Is Pakistan a “scapegoat”?

Once again, Pakistan is under immense pressure and is used as a scapegoat for the US failure in Afghanistan. The US has a history of playing with Pakistan with such dirty tricks many times. Whenever the US needs Pakistan, always extend the hands of friendship and cooperation and common interests, etc, but always, after using Pakistan, betray Pakistan, and some cases put sanctions on Pakistan. In the past, on many occasions, the US achieved its strategic goals with the help of Pakistan, but this time, it is rather different, the US failed in Afghanistan and wanted a scapegoat to blame for its own failures.

The US spent two long-decades, more than enough time, fighting in Afghanistan. The US was as usual formatted an alliance of 46 countries, and deployed around 150,000 troops at peak times, used all possible lethal weapons, modern technologies, advanced tactics, and spent trillions of dollars in the Afghan war. Sacrificed thousands of soldiers and many more injured, with some of them serious and lifetime disabilities. Yet, could not gain control in any part of Afghanistan.

It was the Taliban who kept the hold on major parts of Afghanistan and currently, holding almost 90% of the country. Taliban were projected as backward, barbaric, conservative, ignorant, uncivilized, extremists, and terrorists, etc. Yet, it was quite opposite. As the leadership of the Taliban is highly educated and some of them graduated from American and European Universities. They are equipped with all necessary modern knowledge and expertise in Economics, Finance, Technology. Engineering, Politics, Laws, etc., in addition to religion.

Taliban are being blamed as terrorists, but it is the US who was begging to negotiate with them for a peace deal. The US administration of President Trump, approached Pakistan, seeking help in bringing the Taliban to the negotiating table. Pakistan, as usual, helped graceless Americans and brought the Taliban to negotiating table. After having several rounds of talks and discussions, finally reached a peace deal in February 2020. President Trump fulfilled his commitment and withdrew a major part of troops according to the deal.

However, President Joe deviated from the deal and delayed the troops’ withdrawal. Whereas, the Taliban stood firm on their part of the commitment and have not attacked US troops during the withdrawal period. It must be appreciated and acknowledged that the Taliban were honoring the deal, whereas the US was deviating from the deal. How the US signed a peace deal with so called Terrorists, and yet not honoring it.

Taliban are advancing rapidly, without out any much resistance. Most of the time, the Afghan National Army, surrenders and join them along with weapons and ammunition. Yet, the US is trying to halt the peace process and instigating the Afghan Government to attack Taliban positions and providing them air support. The recent airstrikes in Afghanistan are causing collateral damage and against the spirit of the peace deal signed between the US and Taliban. Imagine, while the US was sitting in Afghanistan, along 46 nation’s alliance, 150,000 troops, yet could not win over Taliban, how it can be possible to defeat Taliban by airstrikes only. It might damage the peace and stability of Afghanistan, is the US aimed to destroy the country only, after having withdrawn its troops safely?

The US is pressurizing Pakistan for opening its borders to Afghan refugees. We have been hosting Afghan refugees for four decades and at peak times up to five million. Now there are around three million already. Pakistan’s economy can not afford any additional burden at all. Furthermore, the social damage to our society was enormous. Intolerance, extremist, terrorism, drugs and gun culture, crime rate, etc, were the additional curse on Pakistan. There is complete consensus in the nation, not to allow any further refugees to enter Pakistan. It was the US and allies, who caused the Afghan people to migrate, they should open their countries for Afghan refugees. Pakistan can not afford to accept any responsibilities for American misdeeds and actions.

The US is pressurizing Pakistan to provide military bases or air routes for airstrikes in Afghanistan, the whole nation is unanimous, have a firm stance that, Pakistan can not be part of any war and can not facilitate any aggression, Pakistan extends its full support to any peace move or welfare initiatives only. The US has accepted its defeat and a defeated nation has no morals to dictates others. Taliban is the winner and may not necessarily obey American’s dictation.

Pakistan is a highly diverse society, yet, united on national interests. Although the US has been cultivating some disgruntled, destitute, or corrupt and greedy people to act on American instructions or lobby for the American agenda, they might be no longer effective anymore. The nation is united and awakened, and will not accept to be a “Scape Goat” for American mistakes and wrongdoings.  Pakistan has learned several bitter experiences in the past, and may not repeat the same gaian and again.

Prof. Engr. Zamir Ahmed Awan
Prof. Engr. Zamir Ahmed Awan
Prof. Engr. Zamir Ahmed Awan, Sinologist (ex-Diplomat), Non-Resident Fellow of CCG (Center for China and Globalization), National University of Sciences and Technology (NUST), Islamabad, Pakistan.