It is obvious that the US is feeling a threat from the rapid rise of China. That is why the US is taking all necessary measures to resist Chinese quick development and practicing its policy of “Contain China” or “Curtail China”. Under this policy, the US is opposing BRI (Belt and Road Inititative), a mega initiative of China worth trillion of dollars investment throughout the world. More than 160 countries, regions and international organisations have recognised it and almost 90 countries are involved in BRI projects. Some of them are already enjoying the fruits of BRI.
Pakistan is one of the biggest beneficiaries of BRI. In fact, the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is one of the six planned corridors under BRI. CPEC is a flagship project and considered a role model for the rest of the world. The success of CPEC is considered the success of BRI. Due to its vital importance to the Government of Pakistan as well as the Chinese Government attaches the highest importance to it.
But on the other hand, the US is opposing it in pursuance of its anti-China policies. The US using India and some other countries to oppose CPEC. Indian Government has allocated a huge budget of worth US dollars 500 million to its notorious intelligent agency “RAW” to sabotage CPEC and target Chinese nationals and its assets in Pakistan.
But it is the first time that a senior US diplomate like Alice Wells, the acting Assistant Secretary of State for South Asia, told a conference on 21 November that the $60 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) will only profit Beijing. “The United States has warned Pakistan of the long-term risks to its economy if it embraces China’s massive infrastructure project and suggested that it should instead look to the US business model”.
She further emphasized the people of Pakistan should know the exact details of contracts with China regarding CPEC.
Yes, it is true that the people of Pakistan should know all the agreements made with all other countries and international organizations. Especially the economic aspects as well as political and strategic aspects too.
People of Pakistan should know the recent agreement with the International Monetary Fond (IMF), its political stringent terms and conditions. Pakistan was on the American side during the cold war era, people of Pakistan should know the actual agreements. Pakistan stood with America on its war on terror, what were the agreements and understanding with America, people of Pakistan are interested to know all the details.
Pakistan served the American interests for the last 7 decades for nothing??? What were the understandings between Pakistani governments and Americans for such long services?
Why the American shifted its policies suddenly in 2011 and aligned itself with India, signed “Major Defense Partner” with India, supported India politically and diplomatically against Pakistan. Provided India the latest weapons and technology, extended the heavy economic and fiscal package to India, provided them all banned and sensitive technologies, in fact, India has become the biggest beneficiary of the US assistance after Israel.
In fact, the US has taken a 180-degree turn and offered Pakistan not only a cold shoulder but written off completely. Under such circumstances, the friendship of 7 decades was ignored and put Pakistan in severe crisis. Pakistan was passing the worst ever economic crisis and shortage of electricity. The US ignored Pakistan’s interests absolutely and sided with India.
It was natural, that when China launched BRI in 2013, Pakistan welcomed and joined it immediately. CPEC was signed and today, people of Pakistan are beneficiary of CPEC’s fruits. Any criticism from America is rejected by both China and Pakistan. Pakistan is a sovereign state and has the absolute right to decide its relationships with any nation in its national interests. The US interference and warnings are un-necessary and un-acceptable by any norms of the civilized world. •
* Professor Zamir Ahmed Awan (*1962) is a sinologist at the National University of Sciences and Technology (NUST) Chinese Studies Center of Excellence, Islamabad, Pakistan. Posted to the Pakistani Embassy in Beijing as science counselor (technical affairs) from 2010-16, he was responsible for promoting cooperation between Pakistan and China in science, technology, and higher education. He is the author of numerous published works, articles and lectures.
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