Jamaat chief blames US for Pakistan’s woes
Dammam, Aug 7: The visiting head of one of Pakistan's prominent religious and political parties has blamed the United States’ stinging defeat in Afghanistan for the current chaos in his country.
“What we are witnessing today in Pakistan is a direct result of America’s defeat in Afghanistan at the hands of the brave Afghans,” said Jamaat-e-Islami Pakistan chief Syed Munawar Hasan.
Speaking at well-attended programs organized by well-known Pakistani expatriates in the Eastern Province, he said: “America is not able to swallow this defeat and, therefore, it is out to wreak havoc in Pakistan. All these acts of violence that we are witnessing in our country are the work of American agents.”
The Jamaat chief was in Saudi Arabia on a 12-day visit and was a prominent invitee at the Muslim World League’s just concluded conference in Makkah on “Issues and Challenges of the Muslim World.”
Afghanistan, he said, has lived up to its historic reputation of being the graveyard of superpowers.
“First it was Britain, then Communist Russia and now America … all the three superpowers could not conquer the barely armed Afghans. America’s defeat is even more legendary because it has the most lethal and the most technologically advanced weapons in their armory; it has the most professional army in the world and it was not just America that was fighting the unarmed Afghans — it was the combined might of America and NATO forces. Ten years after they went into Afghanistan, they are being forced to return empty handed.”
Hasan says a wounded America wants to punish Pakistan for its defeat in Afghanistan. “The Americans want to make things so ungovernable in Pakistan so the world clamors against its nuclear assets. The whole game plan is to divest Pakistan of its most prized assets by raising the bogus issue of the nuclear bombs falling into the hands of extremists,” he said.
He said Pakistan’s government should follow a foreign policy that is independent of America. “We are not saying that we should cut off all ties with America. What we are saying is that we should have a relationship that recognizes Pakistan’s national interests. What we see today is a complete capitulation of our political leadership to American demands. It is a proven fact that America’s friendship is worse than being its enemy,” he said.
Hasan pointed out that there was a unanimous all-party decision in Parliament that the government should follow an independent foreign policy. “Why is this decision, which was unanimous and included representatives of all stakeholders, not being followed? Why are drone attacks still being allowed inside Pakistani territory? Our armed forces have made it very clear that they can stop them, but such a move needs political backing. Why is there such a disastrous lack of political will?”
On Pakistan’s recent talks with India, Hasan expressed no optimism. “This is just a cosmetic exercise. As long as India refuses to consider Kashmir a disputed territory, there is no point in holding any talks. What are we going to talk to India about? New Delhi continues to insist that Kashmir is its integral part. Well, then, what is left to talk about?”
Hasan feels talks with India can succeed if there is no outside influence. “India is being egged on and even used by the United States. Indian foreign policy is now being written in Washington. Can you expect any good coming out of the United States other than mischief and warmongering?”
Hasan admits that popular anger is rising against the government in Pakistan. “People are upset and worried. They have been let down by the current government. This government promised to continue a policy of reconciliation and hope. There was such euphoria after the last elections when Pervez Musharraf and his cohorts were defeated in the 2008 general elections. All that euphoria has dissipated. The ruling party and principal opposition party all joined hands and refused to honor the commitment they had given to the people of Pakistan. It is a complete mess.”
He said despite all the troubles in Pakistan, any upheaval on the lines of what some Middle Eastern states have witnessed recently might not be repeated in Pakistan. “The kind of excesses that were committed in some Arab states such as Egypt and Tunisia, we have not had. Yes, what we have is bad governance. In fact, even when we had dictators, they still had to hide behind the fig leaf of democracy to legitimize their rule. We cannot draw a parallel between what is happening in the Arab world to the happenings in Pakistan. The two are totally different scenarios.” Courtesy Arab News
Lastupdate on : Sun, 7 Aug 2011 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Sun, 7 Aug 2011 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Mon, 8 Aug 2011 00:00:00 IST
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