US-Pakistan Anti-terrorism Coalition Close to Collapse

truther December 7, 2011 0

Xiaoqiang (People’s Daily Overseas Edition)

Pakistan has reacted to the NATO air strike that hit the Pakistan army on Nov. 26, ordering the closure of the logistical supply line for U.S. troops in Pakistan and NATO allies within its territory. It also demanded U.S. troops to retreat from an air base in Baluchistan before a specified deadline and started to fully reassess Pakistan-U.S. relations.

This is the worst setback for the U.S.-Pakistan anti-terrorism coalition since its establishment 10 years ago and also a symbolic event indicating the progressive deterioration of U.S.-Pakistan relations after the Davis case and the death of Osama Bin Laden earlier this year. The US-Pakistan anti-terrorism coalition is about to collapse.


Different strategic objectives are basic causes behind the unsustainable U.S.-Pakistan anti-terrorism coalition. The main anti-terrorism objective of the United States in Afghanistan is to strike the Al-Qaeda network and ensure existing U.S. interests in that region. On the contrary, Pakistan’s main objective is to eliminate local security troubles and obtain adequate strategic depth in the western region.

An important reason leading the anti-terrorism coalition the verge of collapse is that the United States follows no rules in its anti-terrorism actions. The United States always says “rules must be followed” on the one hand, but it ignores basic principles of international law while conducting anti-terrorism activities in Pakistan and Afghanistan on the other hand.

Unmanned U.S. aerial vehicles have recklessly trampled on Pakistan’s sovereignty, security and territorial integrity, and caused casualties of Pakistani civilians, soldiers and policemen. The case of Bin Laden killed by the United States this May reveals the United States’ selfishness and distrust in Pakistan since it has not considered the feeling of Pakistan as a front-line ally of anti-terrorism at all and never regarded Pakistan as an equal anti-terrorism partner.

Since the beginning of 2011, the Pakistani government has been facing heavy domestic pressure about the Pakistan-U.S. anti-terrorism alliance. Pakistani people regard the U.S. crossing of the Pakistani border to kill Bin Laden as a public insult to their country and have started to question the Pakistani army’s capacity to defend the country.

The political and military authorities of Pakistan are facing severe challenges and are already not able to stand by and allow the United States to continue damaging Pakistan’s sovereignty and security just for a little U.S. aid any more.

With the presidential election in 2012 in sight, the Zardari administration has to follow public opinion and reevaluate Pakistan-U.S. relations. But in the United States, criticism over Pakistan and calls for reshuffling relations have appeared, with the media expressing distrust.

Currently, the relationship between Pakistan and the International Security Assistance Force of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization has dropped to the freezing point. If the United States does not change its policies and take measures to guarantee Pakistan’s sovereign and security, the U.S.-Pakistan alliance will inevitably come to an end.

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