Mukhtar Ahmed Butt
Three countries have populist leaders who have changed the ways politics was being conducted in their regions and the world. More militaristic in approach this leadership looks at all problems and their solution from the barell of the gun The strategic partnership between USA and India and now the visits of the PMs of India and Israel to each others countries suggest that all three are getting together to achieve their common goals . How is this likely to effect Pakistan? What should Pakistan do to meet this threat or challenge?
Amongst our national interests the foremost is survival. Other national interests include maintaining our independence, safeguarding our territorial integrity, preserving our ideological values and upholding our sovereignty. Are we powerful enough to safeguard our national interests? Especially if we are being threatened and challenged by world forces including USA India and Israel ?
No doubt we are in a state of conflict and any conflict will have conflict will always have three important elements – actors, action and incompatibilities. Anyone who suggests that we are not in a state of conflict than please have a look at the situation at both our eastern as well as western front – the actors are clear so are their actions what is missing is a sincere effort by the actors and the stake holders to understand the existing incompatibilities. Kashmir and the way the freedom struggle is looked at and understood is a huge incompatibility between us and India as well as the entire world. Similarly Pakistan’s role in the war on terror. The threat is there for all to see our vulnerabilities are also pretty much understood and if we look at the consequences we may suffer even a blind man can see that as a state we are at risk.
To look at USA as a threat would be inappropriate – more appropriate would be to look at the possibility of continuing to have a state to state working relationship that focuses on the possibilities of how to build up the lost trust between the two states. USA may have many national interests but the three most prominent are – Protecting homeland, Safeguarding its citizens home and abroad and ensuring the safety of US allies and the international order that it has created and maintains. If these are its major interests from where does the threat to theses interests come from? – Al Qaida, ISIS, Talibans, Rouge states (Iran, North Korea), Great Powers (Russia,China),Development of advanced Technologies, Weapons of mass destruction(WMD’s) – How does USA prepare to meet these threats – military power, Investing in high technology sectors in the country, Solid economy, Best universities and maintaining an alliance system. I think we should also take a lead from USA in how to meet the threats that we face.
I have sound belief that our brave armed forces and our political system which is still in a state of infancy and maturing will combine together to beat back any threat that we may face in future.
The writer is a freelance journalist based in Karachi.