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February 27, 2015 Special Dispatch No. 5979

Former Pakistan Army Chief Gen. Aslam Beg: 'America Is Not Just Any Other Country, But It Is A Superpower That Has Made The World A Dangerous Land'

February 27, 2015
Pakistan, Pakistan | Special Dispatch No. 5979

In a recent article, former Pakistan army chief General Mirza Aslam Beg examined the geostrategic scenario emerging in Asia as a result of the growing India-U.S. military and economic relationship. It should be noted that U.S. President Barack Obama was chief guest at the Republic Day parade in New Delhi on January 26, 2015.

In the article, published by the Urdu-language daily Roznama Ummat, Beg argued that India-U.S. relations are giving birth to a new reality in which India is required to counter the growing influence of China in the region, and the U.S., India, and Japan are coordinating their actions as part of a grand strategy.

Beg argued that this geostrategic transformation is paving the way for China, Russia, and Pakistan to work together, along with Afghanistan, which, he noted, has kept India and the U.S. separate from its new policy to engage its neighboring countries such as Iran and Russia.

The following are excerpts from the article:

"The Objective Of The India-U.S. Strategic Partnership  Is To Establish India's Hegemony In The Region From Afghanistan [Through Pakistan] To Bangladesh; This Was The Thinking Behind The Declaration Of Afghanistan As Part Of South Asia"

"There is a face to the factors determining South Asia's geostrategic shape, which is derived from [Indian Prime Minister Narendra] Modi's 'Act Asia' strategy [editorial note: the Indian policy is called 'Act East,' having evolved from 'Look East'] and Obama's 'Pivot to Asia' policy. In reality, the gist of the two strategies is the failed policy adopted in the aftermath of 9/11. The objective of the India-U.S. Strategic Partnership prepared in 2005 is to establish India's hegemony in the region from Afghanistan [through Pakistan] to Bangladesh. This was the thinking behind the declaration of Afghanistan as part of South Asia; India benefited from this thought, and by joining hands with the allies [in Afghanistan] thrust the scourge of terrorism [on Pakistan] and established centers of espionage against all neighboring countries, especially Pakistan.

"In 2005 itself, a civil-nuclear pact was agreed [between the U.S. and India], to get that which India voted against regarding the Iranian nuclear program [in a resolution at the UN International Atomic Energy Agency in November 2009]. And by allying with America and its allies, [India] was emboldened to play its role against the growing dangers of Islamic extremism in the region. Sadly, America and its allies were badly defeated in this objective [as the Taliban thrived in Afghanistan]. Recently, Modi has given a new geostrategic direction to the region by befriending America By rejecting its ideology as a member-country of the Non-Aligned [Movement], India has adopted an aligned identity, getting tied in a long-term military relationship from the Gulf of Aden to the Straits of Malacca. This agreement will be effective for ten years. Besides, signatures have been put to defense, technical, and trade agreements, as per which India will become capable of building aircraft carriers.

"India has also become part of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation Forum, established by America and Japan, under which it is practically bound to break up China's New Silk Road Partnership. In addition, India is also bound to counter the growing influence of China. Therefore, China has obtained many advantages [via agreements] through the Euro-Asian Land Bridge land route built by it and the String of Pearls ports in several countries which are spread from the Middle East to China [through the Indian Ocean]. China's growing influence and reach is unacceptable to America, India, and their allies.

"Modi's important goal is to help the fruits of economic progress reach the poor people. Modi's goal is not to make the fruits of economic progress reach people as per the 'trickle down' principle behind the established international economic system; his goal is to make the fruits of 'trickle up' progress reach the poor class for which it will be essential to depend on goods manufactured within the country [hence, the 'Make in India' strategy adopted by Modi]. Obama's goal, too, is to make India an important power in Asia by enabling its economic progress because America considers India's power as important to the achievement of its objectives. For the achievement of this goal, the supply of American technology [to India] will be very beneficial, a fact that Modi understands well."

"The Clear Target Of India-U.S. Strategic Partnership Is To Limit The Growing Power Of China"; "But In Response To It, An Environment Of Understanding In Military And Economic Relations Between China, Pakistan, And Russia Is Being Smoothened"

"Therefore, India and America have set a goal to take their bilateral trade from $100 million to $500 million [sic, actually: $100 billion to $500 billion], which equals bilateral trade with China. Additionally, the purpose of Obama's visit to India [to be the chief guest at the January 26 Republic Day parade in New Delhi] was to find a formula under which concerns since 2005 about India's atomic law [which require economic costs for foreign companies in the event of nuclear disasters] could be addressed and India could be supplied with atomic technology. An agreement has been reached to this effect."

"[] On the contrary, during the 1950s, which was the era of Cold War, Pakistan was forced to become the ally of America, but as a result of its policies it had to go through difficult experiences because its powerful partner used Pakistan to suit its needs, and when there was no need [for Pakistan] turned its eyes away. The worst example of this was set in 2001 when Pakistan was told [after 9/11]: 'either you are with us or against us.' Scared, Pakistani took an immoral and illogical decision to participate in the American war against the brother Islamic nation of Afghanistan, as a result of which Pakistan had to bear irreparable losses, and continues to bear them even now. Situations emerging in recent times are extremely difficult for Pakistan, especially since terrorism and political fragmentation has spread inside the country, and there is a situation of war on our north-western borders [along Afghanistan].

"However, even in this entangled scenario, there are hints of hope which require us to make decisions with understanding and foresight, and derive full advantages from these opportunities. At the logical level, it is correct to say that the clear target of India-U.S. strategic partnership is to limit the growing power of China. Surely this is a cause of worry for China, but in response to it an environment of understanding in military and economic relations between China, Pakistan, and Russia is being smoothened, which will open new paths for Pakistan's security. At the 'Heart of Asia Conference' organized in Beijing [in October 2014], Afghan President Ashraf Ghani announced that decisions for the future of Afghanistan will be made in a unique way, for which he has established close relationships with the six neighboring countries - Pakistan, Iran, China, Russia, and [some] Central Asian countries; and excluded from this are India and America, due to whose conspiracies the situation of civil war was born in 1990s Afghanistan. Therefore, the Afghan nation has now decided that it would not enter anyone's deception...

"This is a precious moment for Pakistan to pave the way for new foundations of Pakistan-America relations based on mutual respect and interests. Therefore, it is essential to keep this point in mind that America is not just any other country, but it is a superpower that has made the world a dangerous land. In the recent past, wherever America intervened it has only left behind destruction, and such that even a dictator would not have caused. The examples of Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, and Syria are in front of us. Therefore, this is important for us to understand how soon we leave America's strong sinew (bear hug) and establish a confidence-full relationship so that it becomes possible to breathe freely in a free atmosphere."

Source: Roznama Ummat (Pakistan), February 16, 2015.

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