NATO’s New Battlefield: Pakistan
March 31, 2012
Selected and translated by Zaheer Mahmood Siddiqui
Dozens of Pakistani troops were martyred or injured in a barbaric attack by US-led Nato helicopters on the Salala check post…[T]he US military has obstinately put the entire blame on Pakistani troops in the two investigations.
[A] US military investigation exonerated the Americans from any aggression. A second inquiry by the Pentagon to determine whether any American military personnel should be punished said “no”, justifying the action through the childish defence of the Americans firing in self-defence…
The inquiry report further claimed that Pakistani troops fired first from two check posts that were not on Nato maps and that they kept firing even after the Americans tried to warn them that they were shooting at coalition forces. The US-led Nato soldiers retaliated in self-defence and the Pakistani troops are solely responsible for the incident.
This is akin to a criminal intimidating the judge…
Let us suppose that our troops fired first. Were they so helpless that they could not hit any helicopter? Not a single attacker was injured in the crossfire that continued for more than one and a half hours. How can this be termed a shootout between the two forces?
The Parliamentary Committee on National Security (PCNS) suggested in the recommendations presented before parliament that the resumption of Nato supplies should be made conditional to an unconditional apology from the US on the Salala airstrikes. But the Washington administration is of the view that if President Obama formally tendered an apology to Pakistan, it would benefit his Republican opponents in the presidential race…So this is a big problem for them. Instead of compensating [Pakistan] or giving assurances that such attacks will not recur, the Americans consider it insulting to apologise over the barbaric act.
This is sheer hypocrisy: to declare a state a coalition partner, use its soil and resources without any hindrance, and violate Pakistan’s territorial sovereignty without any regrets. Adding salt to injury have been the “do more” demands.