PROFESSOR ALI SUKHANVER
The Boston Review published an article of C. Christine Fair on 16th of last October with the title, Is Pakistan in ISIS’ Crosshairs? C. Christine Fair is a well known American analyst on South Asian political and military affairs and a member of the International Institute of Strategic Studies as well as of the Council on Foreign Relations. She is also a senior fellow with the Counter Terrorism Center at West Point. She is considered a very staunch advocate of the US policies in the South Asian Region. The article says, ‘Pakistan has long been home to international terrorists, including al-Qaeda and the masterminds of 9/11, as well as the Taliban and numerous other Islamist militant groups. According to C. Christine Fair ‘Militants are a fundamental component of the country’s foreign policy, and Pakistan’s army and intelligence organizations have developed a virtual zoo of Islamist militants of varying creeds to conduct operations in India and Afghanistan. Coupled with Pakistan’s history of nuclear proliferation, this makes for a toxic cocktail of concern.’
Fortunately or unfortunately, a few weeks back, the Indian Home Minister Rajnath Singh issued a statement bearing the same underlying message. Talking to the audience at a summit organized by a leading newspaper of India he said, ‘Terror in India is not home-grown but sponsored by the neighbouring country.’ He rejected Islamabad’s contention that non-state actors were behind the terrorism. “I want to ask Pakistan: Is ISI also a non-state actor,” he said. In his address, he linked the ISI with supporting terrorists, ranging from Osama bin Laden to Hafiz Saeed and underworld don Dawood Ibrahim. He said, “Who helped Osama bin Laden? Who is helping Hafiz Saeed? We have requested Pakistan to act against them but they drag their feet. So we say that terrorism is completely Pakistan-sponsored.” In short the article of C. Christine Fair and the statement of Rajnath Singh proved one thing very clearly that US and India are trying their ultimate best to paint Pakistan as a terrorists-supporting country. This joint-venture is not limited only to writing articles and releasing statements. The US and Indian media is also lending a full support to this blame-game against Pakistan. On 7th of December a few so-called Afghan students gathered there in front of the Capitol Hill Washington and demanded the US Congress cut all military funding to Pakistan. They were holding placards bearing anti-Pakistan slogans: ‘Stop Making Human Bombs from Children’ and ‘ISI! Stop killing Afghans.’ The US media gave full rather undue coverage to this protest. A leader of the protestors Habiba Ashna said talking to the MintPress, “We want the international community to stop funding Pakistan under the name of the war on terror and to stop supporting terrorists in the region.” According to the details there were some Indian students also in the protest. A protestor, who wished not to be named, referred to the history of alleged support the Pakistan army and the Inter-Services Intelligence have shown to the Taliban and other militant groups, such as the Haqqani network, which carry out suicide attacks and other violent assaults inside Afghanistan. He said, “Pakistan constantly says that they’re going to stop supporting the Taliban, but they go back on their words and end up supporting them for longer. Taliban are the Veritable Arm of Pakistan’s ISI”.
The situation is really very much confusing rather intriguing. If Pakistan is supporting terrorism, if Pakistan is nurturing the terrorists, then Pakistan must not have been the ever worst victim to the menace of terrorism. A report published in 2011 said, ‘The annual death toll from terrorist attacks in Pakistan has risen from 164 in 2003 to 3318 in 2009, with a total of 35,000 Pakistanis killed between September 11, 2001 and May 2011. The South Asia Terrorism Portal and Institute for Conflict Management have recently prepared a joint assessment report which says that from 2003 t0 28th December 2014 more than 55973 Pakistanis lost their lives in the fire of terrorism. If Pakistan were supporting the militant organizations, if Pakistan were backing up the terrorists, so many precious lives must not have been pushed to the realm of cruel death. And what about the recent attack on the Army Public School Peshawar which took the lives of more than 150 innocent children and their teachers. Did the ISI and the Pakistan Army ask the terrorists to slaughter and burn their own innocent children? This stupid blame game must be stopped now. Why our American and Indian friends always try to dig out our presence whenever there is a reference to any of the Muslim militant organization including Al- Qaeda, ISIS, ISIL, Daesh or the Taliban. What about Mehdi Biswas, the owner of a pro-ISIS twitter handle in Bangalore? Was he representing Pakistan in Bangalore? And what about those who were involved in 2013’s Boston Marathon Attack? Were they also representing Pakistan? This confusingly terrifying situation would never be resolved if this blame game against Pakistan is not stopped. Conspiracies based on blames and allegations would never let this world become a peaceful and secure earthly paradise. This world needs peace and harmony and both these things cannot breathe longer in presence of hypocrisy.