Delhi, 16 February 2002
had reported the visit of Musharraf in our Media Watch but we see a
waiting game by USA to see whether Musharraf will survive and whether his
long drawn up plans fructify, otherwise USA could fall flat on its face.
USA also wants elections in Pakistan this October so the whole Great Game
of Oil in the region, strategic interests and India–Pakistan stand off
and war on Terror are the big challenges for President Bush and his
excellent Vulcan team of Power players .
spending in USA is up and the budget is to be $379 billion equal to
India’s official GDP. The article below brought to our attention by an
NRI in USA is the best to explain USA’s dilemma and Musharraf’s visit
to USA. He got $1 billion, a lot of praise and nothing else .Yet this
should not let India think USA will ever let down Pakistan in favour of
India .It will support India to gain a biz access into our Potential and a
strategic toe hold for the East without letting our own relations with
Russia get disturbed.
should grab it with both hands but be clear what we want economically,
strategically and in resolving Kashmir –– USA is groping for these
answers while it establishes a military relationship. Maybe our Leaders
are not uncertain what we want from USA. USA is doing its best to get
Musharraf to curb terrorism, which is our only demand .The BJP Government
feels all this can wait till the next elections when they are in full
power and they will propel India forward .A bird in hand is better than
two in the bush has been IDC philosophy.
Musharraf couldn't have dreamed of a warmer welcome. In his long-sought
first official visit to the White House, the beaming Pakistani president
won lavish praise Wednesday from a grateful President Bush, who said
Pakistan's help has been critical to the U.S. war against terrorism.
want to remind people from Pakistan that I didn't mention many world
leaders in my State of the Union (address). But I mentioned President
Musharraf for a reason,'' Bush said. ''I'm proud to call him friend.''
even as Musharraf basked in the warm reception midway through a
three-day visit to Washington, his trip raises questions about just
how stable the Bush–Musharraf partnership could be in the coming
months or years.
officials appreciate Musharraf's support. But they also worry about
his tenuous hold on power in a deeply divided and impoverished nation,
as well as his personal credibility in the wake of a series of
questionable public statements.
kinship is new: Musharraf took power by leading a military coup in
1999, and the United States kept him at arm's length until Pakistan's
help became crucial to military success against neighboring
Afghanistan and its Taliban regime.
officials say they believe Musharraf favours dramatic change for his
country. Bush lauded a speech Musharraf gave last month in which he
promised to move Pakistan away from religious extremism and tolerance
of terrorism and toward, as Bush put it, ''a progressive, modern and
democratic Islamic society.''
gave the speech to defuse tensions with India after terrorists
attacked India's Parliament. India blamed the incident on
Pakistan-based terrorist groups that have long had ties with
Pakistan's intelligence services.
question whether Musharraf is serious about ending state support for
terrorism. ''One must take his latest statements about wanting
Pakistan to be a secular Muslim society with a grain of salt,'' said
Ted Galen Carpenter, a foreign policy analyst at the Cato Institute.
comments by Musharraf also illustrate stark divisions between Islamabad
and Washington, as well as concerns within the Bush administration about
his personal style.
times, Musharraf sounds like a peacemaker, stressing that differences
with India, including a feud over the divided Himalayan region of
Kashmir, should ''be settled through peaceful means.'' Pakistan, which
is predominantly Muslim, says the largely Muslim province should be
free of Indian control. India, a secular but largely Hindu country,
has control of just less than 50% of Kashmir.
at other times during his trip, Musharraf has sounded bellicose: He
blamed India for current tensions, and called his nuclear rival's
military build up ''aggressive,'' ''massive'' and ''provocative.''
keeps calling for U.S. mediation for Kashmir. ''We believe the United
States can help South Asia turn a new leaf,'' he said Wednesday. But
Bush keeps rebuffing the request and says only the two countries can
solve the dispute.
has a penchant for provocative statements that cause shudders in the
Bush administration. The latest example: Tuesday, he suggested that
India either plans or has conducted a nuclear test. U.S. officials
scoff at the suggestion.
week, Musharraf said India might be behind the kidnapping of
journalist Daniel Pearl, an assertion that U.S. and Indian officials
January, Musharraf said he thought terrorist leader Osama bin Laden
had died from kidney disease. Asked about that during a visit to the
Pentagon on Wednesday, Musharraf wouldn't repeat it. He said instead,
''I would certainly think that he is in Afghanistan either dead or
security around Musharraf –– every audience member was searched
twice before being admitted to a speech Tuesday –– spoke to
another nagging concern, the stability of his regime. His decision to
crush some terror groups has triggered a powerful backlash among
still worry that his government may not survive in the long run,''
says David Albright, a leading expert on Pakistan's nuclear program.
''I don't think that issue is completely settled.''