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Reinstalling the Cartel of Thugs in Pakistan

The US leadership is jilted with Imran Khan over his soft-pedaling of the Taliban and refusal to provide military bases to the US. Perhaps they ignore the fact that Imran Khan’s stance on the Afghan Taliban has the backing of Pakistan’s military establishment. It was the Pakistan army that was facilitating the US-Taliban meetings in Doha.

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14 October 2021: Charge d Affaires of the US mission in Pakistan Angela Aageler separately met PML(N) leaders Shehbaz Sharif and Maryam Nawaz in Lahore. The meetings took place at Shehbaz Sharif’s and Maryam’s Model Town and Jati Umra residences respectively.

The statements issued by Model Town and Jati Umra reflected the perceptions of their inhabitants. These statements also reinforced the fact that the human imagination sees what it wants to see –The brain takes messy, incomplete input and turns it into a meaningful and complete picture. The mind also sees patterns in random data, which is why the sky is speckled with bears, fish, turtles, bulls, and any other shape the ancients could imagine while looking at various constellations.

Read more: Pakistani politics in crises?

The statement issued from Model Town said:

“Charge’ Aageler praised Shehbaz Sharif’s services as Punjab Chief Minister. The meeting also discussed the steps taken under the leadership of Mian Nawaz Sharif to end load-shedding, fight against terrorism, and economic development during the PML(N) era.”

According to the statement issued from Jati Umra:

‘During the meeting, the issues of national interest were discussed. The current political situation in the country, Pak-U.S. relations, global and regional peace and security, and the situation in the region and Afghanistan, in particular, were also discussed.”

The US diplomatic mission, however, restricted itself to issuing two Tweets through the US Consulate General in Lahore, One of these Tweets stated:

“USCharge’dAffaires Angela P. Aageler visited the Wazir Khan Mosque and Chowk. The U.S. mission to Pakistan has donated approximately PKR 239 million toward the restoration of Wazir Khan Mosque and the surrounding buildings”.

The other Tweet stated:

“Charge ’Aageler said these projects serve as an enduring sign of respect the US has for the Pakistani people and Culture”. 

Is Uncle Sam, rebuffed by Imran Khan, in quest of a Pakistani Ashraf Ghani?

The US leadership is jilted with Imran Khan over his soft-pedaling of the Taliban and refusal to provide military bases to the US. Perhaps they ignore the fact that Imran Khan’s stance on the Afghan Taliban has the backing of Pakistan’s military establishment. It was the Pakistan army that was facilitating the US-Taliban meetings in Doha. These meetings started during the Nawaz government.

As for the military bases, Pakistan is a Major Non-NATO Ally (MNNA) of the US and was thus committed to providing its airspace to the U.S. military aircraft during the US invasion of Afghanistan. Technically, the US air corridor linking Afghanistan with airbases in Qatar still exists. The corridor was fully operational until sometime after the US withdrawal. That is how the US military aircraft had evacuated the remnants of American forces from Afghanistan.

Read more: Horse trading and dirty politics of PPP & PML N

There exist major causes of friction between the U.S. and the present government in Pakistan. These are the causes for which the wounded US giant wants to punish Imran Khan. His refusal to toe the US line on Ukraine and his visit to Russia is the recent irritants in US-Pakistan relations.  It is a throwback to the 1960s when, in the wake of the 1965 War between India and Pakistan, the US was angry with President Ayub Khan and wanted to punish him for starting the war by abetting the freedom fighters in India Held Kashmir. The 1965 War, as perceived by President Johnson, had upset the US apple cart in the Subcontinent.

In retrospect, one understands how the interests of India, the erstwhile Soviet Union, the U.S., and the power-hungry Bhutto and Mujib had coincided in 1970. The U.S. and India are definitely in cohorts to re-enact the 71 war drama?

All the Pakistani politicians and military rulers, starting from Ayub Khan, down to  ZAB, Zia, Benazir, Nawaz, and Zardari, came to power by concluding some sort of understanding or deal with the US. All of them, backed by the International Deep State, performed according to their abilities and were shown the door when they had either outlived their utility, become too big for their shoes, or earned enough money to last for a lifetime.

This is what happened in the recent past with the Sharifs and Zardari

Pakistan Army, the “Keeper of Pakistan’s Holy Grail”, is on “Radio Silence” – a military term used to denote the silence that is maintained on wireless conversation till the attacking troops cross the start-line.  The present internal situation in Pakistan, impacted by external pressures, will result in the elimination of the entire political leadership that today rules the country or benefits from the political system directly or indirectly. It will be replaced by a new crop that understands and is capable of standing up to the challenges that Pakistan is going to face in the remaining part of the 21st Century. If history is not to be limited to mere teaching in educational institutions, now is the time to learn from our experience and not to repeat our past mistakes.

Read more: Applying game theory to Pakistan’s politics

Henry Kissinger wrote:

“ One of the BIG blunders America made in Afghanistan was India. That India and NDS was a cartel of thugs that plundered American taxpayers’ money and lied about everything including Pakistan. In the end, the truth always prevails”.

Are the Americans thinking about replacing Imran Khan with a pliable leader – another Ashraf Ghani? A Pakistani Cartel of Thugs?

 

Saleem Akhtar Malik is a Pakistan Army veteran who writes on national and international affairs, defense, military history, and military technology. He Tweets at @saleemakhtar53. The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Global Village Space.