Tuesday, 29 July 2014

South Asia and MENA Inferno

Are the conflicts real or just to keep arsenal factories running at full capacity?
Over the last more than three years I have written dozens of articles on “Geo Politics in South Asia and MENA”. I have a few premises: 1) the region is reach in agriculture that provides food and raw material for industries, 2) it has huge population which makes it one of the biggest markets, 3) countries located in the region are rich in minerals ‑ from crude oil to precious metals including uranium. That is the reason region remained prime attraction during colonial and cold war eras and it remains the biggest attraction for Fortune-500 Companies, who install and topple governments in the countries located in the region. Super powers also create conflicts, support rebel groups by providing funds and arms to continue ‘proxy wars’, mainly to keep their arsenal factories running at full capacities.
Since I live in Pakistan, my concerns can be priorities as follows: 1) the immediate concern is my country and its immediate neighbors, 2) proxy wars being fought in the regions, 3) hatred being created among groups in the name of cast, creed and religion and 4) wars and atrocities being impose to plunge these countries deeper into poverty and hunger.
Let me begin with Pakistan, while granting independent status to India and Pakistan British Raj let a thorn – Kashmir. Based on the conflict hawks were groomed on both sides of borders, one claiming that India can’t be divided once again on the basis of religion and other insisting that relationship between the two countries can’t be normalized till resolution of Kashmir issue.
Over more than 65 years both the countries have been spending billions of dollars annually to accumulate more and more arms that includes attaining ‘atomic power status’. Had this amount spent on development and welfare of people in both the countries, I am sure by this time the per capita income would have reached US$25,000 as against existing paltry income ranging from US$1,200 to US$2,500.  
For the last four decades Pakistan has been fighting ‘Proxy US War’ in Afghanistan.  The country was dragged in this conflict to contain USSR’s access to warm waters. However, it seems that in the post 9/11 era the US occupation of Afghanistan is to get control on ‘white powder’, which has become the biggest source for purchasing arms and the breeding nursery for mercenaries who indulge in cross border terrorism in Pakistan and Iran. Taliban are the product of United States that fought its Proxy war in Afghanistan and now are fighting against the ruling regimes in many Muslim countries including Pakistan. They have been given different names in different regions but have one common object, spreading anarchy.
India is often projected as: 1) one of the biggest democracies of the world, 2) nonaligned and secular state and 3) regional super power. However, it had extracted benefits during cold war era and even today it is drawing benefits from both United States and Russia in the name of countering expansionism of China. The sitting Prime Minister of India has been alleged for genocide of Muslims and supporting extremist Hindus. India has been very smartly extracting benefits from United States, the most prominent being ‘agreement for nuclear technology for civilian use’ in exchange for deserting Iran-Pakistan-India gas pipeline project.
The United States has been supporting India in creating its hegemony in South Asia and also encouraged it to deal with Somali pirates’ issue. While Pakistan was forced to stop purchase of oil from Iran and construct Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline, India was not only allowed to buy huge quantity of oil but also to help financially/technically in the construction of Chabahar port in Sistan-Baluchistan province of Iran. The two measures were aimed at keeping Pakistan dependent on Middle Eastern oil and undermine importance of Gwadar port. However, it remains a fact Pakistan offers the shortest and the most cost effective route to Central Asia passing through Afghanistan.
Many Pakistanis suspect that militancy and anti-Pakistan sentiments in its Baluchistan province are being created to create justification for the creation of Grater Baluchistan that will comprise one slice each from Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan. This proposed country will have over 1,200 kilometer long coastal line. This has huge oil and gas reserves, which will come directly/indirectly under the control of United States and the country will also bring transit trade from Pakistan to virtually zero.
Iran faces sanction for more than 35 years, which were eased recently for the reason best known to the developed countries. However, some quarters say it is an attempt to ‘terrify’ Saudi Arabia, which was brainwashed in the past and made to believe that ‘Iran is a bigger threat to Muslims as compared to Israel’. It is on record that Saudi Arabia and Kuwait encouraged Iraq under Saddam Hussain to attack Iran and provided funds to continue this war for nearly a decade. The breach between Saudi Arabia and United States widened when the sole surviving super power refused to attack Syria.
The recent insurgency in Iraq is aimed at splitting it into three feeble countries. After facing most humiliating defeat in Lebanon and Syria, Israel under the patronage of United States is supporting various groups, the most prominent being ISIL. Some analysts say yet another ‘Lawrence of Arabia’ is in making. His forces are stealing Iraqi oil, selling it to other countries and buying arms from the receipts.
Interestingly, the United States is warring countries not to buy oil from ISIL, but some countries are certainly buying it, may be off the record and selling it as ‘their won oil’ in the international markets.  One point is very clear that stolen oil is being used for purchasing arms for encountering ruling regimes in countries located in the region, particularly Iraq and Syria.

Interestingly ISIL claims to be fighting for the rights of Muslims but putting no resistance against Israeli atrocities in Gaza. This gives a reason to believe that ISIL is there to fragment Muslims and make them weaker but not to pose any resistance against plans of CIA and Israeli intelligence agency.

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