Perception Is Reality

Musharraf to U.S.: Stay Out Of Pakistan

Posted on: January 13, 2008

For the entire article, click here (Courtesy of CNN.com)

“Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf has made it clear that a U.S. military mission to capture Osama bin Laden or other top al Qaeda leaders on Pakistani soil would be unwelcome and “against the sovereignty of Pakistan.””

Let us analyze this: Pakistan is an independent state. It has a functioning government. The country is not like an open door to a house.

The U.S. claims that it is considering “expanding” the operations in the Northern part of Pakistan to shore up support for the president. This gives away two things: First, the U.S. armed forces are in fact on Pakistani soil. The other, more important thing is this: A major population of Pakistan dislikes the United States government (and not the whole of the U.S.). In order to increase support for Musharraf, the U.S. threatens its own international image. This will perhaps be the third or fourth country it “invades” and will cause a major outcry from the people of Pakistan. What does this say to the U.S.? Stay out of Pakistan. Not just what Musharraf is implying, but the whole of Pakistan is implying. U.S. presence in Pakistan is already a discourse which is a thin thread waiting to break under tension.

“I do not lead a war on terror on behalf of the United States, but on behalf of Pakistan,” Musharraf told French newspaper Le Figaro in an interview published Saturday. “

This is a very important statement. This shows Pakistan’s commitment to the war on terror initiated by the United States. It shows that Pakistan, on its own accord has decided to intiate its own “chapter” on the war on terror, and is doing a great job at that.

“The United States seems to think that what our army cannot do, they can do,” he said. “This is a very wrong perception. I challenge anybody to come into our mountains. They would regret that day. It’s not easy there.”

This statement is not to be taken out of context: It is not a threat to the U.S., it is a show of concern: Pakistani terrain in the north is not easy to conquer, and as far as comparison goes, the Pakistani army has more in-field experience patrolling and securing this terrain than the U.S. armed forces. They also understand how the minds of the terrorists work in this region and as such, are able to anticipate their moves. Another important thing to note is that many of the Pakistani soldiers have been trained in international training camps, mostly in the United States. Musharraf himself has had higher level training in the west. This is not necessarily true for the western armed forces.

It seems that Musharraf is a good communicator. He knows what to say, how to say it, and the message comes across loud and clear: It is not muddled up, it is honest. Musharraf and his military (well, ex military anyway) seems to be doing a fairly decent job taking care of the terrorism which has been on a rise due to the threat to the dogmatic extremists from possible secular law in Pakistan.

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4 Responses to "Musharraf to U.S.: Stay Out Of Pakistan"

It’s interesting that Musharraf has, up until recently, welcomed the support of the United States almost to a fault. Why the sudden turn-around?

Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s good for Pakistan to remind the United States that it’s a sovereign nation, but it seems odd considering Musarraf’s past thoughts on the United States and its involvement with Pakistan.

Hey Cody, thanks for the comment and the question. It hasn’t been a turn around really. If you run a country for people you hate, you’re going to try to keep your people happy. They do not want Americans on their soil: they have enough problems as it is. We all need a gentle reminder that we need not step our boundaries as is the case with the United States. Without Pakistan, the U.S. would have had no operating base. If some burglar comes into your house, you’re going to try to defend yourself. If you’re in the states and have a licensed gun, you won’t hesitate to fire. If someone from Africa comes into the U.S. to, say, counter the Ku Klux Clan, will you not say, “butt out of our problems, we’ll sort it out?”
I don’t think I’ll be clear enough, but when Musharraf talks about the people’s mindsets and our terrain, the depth of those words is really hard to understand since the west has not seen this terrain. What makes them think that they can conquer our terrain? I think I mentioned above that we have similar training and in some cases are trained by the west. There is no doubt that the agreement with FATA had to be made. Pakistan was founded in a state of war and since then, has been at war with itself, struggling to overcome internal stress.
Tell me what you think?

That makes sense. I’ve read about that area of Pakistan and how ill-equipped and poorly trained American soldiers are to handle it. Most who get sent there have probably never been to Pakistan before. Better to let people native to the country and used to the terrain do the job instead of bringing in foreign soldiers. I doubt Musharraf wants to end up relying on American help like other countries the United States gets into.

Hey Cody,

You’d be surprised man. The past 3 hours I was explaining to a few of my naive (university) friends that the media and stereotyping and what not lead people to believe things such as the entire country is fighting an old fashioned sword fights. We also have several Pizza Hut, McDonalds and KFC outlets incase the west was wondering 😛 It’s not all black and white and as such, I could go into arguments pertaining to politics, social issues and religious issues to show how there are discrepancies in the reports the media give out. All in all, I am a neutral individual when it comes to politics but I’ve been studying this for far too long to be able to foresee “coincidences.”

I’m sorry if I come off as a jerk its 6:40 in tthe morning and I’m really sleepy, heh. We should talk more if you would like 🙂

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About the Author…

Born in Karachi, Pakistan in an Adventist hospital, I grew up in a city where on one side I experienced poverty and oppression, while on the other I had the good fortune of Tabish Bhimani being a member of an upper middle-class business family...more...

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