Although the US has failed to win war in Afghanistan, it has succeeded in achieving most objectives it had chalked out in September 2001 against Pakistan through covert war. As against the advice of India, the US desisted from applying direct strategy due to Pakistan’s nuclear capability. The US and its strategic partners therefore embarked upon a well-thought plan to gradually weaken Pakistan and its institutions politically, socially, economically and militarily to such an extent that it becomes powerless and either voluntarily hands over the keys of its nuclear arsenal in return for aid for its survival or else it becomes so paralytic that it is unable to respond when nuclear arsenal is physically struck. Besides denuclearization, other major objectives were to make Pakistan forget about Kashmir and to accept India’s hegemony. Progress so far made by adversaries of Pakistan is listed as under:
- Weight of the war on terror has been craftily shifted from Afghanistan to Pakistan.
- The people of northwestern tribal belt that were always regarded as our assets and had guarded our western border without any assistance from armed forces have turned hostile and a segment among them in its misplaced belief of establishing a caliphate is towing the agenda of adversaries of Pakistan.
- The western border that had become safe from 1989 onwards during the Mujahideen rule followed by Taliban rule in Kabul has once again become unsafe and has assumed dangerous proportions due to presence of US-NATO forces in Afghanistan and their mounting aggressiveness.
- Peaceful and docile Balochistan is up in arms and rebellious Baloch nationalists are demanding independent Balochistan. Non-locals have migrated in huge numbers.
- Indian influence in Afghanistan that had vanished during Taliban rule has returned to haunt Pakistan. The US is striving to make India a key country in the region after its departure from Afghanistan. Indian and Israeli presence in Afghanistan has posed a two-front threat to Pakistan’s security.
- Volatile forces are active in whole of FATA, several parts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, and Balochistan. Sindh is also restive and Karachi has become a killing field for target killers while southern Punjab is fast falling into the loop of Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan.
- CIA, FBI, MI-6, agents have made deep inroads in government departments, legal fraternity and media while RAW and Blackwater have established networks in all the troubled regions of Pakistan. RAW’s involvement in Gilgit and CIA’s penetration within armed forces are latest revelations.
- Under a planned strategy, India has been given a go-ahead to construct large number of dams on all the rivers flowing into Pakistan to create acute water scarcity in Pakistan and make it dependent upon India. Water strategy will be applied by India to solve Kashmir dispute on Indian terms.
- Kashmir is almost a lost cause and talks are at best confined to confidence building measures only. Arrest of Kashmiri leader Ghulam Nabi Fai in USA is aimed at breaking the unarmed resistance movement of Kashmiris seeking right of self determination.
- A large part of Pakistan’s Army, paramilitary forces and police have got deeply embroiled in fighting its own people on own soil with little hope of extrication in near future.
- While precious military resources of Pak Army are being wasted out in futile war on terror, Indian military conventional and nuclear capabilities have been vastly upgraded to outclass Pakistan’s military capability and also weaken its nuclear deterrence value.
- Application of indirect strategy by our adversaries to weaken Pakistan from within has rendered our nuclear deterrence redundant.
- Pakistan has been gifted with NRO cleansed leaders who are totally subservient to the wishes of Washington.
- The US administration has tightened its iron grip over the ruling regime to an extent that it treats Pakistan as its 51st state.
- The rulers have on several occasions declared that Pakistan faces no threat from India. This change of mindset in respect of archrival which yearns to put Pakistan in the shredding machine is a drastic transformation which the US could only do.
- Pakistan is US ally and is not at war with USA but is being subjected to drone attacks, threats, covert war and negative propaganda which have fuelled extremism, terrorism and anti-Americanism.
- Pro-American elements enjoying strong influence in Pakistan and foreign funded NGOs are giving a helping hand to USA in achieving its objectives. The US funded print and electronic media persons are providing full assistance to Indo-US-Western media onslaught to harm the reputation of Army and ISI.
- The premier institutions of Army and ISI are under intense pressure due to their dual responsibility of guarding the frontiers and dealing with foreign inspired internal threat and at the same time facing the brunt of Indo-US-western propaganda campaign. Full blasted efforts are in hand to declare ISI as a rogue outfit, weaken the trunk of the Army and to spoil civil-military relations.
- Higher education has been secularized and private English medium schools and colleges of repute funded by the west are promoting western values and undermining Islamic values. Promotion of unethical gay and lesbian culture by US Embassy in Islamabad is one example of cultural invasion to pollute Islamic values.
- Madaris and mosques, the two basic institutions of Islam are being systematically weakened to contaminate morals and Islamic values.
- Islamic-secular divide has been sharpened and so is the religious divide as in the case of antagonism between Deobandis and Barelvis. Mosques, shrines and places of worship are targeted by foreign agents to defame Islam and to discourage people from religion.
- Pakistan economy has become dependent upon US controlled IMF thereby impacting the dignity, honor and sovereignty of the nation.
- Pakistan is politically polarized and webbed in curses of provincialism, ethnicity and sectarianism.
- Rampant corruption which is eating into the vitals of the nation together with plunder of national wealth by US selected rulers has reduced the country to a carcass.
Amidst the murky environment in which everything looks depressing, the redeeming features are that the higher judiciary has become an effective restraining body to checkmate unbridled wrongdoings of the rulers and elites and is doing its best despite huge constraints to maintain some semblance of rule of law.
The civil society and the youth have got activated and are deeply concerned with the malaise afflicting the society due to visionless, corrupt, effete and inefficient ruling class and are keen to get rid of status quo and bring a healthy change. Tehrik-e-Insaf under Imran Khan has emerged as a new political force in urban areas.
Love for Islam has increased rather than decreased and mosques remain filled with worshippers.
Armed forces are resolutely confronting the internal and external challenges. They are focused on defeating the nefarious designs of Pakistan’s adversaries and on protecting the honor, dignity and sovereignty of the country at all costs.
The Army has gained a decisive edge over all insurgents in Swat region and in FATA, and rebels in Balochistan are being effectively dealt by the paramilitary forces.
Raymond Davis and 02 May incidents were shocking but in a way proved to be blessings in disguise. It helped our military in getting out of the magic spell of USA and is no more taking western border for granted. The heads of three services and ISI are now alive to the reality that the US pretending as Pakistan’s friend and well-wisher is in actuality working on an agenda to denuclearize and balkanize Pakistan so as to make India the unchallenged power of South Asia.
Instead of wasting time and effort in convincing Hussein Haqqani and Rahman Malik to take steps to roll back the American intrusion into Pakistan’s domestic affairs, both Gen Kayani and Lt Gen Pasha have undertaken emergency measures to block CIA’s perverse influence which has spread like wild weeds all over the country. Undesirable undercover CIA operatives and trainers have already been sent home and others are being pushed out. Three US military intelligence liaison centers in Peshawar and Quetta have been closed. CIA’s Station Chief Jonathan Banks and now his successor Mark Carlton coordinating clandestine network have departed.
Several CIA informants who helped CIA and US Navy Seals in conducting helicopter assault in Abbottabad have been detained for interrogation and are not released despite US mounting pressure. At the same time a close watch is being kept on MI-6 inspired members of Hizbul Tahrir and their efforts to create divisions within forces.
To accuse that Gen Pasha has sanctified 87 visas for Americans on his last visit to USA is fallacious since he has nothing to do with issuance of visas. The ISI gives the security clearance only, and this practice which had been discontinued on express wish of Haqqani has been reintroduced. All Americans coming to Pakistan will not come under fake identities, but will give full details of their background and employment for the information of ISI. No American can now travel from one city to the other without the knowledge and clearance of ISI.
ISPR and patriotic elements have done well in minimizing programmed efforts of bad hats in media to undermine civil-military relations by confronting their negative propaganda.
It is heartening to note that our nuclear and missile assets under Strategic Force Command are in secure hands and these have been made more potent. All the contingencies plans made by Indo-US-Israeli nexus to snatch-and-grab our nukes are wishful paper exercises and far from reality.
Kashmir cause is very much alive and Kashmiris as well as Pakistan are sticking to the principle of right of self determination to settle the chronic dispute which has bred extremism and instability in the region. India has been unable to pullout a single soldier out of its over 700,000 troops deployed in occupied Kashmir.
India has resumed dialogue with Pakistan on equal terms and not on its dictated terms.
Afghan Taliban have avenged the death of OBL by downing US Chinook helicopter carrying 31 US soldiers including 25 US Navy SEALs who had conducted Abbottabad operation. It will hasten drawdown of troops from Afghanistan.
About the Writer: Asif Haron is a retired Brig and author of several books and a defence analyst. Email:[email protected]
Brig Asif Haroon Raja an Member Board of Advisors Opinion Maker is Staff College and Armed Forces WarCoursequalified, holds MSc war studies degree; a second generation officer, he fought epic battle of Hilli in northwest East Bengal during 1971 war, in which Maj M. Akram received Nishan-e-Haider posthumously.
He served as Directing Staff Command & Staff College, Defence Attaché Egypt and Sudan and Dean of Corps of Military Attaches in Cairo. He commanded the heaviest brigade in Kashmir. He is lingual and speaks English, Pashto and Punjabi fluently.
He is author of books titled ‘Battle of Hilli’, ‘1948, 1965 & 1971 Kashmir Battles and Freedom Struggle’, ‘Muhammad bin Qasim to Gen Musharraf’, Roots of 1971 Tragedy’; has written number of motivational pamphlets. Draft of his next book ‘Tangled Knot of Kashmir’ is ready.
He is a defence analyst and columnist and writes articles on security, defence and political matters for numerous international/national publications.