1990s by writing in his book ‘Clash of Civilizations’ that, in the future, wars would no longer take place between countries but between cultures, and that the best candidate for the upcoming divide would be between Islam and the West.

Brzezinski’s Concept of Eurasia

One of the major reasons of projecting Islam as the major threat to US hegemony was the concept of US uni-polarism propounded by Brzezinski in 1970s. For the achievement of this ambitious objective, he like the earlier strategists held Eurasia as the key region, the capture of which would ensure control over Africa and facilitate world domination.

Eurasia is the largest continent where lay treasures of the world. For effective control of Eurasia, he had recommended establishment of western front in Europe and southern front in Asia complementing each other. He was categorical in his assessment that whosoever controlled Eurasia dominated the world.

NATO made Relevant

NATO had lost its relevance to exist after the end of Cold War and dismantlement of Warsaw Pact for which it had been created. Some way had to be found to keep it operational. NATO was tasked to expand eastward and integrate as many East European, Baltic and Caucasus States. It got heavily involved in Balkans.

Once its membership jumped from 16 to 28 States, it was made into a global task force. The western front was thus maintained and not dissolved. Paradoxically, the western front was reinforced after dismantling the southern front in Afghanistan in 1989.

Establishment of Two Fronts

Having consolidated and expanded NATO in the 1990s, the US hawks then waited for an opportunity or an excuse to establish southern front in Asia for which Afghanistan and Iraq had been earmarked as target countries in the modified draft of NWO in 1997. 9/11, whether real or engineered, provided the excuse the US was eagerly looking for to occupy Afghanistan and Iraq.

Demolition of Afghanistan in November 2001 and Iraq in 2003 undertaken by George W Bush junior led neo-cons (Dick Cheney, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz) were aimed at establishing a secure southern front to complement the western front that was established by merging Eastern Europe into European Union in early 1990s. The underlying idea behind the establishment of two fronts was to disrupt and occupy Central Asia, capture all its energy resources and thus gain control over whole of Eurasian continent as propounded by Brzezinski.

Russia under Boris Yeltsin

Russia under drunkard Boris Yeltsin remained economically dependent upon USA and Western Europe to survive. Yeltsin’s lackadaisical approach allowed NATO and CIA to extend their outreach into Eastern Europe and re-integrate it into Western Europe.

CIA was actively involved in fomenting color revolutions in Eastern Europe, Baltic, Caucasus and Central Asia. Biggest breakthroughs were fall of Berlin wall and reunification of Germany, breakup of Yugoslavia into six independent States and disintegration of Czechoslovakia.

NATO’s eastward drive towards the heartland of Russia and the US insistence to deploy Missile Defense Shield were hostile steps and in violation of the US-Russia treaty signed in 1990 that the US will not threaten Russia’s security interests.

Russia under Vladimir Putin

In the new millennium, the situation began to change when Russia came under Putin in 1999. Since then, he has remained in power at a stretch and held both the appointments of President and PM. He resolved to rebuild weakened Russia and regain part if not all the glory of demolished Soviet Empire.

He started to reassert Russia’s authority in global politics as well as over its breakaway Republics by making good use of its oil and gas resources. EU became dependent upon Gazprom for gas. Six Central Asian Republics are the soft belly of Russia, on which the US has its eyes since long and which Russia can ill-afford to lose. Both Russia and China are keeping this vital region in their loop with the help of Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO).

In order to keep resurgent Russia under control, Bush administration embarked upon a highly expensive and controversial Missile Defence Shield (MDS) program under the plea of safeguarding USA from rogue States like North Korea and Iran. Poland and Czech Republic were persuaded to deploy components of the MDS. Putin expressed his concerns asserting that the MDS was Russia focused and threatened to counter the threat. It strained US-Russia relations.            

Russo-US Encounters

After the CIA inspired rose revolution in Georgia which brought down President Eduard Shevardnadze and brought in pro-western President Mikhail Saakashvilli to power in 2004, the first serious Russian encounter with the US took place in Georgia in August 2008 when Russian troops invaded Georgia on August 8, 2008 and by 10th occupied several Georgian cities and bulk of breakaway South Ossetia as well as Abkhazia. Since then, South Ossetia and Abkhazia are firmly in control of Moscow.

The next standoff between the two took place in Ukraine. When the government of pro-Moscow President Viktor Yanukovych was overthrown in February 2014, he fled to Russia. Putin reacted by sending Russian troops and seizing Crimea in early March and amassing 40,000 troops along eastern border of Ukraine.

Sevastopol seaport in Crimea is an important Russian naval base which it cannot afford to lose. In a popular referendum held on March 16, Crimeans voted to join Russia. After ratification by the two houses of Russian Parliament, annexation of Crimea was formalized on March 21.

Ten cities of Eastern Ukraine are heavily populated by Russian speaking and pro-Russia people. Unrest is going on in several cities and militants urged Moscow to send in Russian troops. Although NATO showed restraint by desisting from moving towards Ukraine’s western border, situation is still tense.

While Putin is using gas as a weapon to tighten up Ukraine, EU which is itself heavily dependent upon Russian oil and gas, at the behest of USA has imposed sanctions and threatened to apply further sanctions to force Russia to lay its hands off Ukraine. The US accused Russia for attacking Ukraine on trumped-up pretext and has hurled a warning, giving rise to fears that another Cold War is in the offing.

Turbulent Middle East

The US controlled strategically important Middle East by propping up authoritarian regimes and establishing GCC comprising six Gulf States and making Iran under Reza Shah Pahlavi as the policeman of the Persian Gulf. In addition, Israel was created in 1948 at the cost of Palestinians. It was economically and militarily bolstered to bully the Arab States.

While the US succeeded in neutralizing Egypt through Camp David Accord in 1979, it lost Iran in March 1979 after Imam Khomeini took over power. Another emerging power Iraq, seen as an obstacle in the way of Israel to become unchallenged power of the region was weakened through 8-year war with Iran, First Gulf War in 1991 and imposition of harsh sanctions.

Invasion of Iraq

When these incapacitating acts failed to bring down Saddam, the US under George W Bush led neo-cons and Jews chalked out a grand plan to change the boundaries of the Middle East, replace radical rulers with compliant and secular rulers, harness oil resources and make Israel the super power of Middle East.

The plan envisaged piecemeal annexation of Arab States. The first axe fell upon Iraq in March 2003 after pasting trumped up charges. Although occupation forces left Iraq in 2011, they have left behind embers of sectarianism. Hardly a day passes without suicide attack/bomb blast.

Regime Change in Libya

Taking advantage of the Arab Spring, insurgency was fomented by CIA in Libya in 2011 to bring down Qaddafi regime. Handfuls of Libyan rebels mostly living in exile were instigated by CIA to start an armed rebellion.

UK and France led the assault and within months Libya was destroyed, the regime toppled and Qaddafi brutally murdered. Chaos in Libya was premeditated because Libya was a stable African society in North Africa and Qaddafi had made it into a real welfare State.

He wanted to use the water, oil and financial resources of Libya and the intelligence of the Libyan people for the reconstruction of Africa. In order to solidify African Union, Qaddafi wanted to build an African Monetary Fund, an African Central Bank, and an African common currency.

Moreover, Qaddafi had moved to take over the Arab banking corporation in Bahrain, and the Libyan leadership had over $200 billion in foreign reserves. Common currency for Africa would have been a threat to Western Europe and North America and a real danger to Euro as well as to the US dollar.

Besides, Chinese had become the dominant force in infrastructure development within Libya. There were over 36,000 Chinese involved in railway, road, water, agriculture, and other forms. Libyan-Pakistan defence ties had grown manifold and Libya had placed a big order for purchasing defence equipment from Pakistan.

While Libya was playing ball with Russia and China, it was also very friendly with the west and cooperating with them since 2004 but still was viewed as unpredictable by western oil and defence tycoons.

To save euro/dollar and to capture Libyan oil, Qaddafi had to be removed. Although Libyan oil is now being controlled by the US/western companies, political and security situation is highly unstable.

Syrian Crisis

Syrian crisis from March 2011 onwards saw Russia, Iran and Hezbollah standing behind Bashar al Assad and the US, EU, Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Gulf States supporting Syrian Sunni rebels wanting to bring down Assad’s Alawite regime. When government forces gained an edge over the rebels in mid-2013, a chemical weapons attack on a Syrian town north of Damascus was engineered and drummed up.

Making it an excuse, the US ordered NATO to strike Syrian defence infrastructure with cruise missiles. However, at the 11th hour, Obama took a u turn in the wake of Putin’s mediation, offering to dismantle Syrian chemical stockpiles. The US backtracking tensed US-Saudi relations. While the western threat receded, Syria got engulfed in a new crisis in which the Islamic militias are fighting among each other as well as Assad forces, much to the delight of Israel.

Islamic State of Iraq & Levant (ISIL)

The ISIL initially linked with al-Qaeda is pitched against Free Syrian Army (Sunni Syrian rebels), Syrian Revolutionary Front, Army of Mujahideen, Islamic Front (supported by Saudi Arabia) and Jabhat al-Nusra (Nusra Front). Ghuraba al-Shams group is in clash with Nusra Front.

Jundul Aqsa and Jaish al Muhajireen are independent. ISIL has emerged as the strongest group and is in control of almost half of Syrian territory in northeast and one third of northwestern Iraqi territory and has formed a caliphate. While the US-NATO air power jumped into the fray of Iraq and Syria in August 2014 to defeat ISIL, Russian air force joined the war in Syria to prop up Assad regime from 30 September 2015 onwards and has enabled the Syrian Army to recover some ground in southwest.

The important city of Deraa has been taken over. After downing of Russian jet by Turkey, relations between the two countries have strained. However, more and more countries are getting aligned to defeat ISIL, known as Daesh, which is termed as a global threat.

Iran’s Defiance

Iran under Khomeini completed full cycle of Islamic revolution and became militarily stronger and a staunch opponent of US and Israel. Iran added to its military muscle by embarking upon nuclear program in 2002, which it maintained was meant for peaceful purposes.

Both Israel and the US backed by the EU alleged that Iran was developing a nuclear weapon and exerted extreme diplomatic pressure together with four rounds of sanctions and military threats to force Tehran to abandon its program. Covert war was initiated by CIA to affect a regime change.

Replacement of outspoken anti-US/Israel Mahmoud Ahmadinejad with moderate pro-western Hassan Rouhani belonging to Reformist Party in June 2013 brought a change in US stance and it chose to befriend Iran after the latter signed interim nuclear deal in November 2013 pledging that it would roll back its nuclear program in return for easing of economic sanctions.

Thaw in Iran-US relations further strained Saudi-US relations since Riyadh has considered Iran as a threat to Sunni Arab regimes. Rift between Riyadh and Doha over latter’s refusal to refrain from supporting Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt and elsewhere was another cause of concern for Saudi Kingdom.

Fears of Gulf States

Gulf Arab States want an interim government in Damascus and the resignation of President Bashar al-Assad. Gulf kingdoms also have serious concerns about Iran’s nuclear ambitions and its dangerous designs in the Middle East.

The Shia crescent formed by Syria, Hezbollah dominated Lebanon, Bahrain, eastern Saudi Arabia and southern Iraq is seen as a big threat to Sunni kingdoms in Middle East. Suspecting that Shia uprising in Bahrain in 2011 was Iran inspired, Saudi led Gulf Force was dashed to quash it.

They fear Iran’s potential nuclear weapons capability and deeply distrust the Americans for their overtures to Tehran and civilian nuclear deal which is likely to strengthen Iran. Saudi Arabia is also wary of Iran’s meddlesome role in Yemen where it is supporting Yemeni Houthi rebels and impelled Riyadh to form a joint Arab force of ten countries and launch air war against Houthis in March this year which is still continuing.

Saudi Arabia is also fearful of ISIS, which has threatened to capture Mecca and Medina, and has recently announced formation of 34-member alliance of Muslim countries, which excludes Shia ruled Muslim countries.

Turkey’s Phenomenal Economic Growth

Despite being the leader of seculars within the Muslim world since Kamal Ataturk days and member of NATO, Turkey has not been given membership of EU. In the 1990s, Turkey economy had become sick and it came under heavy debt of IMF. Its economy however began to progress dramatically when AKP led by Tayyip Erdogon took over in 2002 and made the country Islamic Republic.

While Turkish constitution is secular, in practice it is Islamist. Within less than a decade it solved political, judicial, financial and economic problems. By 2005 all loans of IMF were cleared and in 2007 Turkey was in a position to extend loan to IMF and EU countries.

Today it is 16th largest economy in the world and is in a position to lead the Muslim world. Its output has reached $820 billion and has $400 billion worth trade. It has 27 trade partners all over the world and in a decade it attracted $120 billion FSD. Stunning economic progress made by the incumbent government coupled with Erdogon’s tough stand taken against Israel after the incident of peace flotilla in the high seas in 2009 has become a cause of worry for the US led west.

It is suspected that a willful vicious propaganda has been launched by the US based cleric Gullen and his supporters in Turkey, secular and liberal forces and western media to undermine and bring down the government. However, Erdogon has reasserted his authority as a result of last elections. Because of his tiff with Russia, he is mending fences with Israel to meet country’s gas needs.

Pakistan

Pakistan has emerged as the sole Muslim country with nuclear capability backed by robust armed forces with reasonably strong defence industrial and technical base and plenty of skilled labor force. Pakistan’s nuclear capability is an eyesore for the US, India and Israel. India is more vexed since nuclear parity has blunted its blackmailing tactics and imperialist designs.

The US is concerned about Sino-Pakistan conviviality since the future role assigned to India cannot be accomplished without breaking up Pakistan or making it a compliant State of India. It is vying to wean away Central Asian Republics (CARs) brimming with natural resources from Sino-Russo influence and for piping out oil and gas for western markets through Port Gawadar.

Indo-US-Israeli nexus has been striving hard since 1980s to denuclearize Pakistan and make it a Satellite State of India. Their efforts were stepped up after 2001 and they nearly succeeded in declaring Pakistan a failing and ungovernable State when the PPP regime was in power. Besides several articles written by Americans including Lt Col Ralph Peters article “Blood Borders” indicating balkanized Pakistan, revelation made by Carlotta Gall that Pakistan and not Afghanistan was the real target lent strength to the assertions that the US cannot be relied upon.

Consequent to change of government in Pakistan in May 2013 and changing alignments in Middle East, Riyadh, Bahrain and other Gulf States have begun to lean more heavily upon Pakistan. Pak-Turk cooperation also keyed up. South Korea offered to make investments in Pakistan.

While Russia has come closer, China has invested $46 billion for the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), which is a game changer for Pakistan. Iran has agreed to resume stalled Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline project. Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India gas pipeline project has been approved.

Notwithstanding positive developments, what is worrying for Pakistan is not so friendly behavior of Afghanistan and Iran and growing strategic partnership of Iran and Afghanistan with India. Development of North-South Corridor connecting Mumbai with Bandar Abbas Port in Iran, fast track development of Chahbahar Port in Iran by India and linking it with Afghanistan and Central Asia through road-rail network are aimed at undermining Gawadar Port, encircling Pakistan and gaining access to CARs markets.

India under extremist Narendra Modi, known for his anti-Muslim/Pakistan stance and not so friendly Afghanistan under Ashraf Ghani and pro-India Dr. Abdullah does not auger well for Pakistan. Although of late Modi is giving friendly signals, his change of heart is certainly not out of sincerity of purpose but owing to changed geopolitical environment. Sooner than later he is likely to revert to his belligerent policy.

The US has helped in easing tensions between India and Pakistan as well as between Afghanistan and Pakistan. India agreed to abandon its belligerent policy because of fast improving internal socio-politico-economic-security conditions of Pakistan and its success in combating terrorism.

Kabul has softened its stance owing to resurgence of Taliban and having realised that only Pakistan can help in bringing the Taliban to the negotiating table. All have agreed to resume dialogue and cooperate with each other in fighting terrorism and in solving Afghan tangle through negotiations and in improving socio-economic conditions of South Asia.

Russo-China-US Altering Relationship

During the Cold War, USSR and China, the two largest Communist States fell apart in 1960 owing to political, cultural and ideological differences. Sino-US détente in 1972 further distanced USSR from China. Gorbachev mended fences with China in 1989 and today the two neighbors have become close allies. China has emerged as the chief rival of USA with all the trappings of future super power.

The US leans upon India to help it in encircling and containing phenomenal rise of China. The US in league with India is trying hard to win over as many littoral States around the Indian Ocean to check China’s ingress into the Indian Ocean laced with critical choke points and Sea Lanes of Communication (SLOC).

It is building coalitions with regional allies like Australia, Japan and the Philippines, and partners like Vietnam and India to bring Indian Ocean under full control to ensure uninterrupted flow of oil. Washington is currently promoting an ‘Indo-Pacific’ concept, which connects the Indian and Pacific Oceans as part of its approach towards Indian Ocean.

Haunted by the threat to its corporate capitalism because of China’s economic model which has lifted 300 million Chinese out of poverty; American writers are accusing China of endangering global stability.

Although China’s strategic focus continues to be on the Pacific, China’s priority will always be on protecting its energy security interests by way of securing the SLOC, spreading from the Gulf to the South China Sea. China is hectically building artificial islands in South China Sea to militarily check its backyard while the US is keen to increase its influence over SLOC in this Sea.

Both are resorting to shadow boxing. China is keen to develop Gawadar seaport so that its navy could checkmate Indo-US dominance of Indian Ocean and protect the SLOC, vital for the country’s energy imports. China has made deep inroads in the Middle East and Africa which include many Littoral States.

Ongoing construction of old Silk Route through CPEC from Kashgar to Gawadar and Karachi since March 2015 has the potential to make the region prosperous and self-reliant. It will however upset Indo-US game-plan of developing an alternative Silk Route in which the duo would be major beneficiaries.

Uni-polar World Gasping for Life

In 1992, the US emerged as the unchallenged sole superpower. In 2001 when George W. Bush triggered the Global War on Terror and the whole world fell in line, the US was economically, politically, diplomatically and militarily the strongest nation in the world. It was the largest aid-giver and leader of the First world.

It had a $15-trillion economy, and was looked at with awe and envy for being the “sole superpower.” In little over two decades, uni-polarism has begun to totter and it is speculated that the all-powerful US is fast running out of steam, and sooner than later uni-polarity will be replaced by multi-polarity.

Many say that the era of the US global hegemony is over. While Putin is looked at with respect for his deft handling of critical situations, American elite judge Obama as a weak president responsible for the loss of global clout which the US enjoyed.

Today the US is burdened with a national debt of $ 16.3 trillion and a total debt close to $ 59 trillion with very little chance of recovery in the foreseeable future despite the discovery of Shale gas. Apart from the debt which it has accumulated because of its craze for foreign adventures, the US leadership has also amassed tons of hate against America around the world, raging particularly in the Muslim world.

This is in spite of the US doling out aid/grants to the needy countries generously and making substantive contributions in terms of science and technology. Still, the US is presently one of the most hated nations on earth.

The US track record during and after the Cold War is that it has always attacked economically and militarily poor countries. Excepting Israel and India, the aid it lends to its allies is always attached with tough conditions and for self-serving purposes. Besides bloody wars, destabilization of elected governments or regime change through gruesome covert operations is another favorite hobby of American leaders. Pakistan has suffered the most at the hands of US and its ally India.

Among the major reasons of USA’s decline are its dual standards and discriminatory policy with regard to Palestinian and Kashmir issues and its subservience to Israel, aggressive policies of pre-emption and unilateralism, anti-Islam/Muslim policy, its grandiose plans to redraw the boundaries of the Middle East and to take control of oil resources, lust for untapped mineral resources of Central Asia, over indulgence in highly expensive war on terror and in covert wars to neo-colonize the Muslim world.

All its high-flying objectives have gone for a six after it got stuck in the quagmire of Afghanistan. Last but not least, the 2008 global recession has badly impacted the US and European economies. Rag-tag Afghan Mujahideen having humbled the Soviet Empire have now rolled the honor and prestige of the sole super/hyper power in dust.

The US sudden and rapid decline has made its self-created financial institutions like IMF and World Bank weary and defiant. They are not favoring the US suggestion to create alternative financial institutions to counter BRICS. While majority of Latin American States have moved out of the influence of North America, even Europe led by Germany and France is showing signs of non-cooperation.

Putin is cleverly playing upon the sensitivities of European countries to draw a wedge between Europe and USA. China has reduced American influence in Africa to insignificance and is raring to become an economic superpower by 2025. Saudi Arabia and other Gulf States crave for US friendship no more.

New power centres have emerged and new alignments are shaping up. The invincible NATO is breaking up after its humiliation in Iraq and particularly in Afghanistan. Despite using excessive force, Islam couldn’t be undermined. Rather, it has gained ground and biggest conversion rate to Islam is in USA. Growing isolation of the US in the world has blurred ‘American Century’ dream.

The US can recover ground if the leadership changes its posture from arrogance to affability, restrain Pentagon from adventurism, CIA from covert operations and media from propaganda war, gets rid of perverse influence of Israel, India and UK, decentralize power concentrated in the hands of 1% American elites, formulate even-handed global policies to make the world peaceful and last but not least, mend fences with the Muslim world.      

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The writer is a retired Brig, defence analyst, columnist, author of five books; member Executive Council Pakistan Ex-Servicemen Society; Director Measac Research Centre and Director Board of Governors Pakistan Thinkers Forum; who takes part in TV talk shows. asifharoonraja@gmail.com

Brig.Raja is a Defence Analyst on International Defence Related Issues and Distinguished Member of Pakistan Think Tank.

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Enemy in the apparel of partner

Enemy in the apparel of partner

Brig.Gen(R)Asif Haroon Raja

Pakistan Army

 

Al-Qaeda as a terrorist organization was hardly known in Pakistan till the US declared openly that 9/11 attacks on World Trade Centre were undertaken by Al-Qaeda. The group known as Al-Qaeda was organized by Osama bin Laden (OBL) who was simply an ordinary Jihadi volunteer from Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) with traces of Yemeni background having passion for participating in Islamic Jihad against Russian occupational forces in Afghanistan.

 

OBL was indoctrinated by CIA experts to choose Islamic Jihad as the main purpose of his life. He cooperated with CIA in their efforts to launch operations against Soviets in Afghanistan and till then was a pious warrior enjoying respect and prestige among US planners. But no sooner Russia was defeated in Afghanistan, US strategic priorities shifted having divergent goals and so was the respect for the Jihadi elements in Afghanistan. They termed them as the non-state actors dangerous for the world peace. US officials especially CIA started treating them with contempt and derision.

 

US invasion of Iraq in August 1990 led OBL to readjust his mindset and realign the direction of its outfit ‘Al-Qaeda’. The rift between US and OBL led to fateful event of 9/11. The US images-8invaded Afghanistan and occupied it with its full wherewithal and military weight but failed to make correct moves to apprehend OBL. Hence, OBL took advantage of faulty US policies through a method of exploitation. He used emotional appeal and urged the Muslim world to oppose US who is an occupational force in Afghanistan like the Russians and hence must be fought against. He also found his sympathizers in Pakistan who bought his message. Presence of OBL and Al-Qaeda in Pakistan was due to flawed US policies.

 

One of the major tasks assigned to the US led coalition in Afghanistan was to kill and capture Al-Qaeda leaders operating inside Afghanistan and some parts of Pakistan. Al-Qaeda had virtually turned into a perilous outfit capable of inflicting serious losses to coalition forces in Afghanistan. Pakistan took some difficult strategic decisions and offered full cooperation to capture the world most dangerous and treacherous terrorists associated with Al-Qaeda.

 

Pak Army deployed its sizeable force to be engaged in anti-terrorist operations. Pakistan Army and paramilitary forces prepared plans to conduct operations against Al-Qaeda elements in the most sensitive and volatile region of Pakistan’s Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), where powerful armies of Great Britain and Soviet Russia were once defeated at the hands of tribal lashkars.

 

Pakistani government’s decision to provide support and make efforts to capture Al-Qaeda terrorists, earned Pakistan a very harsh backlash of terrorists associated with Al-Qaeda. They turned against the State of Pakistan and targeted its security forces, high officials, key communicators, and civil society including innocent women/children, peace loving people busy in their business or prayers in the mosques. Pakistani support and efforts, however, proved fruitful and many key commanders of Al-Qaeda were apprehended or killed during operation.

 

None can deny that it could not have been possible to break the backbone of Al-Qaeda without the significant support offered by Pakistan and efforts made by ISI to apprehend the Al-Qaeda elements. Since Pakistani authorities had taken a strategic and historical decision to cooperate with US led coalition to fight the menace of terrorism, therefore, their top priority was to locate and apprehend OBL. Unfortunately OBL found sympathizers inside Pakistani soil and succeeded in having a facility to covertly live inside Pakistan. The killing / apprehension of OBL would have been a rejoicing event for both Pakistan and USA, but the US preferred to create an atmosphere of mistrust and betrayal for reasons best known to it.

 

The US and western public opinion builders and international media leveled serious allegations against Pakistan. This also created political and institutional turmoil inside Pakistan spreading divisive themes among civil military leadership and agitating the civil society to raise the questions of violation of sovereignty of Pakistan by US raiders. Had Pakistani officials / ISI known about the presence of OBL inside Pakistan they would have reacted positively to apprehend / kill him to save such a chaos which led to lingering court probes.

 

Pakistan as a responsible country was cooperating in US led war on terrorism and had shown substantial results by killing and apprehending vital Al-Qaeda terrorists. It was not an option for Pakistan to hide OBL (as alleged by USA and others) and get embarrassed. At no stage any hint about possibility of OBL hiding in urban centre was given by the US despite the fact that most high profile al-Qaeda leaders were arrested by Pak agencies in urban areas. Pak agencies had nabbed Khalid Sheikh, Abu Faraj al-Libbi, Abu Zubedah, Ramzi bin al-Shibh, Umar Patek and scores of others involved in plotting 9/11 from cities. It was only when a piece of information about one named Sheikh Ahmed El-Kuwaiti was given by the ISI in 2010 that the CIA shifted its gaze from western border towards Haripur, Abbottabad, Peshawar region.          

 

CIA wanted to take all the credit for hunting OBL without any support from any other agency. The arrangement enabled them to claim the assured invincibility of USA’s military might and professional competence of CIA. Hence, CIA deliberately sidelined ISI in their scheme to hound OBL alone. No doubt at tactical level US led coalition forces in Afghanistan had suffered stunning setbacks due to intelligence failure and poor performance of tactical commanders, hence, they preferred marginalizing ISI and acted selfishly. In their short sightedness and high motivating pulse to claim full credit of OBL killing, they forgot the actual consequences.

 

As the world witnessed later on, the outcome of such uncaring attitude proved risky, edgy and nervous, as Pakistan and its spy agency was not only blamed openly for supporting the terrorists but also made responsible for hiding OBL inside Pakistan. The US leadership created an environment of mistrust and cynicism having lasting scars, thus destroying the spirit of coalition to collectively fight the menace of terrorism.

 

The US found it difficult to accept its greediness for having sidelined its vital ally in Global War on Terror (GWOT), but failed to realize that it will not work for the cause. Blame game played by US leaders / field commanders helped them to cover up their failures in GWOT, but overall loss / defeat in the effort against terrorism has not been realized. The US leadership was so staggered with the information of a high value target like OBL in Pakistan that they forgot all the norms of diplomacy and the hard fact that Pakistan was not a foe and had rendered immense sacrifices in fighting the US imposed GWOT. Pentagon ordered the Navy SEALs to violate the sovereignty of Pakistan by crossing the border and go for the stealth attack. This was totally unlawful and illegitimate.

 

Former CJSC Admiral Mike Mullen informed Gen Ashfaq Kayani after the helicopters had reached Bagram air base. Gen Kayani in turn informed President Zardari and Air Chief Marshal Rao Qamar. By the time F-16s were made airborne, or the Quick Reaction Force in Abbottabad and ISI detachment commander reached the spot, raiders had flown back to safety.

The egoist US leaders bereft of good judgment failed to realize that in the international politics such actions amount to intimidation of other independent States and that the reaction might be very perilous. Fortunately Pakistani side kept their cool despite internal tumult and nothing happened. On the other hand, the US leadership left no stone unturned in converting the crisis into a world war scenario.

 

Although OBL’s burial in the Arabian Sea fulfilled the desire of OBL wanting not to be buried in the ground, al-Qaeda members felt angered over the way his body was secretly disposed off. To avenge his death, their wrath fell upon people of Pakistan.

The US posing to be a strategic ally stabbed Pakistan in the back. People of Pakistan, government officials, Pak Army and ISI were at grave pains when they found that they have been misled, misinformed and betrayed by their own allies especially USA and its spy agency CIA who not only violated the sovereignty of Pakistan by intruding into its territory without permission but also for creating a situation in which Pakistan stood blameworthy and culpable for hiding OBL inside Pakistan. Public opinion went against Pakistan and there was an internal turmoil leading to serious political instability the impact of which still goes unabated. No doubt US action proved that a foe in the garb of a friend bashed its ally badly.

 

Failing to discredit the Army and ISI and in pressurizing Pakistan to launch an operation in North Waziristan, CIA-NATO punished Pak military by launching a murderous helicopters attack on a check post at Salala on November 26, 2011 and also heating up western border with the help of runaway Fazlullah. Pakistan that had been quietly taking the barbs and insults for years could take no more and reacted by closing Shamsi airbase from where drones were launched, suspended military and intelligence cooperation, refused to attend Bonn conference and above all, closed NATO supply lines.

 

Pakistan reopened the supply routes and restored relations when Washington apologized and promised to treat Pakistan as an ally. The US swallowed the bitter pill since northern network was too expensive to carry heavy military stores from Afghanistan. More so, Pakistan was seen as the only country that could help in easing the pains of risky drawdown in the face of impasse on talks between the US and Afghans Taliban.

 

Finding that no breakthrough has been achieved on peace talks with Taliban after Doha fiasco in June 2013, Karzai’s somersault on signing Bilateral Security Agreement, allowing the US military to leave behind a residual force after 2014, and most disturbingly Pakistan making visible progress in talks with TTP, another attempt was made by USA to shame ISI by reincarnating the ghost of OBL through a fictitious story appearing in NY Times dated 19 March that ex ISI chief Lt Gen Shuja Pasha had known about presence of OBL in Abbottabad.

 

The invention was based on the book ‘The Wrong Enemy: America in Afghanistan 2001-2014’ authored by British journalist Carlotta Gall. She further claimed that Gen Musharraf and his top commanders were aware of al-Qaeda’s plan to assassinate Ms Benazir Bhutto. She quoted Gen Ziauddin Butt having confided in her that Gen Musharraf had arranged the hideout of OBL in Abbottabad. Ziauddin, who holds Musharraf in low esteem since he had put him in solitary confinement for two years in October 1999 and dismissed from service, said he was misunderstood and Carlotta misquoted him. He added that he had been misquoted by western media several times to advance their agenda. Pak media, ever-ready to promote western themes to embarrass military establishment, added fuel to fire by playing up New York Times story.

 

Recently, Paul Craig Roberts has debunked claims made by Obama that members of US Navy SEALs team had killed OBL and SEALs team claiming that they had killed him. He claimed that OBL had died due to renal failure in Tora Bora caves in December 2001. He argues that no one can survive renal failure for over a decade and that no dialyses machine was found in the Abbottabad compound. He adds; “No one among the crew of the ship or any eye-witness corroborated the news of OBL body’s burial at sea”. He further adds that 25 members of the SEALs team that supposedly took part in the raid died mysteriously in a helicopter crash in Afghanistan on August 6, 2011. In his view, they were bumped off to keep the cooked up story credible. It may be recalled that Paul Craig had earlier on challenged the veracity of 9/11 terror attacks asserting it was a false flag operation to kill, maim and dispossess millions of Muslims in seven countries, none having any connection with 9/11.          

 

One wonders, how long the west would keep playing with the ghost of OBL about whom there have been dozens of articles published in western print media that OBL for all practical purposes was a half-dead man after he escaped from Tora Bora caves in December 2001. With three wives (Khairee, Shareeja and Amal) and eleven children, the seriously ailing OBL wanted to lead a quiet life and die peacefully. He had died much earlier owing to his kidney disease. It is widely believed that purpose behind May 2 attack was to bolster Obama’s chances of re-election. Carlotta gimmicks were meant to publicize her book. She however, gave an opportunity to CIA to denigrate its rival ISI, which has foiled its dangerous agenda against Pakistan.

 

December 16, 2014 episode was planned in Afghanistan and was surely the handiwork of RAW and Afghan Intelligence to disparage Operation Zarb-e-Azb and cause pain to Pakistan. If the US doesn’t feel any qualm in tracking and killing OBL and Al-Qaeda operatives in Pakistan, why can’t it nab or kill Fazlullah and Omar Khurasani, or restrain RAW/Afghan CDS from undertaking cross border missions inside Pakistan?     

 

The writer is a retired Brig, defence analyst, columnist, author of five books, Director Measac Research Centre and Member Board Thinkers Forum Pakistan. asifharoonraja@gmail.com

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Does Pakistan hate America: Sampling of Answers

Does Pakistan hate America?

 

 

 

 

 

 

imgres-1
I went there two years ago and they were were generally nice to me and my dad.
 
Best Answer
do you want to hear the honest answer or the answer that you want to hear.
Well the honest answer is that day by day pakistani people are starting to hate usa because of their drone attacks that are killing innocents plus due to their agents like raymond davis who comes and kills pakistanis and due to many events like this.

Other answer: yeah Pakistani love America so much, america is so much spreading peace and love…..

btw Pakistani people are nice. Obviously they will welcome you and will love you because they are good host, (lols not talking about the people in tribal areas like taliban etc they are ignorant and even kills pakistanis). other pakistanis are nice, i see many many foreigners in islamabad and people treat them good.

 

Other Answers 

Relevance

 
  • Mrs. Mommy answered 2 years ago
    Pakistan does not hate America, some people in Pakistan do however. You cannot blame an entire country for the sins of a few.
 
I went there two years ago and they were were generally nice to me and my dad.
 
Best Answer
  • leo answered 2 years ago
Do you want to hear the honest answer or the answer that you want to hear.
Well the honest answer is that day by day Pakistani people are starting to hate USA because of their drone attacks that are killing innocents plus due to their agents like Raymond Davis who comes and kills Pakistanis and due to many events like this.

Other answer: yeah Pakistani love america so much, america is so much spreading peace and love…..

btw pakistani people are nice. Obviously they will welcome you and will love you because they are good host, (lols not talking about the people in tribal areas like taliban etc they are ignorant and even kills Pakistanis). other Pakistanis are nice, i see many many foreigners in Islamabad and people treat them good.

 
  • Mrs. Mommy answered 2 years ago
    Pakistan does not hate America, some people in Pakistan do however. You cannot blame an entire country for the sins of a few.

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MAN & DOG by Inayet Ullah

MAN & DOG

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

During a discourse with a friend about lifestyle of the people of western world,

particularly America and Canada, I said: “They do not seem to believe in love”. My friend was taken aback and he said: “How do you mean they do not believe in love, of course they do”. My reply: You are confusing “love” with “love-making”. True love entails taking care, making sacrifice, taking pains, parting with wealth, sometimes even renouncing your rest and comfort. They detest all of these. You live only once, so enjoy life physically as much as you can is what they think. They are rejecting the institution of marriage and family because these institutions intrude their personal life enjoyment.

 

I do not mean that they are completely devoid of love. Don’t get me wrong. They do have love, but all the love they have is showered on their pet dogs. Very rarely will you see a home without a dog. Life without a dog for them is a life not lived.

 

The institution of family is gradually withering away and a more favoured domestic life is one that is free from spouse and children, with a pet dog as companion.

 

The love and devotion they have for their pet dogs is great. They would happily clean the dog after excretion, dispose of the dog waste, bathe them, take them out regularly for a stroll, feed them with the best dog food available.

 

Leaving bed in early morning and going out for walking, jogging and fresh air is good for health, but very few people do it because it is hard to leave the cosy bed in early morning and go out and take exertions of running and jogging. But for dog lovers it’s a pleasure to take the dog out in early morning for a stroll, since, as you know, blessed are those who do something for others.

 

Why they have such an extraordinary love for and attachment with dog is not very difficult to understand A substantially large number of them do not marry and do not want children. When they grow old and weak, they have no children to look after them, and if they have any, they leave them alone, unattended and uncared for, as soon as they attain adulthood. At this stage of their life their pet dog gives them love and companionship.

 

When he or she is deserted by spouse or a girl friend or boy friend, making him or her forlorn – which is not very uncommon – who do you think is there to share his or her grief and loneliness. Of course, it is their pet dog with his unfettered love who stands by with them, and unlike human beings, never lets them down.

 

Dog-loving scenes in public places, parks, elevators etc. are not very uncommon. An incident in point: Once I was moving down in an elevator where a lady, fondly holding an ugly looking dog in her lap was continuously caressing the animal and at times showering her kisses on him. A gentleman standing close to him who was watching her whispered to me “Only a mother can love her baby like this”. I remember his witty comment even today.

 

A lady’s pet dog died which made her so sad that she remained isolated and stunned for weeks in bereavement. To commemorate the mourning she got an obituary card printed, with a picture of him, and distributed it among her relatives and friends.

 

In recent past a fair was organized in a city of USA in a park which had a portion allocated for the help of homeless dogs. This portion had shops, display banners, informative literature on how you can help a homeless dog. There were signs and banners eliciting your sympathies with homeless dogs. Knowing that there are homeless dogs in the city, only a heartless human being will be unmoved and will not have sleepless nights.

 

There was a news item stating that by virtue of a will, the pet dog of a lady named Leona Helmsley inherited $12 million from his owner. Lucky dog! A caretaker had been appointed to look after the dog and utilize the money for his needs and welfare. I am now wondering who will inherit the money after the death of the dog. Perhaps his next-of-kin.

 

There is one particular virtue in pet dogs. Not found in other pet animals. A dog would never attach his master whereas pet cats may sometime do.

 

Perhaps dog is the luckiest animal among all the animal species and has a very nice time in this contemporary world. Some of them enjoy the living that millions of human being cannot dream of. Sometimes I think if they loved their fellow human beings as much as they do their pet dogs, perhaps the world would have presented a quite different scenario.

 

A saying goes “Cleanliness is next to Godliness. ”In their case, I think, friendliness and happiness is what is dogliness.

 

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Differing perceptions

Differing perceptions

 

Asif Haroon Raja

 

Terrorism in Pakistan is the outcome of backup support provided by USA, India and Afghanistan to TTP and its affiliated groups in the northwest and to BLA, BRA and BLF in the southwest. While foreign agencies fund, equip and provoke the terrorists to strike civil and military targets in Pakistan so as to create bedlam, the liberals and section of media on the payroll of outside powers keep instigating the government and Army to keep fighting war on terror till the elimination of each and every terrorist. Those preaching peace and suggesting dialogue with militants are termed as Taliban lovers and insane.

 

Pro-fight elements consider drone a useful weapon to kill terrorists hiding in far off places and go to the extent of claiming that residents of FATA love drones and view drones as a good deterrent against terrorists. Pro-peace groups on the other hand see drone as the biggest obstruction in the way of peace and say that people of FATA, particularly women, children and elderly people have contracted mental diseases because of hovering drones. They feel that the US purposely uses this weapon to trigger terrorism and scuttle peace process. They quote examples of Nek Muhammad killed by a drone soon after he signed a peace deal, Bajaur seminary struck by a missile in October 2006 when peace deal was about to be inked, pro-talks TTP leader Waliur Rahman droned on May 30, 2013, Hakeemullah killed by a drone on November 1, 2013 when he had consented to take part in peace talks.

 

Anti-talks lobbies are making hue and cry as to why the government is insisting to hold talks with the TTP when its new leader Fazlullah has categorically stated that there will be no talks and has threatened to avenge the death of Hakeemullah. They argue that it is pointless to hold talks with Fazlullah who has a history of breaking deals and had soaked Swat in blood. Those favoring talks counter their arguments by saying that the security forces have been fighting the militants for over a decade without achieving any results and in the process, civilians, Army, police have suffered heavy losses and Pakistan has lost over $100 billion. They say, other than Sri Lankan and Colombian insurgencies, no insurgency could be resolved anywhere in the world through force and ultimately had to rely on dialogue to end the conflict. They quote the example of US military supported by military contingents from 48 countries having used excessive force for over 12 years has finally decided to quit and is seeking dialogue with the Taliban to arrive at a political settlement.      

 

Within Pakistan, perceptions on various issues are viewed differently. There is unending debate concerning Quaid-e-Azam, whether he was a secular or Islam Pasand. Opinions differ whether Pakistan should be an Islamic or a secular State. We are not clear whether the US is a friend or foe and should we or should we not remain tied to the apron strings of USA for times to come. We are unclear whether war on terror is our or someone else’s war, whether we should continue to fight or end it. Same is the position taken on drones, whether they are useful or harmful, and whether they violate Pakistan’s sovereignty or not. While majority view India arch enemy of Pakistan which cannot be trusted, movers of Aman ki Asha view differently and keep highlighting the benefits of friendship with India. They advocate grant of MFN status to India as well as road access through Wagah border to Afghanistan and Central Asia.

 

The opponents argue that until and unless India settles core issues of Kashmir, Siachin, Sir Creek and water, India should be kept at a distance. They say that India has been cleverly extracting concessions from Pakistan without giving anything in return and that friendship should be on reciprocal basis. Opinion differs over Kalabagh dam so very vital for the existence of Pakistan. Nationalists in KP and in Sindh dogmatically oppose construction of the dam well knowing that India is building large numbers of dams over the three rivers of Chenab, Jhelum and Indus to turn Pakistan into a wasteland.                                                

 

Peddlers of hate and destruction have all along striven to impose Shariah upon others using coercive, cruel and violent methods. Instead of reforming the society by endearing to influence the wayward and weak Muslims and guiding them to become practicing Muslims through preaching and demonstrating strength of character, honesty, tolerance, amiability, generosity and humility, the militants have been resorting to cruelty and terrorism to terrorize the people and force them to accept their brand of Islam, which they project is the real Islam.

 

While the militants condone their aggressive acts under the cover of religion, saying they have a noble agenda of establishing Shariah in the country, the deprived class groaning under the weight of poverty and insecurity and fed up of arrogance of proud pursed elites, tend to overlook the acts of militants. The religious and politico-religious leaders as well as religious scholars sympathize with the cause of militants since they too yearn for Shariah. Those driven by ignorance, or half-baked knowledge of Islam, or fear, believe that the extremist groups have taken up militancy in order to get rid of anti-poor western systems of governance and justice, and to usher in real Islam in Pakistan for the betterment of the downtrodden. While doing so, they ignore the fact that over 40,000 innocent people have died at the hands of militants, and the whole social fabric has been severely traumatized. Very few pick up courage to speak out that Islam preaches peace, tolerance, brotherhood, fraternity and shuns violence, bigotry and bloodshed.

 

Sectarianism is another curse which has created bad blood between Shias and Sunnis. Extremist groups of each group declare the other Kafirs. Civil-military relations often remain tense. The politicians and pseudo intellectuals hate Army and miss no opportunity to degrade its image. However, for every natural and manmade calamity the rulers and the people look toward the Army and the Army always live up to their expectations. Army handles the monumental tasks with utmost efficiency and at the peril of their lives.

 

While drone is choice weapon of USA, suicide attack is the choice weapon of militants. Pakistan has suffered the most at the hands of suicide bombers. This phenomenon crept into Pakistan in 2002 and started to peak after Lal Masjid operation in 2007 and recorded 78 attacks in 2009. Groups involved in this heinous practice are TTP, Asmatullah Muawia and Qari Zafar groups of Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, 313 Brigade of late Ilyas Kashmiri, Badar Mansoor group of Harkatul Mujahideen, Qari Saifullah and Amjad Farooqui groups of Harkatul Jihadul Islam, Lal Masjid Brigade, TNSM, Jaish-e-Muhammad, Jamaatul Furqan, Jaishul Islam, Fidayeen-e-Islam, Abdullah Azam Shaheed Brigade. TTP’s late Qari Husain, cousin of late Hakeemullah Mehsud, earned the title of Ustad-e-Fadayeen. TTP spokesman Azam Tariq is on record having stated that ‘Our Ulema have termed suicide attacks as an elite form of Jihad, which has made the Mujahideen invincible’.    

 

It is, however, heartening to note that the Ulema belonging to Wafaqul Madaras are now unanimous in declaring suicide attacks as un-Islamic. All religious leaders do not subscribe to violence and say that Quran clearly spells out that murder of one innocent human being is equivalent to murder of entire humanity. Saudi Arabia’s grand Mufti Sheikh Abdul Aziz al-Sheikh has recently stated that killing oneself is a grave crime and a grave sin and those who kill themselves with explosives are criminals and are moving fast to hell. His categorical verdict must have put TTP leaders on the back foot and compelled them to ponder over whether it was right to train teenage boys as suicide bombers and deceivingly making them believe that no sooner they will blow themselves up, they will be welcomed by Hoors and taken to paradise. Misusing the name of Islam, the trainers have been exploiting the poverty of the boys hailing from downtrodden class and misleading them to kill Muslims.

 

Being the oldest and most respected religious political party of the country, it is the responsibility of Jamaat-e-Islami chief to remove ambiguity and show the clear path as enshrined in Holy Quran rather than adding to the existing chaos and confusion by siding with the misled. Wafaqul Madaras should also play its role in forbidding every tom, dick and harry claiming to be guardian of Islam from issuing mischievous Islamic decrees like the one related to Shahadat. Gory practice of suicide attacks and all forms of terrorism and that too against own brethren must end now. Dialogue is the route to peace and tranquility. The government should not only strive to bridge divides within the society, but also focus on creating sectarian harmony and enforcing law for all sectarian groups to prevent recurrence of Rawalpindi tragedy on last 10th Muharram.   

 

The writer is a retired Brig and a defence analyst. asifharoonraja@gmail.com

 

 

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