Afghan Journal

Lifting the veil on conflict, culture and politics

Pakistan : four probes and a killing

May 18, 2011

Pakistan has launched four separate investigations into the life and death of Osama bin Laden on its soil, according to U.S. Senator John Kerry. The army, the air force and the intelligence establishment are running a probe each while parliament last week ordered an investigation by an independent commission to be set up for the purpose.

It’s not entirely clear who is investigating what but a common theme running through the probes is to find out how did the United States launch a heliborne  operation so deep in the country, hunt bin Laden down in his compound after a shootout in the outer wing  and fly away with his corpse, without the knowledge of the Pakistani authorities. Indeed the military and the government only got to know about it after the Americans told them once they were safely out of Pakistani airspace.

It’s, doubtless,  a serious breach of Pakistan’s air and ground defences and the biggest worry for the nation’s security planners would be ensure that its eastern borders are secure, lest it gives bitter foe India any ideas of mounting an incursion of its own. It is also a failure of the intelligence agencies they didn’t know it was coming, or indeed what had happened until they were informed by the Americans. All that will be the subject of the parallel investigations.

But what about the other question that people inside Pakistan as well abroad are asking : how is it that bin Laden came to live in a town buzzing with military officers, serving and retired, and not far from the nation’s premier military academy without anyone finding out. The world’s most hunted man is found to be living not in caves in the mountains of the northwest region straddling Afghanistan, but in relative comfort in a military town, barely two hour’s drive from the office of the country’s intelligence agency.  Shouldn’t that be a question the nation must ask its security establishment ?  Indeed, avoiding the issue would only put the security agencies under a greater cloud of suspicion, as Pakistani commentators themselves are saying, not to mention their rather aggressive American interlocutors.

Badar Alam, the editor of the monthly magazine Herald. said it was revealing that the unanimous resolution that parliament passed in setting up a commission to probe the incident in Abbottabad had little reference to bin Laden and the militant Islamist groups that threaten not just other countries, but Pakistan itself. Indeed, contrary to worries that parliament would use the opportunity presented by the security agencies’ discomfiture to crack open the steel curtain and reveal their functioning, it seemed to have narrowed down the focus of the investigation to the U.S. violation of Pakistan’s sovereignty, he wrote in a piece for Dawn.

 ”Going by the tone, tenor and the text of the joint resolution, it is more than obvious that the investigators will be strictly focused on the American invasion into Pakistan, not on how bin Laden could live in Abbottabad undetected and whether there is any truth in unceasing reports about Pakistan army and intelligence agencies secretly collaborating with terrorists.”

Alam said members of parliament seemed more focussed on asking the military whether they could shoot down U.S. drone aircraft that had routinely violated the country’s air space particuarly over the northwest.  For all you know, the military might come out of this stronger with the politicians opening the purse strings further so they can buy expoensive equipment to better handle such incursions.

As Shuja Nawaz, director of the South Asia Center at the Atlantic Council in Washington, said the truth is that there were many in Pakistan  “angrier about the United States’ ability to launch a special-operations raid right under their noses than they are that bin Laden was found on their soil-and the military is bearing the brunt of the criticism inside Pakistan.”  He warned that the more America puts pressure on the Pakistan military, already smarting under the humilitation of the raid, the more it risks losing it as a partner.

Comments

If Bin Laden had moved into that Abbotabad compound just two weeks earlier before the attack, there could be some semblance of belief that he sneaked in without anyone knowing about it. The problem is this – the US has been watching his place for over a year. Bin Laden had 16 children in that compound. For how long these children could have stayed inside the compound doing nothing and not venturing outside. Children would go insane. They would have had illness, infection and what not, which would have required medical attention. Who was paying the utility bills? If the Americans can get curious about a compound that stood out in the neighborhood, how come no one in Pakistan’s famous intelligence unit did not sniff anything?

It is all window dressing. Pakistan’s inquiry committees are simply an eyewash. They will keep dancing around it until the next big news replaces the old one. Mumbai attack investigations have dissipated away. Most do not even remember it now. So Pakistan will run some fake investigation to kill time until the next issue arises.

The truth is out – Pakistan hid Bin Laden, Mullar Omar, Zawahiri and many prominent criminals hoping to wait out the Americans. That the Americans did not entirely rely on them and took their own action is the only surprise element here. They had underestimated the US and have believed that they are gullible. No matter how much they can hide the embarrassment of being caught red handed, the truth remains. Pakistan’s military and the ISI have been the foundation of global Islamic terrorism. They have only pretended to be working with the world. They know that the elements they have created have started hurting their own people. But they do not care. Their soldiers are expendable. Their people are expendable. They remain.

I’d like to see Mullah Omar hunted down the same way, without relying on Pakistan, inside Pakistan, again by the US. At that point, Pakistan will face its moment of truth.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive
 

It is (truly) disappointing to see politicians, media people in the global community still taking Paks seriously. Pak army is a rogue terrorist entity. The sooner every one realizes this better for humanity. Paks conducting “enquiry” on any terrorist is tamasha- a ridiculus comedy.

PA/ISI’S use of terrorism as an instrument of negotiation does not stop with India, Afghanistan and USA.

PA/ISI unleash terror on civilian Paks to intimidate them and keep them under control. Like the recent suicide attack that killed 90 people.

In the minds of Kayani, Pasha and pak generals, the ordinary pak soldiers, and pak civilians are dispensable fodder in their megalomaniacal delusions.

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive
 

The following is a post by a Pakistani in a different blog verbatim:

QUOTE
FC recruits had dreams of a happy, peaceful, future in mind, when they were were blown to pieces after graduation

Whenever Pakistan’s military feels challenged, they instill fear among people by brutal attacks that assert the army’s power over shocked and devastated citizens. Exercise of strategic depth is not restricted to Afghanistan and India. The people of Pakistan have been blown into pieces by Pakistan’s military establishment to achieve the following advantage for Pakistan-army:

1)’Taliban are killing Pakistanis’. This impression may gain sympathy from the international community.

2)Such devastating attacks scare Pakistanis into surrender to army’s capability to kill and hurt at will. To Pakistanis feeling emboldened by recent embarrassment of military establishment- ‘beware’ is the message.

3)The US effort to hire and train Pukhtoons as Frontier Constabulary to defend against extremists-terrorists, is subverted.

4) It is an assertion that peace in Afghanistan cannot be achieved without Pakistan’s strategic superiority over the Government of Afghanistan. Their message: Afghanistan’s future government must be Pakistan army’s satellite.

At this point in the war in Afghanistan, Pakistan’s army would like to re-impose itself as the extortionist with A-bomb in the region, as US and NATO plan to leave. But their ambitions were thwarted and their ‘mighty impression’ tattered when US took out bin Laden. President Obama announced that similar actions against other high value targets will be undertaken despite Pakistan’s fuss over violation of sovereignty.

Pakistan’s military junta will:

1)Like to retain their proxies created for strategic depth.

2)They would like US and international aid to continue flowing into Pakistan by asserting their destructive capability in the region. Though the Parliament, subservient to the military establishment, postures anti-Americanism, but it is a ploy to defend terrorist proxies.

This war has entered a crucial stage. Murder of citizens in major cities, blowing up shrines and markets, is already being done. A large scale campaign of murders, explosions and pitched gun-battles could ensue in cities like Karachi to keep Pakistan brutally under the stranglehold of a blackmail and terror enterprise
END QUOTE

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive
 

How typically Pakistani. Instead of addressing the root problem (the presence of virtually every Jihadist outfit in the world in Pakistan), pretend to be the victim of another problem (violation of their sovereignty by the US…to get a terrorist).

Their effort at playing victim and deflecting blame, might work with India, but it won’t with the US. India has zero leverage on Pakistan. The US on the other hand, could simply delay aid for a few weeks and create some major headaches for Pakistan. Sure, Pakistan could retaliate and make life hard in Afghanista. But every time they throw a childish tantrum like that, it simply means the US is planning to play even more hardball, post-Afghanistan.

In reality, the Pakistanis can fume all they want. From the American perspective not much has changed (except that they have now have more intel on who’s helping AQ). Should they find Zawahiri or Mullah Omar tomorrow, you can bet that they won’t hesitate to go after them, even if it happens to be in downtown Karachi or Lahore.

Had the Pakistanis been trustworthy enough to pursue terrorists on their own, unilateral action by the Americans would not have been necessary. But other than talk for public consumption, everybody (even the Chinese) know how reliable the Pakistanis are really are when the rubber meets the road. And if they really are trustworthy and the just fouled up, then this whole episode demonstrates their incompetence. So either they can’t be trusted or they are incompetent. Either way, that only leaves one choice for anybody that wants to target terrorists finding refuge in Pakistan.

Posted by kEiThZ | Report as abusive
 

Pakistan, its people alongwith its Armed Forces and intelligence services have given termendous sacrifices in the war on terror. Our great nation has been severely destablized due to foreign intervention, time to call it a day. No matter how far we go after terrorist groups, bring countless number of terrorists to justice, even then Pakistan will be pushed for more. Time to say enough is enough, foreign forces should leave Afghanistan, this war should stop so that Pakistan’s tribal areas can be stabilized.
The inquiries are a right step in correct direction, ordinary Pakistanis have the right to know the truth. Any more unilateral actions, any more betrayals and so-called ‘allies’ will loose all the trust of Pakistani nation. Time the US/NATO/ISAF own their falures, accept their defeat in Afghanistan and withdraw.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive
 

The widely differing debriefs in Washington and Islamabad, regarding the aftermath of the Abbotabad raid, by themselves reveal how poles apart the two allies are at the moment.

The US is debating whether Pakistan was complicit and culpable, or was it merely incompetent. While in Pakistan the debate rages around violation of sovereignty.

Both ignoring the others concerns. Both going off on their own tangents without an iota of interaction and showing no desire to interact either..

Posted by DaraIndia | Report as abusive
 

I think damage control measures are being taken. US is trying to absolve the Pak military / government and the ISI saying that senior personnel were not involved in hiding Bin Laden. Truth might be otherwise. But they need to be practical at the same time. They need to get steady supply of goods through Pakistan to complete their mission in Afghanistan. Until they do that, they will have to curtail themselves from exposing the truth about Pakistan. As the war goes on, think tanks will begin to look at Pakistan’s nukes. I think this will become the next big agenda for the US and the world in general. Having seen the control rogue elements have inside Pakistan, anything is possible. So the US would probably like to stay longer in this region to diffuse Pakistan’s nukes. They have made huge investments in India that they’d want to protect. Sooner or later, one would find a dirty bomb unleashed by some militant group that can be traced back to Pakistan. In all it could be a CIA staged operation to justify action of removing nukes from Pakistan. So the war objective will shift towards defanging Pakistan. If Pakistan had acted responsibly as a nuclear power, none of these would be necessary. But guns in the hands of criminals is much more dangerous than those in the hands of civilians. If Pakistan cannot control its “rogue” elements, it means the rogue elements will begin to take over the system. And the nukes in the middle of all this is extremely dangerous to leave unattended. The next world war will happen in Pakistan and will be triggered by the “rogue” elements.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive
 

This pak author contradicts all the chest thumping by umairpk at this site:

http://thenews.jang.com.pk/TodaysPrintDe tail.aspx?ID=48070&Cat=9

Darkness descends

Dr Muzaffar Iqbal
Friday, May 20, 2011

But regardless of that money – or rather because of that money – Pakistan’s defence has reached its lowest depths since independence: Pakistan cannot even have one single plane flying without some part of that plane remaining hostage to a functional dependency on the United States, may it be short term or long term; may it be in terms of the radar system it uses or its actual engine which makes it fly. And like the cat which taught all its tricks to the tiger except climbing a tree, the US holds the magic key to the very functionality of Pakistan’s entire military operation. One turn of that magic key and it can render Pakistan’s military completely dysfunctional and lands its helicopters in the heart of Pakistan’s military establishment and then shout so loudly that no one in the client state would have the courage to stand up and say: wait a minute, before we tell you how and why Osama was resting in that house in Abbottabad, can you explain how did you violate international law and enter our airspace?

All the so-called friend of Pakistan had to do before landing in Pakistan was to make a statement in Kabul, alleging that “disturbing evidence” has been found which reveal Pakistan’s involvement with the Taliban and Islamabad and Rawalpindi started to shake. Senator John Kerry’s brief stay in Islamabad must have been one of the most rewarding of his entire career: the entire Pakistani military and political establishment was lined up before hand to receive him and listen to the minimum set of new operative instructions and say: we believe and we obey.

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive
 

Ok lets try not to get carried away on this tangent, calm down and stop speculating for a moment.

How do you discover the truth of what Bin Laden has been doing?

Put him on trial.

What we DO know is that, like the september 11 attacks, the US did NOT want an investigation on Bin Laden. They most definately did not want him captured alive.

I think the reasons for this are quite obvious.

What we also know is that the US deliberately lied about every single detail of the raid in Abbotabad, in what was definately a precisely timed, crafted and long anticipated assault.

Given this fact we can’t assume anything they’ve said in relation to the raid to be true and, in my opinion, anything the US has said about if and when it informed the Pakistani authorities.

Even the claim that the choppers flew across Pakistan from eastern Afghanistan is doubtful.

What we also know to be true is that the Pakistani Government is and long has been a close ally to Washington and does nothing meaningful, aside from talk, to discourage breaches of it’s national sovereignty.

Last week the Pakistani authorities were threatening to cut ties with the US military if they violated Pakistani sovereignty again. 3 days later the US did it again…

When one puts these facts together and remembers the partnership between the ISI and the CIA in training and funding Bin Laden in the beginning… as well as the fact that Pakistani citizens themselves are by nature very anti-american, speculation seems to turn sharply towards a very different conclusion than what we are hearing from those with louder voices.

I think what is going on is simple given the evidence.

How did the US manage to breach Pakistani airspace for so long undetected??

They didn’t.

The raid was conducted with the full knowledge of Pakistani intelligence authorities, was timed politically and strategically, and was intended to create headlines to this effect. It was also intended to be an assasination from the beginning.

Why are the Pakistani authorities outraged?

Because they have to be!

The political effects of addmitting collusion in an assasination on there home soil by the much hated United States would be devestating.

Especially when unpopular regimes, like the Pakistani one, are dropping like flies to uprisings all across the region…

Make no mistake about it, the truth to this story is completely different to is being discussed.

Don’t get caught up in the hysterical speculation.

That’s the intention of leaking a mass of contradicting information, the public gets so caught up bickering about stupid side issues that they miss the obvious facts.

Posted by brian-decree | Report as abusive
 

May I also point out that we have the rest of the Bin Laden family in custody…

What are they saying???

Posted by brian-decree | Report as abusive
 

@KPSingh
You raise some interesting questions. Conspiracy theorists aka jihadi apologists are having a field day.

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive
 

One thing this whole episode should point out (but a lesson the Pakistanis will never learn) is how dysfunctional their defence policy and posture is.

The focus on India has led to a thoroughly screwed up military organizational structure…that’s not even appropriate to fight India!

Consider these points:

1) PA officers are not promoted and rewarded in their career for fighting in the FATA as they are for time at tank regiments on the border with India.

2) A nation that’s utterly dependent on its sea lines of communication (SLOCs) for trade (because it can’t or won’t trade with the majority of its neighbours) and sustenance during war time, spends the least on its Navy (of all 3 services). Considering their worry about India cutting off its SLOCs, it’s astonishing that the PN does not field any sort of light aircraft carrier for sea control.

3) They are so enamoured with fighting WWII style armoured battles on the plains of Punjab that they actually spend more on the Army than the Air Force. This underspending is exactly why the PAF does not have enough radar coverage along its Western border or an integrated airspace management and air defence network. The Army focus is exactly why there is no unified airspace management authority in Pakistan which would allow immediate identification of any intrusion if detected.

4) They seem to assume that the Indians also have similar delusions of fighting huge tank battles. They don’t. The Indians have been smart to learn from the past and adapt to technological change. The IAF and IN may have their shortcomings, but the Indians certainly given them a fair hearing. It used to be that the PAF was technologically superior and numerically smaller than the IAF. Today, even that’s not true. By most reasonable assessments, the PAF would be destroyed within a week or two of any conflict with India. And that’s assuming they PN can keep the SLOCs open to get spares to keep the PAF flying for that long or if the lack of any serious information warfare abilities somehow escapes the attention of the enemy and the networks all stay up. But hey, the PA might still get its dream of going down in a blaze of glory in the deserts of Rajasthan!

5) Kashmir? Ha! That’s an after-thought for the PA. Nothing in their command structure notes any concern for combat in Kashmir. They’ll leave that to the insurgents.

These are conclusions of somebody who isn’t even in South Asia. One can only imagine what the Indians and Iranians have learned and understood about Pakistan’s defences. They’re probably pissed that the Americans exposed these shortcomings for the Pakistanis to learn from! Thankfully (for them), you can count on the Pakistanis to learn nothing from their mistakes. You see it wasn’t the Pakistanis that failed. It was all a HinJew-Christian-Buddhist, Indo-American-British-White guy conspiracy to steal Pakistan’s nukes! And that Bin Laden was dead ten years ago. The Americans just got his half-cousin, twice removed. And the wife of OBL? She’s obviously delusional to think some US military guys killed her husband.

Any real review should come to the earth-shattering conclusion that Pakistan’s Army-centric (and particularly armour/infantry-centric) defence posture is inappropriate for the defence and security of Pakistan. It would conclude that more priority needs to given to the PAF and the PN and that the Army needs to de-emphasize armoured operations along the Eastern border and develop strong infantry-centric and special operations focused capabilities for the mountainous Hindu Kush. That’s how they would eliminate terrorism and be able to better protect their country.

Any bets on whether any of these four probes will reach any conclusion close to what I’ve laid out above?

Posted by kEiThZ | Report as abusive
 
 

Keith

Being a student of Defence and strategic studies overseas, you need to first understand the regional dynamics of South Asia before you make judegemnts or establish opinions. I bet the strategists in National Defence University Islamabad or Command and Staff Quetta are not that stupid.
For all the crap above, the answer is simple, both Pakistan Air Force and Pakistan Navy has considerably invested in fighter planes,IL-76 mid-air refueling tankers, AWACs radars from Sweden, submarines etc. The betrayals by allies meant Pakistan could not buy sophisticated AWACS like those Phalcons Israel sold to India. Also while India was a candidate to purchase FA-18 hornets, Eurofighter Typhoons, JAS-39 Gripen etc Pakistan on the contrary could not even acquire spares for F-16s.
Pakistan Army being responsible for defence of homeland has a bigger role and PAF and PN support it. All you are advocating here for Pakistan is to change its defence posture and move towards more counter-insurgency focus. Sure insurgents, terrorists groups are an internal threat, but Taliban do not have an Air Force with SU-27 and SU-30s, nor do they have MBTs main battle tanks, armoured divisions facing the border or aircraft carriers positioned in the Indian ocean. India’s threat perception, its capability and intention determines the strategic calculus and thus defence posture of Pakistan;s security posture. A good start would be to ask India to move the bulk of its Army away from International border with Pakistan first.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive
 

Just forgot to mention the military exercise HIGHMARK 2010 with all three services of Pakistan Armed Forces participated. That tells more about the command and control, coordination, and structure of PA in defence of Pakistan in case of conflict.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ODasc_PpQ wE

PAF firepower demonstration HighMark 2010

I do not agree PAF could be destroyed within a week or two in case of war with India, rather if it could hold out and put up a fight in the meantime SPD-strategic plans division deploys TNWs Tactical Nuclear Weapons it would be Indians begging for a ceasefire within no time. Pakistan Army’s strategy of “offensive defence” is one such effort to show combat preparation, willingness to use conventional force, greater resolve, superior tactics, mobility and pre-emption to deter agression from India in first place. because a conflict with India will bring mutually assured destruction.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive
 

I’m sure they’ll get four different findings and conclusions and end up just as confused as ever. It’s all a cynical CYA exercise and a big waste of time. Paks are liars from the word go and nothing they say will have an effect on the average American except to reinforce an irresistible desire to terminate all foreign aid ASAP.

Posted by kolea | Report as abusive
 

“The betrayals by allies meant Pakistan could not buy sophisticated AWACS like those Phalcons Israel sold to India. Also while India was a candidate to purchase FA-18 hornets, Eurofighter Typhoons, JAS-39 Gripen etc Pakistan on the contrary could not even acquire spares for F-16s.” Umairpk

What has allies got to do with arms purchases? You show them the cash you buy it. When one borrows or gets aid and uses that aid to ‘buy’ warplanes the donor can lay restrictions. So do what India does, buy it internationally in the open market, there are other countries in the world besides the USA. Why continue with breast beating and lay the blame on a litany of ‘betrayals by allies’?

Posted by DaraIndia | Report as abusive
 

We are forgetting a serious villain here. Pakistan is merely a pawn. China has been behind all ills in the region. They have done all the wrong things, illegally and have cleverly hid themselves from all the smear campaign. Pakistan will not be such a rogue nuclear power without China’s steady help. See this article:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jamyang-no rbu/who-created-pakistans-nuc_b_864124.h tml

Another post Soviet bipolar world is emerging: China and its string of rotten pearls and the rest of the world. The world has to look for alternate manufacturing hubs, and reduce its reliance on China. Otherwise they are going to choke the world with economic clout, manufacturing muscle and a bunch of rogue states and armies like Pakistan, North Korea, armed with nukes. We have to look at the larger picture.

Posted by KPSingh | Report as abusive
 

The tragedy of Islamic extremism continues to grow. I believe that most of the citizens of Islamic Republics around the world merely wish to have the basic human rights they see others in the West enjoying. They are victims of history, and their anguish goes ignored. But exactly what can be done by outsiders to correct decades of neglect and rot from within? As I said, this is a tragedy, an inexorable march toward disaster with no solution.

That said, what these citizens seem unable to understand is that the sheltering of Osama Bin Laden, who was actively planning more attacks on US soil, is itself an act of war against the United States. The ISI sponsored Mumbai attacks were an act of war against India. Complaints about “illegal breaches of national sovereignty” don’t just fall on deaf ears, they convince the countries who have suffered from these terrorists that Pakistan itself is an enemy.

A majority of Germans either opposed Hitler or ignored him until it was too late. Pakistan is fast approaching, or has already passed, this same milestone. Just as many decent ordinary Germans were forced to suffer for the sins of the extremists who took over their country, the ordinary Pakistanis will be the ones to pay the heaviest price for the escalation of hostilities, which seems inevitable now.

The difference between 1939 and 2011 is nuclear weapons, of which Pakistan produces approximately 20 new ones a year. If a nuclear terrorist attack occurs, and the evidence leads to Pakistan, the fate of 180 million (mostly) innocent people will be sealed. This would be a tragedy for all humankind. Global civilization itself could fall.

The stakes couldn’t be higher. Pakistanis should be happy that thus far it is only their pride which has been injured.

Posted by BajaArizona | Report as abusive
 

BajaArizona

Your statements, declaring Pakistan an enemy and threats to a 180 million strong nation means nothing. Pakistan has given many sacrifices in war against terrorism shows Pakistan is not an enemy. If anyone would escalate, this nation oif pakistan knows how to retaliate, we have bore the brunt, face the terrorists daily and will decimate them. No internal or external enemy will hold out against the resolve of a strong nation, either they get decimated or they would have to surrender. there is no second options so keep your threats to yourself.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive
 

Umairpk

I have made no threats. Read my post carefully. I consider any escalation to be not only a tragedy for Pakistan, but for all humans everywhere. I deeply sympathize with the majority of innocent Pakistanis who are suffering through a civil war. As you say, Pakistan has made many sacrifices. Too many. And it continues to make more every day.

Your comment illustrates the problem as I have outlined it. You say no internal or external enemy will hold out against the resolve of a strong nation. Polls show about half of Pakistanis are mourning the death of Bin Laden. Wikileaks cables detail that your own generals have reported that your pilots often sabotage their aircraft rather than run missions against the Taliban. Osama Bin Laden lived for six years in an affluent suburb of your capital city. Elements of the ISI are directly implicated in the Mumbai attacks.

Your internal enemies have infiltrated every sector of your society and government. Your external enemies fled Afghanistan and operate freely in Waziristan. Your population centers are under constant siege by terrorists. Your people have been subjected to brutal repression and corruption and in return they have been fed only hatred for India and an increasingly extremist conservative brand of Islam that was imported by foreign Wahhabbis.

My country too is being attacked by conservative ideologues from within. My country too is being attacked by foreign Islamic extremists from without. I am ashamed of the corrupt and inept performance of Bush/Rumsfeld/Cheney. I accept that US policies during and after the Cold War helped to weaken Pakistan’s civil society over the past sixty years. But the question remains, where do we go from here? Do we allow our enemies a safe haven while they plot our violent deaths? 9/11 was the biggest violation of American sovereignty since Pearl Harbor. Bin Laden was actively planning another attack for the anniversary in September. Should we have let him continue out of fear of hurting your pride?

You see, real strength in a nation begins with the ability to honestly assess and criticize ones own failures. Your comments are patriotic and nationalistic, but they are not honest. That’s ok. I don’t need you to be honest with me. It doesn’t matter what I think. The whole planet is relying on you to be honest with yourselves. That is our only hope.

You are correct about one thing, there are no second options.

We’re all in this together.

Posted by BajaArizona | Report as abusive
 

BajaArizona

You claim my comments are not honest? elobrate please.

For rest of the crap, take it easy. Pakistan Military and government is not in bed with the terrorists. And how do you claim OBL was actively plotting attacks against US? How do you claim half of people in Pakistan mourning OBL? What is the credibility of so-called “polls” you refer to? Above all who brought OBL to AFGHANISTAN TO FIGHT sOVIETS?

Today Pakistan’s weak civil society is raising its voice and standing up to the security establishment to change its strategic calculus? See the difference, it is US which has always supported dictators in place of democratic governments. After all, US foreign policy goals are attained at the expense of blood of innocent civilians abroad. Isn’t taht what they did with Pakistan?

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive
 

@BahaArizona
You seem to have some misconceptions about PA//ISI role in sponsoring terrorism. They are not collaborators, LeT is the jihadi terrorist wing of PakistanArmy.servig and retired Pam army men train , plot terrorist attacks. Your suggestions are
Misleading on this front.

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive
 

Umairpk: got you to admit your “strong nation” has a weak civil society at least. That’s a start. As for the mourning of OBLs death:

>>A group of Pakistani politicians including a former minister hijacked proceedings in parliament to offer prayers for the death of Osama bin Laden, little more than a week after he was killed in a US Navy Seal raid.>support for the al Qaeda leader had fallen in Pakistan from 52 percent in 2005 to 18 percent in 2010 (the final numbers for Pakistan had not been calculated for this year at the time of the report). And 18 percent of a country of 187 million people is over 33 million.

That bin Laden took so long to find and ultimately kill is not as puzzling when it is understood that millions agreed with his policies and actions and millions more still do not believe that his policies and actions were enough to warrant his killing.

Posted by BajaArizona | Report as abusive
 

My post was truncated and I must go to work now. Whether the ISI or the Army funded Let, or what the exact poll numbers were and when, these are details which do not change the argument. Yes the US backed the mujahadeen, we also backed Saddam against Iran. We allied with lots of undemocratic tyrants in fighting USSR expansionism during the Cold War. We became the “world’s cop” after WW1, WW2, and Stalin finally convinced us to shake off our isolationism. Most Americans would LOVE to turn off the lights and bring every soldier home. We just have seen that movie, and it has a bad ending. One can’t just turn one’s back on those who would kill one, right?

The question is not whether the Islamist jihadists have infiltrated Pakistan’s military/ISI. It is how much and how far up the chain of command. We understand (most of us) that you are in a civil war, and that you are suffering and dying. We want to help those who oppose those among you who would purposely target mass civilians. We are just very very confused as to who is who, and your lack of honesty with yourselves about the abundant evidence is the source of our confusion.

Umairpk, it sounds to me like you are not sympathizing with the terrorists. It sounds to me like we both want a secure and democratic Pakistan.

I understand your frustrations with US policy. I agree with many of the complaints you have. Why can’t you understand our frustration after our deadliest enemy is found sheltering almost in the open in Abbottabad?

Posted by BajaArizona | Report as abusive
 

One last thing, the reason I claim OBL was actively plotting new attacks is because HE CLAIMED TO BE DOING SO. Refer to his many, many press releases if you are unable to believe the evidence obtained at his compound.

Posted by BajaArizona | Report as abusive
 

@Umairpk
I would not take the lone Arizona wolf seriously. It is very hot over there, most people do strange things, or, have we forgotten the guy who shot in cold blood the congresswoman and man others at a political rally. Mr Obama said something of the sort that the (Arizona) americans need to have their heads examined.
We are witnessing new America not of ww1 or ww2. The American power is now restricted to special night operations and cheating on allies. During a very short period The super power America has been degraded to one of the world powers sharing with China and other nuclear armed world powers. Pakistan army were involved in the entire operation with the exception of the actual raid, ISI was outsmarted. ISI saw the helicopters crossing as well, stealth choppers can be seen with naked eyes!
Because of military operations in the Pashtoon land in recent times, Pakistan military have now created enemies within and this is very dangerous. Pakistan leaders have to set their prioraties.National interests are guaranteed only wen the national security is in tact, not the other way around. I am not aPakistani citizen andbelieve that Pakistan military had no knowledge of Mr Osama. The story we have been told of his death is not serious either, no body and no photo or dna. This is for the birds. The yanks are expert in spins second only tothe Brits, not in any way Pakistanis. Eventualy the US Congress will have no choice but to impeach the President for the power he granted himself for ordering to kill and hide evidence, without a trial. No one in the USAis supposed to be above the law. Th USA congress is slow but not impotent to safguard the inegrity of the Nation by a kenyan immigrant’s son. Right now they are enjoying the feeling that the enemy was caught and killed by the military. They tried to impeach Bill clinton, simply because he could not keep his tail in between his legs and then lying and the cover up. I guess the current cia was th chief of the white house? Mr Obama with lmost same clintonians has definitely committed a crime against an unarmed person claiming that he was the dangerous Osama, who was wanted by George W.
Mr Arizona next door neighbours call the Americans Gringos and in Europe tzhey are no longer well seen in talk shows. In fact for the first time we the Europeans are realizing that today’s America do no longer share the western values? The dignity of a human is not violable and even imbedded in German constitution. In the USA the third largest numer of employees are seen looing after the criminals and maintaining the Prison system. The IMF chief was recently arrested in ny at the complaint of a hotel maid for attempted rape and where people in europe are considered innocents, until found guilty in a trial, in the USA prosecution handles the suspect from day one as a criminal, and makes no attempt to find the truth. For the french it was equivalent to sept. 11 attack on the dignity of a person who in all probability was heading towads becoming the next president of France.

Rex Minor

Posted by pakistan | Report as abusive
 

Americans should stop providing cover to pakistan army’s terrorist activities.

One hopes the Chicago trial would fully expose PA/ISI involvement in terrorism all the way to Kayani and Pasha.

http://afpak.foreignpolicy.com/posts/201 1/05/20/lashkar_e_taiba_mumbai_and_the_i si

Lashkar-e-Taiba, Mumbai, and the ISI
By Stephen Tankel, May 20, 2011

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive
 

Rex Minor

We believe only what we are capable of accepting. Your limitations are obvious to anyone.

“The yanks are expert in spins second only tothe Brits”

I’m guessing you’re an Iranian, probably at least middle-aged. I could be wrong of course but such reverence/paranoia for the British is an artifact of a time in history which ended 70 years ago, and which survives mainly in Iranians of a certain age.

Posted by BajaArizona | Report as abusive
 

This will be my last post. I’ve wasted too much time already talking to people who lack the ability to concede any point. No one is right all the time, I have admitted many wrongs, but somehow Pakistan is pure and uncomplicated and a shining example of democracy in action. Yeah, right.

I just want to let you know that I do not hate Muslims; I do not hate Pakistanis; I do not hate Middle Easterners. In fact, although I’m neither Muslim nor Middle Eastern many people in my life are and I love them.

That is the only reason I have taken to the internet to express my feelings and thoughts. I wish for peace for us all.

Goodbye.

Posted by BajaArizona | Report as abusive
 

Rex,

Sen Turk?

Posted by BajaArizona | Report as abusive
 

I’ve wasted too much time already talking to people who lack the ability to concede any point.
Posted by BajaArizona
==

You are giving up way too soon!! I enjoyed reading your posts, hang around and keep posting.

Especially you shouldn’t get frustrated by jihadi cowards, living on western dole somewhere! I am not referring to Umairpk.

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive
 

@Mr Arizona
I have not noticd any substance in your post, similar to many Sikh Indians,who are propagandists and on a daily basis squirt out venom against pakistan with references from the trash they read in daily papers. We are interested in the Pakistan blg to learn about the views of Pakistani citizens and not of Indians or americans. The American empire is crumbling like all empires do after a period and mostly due to their own doing. Pakistani citizens are also suffering not because of others fault but fault of their own Govt. which by any standard is not a democratic one. Americans are not homogenius people and are made up from varius people of the world. You cannot be against muslims, since the father of your President was a muslim.
whether you are an Indian or from africa or United Kingdom, you are definitely not from central europe who do no longer favour American values for humans any longer. Tony Blair and George W were the spin masters of the century, and not seventy years ago. I have nothing against Iranians whose Govt straightforwardly do not want to have diplomatic relations with the USA. What have you against Iranians? Three afro american came up the ladder in recent times, all of them have proven to be zeroes and let the afro american community down who waited so long for parity with the whites. Collin powel who lied before the world body, Condi Rice who proved to be a disaster in diplomacy and ofcourse the incumbent President who is not more than an imposter and is trying t prove that what george w did, he could do it more professionaly.

Now what was it which was botering you about Pakistan?

rex minor

Posted by pakistan | Report as abusive
 

Thanks for the encouragement netizen, but after pounding away furiously at my keyboard for a few years after 9/11, I realized that all I was doing was ruining my marriage and any sense of peace of mind. The internet brings out the worst in us sometimes, making it easy to deny each other’s humanity. Based on their views, I bet I would have no problem getting along with either rex or umairpk in person. I think we share the same values of peace and human dignity, but look how little progress we are able to make in finding any common ground.

I believe(!) that we humans believe what we believe based mainly on emotional reasoning, not deductive logic. We are bombarded with far too much information to process, so our brains give us neat little narratives sewn together from all the random pieces. Brain science has proven this over and over. Refer to the actions of the lower limbic during dreaming and in the processing of visual images for examples of this. Also refer to a study done during 2004 US presidential elections on the brains of committed partisans both Left and Right. When each person was given factual proof of their candidate contradicting themselves, they experienced a tumult of activity in their emotional reasoning centers only…the logical reasoning areas remained inactive. Then, when they were able to formulate a rationale for the contradiction, researches witnessed the emotional activity cease and a spike of activity in the pleasure center. So, when we are able to reject facts that fly in the face of our beliefs, we are actually rewarded with a “bump” of pleasure. I pretty much abandoned arguing against people’s beliefs at that point. Events have recently sucked me back in, but I need to stop now. I’m not likely to convince anyone and all I’m doing is riling up people I would probably like if I met them anyway.

Ok, this is really truly finally goodbye…Peace be with us all!

Posted by BajaArizona | Report as abusive
 

BajaArizona

Let us not loose hope, everyone in the world have basic human rights, be it American or Pakistani everyone deserves peace, dignity and freedom. I am sure the human spirit is strong enough to overcome these issues, America was attacked on 9-11 and came back much stronger. Pakistan too is under attack and we are in the middle of war, but we will come out of it.

Rex
I agree your statement is true, military ops in Tribal region means Pakistan’s military have made enemies. What is the solution? can you please suggest yopur views? Can we do a peace deal and hope that those who do not hesitate to blow up other people will mend their ways and come clean? What are Pakistan’s options? either we hit them hard or we make peace with them? Let me also tell you here the military helicopters dropped leaflets (message on papers) to tribal people letting them know they are patriotic Pakistanis and have no enmity with Army. Only the criminal elements holed up there were the target in military ops. The fallout? attacks on Pakistani cities? What is the way out?

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive
 

Thank you Umairpk. You have given me hope despite my gloomy outlook. Inshallah you and your family will be safe and see the end of this war someday. I’m deeply sorry for your suffering and the suffering of your country.

Posted by BajaArizona | Report as abusive
 

@Umairpk
The solutions are very simple, but difficult to implement. This is due to what we call here “Denk fehler”. The error in thinking, or perhaps misconception. you mentioned that there are criminals holed up there and I would say that there are no criminals among the tribes! The tribal system does not support criminal elements.The tribes live in the autonomous domain and Pakistan military has no jurisdiction over them. Their securiy system is a unique one, not allowing foreign elements in their territory without permission. When I say foreign, I mean any one who does not speak their language and the dialect. In other words a certain waziri subtribe would not permit any one from another waziri subtribe into their territory. Did you follow it? Ofcourse not, I do’nt either. Mr karzai cannot walk into its neighbouring tribe without permission. These no go areas are their stregnth and makes them invincible. Pakistan military tried to penetrate with force but they are no match for them. What the first military chief started in sixties was sez back by the last Indian born indian born Musharaf.

After Pakistan military intrusion in Swat I have postedon other blogs that Pakistan military has now taken on an opponent who would create havoc in cities and towns of pakistan. You could read the British experience in Warburton’s book, or in Arthur swinson book, North West Frontier 1839-1947. Like the Italian Mafia, they take revenge for every single casualty by the enemy.

You are talking about the group of tribes which are estimated around fourty to fifty million people, the largest in the world, and live in a territory of over 250,000 sq miles starting from Dir in the north, the triangular territory runs along the indus to dera Ismail khan o Queta, Pishin, chaman and Qandhar and then extends to Herat.

The tribesm are a source of stregnth for the integrity of Pakistan and pakistan military has bungled up. Has it never occured to you the reason of Indian bloggers encouragement for Pakistan military. In 1948 the tribal force at the request of Pakistan Govt ran over the entire Kashmir territory in less than seventy two hours, whereas, Pakistan military was not even prepared to move in and administer the territory after maharaja escaped.

Until the reality is realised by the Pakistan establishment, it took Russians to take years and the american Govt a decade, that the tribesmen are straightforward simple folk who love their freedom and independence as other folks of the world, the unrest and security lapse within Pakistan is not going to relax. War is the terror, was the poster being sisplayed after the attack.

Rex Minor

PS Like we say here, it is what it is, there is nothing we can do about it.

Posted by pakistan | Report as abusive
 

ISI is seriously tasting it’s own bitter medicine. There is another attack on police station, Taliban has stress targeting security forces specifically.Paks heavily financed and instructed terrorists to heavily target Indian military cantonments. Police in Kashhmir and Punjab.

Ilyas Kashmiri is replaying ISI instruction manual to Pasha. If they follow the trajectory tried by ISI in Kashmir, next step will be targeting of families, wives and children of Pak military.

ISI loved killing of young children and wives of Indian soldiers at their family quarters.

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive
 

Netizen

Your propaganda and spewing venom against ISI is useless and serves no purpose. So please give it a rest and stop the lies, ISI is a thoroughly disciplined organization reporting to Pakistan’s Prime Minister, it is Pakistan’s first line of defence tasked to identify and eliminate threats to national security. It is a secret service like any other, CIA, RAW, Mossad, MI6 or KGB. Nothing special about ISI.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive
 

“ISI is a thoroughly disciplined organization reporting to Pakistan’s Prime Minister”

–Posted by Umairpk

I bow to your sense of humor

Posted by punjabiyaar | Report as abusive
 

@umairpk

“Nothing special about ISI.”

But I thought they were the best in the world and were besting the CIA, etc.

So are they best or are they nothing special? Which is it?

Seems to me like your assessment of their capabilities is quite situational.

Netizen is not wrong in saying that the ISI is now reaping what it’s sowing. It’s quite well known that the ISI trained these jihadists. And their record on targetting civilians (not just in India by the way) is also well known. The ISI, perhaps, hoped to demoralize Indian security forces by targetting their families. Now the jihadists have decided to run that play on their Pakistani handlers.

Don’t get defensive. Some things are simply fact.

As for the ISI reporting to Pakistan’s Prime Minister…..Hahahaha. The rest of us are wondering if they even report to Kayani!

Posted by kEiThZ | Report as abusive
 

Netizen
Your propaganda and spewing venom
Posted by Umairpk
==

You mean like the “propaganda” you were angrily denying until 3 weeks ago that OBL is not in Pakistan ? ;-)

If the terrorists trained by ISI follow the instruction manual of ISI next step would be some thing like this:

http://www.nytimes.com/2002/05/15/intern ational/asia/15INDI.html?pagewanted=all

In the attack today, which took place at Kaluchak, on the outskirts of Jammu, Kashmir’s capital, the gunmen first opened fire on a busload of people, killing seven. They then dashed into the family quarters of an army camp, killing 23 more people, including 10 children, most of them 7 to 10, the police said. The assailants were killed by soldiers in an hourslong siege.

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive
 

Pakistan can have its state of the art fighter planes, reconnaissance crafts, bunkers, missiles, nukes and what not. But none of them will matter to the militants who are Pakistanis themselves and have no accountability. And rogue elements inside the so called “professional” ISI and the military are providing the necessary information for these militant groups to go after specific targets and wreak havoc. They are attacking the Pak military because they were betrayed by it by siding with the US in this famous war on terror. They too seem to be victims of duplicity by Pakistan’s military. Unlike the US, they are doing it in their own violent way. While Pakistan is being burnt from within, some of these morons are talking about India’s imagined offensive and tactical strategies on countering it.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive
 

Keith

“It’s quite well known that the ISI trained these jihadists”

-Don’t forget that it was the honourable highness CIA that “ARMED and FUNDED” the “jihadis” a.k.a Mujahideen. This deadly game was played in collusion with the CIA. Director William Casey flew directly from Langley Virginia to Chaklala Airbase with a US mid-air refueler tanker suppying fuel over Europe. The secret war was planned behind closed door meetings between William Casey and Gen. Akhtar then DG ISI.

“As for the ISI reporting to Pakistan’s Prime Minister…..Hahahaha. The rest of us are wondering if they even report to Kayani!”

-You are correct, no one really knows the S-Wing (Secret wing) and R-Wing (Operations wing) of the ISI, these are some of the deep cover units.
It is you who conveniently overlook the facts, what about Natl. security advisor Zibignew Brezinski addressing Mujahideen over Khyber pass telling them God is on their side. WOWWW!!!! American preaching JIHAD???? and Charlie Wilson’s war, the congressman got stingers for the Mujahideen. And Jalaludin Haqqani invited to Reagen whitehouse, does it get anymore ironic? No wonder ISI is what it is, and CIA is what it is suppose to be and both will continue to be so.

“Some things are simply fact.”

-Yes, I gues not some but quite a few things are simplay FACTS, biggest of them is CIA ran a clandestine war “Operation Cyclone” to fund, arm, train insurgents against Soviet Union in Afghanistan back in 1980s. All the rest are secondary problems. ISI became a state within a state only after it was used by CIA, no why complain?

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive
 

Keith

Wikileaks cables back in 2008 show Ambassador Patterson in Islamabad qouting a US Army colonel attending Natl. Defence University course in Islamabad. The word is a new generation of Pakistani military officers have now become hostile to America. Pakistan was subjected to sanctions, F-16s withheld, no officer training in US, in 1990′s mistrust started, After Soviet occupation ended in Afghanistan US left the region.

Come on take the challenge, what will be the policy now? Pakistan= doubole game? You take a side, either isolate Pakistan or continue to engage???? which side you are on?

Pakistan, in the meantime has already turned to China, offering a Naval base too and just got a bunch of 50 JF-17s as well.

China’s masterclass in schmoozing Pakistan

http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/0/cac10ffe- 8701-11e0-92df-00144feabdc0.html#axzz1NQ I4oXxR

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive
 

Keith

Let me rather suggest something better:
—————————————–

The world’s most dangerous border

To reduce the risk of terror, the West must help defuse tension between India and Pakistan

http://www.economist.com/node/18712525?s tory_id=18712525&CFID=171102330&CFTOKEN= 47596558

A rivalry that threatens the world

Pakistan’s dangerous fondness for jihadis, the Taliban and nuclear weapons is rooted in its fears of India

http://www.economist.com/node/18712274

Ok, so now the west does not have leverage on India. It can offer India civil nuclear sophisticated technology, it can pressure and arm-twist Pakistan. But India is growing power and have become untouchable?

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive
 

Umair: “The world’s most dangerous border

To reduce the risk of terror, the West must help defuse tension between India and Pakistan”

The border is dangerous because Pakistan has waged four wars. It has dug underground tunnels to reach into India. It has been belligerent and hostile. India’s military is there to protect its borders from any outside aggression. India has never attacked Pakistan. It has always been Pakistan initiated. Do the math. If you want tension to diffuse, change your stance and attitude. When Pakistan was formed, a fear psychosis was developed about India gobbling up Pakistan as it did not accept the two nation theory. It has been 6 decades. No one wants Pakistan. You are nuclear armed and have said many times that you will use the nukes in times of any war. India has not retaliated after your country went nuclear. Why would India be a threat anymore? Isn’t your lie obvious? You have said yourself that Indians do not have the balls to attack Pakistan. Then why worry about Indians at the border? Your country has more nukes than Britain now. So who is threatening whom? Who staged a Mumbai attack? Did India stage one? If you want tension to diffuse, stop throwing stones at your neighbor’s window first. Blaming them for defending themselves does not make sense.

“A rivalry that threatens the world”

Why should Pakistan, which is six times smaller than India, many times poorer, has to consider itself as an equal and a rival at that? Does Pakistan equate itself with China? India is considered as a rival to China? Where does Pakistan come from? Will you feel insulted if you are called a rival of Afghanistan?

“Pakistan’s dangerous fondness for jihadis, the Taliban and nuclear weapons is rooted in its fears of India”

It should be the other way around. Pakistan has gone insane and has armed itself with nukes, Jihadis and the Taliban. It has staged several terrorist strikes inside India, Mumbai attacks being the latest one. Shouldn’t India be the one worried and arm itself to the teeth? India is not doing any of that. It is building its economy instead. Pakistan dropped economic objective and stands naked with a gun on its hand.

This fear of India BS is getting stale. If this does not work, you guys bring the Kashmir issue or Gujerat or Indus water treaty. If nothing pans out, the India’s engagement in East Pakistan. When are you going to stop blaming others for your own mental sickness? Everything Pakistan does because of others. The problem is this – no one is buying this nonsense other than Pakistanis.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive
 

Arre Umairbhai,

How can the west defuse tension? India and Pakistan are trying and maybe not doing too well. To go into the reasons would take a whole book. Unless attitudes change, the west, chinese and russians put together will make no impression.

In fact, not wanting to labour the point but don’t you think both sides should want to clap? Besides all the problems of terrorsim do not hinge on the India and Pakistan relationship. That is a nice handle to hang on but thats all it is. I know he isnt very popular with you these days, but did you hear Obama’s comments on Pakistan’s obsession recently and how pointless it is.

Neither Afghanistan or the problem of terrorism will get sorted if and when India Pak relations become normal. That is a no brainer. Its just a convenient excuse and a never ending point of discussion to be held for the benefit of others.

I think we need to, at least now, be able to call a spade a spade and not shadow box around the centrality of terrorism and its nuisance to every country in the world. Those who nurture it are the biggest sufferers. So lets stop these endless and repetitious mind games. They no longer fool anybody.

Posted by DaraIndia | Report as abusive
 

Umair,

I’m not going to get into a deep discussion here. Quite frankly, you are not equipped for it.

I’ve made my points above about the institutional flaws in the Pakistani armed forces. Those views are actually shared by many Pakistani military personnel.

You can spew on randomness about aircraft systems and fighters and nukes. That’s brainless trash. Not defence policy and certainly not military doctrine.

Wars are fought by professionals who follow rules. Believe it or not, even Indian and Pakistani military officers on courses abroad get along quite well. They are professionals and can readily find common ground (which their less intelligent countrymen often cannot).

The points I have made above have nothing to do with specific systems being fielded. The arms race will always go on. What I am talking about are fundamental institutional flaws that severely impact the defence of Pakistan.

What do you think the impact is, of not promoting officers who fight in the FATA, or sending out Jawans and Frontier Corpsmen without flak vests and only sandals and WWII era rifles, while diverting US military aid to buy F-16s for the Indian border (yet, ironically, still spending too little on the PAF). Don’t believe me? Ask any PA officer, what is more rewarding career-wise: combat experience in the FATA or sun-bathing in Punjab along the Indian border.

You obviously don’t get the concept of opportunity cost. I’m not saying the Pakistani armed forces should ignore the Indian threat. I’m saying their policies are so screwed up they could not defend against India if they want to….let alone manage other threats. Choosing an Army-centric defence policy, means there isn’t enough money to field a modern air force or a potent Navy. It means Pakistan is actively choosing not to defend its SLOCs in any major conflict with India. Nobody is saying you have to field a Nimitz class aircraft carrier. And nobody is saying you have to field stealth bombers. But to not have a networked airspace management system and to not field a light aircraft carrier (like the Thai one), with 10-20 aircraft is a major flaw. If the Indians were smart, they would simply send the IAF out over the Arabian sea and then swing in, right past the border defences. After all, we now know that the PAF doesn’t really bother watching the Afghan border areas anyway. See what I mean?

And let’s not minimize those other threats. If Pakistan keeps ignoring those other threats, they’ll become another North Korea after the US leaves Afghanistan and the aid money dries up. You may have no problem with it. But I sincerely doubt that most Pakistani have North Korea as their ambition. Certainly, no Pakistani I’ve ever met thinks that the way to go.

Posted by kEiThZ | Report as abusive
 

As for the anti-western/anti-US turn of the military….

Personally, it’s something I’ve long been worried about. And certainly, analysts around the world are worried about it.

In the past, most Pakistani military officers got at least a course or two in the UK or the US, and more rarely in Canada and Australia. These courses provided exposure to the West, our politics, our value systems, our culture (the real kind…not the media showcase), etc. They helped to diffuse the ridiculous conspiracy theories that abound, they helped Pakmil officers understand the real interests that the West had in Pakistan and helped developed life long contacts. Heck, quite often, these courses also provided exposure to Indian officers too, providing some hope that this could be a foundation on which to build in a generation.

With the ’90s sanctions, training was reduced (or basically cut-off) and young Pakistani officers were left to stew in Pakistan. That’s what brings us to today.

I don’t think the anti-Western turn has to do with any thing concrete, in as much as it has to do with far less exposure to the West than young Pakistani officers used to receive.

But to blame the situation entirely on the West is unreasonable. You seem to forget why those sanctions were put in place to begin with. And you seem to forget why the Americans are still reluctant to do business today (Hint: might have something to do with Pakistan’s proliferation record).

Posted by kEiThZ | Report as abusive
 

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