Imran Khan’s speech at the United Nations was wrong on many counts. For me the most disturbing aspect is not his theorizing on how a future war with India will unfold but that the Armed Forces of Pakistan have elected to remain silent on the Prime Minister’s claim that we will lose a conventional war with India. This is not only false but hugely damaging because it undermines the very basis of our military spending. I am willing to state categorically that the Pakistan Air Force will NOT lose the air battle. I know my Service and its professionalism. I know its leadership; I know its operational cadre. The Pakistan Air Force will emerge victorious in any future air war with India. What I cannot understand is why the Chief of Air Staff has not apprised our Prime Minister of this fact. Imran Khan is a military illiterate and a devout pacifist; he has no understanding of military strategy or tactics. He does not have the ability to assimilate Sun Tzu or Clauzewitz but I had hoped that our military leaders would have briefed him on how wars are fought and what is ‘force structuring’. As a proud, pioneer Combat Commander of the PAF, I always preached to my juniors that if they found themselves in a fair fight, it meant that they had not planned their mission properly. We will not fight India as equals. We will not fight fairly. India may be the Goliath, Pakistan is David. It may have the numbers; we have the intellect. Imran Khan has no clue of our capability. He has undermined the very essence of our conventional might. He does not understand that our strength lies not in numbers but in superior ability, unconventional tactics and brilliance in planning. I fail to understand why our Chiefs of Staff have acquiesced to the Prime Minister’s claim that losing a conventional war with India is a foregone conclusion. If this be the case, why would then the general public not question the logic of expending huge amounts of scarce monies to maintain Pakistan’s conventional forces. Once again, let me reiterate that the PAF will NOT lose the air battle. Furthermore, I am very certain that creating a favorable air situation, the PAF shall enable the Pak Army and Navy to achieve their conventional objectives also.
Ignorance of military matters is perhaps pardonable, but the juvenile frivolity with which Imran Khan has built on his fallacious assumption of Pakistan losing a conventional war goes beyond the pale and can never be excused. Our Prime Minister has promised the world that Pakistan will commit national suicide through a nuclear exchange. In doing so, he has caused immeasurable damage to Pakistan. My real dismay is that no one, civilian or uniformed, has had the sense to correct our errant Prime Minister. It now falls upon me to let him know the monstrosity of his faux pas on the world stage. Read on.
HEADS I WIN; TAILS YOU LOSE
I am sorry that I am unable to share the euphoria that surrounds Imran Khan’s speech at the United Nations General Assembly. As the Pakistani nation waxes lyrical about the Prime Ministers visit to the US, there is absolutely no recognition of the monumental disaster that now looms on the horizon for Pakistan.
- An Egypt Air Boeing 767 ploughs into the Atlantic Ocean after taking off from JFK airport, killing all 217 passengers and crew on board. The investigators finalize the investigation by claiming that the first officer intentionally nosedived into the sea yelling ‘La illa ha ill lallah’.”
- Hijacked planes are flown into the twin towers and the Pentagon by Muslim hijackers chanting ‘La illa ha ill lallah’
- A doctor drives a vehicle loaded with gas canisters into Glasgow Airport terminal, shouting ‘La illa ha ill lallah’
- A synchronized attack on the London underground system is carried out by suicide bombers who recite ‘La illa ha ill lallah’ as they unleash their horror.
The list is endless. Muslim fanatics routinely slits throats of fellow human beings reciting the prayer, “Allah o Akbar”; “La illa ha ill lallah”. Every Muslim suicide bomber always recite that same prayer as they detonate themselves. For Muslims, the ‘Kalma-e-Tayyaba’ is a prayer that is recited whenever one is faced with imminent death. Not so for non-Muslims. To them it is the cry of fanatics about to kill their fellow beings. For them the ‘Kalma-e-Tayyaba’ is a signature tune of the suicide bomber.
When individuals blow themselves up proclaiming the Oneness of Allah, the world recoils in terror. When the Prime Minister of Pakistan promises the world a nuclear holocaust using that very same declaration, why would the world not react similarly? It would be argued that the suicide bomber is a misguided lunatic whereas Imran Khan is a straight-talking leader explaining a military plan. Pointing to heaven saying ‘La illa ha ill lallah’ and promising the world a nuclear winter is him being honest and forthright. The argument is patently false. The world has seen many suave, well educated, westernized Muslims perform horrific acts and will logically equate the leader of a Muslim nation that has a very checkered history with the mindset of the suicide bomber. Call it what you may; a warning; a cry for reason, a wake up alarm, a plea for rationality but rest assured that the world will recognize it as a threat of an impending act of terror. Of course, it shall listen, it shall placate, it shall mollify; it may even appease but we shall be deluding ourselves if we believe that the world shall allow nuclear blackmail to go unchecked and remain an option for an errant third world country.
It had taken Pakistan 20 years of protracted, painstaking efforts to convince the world that we were a responsible nuclear power. In one fleeting moment of self-aggrandizement, a narcissistic leader of our emotional, hysterical nation has destroyed that belief. The world now confronts a nation that is willing to commit suicide and, in the process, destroy the globe. Thus far, Pakistan was a politically juvenile state which had acquired a dangerous weapon but had been motivated to keep it safe and out of harm’s way. An irresponsible leader has now brought the weapon out into the open and is brandishing it brazenly. Today he seeks resolution of the Kashmir issue. Tomorrow he may use it to resolve a dispute about sharing riverine waters. Emboldened, that self-seeking individual might then become delusional enough to attempt solution of the Palestine problem brandishing the same weapon.
Well done Imran Khan. You have achieved something truly amazing. Standing tall on the world’s most august stage, you have explained the grandeur of Islam to a global audience. An audience which you arrogantly proclaim has no understanding of our beautiful religion. And then, in the very same breath, reciting the prayer of the suicide bomber, you have declared emphatically that the Islamic Republic of Pakistan will blow itself and the world up in a nuclear holocaust.
The hawks of Pakistan believe otherwise. They believe that Imran Khan’s public warning of a nuclear holocaust will motivate the United Nations to resolve the Kashmir issue. They may well be right. Assuming that they are, do we realize the true import of this outcome? Have we thought through the Kashmiri right of self-determination? Pakistan has always labored under the delusion that Indian held Kashmir will join Pakistan. Why? Why would a group with its own defined identity, having shed the shackles of occupation, opt to be ruled by Islamabad when it can be a free, independent nation? If the United Nations is able to enforce its resolutions and Indian Held Kashmir gains its freedom, why would not Azad Kashmir join its brethren to form a greater Kashmir? Pakistan has always failed to recognize the inevitability of Azad Kashmir departing the Federation in the event that the Kashmiris are allowed to choose their destiny.
Heads, you win, Tails, I lose.