Opinion Pak Affairs

Drones: Dangerous in Both Way

Answering ‘what’ ‘where’ ‘when’ ‘whom’ and ‘how’ and ‘why of an incident is job of journalist in an objective manner. Had adopted a balanced approach almost always and left on the readers to decide what is right and what is wrong giving both sides of the picture but today aspire to give direction to readers about this hypocritical attitude of USA in unilateral Drone attacks within the Pakistani territory.

Where are the Human Rights activists, where are the promoters of International Law and where United Nations Security Council burying its head in hatchet. America is topping the position in all three fields apparently; so to answer “why” need to inquire where they are engaged when the International boundries of Pakistan are being ruthlessly violated and NATO helicopters are intruding and killing innocent Pakistanis on pretext of speculative presence of militants in tribal areas of Pakistan.

What an irony!!! when they kill it is self-defense or preemptive measures and when we kill we are terrorists. How is that only Americans live and have right on this earth and rest of the world does not have right of living. 180 Million people are left with no integrity & self respect. I had to say “unfortunately” oil tankers on ablaze and closure of the Pakistan- Afghanistan Torkhum boarder from where supplies to NATO troops in Afghanistan are sent; has proved that it is impossible for US to align Pakistani way of thinking in accordance with their longings. Four aerial violation in less than a week, killing soldiers, reacting to the incident, partial shut down of NATO supply route and lodged a protest with the NATO command in Brussels, demanding an apology has united the nation and their fury can be witnessed against America. According to PEW research out of 10, 6 Pakistanis are against America and these aerial violations and drones have aggravated the situation. Now 10 might think that America is behind the deteriorating situation in Pakistan.

No more revealing fact is most of the Americans are unaware of the political game on pretext of “self-defence”. They themselves have been played by their government for long. According to one of my American friend Tommy Schmitz writer of a book “Tokyo Twins”

I wonder how well the US general population understands these clear feelings that, I would think, most Pakistanis have. I am totally against violence, ever. And have objected to our “retaliations” for 9/11 since early 2003 (yep, I am a slow learner sometimes). But I am totally in favor of the sharing of feelings among large populations who are clueless about each other. And in this case, and from this side of things, my guess is that the average American doesn’t know *anything* about Pakistan or Pakistanis.

He himself is naive in understanding the fact that what and how Pakistanis suffer when a drone or a suicide bomber ruthlessly murder the several dozen Pakistanis in time of clicking fingers. Bereaved families comprising of youth and infants and women surely do not have feelings of the love and affections for those who were involved in martyrdom of their beloved ones furthermore their sufferings are neither addressed nor even articulated. Leaving them in quagmires of plethora of problems will start unending chain on sufferings. Thus when i pronounce that Unilateral Drone attacks by NATO forces and Talibanisation are intertwined; i have strong footings to back it.

All the American minds are not yet polluted with the insinuating media reports against the militant dwelling in safe heavens of Pakistani tribal areas. Communicating with such people who have helped in time of Earth quake and now supporting flood ridden people of Pakistan in hardest times of history; always raise brows what are the elements pronouncing America as vigilante in whole world and Why. Also why America is involved in killing and murdering innocent people knowing enemies are increasing, only power can not be impetus… there is something that smells..

I have never denied the fact of presence of militants or Talibans in Pakistan; but always argued for a small number of people why to push whole nation or country into hell? Several examples are present to second my statement in history of world. Moreover Pakistan is a heterogeneous society with variety of cultural and societal norms; with different set of perceptions. Time has passed to compromised conscience and adopting a quiet approach; America is breeding of Talibans by killing innocent civilians with drones or direct violation. The vaccum created after Soviet war; Talibans had no place to go; only then they started these activities or perhaps they were left to do so.

Pakistan and Pakistanis have been left backed-into-a-corner situation where USA is perpetuating their miseries; thus clearly not only producing Enemies for itself but ramifications Pakistan can face as after effects are far too dangerous. Being vulnerable Pakistanis become volatile and vengeful on being afflicted. America need to understand and to make the NATO forces understand that coercion is not only the solution for problems. But peaceful co-existence is not that old fashioned term to be applied.

I really want to salute the maturity of Pakistani government at least once for taking a strong stand to protect the sovereignty of Pakistan and it people. Pakistan has decided to only re-open a supply route for coalition troops in Afghanistan once public anger over NATO incursions eases and security improves. Whole nation request the government that Pakistan should not open the route till diplomatically it is vowed that these violations will not be repeated. Pakistan will be respected as front line ally in war on terror not mere slave to follow instructions.

Pakistan has already faced alot and no more capacity for further trials in pursuit of war on terror. We all have raised voice for Dr. Afia; hundreds of people in Pakistan are missing; suicide attacks; unstable political government and premonition of another military rule; above all slogans of “do more”. Pakistani government has got one chance to regain popularity by listening to masses and promoting their voice in international community as their representatives. We as nation do not want to be isolated also aspire for the lost dignity. Wish to see world a safer place and want to play an active role in making this world a better place with international community.

About the author

Rubab Saleem

Rubab Saleem is Editor of Pakistan Times


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  • The only thing I see missing from the article is whether the Govt would really have the power to combat the militants. In the past they have and then the militants have struck right at the heart of the country, seemingly at will. If the govt is not strong enough to deal with it, then the populace would still turn against the govt. If they deal with it in a totalitarian manner, military rule, etc, then they will still have enemies who will highlight their heavy handedness.

    As for the drones, I wonder how much the Pakistan govt really is out of the loop on this. In my book, they seem to be in bed with the Obama govt in chasing the Taliban and Al Queda militants.

    Also, are people confusing NATO with the US, because really they should not. NATO’s force is run by NATO, not by the US. NATO is made up of 17 countries mostly European and all of them independent from the US. Of course the US is providing the largest amount of forces and support due to the fact it has the largest force of the 17 countries to begin with. But in the end, it is still NATO.

    • @Semipro! connectedness in both US and Pakistani government and US involvement in the decisions of NATO policies come from US; as they share the major chunk in forces. i have never confused both NATO and US but only the anti-America sentiment is on so high.. also i have mentioned a vigilante pronouncement about America is there and that is y?
      made me laugh that “they seem to be in bed with the Obama govt in chasing the Taliban and Al Qaeda militants” at least some one has realized Pakistan is doing to fight them.

  • A good piece of literature! Article or a column! Whatever you call it.
    Yes! Our voice will be heard. They make cartoons of Prophet, they open bars and name them after Mecca, they burn Quran(they didn’t do it only because they thought it will increase death rate of their soldiers),they rape our mothers and sisters, they attack our homes…. and what do we do? We raise voices! WE raise voices and hope that our voice will be heard. No Sir! We are sadly mistaken. It looks like that we dont read history and also dont understand this world. Lets come out of the fantasy world.
    Might is right! Become mighty….even your wrong will become right. Otherwise keep on raising voices. Voices which are lower than the sounds of their guns.

  • very well written and i totally agree on the point that america is breeding talibans ……… i liked that stance of pakistani forces on nato’s behaviour ……… but what hurt me the most was that the army was quiet till those NATO’s forces were killing innocent peoples but the moment they killed their own soldiers our army reacted furiously …. isnt that a double standard …. army is for people of pakistan not themselves. 🙁

  • Brilliant Attempt… I think, ISAF and Americans are trying to check the temperature by these airspace violations and attacks. Serious issue is that all the oil tankers are hit in center of Pakistan last night. Do we have Taliban and Terrorist present in Islamabad & Shikarpur Sindh? Should govt start an operation cleanup there? Govt re-action for first time was timely in last 10 years.

    I think Pakistan & Pakistanis had already paid higher price due to these drone attacks. If you try to study the reports about all suicide attacks on govt were from suiciders residents of drone struck areas. According to these reports, 90% suiciders are from FATA and specially from North and South Waziristan.

    • True Akmal!
      first time timely action in ten years..
      90% are the suicide bombers from FATA and Agencies; that’s why i said talibanisation and drones are intertwined..

  • Well First things first. Yes the coalition government headed by the PPP sure deserves a salute for taking up a decision finally. A timely one too. Second thing, no one is confused over here in between the NATO and USA, but the matter of fact is to the masses here in Pakistan, the war in Afghanistan is a war US is fighting against the Taliban and Al-Qaeda. So to say the least even if you involve the whole world and make allies with them to fight against the same elements, the war will still be known as an American war or American’s retaliation after the brutal 9/11 attacks in New York. Third, under no circumstances, let me be very specific under no circumstances, Pakistanis as a nation will tolerate the continuous violations of Pakistan’s international borders. No matter its NATO, US or any other country in the world. We are a sovereign, independent state and we will oppose this violation to the last drop of our blood and will not compromise our sovereignty at any cost. Yes we are allies to the US and the NATO forces fighting in the Afghanistan but being pronounced an ally and being treated as one are two different things. They will have to understand this before we can move any further from this place.
    The Pakistani Prime Minister rightly called upon the NATO to react and apologize and assure us that no further incidents of such kind will take place in future. This is the voice of the masses here in Pakistan. Pakistanis believe that the right to react within the Pakistan is for the Pakistani troops only and if they have any information regarding any presence of such elements in Pakistan, they better share with us instead of taking the lead to break into our air space and violate our territorial boundaries.
    The political situation in Pakistan is already heated up and the majority of people are sensing a collapse of the system again which was restored after nine years of ruthless, brutal and lawless dictatorship. We have paid a huge prize for it including the martyrdom of Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto Shaheed. At a time like this the PPP led government which is termed as the most populous party of the country, can not afford to shut their eyes anymore on such incidents to risk their own political existence in the masses. The allied forces will have to rethink their strategies here. A civilian killed on the either side of the border should be regretted and treated as the same loss. Concrete steps should be taken to avoid such killings or else things will just end up being further messy which no one wants for sure.
    Give Respect to Expect the Same in Return too.

  • American double standards stand exposed before the entire world, but it is a matter of deep concern that ruling class of Asian countries and specially Indo-Pak rulers are drool of US imperialism .Since its birth that US imperialism is the greatest threat to the entire world that it has been acting as a world gendarme bullying, interfering, subverting, oppressing, and exploiting the entire world. The world can not achieve real freedom and independence without destroying American Imperialism. It is time to the entire people of world standup and fight.

  • Ms.Rubab
    In your article you have mention that “Where are the Human Rights activists” the fact is that human rights activists neither come as aliens nor angels. They have born in this world and society itself. It is the responsibility of people like you to create awareness among the people. Educate them, encourage them. Defiantly people will come forward to work against the human rights violation. One thing should keep in mind we have to speak first for ourselves, raise the voice against atrocities. We should not depend on others that they will speak for us. So write and speak and I will assure you a large people movement will build that will kick out the blood sucking American imperialistic forces. I want to remind all the readers of PT that once a great revolutionary poet Faiz Ahmad Faiz said
    Boal ke Lub Azaad hain Tere (SPEAK YOUR LIPS ARE FREE).Yaad Rakhiye Boalna Zindagi hai, Aour Khamushi Mout. I request all to SPEAK. Whatever you must SPEAK
    Ms.Rubab! I think your article is one step forward towards to create awareness among the masses and to encourage them to raise the voice against atrocities .keep it up and “Hum Honge Kaamyab ek din”

  • Well written article though understandably a bit emotional. The fact is that US and the western world have coined phrases like “in self-defence” to suit their interests. Do you recall the Gulf of Sidra incident when the USN engaged Libyan planes in “self defence”? The violation of Pak sovereignty, in this case, is even more blatant; knowing well that Pakistan has got itself into an unenviable situation. A few years back when Indian Home Minister LK Advani mooted the idea of hot-pursuit in “self-defence” in POK, it drew adverse reactions from US and others. And now they do exactly the same! As far as aftermath of 9/11 is concerned, I am given to understand that US spurned the offer of assistance given by the Indian PM in favour of Pakistan since US felt that Pakistan could be given a “no-brainer” whereas India being a democracy would debate it for days. By the way, we did exactly that when US asked us to send troops to Iraq. The moral of the story is to strengthen democracy in Pakistan by people’s power and not to put the country in a situation that invites such conduct.

  • IMPO: I fully support drone strikes they are most safest way to eliminate dangerous threats emerging from tribal region of pakistan
    specially North Waziristan.PPl also argued that it also caused co-lateral damage and loss of civilian lives.

    My dear friends air vehicle at 30000 ft has very little space to avoid loss of lives.Drones also killed many key figures like al-qaeda and taliban who were perpetrating more terrorist attacks against pakistan and its allies

    Cases like Faisal shahzad has sent us a clear reminder that we cant afford to let them off the hook.Keep hitting them where it hurts most but avoid co-lateral damage.

  • obama admin said cancer is pakistan and pak govt is ignoring it and world community can not afford to deny this fact.Their mission in Afghanistan is about to end now they have to move forward to next destination PAKISTAN! Last night US general and ambassador apologized and such incidents like targeting pak forces will be avoided in future but they never said they will stop cross border attacks 🙂

    • @ijqureshi actually US wants to exit from Afghanistan and views safe way via Pakistan.. Pakistan is part and parcel of Afghanistan policy,.. few days back GEO aired an interview of Hikmat Yaar taliban head with Saleem Safi… it was an old footage that was presented as new one.. so i am also smelling rat..

      World knows how pakistan is going to be on hit in coming days.. Pakistan needs to take a strong stand.. i guess that should be pragmatic one.. we can not survive alone..

  • Good piece of thought! Pakistan is already having too many problems …like internal terrorism & Border conflict.America is a ruling boss!But as far as their fight (or terrorism) against terrorism is considered, Pakistan is not in a safe place.Bringing Musharraf back to power by replacing Zardari is another concern,though I don’t think current rule is satisfactory for people.So, in this scenario, people needs a stable and uncorrupted government.Talibanism is a virus that is spreading in all over Pakistan,making it a centre of terrorism. To combat this evil, Pakistan needs a strong person.May god bless your country!