Sunday, February 20, 2011

The Fall of the American Empire

The current turmoil in the Arab world that shows no signs of ending has an extra dimension which is usually glossed over in the stirring debates about the valiant Arabs' determination to free themselves from dictatorship. It is the simple fact that most Arab dictators are indebted to successive American governments for their hold on power. At the height of the Egyptian uprising, when Tahrir Square was filled to overflowing with fearless men and women, and the fall of Hosni Mubarak looked imminent, it was sickening to see the faces of the hypocrites Obama and Clinton suddenly pop up on TV screens, babbling on about an orderly transition of power. The distress they felt at the impending loss of their puppet oozed out of their hypocritical words and it was obvious that their primary concern was to get the spent Mubarak quickly replaced by another yes-man. No one brought out this ugly reality better than Robert Fisk, writing in The Independent. It was a marvellous period, watching the intrepid Egyptians taking on the brutal and cunning Mubarak, and reading Robert Fisk's lucid and perceptive reports. 

So, what is happening in the Middle East today is both a push for freedom by the long-suffering Arabs and a weakening of the USA's grip on its client states. Eventually, as true democracy begins to take shape in the Arab countries, a direct clash with the Americans looms on the horizon. That kind of clash has already taken place in Pakistan, which has exposed the USA's ugly face and will, inevitably, lead to a loss of American influence in Pakistan.

Robert Fisk

The Pretender fails to get himself crowned in Pakistan

For the last three weeks an American contract killer has been languishing in prison, having murdered two young men in a run down area of Lahore, Pakistan, on 27 January.  This is an astonishing development,  coming from the land where Queen Anne [ see Queen of Pakistan ] ruled with such aplomb just three months ago. This shows that the pretender to her throne, Cameron Munter, has failed abysmally to get himself crowned king. In the space of three short weeks he has moved rather quickly from heir apparent to a figure of fun: the fool, whose job it used to be to keep the monarch entertained. Only, the people being entertained are the poor, dispossessed people of Pakistan!

But the Pakistanis have paid a heavy price for witnessing the spectacle put on by the American clowns (yes, Munter is not the only fool around!). Apart from the two men shot dead by the hired killer - who, on being arrested, described himself as a 'consultant' to the American consulate in Lahore - another young man was crushed to death as a US consulate vehicle sped to the scene of crime in a vain attempt to snatch the murderer to safety. The upshot was that the hired killer, whose name has been given as Raymond Davis, is in police custody while the would-be rescuers who crushed an innocent Pakistani have been whisked out of Pakistan, beyond the reach of law. To rub salt into the wounds, the American Consulate General in Lahore refused to hand over the rescue vehicle to the police.

In the meantime, the young widow of one of the murdered men committed suicide when it appeared that Z, Gilani, and their henchmen were up to their usual tricks of completing an underhand deal with their American paymasters at the expense of hapless Pakistanis. Married six months earlier, the dying bride told the doctors fighting to save her life that she did not expect to receive justice from the pack currently ruling Pakistan. If only she could have foreseen the public's backlash that hit the Americans and their stooges shortly after her death!

The clowns of North America

The rising public anger rattled the Pakistani government, which was under immense pressure from the Americans to offer retrospective blanket amnesty to the hired killer, effective from a date well before the murders on 27 January. The Foreign Minister, Shah Mehmood Qureshi, dared to speak the truth that diplomatic status had never been extended to Davis for the simple reason that he did not qualify as a diplomat [ever heard of a diplomat roaming around, armed with hi-tech weapons and pumping bullets into the backs of peoople?]. The response of the upstart Qureshi incensed Munter, who immediately contacted his boss, the formidable Clinton. She came down like a ton of bricks on the bewildered Qureshi who, to his credit, held firm. The angry woman cancelled her scheduled meeting with Qureshi and threatened him with serious consequences. True to her word, she and her boss Obama, got their puppets Z and Gilani to get rid of Qureshi. He was summarily kicked out as Foreign Minister and offered an inferior ministry, which he refused. Outside the government, he is proving a formidable hurdle to the machinations of the appalling Z, Gilani and their fellow conspirators.

So, the mighty Clinton had failed, too. What was left? The senators and members of the Congress in the USA, of course. A stream of warnings issued forth, telling Pakistanis to toe the line or face dire consequences. The tremulous gang of Z and Co found itself in a quandry. The case was being decided on by the courts over which the government had no control and, in any case, the people were out in force demonstrating against the suspected deal between Pakistan's puppet govenment and its puppeteers in Washington. Eventually, the super clown Obama appeared on American television and told the Pakistanis that they MUST release Davis because he was protected by "diplomatic immunity" under the Vienna conventions, murders or no murders.

Obama and the rest of his team seem quite ignorant of the new realities in Pakistan where the Judiciary is now free, and independent of the Executive. Eventually, the group of American clowns realised that if all the threats that they had issued were carried out, the harm to the USA's Afghan war would far outweigh anything they might inflict on Pakistan. That called for a change of strategy, of course! So, Senator John Kerry was despatched to Pakistan with a high-level delegation to "knock sense" into the Pakistanis. Kerry was fully aware of his government's ridiculous position - the poor man was reduced to clutching at straws by quoting from the statements of the scatter brained Fauzia Wahab who, until yesterday, was the ruling party's Secretary of Information. Kerry and his team left Pakistan with a better idea of the ground realities but still without their man.

In the comments section of my blog post "The End of Conspiracy Theories", I have given links to articles which explain the background to the lengthening spat between the USA government and Pakistani people. To learn about the latest developments, click the links below:

The Raymond Davis Fiasco
Raymond Davis - the facts
'The News International' editorial

A Trojan horse in Pakistan

Supplementing the shrieks and threats of the Clowns of North America, there have been the activities of men and women sitting in a Trojan horse stationed in Pakistan.  This group is a mix of Americans and their Pakistani stooges. For example an American-controlled publication, The Express Tribune, has started publishing biased editorials and articles which distort facts and poke fun at the Pakistani nation. Let us look at this editorial, which shamelessly distorts the facts and looks for support to the laughable Fauzia Wahab of the ruling party! 

The Tribune editorial   In the comment box I offered my observation to the effect that it was indeed a comical sight to see the editor dangling from the apron strings of Fauzia Wahab! My comment was censored.

An example of an article by a Pakistani lackey: Not for the court to decide

I left a comment wondering if some Pakistanis were determined to prove the Americans right when they humiliate Pakistanis by declaring that the latter would sell their mothers for American dollars. Again, this comment was censored.

Then there are the brainwashed and westernised Pakistanis, educated by foreigners and ignorant of their own history, culture and language. For these people, devoid of any sense of self-esteem as a Pakistani, the concept of honour - 'ghairat'  غیرت -  exists only for foreigners but not for Pakistanis. Here is one example where the writer supports the American position on Davis by poking fun at her own people:

This article is a good example of the sort of trash that people churn out when they write for money or to please others. I did leave a comment on some of the author's manic pronouncements - my comment escaped the censorial scissors presumably because my target was no longer the USA.

Was Raymond Davis taking part in a sophisticated "false flag" operation?
According to a seemingly anti-USA website, Davis's arrest has averted another "9/11" that the American CIA had conspired to launch: 
Stranger than fiction?

Tailpiece (added 3March 2011)

An article by Craig Murray, published in The Guardian on 28 February, exposes the reality of Raymond Davis with brutal clarity:

I tread with some caution in discussing the case of Raymond Davis, the CIA agent facing charges of double murder in Pakistan and the threat of the death penalty. I add my plea to the voices urging the Pakistani government to ensure Davis does not hang.
But one thing I can state for certain: Davis (as we will call him for now) is not a diplomat and does not possess diplomatic immunity. There is some doubt as to who he really is, with the charges against him in Pakistan including one that he obtained documents using a false identity.
Watching Barack Obama's presidency has been a stream of bitter disappointments. His endorsement of Davis as "our diplomat" and invocation of the Vienna convention on diplomatic relations was, in its sheer dishonesty, as sad an Obama moment as any.
As a general rule, international treaties are written in very plain language and are very accessible. That is certainly true of the Vienna convention. Unfortunately I can see scant evidence that any journalists have bothered to read it.
Leaving aside staff of international organisations recognised by the host country as having diplomatic status (and there has been no claim yet that Davis was actually working for Unicef), in bilateral diplomatic relations the provision for diplomatic immunity is tightly limited to a very small number of people. That makes sense when you consider that if Davis did have diplomatic immunity, he would indeed be able to avoid detention and trial on a murder charge. The world community is not going to make that impunity readily available.
Full diplomatic immunity is enjoyed only by "diplomatic agents". Those are defined at article 1 (e) of the Vienna convention as "the head of the mission or a member of the diplomatic staff of the mission". Helpfully the diplomatic staff are further defined in the preceding article as "having diplomatic rank". Those ranks are an ascending series of concrete titles from third secretary through to ambassador or high commissioner. Davis did not have a diplomatic rank.
But there is a second category of "administrative and technical staff" of a mission. They enjoy a limited diplomatic immunity which, however, specifically excludes "acts performed outside the course of their duties". (Vienna convention article 37/2.) Frantic off-the-record briefing by the state department reflected widely in the media indicates that the US case is that Davis was a member of technical staff covered by this provision.
But in that case the US has to explain in the course of precisely which diplomatic duties Davis needed to carry a Glock handgun, a headband-mounted flashlight and a pocket telescope. The Vienna convention lists the legitimate duties of an embassy, and none of them need that kind of equipment.
It appears in any event unlikely that Davis ever was a member of the technical staff of the embassy or consulate. Under article 10 of the Vienna convention the host authorities must be formally informed – by diplomatic note – of the arrival and departures of such staff, and as embassies under article 11 are subject to agreed numerical limits, that in practice occurs when another member of staff is leaving. If this was not done Davis was not covered even in the course of his duties.
Pakistani senior ex-military sources tell me there is no note appointing Davis as embassy or consulate staff, and that appears to pass a commonsense test – if the note exists, why have the Americans not produced it?
Finally, possession of a diplomatic passport does not give you diplomatic status all over the world.
I hope this helps clarify a position that the US government, and the media it influences, have deliberately muddied. Sadly this whole episode reflects the US's continuing contempt for the basic fabric of international law. It sits with its refusal to sign up to the international criminal court so that US citizens may not be held accountable for war crimes, with its acknowledged overseas assassination programme, its one-sided extradition treaties and claims of extra-territorial jurisdiction over offences committed outside the US.
We hoped it might get better under Obama. It is not.
"We've got a very simple principle here that every country in the world that is party to the Vienna convention on diplomatic relations has upheld in the past and should uphold in the future, and that is, if our diplomats are in another country, then they are not subject to that country's local prosecution," Obama said in a press conference. "We expect Pakistan, that's a signatory and recognises Davis as a diplomat, to abide by the same convention ... I'm not going to discuss the specific exchanges that we've had [with the Pakistani government], but we've been very firm about this being a priority."

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