At the end of the day it is the fiscal side of things that govern most global matters and none more so than the issues between Pakistan and USA – The airstrikes on Saturday imply that the Pak-US bond is fast approaching its breaking point. The recurring breach of Pakistan’s sovereignty has had temperatures soaring in the country and the military is under escalating pressure to terminate its cooperation with US; especially after ,what has been, an unceremonious year for the relationship. The unprovoked act of innocent killings has brought about unparalleled rage against the US/NATO machine.
2011 has been tumultuous year as far as US and Pakistan’s enigmatic bond is concerned. The oft-touted military allies, combating the war against terror have witnessed an exchange of mistrust, skepticism and anger. The Raymond Davis affair set the ball rolling earlier in the year, and rewrote the term ‘diplomacy’ for the Average Joe in our part of the world. Then the US breached every law in inter-dominion codes and ethics and penetrated into Abbottabad, where they found Osama Bin Laden and then disposed him off.
Pakistan-US bond has been like that marriage, where both the concerned parties have grown sick of each other’s antics, their expectations soar and the reciprocation is not up to the mark, have at one time or the other tried to woo other partners and have even cheated on each other. But now owing to recent events with the sword of divorce hanging over the relationship; is breakup a viable solution for either party? The two countries and their altercations are the political illustration of U2’s chartbuster “with or without you”; they can’t seem to be able to live with each other, but they sure as hell can’t live without each other.
At the end of the day it is the fiscal side of things that govern most global matters and none more so than the issues between Pakistan and USA. With Pakistan reliant on Western aid for its own sustenance, it cannot stretch out the situation beyond repair. If the political ties completely go kaput, it is detrimental to Pakistan’s future in the long run; especially in the present scenario where we are shrouded by the menace of susceptibility. US on the other hand, might be playing the domineering husband to Pakistan’s dependant wife, but with its war going haywire in Pakistan’s western vicinity, Washington is as reliant on Islamabad – even if not in the same obviously hypersensitive way.
US needs the NATO supply routes to be kept open for its troops in Afghanistan; and in an apt riposte to NATO’s attack on Saturday, this is exactly what we have targeted. US also needs Pakistan to keep a check on Al-Qaeda and Taliban’s expansion. They can point fingers, they can impugn us, but they just cannot do without us. And hence if the US fails to recognise our contributions and continues to breach our sovereignty for its self-seeking purposes we could refuse to play ball.
However, there is only so much that we can do, owing to their monetary stranglehold. Granted that when juxtaposed with American disbursements in Iraq and Afghanistan, its aid to Pakistan is significantly small, the way international dynamics work we cannot afford a complete breakdown in ties. As things stand an average American does not look upon Pakistan as an ally, and the average Pakistani does not look upon US as a friend; but nonetheless the two countries need each other. We’ll show our displeasure for some time but eventually we would be back on the negotiation table. We can expound our anger against the status quo, and our rage against the machine but we can’t do without the US. Not yet anyway.
The writer is Sub-Editor, Profit. He can be reached at [email protected]