OSC: Pakistani Papers React to NYT Story on Expansion of CIA Activities

The USG Open Source Center provides translated excerpts from Pakistani editorials reacting to Sunday’s New York Times story on discussions by VP Dick Cheney with others in the administration about widening the role in Pakistan of the Central Intelligence Agency and giving it permission to carry out paramilitary strikes in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) where al-Qaeda leaders are suspected of having taken refuge. The Pakistani editors generally went ballistic about the idea of the American role expanding inside Pakistan.

“Urdu Press Roundup on New York Times Report on Pakistan’s Nuclear Arsenal
Corrected Version: correcting Subject
Pakistan — OSC Summary
Tuesday, January 8, 2008 . . .

The following is a roundup of excerpts from editorials on the New York Time’s report on action inside Pakistan and its nuclear assets, published in the 8 January 2008 editions of seven Urdu dailies:

Nawa-e Waqt Editorial Laments Pro-US Policies of Incumbent Rulers

Questioning the need for direct US operations inside Pakistan, the editorial says: “It is hard to know when our rulers will realize the fact that the US has made Pakistan a target. Pakistan has been weakened greatly as a result of the policies pursued over the past six years. Due to this, not only is a rehearsal being conducted to seize Pakistan’s nuclear assets but a military operation is being launched using the excuse of Al-Qa’ida and the Taliban. This is the reward for the services that the Musharraf regime has rendered in the wake of 9/11. Lawlessness, terrorism, and unrest reign supreme in the length and breadth of the country. This has exposed the illegitimacy and inefficiency of the Musharraf regime. Therefore, it will be self-deception to believe that the strategy of the current government will yield good results in the future and that we will be able to counter the US designs.”

Jinnah Editorial Discusses Threats to Country’s Nuclear Program

Referring to the reports published persistently by the western media against Pakistan’s nuclear assets, the editorial remarks: “Pakistan has promoted its nuclear program by making great sacrifices. The United States has not only cursed those who have advanced this program but also spared no effort to insult them. It is now our responsibility to mobilize all means to defend it, and to defy the bullying, pressure, and allegations as our nuclear program is a guarantee of our survival and integrity. The US has bad designs against it. It is gradually moving forward in this regard. The situation in the country is not encouraging and the provinces have also started to raise voices of discontent.”

Islam Editorial Sees US Paving Way for Aggression Against Pakistan

Taking serious notice of the reports being published against Pakistan and its nuclear program as what was done ahead of the aggression against Iraq and Afghanistan, the editorial comments: “First and foremost, these reports and statements show that all the efforts and sacrifices made by Pakistan after joining the so-called US-led war on terrorism, is proving to be an albatross around its own neck. On the one hand, the US is demanding more and more sacrifices from Pakistan. On the other, it has been decided that the war, launched on the excuse of the Al-Qa’ida and Taliban, will be thrust on Pakistan through direct US aggression. All these reports prove nothing except that the volley of allegations made by President Bush, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, Defense Secretary Robert Gates, to the US media, and other countries, was not just a blame-game. These allegations were also aimed at preparing the world like it was primed ahead of the invasion of Iraq and Afghanistan through hues and cries. There is great hue and cry against Pakistan, persistent propaganda, allegations, planning, threats, tirades by the US Presidential hopefuls, other individuals and agencies. The target of all of them is the one and same i.e. the destruction of Pakistan and elimination of its nuclear program.”

Jasarat Editorial Says US Aggression to be Met With Full Force

Emphasizing that the US should not expect that aggression in Tribal Areas of Pakistan will be smooth sailing, the editorial says: “There are reports that a secret meeting was held at the White House between the security advisors of President Bush and Dick Cheney and Condoleezza Rice in which giving more powers to the US troops and the CIA to launch aggressive operation in Pakistan’s Tribal Areas was considered. Reports have already been published in the US media that the CIA is launching operations in the Tribal Areas. The Pakistan Government has already rejected these reports. It is not possible for foreign troops to remain unharmed after entering Pakistani territory. The first thing is that the tribesmen, who are being targeted at US behest, will resist them. Then, this will be followed by the Pakistan Army, which has not become so unresponsive as to allow any enemy to launch willful operation inside its territory for the sake of a few (individuals).”

Jang Editorial Asks President Musharraf to Talk to President Bush

Lamenting the US design against Pakistan’s nuclear assets, and propaganda against it, the editorial comments: “Not only Pakistan, but also Iran’s efforts to acquire nuclear technology for peaceful purposes have become intolerable for the US and other countries. It appears that responsible US circles including President Bush, members of his administration, and several presidential hopefuls are not willing to bother about the assurances being given by Pakistan. Therefore, it is the demand of the impending danger that the president should himself talk to President Bush in order to get a clear picture of the situation, and the secret anti-Pakistan designs of the hostile powers. Musharraf should ask Bush whether this is the reward for supporting the US and the entire world community in the war on terrorism and extremism, and the US action to dismantle a recognized government of a Muslim country? Do they want to deprive Pakistan of its nuclear capability and nuclear assets in exchange for these services? Threats are being made about launching military operations against Pakistan under the guise of allegations.”

Pakistan Editorial Criticizes Propaganda Against the Country

Expressing surprise over the persistent campaign being launched against Pakistan, the editorial states: “So far as the report published in the New York Times is concerned, it is dangerous and a cause of great concern. The Pakistan foreign office and Inter Services Public Relations have adopted a very serious and solid stance regarding the report. However, the thing to ponder over is why does Pakistan have to face such media campaigns and being put in an awkward position time and again. It has become a routine matter every other day for the US to create some mischief against Pakistan. Other European countries are involved in the same kind of activities. The US is going through an electoral process these days and the presidential hopefuls are also making irresponsible statements. Their irresponsible statements are also published in the media in addition to the New York Times report. These statements are also very dangerous and alarming. It appears as if there is no major issue for debate in the United States. Have the United States, and presidential candidates resolved all the (internal) problems faced by their own country?”

Ausaf Editorial Urges Rulers to Take Stock of Their Policies

Appealing to the nation to unite to counter the conspiracies being hatched by the enemies of Pakistan, the editorial states: “We believe that the rulers have a heavy responsibility at this critical juncture to review their policies instead of trusting the US blindly. They should give preference to their interests over those of the US and respond to them boldly. The US should be told that the Pakistani nation and army know how to defend their borders well. Every child of Pakistan can sacrifice his life to defend the frontiers of the country. Therefore, there is a need for the rulers and politicians to stop making allegations against each other and unite to counter the hostile forces.” ‘

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