Saturday, November 13, 2010

US panel calls for Pakistan membership of G20…Really?

A US panel led by Richard Armitage and Samuel Berger has suggested Pakistan’s membership to the Group of Twenty of at least granting of an observer status stating it would enable “to connect with new power structures and familiarize it with emerging norms and responsible international behavior”. The headline published in DAWN newspaper on Saturday, November 13, 2010 caught my attention to go through thinking of it as a positive call. However, it had little to do so with my intentions.

The idea was more about the increased pressure on the call of ‘Do more’ on the war on terrorism. The panel has surely focused on threats to US from terrorism networks in Pakistan and had idolized ‘two realistic scenarios’ which could force change in US policy and strategy towards Pakistan. The focus was more of bringing attention to the ‘what if tomorrow US is attacked’ and then it would be too late and so that Pakistan should be dealt with fiercely or completely isolated and closer ties could be made with India at the expense of Pakistan. The heavy risks and costs to both Pakistani and Americans of these actions were though also termed.

Pakistani sovereignty is already under discussion of being invaded due to the drone attacks which may be targeted at the militants but kills other innocent people too. This is bound to cause a reaction in the long run. When President Obama talked about why Pakistan isn’t termed a terrorist state as an answer to a school girl during his visit to India, it had some ray of hope in it for Pakistan. But this news was a severe blow. Pakistani society which faces high inflation, insecurity, economic burden increased due to the floods and foreign debt is already struggling with internal domestic issues. The menace of terrorism has affected it more than anything else. Several innocent people fall victim to these attacks in Pakistan who have increased in frequency and more than anything else make life extremely insecure for the common man in Pakistan. The interest in terrorism is vested with few hands; the whole nation is already suffering from it and in a tragic state because of it. In this state, such news coming from the US is a tremendous blow to the surviving hopes within the nation.

There surely is a huge need for efforts to fight terrorism but the military expenditure is something Pakistan just can’t afford currently. It not like that terrorism is an admired thing in Pakistan, it surely is not, it is one of the most hated things but replying to it with fire would only increase the reaction. The already done actions of curbing the menace have brought drastic increase in the attacks already because of which the Pakistanis have suffered losing precious human lives, their homes and loved ones. When the fight on terrorism is for everyone’s benefit towards a better world and so many concerns are aired over it than the Pakistani sentiments, conditions and sovereignty should also be taken in to considerations.  Statements of strategy and pressure would only demotivate the efforts towards the war on terrorism. Pakistan may have its differences with India but I personally think that with sincere political will on both sides they can bring peace and harmony in the region. The war on terrorism can be better fought with united efforts and strategies against terrorism. The blame game, pressure tactics and such statements would only extend matters to an adverse end. A change in the policies and strategies is surely essential against terrorism and towards peace building however, it should be free from biasness to do the trick.