|Benazir Bhutto , the clear foreign policy leader.|
In her first chapter "The most allied ally" she takes a bold , individual and seminal stance on the US -Pakistan relationship. She laments the attitude of Pakistan towards the US as a love affair , all or none relationship. She says that this does not prepare Pakistan for a "rainy day". Pakistan's opposition or silent status at China's membership at UN etc and its "sub-normal" relationship with socialist states is criticized.She says that Pakistan builds one sided bridges which do not exist in politics and diplomacy. How true and prophetic this perspective seems in the context of the difficult diplomatic relationship that is now existing between Pakistan and the US.
Zulifiqar Ali Bhutto did lean towards China and that was the starting point in his foreign policy perspective and Benazir built up this perspective on that foundation. She did strengthen the Sino-Pakistan relationship and bonding much more than any previous leader and her legacy holds. This has been utilized even by the armed forces and other allied industries despite their leanings towards the US.
Another very interesting and almost prophetic perspective statement is about the independence of Tunisia and Morocco.She writes that General Ayub Khan called the US a "natural friend of Pakistan". The independence of the two states was vigorously supported by Pakistan because it was not opposed by the US. How ironic that at present her party government is being criticized as a supporter of the US although pragmatism requires this stance in foreign policy at this critical times and stage of history.
This chapter shows clearly her leanings towards a strong, bold and independent foreign policy. Her accusers and enemies in Pakistan are clear liars against her today as her writings can be seen by all.
In the chapter USA she asks the US government that was it necessary to destabilize Pakistan in 1977? This question pre-Taleban Alqaeda emergence gives the basic insight into the politics of the region that are now eating away at the very foundations and existence of Pakistan. Says she that the acquisition of the "Reprocessing plant " by Pakistan was the basis on which US punished the government of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto. It is ironic that the generation that carries the legacy of that US supported militant, founding memebers of the Afghan Jihad have finally killed this leader and their political supporters in Pakistan use the name of Islam to carry out the agenda that the US set for them in the 1980s/ It seems that her book clearly gives the perspective in which Mr. Bhutto's judicial murder was clandestinely handled by the military cum jihadi supporters of the US.
In writing about who is Pakistan's closest friend she maintains Zulfikar Ali Bhutto's stance that Pakistan's closest friend will be the country with whom she shares her common interest.The degree of the relationship changes with the degree of common interest.She emphasizes maintenance of good relationship with all the great powers . She emphasizes that the deterioration of US-Pakistan relations during Zulfikar Ali Bhutto was not his doing because "For a leader of the people can never compromise on a central national issue".
Her book clearly shows the political and foreign policy blunders that the establishment and military junta of 1977 and later years has done that have brought Pakistan to this stage of socio-economic collapse. It also gives insight into the "Tsunami" politics that are now blaming the incumbent government for all the evils that the US backed militant-jihadi-psuedo-political players did.
It is sad that Pakistanis forget and distort historical facts. It is sad that Benazir Bhutto was killed for her clear perspectives on foreign policy for Pakistan.It is sad that Pakistan remains, illiterate, unhealthy and unloved by its own elite be it military or civilian. It is sad that leaders like her were silenced so that Pakistan remians failed, corrupt and poor. It is sad that there will never be any justice supreme in Pakistan despite the populist, verbal Tsunami by the "New Emperor" pushed suddenly forward by the establishment.
Writer of this post Dr Meher Zaidi. (Ref: Forign Policy Perspective, Agha Amir Hussain, Classic, 42, Shahrahe Qauid e Azam , Lahore, Pakistan)