Thursday, 19 December 2013

Two Hundred Dollar Man

Published Dawn 18/12/2013

This is in response to Mr Irfan Hussain's Column “A CIA agent’s take on drones” (14/12/2013).

I am not sure what Mr Hussain was trying to achieve through building an argument around someone i.e. the CIA agent in Pakistan who is busy selling blood of his own people for mere $200 a month. The points put across by the agent didn’t seem anything more than a traitor justifying his jobs-worth. What should one expect from someone selling the motherland for $200? If it is our war then what’s the justification of CIA agents operating
from our soil providing intelligence to the US? It gives strength to the notion that the American CIA is waging a secret war on our soil through its network of spies.Mr Hussain's central character then in his excitement goes further saying the following:

"...From a military standpoint, it’s a success for the United States. And I contribute to that success."

Does it not tell whose war we have tangled ourselves into?

Rubbishing the innocent death toll including that of women and children by the agent and later on admitting the same didn’t make sense. Regardless of numbers, isn’t loss of one innocent life, one too many? Besides, it’s not just one person but a whole affected family or clan that is more likely to be sucked into a blood feud with the state. I leave it to Mr Hussain to do the maths.

About the misconception that none of Pakistan’s laws apply to FATA. Perhaps the writer ignored the fact that it is the government of Pakistan that is still governing FATA through colonial set of laws brought in by the British in 1901 to counter Pakhtun opposition to their rule and unfortunately little has been done since then to integrate FATA into Pakistan, for the same reason i.e. to protect the ruling elite’s interests. Not integrating and extending the writ of the State to FATA is not due to the situation but due to the administrative arrangements of the state of Pakistan. It is also against the will of people of FATA. Read FATA declaration published 25/06/2013 in various papers. There is practically no writ of the government in Lyari and various other parts of the country, what shall we do? Drone the areas?

The US AID $20 billion in 12 years that includes $10 Billion of CSF represents a mere 0.3% of our GDP and peanuts when compared to the loss of $100 billion due to this pointless war. Contextually, Mr Haggle’s warning may be a blessing in disguise for Pakistan, as for once we may learn to live without cap in hand. Besides, if it is a price tag for our blood and sovereignty, then we are better off without it.

Published Daily Dawn (18/12/2013) 
News article link to the rejoinder "Drone Attacks" 

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