By: Zubair Khan
This fact needs no emphasis that from the very outset, current People Party (PP) Government of Pakistan was asked to perform its duties in accordance with the tight compartment of rules and regulations set off by the General Head Quarters (GHQ). Go and no go areas were clearly demarked by Cief of Army Staff for the civil set up. In spite of all these restrictions, President Zardari and his comrades, intermittently, remain involved in acts paving the way to jump out of the compartment of “game rules” set off by GHQ. Unfortunately up till now no such attempt has met with success. As compared to other political parties, probably, it is somewhat in the blood of PP to keep on striving for absolute authority to run the affairs of the country. In the past ZA Bhutto, once visiting Staff College Quetta, gossiped in a circle that he will ensure to keep the Generals of Pakistan Army in their limits. Later the whole nation saw the limits of these generals and Bhutto was hanged. However encouraging aspect is that in spite of having concrete knowledge of unlimited powers of Pak Army Generals, “Jialaz” of PP keep on taking the chances to revolt against the untouchable military brass.
Due to strategic location and being an important country of the region, USA, UK and few Gulf countries since long have an effective role in formulation of governments in Pakistan. This fact is known to all the political parties as well to military top brass of Pakistan. Resultantly continuous efforts are made by political parties and military brass to have very cordial and close relations with these potential power centers. On the eve of OBL operation in Abbotabad, appreciating article by President Zardari, praising comments by PM Gilani, initiation of famous Mansoor Ejaz Memo and secret meeting of DG ISI with heads of concerned Gulf countries, to have their assessment for replacement of Mr Zardari, support above mentioned both viewpoints eg; continuous effort of PP to revolt against military brass and close relation of each state actor with potential power centers.
In currently ongoing tussle between civil and military state actors, in spite of sacrifice of Mr Haqqani, sudden exit of President Zardari from Pakistan clearly indicated the dissatisfaction of COAS, Gen Kiani. In ongoing matter he wanted the resignation of President also. However as stated earlier, “Jialas” of PP also have potentials to shake the atmosphere as such very amicably Baber Awan, through Bushra Gohar, and Raza Abidi were launched to counter attack. One took the military brass and asked the action against DG ISI, who, without legitimate authority, met with head of Gulf countries to get their assessment in proposed replacement of President Zardari. Similarly his London meeting with Masnoor Ejaz without prior permission of Supreme Commander of Armed forces was also challenged. On second front Abidi blasted at Chief Justice of supreme court and termed all higher courts as Chaudhry Courts with sole aim of slaughtering the PP leadership. These timely tactics of PP paid the dividends. COAS immediately organized three hours long meeting with PM and also made telephonic contacts with the President to ensure his safe passage back home. CJ will also now think many times prior to his decision about memo and OBL cases. It is expected that within couple of days working relations will again be in place among the Triangle of powerful state actors.
On internal front where powerful state actors are fighting with each other to prove ones supremacy, international actors on external fronts are playing entirely different game to further strangulate the life saving tubes providing some oxygen to deteriorating body of Pakistan. After having been totally disappointed with military and civil elite of Pakistan, USA, UK and Gulf countries have consented to attach their regional allegiance with India. Home ministry of India suddenly has become extremely active to share its new responsibilities of internal security in the region with special reference to homeland security of Afghanistan. Simultaneously details have deliberately been leaked to media about the new strategy of USA for the area. According to these leaked reports American lawmakers have said due to a dead end of relationship with Pakistan, there is a sense among congressmen/parliament members that time has come to “side” with India to “cut off the ISI”. Few senators/parliament members said at a discussion forum by prestigious Washington-based think tank, Foreign Policy Initiative that a US-India tie-up was ISI’s “horror story” but time has come for it to evolve.
These lawmakers further commented “you know, Yogi Bear said when you reach a fork in the road, take it. We think we hit the fork in the road in August and September between the United States and Pakistan. We saw a large truck bomb assembled, lit off next to a US base, 77 US casualties,” senators/lawmakers said. In recent times US’ ties with Pakistan, a key ally in the region, have plunged to an all-time low following a series of incidents over the year, including the killing of two people by a CIA contractor, the Abbottabad raid, and finally the NATO airstrike that killed 24 Pakistani soldiers. “Our sense of the Senate and probably the House are we’re ready to take that fork in the road. We’re ready to side with India, to cut off the ISI,” the senators/lawmakers said. “It appears to us the Pakistani horror story of us siding with India should now evolve. Pakistan has decided we’re leaving. Pakistan has decided that they can cripple the civilian government. The United States, senators/lawmakers said, needs a stable party in the region who has a status quo pro-civilian anti-terror interest, which is India. “Get in with the Indian Intelligence Service, the Indian Chief of Staff, bring Indian, not just economic but military assistance on line, and build some long relationships so that in the mid-presidential term next time, the 2014 time frame, you have a steady partner with new money coming on the table that can send an important signal to Afghanistan,” senators and lawmakers said. Such are the startling revelations, currently coming from USA.
Being a true Pakistani when one analyzes the ongoing internal and external affairs and how our civil and military leaders are dealing with both matters, a bold worded writing on the wall appears explicitly stating a very dangerous scenario for Pakistan. And this clear cut writing on the wall only adds to existing sadness and frustration of each Pakistani. It is a known fact that now for many years military, basing on his self conceived threat strategy, is actually ruling the country, which was and still contrary to the fact that people of Pakistan always gave this mandate to their elected representatives. What outcome military rule has brought to the nation needs no repetition. At every tragic occasion civil elite has always blamed military brass for the tragedy. Partition of country in 1971 was the height of it. Each aspect of national phenomenon demands a limit. Probably now the phenomenon of military rule has also reached its limits. One can hear very loud and clear voices condemning the unlimited military power in the national affairs and all are demanding end to this trend and practice. With very heavy heart and keeping in mind the deepest sympathy for the mother land, COAS of Pakistan Army is very humbly requested to please consider it as, “enough is enough” and let the elected representative of nation to deal with the state affairs. Let civil elite to make an appraisal of security threats and please give freedom to civil government to formulate security and foreign policies of Pakistan. Please be wise enough to read “Writing on the Wall,” least history may include your name also among generals, in whose era Pakistan was further damaged.