Okay Americans, you have a democracy, a constitution that guarantees your rights of liberty, free speech and a rule of law. Simply put, no government official in your country can crash through your door in the early hours of morning to beat you up, kidnap you to be tortured at length or more simply, put a bullet through your head.
Okay, so you have an incompetent for a president, but then you have no else to blame but yourselves, as a majority of you elected him. Fine, you might have made a human mistake, but then at least you are saved by a political system that gets rid of him once he serves his term (or gets impeached).
Yes, it was extremely tragic that some 2973 people died during the September 11, 2001, attacks. Many of us were devastated by the loss of these hundreds of innocent civilian lives.
(By the way, we are also emotionally distraught by the estimated 64,500 innocent Iraqi civilian men, women and children who have died so far in the aftermath to the war aimed at eradicating those never-to-be-discovered WMDs)
But here is my question:
We in Pakistan also want to have liberty, freedom of speech and a rule of law. Why is it that the US Administration persists in supporting a despot who is denying us our basic rights as human beings?
In today’s Pakistan, a country where the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court is illegally held in confinement, then physically manhandled and then put on trial on mendacious charges, can any ordinary citizen hope for a modicum of justice? The clear answer is no.
For example, we have hundreds of people ‘missing’, that is they have been picked up by mysterious ‘agency’ personnel who refuse to be answerable in any court of law. Why? Because they act for Musharraf. And no, these missing people are not typically religious extremists - a large number of them happen to be Musharraf’s political opponents from the provinces of Sindh and Balochistan who have been labelled as ‘enemies of the state’.
Reality states that Bush’s so-called ‘War on Terror’ has allowed his supporting cast to create their own Guantanamos all over the place.
Right now a majority of the civilians in Pakistan are demanding their basic fundamental rights. And what are these? An independent judiciary, a free press, a rule of law, and free and fair elections. Not really much for 165 million people on this God’s earth to ask for, is it?
So then is why the US opposing the people of Pakistan by propping up Musharraf?
The answer might be simple as this: Bush has blundered badly in his ‘War on Terror’; Iraq has been a complete debacle and Afghanistan is shaping to be that way. The US had been counting on Musharraf without any ‘Plan B’ or ‘Plan C’. So the US Administration has foolishly decided to cling onto him as if he offers some kind of life boat to a sinking ship.
The problem is that Musharraf has been 1st mate on Bush’s ship from the day it set forth and is no position to provide a miracle rescue. In fact, the situation is often the reverse; he has been counting on US support and largesse to protect him during his times of crisis.
So the basic point is Bush-Cheney & Co have goofed up badly and there is no earthly reason why 165 million Pakistanis should be made to pay for someone else’s wilful blunders. But by continually propping up Musharraf, Washington is behaving towards 165 million Pakistanis as if we are of no consequence – in other words relegating us to a level of collateral human fodder.
That is why we are coming to despise the USA.
US Foreign Policy