US defense secretary Leon Panetta has thundered that he would not let Pakistan ‘gouge’ the United States on the price it charges for overland American military supplies to Afghanistan. But who in Pakistan went begging to Washington to use its overland supply routes? They are welcome to keep using the northern distribution network for supplies. The people in Pakistan are least concerned. It indeed is the American movers and shakers who themselves are twisting the arm of Islamabad top guns to restore these suspended supply routes. But isn’t it the Americans who in fact have been gouging Pakistan over the price for the last eleven years?
FREE PAKISTAN LUNCH IS OVER, MR. PANETTA!
Frontier Post Editorial
US defense secretary Leon Panetta has thundered that he would not let Pakistan ‘gouge’ the United States on the price it charges for overland American military supplies to Afghanistan.
But who in Pakistan went begging to Washington to use its overland supply routes?
They are welcome to keep using the northern distribution network for supplies. The people in Pakistan are least concerned. It indeed is the American movers and shakers who themselves are twisting the arm of Islamabad top guns to restore these suspended supply routes.
But isn’t it the Americans who in fact have been gouging Pakistan over the price for the last eleven years?
Have they not been using Pakistan routes for a pittance?
Say No to Blatant Terrorism in Sovereign States
Every day, hundreds of their supply containers and trucks were plying on these overland routes without paying even a penny in toll tax and other levies that the natives themselves have to pay every day?
These massive US savings indeed cost the cash-strapped public exchequer of Pakistan neatly billions of dollars. And yet the Americans are ungrateful.
They make so much of the puny sums they have delivered to Pakistan over long breaks and that too mostly in reimbursement for what Pakistan has spent from its own pocket on fighting their spurious war on terror.
But slyly they keep mum over this transit facility they have been getting for years almost for free. Even now, what Pakistan has been demanding is far, far less than what they have to shell out on the northern distribution network. According to their own contention, that route is costing them additionally some $38 million every month.
Perhaps, time has come for grandees like Panetta in Washington to understand that their era of free lunch in Pakistan is over. So much have they vilified and demonized Pakistan all through the years, despite extracting every pound of flesh from it for almost nothing, that even our shameless rulers have taken some shame and have begun refusing to be bullied and blackmailed by their American buddies.
Now it has to be a purely transactional deal, and it is for the Americans to take it or leave it. For a long time Islamabad has obediently, rather slavishly, played ball with them. It cannot do it anymore. The public pressure is too severe and too strong.
THE FAKE VACCINE DOCTOR
Panetta and the Panjandrums of his ilk in Washington are well advised not to make an issue, as they are, of the sentencing of Pakistani doctor Shakil Afridi who helped their CIA by launching a fake immunization campaign. They stand on a very slippery ground on this.
Would they have awarded the Purple Heart to an American citizen found working for a foreign intelligence in the United States? Did they so decorate Jonathan Pollard who spied for Israel? Wasn’t he jailed for life?
Aren’t they subjecting to a tormenting grill their serviceman Bradley Manning for leaking classified diplomatic cables to the whistle-blowing site WikiLeaks?
And just to please the Indians, haven’t they thrown behind bars for two years Kashmiri-American Dr. Ghulam Nabi Fai, even as he was indulging in no hostile activity against the United State? He was only campaigning, openly, for the legitimate right of self-determination of the Kashmiris, who are brutalized at the hands of a trigger-happy Indian Army that is suppressing their indigenous uprising for freedom in Indian-occupied Kashmir? And this is a UN-mandated right, to which the United States too is a signatory. Yet they charged Dr. Fai for allegedly being on ISI’s payroll.
There indeed is too much foul to their act. It was in their own overriding hubris that they had leaked Dr. Shakil’s name as their CIA’s spy agent. But with that arrogance, they have jeopardized the lives of national and international health workers not just in Pakistan but worldwide and of the children and infants as well.
Not only the people all over would now look with suspicion at health workers out in the field on immunization campaigns but would even be loath and resistant to have their children inoculated. The foolishness of Panetta & Co. has played havoc with the lives and health of a lot of people, particularly children. Instead of defending the doctor, Panetta and CIA should repent for their sins.
As for Osama, their erstwhile CIA poster-boy of their jihad against the Soviet invaders of Afghanistan, they are yet to come clean on him.
Hadn’t they invaded Afghanistan, no less to dismantle al-Qaeda and capture Osama, dead or alive?
And yet they let him escape along with all his top lieutenants. Why no American general or military commander faced court martial for this colossal lapse? No American panjandrum has raised this question and no American panjandrum has ever cared to answer it.
Since Panetta now holds the defense portfolio, let him answer this question. The truth the world must be told.
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