US presence in Pakistan – reality and myth
December 14, 2009 § 10 Comments
Recently, there’s been a lot of US involvement into the region, particularly ever since Pakistan’s recent chapter on counter-insurgency started. There have been rumors of US presence, not only of officials but security personnel too, but it had been denied vehemently by the Pakistan government.
However, as time elapses, several of these rumors are starting to find ground, both at home and abroad. This is rather bad since this only affirms that there’s a lot going on behind the scenes which the government is either not ready to confide the masses with or simply lacks the courage to do so.
The blackwater issue is one example for that case. The Pakistani officials and US embassy both have been actively and explicitly denying the presence of this private security company in Pakistan ever since the rumors surfaced. In fact, the famed Rehman Malik went as far as to saying that he’d resign if such a claim is substantiated. However, a piece in ‘The Nation’ done by Jeremy Scahill pretty much changed things as he provided solid citations to Blackwater’s presence in Pakistan. Although there’s no official admission on the issue as of yet, the army has defended this move with apologetic tones, albeit subtle in actually accepting the charge.
Another thing that has been bugging me is that there’s been a lot of movement of US embassy personnel and vehicles in many major cities. While few of such movements have been intercepted by the police and the army, one can only wonder how much of it goes unnoticed. What’s strikingly similar in nearly all of these interceptions is that the ‘foreigners’ in these vehicles either carry fake identities or drive in cars with fake registration numbers and are nearly always rescued quickly by the embassy officials.
In the most recent of such happening, the embassy personnel were intercepted in Lahore where they were driving in a car with fake registration number.
“Police sources said the vehicle had a fake registration number of Karachi. However, US Consulate officials again intervened and took the vehicle and its occupants with them, without letting the security personnel search them, they added.”
Which also means that whatever it is, the US embassy is totally into it and won’t allow it’s personnel or vehicles be searched. The pieces of news further says:
“It was third incident in a week in the city when security agencies intercepted vehicles owned by US Consulate.”
What is disturbing is that the serious media outlets have not yet taken to issue rather seriously and are, for now, giving it only a passing importance in the bigger picture. However, considering the times we live in, it certainly can’t be ruled out as a mere co-incidence and investigations must look into the exact intent or plans of US embassy in Pakistan.
And so must be done before our internal peace is expended on the chess board of international interests.