Improving US Image in Pakistan:The Hows of it!

By Brig Nadir Mir

Regardless of US, Pakistan remaining allies or not, they were never destined to be enemies. Yet anti Americanism grows in Pakistan and frustration with Pakistan increases in America. Even though ‘disenchanted allies’ for long, the last decade, post 9/11 has resulted in a growing animosity. This is a result of American geopolitical naivete, Pakistani wishfulness and Indians deceit creating an explosive brew. Yet there is a clear distinction between US and Pakistani global perceptions. US being a global albeit sole super power has to worry about a long list of geopolitical rivals, allies, surrogates and fence sitters.

Washington has to relate to Putin’s Russia, China’s rise, the Middle East Arab Spring, Turkish growth and independence, keeping Israel on a tight leash, Iran’s defiance, North Korean wild card antics, European economic gloom and doom (of EU), India unreliable both as friend or foe etc. Besides the mess American Neo Con policy resulted in at home and abroad (bankrupt at home and over stretched abroad).

Pakistan’s case is much simpler. Its geopolitical world is limited. Indian threat, Afghanistan issues and American relations are key subjects for now. Afghanistan the geopolitical square on the global chessboard for testing both! American stock in Pakistan has plunged to the lowest depth. America needs Pakistan, while it is in Afghanistan. But Washington will need Islamabad even more later. Pakistan’s geography is globally pivotal. (This scribe’s book ‘Gwadar on the Global Chessboard’ makes it quite evident). Pakistan’s demography will be the most numerous in the Muslim world (3 billion Muslims by 2030). Pakistan may be the world’s 3rd or 4th most populous state decades from now. According to Mr. Bruce Riedel (former CIA and advisor to President Obama) Pakistan will possess the world’s 4th or 5th biggest nuclear arsenal in the next decade. The key question Americans  should address – how to improve its image in Pakistan?

A few cardinal points to ponder are presented here:


The only people who are duped by Fox TV, Neo Con plus Globalists Media etc are some gullible Americans. The rest of the world including Pakistanis are quite clear about these issues. Even if the majority of Pakistanis lack high end education, there is ample rustic wisdom in the Pakistani Nation. America’s constant reference to Pakhtoons, Baloch, Punjabis, Sindhis, Sunni, Shia etc, are seen as attempts to divide the Pakistani people. As is US patronage of dictator dispensation and elite, viewed as corrupt plus treacherous by many in Pakistan. Washington’s investment in Pakistani liberals is also a complete waste as far as containing extremism is concerned. Pakistani Nationalists with moderate views are the best recipe for dealing with extremists of various hues. Pakistan’s liberals are frequently and often correctly seen as puppets with self aggrandizing agendas. Many NGOS have been discredited due to American links. Even European or other western NGOS, organization have fallen in disrepute (for no fault of theirs) as being fronts and full filling US agenda.

Bottom line: ‘Befriend the people of Pakistan’.


Pakistani nukes though guarded by its military are the pride of the nation. In a country of corrupt elite, hungry and angry people, internal and external threats, the nukes are seen as deterrents, equalizers and symbols of national pride.

Relentless American inspired propaganda against Pakistani nukes – missiles (even if contributed by India and others) is threatening, shocking and pride snatching for Pakistanis. Indo – US nuclear deal is nuclear apartheid for Pakistan. (Regardless of what Americans say about AQ khan’s affairs). Pakistani Nation would prefer nukes to be used if it ever faces – ‘use them or lose them scenario’.

The average Pakistani knows that India does not have the capability or courage to attempt nuclear defanging of Pakistan. But the Gungho – cow boys might attempt it, resulting in a regional – global catastrophe.

Bottom line: US should accept ‘Nuclear Pakistan’ or at least stop its tirade against it.

Centre of Gravity

Geopolitically speaking ISI – Pakistan military is the centre of gravity. Though over all historically speaking, it is the freedom spirit of the Pakistani Nation. A concerted campaign against ISI and Pakistan military, amounts to degrading its centre of gravity. (After ten years of Pakistanis sacrifices in blood, treasury, infrastructure, national emotions in the so called global war on terror).

Bottom line: US should abandon attempts to divide Pakistani Nation from ISI – Armed Forces and forgo demonizing them.


Genocide in Kashmir by Indian Army has resulted in hundreds of thousands of Kashmiris killed besides thousands of Kashmiri women raped. US intervention in Bosnia, Libya and numerous other places was for much less. Unresolved Kashmir is the core issue preventing peace in South Asia. By condoning Indian war crimes (2000 plus in unmarked graves recently identified in Indian held Kashmir), US is aggravating the problem.

Bottom line: Help resolve the Kashmir issue.


The majority of Pakistanis want peace in Afghanistan. Peace cannot prevail until foreign forces leave Afghanistan, whether by agreement or other quick exodus. As long as foreign forces remain, the Afghans will resist. It is not a question of Haqqanis involvement or anyone else for that matter but of US departure.

Bottom line: US should relent and withdrawal its forces from Afghanistan. A negotiated peace agreement in Afghanistan involving Pakistan is the solution.

National Emotions

A history of US betrayal haunts Pakistani minds. The current issue is not only US walking away from Kabul but installing Indians before departure. As American drone strikes killing many innocents and attacks on Pakistani Soldiers signify US hubris, entrenching Indians in Kabul would once again prove American betrayal. If Washington does this, it will lose the Pakistani nation’s confidence. Any US or US sponsored attempt, be it diplomatic or military against Pakistan’s nukes, would end Pakistani nation’s relations with USA forever. (Lead to a conflagration and create a sea of radioactive hostility).

So far the PERCEPTION of American strategy towards Pakistan has been:

§  Patronize liberal puppet elite

§  Divide Pakistani nation

§  Demonize ISI, nuclear, military in Pakistan.

§  Support the enemies of Pakistan to destabilize and encircle it.

§  Aim to denuclearize and balkanize it.

Obviously this has resulted in the lowest level of US – Pakistan relations in history. Going further down can best be summed up by the German philosopher’s famous quote.

“When you look into an abyss, the abyss also looks into you”

Friedrich Nietzsche

The writer is a graduate of Armour School, Fort Knox USA, Army Staff College Quetta, Turkish War Academy Istanbul, War College and National Defence College Islamabad.After “Farewell to Arms” Brigadier Nadir Mir aspires to contribute for the national cause – Pakistan. He is now settled in Lahore.   This article is a cross post from his blog “PAKISTAN & GEOPOLITICS”.

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  • S U Turkman  On December 18, 2011 at 4:29 am

    Another example of what kind of illiterate Officers Pak Military creates.This is why Military should never be allowed to run any country.

    • a m malik  On December 18, 2011 at 5:59 am

      And turkey AKA Ghasi ram as an extension to your reply to Brig: Nadir it shows what kind of sell outs like you are with a fixed probe in your head(not brain- because there appears none). It goes to show that producing stooges as your goodelf, FBI and CIA are doing no favour to USA.

      For other valuable readers on this blog – what Brig Nadir has said what the thinking of an average Pakistani is. But the problem Brig Nadir is that I hear from those off Defence college that we wash our dirty linen when foreign students are also in the class? Is this true? Then what impressions would they go back and report??

    • a m malik  On December 18, 2011 at 6:05 am

      I forgot to inform you Ghasi akaTurkey, that even Capitol hill is being run by Zion dominated CIA and Pentagon. President’s face is only that of a front man..

  • Abdul Waheed Rathore  On December 18, 2011 at 5:56 am

    Can I write you direct? Rathore

  • Admiral Sirohey  On December 18, 2011 at 8:03 am

    A nation that assumes all powers and becomes hostage to a little nation that has taken control of thinking process, opinion making and finances can not but shall obey the edicts of that nation. Whose belief is that all humans are subservient to its calls and liable to be treated as it chooses. Any other nation that perceived to be a threat to it must be annihilated. The US is pursuing that path against Pakistan.

    Normal patriotic and learned Pakistanis have been aware of it from the beginning but a miniscule elitist section of its population that craved for wealth and power. The US met their wants admirably. Since 9/11, in that Pakistan had no part but has been dragged in it by its thoughtless leader that has caused an unimaginable damage in every field. The common people have been badly affected and have risen against the US and its own elitist group. The situation has gone beyond redemption. The only resort is the US withdrawal from Pakistan in totality and wait for an opportune time to re engage. Presently any reconciliation that does not meet the demand of the common man will be rejected. That will cause a turmoil.


    • S U Turkman  On December 18, 2011 at 5:53 pm

      Ad. Sirohey,
      You are wrong. Its Pak Military that thinks, even a Super Power of the world can not save Afghans from our Talibani virtual Slavery of Afghans. Its Nmak Hraam Pakistan, who’s Air Force, Navy and Military Bases were built by USA and who’s Army had only 16 Tanks before USA’s Charity started pouring in that has been at war with USA, not USA.
      Pak Per Capita Income has more than doubled only because Pakistan had just verbally agreed with USA to be against its own people, Taliban. Pak Army had agreed only to avoid being bombed to Stone Age by USA along-with its Taliban.
      We know, Foreign Exchange starving at the verge of Bankruptcy Pakistan’s Economy has suffered so much that she has $ 16 billion in F.E. Reserves, F.E. Income has tripled, imports have tripled and even Pakis riding Donkeys have Mobile Phones. Who the hell are you trying to fool here?

      • a m malik  On December 19, 2011 at 9:35 am

        Hello yeah yeah the intellectual,
        You are again upto your usual mantra.
        It seems that your history only starts with 16 tanks. Despite that your favourite Indians held back all our part of the arms and equipment , yet even without – w e wrested half of Kashmir. U know how? Because we did not have namak harams like you in the fight then. Perhaps u r the only namak khawar – but that of the FBI & CIA. Yes the oath that u took when the citizenship was bestowed on Mir Qasim’s like u – this is the mandatory condition of allegance. U step out side of the agreement- then u will be like what happened to Saddam and BB. No we had more namakkhwars and stooges for the US then – who wanted to save the world from the evil”USSR” and
        we were befooled to join them to save the world. So as to keep us on the front that your very magnanamous brothers in law – the USA started equipping us. We will pay for the bodies and they the equipment. See how kind hearted ur beloved’s are!? After they also needed some ones to do their dirty job.
        Ur dear US churns out the Taliban which the RAW fellows recruit from CAS via their consulate in the north Afghanistan and after due training and bit brain washing,are dumped to fight us with a sprinkling of genuine one’s. – labelled Pak Talibans.

  • Inam Khan  On December 18, 2011 at 8:48 am

    The core issue at present worrying Pakistanis is hegemony of India over Kashmir and Afghanistan with America trying to neutralise our nuclear arsenal.We are close to saying ‘Good Bye’ to Americans……..Inam Khan

    • S U Turkman  On December 18, 2011 at 5:56 pm

      For God’s sake, not only say Goodbye to USA but go to war with USA openly instead of keep back-stabbing like a Jackal through Taliban so, Obama’s love of Pakistan is gone and he orders bombing of your Military and Nukes to make this world a lot more safer …!

      • a m malik  On December 19, 2011 at 4:49 pm

        What a phrase! Pray tell us how a jackal back stabs. We do not know. tell us..

  • Salim Nawaz Gandapur  On December 18, 2011 at 10:17 am

    Do we seriously believe the Haqqani network can force the Us Amb. to Kabul to go a cellar during a 20 hour siege- hundreds of miles from the Durand Line. If so- USA needs to RETRAIN its Armed Forces for a few years before re- venturing into Kabul!
    Salim Gandapur

    • S U Turkman  On December 18, 2011 at 5:59 pm

      Yes, if Pak Military General Headquarter can remain in siege for 20 hours, Pak Military has no right to keep ruling Pakistan. Pak Military should stop venturing in to Afghanistan and secure its own GHQ first.

  • Parvez Amin  On December 18, 2011 at 12:04 pm

    The US got itself into this mess because of its mistaken belief that the Taliban can be defeated. I believe the US is facing a difficult situation – not Pakistan. The US can get out of its ‘difficult situation’ by going home. Pakistan cannot leave the area and will surely adjust with all neighbors, including India. If there is any US pride left, it is too tattered to display. Repeat: GO HOME. YOU ARE BEATEN. Pakistan does not need your $$$$ or your help. Apply sancitons and be as mean as you know how to be. WE WILL SURVIVE.

  • S U Turkman  On December 18, 2011 at 6:07 pm

    Yes Mr. Amin,
    USA had no idea that Pakistan, who’s Army was built by USA from level of 16 Tanks; who’s Navy, Air Force and Military Bases were built buy USA; who has lived off Charity of US Aid and Loans (on and off) since 1950’s is a ‘Nmak Hraam’ Enemy of USA and she would start back-stabbing USA.
    Mr. Amin, you do not know anything about Economics or how Monitory System of this world is being run. This is why you think, Pakistan can survive without Charity and Loans of the rich countries of the world. I guess, you have no idea, what had happened in Afghanistan, when Mollaa Omar had not only done that. If the rich countries of the world were not sending $ 200 million worth of Charity of Food every year to Afghanistan, half of Afghans would have been dead, sir.
    Is learning about facts against Islam of its just that we love to lie too much instead of learning?

  • S U Turkman  On December 18, 2011 at 7:08 pm

    And for sure, the biggest problems in South Asia are Hegemony of India and USA, not hegemony of Pak Military keeping the country backwards by keep swallowing half to 3/4th of Pak Budget every year for its expansionist designs over Indian Held Kashmir and Afghanistan. Its not at all Hegemony of Pak Military that …
    * … Pakistan has expanded more than twice her original size that she was carved out of India on 14th August, 1947.
    * … Pak Military had occupied Afghanistan and is still trying to re-occupy it.
    * … Democracy was killed and East Pakistan was attacked by it.
    * … Baluchistan has been attacked 5 times since 1947.
    * … it has ruled Pakistan 47 out of last 55 years.
    No, no. Hegemonic are India and USA trying to make Pak Military behave.
    Pak Military ZinDaahaaD …!
    Pakistan sai zinDaa Bhaag …!

  • Fahim Mirza  On December 18, 2011 at 10:19 pm

    A very rational piece of write up

    • S U Turkman  On December 19, 2011 at 12:48 am

      Oh yeah, yeah. What would USA do now?
      All Pakis hate USA and USA can not survive without their Votes. It would disintegrate without vote of Pakis. I keep wondering, when Americans know, they have been living off Pakistan since 1950’s, why they have never been thankful to Pakistan and be nice to them?

      • a m malik  On December 19, 2011 at 9:38 am

        Ur insinuations and replies reminds me of the quarrel between two old granies

  • Faisal Imam  On December 19, 2011 at 10:09 am

    point by point

    how should America befriend the people? the founders created Pakistan;they had the wisdom.They united West Pakistan under one was yahya khan(an American?) who broke the unit. The American Govt has operated in Pakistan through the Army and Pentagon;where do the people come in.the Americans last try was the K-L bill;who opposed it?the common man does not watch FOX news etc,he watches Geo,Ary etc and they are controlled and bullied by whom?
    A nation which has 30% below poverty level ,living off the earnings of the American taxpayer will be adding another 100 million in twenty years. we have neither clean water to drink nor purity of food intake,no schools to teach,no hospitals to look after the old and the needy. with one catastrophe we have the beggars bowl out in the world. we lie,we cheat and we deceive at every level.
    we have never put the people’s welfare on top priority.we need to change our priorities towards the people of Pakistan who we owe our salaries to and who we should be serving.they should not be made to serve their employees.
    Nukes. the President of Iran,in a tv interview quite rightly said “nukes do not matter as they did. if nukes are that important why did the Soviet Union with thousands of them collapse?
    nukes and nuke energy are an encumberance. The Japanese and the Russians peoples are already suffering.
    in the Pakistan scene,we are not responsible handlers of nuclear technology. our record shows we sold to Libya and Iran .What if somebody sells it to very irresponsible people who misuse it on humanity?
    I am truly worried about Chashma. what if we get a radio-active leak into the Indus and it gets polluted? the entire water supply right upto Karachi will get Polluted.this could affect half a dozen cities,tens of millions of people and its drinking water. what if Kahuta blows? Islamabad and Rawalpindi will have to suffer directly? we have made our choices. we have to bear the consequences.
    Epicentre. Pakistan Army ,intelligence Agencies and their surrogates have separated themselves from the people( they call civies) and has been quoted by two COASs who have said ‘ the Pakistan Army and the people of Pakistan ……………..’ addressing them as two different identities. even your statement shows that. my question ,are u not people of Pakistan?do u not think like a Pakistani?Are the people of Pakistan not in control of their destiny? the epicenter has to make their decisions? is this an occupation force? i think u have got it wrong and so have many others. we are one people.we are serving in different institutions which have different purposes. the person who is cleaning the floors ,pumping gas at the gas station,manning the crossroads is as important a Pakistani as the one in the Chief Justices’chair or the chief Executives’ chair or the Chief of Army’s chair.they have equal rights.Each one is a brother to the other. Remember your statements of dividing rather uniting?
    Kashmir . it is an issue which will remain in India’s problems. but then they have the same all over. what about the Nagas, bengalis,other wars being fought in India. They have 18 Official languages. they have opposing value systems. they will have these accentuating when there is economic prosperity.They should go the soviet model. so we hope.
    Pakistan should have prospered like the South Koreans. then we would not have had these problems. had we not rigged the 1964/5 election,we would not have lost East Pakistan or fought the 1965 war. after that it has been downhill. A prosperous vibrant Pakistan would have been more a deterrent for the Indians in Kashmir than what we have now.
    we have had our chance in Afghanistan through the rule of the Taliban. the world gave it to them and how did they perform? do u want to repeat it. there will be quite a few Pakistanis willing to repeat it. we can afford to keep a few million Afghan refugees,the world can no longer afford to pay for it.
    I agree that Afghanistan is for the Afghanis and nobody else. let them figure themselves out.but please do not make it their destiny to live under their lives under one-eyed jacks who are not fit to lead in the 21st century.or to lead their people into 21st century.
    i understand your thinking.i think people like u in the Army need to change the paradigm because that is the only way Pakistan will change.
    we can only wish for the freedom of thought,action,life ,liberty ,property of the people.u can make it happen.

  • shahbaz  On December 19, 2011 at 4:13 pm

    good analysis

  • Arif Khan  On December 20, 2011 at 11:48 am

    Pretty Good article , but we need to put pressure on Mullas to back off on Women Suppression and give them equal rights no matter what it says in theQuran or Bible . In the 21st century Women/Men are equal Partners Rgds Arif

    • a m malik  On December 21, 2011 at 2:42 pm

      Pl let us know what does the bible speak of Women’s rights and if you know what does the Torah or old testament speak of it ??

      • S U Turkman  On December 21, 2011 at 7:52 pm

        What the hell this has to do with what we are discussing?
        Why are you switching the subject like Mollaas?
        Jesus even stood up for rights of convicted Adulterous and stopped her been stoned to death. He never said you can have Concubines. He never said Slavery is okay. He never said Christians can have more than one Wife. Old Testament was not God’s Words and even Jews admit that so, you have no case here. What we see is, how Jews, Christians and Moslims treat their Woman. Most of Moslims treat their Wives as Sex Object and House Slave.

      • a m malik  On December 22, 2011 at 5:00 pm

        My question was for Mr Arif – ur bum chum – but u must jump in every thing which is ur concern or not. So there used to be people being stoned to death during Jesus times. You are a liar There never has been an instance that Jesus saved an adultress. Yes he my not have supported slavery and concubines – but neither did he oppose it. In fact there was no system of paid help or servant that we have now adays. You love jews – dont you? it i what is narrated in their Torah= noah was a drunkard, David committed adultery. with the wife of his army chief -oria haitti, so did solomon with sheba. For them it is ok to have intercourse with even a three year old. .
        yes the muslims according to you – consider their women as a sex object. Yes you consider all your women as holy mary. The amount of porn that goes in and the sex that the women are made to under go in the society that you love
        makes her nothing but a sex symbol. No advertisement is complete without a woman. But for you it is only the holy mary worshipping divine.

  • Mohammad Chaudhry  On December 22, 2011 at 2:02 am

    A good investigative piece by Brig.Mir for critical evaluation of ground realities.However America is least likely to let go any of the five elements of American strategy for Pakistan, listed by Mir. The only recourse for Pakistan is to learn to forego its wishful thinking and acknowldge objective realities as it’ll be naevity to presume that Indian deceit or American naevity for its geopolitical perceptions will ever vanish.All the same it was worth its salt to make Americans understand the sensitivities of Pakistanis to provide them enough food for thought,if they ever think to use it.

  • Azzam  On December 23, 2011 at 2:36 am

    Should we care if the image of the US is improved or not.

    is the Image of Pakistan is good here in the us, among own own people of Pakistan, among the nations of earth, among the Muslims.

    We worry about the US image when ours is down in the gutter.

    is there a problem with this picture?

    Best Regards;

    “Allah would never bring disgrace upon you for you maintain ties of kinship, bear people’s burdens, help the destitute, give hospitality to your guests, and help those who have been afflicted by calamities.” KhadijaRAA

    • S U Turkman  On December 23, 2011 at 3:15 am

      That’s right Azzam,
      USA should worry about her image in brains of Pakistanis because without their vote, USA can not exist. We are a Nuclear Super Power and we run this world/ Why should we worry about our image in the world because Criminal always hate Police.
      The only problem is, as US stopped sending her Charity of Aid to us, suddenly rest of the world also followed her and now our F.E. Reserves are down to $ 12.75 billion from $ 16 billion.
      “IbTeDaa A ishq hai roTaa hai keya;
      Aagay aagay dekhi A hoTaa hai keyaa”

  • S U Turkman  On December 23, 2011 at 3:23 am

    a.m. Malik’s comments in his post above are based on ignorance of Bible. I think, members of this Forum are literate enough to know this and I do not have to waste my time answering ignorant people like him..

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