“We snatched anarchy from the jaws of defeat”
– Henry Kissinger
Historians tracing the origins of the short but terrible Indo-Punjabistani nuclear exchange of 2024 over the issue of Kashmiri independence generally look to the rapid disintegration of Pakistan into secession, civil war and democide a decade earlier during the conclusion of the “American war” in Afghanistan.
Pakistan had officially been touted as a steadfast ally of the United States during nine years of an American-led campaign against the Taliban insurgency and its al Qaida partners in Afghanistan and Pakistan’s tribal territories, with successive administrations overlooking strong evidence of Pakistani collusion with Taliban leaders. This changed in 2012 when mounting war-weariness at home and an impending presidential election forced President Barack Obama to take more aggressive action to bring the war in Afghanistan to something resembling a “victory”. On September 1st, US forces in Afghanistan under General David Petraeus launched “Operation Iron Emir”, a devastating combined arms “raid” into Pakistan’s tribal territories that routed the Taliban rear areas, effectively annihilated the Haqqani Network, incuding its commander, Sirajuddin Haqqani, along with Hizb-i-Islami, and its notoriously cruel leader, Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, pictures of whose head, decapitated in a 500 lb bomb blast, were splashed across the front page of The New York Times.
While nominally carried out with the consent of Pakistan’s government, Operation Iron Emir sparked widespread riots in Pakistan and the Second Burning of the US Embassy, while critics at home and abroad compared Obama’s action with Nixon’s invasion of Cambodia. Criticism became muted when a ” Poison Dart”, the new robotic microdrone, blew-up Dr. Ayman Zawahiri, the elusive number two leader of al Qaida and three senior leaders of the Quetta Shura in a caravan of SUV’s observed leaving Islamabad, exposing Pakistan’s sponsorship of the Taliban and bringing U.S.-Pakistani relations to a crisis stage. At this time, Pakistan’s civilian President Asif Ali Zardari was toppled and subsequently executed by Pakistan’s military chief General Kayani, who ruled for a few weeks before being ousted in turn by his close ally, Lieutenant General Ahmad Shuja Pasha, head of Pakistan’s powerful ISI. Pasha enlisted figures from radical Islamist parties to broaden a cabinet that was essentially a shaky “ISI junta”, featuring the colorful anti-American, Hamid Gul as foreign minister. The new government broke off relations with the United States, but in turning swiftly to bloodily purge its own internal enemies, including approximately 600,000 members of Pakistan’s Shiite minority, the Pasha regime inadvertantly set Pakistan on course to become, in the words of UN Sceretary General Ban Ki-moon, “A Muslim Yugoslavia”….
The United States faces a strategic conundrum in Afghanistan in that it is primarily fighting the Taliban, a proxy of a third party (Pakistan), in order to apply pressure to a small network of Islamist “global insurgents”, (al Qaida), who are mainly hiding inside Pakistan, not in Afghanistan. The U.S. government considers – or pretends to do so for public consumption – that Pakistan an “ally”.
In these circumstances, if the United States inflicts serious damage on the Taliban – be it through COIN or conventional tactics – will our relations with Pakistan get better or worse?
The postmodern American elite has a great deal of difficulty recognizing, much less forthrightly acknowledging, who America’s enemies are in an inverse relationship to their power to harm our interests. The Victorians had a good word for that state of mind:
3 thoughts on “Afghanistan 2050: “A Muslim Yugoslavia””
The very thought of your quaking-kneed President Obama actually ordering an assault upon his Muslim mates is almost as hilarious as his ‘defence’ of the proposed ‘9/11 Mosque’ sited some two blocks from Ground Zero!
You might hold to ‘religious tolerance’ in the USA, which is fine; but I thought you hadn’t relinquished a sense of proportion as well!
Too quote a friend of mine:
The principal product, and principal export, of Pakistan is woe. This will be repaid many times over.
Once a “Nuke Of Pakistani Origin” goes off someplace else, America will act, assuming the victim doesn’t beat us to it.
The key point here is India will have the will to act, before it has the capability, and possibly before that “Nuke Of Pakistani Origin” detonates. India is the principal target of Pakistani terrorist madness because of geography.
Between the time of India having the will and having the nuclear capability, the Indian Hindu Nationalist BJP party will drive scores of millions of Indian Muslims into Pakistan. Where they will be locked up in relocation camps funded by the Euros and run by the ISI as bases for terrorism against India and elsewhere.
The Pakistani nationalists will actually welcome this as a backstop to their power and legitimacy.
The problem for Pakistan is that it just too vulnerable to nuclear attack – it relies entirely on a few ports and airfields. Nuke those and the place simply does not have the stocks of medicine, fuel, food and vehicle spare parts to avoid massive starvation and related epidemics before replacement ingress of fuel, food, spares & whatnot is possible. (Plus Pakistan will have no friends at that point. Possible sources of aid will act only based on national interest, A’La China and North Korea.)
The current Punjabi flooding is making that logistical fact about Pakistan very clear. As does the recent strategypage.com report of the infrastructure collapse of British Raj built rail system in Pakistani territory.
And, once post-nuclear attack famine & epidemics start, there simply isn’t the Pakistani social cohesion/social capital to avoid anarchy. At which point the Pakistani army will fold, assuming it hasn’t already been nuked, and Pakistan’s population will quickly tube to Somali style subsistence levels.
The only significant difference, within Pakistan, between a moderate nuclear attack limited to Pakistani ports/airfields, and a massive one aimed at civil infrastructure & its armed forces, will likely be how fast the place falls apart.
Which would certainly be important to anyone within range of Pakistani nuclear delivery capability, but not those out of range.
Probably the reason they’ll be our “biggest allies” is because they’ll be totally dependent on our military aid and in debt up to their a.sses to the World Bank. Now THOSE are kind of “allies” I want!
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