Was Pakistan right to boycott the Bonn conference?
Pakistan has rightly been outraged at a Nato attack over the border from Afghanistan that killed 24 soldiers and injured 13 more. The coalition has claimed that they received fire from across the border. However some US commentators are wondering whether the accusations should be turned upside down, and instead of the US giving apologies should it instead be demanding them for the damage Pakistan is doing to the coalition effort in Afghanistan. No matter who deserves apologies from whom Pakistan might be making a mistake to close off the Bonn talks on Afghanistan as it has done in response to the attacks. The Unites States is likely to in response continue reducing its reliance upon Pakistan as a supply route therefore damaging the economy and ultimately if Pakistan gets what it seems to want; defeat for the US in Afghanistan then the US will suddenly have no interest in supporting Pakistan in its quarrels with India; a conflict which is much more important to Pakistan’s perceptions of its interests than Afghanistan would seem to be. Has Pakistan therefore hurt its own interests?
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The US already prefers India over Pakistan, while Pakistani soldiers and civilians are dying for the Americans
"Hasan claimed US actions beyond Afghanistan were contributing to the destabilisation of Pakistan by increasing public anger towards the government over its co-operation with Washington. These included one-sided support for India's civil nuclear energy programme, public airing of concerns about Pakistan's nuclear arsenal, an insistence on unfair market-access trade rules and a history of supporting Pakistan's military rulers – thereby undermining the country's democratic institutions.
"The way the Americans behave, they are not leaving any political space for Gilani and Zardari. They are up against the wall. They have no room to manoeuvre", the high commissioner said. Pakistan, he said, was "a nation in distress... if democracy collapses in Pakistan, a radical regime could take over."[[http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/nov/29/pakistan-boycotts-bonn-conference-afghanistan]]
"The DCC strongly condemned the attack by NATO/ISAF aircrafts on Pakistani border posts in the Mohmand Agency which had resulted in the deaths of 24 security personnel and injuring 12 soldiers of the Pakistan Army."-[[http://tribune.com.pk/story/298140/top-echelon-condemn-unacceptable-checkpost-attack/]]
"As many as 24 Army personnel were martyred as Allied helicopters raided the Mohmand Agency’s checkpost on the night between Friday and Saturday.
Ex-senior Army officers wondered how the Nato forces could make such a grave mistake when it was in their knowledge that the checkpost they were going to attack was part of a regular company headquarter. Former Army Chief General Aslam Beg talking to TheNation said: “It was a highly tragic incident and unforgivable.” He remarked that it was “our right to avenge the blood of the 24 personnel of the Pak Army and a practical step should be taken in this regard instead of making statements.”
In sum, Pakistan's interests have long been trampled upon by the US over a period of several decades. The country is finally taking a stand for its own interests. Tens of thousands of Pakistani soldiers have given their lives in the fight against the Taliban, while the US pressures Pakistan to help mediate talks with the Taliban, simultaneously. Pakistan cannot be America's scapegoat or guinea pig any more, the country is in several crises all at once and cost of helping the US is higher than the rewards for it. Pakistan's government is under a consistent threat of crumbling down because the US readies Pakistan to be her sacrificial queen. This time US-Afghan NATO forces killed 24 Pakistani soldiers and injured several others for no good reason. (If there was a scuttle where are the injured NATO officers?) The message is clear: slaves have no rights.
"Ours is not to make reply,
Ours is not to reason/question why,
Ours is but to do and die,
Into the jaws of the death,
into the mouth of hell..."
The sacrifices and efforts that the Pakistani government, people and soldiers have made in the fight against terror, outweigh those of any other nation and yet Pakistan is vilified by the western media for not doing 'enough'.
This is only to Pakistan's detriment. Open noncooperation with the US only confirms their allegations that Pakistan's loyalties lie elsewhere. India is the economic MFN (most favored nation), India recognizes Israel as a nation and Osama Bin Laden was not killed in India.
As far as a higher Pakistani death toll is concerned. Would there be no insurgents if the US didn't intervene. The Taliban were in the region long before the announcement of the war on terror, the 9/11 plot was hatched in Pakistan. It could be safe to profess that the US is aiding Pakistan on its war against terror and not the other way around.
The US ambassador to Pakistan has apologized, friendly fire is the curse of US-led wars everywhere, it would be wise for Pakistan to let this one slide.
The Pakistani people want the US to either behave or go
"The US and Pakistan desperately need each other in order to shape the future of a stable and neutral Afghanistan before Western combat troops withdraw next year, correspondents say.
While Pakistani officials facing mounting domestic anger over ties with the US, they have little room for manoeuvre - the country's military is heavily dependent on US aid.
The BBC's Orla Guerin in Islamabad says there is little chance of ties being cut - but Pakistan is determined to send a message that it will not be satisfied merely with condolences from Nato or promises of an inquiry" -[[http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-15937270]]
Pakistan is now putting the US in line. There is a limit to Pakistan's tolerance and direct attacks on our soldiers will, can and should not be taken lightly.[[http://goo.gl/uIUa1]]
9/11 was an Arab plot, Al-Queda is an Arab organization, the US and India dragged Pakistan into the terrorism mess when not a single one of plotters and assailants of 9/11 was Pakistani. As far as the dubious allegation that the plot was hatched in Pakistan goes, maybe Nato should bomb Florida, or NYC because that's where the 9/11 terrorists were trained and where they executed their business.
The Nation is a sell-out newspaper, owned and distributed by the Punjab government, which incidentally own a number of sugar mills as well. The quotes seem to have been tampered with and no General has issued a blood-for-blood statement to any other news-media.
The Pakistani military is hugely dependent on US aid, thousands of civilians and soldiers have died in the name of collateral damage and so on. An investigation into the incident is underway and there two separate accounts of what happened on 26th November. There is no reason to block supply route or damage US-Pak relations any further.
For security reasons
A revenge attack from militant groups is plausible, given all the Hoopla over the event. It would not be safe for NATO trucks to transport oil and other supplies across the border.
"NATO supplies halted for ‘security reasons’
NATO supply trucks and fuel tankers bound for Afghanistan were stopped at the town of Jamrud in Khyber tribal region near the city of Peshawar hours after the raid, officials said.
While Pakistan can normally provide security "On average 200 NATO containers and oil tanker cross Chaman border everyday. “We were asked to hold NATO containers and oil tankers,” a senior official said, adding that foolproof security was being provided to NATO trucks in order to thwart any attack from hostile elements.: on its side of the border, you never know when Afghan-US NATO soldiers might decide to blindly shoot at an oil tanker driven by a Pakistani, mere apologies do not assuage that threat.
There have always been security issues, which is why security measures are taken for safe passage. As far as using this incident to assume that oil cannot be transported across the border is concerned, that is quite a stretch and we should wait until a proper investigation is concluded before dropping to any conclusions on the matter.
America's war is being fought with Pakistan's people
In this so called war on terror, the most lives lost have been Pakistani. The Taliban, in response to the governments siding with America, attacks cities and towns constantly and takes the lives of thousands of innocent Pakistanis. Our soldiers are the ones fighting on the front lines against enemies of the US. The Pakistan troop loss is much greater than US and NATO troop loss. Pakistan's economy, health and people are suffering because they are caught in the crossfire of America and Extremists.
Pakistan urged to rethink Bonn Afghan talks boycott
"30 Sept 2010: Nato helicopters kill two Pakistani soldiers, prompting nearly two-week border closure in protest
22 April 2011: Supplies to Nato forces in Afghanistan halted for three days in protest over drone attacks
2 May: US announces Bin Laden's death and says Pakistan not warned of raid
2 June: Top US military chief Adm Mike Mullen admits "significant" cut in US troops in Pakistan
10 July: US suspends $800m of military aid
22 Sept: Outgoing US Adm Mullen accuses Pakistan of supporting Haqqani militant group in Afghanistan; denied by Pakistan"[[http://goo.gl/oKaRy]]
Supplies to Afghanistan have been halted before and what did Pakistan achieve except an addendum to mistrust?
"Meanwhile, Pakistan remains angry over the Nato attack which on Wednesday it described as "deliberate aggression".
Mrs Clinton said that she hoped there would be a "follow-up way" for Pakistan to take part in talks on Afghanistan's future.
She pledged an investigation "as swiftly and thoroughly as possible" into the "tragic incident" at the weekend.
Both German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Afghan President Hamid Karzai have urged Pakistan to re-think its decision not to attend the conference.
Mrs Merkel said that Berlin would "see what could be done to change" Islamabad's decision.
But the BBC's M Ilyas Khan in Islamabad says that Pakistan's ire over the attack shows no sign of diminishing."
As Pakistan sees it :
"At a briefing on Wednesday Maj Gen Ishfaq Nadeem said it was impossible for Nato not to have known it was attacking Pakistani posts in the weekend attack.
He repeated Pakistani allegations that the alliance had ignored mutually agreed communications procedures during the attack.
Pakistani authorities say the border posts were strategically located to stop Taliban infiltration into Pakistan.
They have also accused Afghan and American forces of providing sanctuaries to anti-Pakistan militants in Afghanistan."
Our sovereignty, security and nuclear arsenal is under threat from across the border, we must do everything we can to protect our soldiers, our people and the nation as a whole.
We are bearing the brunt of the cost and the mistrust, since it is Pakistani lives that are taken, destroyed and at stake, only Pakistan should reserve the right to trust or not. [[http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-15960438]]
Sanctions never work as intended
"A rule of embargoes is that they rarely work as intended -- the targeted victim pays or charges more for its products; middlemen and smugglers get rich; ordinary people become poorer; new trade routes are established and old ones are deepened. Not that sanctions inflict no bite on its victims. It is simply that they rarely result in the sought change of behavior."-[[http://goo.gl/i0y70]]]
Last time Pakistan halted supplies to Afghanistan, the loyalty of Pakistan's lower military ranks was called into question, The Pakistani intelligence's work on tracing and following the couriers to OBL's location was underplayed and discredited. Who know what will happen this time, either The US is not going to stop facilitating the incredible loss to Pakistani lives.
The assumption is that the attack on Pakistani posts was deliberate, tailored and the intention of the US. Hilary Clinton has promised an inquiry into the matter and expressed deep regret over the deaths of the soldiers.
However to appease the Pakistani people, respect the victims families and to otherwise send a clear signal that the repetition of 'mistakes' of this sort will not be tolerated, it is in the interest of Pakistan to assert our importance, exert pressure and insure that such mishaps will not reoccur.
What about American lives? Kapil Komreddi asks
An annoying Indian has imagined that Pakistan's military has mass murdered American civilians or soldiers out of thin air (Zilch to back his claims, since when does a journalist need evidence for flaring up the flames of politics?). Is there any case in point where this has happened or reported to have happened? No, but the Indian rambles on sans proof. Al-Queda is Arab not Pakistani, all the Al-Queda insurgents killed and/or captured in Pakistan are Arab. The Taliban regime existed in Afghanistan and seeped into Pakistan, this again was not a Pakistani problem to start off.
One of the reasons why Pakistan should refrain from testing the tenacity of the string that connects the US and Pakistan is that impertinent imaginative Indians are always looking to bank in on this sort of crisis and pretend that Al-Qaeda is Pakistani or that the Taliban is Pakistani and there are no Indian RAW operatives roaming within Pakistan. [[http://goo.gl/FCv9v]] [[http://goo.gl/XQhv1]] [[http://goo.gl/Stw9M]] [[http://goo.gl/cQnFP]] [[http://goo.gl/Agb76]]
The memo gate scandal is only a reiteration of the PPP(Pakistan People Party)'s mistrust of the Pakistani military ever since Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto was dethroned via a coup from General Zia-Ul-Haq, who in turn got Bhutto hanged for the journalists he had murdered.
Pakistani feudal lords are known to be trigger happy, and Bhutto never denied the allegations. Of course his hanging was politically motivated or was it? Bhutto's popularity was waning long before the coup, he was not good to win another election, his socialist policies alienated him from the business community, his refusal to hand over his 'lands' to the serfs and end feudalism in Pakistan reminded ordinary people of his lack of real interest in the people's cause, his obsession with alcohol alienated the maulvis whom he claimed "drank blood" and his policy reversal (making alcohol illegal, shutting down casinos and cabaret halls) lost the minority that liked him in his early years. [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Murtaza_Bhutto#Al-Zulfiqar_Organization]]
CBS: "In other words, the U.S. is reportedly bankrolling a man suspected of being a major player in the corruption that handcuffs American troops in their fight against the Taliban. " Karzai's corruption and drug peddling is well known. There have been no Afghan-American deaths at the hands of Pakistanis except to the knowledge of Kapil who refuses to cite the sources he does not have. The Pakistan government will do everything it can to show that we have no tolerance for the martyrdom of our soldiers at the hands of corrupt, drug-peddling murderers. [[http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2009/10/28/eveningnews/main5439648.shtml]] [[http://goo.gl/gwXEN]]
What do you think?