The world must be concerned no less than India about the incorrigible troublemaker in the region; 70 years of Pakistan’s existence has proven time and again its intractability; the problem calls for a solution beyond compelling the rogue nation to be sane
While the state of Pakistan sanctioning a ‘fatwa’ issued by more than a thousand clerics against terrorism is the joke of the century, one sees why its government is in a state of panic. If there is one force in the world that can tame this rogue country, it’s the United States. This is not the first instance of Pakistan seeking cover with its tail tucked between the legs. From Pervez Musharraf pleading with the extremist elements of that country to stop forming outfits with names like Jaish, Ansar and Lashkar — which refer to private militias — to his act of dumping the Taliban of Afghanistan to let troops of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation launch an attack on the rocky country from its soil in the aftermath of 9/11 to allowing the US to liquidate internationally dreaded terrorist Osama bin Laden from his hideout in Abbottabad to, now, first sulking and then extending the custody of 26/11 mastermind Hafiz Saeed when the American security assistance of $2 billion is called off, it’s a long list. The move impresses none as Frankenstein cannot be expected to control his monster. The nation’s birth on the basis of religious discrimination, decades of cultivation of hatred, rule by Islamic supremacists, teaching of false history to children in mainstream schools, proliferation of hate-preaching seminaries, subversion of democracy, recurrent military regimes and use of militants for a proxy war against India as an instrument of Pakistan’s state policy has brought our western neighbour to the brink. However, although Donald Trump is a US President far away from those of the Cold War years when the Americans preferred Pakistan to India as a regional partner, it is unlikely the sponsor of terrorists has drawn a permanent lesson. Until something more drastic happens, this is the maximum extent of arm-twisting the US will take recourse to in order to ensure the Islamic state behaves. Sooner or later, aid to Pakistan will resume just as the halted supplies of F-16 aircraft did more than once. And the virtual military state will be back to its mischievous ways.
Unfortunately for India, the United States cannot be the redress of its Pakistan woes. A previous editorial has, to that end, prescribed the job cut out for the Narendra Modi regime on the western front. The world must be concerned no less about the incorrigible troublemaker in the region. It’s because of Pakistan that peace, stability, rehabilitation and progress eludes a civil war-ravaged Afghanistan. Vladimir Putin will soon realise that his recent tilt towards Pakistan, frustrated by the reduction in Indian military orders to Russia, is counterproductive. Almost surrounded as the country is by several Muslim nations, the now-suppressed rebellion in Chechnya may not be its last bout with a force that is hostile to it just because it hosts a different religion. Execution of terror plots in the border areas followed by the attackers’ escaping back to Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and/or Turkmenistan may appear an improbable hypothesis today, but hobnobbing with Pakistan will make India’s neighbour seek territories towards the north to expand the scope for Islamic brotherhood — if only to enjoy a large sphere of influence. Eventually one day in the future, China too will have to abandon its folly of nurturing Pakistan to contain India. The capitalist society that the communist state has fostered for the past three decades, India is certainly a better and much larger market than its current all-weather friend. With the US being geographically distant, Eurasia must find ways to keep Pakistan on leash if not Balkanise the nation that cannot live without antagonism and rancour. Even the Americans must figure out what strange reasons — other than paid lobbyism — turn some of its Congressmen pro-Pakistan. Seventy years of its existence has proven time and again its intractability. The problem called Pakistan calls for a solution beyond compelling it to be sane.