In the contemporary world, countries’ foreign policy makers do not leave any stone unturned in promoting their national interests through their competitors’ imprudence. Here is the Islamic Republic of Pakistan whose intelligentsia misses the possibilities of stoking its narrative in the international arena. History will record that when the journalists, analysts and anchorpersons of Pakistan were bemoaning the disqualification, subsequent punishment and Kot Lakhpat Jail of ousted prime minister Mian Nawaz Sharif, when Indian guns were spewing bullets on the LOC near Azad Kashmir, when the Sikh community of Indian Punjab was burning the Indian flag outside the Indian Council in Washington to promote its separation cause, had Pakistan wanted to it could have won a monumental political, social, technical and diplomatic ‘war’ on the foreign policy horizon.
What’s even more shameful is that we’re busy inquiring where Baba Rehmata has gone to after his retirement, what options of NRO does Nawaz Sharif have, how long would Imran Khan’s present cabinet last, what good is the Public Accounts Committee for, why did Fawad Khan sing the anthem for PSL4, when will Fayyaz ul Hassan Chohan realise the error of his ways?
Amongst all these breaking headlines we have neglected an extremely significant book ‘The Betrayal of India’, and have continued to do so for a year and a half now, probably because Pakistan as a state is not part of our priorities or the fact that we are so engrossed in showcasing elements of entertainment on our news channels that we didn’t realise what we are losing along the way. Had the contents of this book been used strategically, India would have experienced a colossal fall on the international level and the web of lies woven by Indian media regarding Mumbai attacks could have been dismantled. Fact of the matter is that truth will start dawning upon us only if we start realising that the conventional weapons of war have been done away with/that wars fought with tanks and bullets are a thing of the past now, now eons are spent in the image-building and branding of states, and multitudes of think tanks are employed for this purpose whose vision and mindsets are devoted to win the diplomatic warfront.
Elias Davidsson is a German Jewish author. His world renowned book ‘Hijacking America’s Mind on 9/11’ containing some hard-hitting revelations stirred up a storm in the global arena. Davidsson has been heavily criticised in the west for his unconventional investigative style but a certain group of people respects Davidsson’s perspective and commends his findings. On 26 November 2008 when the Indian city Mumbai was rattled with resounding explosions and bullets, the entire blame fell upon Pakistan, Hafiz Saeed and Lashkar-e-Tayyaba. Mumbai police had only just reported that the perpetrators of the attack had been arrested alive that the entire Indian media started raising hue and cry against Pakistan. In an effort to create a state-wide hysteria, the Indian media left no stone unturned in demonising the state of Pakistan.
With a heavy heart, we must acquiesce that India is far superior in utilising their lobbying tools, they are far-sighted, swift in action and aware of the art of propagation
Pakistan’s news media added further fuel to the fire; they managed to paint the whole picture from Ajmal Kasab and his abettors’ alleged route from Pakistan via sea to Mumbai to the attack on different areas of the city including that on Taj Hotel. (For the record, going against state policy and nationalism/patriotism, Ajmal Kasab’s alleged relation to Pakistan was established in a private news channel’s report). If Pakistan is blamed, the state is subjected to international pressure and accused of state-sponsored terrorism. The aftereffects of this news haunt us to this day because India reiterates its narrative of Mumbai attack at every diplomatic event, conspiring to put external pressure on the state of Pakistan.
Putting aside India’s propaganda, Elias Davidsson has revealed some shocking facts regarding the Mumbai attack in his book ‘The Betrayal of India’. The book comprises 905 pages and every page reflects India’s hideous reality backed by strong evidences. Through this book, Davidsson has tried proving that the Mumbai attack on 26 November 2008 was a scripted and hatched drama directed by the Indian and Israeli Intelligence Agencies, RAW and Mossad. The author has deemed ‘David Headley’, the most significant actor associated with this incident, a distraction from the actual event. According to the first 300 pages of the book, the documented proofs and witnesses in the case of Mumbai attack actually prove that the whole incident was a drama.
Some of India’s greatest institutions including the central government, parliament, bureaucracy, army, Mumbai police, RAW, judiciary and media purposefully tried to cloak the truth of the attack; the book also contains shocking facts about anti-Pakistan thinker Henry Kissinger and US Foreign Secretary Condoleezza Rice. The author claims that both these characters were privy to India’s scripted drama and such a drama where the statements of witnesses, identification of perpetrators, evidential objects and even the impressions given by common people are so incoherent and unfounded that anybody can deduce the facts by themselves. Nowhere in these 300 pages has Davidsson given his personal opinion about the incident, rather 99pc of the material is based on concrete proofs and facts.
Elias Davidsson has done some groundbreaking investigative work but one cannot help but salute the Pakistani government and media that they did not even budge an inch. Should the Pakistani media that had so successfully picturised Ajmal Kasab’s alleged journey from the Pakistani soil and given the details of the Mumbai attack not have played on this breaking revelation? What’s shameful is that this news piece was given a cursory place in the bulletin and neither the state machinery nor the media tried to make the most of it. There was no program on it. No documentary was made on it, nobody even bothered to conduct Davidsson’s interview on it. As far as the state is concerned, the Pakistani government should have knocked on the doors of International Court of Justice and the United Nations to reveal India’s vile face, but for reasons unknown, this matter was silenced. And the silence continues.
With a heavy heart, we must acquiesce that India is far superior in utilising their lobbying tools, they are far-sighted, swift in action and aware of the art of propagation. Take for example India’s reaction on ‘Chhabahar’ and their relation with Afghanistan. We are quite behind in lobbying techniques and tackling news at the international level for which the burden lies on our stakeholders. The issues that are quite secondary for us are given unnecessary primary importance, our media faces the same dilemma. We are ignorant of our state’s working policy; Priya Prakash Varrier’s arched eyebrow remains the more significant issue for us than the revelations in Davidsson’s book.
If our state including ISPR and our government including the interior and foreign ministers continue playing with the same defensive policy on the diplomatic pitch instead of playing to their full advantage then our upcoming generations would have to face consistent defeats in this consular tussle. The enemy is quite cunning and shrewd; if we remain entrapped in the farcical elements and frauds existing in our politics and government, the gravity of situation might shift this war from the diplomatic front to the borders.