Watching a new reality show!

 

Image: Courtesy Viewpoint Online

 

 

So far Pakistan and the U.S. have been successful in creating the illusion that it was the U.S. that developed and managed the reality show “Obama Got Osama” single handedly. In this age of the internet marvels, however, we might not have to wait too long until another leak reveals the secret.

TV channels are showing a popular reality show these days all over the world called “Obama Got Osama” and we the poor, captive audience tend to believe what we see without asking any question! Although the death of the terrorist leader Osama bin Laden is good news for the whole world, I sincerely believe it was a stunning performance of the U.S. Navy Seals in Abbottabad, Pakistan, collaboratively conceived by the United States and Pakistan.

There is little doubt in my mind that the reality show was innovatively produced by the joint efforts of the CIA, the U.S. armed forces in Afghanistan, Pakistan army and its intelligence agency ISI. The spectacular reality show served both Pakistan and the U.S. perfectly. It improved President Obama’s rating, who was losing popularity, and the timing was perfect for Pakistan to stage the event. The American aid package to Pakistan is currently being discussed in Washington D.C. while the mutual diplomatic relations were taking a nasty downturn before the operation.

Americans, on the other hand, repeatedly assured Pakistanis that their leaders were not involved in the operation apparently to calm down their protest. Pakistan, in return, allowed Americans to provide access to Osama’s wives for further interrogation.

Army, however, is the strongest force in Pakistani politics and it has a tendency to keep politicians and elected governments in the dark about important strategic matters. Although it is quite possible the president and prime minister are not informed about the raid in Abbottabad but it is hard to believe the military top brass and ISI did not know about the operation in a military town near its enormous training center.

Pakistan has been playing a double game of mouse and cat for quite some time. Whenever, there are bumps in the relations or the U.S. aid to Pakistan is in jeopardy, some terrorists magically pop up, get caught, and handed over to Americans promptly. Two top Al Qaeda leaders, Abu Zubaidah and Abu Faraj al-Libbi were handed over to the U.S. in 2002 and 2005.Khalid Sheikh Mohammed,one of the masterminds of 9/11 wasalso caught along with several other terrorists and handed over to the U.S. in March 2003. Pakistan army might have decided to hand over the top Al Qaeda leader to the United Sates when he became a liability for them.

If it would have been a one-sided operation as claimed by the U.S., it would have ignited a wave of strong protest from the Pakistani establishment. Although Prime Minister Yousef Raza Gilani lodged a lukewarm protest in Parliament, surprisingly there was a pin drop silence with no significant hue and cry from any side.

Interestingly enough, the British newspaper Guardian has recently revealed a secret agreement between the two countries struck in 2001 that allowed the U.S. to pursue and catch Osama in Pakistan. The report said the secret deal between the former presidents of both countries George W. Bush and General Pervez Musharraf gave a free hand to the U.S. to pursue and catch Osama inside Pakistan. It was agreed that Pakistan will protest for face saving with no real action in case this happens.

This is exactly what the Pakistani government doing these days! Although the Army chief General Pervez Kayani and Prime Minister Gilani both have issued warnings that any further U.S. intrusion inside Pakistan will be dealt with force, no real measure was announced to back up their protest.

Official statements in Washington D.C. and Islamabad also revealed collaboration between the two countries carefully isolating Pakistan from the operation to avoid public reaction against the civil-military establishment.

President Obama’s televised speech on May 2 carefully placed the event in the proper historical context and declared in inconspicuous terms that the U.S. has full power to operate in Pakistan. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Islamabad, toeing the same line accepted the U.S. rights to enter the country in a press release on May 2.

On the U.S. side, President Obama desperately needed to improve his image to restore his popularity for the 2012 election. A survey of Americans reported he regained popularity after the operation as 54 percent of the U.S. public viewed Obama favorably versus 31 who had a negative opinion of the president, according to an NBC News poll conducted May 5-7. Of course, that was one of the major motives behind the whole adventure in Abbottabad.

So far Pakistan and the U.S. have been successful in creating the illusion that it was the U.S. that developed and managed the reality show “Obama Got Osama” single handedly. In this age of internet marvels, however, we might not have to wait too long until another leak reveals the secret.

Enjoy the reality show until then!

(From Viewpoint Online)

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