No. It cannot and it will not, for using terror against neighbours has become part of Pakistan'sstrategy, clearly a foreign policy objective. It is war on the cheap. It is war by proxy. It is war for ever.
Mercenaries have always been part of Arab/ Islamic life. They can be traced back to pre-Islamic days. With no resource to talk of, the Arab lived by raiding neighbours and trading carvans. Mohammed gave them legitimacy. They were told that Allah understood their problem. He turned them into religious warriors (mujahideen) to serve his own ends?to spread Islam, to conquer Arabia and to fight against the ?infidels?. Mohd himself led 27 raids against his neighbours using the mercenaries.
Pakistan saw in the mujahideen the cheapest way to wage proxy wars without involving itself. The first such war was organised against Jammu and Kashmir in 1947.
It was then that Pakistan realised that the mujahideen could be put to myriad uses to advance the interests of Pakistan. It was a master strategy. It is still valid. India had nothing to counter it.
In 1965, thousands of mercenaries were mobilised to bring about an uprising in Kashmir. In the event, it failed.
In the early seventies, more thousands were trained in the madrassas for action in Afghanistan against the Marxist regime in Kabul. It became part of the Cold War. America pumped in millions of dollars to train and equip them. It was a war of Allah against ?godless communism?. The Taliban was born, thanks to America.
As the Russians withdrew from Afghanistan, the mercenaries became redundant. But they were soon hired for action in Jammu and Kashmir and Chechnya. Which is why America was deaf and dumb to India'spleadings. And it was a blessing to bin Laden too. He founded the al-Quaida, the terror outfit, practically with US money.
With the success of the mercenaries in Afghanistan against the Russians, Pakistan began to dream up ambitious ideas on using the mercenaries. For example, to annex Afghanistan and Jammu and Kashmir and to assert Pakistan'sleadership of the Muslim world. This called for a steady stream of mujahideen. This task was entrusted to the fundamentalist mullahs. Today it is the mullah who calls the tune in Pakistan!
Is this the Pakistan that Mohammed Ali Jinnah dreamt of? Pakistan was an opportunity to create and ideal Islamic state in the chaotic world of Islam. But look what the fundamentalists have created!
From fundamentalism to Talibanism to Jehadism-Pakistan's?progress? has been that of a rake.
Nawaz Sharif and Benazir Bhutto were not democrats. They had a hand in making Pakistan what it is today?a rogue state. Dawn, Pakistan'sleading daily, said of Sharif that he represented the hawkish Central Punjab ?Which since 1947 has been spoiling for a final round against India.? He knew all about Kargil. As for Bhutto, it was she who said that Islam has an ?unfinished business? to attend to ?namely to conquer the world for Islam. It was poetic justice that the Taliban hunted her down.
The crisis in Pakistan is its own creation. Hindus and Muslims need not have become two nations. The Muslims made them different. It is to this crisis that Najm Sethi referred in the course of a lecture he gave in Delhi. He said: ?After 50 years, Pakistan is unable to agree upon who we are as a nation, where we belong, what we believe in, where we want to go?? But the fundamentalists knew what they want. They want to convert Pakistan into a theocracy. Little do they realise that the world which could throw out the Nazis and communists will not find it difficult to deal with the fundamentalists.
Religion can be an opium to people. This is what happened to all the Semitic religions. They are all in a spiritual crisis. Nemesis has at last caught up with all.
Today 20 terrorists can hold up America to ransom. All its weapons will be of no avail. If they have brought themselves to this pass, it only shows that the Western civilisation cannot be trusted to lead mankind in the future.
Islamic fundamentalism is the new scourge of the earth. A former NATO Secretary General says: ?Islamic fundamentalism is at least as dangerous as communism was.?
Dear Reader, Pakistan is a failed state. Only an external force can bring about its renewal. Only America can take up that job.