The US policy of carrot to bring Pakistan to negotiating table in Afghanistan’s context badly bogged down. It was wrong expectation to ask someone to throw gold and guns in the fast flowing river . The sole super is expected to take bold step like the US took in Suez Canal crisis that was not to be. The sole super power was following an apologetic Lukewarm approach to Pakistan in relation to Afghanistan’s intricate problem knowing that Pakistan guiding principle is duality and deceit. It has put the credibility of the US at stake.
Afghanistan being a war torn country with no infrastructure could hardly sustain aggression while concurrently insurgency was going on with unwavering support of Pakistan’s establishment . What was holding Afghanistan intact was the intrinsic strength of the Millat? But to wean off the United States from Politico strategic importance of Pakistan proved to be impossible task.
The US failed to understand that her softly-softly attitude may cost her a lot in the League of Nations and the subsequent vacuum produced will be filled by others regional powers looking for regional hegemony and if succeed which will shatter the image of a sole superpower. A lot of work was done & theories constructed during Bush and Clinton days not to allow another opportunity for the re-emergence of another super power ( The Envoy). Everyone realize the importance of strategic location of Pakistan but no one could accept it complete, without peace in Afghanistan. It was a sort of decapitated strategically important conduit.It Could assume that importance if had access to central Asia. The dragging feet approach to a burning issue robbed the regional states of confidence. The point in focus is the regional connectivity and trade conference at Islamabad and at the same time sealing of the Pak-Afghan border that created humanitarian crisis was not considered worth mentioning in the communique.The usual double standard.
After the killing of Mullah Mansoor and refusal of the coalition support fund Pakistan struggled to come out of isolation. To the good luck of Pakistan the world had assumed the shape of a multi pollard globe where everyone wanted to strengthen her politico- strategic grip in their own sphere.
In Axis of three, four, CPEC, Shanghai conference Pakistan was quick to find the friends. The powers like Russia and China had their own agenda it was an Eastern Alliance to stop American expansion in the Far East and to get out of the siege. But ironically the battle field chosen was Afghanistan. Revenge of Afghanistan debacle by the then USSR has to be taken in Afghanistan. Putin was the old player in new uniform. If the intention were good of the three there would not have been three meetings of Russian Republic, China and Pakistan to discuss the peace in Afghanistan. Apart from intervention in the internal affairs of Afghanistan it was stinking conspiratorial by keeping Afghanistan and the USA out of the ring. That was to attack Afghanistan and American men sitting there. Logically there is no other explanation.The three have a mindset and none has a past record which can be termed brilliant. PAkistan in Baluchistan and FATA, Chinese in Western districts and Russia in Armenia. Their power play does not believe in borders. Syria was reduced to rubble. The CPEC visible manifestations are more strategic rather than economic.
While the US forces are still sitting there it was stark reminder to the USA about Syrian Scenario. In the axis of three to keep the US & Afghanistan out of the ring speaks volume. CPEC and Gawadar and all strategic fanfare is to convey the message,” To Whom it May Concern” that the route to Far East goes through South West Asia apart of Middle East energy factor.
Afghanistan is not a cake without an owner. We are 70 million Afghan and second big ethnic race of after Russian. Many superpowers have burnt their fingers here. Afghans have one mindset to deter the aggression. These two diagonally opposed theories of occupation and deterrence have always been at loggerhead in this part of the world. We have partially escaped in two world war but became the victim of the bloody drama that started 42 years ago.
I have no intention to shift all responsibilities to the US. We have not played our cards wisely, nor we have weeded out corruption? We have not delivered to the people but still I have faith in my nation that they will rise to the occasion.
There was a lot of work to keep the world uni-polar and let not another super power emerge. (The Envoy) To have the desired result one has to prove that the uni-polar world is more peaceful and more prosperous. And not allow the humanity to suffer for the sake of momentary strategic gains. The super has a stature but has responsibility as well. Halfhearted attempts for peace or war always have horrific repercussions.
The blood let going on throughout the world has forced the opinion makers and intellectual to think once again of renaissance of counter devil theory. Time will it prove its worth but should not be discarded out rightly. Ironically the new alliances cropping up like mushroom but are poisonous. They are revenge based not peace or prosperity based so is the reservation of small nations. The actors are tried one.
I am not advocator of violence and heavy handedness. What I mean to say that what could be achieved by strong financial arm twisting probably will be more difficult.
Writer: Prof.(Dr) Khurshid Alam
The writer is a columnist with THE PASHTUN TIMES. He can be reached at
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