BY ALI SUKHANVER
Recently the US senate has passed the Carry Logger Bill which promises $1.5 billion aid every year, over the next five years for Pakistan. Commenting over the bill, President Obama has said “The United States is firmly committed to the future that the Pakistani people deserve, a future that will advance our common security and prosperity.”
The said Carry Logger Bill has no doubt won the hearts of the people of Pakistan but on the other hand the situation is not very much pleasing for India. The Foreign minister of India SM Krishna said “We have always been cautioning our friends, the USA, that please, please for heaven’s sake make sure that the aid you are giving to Pakistan is not directed and misappropriated to be used against India, a friend of yours.” He further said that he would emphasise the point when he meets US secretary of state Hillary Clinton next week .He would also voice India’s disappointment over Pakistan not prosecuting Lashkar-e-Taiba founder and 26/11 mastermind Hafiz Saeed despite the six dossiers of proof given by India.
No doubt, India must have its own reservations regarding the international political scenario but it has not right to ‘cry wolf’, when there is no wolf. Though the Indian hi-ups have very cunningly chosen the time to pay off old scores with Pakistan but all their efforts seem go waste; the US authorities are not willing to pay any attention to these false accusations. At present the USA is annoyed at the Indian rude and stubborn behavior regarding the CTBT. For the last few months India has been planning for more nuclear tests by claiming that the tests nuclear tests in May 1998 were a mere failure. The Indian nuclear scientists are churning out the ready-made statements tailored by the Indian government that India needs more thermonuclear device tests and it must not rush into signing the CTBT. This situation is certainly not very comforting for the USA. India is trying to spill water over the US efforts against the spread of nuclear weapons throughout the world. In short, India is not in a position to distort the friendly relationship between Pakistan and USA.
The Carry Logger Bill would surely bring the two countries closer in spite of the fact that some of the clauses of this bill are not acceptable for Pakistan. It is being highlighted in the media that through this bill, USA intends to increase its influence and interference in the purely internal affairs of Pakistan; but such trivial issues could be easily settled through negotiations. The most important need of time is that America must root out the factor of distrust and suspicions hidden behind its relations with Pakistan. The drone attacks by the US troops in the tribal areas of Pakistan are one of the few elements which may widen the gulf between the two countries. The government of Pakistan has always protested against these drone attacks but the US authorities are not trying to understand and analyze the situation. Recently some of the American policy makers have suggested that the drone attacks must not be limited to the northern tribal areas of Pakistan. They have pointed out the presence of the Taliban and Al-Qaida elements in Balochistan and advised the US government to hit these elements there in Balochistan.If unfortunately the US government accepts such foolish suggestions; the situation is going to be more unpleasant for America. It is a fact that at present America is the only country which is trying its utmost for the stability and strength of Pakistan, but it has yet not succeeded in winning the hearts of Pakistani people. Most of the people in Pakistan are of the opinion that America is responsible for the worst law and order situation in their country. They think that America is playing a double game; on one hand it is supporting the miscreants and on the other hand it is asking Pakistan to crush them. As a result of this double game Pakistan has become a battlefield .Moreover the information regarding the presence of the Black Water force in Islamabad, Peshawar and some other cities of Pakistan has added more hatred to the anti-American feelings. In such a grim scenario the drone attacks in Balochistan would flare up the feelings. The American hi-ups must try to review the situation .If America desires to keep a upper-hand in the region , it would have to win the sympathies of the Pakistani people.
Pak-America friendship is something very deep rooted. It won’t be a misjudgment if Pakistan is considered the most sincere supporter and promoter of the US policies in the South Asian region. Without the moral and military support of Pakistan, the USA would never have been able to fight against the menace of terrorism. It is only Pakistan who remained the most important ally of the USA in the war against terror since the very first day. As a result of this support Pakistan had to face very grievous consequences. It had to sacrifice hundreds of it soldiers in the northern tribal areas, its economy had to bear serious setbacks and its innocent people had to face the reaction of the extremists in form of horrible suicidal attacks. But in spite of all these trials and tribulations, Pakistan never backed out of its support to the US mission against terrorism. The present Carry Logger Bill may be taken as an acknowledgement to Pakistan’s help and support to the US efforts against terrorism. Pakistan and America are most trusted and tried friends; this present bill is surely like a gifted-garland from a sincere friend; but America must try to dispel the feelings that this garland is going to be a scaffold in near future.
The writer is a Pakistan based bilingual analyst on national and international strategic and defense affairs.He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org