Vantage point

Thursday, September 25, 2003

Is Pakistan a Friend or Foe?

This is the question Time magazine asks its American readers, and answers implicitly through this article that lists the innumerable sins committed by 'Pak'istan.

A few excerpts -

Just how devoted is President Pervez Musharraf to fighting terrorism? Is Pakistan undermining stability in neighboring Afghanistan? Is it flirting with the potential disaster of a new war on the subcontinent by harboring militants fighting India in the disputed region of Kashmir? What role does Islamabad play in the proliferation of nuclear weapons worldwide?

We all know the disturbing answers to these questions, don't we? But the Americans have been wasting their time running after Iraqis for the past year instead of concentrating on attacking the root cause of the problem.

After India and Pakistan, both nuclear armed, nearly went to war over the conflict in May 2002, Musharraf assured Bush that there were no militant training camps in Pakistani territory. Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage reminded Musharraf of that guarantee when the two met in the northern city of Rawalpindi before Musharraf's last meeting with Bush in June. Armitage then produced a dossier of satellite photos showing camps of that nature. "Musharraf acted outraged and upset," a State Department official tells TIME, but it wasn't clear to the Americans whether he was angry that the camps were functioning or that the U.S. had uncovered them.

LOL and ROFLMAO at the last line!! :-P

Ultimately, the most explosive issue between the U.S. and Pakistan is the nuclear one. American intelligence officials believe Pakistani scientists have shared�with North Korea and Iran�the technology they developed on their way to becoming a nuclear power.

Given these facts one would have thought the Americans would take some steps to sterilise the place that Advani so lovingly calls the 'epicentre of terrorism'. But no, when there are soft(!!) targets like Iraq to occupy, why worry about the headache of tackling a pesky foe like Pakistan?

The best way out - call the foe a friend. Then all problems will go away.

Reminds me of ostriches burying their heads in sand.

This piece from the latest issue of the onion says it so aptly -

U.S. Invades Non-Oil-Rich Nation To Dispel Criticism
LUXEMBOURG VILLE, LUXEMBOURG�In an effort to quiet criticism of U.S. military policy, 50,000 U.S. troops invaded and soundly defeated the non-oil-rich Grand Duchy of Luxembourg Monday. "Once again, the U.S. claims victory over a rogue nation," said President Bush after the 45-minute war. "The people of Luxembourg, although prosperous and living in peace, have suffered under the tyranny of a monarchy for centuries. And allow me to point out that Luxembourg has not one drop of crude oil." Troops will return home Friday, following the public hanging of Grand Duke Henri de Luxembourg.