Pakistan to US: Get Out and Stay Out

The Pakistani Parliament just released their Guidelines for Revised Terms of Engagement with USA/NATO/ISAF. It states flatly that “Pakistan’s sovereignty shall not be compromised.” And that includes no more drones.

The US footprint in Pakistan must be reviewed. This means (i) an immediate cessation of drone attacks inside the territorial borders of Pakistan, (ii) the cessation of infiltration into Pakistani territory on any pretext, including hot pursuit; (iii) Pakistani territory including its air space shall not be used for transportation of arms and ammunition to Afghanistan.

This should not come as too much of a surprise. Pakistani authorities have been saying as much for months, especially after U.S. warplanes killed 24 Pakistani soldiers at an outpost in the Mohmand Agency last November (this document says those responsible for the attack “should be brought to justice”). Military supply routes to NATO troops in Afghanistan have been closed to the U.S. since then and, even though the Obama administration restarted the drone program in January, Islamabad has consistently condemned them as “unlawful.” Back in December, Pakistan held a high-level conference with the explicit aim of rethinking the U.S.-Pakistani relationship.

The last decade of U.S. war in Af-Pak has not been good for Pakistan. The war – and especially Obama’s surge in 2009, which Islamabad opposed – has dramatically increased militant activity along the Durand Line and severely destabilized the state’s security situation, including unauthorized incursions of U.S. troops on Pakistani soil. Added to this is of course the Obama adminstration’s institutionalization of extra-judicial execution and mass murder of innocent men, women, and children in the drone war. The high-end estimate for total casualties in the U.S. drone war, according to the Bureau of Investigative Journalism, is 3,097, including up to 811 reported civilians (at least 175 of them children). There are few bi-lateral relationships that would tolerate this.

Washington’s aims in Afghanistan and Pakistan have run counter to Islamabad’s interests since the very beginning. Even prior to the U.S. invasion, Pakistan has preferred Taliban authority in Afghanistan to help counter Indian influence and facilitate commerce between Central Asian states and Pakistani ports. While the decision-makers in Pakistan pretty much view the Af-Pak border as an illegitimate, arbitrary creation of the British after WWII, they seem willing to accept whatever corrupt, cockamamie government in Kabul Washington “leaves behind.” They probably prefer some kind of power-sharing deal with the Taliban, so that the ISI has at least half their work cut out for them trying to peddle Taliban influence from behind the scenes.

The Obama administration has been losing its grip in Afghanistan in parallel with Pakistan. They seem to have two points of leverage over Pakistan at this point: exorbitant inflow of military and economic aid and India. More than $8 billion dollars has been allocated to the Pakistani government since 2009, and another $2.3 billion is slated for 2013. This is obviously a huge sticking point for that supremely corrupt military regime. China appears trepidatious about filling that role as Pakistan’s lonely ally against its archenemy India. So, as strong as these Revised Terms of Engagement are, Pakistan probably isn’t willing to dispel America just yet. Indeed, the statement says that the “US-Indo civil nuclear agreement” is unfair unless Washington is prepared to do the same with Pakistan.

This analysis is revealing because it becomes clear very quickly that very little of this has anything to do with the U.S. and that a decade of turbulent, savage, murderous, misguided engagement in Afghanistan-Pakistan has been damaging and counterproductive. In the context of an ever-expanding global military empire, decade-long net losses shouldn’t deter the necessity of hegemonic state policy. But any sensible foreign policy should take heed of Pakistan’s new stay-out-of-our-affairs declaration. In fact, a similar approach of not trying to militarily dominate another state should be adopted for Afghanistan. And India, for that matter. China too.

10 thoughts on “Pakistan to US: Get Out and Stay Out”

  1. "This is obviously a huge sticking point for that supremely corrupt military regime."

    The above sentence in the report does not make sence because the last time I checked Pakistan is a full democracy and has been for the last few years.

    1. Isn't there a contest going on in Pakistan to see who can be the most corrupt….. with the military, the (puppet) politicians and late starters, the judiciary…. Of course taking bribes from the U,S, NATO doesn't count as corruption in "Western" main stream Media…

      Yeah…. Selling the "privilege" of death by drone…. of their own citizens to the foreign invader and occupier for "aid" payments, not corrupt in "moral" Western minds…!!! They are "exceptional" (in their own minds) and therefor what THEY do is good and right…!!!

    2. It depends on the level of obedience of a country toward the US that determines whether that country is a model democracy or a corrupt regime.

      Not only was Pakistan referred to as a democracy in the region, but declared one of our most important allies and friend in the war on terror. It now officially despises us. We, the US, are taking over number one spot in earning animosity from the peoples of the world, even our good friends are losing respect for our actions (You will know them through their deeds). This is all so sad, and pathetic.

  2. U.S. looking to end it's intercourse with (on!!) Pakistan…??? Someone is getting screwed, and that someone is the citizen in the U.S. and in Pakistan…!!!

  3. With the Iranian pipeline becoming more of a reality with each passing day, the "west's" focus has shifted away from the carrot and stick gunboat diplomacy (flavored with destabilization) to outright Balkanization vis a vis Balochistan. Guess which province the pipeline is set to run through? If they succeed, there will be a military base that would make Camp Bondsteel look puny in comparison. Everything would flow through Balochistan: gargantuan amounts of drugs, weapons, energy, minerals, and money. There will be some ruthless gangster in charge of the local operations, a Hashim Thaci clone basically, and the Banksters/Globalists would have won yet another major victory.

    Pakistan will be broken up by using the terrorist meme via bombings, drone attacks, Haqqani network, et al in the Indic and mixed provinces, and the democracy/freedom trope in Balochistan.

    Can the Pakistanis stop this? Can they and Iran secure China and Russia's commitment to the pipeline and enough military aid to push the "west" back towards the negotiating table and away from the dimly lit back alleys? Doubtful, but here's to hoping.

  4. If Pakistan can demand US keep out and stay out,then Afghanistan can demand the very same thing from Pakistan,Keep out and stay the hell out of Afghanistan with your corrupt nation and pig ISI agents.
    Free Afghanistan.

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