Obama’s war enters Pakistan

IT appears that there is a method to the madness in Bob Woodward’s book “Obama’s War”. The war he refers to is not just the war in Afghanistan but the conflict, which has permeated into Pakistan. The relatively tranquil Pakistan had its peace shattered when post 9/11, the US-led allies attacked Afghanistan. Then Pakistani President Musharraf joined the alliance because it was envisaged that otherwise the US would have turned upon Pakistan. President Musharraf, when asked by the Pakistani media, had said that he had managed to thwart possible US ire against Pakistan and managed to buy time. It appears that the lease on the time is fast running out as is US patience towards Pakistan. The book “Obama’s War” in fact provides prescience into US paranoia, which is the driving force behind its wars.It was US paranoia of imagined weapons of mass destruction (WMD) which prompted the attack on Iraq. Nearly eight years of Iraqi occupation have revealed not even a needle which could be presented to the world as WMD. However, in the bargain, Iraq has been devastated. Its economy has been shattered, the number of Iraqis slaughtered since the U.S. invaded Iraq according to Information Clearing House (ICH) is “1,366,350”; while the number of U.S. military personnel sacrificed (officially acknowledged) in America’s war on Iraq comes to: 4,742. The US attack on Afghanistan too was based on a conjecture that Osama bin Laden (OBL) orchestrated the 9/11 attacks. The US wanted the Taliban government in Afghanistan to hand over OBL to the US for trial and punishment. Mullah Omar, the then Taliban head of government, asked the US to provide evidence of OBL’s complicity in the heinous 9/11 attack so that trial if any could be conducted in Afghanistan. Instead of complying to Mullah Omar’s request, the US attacked Afghanistan with full fury and created unprecedented death and destruction. According to ICH, the number of International Occupation Force Troops killed in Afghanistan is 2,118; while the number of Afghans slaughtered is above 30,000. The cost of war the USA has had to bear in Iraq & Afghanistan is $1,087,990,787,374 and rising every day.

With this tremendous toll of human lives and sacrifice from a cash strapped US economy, one would have thought that the US government would have chosen the path of pragmatism, since neither OBL nor Mullah Omar were captured by the US or NATO troops. Neither Afghanistan nor Iraq know peace today, yet the Obama administration has opted now to target Pakistan. According to the latest issue of the Time magazine, the term “Obama’s war” is usually invoked in reference to Afghanistan, but with every passing day, it seems to apply equally to the conflict in next-door Pakistan. U.S. drone strikes in Pakistan’s tribal areas are escalating, partly in response to reports that al Qaeda-linked militants there might be planning terror attacks in Europe and the U.S. Afghanistan-based NATO helicopters also recently mounted an unusual cross-border raid, mowing down dozens of militants (and leaving Pakistan’s government fuming about its violated sovereignty). NATO and the U.S. have long invoked a “hot-pursuit” right, claiming that their forces will not end a chase of known combatants at the border. NATO tankers are being targeted by militants. Terror attacks are continuing to assail Pakistani forces, installations, schools, hospitals and market places. If that is not war then what else is? The US continues to insist that the Pakistani military conduct attacks on its behalf on suspected Al-Qaeda strongholds in North Waziristan.

The US is also pressurizing Pakistan that India means it no harm so Pakistan should withdraw its forces from its eastern border and redeploy them on the tribal regions. Firstly, Pakistan is still undergoing the aftereffects of one its worst natural calamities, the unprecedented floods, in which the Pakistan military is bearing the brunt of rescue, relief and rehabilitation tasks. Secondly Indian machinations and belligerence have provided little comfort to the Pakistani military. Construing noncompliance to its requests, the US has taken it upon itself to conduct raids and attacks into Pakistan. This has made the situation explosive. Turning upon its own ally is like the death wish of the black widow spider, which tries to devour its paramour after mating. The Daily Mail is of the opinion that the US should abandon its collision course with Pakistan as it would result in more death and destruction for the US as well as the Pakistanis. Pragmatism must prevail and the folly of pressing Obama’s war into Pakistan should be avoided – Dailymailnews