By A Khokar 02 May 2010
After 9/11 Musharraf is known to have taken a unique ‘U turn’ in respect of age old Pakistani policy about Taliban in Afghanistan. This act of his even today has not sat well in the people’s minds that whether, under the circumstances Musharraf did so, in the best interests of Pakistan or otherwise. In his recent communiqué; put on the facebook— ‘From the Desk of Pervez Musharraf – Handling Events posts 9/11’,—- while describing the incident gives out the plea that as per the National Security assessment at the time, he had the reason to believe that US in collaboration with India were all out to attack Afghanistan to occupy it; using the only available South Eastern corridor of Pakistan to them. Both the enemy forces had sought to run over Pakistan in swift surgical strike operations and go occupy Afghanistan. Musharraf says that after a thorough deliberation this was decided that in the face of eminent threat rather than being run over and subjugated at the hands of far superior forces; it was better to come forward and to act as US ally in ‘US War Against Terror’, —-save the day and not be eliminated altogether.
Whereas the known presences of Taliban and Al Qaeda sanctuaries on Pakistani territory in Northern Tribal area was a heated pretext, enabling US forces to invade Pakistan and fight the Taliban and Al Qaeda out. This has been the bone of contention and a menace that Pakistan’s security, all along has remained at stake. No doubt that Musharraf had a vision and his convictions to fight and evict the evil of Taliban which was seen spreading through these sanctuaries in this country. But somehow the man did not consider it necessary to take the nation in confidence. He has been secretly dealing with its stake holders; fighting as a lone ranger while nation remained aloof and thus was unable to turn the public opinion in his favour.
Good ten years have since passed. Musharraf stepped down and handed over the government to new democratic regime. But this dilemma as how to deal with the menace of Taliban and their sanctuaries still persists. The savagery through subversion emanating from their dens in shape of Tehrik e Taliban (TTP) has brought havoc in the society and this nation is at the brink of Collapse. This nation has also failed to decide unanimously that how best this evil can be eliminated in the best interest of Pakistan.
Today although, of late—— Pak Armed Forces have started carrying out a cleansing operation in the affected area and this could be said that this nation as well as its army is reaching up to that same very vision of Musharraf to evict and eliminate TTP as spelled out by him some 9 years back and it was not visualised by public then.
But unfortunately that may not be the case. In NWFP, Pervez Musharraf unduly extended his favour toward Fazlur Rehamns to keep NWFP in his fold and have his seat of power safe n secure. This dubious act adversely resulted into an utter chaos in NWFP that Fazlur Rehman group finding it a free hand and in order to fulfil their own vicious designs— freely let Tehrik e Taliban and other anti Pakistan elements to breed in NWFP province, that lately people were stunt to witness that how havoc situations they were to put up with in northern areas; especially in Swaat and Malakand.
Where as a Military man was standing up to other challenges as US allay and busy building the national image; Fazlu Rehman was found dismantling all his best efforts altogether. This was a major folly on the part of Pervez Musharraf and it has earned him a contempt and a discredit. He knowingly kept his eyes shut toward Fazlur—- and today—- we find that TTP has turned into a monster and nation is stuck with it.
Musharraf is of course a known visionary that Pakistan needs today and he is certainly an asset for this nation. The man brought some ground breaking marvels and changes in our society which he could only achieve while in power as a single military man in command and a dedicated military force at his back. But it may require a great deal to build a real potent successful nation. The polity in Pakistan is influenced by deep nit feudalistic mafia and may take some decades to eradicate the evil from our society.
One may not envisage that same like situation and his powerful post that he once enjoyed in Pakistan will be available to him again. He has not been a clever dictator also. There is lot at stake and he may not win the support of people to come atop to lead this nation as a politician in Pakistan in near future. This is a humble suggestion to the Maestro that—the best and well suited position for him would be to act as a great thinker, visionary as he is and must create a ‘Think Tank and a Forum’ of his own— in order to keep this nation mobilized in the fields of Pakistani nationalism and set this nation onto the right road of enlightenment by which he may also keep the media and the governments on toes.
With the Best of Regards