Monday, March 15, 2010

LOL. How to stop violence in Pakistan.

So on Five Rupees Blog there was a post on the new and true metrics of success in this strange war (a terrorist campaign disguised as an insurgency) we're fighting in Pakistan.

So I left a response to Mr Ahsan's post. Sorry if it sounds arrogant. Or cynical. We've all seen a lot in Pakistan.

Here's what I wrote:

I'll clarify with Ahsan on this. Look Ahsan, stopping the attacks on Pakistani citizens by fanatics will be a problem. It's always been a problem because going back till even 1977 (the Nizam-e-Mustapha days) and if you want to go back to the first ever Martial Law declared in Pakistan in 1953 over the Lahore Anti-Ahmedi riots, Pakistani society is configured to produce religiously fanatical, socially unstable people in life threatening quantities.

Let me repeat that: Pakistani Society, in conjunction with the Pakistani state, are hard wired to produce a set number of religious fanatics every year. It hasn't reached state threatening quantities (although with the pattern of jobless Madrassa graduates openning their own Madrassas, maybe this will change and things will get more "interesting").

But any way, we can refer back to that documentary you linked to with Mosharraf Zaidi in it in which a US based Pakistani woman said that the Government education system is the largest Madrassa system of all. Then there's the ubiquity of religious propaganda in our society. There's also the situation where religious fanaticism intersects with social justice or class conflict like it did in Swat, or does so in Jhang. Preventing the murder of Pakistani citizens goes beyond the security forces. They need good intel of course amongst the areas known for harbouring religious nut jobs, but local police every where needs to be reformed into police forces, as opposed to the current day mob control agencies they are; as well as telling the security forces to stop stashing or recruiting fanatics amongst the general population or any where outside North Waziristan (which by the way, anybody notice, we've totally ceded to the Afghan Taliban AND US air power to duke it out).

I would also like to remind Ahsan, that our security institutions have no real regard for the lives of Pakistani's outside their own ranks (and sometimes extending this disregard to their own rank and file), thus could not give a tinkers damn if any non-officer is killed in pursuit of their "strategic" agenda/s.

Lastly, I also will have to remind Ahsan (sorry, using that phrase too often) there were at minimum three breakouts of violence in the wake of our last "triumph" (Pyrrhus anyone?) in Afghanistan, which were resolved by the actions of democratic governments:

1) The outbreak of violence in Karachi and Urban Sindh.
Resolved by Military Action instigated by both the PPP and PML-N.

2) The outbreak of Sectarian assassinations in Urban Pakistan.
Resolved by a program of assassinating Sectarian militants instigated by the PML-N

3) The outbreak of the Afghan Civil War at the fall of the Soviet Afghan Regime.
Resolved by the PPP by sponsoring the rise and consolidation of the Taliban regime.

You will have noticed that I added how each episode was resolved.

And I added a plug for democratic governments cause it was THE mainstream parties which put the political pedal to the metal to finish of these conflicts.

The point being (and maybe one that Ahsan touched on but didn't fully continue on when he mentioned our military establishment) is that our vaunted security agencies do not have the political will, sense, vision or imagination to resolve an evolving closure to the Afghan imbroglio, that would give Pakistan both a modicum of peace and some sort of worthwhile strategic prize, or a gain, or at least not a total sense of Pyrrhic victory.

For that, our political parties will have to present some sort of vision or idea on Afghanistan, more evolved than what the generals are capable of articulating.

So yeah.

1) Pakistan needs to stop producing fanatics.

2) Then Pakistan has to prepare to confront various militants.

3) Pakistan's political parties need to lead on this

4) Pakistan's PPP and PML-N need to present a co-operative combined vision of a peaceful post-conflict Afghanistan.

I think I'll go to sleep.

How to stop violence in Pakistan. LOL.


anoop said...

Its a good start.. But, systemic changes are needed too.. Like, I donno, Demo-fucking-cracy? Democracy, I am sorry, minus Civilian supremacy is just not Democracy.. But, good start nonetheless..

tlw said...

Yo Anoop; seen you around.

So you mentioned Civilian Supremacy. Hmmmm.....wait for it.......wait for it......HAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHA

I was like huh at demo-fucking-cracy, and I literally smiled when you said civilian supremacy.

Not happening in the next 20 years. Forget about it till we have kids of our own going to university (unless you already have kids of your own going to university).

And when you say systemic changes, the word Pakistani's always add in their minds is "Long Term". This has to be a stated long term objective, and I think it'll take positive re-enforcement from without, and internal pressure from within. A lot of country's have huge military sectors. Maybe if we grow the capitalist sector larger than the military one it'll force it's will on it.

But yeah, thanx for taking the time to read it all. My personal bugbear in politics is the lies, distortions and half truths they teach in Pakistani history. The electronic med-yeah has helped push them away. What's your pet political thing?

And yeah - hows the effect on the capitalist sector on the electronic media in India? Interested cause people on our side of the Radcliffe Line are also inadvertent consumers.

Rabia said...

this is a great post and I agreed with your comments on Rs. 5. I guess it's one of the things I will never see eye to eye with them about - I mean the idea that the military establishment recognizes these 'normal' goals (ending violence, ending terrorism, wanting peace) let alone is taking steps to achieve them is just impossible to believe.

Georg said...

As far as I can see it, the main cause for all the trouble, killings and fanaticism is religion. Try to get some fresh air into all those clogged heads.

Religion should be an absolute private matter, like any other hobby people pursue who have too much time to spend.