Newly elected US President Barack Obama has now done better than British Foreign Secretary David Miliband. The latter equates Pakistan-sponsored terrorism with what he believes ?solving the Kashmir problem?. There is no ?Kashmir problem?. That is in the minds only of the anti-India bureaucrats who have long haunted the US States Department and the British Foreign Office. They were the ones, right from the start of 1948 who created the Kashmir ?problem?. It served them two purposes: One, to have a reliable ally in South Asia; another, to gain Pakistan'ssupport to contain?and finally destroy?the communist state of the Soviet Union. To achieve that end, both countries, in collision, were willing to hurt India to the extent possible. And that they did consistently and without batting an eyelid. Literally billions of dollars were showered on Pakistani Armed Forces without giving a single thought that the military supplies would invariably be used against India and India alone.
When President Eisenhower put forth the lame excuse that US guns were not meant to be aimed at India, it was V K Krishna Menon who acidly retorted that the United States had yet to manufacture a gun that could shoot only in one direction. Both the US and the UK in the past have been guilty of supporting dictatorial regimes in Pakistan whose sole aim was to destroy India with a thousand cuts. Now for Miliband to say that he has ?no evidence of the Pakistani state directing terrorist activities? means that he is either deliberately blind to realities or very poorly informed.
According to an article published in the latest issue of Power Politics, the ISI has circulated two maps among the Pakistani Armed Forces, one of which targets North India as the region which is expected to be converted into ?Islamic Republic of Pakistan?. Hasn'tMiliband heard of the ISI? A large part of every dollar or pound donated to Pakistan as economic aid goes to sustain the Pakistani Army'sterrorist organisations. If Obama and Miliband are not aware of that, they are doing their own country great disservice. For the former to say US military aid will only be given if Pakistan fulfils its obligation to contain terrorism is neither here nor there. Pakistan will turn to China.
Already it has said that it doesn'tneed Obama'sadvice. What comes as a shock is to learn that US Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman, democrat John Kerry wants his country to triple the current aid it gives to Pakistan. Pakistan deserves no aid. A high proportion of any aid, economic or otherwise, goes into Army?and later into terrorist?pockets. Pakistan's claim to Jammu & Kashmir rests on the theory that it has a Muslim majority. The facts show otherwise. Jammu has a large non-Muslim majority, as has Ladakh. That apart, after the Shimla Pact, Islamabad was duty bound to honour existing boundaries. It has consistently broken the Pact over the last decade. That calls for severe condemnation.
But more importantly, the very concept of the infamous Two-Nation Theory was thrown overboard the day Bangladesh was formed. After that, Pakistan has no business to raise the so-called ?Kashmir issue?. That issue has long been dead and buried. And now, after the December elections, the Kashmiri people have said in clear terms that they are more interested in getting access to water, electricity and housing, than in separatism. If Miliband doesn't know that, he needs to be educated. Linking terrorism with the so-called ?Kashmir Issue? is an excuse for the Pakistan Armed Forces to milk both the US and Britain, who have their own agenda. One can understand United States naivette.
But Britain should know from decades of colonial experience that Afghanistan is uncontrollable, as is the North West Frontier Province. Pakistan is a rump state. Its writ hardly runs in the Frontier and Tribal areas. Baluchistan is in no way better placed. And Sind would be happy to get out of Punjabi clutches. If Pakistan continues to exist, it is because the United States has a stake in it. The day the United States stops pampering Pakistan will be the day Pakistan collapses like a house of cards, unless China comes to its rescue.
If the United States and Britain want Pakistan to stand on its feet it is not out of any love for the Pakistani people but for strictly geopolitical reasons. If China is interested in keeping Pakistan alive, it is because of India. Keeping Pakistan at loggerheads with India serves Beijing'spurpose. If India and Pakistan come to terms, the losers will be China as much as the western powers led by the United States?and they know if full well. President Obama may sound demanding but, given Washington'scompulsions, he will have to keep Pakistan on his side. Whatever Obama may have in mind, his first priority will always be US interests and Islamabad knows how to cash in on it. If Washington walks out, Pakistan knows that it can always turn to its other patron, China, and China, one may be sure, will be only too willing to assume its new role in the sub-continent. The wise thing for the United States to do is to let Afghanistan stew in its own juice. Why blame the Taliban or al Qaeda when both are America'sown creations. As you sow, so you reap and presently the United States is reaping the poisonous crops whose seeds it had willingly planted.
Democracy cannot be imposed on Afghanistan, Baluchistan or North West Frontier Province, which have their own tribal culture which needs to be respected. They must be left to their fate? But where will that leave Pakistan whose pretensions to statehood to have been exposed time and again? All these fruitless years it has been run either by the Armed Forces with their medieval outlook or by feudal overlords like Zulfikar Ali Bhutto who held 12,000 acres of land in Larkana and ruled like a king. Legend had it that one could roam the countryside on horseback for an entire day and never leave Bhutto-owned property. If Pakistan has any wisdom, it will join India to form a sub-continental confederation, even while keeping its sovereignty intact.
Let it be remembered that at the Muslim League session held in Lahore in December 1924, it was resolved inter alia that ?the existing provinces of India shall be united under a common government on a federal basis so that each province shall have full and complete provincial autonomy, the functions of the central government being confined to such matter only as are of general and common concern?. Even as late as December 1932, the memorandum submitted by Muslim delegates at the Round Table Conference demanded a federal constitution and provincial autonomy and linked statutory majorities with a guarantee that ?the Muslims should form governments in those areas of North West and North East India where they had such majorities?. What was said in 1932 holds good to this day. Help promote confederation, Shri Miliband. That will be a win-win situation for all. Even for Obama'sUnited States. Pakistan can then live an independent but tension-free life aimed at prosperity for all forgetting its hate-filled subservient past and looking forward to a self-filling future of great and wondrous prospects.
The ISI has circulated two maps among the Pakistani Armed Forces, one of which targets North India as the region which is expected to be converted into ?Islamic Republic of Pakistan?. Hasn'tMiliband heard of the ISI? A large part of every dollar or pound donated to Pakistan as economic aid goes to sustain the Pakistani Army'sterrorist organisations. If Obama and Miliband are not aware of that, they are doing their own country great disservice.