Written by Sajjad Shaukat
From time to time, shift occurs in international politics, depending on the relationship of big countries and their strategic rivalries.
In this regard, Pakistan has a strategic geo-political location at the corridor of world’s major maritime oil supply lines, and has close proximity to oil rich Central Asian countries. Its location could influences Central Asia, South Asia and the Middle East. Besides, Balochistan’s mineral resources and geo-strategic location with deep Gwadar seaport, entailing Islamabad’s close ties with Beijing pinches the eyes of the US, India, Israel and some western countries which intend to destabilize Pakistan for their common interests. These hostile powers are trying to create fissures between Pakistan and China so as to sabotage their alliance.
Availing the opportunity of the western propaganda, secret agencies like CIA, RAW and Mossad have also increased their secret activities against Pak-China relationship by supporting subversive acts in various regions of Pakistan, and by backing the insurgents of Balochistan.
In 2013, a day before Chinese Premier Li Keqiang arrived in Islamabad; Chinese engineers being driven through Clifton Block-1 in Karachi escaped a major bomb attack.
Afterwards, foreign-assisted Baloch separatist elements targeted Chinese engineers, working at Gwader. In fact, external supported-militant groups such as Balolchistan Liberation Army (BLA) and Jundollah (God’s soldiers) including other insurgent groups are fulfilling the secret strategic designs of the US-led countries at the cost of Pakistan and China. In the past few years, these militants abducted and killed many Chinese and Iranian nationals in Pakistan. On a number of occasions, these insurgent groups claimed responsibility for their heinous activities.
Plot by foreign elements against Balochistan and China could also be judged from the “Indian Defence Review,” of Jan-Mar 2009. The Review, while suggesting the disintegration of Pakistan, wrote that for New Delhi, “This opens a window of opportunity to ensure that the Gwadar port does not fall into the hand of China. Afghanistan will gain stability…India’s access to Central Asian energy routes will open up.”
It is due to covert strategic aims that the US which signed a nuclear deal with India in 2008 seeks to dismember both Pakistan and Iran—particularly to counterbalance China by making India superpower of Asia. During his visit to India in 2010, US President Barrack Obama signed multiple agreements with New Delhi in various fields. Owing to these agreements, India has also been purchasing C-17 and F35 aircrafts along with latest defence-related arms and equipments from America and other western countries, especially Israel.
Setting aside the Indian irresponsible record of non-proliferation, defence agreement signed between the US and India on July 20, 2011 as part of the deal about civil nuclear technology, agreed upon by the two countries in 2008. America also pressurized International Atomic Energy Agency and the Nuclear Suppliers Group to grant a waiver to New Delhi for obtaining civil nuclear trade on larger scale.
Especially, on July 20, 2011, while hinting towards Pak-China ties, the then US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton urged India to be more assertive in Asia, saying that as American ally, the country should play more of a leadership role. She explained, “India has the potential to positively shape the future of the Asia-Pacific.”
The United States seems determined to keep around 10,000 troops in Afghanistan permanently after the withdrawal of NATO forces in 2014. Besides, US has also planned to maintain Indian role in Afghanistan to complete hidden agenda against Pakistan and China.
Taking cognizance of the enemy’s intensions, during his trip to Beijing, Pakistan’s Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Chinese Prime Minister Li Keqiang signed eight agreements on July 5, 2013 in various fields. The most important one envisages the establishment of China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) between deep Gwadar seaport of Balochistan and the historic Silk Road city in western regions-Xinjiang of China—connecting to Gilgit-Baltistan through Khunjerab Pass. Beijing has also offered to build an international airport, while the roads infrastructure in Gwadar would be connected with the communication network of rest of the country to facilitate transportation of goods. By rejecting US growing pressure, Pakistan has handed over the control of Gwader seaport to China.
In fact, Pak-China relations signify manifestation of mutual deference, deep feelings of affinity and natural political alliance. Their ties are based on principled pledges. Consequently, both the countries honorably supported each others proposals, plans and interests at regional and international levels including conventions at the UNO and global trade forums—resolution of regional and international disputes and initiatives to espouse ethical and legal issues. In this respect, China courageously supported Pakistan on its righteous stand on Kashmir and related UN resolutions. Both countries are still in consonance with each others strategic and policy framework. Pak-China relations simply reflect all-seasoned friendship free of petty prejudices and arid localized notion. History of Pak-China friendship and enhanced sense of mutual compassion enable them to reap the fruits of their all-weather strategic partnership. Due to fresh avenues of development and economic opportunities in commerce, trade, business etc., Pak-China friendship seems to attain new optimism.
Unfortunately, regional and international powers including US, Western powers, India and Japan, driven by their sense of economic competition, imperial designs to seize and grab energy, gold and other natural resources, and power motives to augment their political influence, are trying to create a wedge between China and Pakistan. Their misleading analysis and skewed reports using irritating jargons and threatening hunches are targeting the general public to create a sense of mistrust and misperceptions among them.
A recent analysis titled, “China in Pakistan: An Awkward Relationship Beneath the Surface,” published by Royal United Strategy Institute (RUSI Newsbrief, on January 15 2014) is a case in point. US and some western powers, being economic rivals of China are trying to create suspicions between Beijing and Islamabad, while the two friendly countries are planning to undertake mega economic projects like CPEC, construction of dams and Chinese investment in Pakistani textile, energy, banking, trade and industrial sectors including numerous other development projects.
It appears as if evergreen Pak-China friendship has become a major source of concern for anti-Pakistan elements and economic adversaries of China. In this context, Shaheen Sehbai in his article titled, “Cheen Ki Wikileaks,” published in a renowned Urdu daily, on January 27, 2014 also expressed bitterness over Pak-China cooperation claiming that rampant corruption in China will be hazardous for Pakistan—suggested that the Pakistan Government should not place all eggs in Chinese basket. His article has frightening contents for Islamabad as Chinese are likely to be misguided. Although he claims to have picked up details of Chinese corruption from foreign Website (The Global Mail and International Consortium of Investigative Journalists), yet timings of such reports clearly point at a mindset and a game-plan to create disappointing impressions of Chinese partnership with Pakistan. However, external propagandists are launching their anti-China campaign through multifaceted drive involving Pakistani writers like Shaheen Sehbai to gain credibility.
As a matter of fact, CPEC seriously irritates China’s rivals, while slow progress provides them an opportunity to comment negatively on the agreement. Chinese security in Pakistan is being blotted to stop Chinese investment in Pakistan. This is incorrectly linked to anti-Chinese sentiments in Pakistan which holds Beijing in high esteem, considering it as an all-seasoned friend and so is the case in China.
Propagandists are falsely trying to link issue of the East Turkestan Islamic Movement (ETIM) in Xinjiang (insurgency in China) to Pakistan and Taliban. The truth does not validate such allegations as Islamabad is not involved in any scheme detrimental to Beijing, as India is supporting the militancy in Xinjiang. Pakistani media must assert that linking Pakistan in such fundamentalist ideologies is totally erroneous and unjust.
Sino-Pakistan relations are being propagated in terms of trade, while it is argued that China has also invested in other regional countries like India and Afghanistan, and there is nothing special about Pak-China friendship. Our media must also project that both China and Pakistan cherish their friendship and consider their relations as everlasting. Chinese affinity towards Pakistan is jealously, felt by the rivals who lead to propagate against their companionship.
Besides, false corruption reports, published by selected group of journalists in West regarding China need to be responded by our media commentators. They should also indicate that Pakistani writers like Shaheen Sehbai must not promote foreign propaganda against China—a strategic partner and all-weather friend of Pakistan, while Pakistan must make efforts to enhance ties with China. Sino-Pakistan old partnership must exploit regional economic opportunities and complete mega development projects to realize the dream Chinese and Pakistani peoples. This will automatically counter anti-China propaganda. It is the right response to those lobbies which are trying to create fissures between Pakistan and China with a view to negatively impact their time tested friendship.
Sajjad Shaukat writes on international affairs and is author of the book: US vs Islamic Militants, Invisible Balance of Power: Dangerous Shift in International Relations