A Pakistani General Resigning?

The Pakistani generals are not famous for resigning, not even when they lose half a country (Yahya Khan) or start a disastrous war without the knowledge of their government (Pervez Musharraf). In fact, when they make huge blunders, they usually tend to sack the elected governments and declare themselves the rulers of our poor nation. We are the only nation in the modern history that has been conquered by its own army four times.

So, the recent rumors that General Pasha, the erstwhile head of the ISI, is likely to resign are rather more of a wishful thinking. No sir, our generals do not go down with the sinking ship, they just leave the ship on their reserved life boats, or, in this case, golden parachutes. So, I will belive it when I see it.

The case against the ISI head is rather strong: Under his watch Osama bin Laden was discovered to have been living, for five years, right next to the very factory where officers are produced. This is not just incompetence; it is rather a deeply ironic and sadly hilarious incompetence. I mean no one would belive this if this had been written as fiction or made into a movie.

Here is an organization that eats up a large chunk of our national budget, is rarely audited, and is not directly accountable to anyone if Pakistan and now we have found it to be extremely incompetent.

If we are setting up the precedence for resignations by our generals, then let us also put the DG MI on this list as well, for it is his job to know such things about terrorists and stuff as well. And also the head of the Pakistani Air Defense–both army and airforce–should also be kind enough to tender their resignations for failing to detect American gunships flying over their territory.

It is hard to resign as a general: there is so much to lose. But I think this time there is no hiding behind the national security skirt as the national security itself has been found to be lacking a skirt.

So, let us have it from our armchair generals: a bit of courage to take responsibility. A resignation, or a few resignations, and public apologies to a poor nation that underwrites their priveleges would be a good start.

I will believe it when I see it!

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Pakistan Reduces Number of US Trainers for “Fear of Spying”

Flag of the Pakistan Army
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This is a headline from daily Dawn: ” ‘Pakistan’s request for fewer US trainers reflects fear of spying.’ Makes one wonder about the nature of Pakistan’s policies toward US “advisors.” First of all, why does a military force that eats up a major part of Pakistani GDP need the Americans to come and train them: don’t they have training facilities of their own? And, let us assume, if such American specialists are needed for some reason, why can’t they be monitored and whetted correctly.

Last I checked, the MI and ISI were quite good at keeping tabs on their own officers and politicians. What prevents them from being similarly cautious about the American trainers. And why, as the Raymond Davis case has taught us, did they not know as to how many private US contractors were working in Pakistan? How hard can it be to keep a record of that, given the resources of the Pakistani intelligence agencies?

And now, as the public opinion has become increasingly anti-American, thanks to Mr. Davis, our armchair generals and drawing-room politicians have suddenly realized that having so many US “experts” in the field could facilitate spying!!

How brilliant of them to finally solve this great mystery!