Monday, December 8, 2008


Pakistan’s Impulsive Diplomacy

The Mumbai attacks are over. Unfortunately the epitome was not the grieving over the innocent lives lost, but the spontaneous reaction of Indians from all walks reaching firm conclusions even before the sites had finally been cleared and sanitised. Three teams from Israel, USA and UK were there in no time, though some reports suggest they were already there and deemed it opportune to offer a helping hand as early as the blame on the culprits was fixed. The Indian secret services and investigating agencies a la Mumbai movie hero in contrast to earlier sluggishness instantly awoke from the slumber and efficiently caught up with the most crucial information. In contrast, despite such accurate information of the entire terror plot, it took India over four days to determine the exact strength of the attackers that fell from forties to ten.

Usually, I write objectively with reason and logic. However such has been the charade of anti Pakistan propaganda by India and US establishment, that I see sarcasm the only recourse to rebuttal.

I was most amused to hear the US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice say that Pakistan needed no evidence to apprehended the Mumbai culprits as sufficient information was already available. By saying so, she has put the cart before the horse and conclusions are foregone. The Mumbai attacks were planned, rehearsed and directed from Pakistan and it is now up to Pakistan to prove its allegiance to the WOT by extending Civil War within Pakistan, ceding nuclear control and ultimately getting disintegrated. There appear no choices and trade offs.

Earlier, while leaving USA, she made a clear reference to India as an ally, bound by a treaty. Needless to mention, that this was a rejoinder to the Indo US Nuclear Treaty whose preamble and objectives seek a joint cooperation and action against terrorism and proliferation. Thus by implication, a terror attack against India is also an attack against USA. The conclusion is that the subject treaty extends the umbrella of American Nuclear Deterrence to India. If that be it, then Pakistan’s declared nuclear policy is now a direct threat to USA.

In Pakistanis, the establishment needs to get out of its state of denial and begin to realise that they are actually hares trying to hunt with the hounds. Impulsive statements and actions of the key statesmen were most damaging and allowed India and Condoleezza Rice to pre-empt issues such as Non Sate Actors, evidence and Pakistan’s security concerns. Knowing that Pakistan was already placed in the box, this incident and errors by statesmen have pushed Pakistan into the corner of the box. Coincidently, this incident is also timed with a view of US assessments that Pakistan is the next cross road of WMD. It was indeed naïve and painful to see the President of Pakistan seek cooperation of its neighbours (India) and friends in this regard during his talk with Larry King. If this be it, it strengthens my earlier assertion that Pakistan appears a rudderless derelict ship loaded with a nuclear cargo complying with every crest and wave.

There are also reports that USA is considering to declare at least four retired officials of ISI as international terrorists through the UN Security Council. A similar leak also alleges that Ex ISI and military officers of Pakistan actually trained the Mumbai Terrorists. So what of Pakistan embroiled in a Civil War, curtailed Intelligence Agencies and a Non Capable Nuclear Arsenal?

In the days to come, Pakistan will remain under sharp scrutiny on three counts.

First, how effectively Pakistan fights against the militants beyond FATA in Punjab. This has serious implications for national security?

Secondly, what mechanism is put in place to assert effective controls over Pakistan’s nuclear capability? The implication is that in US assessments, Pakistan’s nuclear capability already stands de graded and therefore unwanted.

Thirdly, degrade Pakistan’s counter terrorism intelligence networks with the implication that Pakistan disown in letter and spirit, its sympathy with the Pashtun resistance in Afghanistan. The case is then ready for a greater Pashtun cause that could hypothetically lure the romantic militant Pashtun on both sides of the Durand Line.

The all Parties Conference despite being a rare show of national unity is most likely to see the same fate as many such pluralistic declarations. Behind the counter, sinister plots would continue. The question is till when?

Does Pakistan need a Place de la Bastille?

Brigadier (r) Samson Simon Sharaf

No comments:

Post a Comment