Biden’s Pakistan visit
IMRAN Khan was trying to find a broader base for Pak-US relationship in his Q&A with New York Times, which is beyond Afghanistan. In my view, it is democracy. It can provide the foundation provided it is acceptable to both.
There is no change in the global economic system, financial institutions and political systems and the fight is for money not improving the public’s life.
It is test of Biden not Pakistan to stand with democracy. The roadmap of equal relationship given otherwise who does not know the history of America? To solve Afghan situation, Biden needs to visit Pakistan. It will help both countries to bring peace in the country and the region.
Democratically speaking, he needs to bring Doha Agreement before the joint house of US lawmakers for a unified Afghan policy because 75 million votes for Trump in 2020 presidential election is an endorsement of his foreign policy. Like Yemen, Imran should also bring his Afghan policy to Parliament after Parliamentary Committee for a win-win situation for all.
As our Afghan war ally, public expects US President to pay respect to 80,000 victims. Meet their family members to share their sufferings just like death of his wife and son. Stand with survivors to honour 150,000 people who suffered mental and physical disabilities.
Visit public whose majority is living below $2 a day and still its $150bn was spent on America’s safety in Afghan war. It is important so that world can see and acknowledge sacrifices of the people of Pakistan.
On FATF, Biden will have to end it. Money laundering involves two parties so FATF should submit its progress report on stopping party donations after US Capitol Hill storming.
Removal of ECB convicted head. Implementation of 2018 EU AML Panama Directive by the remaining 22 EU member states. Making public overseas homeownership registers of UK and France. Blacklisting of financial institutions involved in $6.7tn money laundering (Politico, Guardian).
On corruption, Pakistan wants Biden to order audit of $2tn US Afghan war expenditure to expose real enemies of American public
. The poor conditions in Afghanistan show that US funds have been stolen so it is his legal obligation to recover publics’ stolen tax money to fund US Infrastructure Development Programme.
It will set a precedent to end forever wars to hide corruption, money laundering and tax evasion. He should enforce US laws to end Afghan drug trade to end addiction in the region, Americas and Europe.
On human rights, Biden will have to stand with Kashmir, Palestine, Myanmar just like America’s support for their violations in other parts of the world.
He should end gross violation of rights of immigrants, refugees and indigenous people in advanced world.
Public is also losing faith in democracy due to police abuses, corrupt judiciary and attacks on media. There can be no democratic progress unless there is uniform yardstick in all these areas at individual, state and global levels.
On the economy, Pakistan has survived sanctions in the past. It can do it again by transforming villages into independent economic zones with the help of value addition (SME) in future also.
It can thrive and prosper independently by improving the US Homestead law, China’s poverty alleviation programme, and domestic consumption based economy.
The availability of renewable energy, IT and saving based banking model will make it easier to brave sanctions. On international front, America has to respect democracy to compete in multipolar world.
The rejection of Merkel-Macron EU-Putin Summit proposal is a setback for Biden’s “America Is Back” policy to use united Europe to prop up Putin against China.
The critics have rejected the idea as naïve and US Sen Graham Putin will not change his habits.
Poland and Baltic countries opposed the move despite Macron’s push for dialogue to defend EU interests.
It has divided Europe on its East-West relations. It is unsure of long-term US commitment to internationalism and democracy due to populism, extremism and attack on the Capitol.
Many Europeans think that Biden’s declaration of multilateralism and his government’s emphasis on the importance of alliances, human rights and democracy may be a blip in the US foreign policy which can be replaced by ‘America first’ president with different goals in future.
Quad undermines America’s democracy. Washington is pushing China and India to war in exchange for supporting India for Kashmir takeover and human rights violations. It is the case with Pakistan, India and Afghanistan. India has to leave Afghanistan. There will be no AF-Pak land route under Pakistan first.
Islamabad will support US and other NATO countries to pull out only. Vietnam, Iraq, Syria, Libya and Afghanistan (USSR & USA) have shown that war is not a solution.Pakistan will end economic colonization in the region and stand on its own.
It will develop its own resources to earn revenue but it cannot allow control of its resources for having good relations.
No one can touch the nuclear programme of Pakistan because it is property of the people and they defend it.
Public wants permanent relations with those countries having true democracy and rule of law. Now it is up to Biden and other world leaders to visit Pakistan or not.
—The writer is senior political analyst based in Islamabad.