Pakistan 'Recognizes' Israel
In June 2003, Pervez Musharraf, Pakistan's self-appointed President and strongman, was summoned to Washington. He returned with two errands from President George Bush. Pakistan must recognize Israel and dispatch its troops to police America's illegal occupation of Iraq. There was money in it for Pakistani rulers: three billion dollars over the next five years.
Still in Washington, Musharraf told Pakistani reporters that he had made no "deal" with the United States. "Whatever we are doing, we are doing in our national interest, and fortunately our national interest coincides with those of the United States, which is the beauty of our relationship." At the least, one must thank the strongman for his frankness. Here is his public confession that his government, unreservedly, accepts the new American contract in the Islamic world. Pakistan is fighting-and will fight-America's war against terrorism, which many Muslims see as a cover for America's emasculation of Islamic societies.
Is there "beauty" in this relationship? It is a relationship that was cemented within minutes of Colin Powell's call to the strongman on the night of September 11. Instantly, Pakistan offered not only its airspace to American warplanes and missiles; it invited Americans to launch their invasion of Afghanistan from half a dozen bases within Pakistan. Soon, American operatives were stationed in Pakistani cities and making arrests on Pakistani territory. It would be difficult to come up with another example of a country which surrendered its sovereignty more precipitously. And the strongman sees "beauty" in this surrender.
Now the strongman has a new charge from America's Likudniks. "Recognize the state of Israel," they demand. This Israeli state had its origin in a brilliant conspiracy that leveraged the power of the very peoples who hated the Jews. The Zionists made a compact with their ancient tormentors: We will rid you of your Jews if you help us to establish a Jewish colonial-settler state in Palestine. In addition, the Jewish state could serve as imperialist Europe's outpost in the Arab world. Western anti-Semites found the offer irresistible. Britain first signed the compact in 1917, but when it wavered, the United States stepped in to establish Israel, and since the mid-1960s it has been its chief protagonist, softening the Islamic world for Israeli hegemony with wars and bribes.
In order to establish a lasting hegemony, Israel demand unconditional recognition from its Arab neighbors. The first break-through came in 1978 when Egypt recognized Israel in return for an annual US payment of two billion dollars. The second break-through came in 1993, after the end of the Cold War, when Arafat and his aging cronies bartered the Palestinian's historic claims to 78 percent of historic Palestine1 for the right to police Occupied West Bank and Gaza. Most Arab states would have happily followed suit-and a few did - but for the growing Islamist opposition at home.
The American pressure on the Pakistani junta to recognize Israel could not have come at a worse time. There are precious few in the Islamic world who believe any of the lies used to justify America's illegal invasion of Iraq; they are convinced that this was the action of a Laconic American administration acting at the behest of Israel. The grand deception of a "peace process," inaugurated by the Oslo Accords in 1993, is now in complete tatters. Israel continues to strengthen the foundations of an apartheid state, completing the separation of "unequal races" with a wall that reaches twenty feet high. Under the circumstances, the US pressure can only be seen as more evidence of the Israeli tail wagging the American dog. The United States is pressing an Israeli demand on the Pakistani junta.
Incredibly, the Pakistani strongman has the chutzpah to argue the case for recognition. "In my view .. if the Palestinians themselves undertake discussions and go for friendship with Israel .. then what's the problem with us? What is our enmity with Israel?" Is the strongman willing to wait until the Palestinians have made their peace with Israel; until they have their own sovereign state on a mere 22 percent of historic Palestine; until the four million Palestinian refugees-ethnically cleansed in 1948 and 1967-can return to their homes inside Israel? It is clear that the strongman is in no mood to wait for these results, or that he has any interest in helping to advance these results. He must do the bidding of Washington: and he wants to do it now.
The General asks: "What is our enmity with Israel?" Has he forgotten that Pakistan is the only Muslim country to possess nuclear weapons, and although these weapons are pointed at India, Israel cannot regard Pakistan's nuclear asset with equanimity, with or without Pakistani recognition of Israel? As the military chief, Musharraf should know that the Pakistan military expects and prepares against a pre-emptive strike on its nuclear facilities from India as well as Israel, or a coordinated strike by both. India and Israel form a natural axis against Pakistan: and that is a hard geopolitical reality that will scarcely be altered by recognition.
Several commentators in Pakistan-with a naivete that must be rare for self-proclaimed realists-have offered a list of advantages which recognition will bring to Pakistan. The list includes reduced risk of a strike against Pakistan's nuclear assets, access to Israel's military technology, and throwing a spanner in Israel's growing special relationship with India. These realists forget that recognition is a one-time act, and once accomplished it carries little or no leverage. What did the Palestinians get from their recognition of Israel?
On the other hand, let the realists be warned of some real liabilities that are likely to flow from recognition. Nearly all Pakistanis will see this as another treasonous sell-out, a costly concession extracted from their spineless rulers in exchange for loans that will only deepen Pakistan's foreign debt; and, this can only strengthen the Islamist cause that the United States wants to keep at bay. Normal relations with Israel will improve Israel's intelligence gathering in Pakistan, making Pakistan's nuclear assets even more vulnerable to an Israeli or Indian strike. We should not discount the disquiet this will cause to our Iranian neighbor; this may push them even closer to India. Finally, the realists-who can scarcely afford to ignore the probability of some real events-should ask if the recognition will be allowed to stand, even if the Psalmists never manage to take power in Pakistan. Can Pakistan guarantee that the Israeli embassy and consulates in Pakistan will not become the target of violent attacks from Islamic extremists?
There is a reasonable chance, then, that this American move may backfire. It could backfire because it ignores-like nearly all the elements of American policy towards the Muslim countries-the force of Newtonian dynamics. Just because every action does not have an instant reaction in the world of social and political dynamics, short-sighted US policy makers rarely work through the long-term implications of their policy. If they do, they are convinced they have the cluster bombs to handle any adverse consequences. For fifty years, American policy has been building the grass-root forces in the Islamic world that have now begun to challenge American hegemony in their societies. It is tragic that as these forces become visible, the United States responds with more of the same. Perhaps, this is the only logic that makes sense to an imperialist elite, which has come to believe in the invincible power of cluster bombs and daisy cutters.
If Pakistan's rulers had attended to their country's national interest-and did not imagine that these interests were best served by doing America's bidding-they would have responded to US pressures by stating firmly that Pakistan and Pakistanis do recognize Israel-and they always have recognized Israel-for what it is.
Pakistanis recognize that Israel is a colonial-settler state; they recognize that this racist state was-and is-founded on terror and violence; they recognize that Israel was founded on the ruined foundations of a living Palestinian society; they recognize that Israel created a Jewish majority by ethnically cleansing more than a million Palestinians in 1948 and 1967; they recognize that Israel has a massive arsenal of nuclear weapons aimed at Islamic capitals; they recognize that Israel has armed and supported the most reactionary regimes since its creation, including apartheid South Africa and Idi Amin's Uganda; they recognize that Israel seeks to deepen its hegemonic dominance over the Arabs with American men, money and arms.
And yet, even today, I expect and hope that most Pakistanis would be glad to extend recognition to a country (by whatever name)-between the River Jordan and the Mediterranean-if it could grant equal rights to all its peoples, Jewish and Arab alike, and grant Palestinian refugees the 'right of return' to return to their homes. But a colonialist, racist, and hegemonic Israel is another matter. And, if Zengi, Nur al-Din, Salahuddin and the Egyptian Mamluks refused to recognize the Crusader states, can Muslims today be expected to choose differently?
M. Shahid Alam is professor of economics at Northeastern University. His last book, Poverty from the Wealth of Nations, was published by Palgrave in 2000. He may be reached at [email protected]. Visit his webpage at http://msalam.net M. Shahid Alam
Topics: Foreign Policy, Occupation, Pakistan, United States Of America
The slightest dispute would be met with young men eager to get their hands on seven virgins in paradise.We will always see beheadings and the act of burying people up to their necks in a hole,in order to stone them to death , as abhorrent.What served to seal things for the forseeable future ,was the shock and disgust of seeing people dancing in the streets in response to 9/11 and now, the resounding silence in response to Madrid.Further western aid to the bank accounts of Yasser Arafat ? Forget it .
Israel should not be recognized until it does something to ease the pain of the Palestinians it has so brutally wronged. Palestinians were thrown out of their own home for the sake of Jewish settlement, with absolutely no say, not to mention the lack of protest from the rest of the world. Israel is all-powerful, with complete, blind, US support--morality is no longer considered.
The constant question is: "why, pray, do Palestinians and Muslims feel the need to create terror?" What no one is understanding is that terrorism is the act of the oppressed--Palestinians have no rights and Israel's stronghold of the land of their forefathers and consumption of their resources shows no signs of subsiding, what do you expect them to do then? Sharon is wronging his own people by continuing to deny Palestinians even the most basic rights, forcing them to turn to bombings and crime. And Pakistan should support Israel's two-faced, demeaning, immoral and downright dirty agenda? Does Musharraf have no sense of comraderie with our Arab counterparts? Pakistan is said to be a Muslim country, but we are doing everything incorrectly, and hurting our own brothers and sisters for fake US support and money in aid.
Pakistan's history has been littered with corruption of all sorts and, yet again, it has let us down. Do Pakistani officials think that the US or Israel might actually assist them in a time of need? The US and Israel are blatantly using Pakistan, and that is the sad truth. Pakistan turned on Afghanistan and it sure hasn't wasted the opportunity to turn on the Arabs.
We are supposed to be Muslims... for Muslims not against them. May Allah safe us
Mr Liaqat Ali Khan on his visit to US was offered the same thing accepting israel and heres what he said "OUR SOULS ARE NOT FOR SALE" (for those who disagree or are neutral above is a food for thought)i have never read an intelligent article then this. very beautifully u summarised the historic nature of the conflict and the adverse consequences that we can face even after acceptance of israel.
President Musharraf will never accept Israel without the wishes of its majority of people and without the support of Saudi Arab. He is a smart
person who also understands geo-political realities. Under US pressure he stirred this discussion of recognising Israel but as the overwhelming Pakistani are against this proposition, it will not materialize. In my opinion President Musharraf is sincere to Pakistan and is not a corrupt general. We should support him and help him making correct decisions.
May Allah guide us all to the right path.....Nadeem
I am really against this article although I think that the point in this article went across very clear.Pakistan should not reconize Israel. Israel is an Jew state. Jews and Muslims Differ. And I am sure that my country Pakistan will face alot of attacks.
and Enjoy life, fearing Allah and Loving the most honored creation of AlLah; His magnificense, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH0,
At least Mr. Alam is not afraid to speak his mind concerning Mr. Musharraf's double dealing's with the Bush administration. I salute your courage and eloquence. May God Bless you,
First paragraph: I would instead be inclined to suggest that, on September 11, 2001 (CE), the general saw the future of playing host to al-Qaida.
Last paragraph: Forgive me - but it appears to be a bit too contrived. Why would non-Jewish subjects wish to be obliged to support a (potentially) soon to be restored Jewish priest caste? I'm certainly no student of the Talmud but I have the impression that some parts of the Talmud can not be enforced unless the Temple on the Mount is restored. The first portion of the paragraph seems like an effort to appear receptive for something that will likely never come to pass.
Fourth Paragraph: I personally feel that the fifty-or-so-year Zionist conspiracy to establish (forgive me) a Yiddish theme park - which cost the lives of half the Jewish people on this planet at the hands of Hitler and Stalin - can hardly be deemed brillant. In my opinion, America has proven to be a better homeland for the Jewish people - for which I offer my thanks to Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala).
Maybe the jews will need to drive all Palestinians into Gaza and Egypt and Iran and Syria before they can have peace.
Arabs are the worst fighters the modern world has seen. The battle is not in their hearts. Except for a few psychos they don't seem to believe in their battle, and justly so. They realise the jews were there first and the jews have won every war against all odds. I think most Palestinians would truthfully rather live in a jewish state than a Islamic theocracy.
But since I want to be like Jesus I would not take up arms personally against the evil Islamic desires and they would kill me as some say the jews killed Jesus.
In Islam there is no racism. However, our brothers in the Gulf States seem to think that they are better than other Muslims. Keep the faith strong brother. Asalam Alakum
I cant help but read every article that bears your name. Your eloquent words & solid analysis are outstanding. I would like to read you book Poverty from the wealth of nations & I will do my best to find it in the largest bookstore in Toronto, Canada.
Please keep up the very scholarly style. It's a work for heart!
in deep trouble cause Zionist who are ruling Isreal are ani-muslims and their main aim and objective is to crush all the muslims living in the world. They know that Pakistan is the only powerful state in the muslim world and this is the main reason they want to damage the power of Pakistan.
It is surprizing to know that their are so many jews who donot accept the existance of Isreal.
Why should Pakistan accept it?
For another thing, by attempting to love my enemies, might it not be easier for me to stop hating them - if Allah wills that my enemies become Allah's servants? Do such things never happen?
I also have what I think is a related question. Should I assume that Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) will not take the gain, from that which I have done in Allah's name, and give it to whomever pleases Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala)?
Allah hafiz - wa alaikum assalam wa barakatuhu.
I apologize for my blabbering just felt like pouring my heart out. Good job Islamicity for everything you had done here. Salam
My last 3 posts have for some reason not made it, not sure if iviews is carrying out its own form of censureship, but here goes.
Its interesting that the General managed to stay in power with US backing when he reversed the decision to renationalise Pakistani industries that had been given, sorry sold to the US conglomorates like Enron by the Bhutto clan.
As far as Pakistan 'recognising' Israel, (laugh) there's one for the record books !
I remember reading a speach by one of the early Zionist premiers who stated that the biggest threat to Israel was not the Arabs but rather Pakistan, as far as I can see Israel has not changed that stance, visa vi its military collaboration with India.
I strongly disagree with some of the ignorant comments floating around that this is an Arab v Israel issue. For the love of God, Jerusalem contains the 3rd most holiest site in our religion. Without wanting to diminish the Kashmir issue, or other issues such as Chechnya, I do believe that the Palistine issue is the defining issue for muslims. Think of it as a benchmark if you will.
If 'we' can retake Jerusalem from the so called might of the US, then retaking Kashmir or Chechnya is a stroll in the park.
For some reason, which I suppose goes back to the periods of colonisation, we still to this day have an inferiority complex when we look at the Europeans or Anglo Saxons (whichever term you prefer).
Finally, contrary to what most people think I see absolutely nothing wrong with hating the enemy. Again for some reason we seem to have taken onboard alot of the western judeo christian propoganda of 'love your enemies' !
Islam is meant to be the middle way, i.e. the balanced way. There is nothing wrong with Love your own,hate your enemies and fear no one but God.
Personaly I dont think Mr.Musharraf had any options but to help the Americans to save the county. But this is a never ending discussion.
The fact is:
Israel was, is, and will always be the enemy of Muslims across the globe.
Try to recognize Israel Mr.Musharraf and you will become history.
i also disagree on the introduction made that Pakistan and Egypt..etc. reconized Israel because of $$, in the case of Egypt that was part of a settlement to gain you land back and part of the peace process, i think that the article made it look like mony for a statement which is not deep truth.
Today Pakistan's economy is in deep waters but where our fellow brothers now when this nation needs them? Sadly, filling their bellies with US pay cheques. I do not agree with what Musharraf is doing nor do I condemn him for trying to fix an already lost battle with the US. Its either do what they say or surrender as a 53rd state. Israel has been functioning as a state backed by the big bully regardless of Pakistan's recognition of it's status. Pakistan may be owning the nukes but the remote control lies across the globe.
Instead of writing articles on how miserably a country has failed in living up to the expectations of the global critics maybe one should suggest how to implement a more stable foreign policy without further damaging the already broken economy.
Pakistan was born on the idealogy of Islamic unity and she has proved this claim time and again, whether it is acknowledged or not. IF today the enemy has the sword to her neck, its time to raise the question 'what exactly are we waiting for?'
Personally, I think that Zionists ought to consider getting everyone to agree with them, before they proceed with any major religious construction projects in or around Jerusalem. If a complete agreement by the surrounding community wouldn't be considered an endorsement from the Most High, I am not really sure what other sorts of endorsements a subscriber to Prophecy might be hoping to receive.
Assalamu alaikum (Peace be with you).
If there is a valid reason for exercising freedom-of-the-press (as defined by the U.S. Constitution and related rulings by the U.S. Supreme Court) when doing so would appear contrary to Allah's instructions, I would be grateful to Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) for the opportunity to hear about it. Insha'Allah.
My personal point-of-view is that I ought to be treating everybody exactly as if they were Muslim. This would admittedly appear to be a heavier burden than that prescribed for Muslims by Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala). Masha'Allah. Subhanallah.
We as Muslims, shouldn't have any problem with the Jews for amongst them are people are Ury Avnery or Amira Has and countless others who refused to serve in the occupied territories for they knew that the occupation is illegal and unethical. Such people needs to be patronised and human face of Muslims should also be shown to the citizens of Israel. I for one, am all for establishing diplomatic ties like done by Egypt and Qatar and India and Morocco but the difference is, such ties shouldn't be at the expence of their own population in Pakistan and Musharraf should give way to full fledge democracy in the coming 3-4 years.
None of the Islamic countries so far have any credible system for citizens to voice their own opinions in public without the threat of state censorship or retribution. Israeli atrocities thrive because of this one factor missing from the Muslim World.
Musharraf till now has at least given Pakistanic the rght of free speech. pakistanis shouldn't misuse it and reflect upon both the pros and cons that might come out of establishing full diplomatic ties with Israel. Only Dialogue and No confrontation can bring any fruitful results in this World. They never have.
For example, for Syria and Iran, the highway to Washington has not come to an end because their route doesn't take them through Israel.
However, for Musharraf, inclined to establish relations with Israel, the journey might be quicker. Many countries have taken that path before and quickly found themselves in the warm arms of America.
Nobody can blame Pakistan, its president or the government for passing through Tel Aviv on the road to Washington.
And this is merely because Palestinians seek normal ties with Israel. No one can be more Palestinian than the Palestinians, and this is what Musharraf is saying to justify his recent move.
Actually Arab states do not seem bothered with Musharraf's comments outlining his new stand, reiterated in every European capital he has visited. This is simply because some Arabs have already normalised relations with Israel, while others are now in the waiting lounge to undertake a similar journey.
So, why should Arabs be surprised by what Musharraf is saying or doing if he perceives it is in his country's interest?
What is sad, however, for Muslims is to witness the end of the age of morals and principles, and the introduction of the era of slogans that signal the death of great ideas of freedom.
These noble principles are being replaced by the agenda of self-interest.
We believe that our countries' interests should be our top priority. We want our countries and peoples to live in peace and with dignity.
But what is sad is that this won't be realised unless we journey along that highway passing through Tel Aviv. And why should we travel through that path to guarantee our countries' interests?
Does anybody care to answer?
Abu Osama Ad-Danimarki
It is about time Pakistan got realistic; even US recognized the existence of Red China, kicked Republic of China from UN and gave its seat to Red China, still maintaining strong military and economic ties with Taiwan. However, it will be rather unfortunate that Pakistan recognizes Israel not because of its own independent policy analysis and its own national interests but under pressure from their economic/political benefactor, US. When is Pakistan going to become a mature and independent state with an independent foreign policy? It is unimportant whether Pakistan recognizes Israel or not; but it is important to have an independent foreign policy and how it comes to make its OWN foreign policy decisions. Ditching Taliban was not an independent decision (though in my opinion a correct decision and should have been taken long before 9/11); helping US after 9/11 was not an independent decision but was done under duress. May be Pakistan loves to become a virtual US colony; and probably she feels that it was a mistake to throw British out in 1947.
DONOT AGREE WITH ANY THING HE DOES. I AM HOWEVER
TROUBLED BY THE DOUBLE STANDARD OF YOUR WEBSITE
VISA-VIS KASHMIR WHERE INDIA IS PRACTICALLY FOLLOWING SIMMILAR OPRESSIVE AND REPRESSIVE MEASURES AND I HAVE NEVER SEEN A SINGLE SENTENCE
DISPLAYED BY YOU. WHAT WOULD YOU CALL IT? HYPOCRICY
Recognizing a terrorist state like Israel is declaration of amoral cowardice.
why we can't have dictatorships. Thank you Mr. Shahid
M. Alam (author of article) to sharing that rage with me.
I cannot believe Musharraf would even think about
such a teasonous act against the palestinian muslims.
Hell with national interest and LOANS!!! If he isn't
competent enough to handle the economy and
government and worried about money and weapons
then get out so another leader can take over who CAN
handle it. Pakistan has enough sources and geniuses
to make our OWN weapons and generate OUR OWN
MONEY. What is making my EYES RED is
AMERICANS AT PAKISTANI TERRITORY MAKING
ARREST ON PAKISTANIS. THAT IS AN ABSOLUTE
MOCKERY OF OUR SOVEREINGHTY. I hope I don't
see Musharraf face to face.
I wish there were more like him and that Muslim countries' rulers take lessons from him.
Pakistan is on it's way to OFFICIALLY becoming the next new slave of the US Congress and White House, alongside Egypt's Hosni Mubarak, the Turkish Parliament, and Jordan's government/Abdullah. Well of course let us not forget the Kingdom of Saud which sold out decades ago to lucrative British and American oil contracts...debt free living and all the wealth they could imagine to build their gigantic expensive cities like Riyadh, even though 60 percent of the people under the Kingdom of Saud are ILLITERATE. Many people can call me anti-US and they do, but the fact that I am born and raised in Canada and I can recognize these truths, not because someone has told me, but b/c the truth of what I have said is just that, the truth.
This is what needs to be done...the Muslims of Pakistan, India, and Bangladesh need to Stand United, or else divided the ppl fall.
It is quite unbelievable that now the Bush Admin. wants help with more troops from other countries only now, since American troops can't handle the 9 months or so that have lapsed in Iraq. HMM...could it be that America wants to station it's own troops somewhere new, while other countries baby-sit for them in Iraq? Only time will tell how stupid Musharraf and his government are...if it's a political matter, then let Pakistan not send troops, it is better if India sends troops if nothing else can be done. Let us be true Muslims and not go on the battlefield to kill each other unless we want to become Kaffirs. Let no Muslim kill another Muslim unjustly. Present day troops in Iraq are there unjustly. Listen to Al-Rabb and his Rasool (SAW),InshAllah