Saturday, June 13, 2009

How Bruce Reidel lost his way

Bruce Reidel started out as a low level operative in the CIA(?). He weasled his way into the Democratic party and some got the ear of Brack Obama. His initial analysis was good. It mimicd the ongoing reviews called by the outgoing Bush Administration which wanted to overhaul its Afghan policy and try to convert defeat into victory. Mr. Reidel however is no expert on Pakistan, and is not familiar with the culture, traditions and history of the republic. His recent rendition of Pakistani history, published in the Wall Street Journal displays a paucity of ideas, and a bankruptcy of vision and a total absence of understanding of the Pakistani ethos. His book has some edges, but one could overlook them because it had kernels of truth which could be tied together in a good bead story.
Mr. Reidel’s initial articles took a somewhat balanced view. He talked about a regional approach, and aptly described the resolution of Afghanistan, tied in to the resolution of Kashmir. He discussed the fact that the root cause of the problems lay in the disenfranchisement of the Kashmiris, and once that problem was solved and Pakistani’s Eastern borders secured, Islamabad would be more emendable to helping the US in the war in Afghanistan. Mr. Reidel also talked about “convincing” the Pakistanis into helping the US and he also discussed a Marshall plan for Pakistan and a the sacrosanct nature of the Durand Line.
Pick a rock, any rock, and you can find “experts” predicting gloom and doom. One wonders how much venom the bigots can spew. Judging by the decibel level of the doomsayers, one can always judge the level of frustration that they face. News about Pakistan is accompanied with the pugilistic doomsayers who come out in droves.
Mr. Reidel’s ”in depth” analysis of the Afghan war however was mostly based upon the writings of an unknown two bit teacher by the name Rashid Ahmed, a 3rd rate professor at an open admisison university of Pakistan which used to be called Islamabd University. In terms of academic standard or admission cireterio the campus on which Mr. Rashid Ahmed works in, the campus is known as a party campus, with dorms full of sixties type of hippies and a woman’s wing which has always been embroiled in scandal and mischief . Mr. Rashid Ahmed wrote what the CIA wanted to read. His book was very well received in the west, and he has now become a celebrity talking about this that and the other as if he is an authority on the Taliban or the Pakhtuns. He is neither. Mr. Ahmed Rashid is a pawn in the hands of Mr. Reidel. the Dollars make him repeat his master’s voice.
Over the past few months things changed. The Afghan review came out. It was pretty much a regurgitation of the old NEI, CIA and DOD reviews. The old policy was sold to the American public as new. Mr. Holbrooke was appointed as an envoy of Afghanistan and Pakistan instead of the original Pakistan and India envoy. After vociferous complaints by Delhi Kashmir was taken off the agenda. “K” may be part of Mr. Holbrooke’s silent agenda but it is not to be mentioned publicly. The Free Trade Agreement between pakistan and the US remains elusive as does the access of Pakistani Textiles to the US market. The ROZ has been placed on queue in the COngress and may appear on the agenda next year. Puny aid of $1.9 Billion is to be awarded to Pakistan, but half o fit will be spent on enhancing US embassies.
In other words the Neocon agenda continues with few nuanced changes.
The CIA has almost always been wrong on predicting major events. It has been a total failure in monitoring real and perceived enemies. Filling Gitmo, renditions and torture are not success stories that should be rewarded.
The CIA has once again come up with policy statements for the new President. In fact the new policy is partly based upon the recommendations of the intelligence agencies.
Selective Amnesia of Americans: Pakistan is the most mistreated friend in the world. The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) is the organization that gave us the fiasco of Bay of Pigs becuase it didn’t have a clue that the Cuban had Russian missiles hidden in their closets. By the time they found out it was too late. The CIA is the same organization that couldn’t predict the simple fact that the USSR was ready to implode, a fact known to almost everyone on the streets of Moscow or Kabul. Justifying the Banality of a brutal Occupation in Iraq and Afghanistan: The Thinktanks attempt to complete the circle of complicity between a sycophantic press, and a non-inquisitive servile public. The nation is forced to accept the only argument that it is being repeatedly inundated with
The truth is out. Mr. Reidel is a bigoted racist who has brought the likes of Mr. Kilcullen to the forefront to wage war on Pakistan. Mr. Reidel’s rancid and hackneyed imperviousness to everything Pakistani blinds him to the large spectrum of vivacious Pakistani diversity, makes him deaf to the varied cacophony of Pakistani ideas, gangly numbs him to the inherently punier societal contradictions of the country, and helps him ignore the profound internal cohesion, so that he can surreptitiously inexerably and single-mindedly negatively highlight the putative and superficial dissonance of a highly complex society. Mr. Reidel can say nothing good about Pakistan. He can thus impugn them with being enmeshed and ensnared in everything that goes wrong with anything. Mr.Reidel has not spent a lot of time in Pakistan. He however claims to be an expert on Paksitan. Textbooks only get you so far. It is pedagogical to investigate the didactic provenance of his cabal and research the incipient truculence of his petulantly portentous and venomously vindictive and revanchist commentariat.
Pakistan cannot be handed the forced foster parentage of failed American policies in South Asia.
A passionate attachment of one nation for another produces a variety of evils. Sympathy for the favorite nation facilitates the illusion of an imaginary common interest in cases where no real common interest exists, infuses into one the enmities of the other, and betrays the former into participation in the quarrels and wars of the latter without adequate inducement or justification.” (George Washington, Farewell Address, 1796)
Mr. Reidel’s recent article in the Wall Street Journal was a new nadir of his incompetence. That article and the compendium of his flummoxed ad hominem trope has serious errors in it, which is typical of the odiously conflated half-baked harebrained doctrinal tripe so pervasive in the open hunting season on Pakistan these days. Mr. Reidel is wrong, totally wrong on Pakistan.
The “Firm” participated in the Mossedegh snafu in which they an elected and popular prime minister and installed Reza Shah as emperor. The CIA is the same organization that didn’t have a clue about the popularity of Imam Khomeni and ’till the last moment continued to support the Shah of Iran. “The Company” is the same spy agency that tried to buy arms from Iran to fund the Contras in Nicragua. The CIA was unable to predict the USSR’s invasion of Afghanstan and it took them two years to join the Pakistanis in their war against the Communist invaders.
Mr. Reidel–stop this nonsense!
here are a few new players who have jumped on the Anti-Pakistan bandwagon. The Darth Vader plenipotentiary of the Neocons is the Australian Rupert Mrudock. The Neocon agenda was to implement the Plan for a New American Century (PNAC). This plan called for maintaining the supremacy of the US through violent conflict if needed. According to PNACers the destruction of the USSR accorded an opportunity to trample over smaller nations in order to encircle any future threats to America. Hence the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The bad wars, sheer incompetence of the executers, and the stiff resistance given to the invaders brought many American policy holders to their sense. It is very consternating and most disappointing that the phlegmatic doyens and placid cognoscenti of the Obama Administration lacked the imperious intellect to reject this compendium of insipid depredation, and chose to egregiously reproduce the vapid pabulum and rambling crypto-racist putrid screed written by this doltish and vindictive votary of prurient scurrility.
The puerile headlines in the Hate-Pakistan press remind me of the old schoolyard song. “Sticks and stones may break my bones but words shall never harm me“. The risible rhetoric is amazing in its transparent bias and mind boggling in its obeisance to the Gods of mendacity. Congressman Denis Kucinich once remarked that “the American press is worse than Izvestia and Pravda” in kowtowing to the government line.
The misanthropic media has almost become an organ of the state and is used by the military to disseminate misinformation and outright lies. Headlines are added at the discretion of the editor. Many times the headlines are totally disconnected from the actual essay. Even the paragons of the left wing media like the New York Times were used like a fiddle to play the swan song of the WMDs. The list is long. The childish name calling is not limited to the New York Times Company. The juvenile vacuous, vapid chatter is as ubiquitous now as it was in the war mongering days that fueled the frenzy to attack Iraq. The New York Times apologized, but continues its venomous diatribes against Pakistan.
This polemicist’s troglodyte’s pauperized intellect, vacuity of ideas and teutonic bloviations are a prosaic and trite admixture of the clichéd and discredited Neocon assertions, unsubstantiated and facile aspersions, outright augean distortion, and pure unadulterated balderdash. Mr. Reidel has been caught “in flagrante delicto” with his pants down. His penchant for a revivified virulence of the macabre and ghoulishly political vaudeville shows a total lack of knowledge of South Asia and only a peripheral knowledge of Pakistan and Pakistanis.
The headlines use the worst words that they can find, despair, peril, dangerous, failed, disarray, implode, explode etc etc. Some Pakistanis worry about the use of the words. The real reason for the frustration is fear. They fear failure in the Hindu Kush. they are scared of getting thrown out of the Khyber, and they are frustrated by the lack of success in the Indus. All the huffing and the puffing has not enabled them to blow away the house.

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