CNN blogs came up with an article on December 13 2012 predicting the future with respect to Pakistan within the upcoming year. Though the blog had also highlighted predictions and analysis of other countries – the most bizarre that caught my eye was the one “Pakistan in 2013: Yes, it could get worse”. The reason that it got my attention was firstly because I was a Pakistani and secondly it was featured on renowned Fareed Zakaria’s Global Public Square page. Well, who is Fareed Zakaria? We will get to that in a bit hence it would be better if we could get a summarized extract of the blog as to what it had to state.
The noticing point over which the blog kick-started was to reveal the findings of a four years old study which claimed the prediction of a nuclear or biological attack by the end of 2013 – with a high likelihood that it would originate in Pakistan. This claim was further constituted with other unrest news prevailing within the country in order to give a resolute attestation to the research’s findings. Hence to fully comprehend the claim and consider the article an independent and integral one, I carried out a bit of my own research.
To initiate, I looked up the profile of Mr. Fareed Zakaria and found few interesting facts and claims about the Indian-American journalist. Zakaria has hugely been affiliated with biased claims about Pakistan which clearly point somewhat towards a personal grudge of his against Pakistan. According to former Pakistani ambassador to the UK, Akbar Ahmed, whom the BBC terms as “the world’s leading authority on contemporary Islam,” Zakaria’s reporting on Islam and Pakistan is “biased and historically incorrect”. Now what further complements this claim is Zakaria’s personal achievement of being suspended as CNN’s host and Time Editor when he was found guilty of plagiarizing content from an America magazine “The New Yoker“.
The rectitude of Zakaria was clearly evident from the plagiarized piece that he had written and it would certainly help in understanding the integrity of his reporting.
Getting back to the article, the main issue that was accentuated within it stated that terrorists may obtain a nuclear or biological weapon and use that to carry out the attack originating from within Pakistan. Now the article which quoted this was actually posted 4 years ago in various newspapers with strong hunches over using the latter destructive weapon i.e. the biological one.
What really is interesting is the fact that Pakistan does not have any biological weapons within its arsenal, though they have the ability to produce such weapons, they have not done that as yet. According to Arms Control Association’s report – updated in September 2012, there are no substantial allegations against the country and that no information suggested “that any agent and toxin research activities by Pakistani entities were inconsistent with Pakistan’s Biological Weapons Convention (BWC) obligations.”
BWC is a United Nations governed organization with the primary role of effectively “prohibiting the development, production, acquisition, transfer, retention, stockpiling and use of biological and toxin weapons and is a key element in the international community’s efforts to address the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.”
Now since BWC, which is a globally accredited organization, has no allegations against Pakistan – maybe it is Mr. Zakaria’s love for Pakistan that has led him to cite that Pakistan is owning some biological weapons – which would later be acquired by terrorists to launch an attack against the USA.
The other issue which I put under the limelight was USA’s growing concern over the security of Pakistan’s nuclear weapons and their fear that it may fall into the wrong hands. USA has reiterated their anxiety over this nuclear weapon proliferation issue but it seems real ironical when you witness the history of the worried nation itself. USA has been an important ally to Israel and has long provided the latter nation with the desired Uranium to produce nuclear weapons via clandestine means – “The Apollo Affair”.
Israel, on the other hand, has repudiated the claims but remains silent over its nuclear status even though CIA had affirmed Israel’s nuclear weapons acquisition.
Now when the issue had been ratified by USA’s leading intelligence agency, why isn’t Israel in the first place asked to give upon their nuclear assets as it is hugely believed that a peaceful resolution within the Middle-East region would not be possible if Isreal gives up their nuclear weapons and join the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.
I guess peace within the Middle East region is not on US’s priority list rather their focus is more towards terrorists acquiring nuclear assets which have not done so as yet.
The original article predicting the nuclear attack in 2013 displays its lack of ingenuity when it asserts that terrorists would obtain nuclear materials from within Pakistan as it would be their last resort and that there were no other options remaining for them to acquire the weapons of mass-destruction. According to a 2012 Associated Press article, proliferation of nuclear material is very much active within the World around the former Soviet Union region through a black market and it can be optimally used by terrorists. The point of stating this is that when such options are available than why solely place the burden over Pakistan and classify it as the launching pad of the attack.
The basic idea which can be inferred from this article is that Mr. Zakaria is using such bigoted articles to level personal vendetta against Pakistan and further destabilize the image of the nation which is already struck by a series of dreadful events over the years. Such articles certainly endorse that Pakistan’s longstanding role in the war on terror has been nugatory and that Pakistan as a nation would always be seen as a promoter of violence.
Story first published: 14th December 2012