In the first week of April, Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan made an interesting statement, which he – and his ISI smart alecks – calculated would embarrass Narendra Modi.No economy, no friends, no internal political allies, no diplomatic plays left. Pakistan is without any cards post #Article370 revocation Click To Tweet
“Perhaps if the BJP (Bharatiya Janata Party)….wins, some kind of settlement in Kashmir could be reached,” Khan told a small group of foreign journalists in an interview. (source)
At that time, Congress and other opposition parties had jumped on this and tried to “corner” Modi by saying that “vote for Modi is a vote for Pakistan”. Which everyone knew was juvenile nonsense anyway. No one believed them then.
But the statement got stuck with Imran Khan.
Now, during the joint session of Parliament, the opposition is asking Imran Khan if he even knew what he was talking about and what kind of counsel he was getting for his foreign policy? After all, he is the foreign minister as well.
At a time, when Pakistani establishment is mad at India and Modi, and want to hit back at both, they have no cards.
Economic death trap
Economically they are on death-bed with no resurrection in sight. And, they have no political or diplomatic plays left. They used to have terrorism as their weapon, but ever since Uri and Pulwama, the fight has been taken back into the Pakistani territory. Balochistan resistance and other forces – some educational and awareness campaigns included – have ensured that the biggest investment project – the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is no longer viable or active. If Pakistan backs terror in a way that is visible, then not only will their situation under FATF be impacted and IMF loan disbursements be at stake, but there will be no economic activity in sight. No one is investing anyway. No one wants to export anything because there is a high degree of uncertainty in the social environment and also bad infrastructure.
But with diplomatic power and ability to put geo-political pressure nowhere in sight and open terror camps off the table; there are really no options left for Pakistan.
Political vendettas and their ramifications
Therefore basically there is no opposition left in Pakistan!
That is why when Imran Khan remarked that PM Modi had pushed the opposition against a wall (deewar ke saath laga diya hai), Shahbaz Sharif (Nawaz Sharif’s brother) retorted – but you have buried us in the wall (deewar mein chunwa diya hai!)
As Imran Khan shouted out his prejudice and hatred for Hindus and RSS in his speech, Shahbaz Sharif reminded him that it was the RSS man Atal Bihari Vajpayee who had walked all the way to Lahore to meet Nawaz Sharif for peace!
No friends, No cards!
Even the UAE has backed India when the UAE Ambassador to India, Dr Ahmad Al Banna, suggested that from his understanding the reorganisation of states is not a unique incident in the history of independent India and that it was mainly aimed at reducing regional disparity and improving efficiency. Clearly, no friend is now left for Pakistan globally.
It attacked Iran (a day before Pulwama) on the orders of the Saudis. It brought in the Saudis in Gwadar and angered the Chinese. Enough for them to change their stance on Masood Azhar. Pakistan also made a mess of themselves by playing it safe in Yemen. And, then Imran Khan got into a twitter battle with Donald Trump. That is a sin that Trump never forgives anyone for!
“You tell me what I should do?” said a frustrated and dejected Imran Khan in reply to Shahbaz Sharif’s speech. “I have raised it before the Western countries, the OIC, and I will be talking to other countries as well. Do you want me to attack India?”
That one moment sums up the mood in the Pakistani establishment.
Not all battles are won on the battlefield. Some are won without firing a shot. Without even stepping foot on another’s territory. Simply by giving your enemy enough rope so he can hang himself. You just need to gift him a nice and beautiful overbridge so he can have something to hang himself from.
That is all that Modi and Doval have done.