IN reply to a question by an Indian author, Sheikh Mujibur Rahman when he was PM of Bangladesh, said that he wanted to remain in Pakistan because whenever a sense prevails on military Junta of Pakistan, I should be there to talk to them. The question was – you came to know about military operation one day earlier before it commenced and asked top leadership of the party to leave for India except Dr Kamal Hossain; a senior stalwart of his party. He and you both were to stay back. In a military crackdown, you could have also been killed. Why did you take so much risk? A number of reasons could be attributed to his decision of staying back in Pakistan however, most striking reason appears to be that he wanted to keep his independence to cut the deal with Pakistan. One becomes hostage when he is in foreign land. He is no more owner of his own destiny. It is mortgaged. He has to follow their commands. The devil be also given his due if it belongs to him. The man deserves appreciation.
Now we have leadership which hastens to slip to alien land when heat of own misdoings touch them. They desperately seek refuge there exclusively for own sake at any cost. They do not exhibit foresight, courage and sense of history. These traits are foreign to them because they are void of self-esteem and altruism. For power, material possessions and life, they could fall to any low. Earlier it was Altaf Hussian in the UK who played in foreign hands as a text book suggests and caused harm to Pakistan immeasurably before becoming a history. Now it is Nawaz Sharif in the UK with same demand as of Altaf Hussian; a refuge. He would never comeback until guaranteed a safe passage. In obtaining environments, it looks to be an improbability hence, refuge becomes his raison d’être”.
This makes him a hostage and a hostage is a pawn. He seems in great hurry to secure the nod by doing anything in lieu. This would make him a hostage. Being a dense head, he is more prone to exploitation. He could dance extra to their tunes. He has already started firing salvos unrelentingly on our first and last line of defence. In political terms, it is called Centre of Gravity. This is our defence forces which has blunted every move of our nemeses successfully by even undertaking mammoth tasks far beyond its designation selflessly in spirit of supreme sacrifice. They had to carry extra packs of almost all institutions including political leadership, fallen in black holes of all ills. Pakistan is back on its feet to regain its equilibrium after having seen off numerous horrendous challenges over more than a decade. This is not a mere view. This is a widely acknowledged fact. Driven by this fact, C Christine Fair, a distinguished American female political scientist and a well-known anti-Pakistan, was constrained to conclude that “for Pakistan state to collapse, it is basically Pakistan Army, which has to collapse, for better or worse, I do not see that happening”. Nothing better than this acknowledgement could have come from a hostile quarter rather, it is a resounding tribute to what our defence forces have done to defend Pakistan against multiplicity of formidable threats; terrorism, sectarianism, insurgency, mega urban crimes, escalation on borders and hybrid warfare. Amid these threats, a weak, corrupt and incapable leadership was also thrust upon under CoD for a decade. This has brought the country to knees constitutionally, institutionally, morally, economically and socially. The threat of hybrid war is an arduous and ongoing task. The rehabilitation of country multifariously is another urgent and vital task at hand. For its steady accomplishment, support of defence forces to civil govt is essential. It is a margin between success and failure. Given conditions, failure is no option.
Our nemeses want us to fail both. For achievement of their ulterior motive, our defence forces are their main objective. For their main assault against them, they have found Nawaz Sharif who has been our PM three time. This would lend credence to his diatribe/disclosures and give them a plethora of reasons to malign our defence forces according to their nefarious designs. It may be borne in mind that no country could allow its land for politics until it serves their interest particularly, by a man who is a convict, absconder of law and involved in money laundering, presently a heinous crime. Besides above cited security implications, this also has other fallouts. Our soldiers fight against enemy as made of steel but as a human, they are also made of flesh. They also have emotions. Such a smear campaign also impacts people psychologically therefore, it is an important ingredient of fifth generation warfare. Our Constitution prohibits slur against judiciary and defence forces. It is not a mere ritual. It has reason and precisely these are the reasons. A series of such slanderous tirades by a convict/fugitive have far more serious connotations morally and socially for the society. In some countries, convicted criminals are debarred from voting in elections. Here, he is championing the cause of democracy which he never did when in power courtesy same system. This is a mockery. The government must do all to deny him and his associates/allies opportunities to play games at expense of the country to serve their vested interests.
— The writer, a retired Lt Col, is freelance columnist based in Islamabad.