Texting with the enemy

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The precarious scenario in Afghanistan, the injustice with the daughter of the nation (not the newspaper) Aafia Siddiqui, CIA agents in Pakistan, Rana Sanaullah and Facebook are threats to world peace. The situation requires the attention of the world’s top brains. This scribe is one of them.

American President Barack Obama must stop killing his fellow Muslim brothers. The people of Pakistan are demanding under the leadership of Imran Khan and religious parties, who are demanding under the leadership of other authorities, a total pullout from Afghanistan to allow Pakistan to independently play a role in the stability of Afghanistan. “So that 20 years later they can again use it as an excuse for supporting terrorism?” one critic asked. This scribe put down the phone after hearing that. Such tirade against the military is a result of a planned conspiracy. Also, this scribe fears certain sensitive agencies might be listening. They are very sensitive on this issue.

American plans to negotiate with Taliban leaders before a pullout are a welcome step. This scribe would advise that these negotiations would be most effective if carried out through text messages. In that way they will be cheap and personal, and both sides will be able to say a lot of things that they cannot say face to face.

“A/S/L”

“39/only with wives/cave. who dis?”

“obama”

“bin laden?”

“omg no idiot. american prezzy”

“watevzzz”

“no srsly”

“k snd me a pic”

At such occasions, however, this scribe urges leaders on both sides to resist the temptation to send pictures of teenaged girls. Negotiations cannot succeed without trust. Building trust at a personal level will allow the American president to change the course of history. However, other more sure-shot ways of changing history should also be employed, such as making changes to Wikipedia.

There is an increasing realisation in the United States that this war is unwinnable. “Negotiating with a diverse group of enemies with varying stakes is like playing the board game Monopoly,” one expert says. “Nobody wins. The only possible outcome is a physical fight.”

However, the US economy is not in a very good shape and it cannot afford a war. After receiving intelligence reports about Al Qaeda’s plans to hurt the US economy, former president George Bush had to launch a preemptive strike against his country’s economy. If fighting is inevitable, however, the cheapest, most modern and most effective way to fight is through text messaging.

“dats it btwn us. u dnt let me go down south“

“Srsly ur gttng annoying”

“Thnx fr the emrld mine! GSY lolzzzz”

Critics of new media question text messages as an effective way of communication because a limited number of characters can restrict expression. During fighting and ensuing negotiations, this feature is actually a strength of this medium.

“y u ignorng me? u wth HER???”

This technique can be employed to elicit a response that can include valuable intelligence data on the location of high value targets, as has been tried and tested by girlfriends and wives.

However, leaders of the world must be aware that like all technology, text messages can cause immense damage if not used carefully. For example, it is of utmost importance that messages like: “omg petraeus is being annoyng” are not accidentally sent to Gen David Petraeus himself.

In the end, this scribe will urge American and Taliban leaders not to bypass Pakistan in their negotiations. Pakistan is an important country with a very significant geo-strategic location and great infrastructure to support text message talks. Although food inflation is at its peak in the country’s history, mobile phone connections are free.

 

The writer is a media critic and the News Editor, The Friday Times. He may be contacted at [email protected]

 

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