“You can’t keep snakes in your backyard and expect them only to bite your neighbors. You know, eventually those snakes are going to turn on whoever has them in the backyard,” former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton bluntly said to Pakistan in presence of the country’s foreign minister Hina Rabbani Khar back in 2011.
Keeping the snakes of terrorism in its backyard and using them against neighborhood countries, particularly against India, is Pakistan’s reality. It is increasingly cementing its identity as a terror sponsoring country in the international scenario.
Showing mirror to Pakistan is like making a peacock dance before a blind person and expect the visually impaired fellow to appreciate the sight. This is what we saw with Pakistan. Instead of learning lessons from Ms Clinton’s admonishments, Pakistan continued with its policy of harbouring snakes of terrorism in its backyard and time and again, use them explicitly against India. Pakistan-sponsored terrorism in Kashmir is a continuing phenomenon.
Now the snakes have begun to bite Pakistan in more profound way than before. But the country and its rogue army continues to bury its head in sand. Pakistan refuses to acknowledge the reality about the mess that it finds itself in.
Pakistan is in the crisis and chaos of its own making. It is a result of adopting terrorism and letting terror sanctuaries function on its soil as a state policy.
Regarded As Rogue State By International Community
This toxic state policy has damaged Pakistan in multiple ways. It has given Pakistan the identity of rogue state before the international community but has also shaken its very foundations. It is in perpetual mess and chaos. The economy is surviving on life saving drugs in the form of loans from international donors. The social and political order is beyond repair. The army, along with its notorious intelligence agency ISI is calling shots – killing, attacking or silencing anyone who raise his head.
Poor Pakistani people are dying due to starvation or in want of medicare or ration. Political class and the government functionaries are enjoying the wrestling match of name calling and chair snatching.
Imran Is Lucky He Survived Assassination Attempt
It is in this background that the attack on the former Pakistan Prime Minister and cricket icon Mr Imran Khan should be seen. Anyone in Pakistan who does not do the bidding for its army is bound to meet the same fate. Imran is lucky that he survived the assassination attempt, which he says was planned by the current PM of Pakistan Shahbaz Sharif, the present home minister Rana Sonauallah and a major general of Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) – the military intelligence wing which has traditionally has kept its nook around every civilian institution of the country and makes them dance to their tunes.
Pakistan state craft would always give an impression that such assassinations were result of political violence. Mr Khan took the lid off the can of worms by naming the actual actors behind his attack and exposed the role of its army and ISI more profoundly.
Army and ISI has never allowed the civilian governments to rule the country. The Army knows that the civilian government will make the Army subservient to the elected leaders. Pakistan army will never allow this. They instead have their own puppets behind the facade of democracy or elected leadership which is actually the selected lot.
That is why the Pakistan history is replete with incidents like the one that happened with Mr. Khan.
Extreme Political Violence Has Old History In Pakistan
The violence against political leaders of all parties and affiliations began with the assassination of its first Prime Minister Liaquat Ali Khan in 1951 at a political rally in Rawalpindi.
Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, the father of Benazir who was elected as prime minister in 1970, was hanged on a disputed conviction for conspiring to commit a political murder by Zia ul-Haq, the military dictator.
In August 1988, the then-president and army chief of Pakistan, General Zia-ul-Haq died after a C-130 carrying him exploded soon after take-off from Bahawalpur airbase.
In 2003, Pervez Musharraf survived an assassination attempt when a bomb exploded soon after his highly-guarded convoy crossed a bridge in Rawalpindi.
On December 27, 2007, Benazir Bhutto was assassinated in a suicide bombing in Rawalpindi. Bhutto had been the PM of Pakistan twice and was the leader of the opposition Pakistan People’s Party at that time.
Now Mr. Imran Khan was shot in the shin when his anti-government protest convoy came under attack in the east of the country in what his aides said was a clear assassination attempt.
At a time of such intense political polarization and public anger, appropriate security precautions must be taken by the Pakistan to protect its leaders. Otherwise the country whose foundations rest on chaos and crisis is bound to have a shaky fall. It is shaking from within and it seems the time is not far when the thunderous fall will actually happen.