Last Friday the latest high-level talks on breaking a five-month diplomatic impasse between Pakistan and the USA collapsed over American refusal to Pakistani demands for an unconditional apology from the Obama administration for an airstrike, which killed 24 Pakistani soldiers on the Afghanistan border last November.
Without the apology, Pakistani government may not reopen NATO supply routes into Afghanistan that have been closed since November. The Americans, in turn, are withholding nearly a billion dollar of promised military aid.
In three weeks the Obama administration is hosting a NATO meeting in Chicago. The event is cast as a regional security summit to discuss matters relating to the entire region including Pakistan and Afghanistan. The bilateral relationship between Pakistan and the USA has been quite tense since the release of a CIA operative who was involved in shooting in January of last year.
Then came the assassination of Osama bin Laden inside a compound in Abbotabad in which Pakistan’s sovereignty was violated by the US commando unit. And then there are the drone attacks inside tribal areas of Pakistan which has killed more civilians that those suspected of ties with the Taliban and al-Qaeda. The public mood inside Pakistan and the election year politics inside the USA may not allow either party relenting under pressure. Under the circumstances, it is highly unlikely that Pakistan will attend the Chicago event. And that means prospect for a Taliban peace process is nil.
American ego and arrogance to confess that “it is sorry” is at the heart of this diplomatic stalemate between the two countries.
Remember all the hysteria about Iran’s nonexistent weapons program? Last month India successfully tested a powerful new missile that can carry nuclear weapons far enough to hit Beijing. But where is the outrage? Instead of condemning such provocative acts the USA and her allies said that the launch should not be seen as a threat because India has a no-first-use policy and its missiles were used only for deterrence. Really? Yes, in these days when war is sold as peace, and occupation as liberation, we better learn to accept the new cliché – provocation is deterrence! Otherwise, how could these countries trade nuclear materials with India, in violation of the very letter and spirit of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), since 2008?
Contrast this criminal, illegal and hypocritical attitude with Iran. Iran, a signatory of the NPT, has demonstrated time and again that she has no intent to develop nuclear weapon. Her leaders, including the supreme leader Khamenie, explicitly said Iran doesn’t want nuclear weapons and that their use would be “sinful.” He issued a fatwa on the matter.
Even the U.S. intelligence community concur that Iran is not developing nuclear weapons. None of this stopped Israel and her western allies including the USA, however, from putting a lid on all those tough talks about further crippling sanctions and attacking Iran. And worse still, no one on the world stage dared to suggest that Iran’s posture for nuclear technology was for deterrence.
Obviously, it is the nuclear Brahmins and bullies – the U.S.A. and her western allies – that make the rules in this age of Kali about what is legal and what is not. They behave like that hideous and arrogant tiger of the children’s story book that is determined to kill the charming, peaceful deer one way or another. (The rule of the jungle was that deer won’t drink upstream so that tiger would have the privilege of drinking unpolluted water. However, even when the deer drank water far downstream of the river the tiger accused it of dirtying the drinking water before killing it.)
Iran is now viewed much like that story-book deer by these arrogant tigers of our time. So hooked up are these warmongers that they have no qualms about disregarding what their own intelligent agencies have been telling them!
Another case in point is the recent revelation from Israel. Yuval Diskin, the former head of Israel's Shin Bet security agency has accused the country's political leaders of exaggerating the effectiveness of a possible military strike against Iran, in a striking indication of Israel's turmoil over how to deal with the Iranian nuclear program. He said Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak – who have been saber-rattling for months – have their judgment clouded by "messianic feelings" and should not be trusted to lead policy on Iran.
Diskin is not alone inside Israel challenging claims made by warmongers inside Israel (and the USA, UK and France). A few days ago Israel's current top military commander, Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz, also seemed to disagree with the country's leadership on the likelihood that Iran will pursue a nuclear weapon.
Last summer Israel's recently retired spy chief Meir Dagan called a military strike against Iran's nuclear program "stupid." Dan Halutz, who led the military from 2005 to 2007, also criticized Netanyahu last month for invoking Holocaust imagery in describing the threat posed by a nuclear-armed Iran. "We are not kings of the world," Halutz said. "We should remember who we are." A recent survey, conducted by the Israeli Dahaf agency for the University of Maryland, suggested the public agrees.
But would any survey result make the difference for an arrogant tiger to modify its attitude?