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because other empires wanted the empire inside afghanistan to fail and supported afghans BY AGHA.H.AMIN
empires failed in afghanistan not because of afghanistan itself but because other empires wanted the empire inside afghanistan to fail and supported afghans http://www.scribd.com/doc/95011923/A-Lot-of-Assorted-Nonsense-AboutAfghanistan-From-Eric-Margolis
A LOT OF NONSENSE ABOUT AFGHANISTAN FROM MARGOLIS
A LOT OF ASSORTED NONSENSE ABOUT AFGHANISTAN FROM ERIC MARGOLIS ANALYSIS BY MAJOR AGHA H AMIN (RETIRED)
COMMENTS BY MAJOR AGHA H AMIN (RETIRED) IN BOLD BLACK WITH HIGHLIGHTED COLOUR
FACING THE WRITING ON THE WALL IN KABUL
by Eric Margolis 26 May 2012 One of my favorite artists was the superb Victorian painter Lady Jane Butler who captured in oil the triumphs and tragedies of the British Empire. Her haunting painting, "The Retreat from Kabul, " shows the sole survivor of a British army of 16,500, Dr. William Brydon, struggling out of Afghanistan in January, 1842. All the rest were killed by Afghan tribesmen after a futile attempt to garrison Kabul.
THIS WHOLE ARGUMENT IS B____LL S____T AND A ROMANTICISED VERSION OF HISTORY.WHAT REALLY HAPPENED WAS THAT A BRIGADE SIZE MUCH FAMISHED COLUMN OF 700 BRITISH TROOPS FROM HM 44 FOOT AND SOME 4500 NATIVE INDIAN TROOPS RETREATING FROM KABUL TO JALALABAD IN HEAVY SNOWFALL WAS HARASSED AND DESTROYED BY MORE THAN 30,000 AFGHANS.THE STORY DID NOT END HERE.BRITISH COMMANDERS NOTT AND POLLOCK ON THEIR OWN JUDGEMENT RECAPTURED KABUL AFTER THIS INCIDENT , BURNT IT AND WITHDREW IN GOOD MILITARY ORDER BACK TO INDIA.A DOCILE AND BRITISH VASSAL KING DOST MOHAMMAD KHAN WAS PLACED ON THE THRONE IN KABUL.
THIS KING COOPERATED WITH BRITISH IN 1857 INDIAN REBELLION AT A LOW COST OF 13 LAKHS PER YEAR .AFGHANISTAN BECAME A BRITISH VASSAL IN FOREIGN POLICY TILL 1919 AND AGREED TO ONLY HAVE A BRITISH EMBASSY IN KABUL.ALL AT A LOW COST OF 13 LAKHS PER YEAR.MY DETAILED ARGUMENTS TO TRASH THIS B____LL S____T THEORY OF GRAVEYARD OF EMPIRES IS APPENDED AT THE END OF THIS REJOINDER
This gripping painting should have hung over the NATO summit meeting last week in Chicago to remind the US and its allies that Afghanistan remains "the graveyard of empires."
THIS IS NOT ABOUT GRAVEYARD OF EMPIRES.AFGHANISTAN WAS NEVER A GRAVEYARD OF EMPIRES.IN MID SIXTEENTH CENTURY IT HAD A MUGHAL HINDU GOVERNOR WHOSE ONLY WEAPON WAS A WALKING STEP.TILL 1747 AFGHANISTAN WAS RULED BY VARIOUS TURKIC TRIBES OR PARTLY BY MUGHAL INDIA AND SAFFAVID IRAN. The latest empire to try to conquer Afghanistan has failed, and is now sounding the retreat.
THE LATEST INVASION IS A GEOPOLITICAL STRATEGIC MANOEUVRE THAT THE NATO LED BY US HAS LAUNCHED TO DOMINATE THE STRATEGIC HEARTLAND OF WEST ASIA.NATURALLY THE ANTI US INSURGENTS ARE GETTING AID FROM PAKISTAN , CHINA , RUSSIA AND MANY NON STATE MUSLIM PHILANTHROPIST BILLIONAIRES.NORTH AFGHANISTAN BY AND LARGE SEES NATO AS A SAVIOUR FROM TALIBAN WHO REGARD TAJIKS , UZBEKS,BALOCH , SHIAS,ISMAILIS,EDUCATED PASHTUNS AS INFIDELS AND WOULD MASSACRE THEM All the hot air in Chicago about "transition," Afghan self-reliance, and growing security could not conceal the truth that the mighty US and its dragooned western allies have been beaten in Afghanistan by a bunch of mountain warriors from the 12th Century.
THE US FAILURE HAS BEEN TO PLAN A PHASE THREE AND THIS NEEDS A DYNAMIC PLAN. COMPLETE WITHDRAWAL FROM AFGHANISTAN IS NOT THE RIGHT SOLUTION
SEE THE ANALYSIS BELOW FOR OPTIONS
The objective of war is to achieve political goals, not kill people. The US goal was to turn Afghanistan into a protectorate providing
bases close to Caspian Basin oil, and to block China. After an eleven-year war costing $1 trillion, this effort failed – meaning a military and political defeat.
THERE NEVER WAS ANY MORALITY IN STRATEGY AND GEOPOLITICS.SO THE US OBJECTIVE OF WAR IS LOGICAL . MORAL OR IMMORAL . THAT IS SENTIMENTAL B___L SH___T.MORALITY NEVER EXISTED IN WORLD HISTORY.BE IT ANY RACE OR RELIGION The US dragged NATO into a war in which it had no business and lacked any popular support. The result: a serious weakening of the NATO alliance, raising questions about whose interests it really serves. The defeat in Afghanistan will undermine US domination of Western Europe. Claims made in Chicago that the US-installed Afghan regime will stand on its own with $4 billion of aid from the west were pie in the sky. Once US support ends, the Karzai regime is unlikely to survive much longer than did Najibullah's Afghan Communist regime in Kabul after its Soviet sponsor withdrew in 1989. Or the US-run South Vietnamese regime that fell in 1975.
THE THREE STATE SOLUTION IN AFGHANISTAN WITH NATO IN AERIAL SUPPORT CAN CHECK THE TALIBAN.THE ENGLISH EAST INDIA COMPANY DID IT WITH ONLY 13 LAKH RUPEES IN 1857 ! THE AFGHAN KING DOST MOHAMMAD KHAN WAS SUCH A DISGRACE THAT HE GOT HIS SON WAZEER AKBAR KHAN THE AFGHAN HERO OF FIRST AFGHAN WAR POISONED BECAUSE WAZEER AKBAR KHAN WAS ANTI BRITISH AND THUS A THREAT TO DOST MOHAMMADS 13 LAKHS ALLOWANCE TO ACT AS THE ENGLISH EAST INDIA COMPANYS STRATEGIC PI____P IN AFGHANISTAN
FOR POISONING OF WAZEER AKBAR KHAN SEE QASIM RESHTIAS BOOK AFGHANISTAN BETWEEN EMPIRES
The current 350,000-man Afghan government army and police are mercenaries fighting for money supplied by the US and NATO. Many are ethnic Uzbeks and Tajiks, blood foes of the majority Pashtun. Taliban and its allies are fighting for nationalism and faith. History tells us who will prevail.
THE AFGHAN NATIONAL ARMY AND POLICE WHOSE NUCLEUS ARE THE LEFTISTS CAN GAIN MILITARY VIRTUE AS DEFINED BY CARL VON CLAUSEWITZ BUT THAT NEEDS SOME YEARS.NOTHING WAS INEVITABLE IN HISTORY AND THIS INCLUDES THE IMAGINED TRIUMPH OF TALIBAN ! All Afghans know the western powers have been defeated. Those with
sense are already making deals with Taliban. Vengeance being a cherished Afghan custom, those who collaborated closely with the foreign forces can expect little mercy. Air power is the key to US control of Afghanistan. Warplanes and helicopter gunships circle constantly overhead to defend western bases and supply routes. Reduce this air power, as will likely happen after 2014, and remaining US troops will be in peril. Pakistan's temporary closure of NATO land supply routes to Kabul and Kandahar provides a foretoken of what may occur. Currently, the US must rely on Russia for much of its heavy supplies. Already there are worries about getting US and NATO troops out of Afghanistan. France's new president, Francoise Hollande, wisely reaffirmed his pledge to withdraw all French troops this year. Other NATO members are wishing they could do the same. No one wants to have their soldiers be the last to die in a futile war that everyone knows is lost. To wage and sustain the Afghan War, the US has been forced to virtually occupy Pakistan, bribe its high officials, and force Islamabad to follow policies hated by 95% of its people, generating virulent anti-Americanism. The Afghan War must be ended before it tears apart Pakistan and plunges South Asia into crisis into which nuclear-armed India is likely to become involved. Washington intends to leave garrisons in Afghanistan after the 2014 announced pullout date, rebranding them "trainers" instead of combat troops. Their mission will be to keep the pro-US Afghan regime in power. But neither the US nor NATO will come up with the $4 billion promised in Chicago. Washington is encouraging India to get ever more deeply involved in Afghanistan – even to become its new colonial power. India would be wise to keep its hands off.
In a second "Retreat from Kabul," remaining US garrisons in Afghanistan may face the fate of the 1842 British invaders, cut off, ambushed, and hacked to pieces by the ferocious Pashtun tribesmen. 30 Copyright Eric S. Margolis 2012
Myth of English East India Companys Failure in First Afghan War
BY MAJOR AGHA H AMIN (RETIR
Ranjeet Singh was the real architect of English East India Companys failures and reverses in Afghanistan once he forced them to follow the much longer and logistically impossible route of attack via Sindh and Balochistan. English East India Companys failures in Afghanistan were highly exaggerated although the force which was destroyed by Afghans at Gandamak was a heavily outnumbered force of 700 British malnourished soldiers and some 4500 malnourished Indians. Agha H Amin
Afghanistan-Myth and Reality
Sepoy Perceptions about EEIC Military Effectiveness Agha.H.Amin
The Bengal Army was the brain child of Lord Clive's military
genius. The Bengal sepoys related to each other by blood
relationship and caste bonds had served the EEIC for some 100 years when they rebelled in 1857. These men had a very close contact with the British and had observed them from very close quarters. Any neutral and unbiased account of the events of 1857 clearly proves that the Britisher as an officer was never disliked by the sepoys. As an officer who served in Pakistan Army I can state with conviction that the British provided excellent leadership to the Indians. They definitely knew how to lead and inspire the Indian, leading them from the forefront which I am afraid few of at least our native post 1947. Generals did either in Burma or in 1965 or in 1971. The sepoy admired and revered the British officer. In 1857 he was rebelling against the system instituted by the EEIC. Against policies formulated by men constituting a board of directors in far off England. The greasing of cartridges with pig or cow fat similarly was also an administrative decision. The sepoy perceived the British officer as a fair and brave leader and many British officers reciprocated these feelings. One of the British commanding officer committed suicide when his native infantry regiment was disbanded. Many others resisted disbandment of their units. One troop of 3rd Light Cavalry the most crucial unit of Bengal Army Sepoys as a matter of fact loyally fought for the British in 1857. It appears, however, that sepoy perceptions about EEIC military effectiveness changed from absolute faith in the invincibility of the EEIC as a military machine to skepticism from 1804 to 1857. Before we proceed further we must state that the first major reverse or defeat which the EEIC suffered in India was in 1780 at the hands of Hyder Ali and Tipu Sultan who were heading forces whose fighting Hector Munro and Baillie in 1780
were defeated in a manner which was described by Fortes Cue the official historian of the British army in the following words, "The blunders had been flagrant and from a military point of view, Munro must be held solely responsible for one of the greatest calamities that has ever befallen the British arms"469. But this happened with the Madras Army. The Bengal Army sepoy realized for the first time in 1804 that the that EEIC was not invincible. This happened while dealing with the Mahrattas and not the Afghans who came much later. In 1804 five battalions of sepoys and about 3000 irregular horse left by the C in C Bengal Army Lord Lake to keep the Mahratta Holkar in check under the command of Colonel Monsoon were forced to make a disastrous retreat from Central India to Agra470. The results of this reverse were short term since Lord Lake immediately assumed personal command and defeated the Mahrattas. However, the harm had been done and the myth of invincibility of the EEIC as far as the Bengal Army was concerned was challenged for the first time. Monsoon's retreat was followed by a much more serious reverse which for many years shattered the EEIC myth of invincibility. This happened at Bhurtpore, the Hindu Jat fortress which is the only fort in British Indian history which a British army in India failed in a siege to capture. Leading the EEIC army in this case was a man of no less a stature than Lord Lake who had previously captured Delhi and destroyed Mahratta power in North India in battle of Laswari. (It must be remembered that Panipat - 1761 checked the Mahrattas, but this was temporary since within few years they recaptured Delhi. It was at Laswari on 01 Nov. 1803 that one European infantry regiment and a couple of Bengal Army
Regiments composed of roughly 3/4 Hindu soldiers and 1/4 Hindustani Muslims destroyed the Mahratta Army) 471. In 1805 Lake failed to capture Bhurtpore. He made a first assault in January 1805 but failed to capture the fort. The British troops became so demoralised that the three European regiments i.e. HM 75 Foot, HM 76 Foot and the 1st Bengal Europeans refused orders to attack and withdrew 472! Almost a thousand casualties were suffered but repeated British assaults were repulsed. At last on 24 February Lord Lake withdrew his army from Bhurtpore. Subsequently, the Hindu Jat Raja sued for peace in 1805 due to reasons of political expediency; but the fact remained that militarily this Hindu Jat Raja had not been defeated! The EEIC never forgot this defeat and later on they did capture Bhurtpore but this was much later i.e. on 18 January 1826. The force used at Bhurtpore this time was larger than the one the EEIC used to recapture Kabul in September 1842473 in the first Afghan War. Another reverse which the EEIC suffered was in the Nepal war of 1814-16. Here their initial advance into Nepal was repulsed. Nepal was subsequently defeated using the Bengal Sepoys but again the harm had been done. The sepoy's confidence in the British officer was a little shaken. The EEIC retreat from Kabul to Jalalabad in the first Afghan war was not a big disaster keeping in view the numbers involved. There were only 700 Europeans in some 5000 troops in the weak and Stan brigade which withdrew from Kabul in January 1842 and which was destroyed by an overwhelming force of some 30,000 Afghans taking advantage of harsh weather and shortage of food in this EEIC force. The EEIC troops largely composed of Bengal sepoys did subsequently recapture Kabul in September
1842. But the human mind is not a computer and the net significant impression produced on the sepoy was that the EEIC had been forced to retreat. The extremely tough resistance of the valiant Sikhs in the First and Second Sikh wars again produced a strong impression on the mind of the Bengal Army Sepoy. At Mudki the main British army survived just because the Sikh general Taj Singh did not attack them,474a otherwise their destruction was certain. This was a battle fought on absolutely plain land, unlike Afghanistan where the Afghans bravery had a deep connection with adverse mountainous terrain. The impressions of the Sikh wars were the deepest in convincing the sepoys that the British were not invincible. In Afghanistan the mountains, the adverse weather and the small numbers were an excuse; but at Chillianwala everything favoured the British and yet they failed! All these disasters from 1804 till 1849 certainly had an influence on the mind of the Bengal sepoy and reinforced his decision to rebel in 1857. The sepoys felt in 1857 that they could meet the Europeans on the battlefield as an equal. Their perceptions were however erroneous in one area. This was about realising that the principals force multiplier of sepoy efficiency was superior leadership of the British officer. Without British leadership the military effectiveness of the sepoy reduced by some 75%. Since the British suppressed the initial rebellions in Punjab they were able to use Punjab and Frontier's manpower to create new regiments or in using comparatively new regiments raised in 1846-49 which were used with as much effect at Delhi as the Bengal sepoy units at Kabul or Ghazni or at Gujrat. The British officer of 1857 was the greatest force
multiplier of military effectiveness by virtue of leadership which was far superior to be "Rebel" leadership in terms of "Resolution" "Tactical Efficiency" reinforced by an iron frame administrative organisation created by the EEIC during its 100 year rule in India and its eight year old rule in the Punjab. Lack of Foreign Intervention It has been said that "French" intervention in support of the American rebels during the American war of Independence played an important role in the success of the Americans against the British. The French navy played a decisive role in blocking British reinforcements and in movement of British ships from one part of America to the other. Similarly, in 1971 the Indian intervention played an important role in the otherwise just and righteous struggle of the Bengalis against West Pakistan oppression. The Vietnamese may not have succeeded the way they did against USA, had the Chinese and USSR not helped them the way they did. Similarly the Afghans against USSR may not have been so successful had the USA not aided them. The foreign intervention factor plays an important role in the success of a rebellion. In 1857 no such thing happened. Afghanistan was the only country which could have made the rebellion a success by invading India. But we must remember that contrary to the prevalent myth about Afghan invincibility, these gentlemen had been so severely mauled by the EEIC in September 1842 that they did not dare to attack the EEIC in 1857, which as a matter of fact was a golden opportunity for them to attack India. The EEIC was at its lowest ebb and the Governor General of India and the Chief Commissioner of Punjab were seriously contemplating about surrendering all area upto
river Indus to Afghanistan. In June - July 1857 John Lawrence the EEIC Chief Commissioner of Punjab (including present N.W.F.P.) had become so demoralised due to the siege of Delhi that he had informed Edward's the Commissioner of Peshawar that due to fear about security and survival of the British army at Delhi he was thinking about sending all British troops in Peshawar valley to Delhi and to invite the ruler of Afghanistan Dost Muhammad Khan to occupy the Peshawar valley upto the Indus on the understanding that if he proved faithful (which he certainly was!), the Peshawar valley would be ceded to him in perpetuity474. But Dost Muhammad was happier with the money EEIC was giving him every year. Secondly, Edward's the EEIC man at Peshawar was a man of immense resolution. Edwardes declared that rather than obeying such a defeatist order to abandon Peshawar "he would feel bound by conscience to resign and explain his reason to the government"475. Lord Canning the Governor General to whom Lawrence had requested for clearance regarding the proposal to cede Peshawar also realised that psychologically and politically such an action would be fatal since it would be perceived in NWFP and in Afghanistan as a withdrawal and defeat on the EEIC part. Canning therefore, decided in favour of Edwardes. Edwardes was right in understanding the true worth of Dost Muhammad Khan the so called "Amir of Afghanistan"! Dost Muhammad Khan's price was an annual subsidy of 12 lakh or 1.2 million Indian rupees per year 476! Just look at the difference in perceptions. The thoroughbred Britisher, the man who saved the Punjab in 1857 is thinking big. He thinks that "Dost Muhammad" the King of Afghanistan, the ruler of a proud race which became
independent only in 1722 will accept nothing less than Peshawar valley from Khyber till Indus! Edward is a better judge, he beautifully appreciates that 12 lakh an year will do. Was there any difference between Bahadur Shah Zafar who was drawing a similar allowance as Dost Muhammad of Afghanistan? It was Afghan loyalty which saved India for the British more than Punjab or NWFP loyalty! I give full marks to he EEIC General Pollock who in 1842 on his own initiative decided to capture and burn Kabul, despite contrary orders from Ellenborough the Viceroy of India477. Thus on his orders Kabul was captured and burnt on September 1842. This was a good job since it was this severe mauling received in 1842 which most probably restrained Dost Muhammad from attacking India. Afghanistan thus lost probably the last chance to regain Peshawar! Thus we find our brave Muslim Afghan neighbours concluding an offensive defensive treaty with the EEIC while the Hindu Raja of Ballabghar and the Mahratta Tantia Topi were fighting alongside their Muslim Bengal Army Sepoys! Just Rs. 12 lakh per year, cheap isn't it! Thus Canning telegraphed Lawrence478:"Hold on to Peshawar. give upon nothing" Money makes the mare go! The Khilafat Leaders of 1918-23 had not read the history of Afghans and thus naively hoped that the Afghans would invade India! The Afghans lost a golden opportunity of attacking British India during the First World War once the pure white troops holding India were as following479: a. b. c. Eight Infantry Battalions Thirteen Batteries of Artillery Two Cavalry Regiments
A total of some just 15,000 troops! Foolishly the Afghans did attack India in 1919 when a new king came into power and were quickly pushed back by the British Indian forces who were back to the pre war strength.
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
EVERYTHING IS NOT BLACK AND WHITE OR RED OR BLUE;
THERE ARE SHADES IN BETWEEN TOO ! PAN ISLAMISM CHECHEN QUESTION ETC. Sir , I have seen a large number of articles about Pan Islamic themes in various issues of DJ . I was however propelled to write this letter once I saw a letter by a reader chiding Iran with lethargy and indifference about Chechen Muslims ! I share the writers concern about the plight of Chechens but feel with considerable conviction that ignorance of history and extreme fervour has induced the writer to make some sweeping statements. This is no fault of the author but a common occurrence in Pakistan where a lot of lip service is paid to abstract concepts of Pan Islamism etc; while many ground realities are ignored. In addition history is not taught in a manner in schools or colleges which may enable a future adult to have a broader perspective of events. The fault lies in our educational system! Take Ahmad Shah Abdali for example. The man was a soldier of fortune who looted the Muslims of Delhi and Punjab indiscriminately but later was extolled by Iqbal as a great Muslim hero . Read Waris Shah and other Punjabi Muslim poets of 18th century Punjab and you find out that this Abdali was the worst kind of looter ! Take Aurangzeb again eulogised by Iqbal as a Muslim hero .The fact is that the man alienated all communities in India. He chastised the Pathans alienating them by punitive expeditions against tribes, making the Yusufzai fight the Khattak as a result of which Pathans stopped joining the Mughal Army at a time when the Mughals needed them the most in the Maratha insurgency (Refers pages-239 & 240-Cambridge History of IndiaVolume Four). The same Aurangzeb was more keen to destroy the southern Muslim Shia kingdoms as a result of which the Mughals subsequently got involved in the Maratha war which became the Mughals Spanish Ulcer and the principal reason of decline and fall of the Mughal Empire! By removing the Shia Kingdoms Aurangzeb got inextricably involved with the Marathas who inhabited the area of the Shia Kingdoms . These Marathas found Aurangzeb's Sunni fanaticism intolerable and waged a brilliant guerrilla war under Sivaji which laid a blue print of a guerrilla war imitated or re practised much later in Spain against Napoleon , in Vietnam against USA and much later in Afghanistan .In all cases guerrilla forces triumphed over conventional forces; whether guerrillas were Marataha Hindu , Catholic Spanish , Communist Atheist Vietnamese or Muslim Pathan or Tajik .Today these Pan Islamists think that it was triumph of Islam over Communism ! A typical case of Pan Islamic confusion! To come back to the point the problem with Pan Islamism is that many realities of history are ignored once Pan Islamists talk about Islam at an international level. Geography, ethnicity and historical background are ignored by Pan Islamists . Take Iran's case as an example . Iran is a Shia Muslim national state. It has defied USA successfully since 1979 more successfully than any other modern Muslim state without selling national honour as done by Pakistani governments since 1950 or by blundering into a trap like Kuwait War in case of Iraq! It is prosperous cohesive and has clear national goals. Now take Iran in relation to its neighbours. On one side is Turkey . An Islamic state if this confused label can be applied to a state which has a defence pact with Israel . Turkey has historically tried to dismember or damage Iran and the same is true for Iran's attitude with Turkey ! In 1724 Turkey concluded an agreement with Tsarist Christian Russia to dismember and divide
Muslim Iran ! (Refers-page-237 to page-238-History of Persia-Volume Two-Brigadier General Percy Sykes-London-Macmillan and Company Limited-Saint Martin's Press-New York-1958) . Turkish Iranian rivalry which was a natural result of the fact that the two states were different ethnically and dynastically weakened both and played a major role in ensuring that Ottoman Turkey's forces were divided between Europe and Asia. Iran also remained weak since it was engaged in a series of wars with Turkey from the sixteenth to the 19th century . Pan Islamists may cite this as a case of Islamic disunity but that is absurd ! The same was true for Christian France allying with Muslim Turkey against Christian Austria or France allying with Muslim ruled Mysore against English East India Company. Religion, alas despite all lip service to the idea remains a weak basis for statehood barring Pakistan and Israel with European Jews dominating Israel and Punjabi Muslims dominating Pakistan after having finally sucessfully getting rid of the Muslim majority province of East Bengal ! Even the first Muslim state which in reality was an Arab dominated state was basically a family affair; the first four caliphs being from Quraish and later the the Bannu Ummaya fighting the Ali-ides or the Banni Abbas fighting the Banni Ummaya. If the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) wanted he would have left clear guidelines ; about his successor; another legal issue which divides Muslims! History of Islam was in reality the history of Arab Muslims with all power concentrated in the hands of one clan ; a total negation of the concept of democracy as practised by the Holy Prophet ! The Arab dynasties were followed by Turkish Berber Fatimid dynasties all conveniently employing religion as a tool ; an opium to drug the masses ! The Ottoman Empire was a tyranny as far as the Arab Muslims was concerned;Muslim in name Turk in reality !The Mughals were Muslims in name following the policy of divide and rule using Hindu Generals against Pathan Muslims or Hindu Rajput generals against Maratha Hindus ! This was not a negation of Pan Islamism . Islam was good as a slogan but the Mughals had to deal with a larger number of non Muslims. The Pakistan idea emerged only after the Muslims feared persecution from a Hindu majority. But even religion failed once the Bengali Muslims felt that they were being fooled in the name of Islam by the West Pakistani ruling elite ! The Punjabi Muslim politicians raised the slogan of parity to safeguard West Pakistani/Punjabi Muslim interests against possible Bengali Muslim domination ! Exactly in the same manner as done by the Muslim League to escape Hindu majority's domination ! Now we have PONAM BNM ANP MQM STTP etc. The reason is not that these are traitors but because ethnicity is also important . Mere religion is no panacea of all evils ! If it was not so there would be no quota system! Pan Islamism was picked up by Jamal Afghani in second half of 19th century . It's a good slogan but overlooks certain concrete historical facts . How could for example Indian Muslims support Egyptian Muslims once Alexandria was bombarded in 1882 or once the British fought the Second Afghan War in 1878-80 . The Egyptians had no link with India apart from a common religion ! The Afghans had systematically looted Indian Muslims independently or as mercenaries of Persia from 1739 to 1799 ! Ahmad Shah Abdali warned the Muslim Pathans of Rohailkhand and Upper Doab to be more careful with Shia Oudh than against Marathas ! About 13 years later Shia Muslim Oudh hired a British East India Company brigade to destroy Pathan Muslim Rohailkhand ! Sir Syed Ahmad Khan rightly advised the Indian Muslims not to think the Turkish Khalifa as Khalifa of India ! The Arabs knew much better about the Turk's Islamic fervour ! The British were the de facto rulers of India ! The fact was forgotten by the Indian Muslims much later and the Khilafat movement however heroic damaged the cause of
Indian Muslims. The Turks under Kemal the 'Grey Wolf' of Anatolia proved wiser and kicked out the ridiculous Khalifa ! Now to come back to Iran :- (1) How could Iran sell out to the Russians in 1979 when it was itself in the middle of a traumatic revolution and confronting USA which the Pakistani leadership since 1951 has shamelessly wooed, only be kicked once Pakistan needed crucial US help in 1965 and 1971! Zia on the other hand sold Pakistan to the US once the Russians occupied Afghanistan in order to preserve his seat! The military regime was isolated internally as well as externally! Internally, it had reneged on a promise of elections within 90 days, and externally, it had no support! Russian intervention in Afghanistan gave it a golden excuse to stay in power and to get US aid! The Afghans were helped not because of Islam but because they were a good means to get dollars from the US and Saudi Arabia! So much for the Islamic fervour! Pakistan got billions of dollars of US aid most of which was pilfered by Zia and his generals and air marshals! The evidence of this can be seen in the assets of many Jullundhri Pathans or Hindustani generals as held today or those of their sons who are not corrupt politicians by any definition since they are general's sons! (2) What happened in Afghanistan? The US financed a large number of groups, Pathan, Uzbek, Tajik, Hazara, Persian speaking to fight a proxy war. All these groups were Muslim in name but in reality Pathan, Tajik or Uzbek. The Afghan war was a much smaller affair than Vietnam. While about 60,000 Americans died in Vietnam only 14000 Russians died in Afghanistan, an average of 1200 per year. A very insignificant figure in Russian military history keeping in view the fact that about 1,700,000 (Refers-pages-986 and 987 -Hitler and Stalin- Alan Bullock-Alfred. A.Knopf-New York-1992) Russians died in WW One and 13 ,600,000 in WW Two! Compare Afghanistan with Vietnam in terms of ethnicity versus religion. I think that the best thing about the Russian invasion of Afghanistan was the fact that the Tajiks, Uzbeks and Hazaras who had been third rate citizens in a Pathan dominated Afghanistan since 1799 became first rate citizens ! A fact which even today is very irritating and unpleasant for the Taliban which is a deadly anti Shia and essentially Pathan Sunni Group! The Vietnamese were one race and had one ideology. Vietnam is stable and prosperous today without being Muslim or Christian! The Afghans are disunited and in much worse shape in 2000 than in 1988 when the last Russian soldier left its soil ! What is Hekmatyar without US or ISI aid ! Where is his Islamic fervour now ! More was at stake than Islam! CIA dollars in millions were stashed by CIA and ISI operatives or generals and air marshals in Chase Manhattan or Bank of Cheats and Crooks (BCCI)! The only genuine man was Ahmad Shah Masud who did not become a tool of foreign intelligence agencies and is still fighting not based in a Madarssa financed by an Arab anti Shia state or intelligence agency of a foreign country but by virtue of being a man of substance ! Who are the Taliban ! How have they suddenly replaced so-called charismatic Mujahideen commanders like Hekmatyar, Khaliq Abdul Haq etc ! The change proves that Afghanistan was a manipulated affair ! The controls were elsewhere ! The problem is that one country cannot manipulate another endlessly! As the conditions in Afghanistan stabilise, it will be more and more difficult for external powers to manipulate the country! Either there will be a sellout in 2000 or Pakistan will suffer the ravages of a low intensity limited or full war in case adventurism in intelligence agencies is not curbed ! The Afghan Jehad a misnomer was in reality a CIA Jehad and that is why the Afghans are in the
shape they are today ! Their leaders in league with Pakistan's military junta gobbled millions of US dollars and now they talk of confrontation with US ! My knowledge of Pathan history tells me that there will be a sellout in 2000 ! So much for the Taliban and the Osama business ! (3) Few people know that in 1982 at the height of Iran Iraq war General Zia despatched a military advisory group to Iraq ! These people were not there to teach the Iraqi's harmless first aid tactics but were dealing with Iraqi armour and infantry officers fighting a war with another Islamic country! So much for Pakistan's solidarity with Iran! (3) Now coming to Iran's dealings with Russia. Iran at the moment is moving towards close cooperation with Russia. Russia is transferring nuclear technology and also supplying military hardware to Iran. This is most essential for Iran since today's world with a unipolar scenario is far more insecure for smaller states. Muslim, Christian or Atheist than before 1989 ! Why should Iran antagonise the Russians! This is not a sellout. The Iranians are pursuing their national interests, just like Pakistan's usurpers were following their personal interests once they sold Pakistan albeit cheaply and without achieving much to the USA in 1950s or in 1977-88 ! Now coming straight to Chechnya . I have visited Russia twice in 1995 and 1996. Till 1996 the Chechens were doming well in Russia ! They were prominent in Moscow, dominating the Mafia at least marginally and the General Manager of Hotel Raddisson where I was staying was a Chechen! I discussed Chechnya in great detail with this gentleman and many Chechens! The issue is more complicated than we in Pakistan know. The Chechens were happy with the semi independent political status they had achieved in 1996. Only the radical Islamists who were a marginal although well organised group were unhappy. They wanted to export their brand of Islamic radicalism to Daghestan a more liberal and peaceful Muslim state! The present trouble into which Chechnya got into is the result of the absurd and nut headed approach of these Chechen Muslim radicals. Sending guerrillas to Daghestan. Planting bombs in civilian flats in Moscow! These were the acts that provoked the Russian government to attack Chechnya ! The Russians were unhappy when their government attacked Chechnya in 1995 or in 197988 when they attacked Afghanistan. They regarded these wars as adventurism. Now the situation is different. Now the average Russian regards the present war as a just war! Russian public opinion is solidly behind Russian government. It is not the question of Islam versus Christianity as is being made out in Pakistan! The Russians are a people with a barbarian past ! They were ruled by Tartar Muslims, oppressive Romanovs and the totalitarian Bolsheviks. More Russians have died fighting each other than Muslims against Russians. In the Russian Civil War fought in 1917-22 almost ten million people died! A number much larger than the total population of Chechnya ! Chechnya houses some of Russia's largest oil and gas reserves ! It is not Afghanistan which was many hundred miles away from mainland Russia. Its possession is vital to Russia . The Russians can easily conduct military operations unlike Afghanistan where logistic cost of supplying or sustaining military operations was the principal cause of Russian withdrawal! Its just like Balochistan which the Pakistani government would not allow to secede; not because for any special love for the Baloch Muslims; but simply because the province houses Pakistan's largest gas reserves and is geopolitically essential for Pakistan's security! East Pakistan was lost because of geography but Balochistan's geography condemns it to be a province of a larger federal state ! The Afghanistan analogy is not applicable to Chechnya. The Russians withdrew from Afghanistan not because they were militarily defeated but because Gorbachev rightly
assessed that staying on was not cost effective (Pages-207 & 208- Out of AfghanistanCordovez and Harrison-Oxford-1995). Chechnya is an altogether different case because Russian presence there is cost effective because of Chechen oil! The political situation in Russia is once again stabilising. The Communists are once again regaining strength while Putin is likely to emerge as a strong statesman. No amount of statements from the OIC can change the situation. If the Russians are ignoring the OSCE and USA why should they bother about OIC! Why should Iran surrounded by three hostile or potentially hostile neighbours and one super power which every year allocates funds to destabilise Iran antagonise the Russians ; their only trustworthy ally! Where is Islam in case of Kurds! How many Kurds have died fighting Iranian Iraqi and Turkish armies since the last one hundred years! I think ten times more than total number of Chechens killed from January 1999! Where is the Islam of the Islamic Contact Group in case of Kurds who are condemned for eternity to be subjects of Iran, Iraq and Turkey. The first modern Chemical Warfare attack was carried out against the Iraqi Kurds during the Iran-Iraq war! Where was Islam when genocide was committed in 1971 by a Muslim (a misconceived misnomer!) Army against the Bengali Muslims! Religion, ideology etc is nothing but cheap tools employed by the ruling elite to galvanise and drug the masses! The middle class and the feudal clique of UP and Punjab became interested in Muslim separatism only once their class interests were threatened with competitive examinations and concepts of British democracy! The same was true for the Hindu middle and business classes that joined the congress! They thought that they would succeed the British Viceroys in ruling entire India! Hinduism was only a slogan, just as was the case with the Muslim elite! Religion is a good slogan but only a slogan! Democracy ends immediately when Muslims leave the Mosque! Lip service is paid but that is where Islam ends! It will be good for our intellectual health if we forget about Pan Islamism and try to set our own house in order! So far we have miserably failed even to stay as one nation in case of East Pakistan! Today we have the smaller ethnic group's issue which is intricate as well as genuine and demands good statesmanship which is sadly lacking both in India and Pakistan ! Both have been termed as 'failed states' by political scientists ! Both have a history of using coercive power of a modern state against smaller ethnic groups e.g. Kashmir 1989-2000, East Pakistan-1971 , Balochistan 1958-64, Balochistan 1974-77 etc etc. Both the states have been steadily involved in an arms race that will end only once a war limited or total is finally fought . A dispassionate study of history proves that men are but victims of currents of history and cannot change the tide of history! Europe learned its lesson after two world wars and is saner ! China learned its lesson from 1911-1949 and is now saner ! Unfortunately Pakistan and India have fought small wars ; petty skirmishes by western standards in which total casualties of each side was less than 10,000 killed. That is why both have hawks; theoretical hawks I would say; arm chair strategists; Don Quixote's who think that Kashmir can we won (Pakistan) or retained (India)! The motivation of the ruling elite on both sides is ulterior! Its not ideology Islam or secularism but ego, powers, lusts for glory! Bismarck's does not lead them or Churchill's but myopic men with limited vision, short-term goals and personal agendas advised by dark horse adventist intelligence agencies! Sundarji called them blind men of Hindustan ; a better name may be 'Blind men of Hind-o-Pak'! These are shortsighted men
who have not understood what General Sherman said at Atlanta after the US Civil War i.e. 'there are many a boys here who think of war as glory, but it is hell!' As a soldier I wish that both the countries should either fight it out so that we at least discover (I would say rediscover or confirm as far as ex soldiers are concerned!) The qualitative efficiency of our general officers or arrive at a settlement! Otherwise it's a never-ending game of musical chairs, which the ruling elite of both the countries is making the common man play! The qualities of generalship and mediocrity in higher ranks on both sides have been well proved in 1947-48, 1965 and 1971! 2000 if it proves decisive will inshaallah prove as no exception. And lastly Pan Islamism is dangerous . It is better if we concentrate on setting our own house in order. Major A.H Amin (Retired) 1021 Arlington Blvd Arlington va-22209 USA Pavocavalry@hotmail.com PUBLICATIONS , RECOMMENDATIONS AND TESTIMONIALS AGHA H AMIN http://www.scribd.com/doc/92399986/Testimonials-Recommendations-andPublications http://www.scribd.com/doc/83916444/Agha-H-Amin-Publications BRIEF HISTORY OF PAVO 11 CAVALRY http://indopakmilitaryhistory.blogspot.com/2011/09/pavo-11-cavalry.html PUBLICATIONS AGHA H AMIN http://www.scribd.com/doc/61839666/Indo-Pak-Wars-A-Pictorial-History http://www.scribd.com/doc/21686885/TALIBAN-WAR-IN-PAKISTANAFGHANISTAN-A-WRITERS-PERCEPTIONS-FROM-2001-TO-2011 http://www.scribd.com/doc/22457862/Military-Decision-making-and-leadership http://www.scribd.com/doc/22151765/History-of-Pakistan-Army-from-1757-to1971-PRINTING-ENABLED-Do-acknowledge-to-the-author
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