On foreign policy, Jinnah had said: America needs Pakistan more than Pakistan needs America. Pakistan is the pivot of the world, as we are placed — he revolved his long forefinger in bony circles — ‘[on] the frontier on which the future position of the world revolves.’
Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah was a visionary leader, he can foresee, which ordinary people could not imagine. He has seen the world and based on his wisdom, he predicted that Pakistan is a pivot state and it proves true.
Understanding US reliance on Pakistan
The US was always the beneficiary of its relations with Pakistan. During the cold war era, Pakistan stood with the US and protected its strategic interests. During the 1980s, the Afghan war was won against USSR occupation, was due to Pakistan’s support and sacrifices. War on terror, again it was Pakistan, who stood with the US shoulder to shoulder.
As long as Pakistan was ensured that the US will achieve its strategic goals in this part of the world. The true potential of Pakistan is well understood in the US, especially, the US military leadership.
Unfortunately, the US shifted its focus from Pakistan to India and ignored Pakistan. As a result, India gained huge economic, political, and diplomatic concessions and benefits. The US oped its doors for India in the field of civil nuclear technology, hi-tech, sensitive technologies, and modern advanced weapons. India enjoyed trade concessions and market access to the US. In a matter of fact, India has become the largest beneficiary of US-Aid and assistance just after the state of Israel.
India and US: the beginning of a new friendship
Even, the US involved India in Afghanistan, but, India utilized this opportunity too and gained economic benefits by getting projects in Afghanistan. India availed the opportunity and promoted trade by exporting Indian products and exploiting Afghan natural resources. India used this opportunity and used Afghanistan as a base to launch terrorism in Pakistan. GOP has submitted an irrefutable dossier on Indian involvement in terrorism in Pakistan.
However, after signing several defense strategic agreements with India, and declaring as a Major Defense Partner, the US lost almost all wars, and battles on all fronts in this region. Either Afghan debacle or Iran issue, or the Arab world, the US is a loser on almost all fronts. The US may repent and review its partnership with India in full spectrum. It is up to the US thinkers, policymakers, think tanks, and advisors to assess its relations with India and determine its future course.
Pakistan as a new hub of diplomatic activities
However, in recent weeks, Pakistan has become the hub of diplomatic activities and many foreign ministers and senior government representatives from the Western world have been to Pakistan either physically or virtually. The meeting of international intelligence in Pakistan is also part of such diplomatic activities.
It is understood very well that no other country understands Afghanistan, because Pakistan shares mountains, rivers, borders, culture, traditions, history, religion, and language with them. Pakistan understands the tribal society and unique social setup of Afghanistan. No other country can understand Afghan better than Pakistan. That is why, most of the Western world is depending on Pakistan, while Pakistan is playing the role of gateway to Afghanistan. Pakistan has played a similar role in the 1970s to pave for US-China relations.
Pakistan’s support is decisive to make or break in international politics. It is time for our leaders to understand Pakistan’s true potential and may not sell cheap. Pakistan is facing severe challenges, like FATF, GSP Plus, IMF, and economy, international diplomacy and politics, etc. It is desired that Pakistan, may struggle to resolve all its challenges, including Kashmir, etc before extending any assistance.
We may need to strengthen our Government domestically so that they can deliver on the international arena. Keeping internal differences aside for the time being and focus on the available opportunities in the international arena. The nation must be united and a collective struggle will bring Pakistan out from the severe crisis being faced. We can not afford to miss opportunities forever. It is expected that the Government will use the appropriate experts to engage with their respective counterparts to achieve desired results.
Prof. Engr. Zamir Ahmed Awan, Sinologist (ex-Diplomat), Editor, Analyst, Non-Resident Fellow of CCG (Center for China and Globalization), National University of Sciences and Technology (NUST), Islamabad, Pakistan. He can be reached at email@example.com. The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect Global Village Space’s editorial policy.