Category Archives: Geo-Politics

Pakistan’s crush on Shahid Afridi

Ever since I was a kid, I’ve seen a 25-year-old Pakistani Cricketer.

As an Indian, a Pakistani Cricketer is the thing of hate. But, not Lala.

The most endearing image of ‘Boom Boom’ Afridi, is do precisely his nickname suggests.

Boom! He is gone..

Afridi is a man one Army alright. But, we all are left to wonder if he is fighting the opposing team or is he being a double agent.

Self explanatory

His Batting record suggests something even a trained Monkey can attain.

Afridi’s batting average is so low that even Dinesh Mongia has a better batting average!

Shahid Afridi’s overall Batting Record:

Wah mera Lala!

Wah mera Lala!

Dinesh Mongia’s overall batting record:

Even Dinesh Mongia's Batting Record is better than Afridi's!

Even Dinesh Mongia’s Batting Record is better than Afridi’s!

But, Dinesh Mongia did not get to play even 1/4th of the matches that Afridi has. Nobody even remembers his name!

What is the mystery here? Why is this great Cricketer liked and loved in Pakistan? Why is he allowed to play, time after time, failure after repeated failure?

All hell breaks loose in Pakistan when Afridi is mocked

It must be his bowling.

Dis..Appoint..Ment

Dis..Appoint..Ment

On the spin friendly tracks of the Sub-Continent, the great spinner of the ball, the wannabe spinster ought to have great records, I thought.

Aaaa.. What?

No, I must be wrong.. but can’t figure out where I am wrong.

Surely, something must be off. How can one man not bat, not bowl on tracks that suit his style of bowling; and still be around for 15 years? Or, is it been 20? 25? One can never tell..

Sure as hell, Pakistan and Pakistanis have thought it best to allow him to play for 372 (Exclamation.. Double Exclamation.. Triple) ODIs.

What is the big secret?

Afridi is a master strategist! When the going gets tough, the Afridis start eating the ball.

Most people bite the dust, Afridi being a Cricketer, bites the ball

Most people bite the dust, Afridi, being a Cricketer, bites the ball

I always give benefit out the doubt to Shahid Afridi. Not because I like him like him, but because, come on, how can a guy who blatantly cheats and still be in the team, not be liked? I support Afridi.. because I am jealous!

I give him the benefit of the doubt. Hey! If in dim light, after a LOT of Al-ca-gal has gone in, after putting tapanguchi for 2 hours, when I’m hungry as hell, I am bound to mistake a white Cricket ball, to a red juicy Apple.

Do you see an Apple in the picture? That is why you can never be a Shahid Afridi

Do you see an Apple in the picture? That is why you are no Shahid Afridi..

Have I eaten a Cricket ball before? Sadly, no. That’s because I’m not a professional Cricketer. I’m sure most of the people who play Cricket on a regular basis have.

Are you telling having a Cricket ball around you all the time, in the sun and in the scorching heat, a professional Cricketer is not tempted a least bit to eat it?

Puh.. leeez! Lolz..

Lols are so passé. Lulz, also spelled – Lolz, is the bling-ed up version of the now defunct LOL.

Afridi never cheats! Even after going for so many runs, after Pakistan is on the verge of defeat, snatched from the claws of win, by none other than (most frequently), by Afridi himself, Afridi never ever cheats.

Afridi being blasted all over the park by virtually everybody

But, this incidents casts serious shadow over my hero Shahid Afridi.

Most people battle drugs, alcohol, nicotine addiction, but Shahid Afridi is different to other mortals. He battles the..

..Pitch.

OK, I’m going to straight away ignore that and claim that never happened. I’m going into denial mode. Starting NOW!

Some guy who looks like Afridi is destroying the pitch. And, some guy who looks eerily like Kevin Peterson is mocking the great Lala. How can this be true? Unpossible.

All I remember and know is : people aim to emulate Afridi, especially English Cricketers!

Britishers trying to follow in the footsteps of Boom Boom and attempt to eat the ball

See, even the great All-Rounder, who bowls as fast as Afridi, who bats as explosively as Afridi, is trying to Ape(pun unintended) the great man.

I digress badly.

What makes Afridi click? His Batting? Unfortunately no. Bowling? Close, but.. No.. He is known as Boom Boom, not Bomb Bomb!

If he were called ‘Bomb Bomb’, he would have become the poster-boy for the Taliban. The Taliban spokesperson, nevertheless, tried to use his Boom Boom image to their benefit, but reports suggest he was not that successful. But, I think that’s untrue. 

The Taliban did try to use this particular image of Afridi; and, Shahid Afridi’s nickname of ‘Boom Boom’ to claim him as their own.

Afiridi killing Kafirs(Infidels). His routine is to kill an Infidel every time he scores a Century. Not many Kafirs have been killed in the past 2 decades.

Did they succeed?

Ask yourself – Are Taliban popular in Pakistan? Are Pakistani Politicians like Imran Khan, a great Cricketer himself(A nothing compared to the Lala of course), bending over backwards to appease them?

Imran Khan is a great fan of Afiridi and hence, a great fan of Taliban, who are in turn great fans of Afridi.

Surprise surprise, Imran Khan’s party won a LOT of seats and a majority in a Pakistani province.

Talking about Imran Khan, there are may similarities between Shahid Afridi and him. Both are very handsome, very popular cricketers in Pakistan, I hear. They both are loved; and women(and men) go gaga over them both in Pakistan, I’m sure.

But, when it comes to Cricket, the starting point of their fame, they both have contrasting records. Khan has excellent Batting and Bowling records. He has won Pakistan the World Cup as Captain, nurtured terrifying fast bowlers and has a reputation of being a never-say-die Captain.

Afridi is none of that. Not even close.

But, he has one thing in common with Mr. Imran Khan.

I’m too sexy for my shirt, too sexy for my..

I am beginning to now think Pakistanis love Shahid Afridi for being, well.. good looking?

“..when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains,however improbable, must be the truth?”

– Sherlock Holmes

Even men? Not many women watch Cricket in Pakistan, like in India, I’m sure. You don’t see women do this when Shahid Afridi is batting!

Pakistani Fans of Boom Boom praying he doesn’t play an idiotic shot

And, it is men who make movies on the phenomena named Shahid Afridi.

Has there ever been a movie on Tendulkar in India? But, there has been one in Pakistan about Shahid Afridi. Pakistan produced like 3 movies this year. One was about, surprise, surprise – Shahid ‘Boom Boom’ ‘Lala’ Afridi, the all rounder.

Even thought India produces hundreds of movies per year, it hasn’t sought fit to make one on the life of Tendulkar. Tendulkars may come and go Afridis persist. Heck! They don’t age, don’t get dropped, don’t score runs, don’t take wickets.

Pakistanis have already immortalised the great Shahid Afridi, even before he has retired. Oh, wait.. He has retired from Cricket many times.. But, has always managed to make a come back. A great lesson indeed to all the English Cricketers who are retiring at the drop of a hat nowadays. 

They should strive to be more like Shahid Afridi.

Shahid Afridi. Also known as - The Beast!

Shahid Afridi. Also known as – The Beast!

Enough said – Pakistanis, mostly men, love Shahid Afridi. They love his long locks, they love his beard, they love the way he walks, they love the way he runs in to bowl, the way he gets out(silly him, giving a catch to silly point), the way he calls us Indians “small hearted”. All is forgiven by the Men of Pakistan – they forgive his abysmal cricketing record, his ball-eating antics, his blatant pitch tampering, his constant shooting off his mouth.

For a nation which hates Homosexuality, considers it a Sin – an act so unforgivable, that even God will not forgive; which is punishable by death; its pretty ironic that they have a collective, strong crush on a Man.

The average Pakistani jerks off at the sight of the bare-chested Afridi. No wonder cricket is popular in Pakistan. Imran Khan, now Afridi?

Since, Homosexuality is a taboo in Pakistan; legally, socially and religiously condemned, cricket appears to a convenient excuse for the secret fantasies of an extremely homophobic nation.

While Pakistanis asks the Homosexuals to do this..

Religious pious Pakistanis convincing Homosexuals to convert to Hetrosexuals

Religious pious Muslim Pakistanis convincing Homosexuals to convert to Heterosexuality

..but secretly, they are seeing this.

This is how Pakistan imagines Shahid Afridi every time they see him walk onto the park. They don’t care he doesn’t bat nor bowl, the mere sight of him is money’s worth.

For Pakistanis, the very embodiment of male sexuality and good looks is Shahid Afridi.

Forget Ashton Kutcher, Afridi is handsomer.. Plus, he can bite a Cricket ball right through.

Forget that he is dumb as a dodo Monkey.

Oops, they caught me eating ball in front of 23 cameras. How did they do this!

All Pakistanis care about are looks. At least with Imran Khan, they had the excuse of his brilliance. He was an able all-rounder, who spoke well, was a great captain. The homophobic tendencies of the entire nation was masked behind the facade of Imran Khan’s good cricketing skills.

Shahid Afridi is none of that.

The Homosexual Crush of the entire Homophobic Pakistani Islamic Republic nation now stands terribly exposed..

Oops, I am caught jerking off to a.. Man!

Advertisements

24 Comments

Filed under Cricket, Geo-Politics, Human Rights, Love, Sports

How the Modi-bashers are leading to radicalisation of Muslims in India

Why does Islamic Terror exist in India?

Is it an unfortunate expression of oppression of the Muslim minority?

Lets assume for now that is the reason.. Indian Muslims are oppressed, hence, resorting to Terror.

But, the perpetrators of 7/7 London Bombings were not oppressed. They were living in a society which their parents or themselves opted to live in. Why did they kill so many people of their own country? Poverty?

So, what about 9/11? The perpetrators were from a US-ally Saudi Arabia, one of the richest countries in the world and highly educated.

What does UK, US, India have in common? A Muslim minority population which has produced people with extremist tendencies, for some un-explainable reasons(for the fear of being politically incorrect).

What does it all have to do with Modi? A LOT!

Modi is no saint. His actions during the 2002 riots cannot be verified and are highly suspect, yes. Legally he is innocent and proven guilty. There is no clinching evidence of his connivance in promoting the riots. He is also a highly successful Chief Minister of a very important, incredibly successful state. Things are never black and white. Portraying people as such will leave no room for flexibility.

But, instead of saying it as-it-is, the Modi-Bashers(Group MB) are hell-bent on painting him as the devil-incarnate.

There is a good chance that Modi might end up being the Prime Minister of India. At the very least, there is a very good chance that BJP of Modi will return to power.

Most Muslims in India do not hold a favourable view of the Hindu Right. They despise it and understandably so. What Group MB has done, by demonising Modi, is that it they have set the stage for Radicals among the Muslim community to gain centre-stage.

The Muslim leadership is incredibly stupid.

They in their hatred of the Hindu Right have forgotten that Hindu conservative ideas too need a vent. Modi is that vent, whether they like it or not. By projecting him as something worse than Darth Vader, they have managed to sow seeds of Radicalisation in their own community.

We often hear how LeT camps in Pakistan show images and videos of 2002 riots to stir up their cadres, many of whom are Indian citizens. What do you think will happen to the 150 Million Muslims, if a person who is projected by Group MB as a ruthless killer of Muslims comes to power?

Alienation. Leading to Radicalisation on a very large scale. Leading to more alienation and radicalisation. A perfect vicious cycle. Only this time there are no Gandhis and Nehrus; and we cannot create another Pakistan.

9/11 happened almost without any meaningful provocation. The seeds of Islamist behaviour are not rooted neither in poverty nor illiteracy. BJP coming to power, especially with Modi at the helm, will exacerbate an already vicious mood among the Muslims of India, who are not isolated from the larger Muslim world; and, who are in greater numbers than UK and US combined!

Terror Groups like Indian Mujahideen will have absolutely no trouble getting cadres.

Group MB will have only itself to blame, if these unfortunate series of events do unfold.

21 Comments

Filed under Geo-Politics, India

Our very own “Argo”

Recently watched Argo. Loved it. Especially bit about the secret agent, infiltrating into enemy territory and getting the good guys out. There was much appreciation of the methods of the CIA(Even though, in this case, most of the work was apparently done by the Canadians), especially after the Osama episode. Scarcely does anyone come to know what our own premier Intelligence Agency – RAW – has been upto.

I first found out about this couple of years ago. Lets get into details.

What happened on January 30, 1971?

1) What we know is there were two Kashmiris, Hashim Quereshi and his cousin Ashraf Butt, who went on to highjack an Indian Airlines plane named ‘Ganga’ using a Toy Pistol.

2) They take the craft to Lahore, burn it down, Pakistan was happy, they were treated as heroes, Pakistan created a mini-media spectacle thinking it would promote the Kashmiri cause. Passengers were safe, as the intention was to, apparently, promote the “cause” and advertise it to the world.

A picture of the type of aircraft in question. Ganga was an old Fokker F27 Friendship Indian Airlines aircraft.

3) On January 31, Z.A. Bhutto, Pakistani PM to be and the most prominent Politician of the then West Pakistan, visited the airport and embraced the two hijackers as true champions of the Pakistani cause. After five days, he issued a statement to the effect that the hijackers were “two brave men” and their deed demonstrated that “no power on earth can stifle the Kashmiris’ struggle for liberation.” The Pakistani authorities justified the hijacking which they described as the direct result of repressive measures taken by the Government of India in Kashmir.

4) Indian Government seethes with anger and bans overflight from West Pakistan to East Pakistan. A major blow, considering soldiers were being transported in civilian disguise in civilian planes, for the impending bloody massacre of fellow Pakistanis by Pakistani soldiers; and the war that is to follow. The crucial air link is cut off.

5) India liberates “Bangladesh” from Pakistan.

Till now facts speak for themselves. But, strange things begin to happen.

1) Pakistan jails one of the high-jackers for 19 years! Labelling them agents of India and calling one of them BSF. They realised that this Highjacking was used by Indira Gandhi to ban overhead flights between the 2 wings of Pakistan.

2) It comes to be known that the aircraft in question was the oldest of its type in the fleet of the Indian Airlines, was in a poor state of maintenance and lacked certain items of equipment usually carried on such aircraft. Basically the loss of the craft was no-big-deal. It was old and dusty.

3) Now, G.M. Sadiq, the Chief Minister of Jammu & Kashmir, calls this an Indian plan. Basically, a false flag operation by India.

Who benefits, who loses?

To put things simply. Pakistan loses, India gains tremendously.

Pakistani losses: Pakistan wanted to highlight India’s actions in Kashmir. But, ended up getting cut off from its own Eastern wing. By helping the Terrorists, Pakistan forces India’s hand to ban the overhead flights between the 2 wings.

Considering most of the troop movement used to happen using these overhead flights, under civilian disguise, this was a major blow to Pakistani war efforts and a disruption of troop movement.

Indian gains: Needless to say, India had nothing but to gain from these two idiotic youths taking their plane to Lahore. Even the Aircraft, as it turned out, was old and had no real value. No passengers were hurt(even though their lives were at risk). India gets a solid reason to ban the overhead flight privileges, stops the Pakistani troop movement, escalates the cost and time to transport the troops from West wing to the East for Pakistan.

When Pakistan jails the Terrorist accusing them of acting on behalf of India, India manages to ignite few protests against Pakistan by Kashmiris in Pakistan and outside of the Sub-Continent(Owning to pressure of overseas Kashmiris and the disquiet of Kashmiris in PoK, Pakistan had to release the Terrorist, who later gives up arms to pursue a peaceful resolution of Kashmir. I wonder why!).

Into the realm of speculation and conjecture

Now, with our bases covered, lets look at the interview of the high jacker, who now lives in India.

The interview can be found here:

“In a haircutting salon in Lal Chowk, I met a Kashmiri Border Security Force (BSF) officer. I told him I wanted to go to Pakistan. He agreed to help me cross the border provided I brought some information the BSF needed. I agreed and the BSF managed my clandestine entry into Pakistan through the Sialkot border.”

He was actually double-crossing the BSF. In Pakistan, Hashim was trained for the hijack.

“Maqbool Bhat said to highlight the Kashmir problem we must hijack an Indian plane. Javaid Mantoo, a retired pilot, helped familiarise me with a Fokker Friendship plane. He took me to Chaklala airport where I was allowed to see the plane from inside.”

After hijack training, Hashim crossed back into Kashmir from the Sialkot border.

“I boarded a bus, but the bus was stopped by police and I was caught with a pistol and a hand grenade. I was taken to a BSF interrogation centre. I told them how I had been trained along with three others for the hijack in Pakistan.

“I was asked by the BSF to keep a watch at the Srinagar airport. An advertisement appeared in a newspaper about the sale of a look-real pistol which could be used to scare away thieves. I ordered one by post. I fabricated a wooden hand grenade and painted it with metallic colour.”

After the episode, Pakistan alleges that Indian agencies conducted this false flag operation, by R&AW, tags one of the Terrorist as an Indian agent and tortures him and puts in jail. 

Now, tell me if this isn’t better than Argo!

Indira Gandhi, whom the liberated, free citizens of Bangladesh begin to call “Maa Durga”, deserves a lot of credit, for quickly using this as a justification for banning the flights, imposing a major tactical disadvantage on the Pakistanis. Apart from the CM of J&K saying this was an Indian operation, no accounts of this have been released by India and R&AW.

You can guess why – People in the aircraft(Indian citizens) were put at risk, intentionally, by the planners. Admitting this would create a controversy within India, as to why Indian civilians were put in harm’s way. India loses face at the international level, as India had long maintained that it did nothing to precipitate the war and war was forced upon it.

R&AW might not be as glamorous, or might have the technology of a CIA, but if this indeed, seems very likely it was, a R&AW operation, full marks to it. It achieved the desired result, with zero lives lost, no damage to the infrastructure and sowing the seeds of confusion in the opposing ranks. India gets what it wants – Stop movement of troops from West Pakistan to the East, thereby escalating the cost and the time required to transport the troops.

All of this using a Toy Pistol and a wooden “grenade”. And, we think CIA’s hunt of Osama was awesome!

5 Comments

Filed under Geo-Politics, India

Hafiz Saeed can be an Indian asset

Yes, you heard that right!

Hafiz Saeed, if used well, can turn out to be an advantage for India, from this point onward. Hear me out..

Hafiz Saeed has done great harm to India. Undeniable. A Terrorist. True.

But, it is also true that nobody can get to him in Pakistan. The Government of Pakistan has no real power. His services to the military of Pakistan will not be forgotten, as there are too many people sympathetic to his cause in the ranks. Everyday we see him on giving statements and interviews, it hurts us, angers us.

The trick here is to turn this into an advantage.

What is our objective? To protect India, to project to the world Pakistan’s real face.

Why was Osama being killed a greater feat than a low key Al Qaeda figure? Because he was a symbol. So is Hafiz Saeed. And, unlike Osama, he is not hiding in secrecy, but moving around freely in Pakistan.

This is the key.

Things will not be the same forever. Today Pakistan is notorious for Terror. Pakistan gets away with it as US depends on Pakistan to get into Afghanistan; and, Paksitan has been using this leverage wonderfully well. But, that disappears after 2014. When NATO packs up, the dependence on Pakistan evaporates too. Add to this the Northern Distribution Network (NDN) – which run through less hostile regions and the fact that there will be far less troops to service – NATO can be free of Pakistani shackles.

US will likely blackmail Pakistan with sanctions or punitive actions to fight its war and hunt down Al Qaeda in Af-Pak. How will it serve us? We can use Hafiz Saeed as our Osama; Make him a symbol, a larger than life Terrorist, who has killed Americans and Indians, to paint Pakistan in bad light; Use our lobby-machine in Washington and Brussels to get what we want: Dismantling of Terror infrastructure in Pakistan and bring to justice the Terrorists.

Pakistan is heavily dependent on US/EU countries. A majority of exports from Pakistan is to these countries. They close down their market to Pakistan, millions will be out of their jobs in Pakistan. Deny financial help from IMF and WB, Pakistan will not be able to pay their own bills. Impose sanctions, Pakistan will be at US/EU mercy.

But, will they do it? That is where we come in. Our influence with these countries is substantial. If we take people like Hafiz Saeed and put on a show, where people like Hafiz Saeed are the villain and a danger to world peace, we would have achieved a major propaganda win over Pakistan. Its not that hard also..

We have to help Pakistan make the transition to another Iran or North Korea. Unlike Iran, Pakistan has no minerals or resources to bank on and its impact on the world is minimal. Like North Korea has nukes and its sole benefactor is China. Look how North Korea is faring.. Or, how Iran is caving, slowly, but surely, under the combined US/EU sanctions.

I know this is not nearly as equivalent to the heinous crimes he has committed with Pakistan military’s help. But, sitting on our hands and do nothing about it is not an option as well. This is doable.

If it makes you feel better, Hafiz Saeed has done more harm to Pakistan, than he can ever do to India. He has sent thousands of people across LoC to be gunned down by our guys. The ideology he preaches has given birth to thousands of Pakistanis who have joined other Terrorist groups and killed other Pakistanis. Not to forget, every time a report features in the world media about the infamous Terrorist operating freely in Pakistan, it embarrasses Pakistan(Or, at least it should embarrass them).

India should get justice, in one way or the other. Inaction is not an option.

1 Comment

Filed under Geo-Politics, India

Islamic Terror and Poverty

I was reading this article the other day in The Hindu. It was about Kasab and is a brief of how he went on to become a Terrorist.

One line of the article caught my attention.

Born on July 13, 1987, at the small village of Faridkot in Pakistani Punjab’s Okara district, Kasab was born into a landless peasant family.

A question began to be born in my mind. Does Islamic Terror really exists because of poverty?

I did some Googling and found this particular titbit.

The perpetrators of the attacks on September 11th 2001 that killed thousands of unarmed civilians largely came from Saudi Arabia, a very wealthy oil country which has never been under European colonial rule but is itself the cradle of one of the world’s most brutal imperial traditions, as noted by the gifted author V. S. Naipaul.

Mohamed Atta has been identified by the FBI as the pilot of American Airlines Flight 11, the first plane to crash into the World Trade Center in New York City during the September 11, 2001 attacks. Atta was trained as an architect and pursued a master’s degree in city planning at the Hamburg University of Technology.

Not just that. The recent Indian Mujahideen men who were caught were Doctors, Engineers, Journalists… All highly educated men, willing to murder, even their fellow citizens and neighbours.

So globally, and locally in India, there are Muslim men who seem to turn to Terror.

Why is that? Does it have to some form of injustice meted out to them and their families? Or, is it due to poverty? But, them being Doctors and Engineers and Journalists does not seem much like they have suffered injustice and/or they are poor.

Lets park that IM issue for a bit..

What about the 9/11 Terrorists? As the article suggests they were not poor, nor were they ever were; nor were they illiterate, like Kasab. They didn’t even come from a country which was colonised to suggest they were carrying out some old-world grudge against the Western powers.

All incidents of hate Terrorism? What about cases like Anders Behring Breivik, who killed innocent people as form of protest against Europe’s growing multiculturalism? He was a rational man, who committed horrible crimes.

Yet, Breivik is a flash in the pan. Consider this.. There are approximately 2 Billion Christians in the world, followed by 1.5 Billion Muslims. There are also a Billion  Hindus.

How many Breiviks does the Christian world produce in a year? And, how many Mohammed Attas the Muslim world produces in a year? How many Terrorists ,or people who exhibit extremist tendencies, does the Hindu world manufacture? 

Clearly, poverty has nothing to do with violent behaviour. Neither does it have to do with the country of origin. Atta’s cause and Kasab’s cause was the same – “Islam”. The Terrorists who blew up trains in London on 7/7 too said in their tape that this had to do with the glory of Islam and that the Western world was conspiring against the Muslims and attacking them. They didn’t associate themselves with the country they lived and/or were born in, but with their Religions, either converted to or born to, exactly similar to the case of Indian Mujahideen.

Let us go back to India’s partition..

Muslim League comes up with the idea that Muslims are indeed a separate entity and deserve a separate state(Two Nation Theory). They took most of the seats in the elections with their idea that Islam is in danger in India. Atta and Kasab and Jinnah, people of different eras, nationalities and income levels, justified extreme violence – all in the name of Islam.

There seems to be greater chance of a Muslim resorting to Terror than a person from any other Religion. Saying things like this might  not be politically correct, but the trend disturbingly points to this. Admit this in a popular newspaper like The Hindu and you will be inundated with letters calling you Fascist. They would probably remind you of Hitler and his propaganda against the jews; and, warn you against painting other Religions in bad light. I agree with everything they would say, because I’ve thought of such things myself.

Now, back to IM and Islamic Terror in India. How would India’s Muslims take it if were you to point out this dangerous trend? I know I would not be happy and in stead of seeing the truth in them, see the one who is presenting such ideas as a fanatic, who is doing this to malign Islam and Muslims. Many already think the people being caught for as IM members are being framed by the security forces. A sort of victim mentality is at work.

Who is right, here? People who see Islamic Terror spreading without any proper cause or justification and advice caution? Or, people who want to be politically correct all the time, even if it means not looking at reality and obvious trends?

I will not attempt to answer these questions as I’ve not found a convincing answer. The day I do, you will hear from me…

14 Comments

Filed under Geo-Politics, Human Rights

Martin Niemöller about Pakistan?

First they came for the Sikhs, and I did not speak out
Because I was not a Sikh.

Then they came for the Christians, and I did not speak out
Because I was not a Christian.

Then they came for the Hindus, and I did not speak out
Because I was not a Hindus.

Then they came for the Ahmadis, and I did not speak out
Because I was not a Ahmadi.

Then they came for the Shias, and I did not speak out
Because I was not a Shia.

Then they came for me–and there was no one left to speak for me.

If you have read some similar stuff, you can pat yourself on the back, because you have. Martin Niemöller said these immortal words(which I have taken the liberty to adapt). Like Nazism dawned on the peaceful, cultured German people undetected and in stealth, Pakistan’s metamorphosis started in 1947 when that nation’s founder decided two sets of people cannot be together simply because they were from different Religions. The principle of division was just remodelled by the people of Pakistan: First to be targeted were the non-Muslims, later on some Muslim sects were declared non-Muslims.

As time went on, the number of non-Muslims fell from around 20% at the time of Partition to 3%, Ahmadis were declared to be non-Muslims and targeted. Hate, being a virus like creature, latched onto its host and spread. It was now the turn of the Shias.

India has to guard against a intolerant, violent Pakistan. When the Shias are eliminated or reduced to minuscule numbers, hate will start consuming the people who practiced it.

Pakistan is where the Indus river runs; a river from which India derived its name. Sikhism’s holiest places are in Pakistan. We have to contend with the fact that Pakistan’s decent into chaos is irreversible and we have to make sure the violence doesn’t spill over.

A sad end to a glorious land.

6 Comments

Filed under Geo-Politics, Human Rights, India's Freedom Struggle

Afghanistan: Possibilities and near Certainties

Indians, thanks to Pakistan being a buffer, hardly discuss about the implications of ongoing events in Afghanistan.  That is in a way understandable as India does not share a border with Afghanistan and there is no immediate impact of the chaos which routinely engulfs Afghanistan. But, that is a very simplistic view of things. After the Kandahar hijackings its certain that whatever happens in Afghanistan will affect us, may be not immediately but gradually.

The biggest question is what will happen after 2014, when NATO’s partial but substantial withdrawal from Afghanistan.

Now for the possibilities:

Scenario 1: NATO withdraws partially, Afghan security forces manage to keep the Taliban at bay

We often see reports of how utterly incompetent the current Afghan security forces are. Whilst you can’t expect them to function as efficiently as the NATO forces, but for counter-insurgency you need a certain degree of capacity. If the Afghan forces achieve that capacity and with the unending NATO weapon supplies and monetary support, this is possible.

But, many are saying Afghan security forces are ill-equipped to takeover from NATO forces when they leave.

Scenario 2: Complete Taliban takeover to pre-9/11 levels

This is the most scariest of all. The medieval Taliban taking over a large part of South Asia. This will have tremendous impact in the region for all neighboring powers.

Pakistan might be supporting these Taliban, but there is a very real and hotly debated aspect of the boost the Pakistani Taliban will get when they see their ideological equivalents few miles across the border dominating the region. Pakistan today already is heavily radicalized and according to latest surveys view US and India as greater threats than the Taliban.

Its clear that the Pakistanis Generals and the pro-military public do not foresee the danger that this tactic of supporting radicalized Islamists might bring.

Pakistan, being rated 13th most failed state(According to FP Magazine), has very little to lose. India has greater, grander aspirations. India has a lot to lose than Pakistan.

Scenario 3: De Facto partition of Afghanistan

This is a scenario that Robert Backwill speaks of. With Pakistani state support and safe havens the Taliban will have influence and eventual control of Pashtun areas in the south of Afghanistan and areas bordering Pakistan. With support from regional powers and continued NATO support the Afghan forces might be able to hold off the Taliban from advancing into other areas of Afghanistan. Even the most pro-Taliban will accept the fact that this time it will not be a walk over for Taliban into Kabul. There will be hard fighting.

This is the worst possible scenario for Pakistan as it has a sizable Pastun population in the areas bordering Afghanistan. Remember, even under the Taliban, the Afghans refused to accept Durand Line as a border insisting that all Pashtun areas belong to Afghanistan. Pakistan might very well be faced with the scenario of Pashtun nationalism.

I think the De-Facto partition of Afghanistan is a real possibility. Afghan Forces though poorly trained and motivated have money and weapons. Not a single country surrounding Afghanistan wants the Taliban as their neighbour, except, of course, Pakistan. NATO forces will not for sure leave the region and will provide all important Air support and not to mention the precision bombing using Drones.

Those are the 3 possibilities and all the 3 eventualities are on the table.

Now, with the certainties:

1) Afghanistan will be chaotic, violent and unstable. Duh! History tells us so and there are too many competing forces trying to outdo each other for stability to set in.

2) India will not face the direct and immediate consequences of any impending civil war in Afghanistan. Pakistan, gracefully, acts as a shield. (Thank you, Jinnah?)

3) The most devastating certainty for Pakistan: Sanctions and Isolation. Not many will disagree that US and Pakistan have conflicting interests and each have been at the other’s throat. Pakistan wants everything the free world doesn’t- The control of Afghanistan by the Islamists. Pakistan has already done much damage. Were it not for the leverage Pakistan has over the NATO forces, in the form of supply routes to Afghanistan, Pakistan would already have been sanctioned by now. Post-2014 this leverage will disappear as a) NATO has Northern Distribution Network(NDN) and b) Due to massive reduction in forces the load on the routes reduces tremendously and so do the costs of operating NDN.

4) US will not have “won” in Afghanistan, but would not have lost either. It came with the purposes of defeating Al Qaeda and has been very successful. It later took on the mantle of stabilizing Afghanistan, which is a near impossible task. There it will fail. US citizens, thousands of miles away, will be safe and prosperous. It is the Afghans and Pakistanis who will die(Not that I am blaming America but this is how it is).

5) Anyway the Pakistanis look there is nothing but disaster. If they support the Taliban, it will take on the free world and result in isolation and possible sanctions. If they take on the Taliban, it will face massive, bloody blow-back and a civil war-like situation. It is the fear of India’s influence in Afghanistan which makes Pakistan support the Taliban. India by not lifting a finger is hurting Pakistan. Talk about being consumed by hate!

Ultimately, nobody will be entirely happy at the end.

10 Comments

Filed under Geo-Politics