Pakistan, America and terrorism | By Rizwan Ghani

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Pakistan, America and terrorism

WITHOUT exposing India’s use of terrorism against Pakistan and testing America’s good cop bad cop policy against Pakistan, Islamabad cannot secure its policies.

Foreign Investment promotion and protection may be needed but history of East India company and failure of West’s economic model (crony capitalism, supply chains, tax cuts and privatization)and trade war in Ukraine shows new approach is needed on economy, foreign policy and national unity.

Blinken’s offer of ‘resolute’ US support to Pakistan to counter terror was followed byBilawal’s denial of signing any security deal with America. FM wants to see Pakistan as energy hub in the region.

Pakistan would prefer comprehensive agreement with America to secure its strategic independence because history shows last Pak-US security deal was counterproductive. It was outsourcing of US war which cost Pakistan 80,000 lives and $125bn.

The test of Washington’s offer is to end India’s presence in Afghanistan to free Pakistan’s western border, end use of terrorism to stop bleeding its economy since 2001 and start Asia-ME trade in the region.

West has given India Northeast India development project ($47bn), Tata-Airbus aircraft project, Vedanta-Foxconn project, Bulk Drug Park and Apple factory.

India is given visas and jobs in West and ME at the cost of Pakistan. Delhi gets $89bn from Gulf remittances.

India was given UN presidency despite violation of UN Kashmir Resolutions. Now West is lobbying for India’s permanent seat in UNSC.

This all merits to be reversed. Pakistan can defeat terrorism in targeted areas by using demonetization, regional security and technical cooperation, locally manufactured mobiles, identity authentication software, digital currency, and electronic fencing.

As part of regional policy, India should be removed from Russia-Iran North-South route following its access to Siberia route.

After questioning India’s Indo-Pacific policy against the region, Putin is likely to review India’s presence in Russia and Arctic.

China is also expected to balance its funding for Russia’s Vostok Project in the Arctic considering Russia’s geo-strategic curtailment of India with Tibet pipeline in hand.

If Putin wants to secure Russia’s energy hub in Central Asian States, he will have to remove Indian military bases also. Otherwise, he will be facing Ukraine-2 and NATO 2 in Asia.

Delhi will do in Asia for West what Kiev is doing for it in Europe. That is why West is supporting Modi. The ball now lies in Xi and Putin’s court on India and Afghanistan.

Islamabad should talk to Iran to secure its energy needs in the region. Pakistan should open and expand trade with Iran, Afghanistan, Gulf and CARS.

Islamabad can offer land access to India-Iran gas pipeline for Western India which will be more economical than Arabian Sea route.

The use of digital currency, trading in local currency and repegging local currencies to gold will help boost regional trade, revenue and jobs while cutting trade deficits, inflation, need for foreign currency reserves, taking central bank control and ending IMF program.

West’s political economy is destroying democracy and fuelling populism in parliamentary or presidential democracies.

By enacting Jan 6, Trump has exported populism to rest of the world (US National Strategy for Countering Domestic Terrorism June 2020).

Jan 6 Committee Report shows that Trump criminally plotted to overturn his 2020 election defeat and “provoked his supporters to violence” at the Capitol with false voter fraud claims (22 Dec 2022, the Guardian). To protect democracy, powers of presidents and PMs should be cut by 70%.

The Moore v.Harper case is in US Supreme Court. It shows how lawmakers changed laws to win 10 out of 13 seats by redrawing districts (gerrymandering) for having more seats even if Democrats win more votes.

Trump won elections despite Hilary getting 6M more votes. (The case should never have made it to the SC, 9 Dec 2022, the New York Times). In UK, the system is already well established.

Conservative need just 30% votes to win seats as compared to Labour, Lib Dems and Greens.

The case shows that GoP lawmakers did gerrymandering to create safe seats like UK Conservatives so that and after coming to power Republicans remain in power.

That is why legal experts are concerned that probably 2020 was the last US election. Republicans refuse to honour constitution to avoid check and balance.

Although Trump Backtracked on Calling For ‘Termination’ Of Constitution Following Backlash after his post of social media (5 Dec 2022, Forbes).

Pakistan should ask America to protect (its)democracy from populism and respect its Constitution which originally envisaged collection of revenues from trade instead of imposing tariffs turning WTO, WB, IMF, FATF and UN into sanctioning tools denying member states their legitimate trading rights.

The failing economies and strikes in UK, US and Europe are its fallouts. Pakistan’s economy is suffering.UK borrowed £22bn in November 2022 alone and its public debt has crossed £2.24T.

Obama, Trump and Biden have added $21T to total $31TUS debt. World is suffering due to high cost of living, but Biden is continuing with sanctions and failing to stop Ukraine war which is abdication of America’s global standing.

—The writer is senior political analyst based in Islamabad.