Addressing a public rally at Mailsi, some 50km from the Islamist -Jihadist haven
of Bahawalpur in Pakistan’s Southern Punjab, on Sunday, Mar 6, Prime Minister
Imran Khan ventilated his fury on the US and the West, claiming that his
benighted country is not a ‘slave’ of any nation.
It was his response to a joint letter from 23 European envoys in Islamabad, urging
him to “to join them in condemning Russia’s actions in Ukraine”, and “to voice
support for upholding the UN Charter and the founding principles of international
Though unusual for diplomats to go public with such appeals, the envoys clearly
saw Imran khan’s Moscow visit as ‘accepting without protest’ the Russian action
against Ukraine. Considered as ill-timed, the visit was facilitated by China; Prime
Minister Khan’s three- hour long meeting with President Vladimir Putin took
place as the Russian forces were marching towards Kyiv, the capital and largest
city of Ukraine.
At one time, Pakistan liked to direct all its wrath at India; it still does, but lately
Pakistan also includes the US in the category of countries to be hated. It is as
much under the Chinese (Yuan?) influence as a sequel to the Biden snub.
The US President has neither telephoned the Pakistani leader nor invited him to
the White House since the end of the Trump era. Rubbing salt (also chillies?) on
the hurt Pak ego, President Joe Biden has had several interactions with Narendra
Modi, the Indian prime minister.
From the tone and tenor of his Mailsi speech, it is clear that the Pakistani leader
thinks the Russians have done nothing wrong. It is an indication of how anxious
he is to please China, and be embraced by the Russians, and, thus, twiddle his
thumb at India, a long-time friend of Russia.
Between Russia and Pakistan, who needs the other more is a debatable issue.
Given its recurring energy crisis, and ballooning trade deficit, Islamabad badly
needs to court Moscow.
Efforts to cultivate Russia may not be counted as a ‘slavish’ attitude, but then
how would one describe Imran Khan’s refusal to acknowledge the repression of
the Uighurs by the Chinese?
The reason for his exasperation becomes all too obvious when he asked (while
decrying the West on questioning Pakistan’s ‘neutrality’ on Ukraine) why the
Western envoys had not written a similar letter to India for what is happening in
the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir.
India, like Pakistan, has refused to join the majority of nations that have
condemned the Russian attack. But the vexatious Imran believes that bombing a
sovereign nation (Ukraine) is the same thing as Indian security personnel
protecting Jammu and Kashmir from Pakistani proxies who have been bleeding
Kashmir and some other parts of India for more than three decades.
Imran is also incensed by the abrogation of special status of Jammu and Kashmir,
as though he has jurisdiction over the Indian state. He needs to realise that the
special status was something granted by the Indian constitution. Pakistan has no
role what so ever nor can it interfere in such matters, which are in the Indian
Let him be told that India is no ‘slave’ of Pakistan and shall never be, no matter
how hard he tries; not even with all the help from Pakistan’s ‘iron brother’ China.
Imran Khan, who refuse to look beyond their nose, ranting against the West for
assuming his country to be its ‘slave’ is downright hypocritical. For decades,
Pakistan was doing the bidding of Washington as part of the anti-Soviet bloc. The
very Afghan jihad orchestrated from the Islamic schools of Pakistan was at the
behest of the West, as he himself keeps saying.
As the US of America became wiser to Pakistani duplicity during the ‘war on
terror’ and started to give it a cold shoulder, Pakistan has become a virtual
province of China. The foreign office of Pakistan could well be an extension of
the Chinese foreign office. If this is not slavery what else is?
Imran Khan says his country helped the US and the West during the ‘war on
terror’ and during the Cold War era in the fight against the erstwhile Soviet Union
but got nothing in return; not even gratitude. He blames the military dictator Gen
Pervez Musharraf for dragging Pakistan into the ‘war on terror’ and claims that
had he been in charge of the country he would have never done so.
Musharraf did join the Americans but did he have a choice? President Bush the
junior, had threatened to bomb Pakistan to ‘stone age’ if it did not support the
fight against global terrorism which sprouted from the bad lands of Pakistan.
What worried Musharraf most was not the fear of his country being bombed to
the ‘stone age’—a rhetorical expression—but the more realistic prospect of
forgoing all the goodies that the Americans regularly bestowed on Pakistan—
military hardware, easy visa and immigration rules for the Pakistani elite besides
the greenbacks in plenty.
How ironic that Imran Khan after studying at a prestigious UK university
(Oxford) and marrying (later divorced) a British Jewish heiress has got addicted
to berating of the West. It is surely known to him that most Pakistanis who are
being brainwashed into hating the US, would, given the chance, migrate to the
very Eldorado. When Pakistanis continue to yearn for life in the West, Imran says,
it treats Pakistan as a ‘slave’?
Imran pretends to be unaware that while participating in the US-led ‘war on
terror’, Pakistan received billions of dollars which its leaders grabbed with both
their hands. Most of the American monetary aid intended for Afghanis fighting
the Soviet occupation on the 1980s went into the pockets of Pakistani generals
and some key political figures.
So did many of the arms and ammunition which were appropriated by Pakistan’s
ISI to arm terrorists trained to fight in Kashmir and to make India bleed with
thousands of cuts.
Put simply, there is every reason for Imran Khan to express gratitude to the
Americans and the West for looking the other way as Pakistan went about its
For long Pakistan’s economy has been dependent on the generous flow of
American dollars, later complimented by monetary and other aid from the Saudis
and China, besides the Brettonwoods twins. All this aid was cut in the bail out
mode, making Pakistan one of the most heavily indebted nations in the world.
Can Pakistan exercise its independence when every Pakistani owes more than a
thousand US dollars to the outside world?
Imran Khan needs to make a reality check. Without much ado. Ranting at the
West may offer him a few brownie points from his domestic jihadi audience but
leads neither him nor Pakistan anywhere more so when his very government is
facing the onslaught of combined Opposition, which is working overtime to
unseat him through a no confidence motion in Parliament.