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Forum LockedPAC or Pak Afghan Confederation

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    Posted: 06-Sep-2007 at 14:42

Since long I thought about this, that the only solution in the wartorn region could be the unification of Afghanistan and Pakistan.

I also came up with some analysis that said;
 
 
 
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Many foresee the eventual unification of Pakistan and Afghanistan in their entirety. Both countries have diverse populations with strong Pashtun(Afghan) minorities. Many scholars point to the fact that stability in one country is directly tied to events in the other. Both countries in fact, already share strong trade, economic, cultural, linguistic, religious, political and historical ties. They have been united in the past on several different occasions. Afghan and in particular Tajik traders and scholars regularly travelled to the Indus in ancient times and plied their trade. Scholars point out that its not a matter of if the two countries unite, but rather of when they unite as the two countries histories seem inextricably intertwinned. Such a union, would prove beneficial in many aspects. The Afghan (Pashtun) ethnic groups would finally be united but be balanced by a myriad of ethnic groups. Traditionally, when Afghans were united in a nation of their own, they have often been bogged down in internal warfare and tribal feuds. However, when part of a multi ethnic state, they have often flourished. The economic potential of such a confederation would be enormous and help propel both countries forward economically particularly for Afghanistan, but Pakistan would also benefit considerably. Such a move would also stabilize the region as a whole. Often what one country lacks, the other has, eg. Pakistan has a surplus of food while Afghanistan has shortages of foodstuffs. Afghanistan has an abundance of untapped natural resources and offers strategic depth while Pakistan often lacks them. The two countries where united as recently as the 18th century under the Afghan Empire founded by Ahmed Shah Durrani, an Afghan born in Multan, in the province of Panjab in modern day Pakistan.
 
 
Now my question is that why shouldn't it be done and I would also like to know what would you people predict of the future of such a confederation?
 
Won't stability be re-inplaced in the region? Won't the economies of both grow further more? And won't it become a strong regional power with good trading routs?
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sparten Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06-Sep-2007 at 15:08
Great idea. In practice Islamabad will probably not want even more ethnic groups, then we already have. Just the pakhtuns plz.
Not to be racist but 2/3 of the world Pakhtuns live in Pakistan, not much change, but with tajiks and the rest its a whole new ballgame. The understanding that keeps pakistan together would have to be renegotiated.
 
Also it would be disadvantagous to Pakistan especially the eastern povinces. Balochistan has never paid for itself, the Frontier rarely, FATA Northern Areas, Azad Kashmir and any shortfall is paid for by the Punjab and sometimes Sindh. yet Azad Kashmir and the Frontier, especially the latter have a huge influence in national affairs, at the cost of Sindh, which causes resentment.
 
With Afghanistan pretty much all in a shambles I don't think it is an attractive choice for Pakistan. It will have to be a situation where Islamabad is not left with the finacial cost of rebuilding Afghanistan, yet sans that such a union is not attractive for the Afghan side. This says nothing of pretty much having the renegotiate the whole Pakistani federation deal, a closed chapter since 1973 and one which nobody wants to reopen.
 
So while emotionally I think it would be a dream come true, practically I don't think its a good idea.


Edited by Sparten - 06-Sep-2007 at 15:24
The Germans also take vacations in Paris; especially during the periods they call "blitzkrieg".
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Gharanai Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06-Sep-2007 at 16:06

So you mean the fight shall go on and the great BRITAIN POLICY shall fool our people for another 100 years and the wartorn region become battle ground for the third world war (as geopoliticaly it's a region where China, Russia, USA and EU would want to control to get the upper hand).

And with saying that only Pashtuns accepted, I would then say Kabul has had more ethnic problems than ISB, so let not add on some other ethnics and Just Pashtuns and Balochs (as they are already living in AFG) which again circles around the Durand Line agenda and means no outcome.

May Allah bless these lands.... nothing else could be done.  :-(



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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote MarcoPolo Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06-Sep-2007 at 17:41
The idea of a confederation between Pakistan and Afghanistan is an ancient one and is the likely outcome of relationship of these two ''Afghan'' domains.  Even at current, the disputes between the two countries seem like a dispute between two brothers which are marred in petty politics lol! Afghan being the older brother and Pakistan the younger.   I for one, also think thats its the inevitable future of Pakistan, though many seem to think that its against Pakistans interest, this is a very short sighted analysis, because in the medium to long term its a win-win situation for both countries.  Most Pakistani, and most Afghani I have spoken to, also agree that it is in the best interest of our nations to put aside petty politics, and work for the common re-unification of Pakistan and Afghanistan.
 
 
That article scratches on the surface of several important facts which many people (both Afghan and pakistani) seem to overlook.  Due to petty local politics and foreign interference, the unification of both countries has been delayed but  I strongly believe that they will have to combine in order to stay competitive in the near future particularly if one is aware of their common history and that of the region as a whole.  Furthermore, the inherent instability associated with Afghanistan and the region in general would dissapear with a confederation with Pakistan.  Being economically sound, and thus less liable to interference, and with better inherent strengths and nation building assets and quality.  This would prove beneficial to all the surrounding countries including Iran, China, india, Central Asian republics and to the greater world at large.  Incidently, the foreign policy of Pakistan and Afghanistan would be combined allowing both regions to benefit from the extensive foreign relations of both regions.
 
 In a sense, it is unnatural for either Pakistan or Afghanistan to be independent of each other!  There will always be an unfulfilled sense in both countries until such a unification takes place.  Even at current with all the fuss about the Durand Line, much open trade, commerce, people to people contact and flow of material crosses the border at any given time.  Even with government funded projects and international pressure to help stem the flow of illicit arms across the porus border have proved to be futile.  For one, the border is extremely porus and it is impossible to patrol it.  There are already many joint familes stretched across the border bonded together by marriage, tribal/ethnic affiliation and extended family relations.   Afghanistan, has traditionally held sway over much of Pakistan up until 1762 when Ahmed Shah Abdali formerly established the country 'Afghanistan' where Panjab and Sindh where his richest provinces.  Interestingly, Ahmed Shah Abdali, was born to an Afghan family that had been settled in Panjab, many of his family and their decendents still live in the region.  In todays era, he would be referred to as a Pakistani Panjabi given current local regional politics.  Pakistani (INdus Valley inhabitants) had direct contact with Central Asia and were able expand their commerce and trade their goods as well as extend their influence to a much broader market.  Afghanistan being land locked, always sent their good south along established trade roots to be exported abroad. 
 
Furthermore, pakistan is still host to millions of Afghan refugees most of whom are born in the country and only know of Pakistan.  They are, in essence, Pakistani of Afghan decent.  Also, much intermarriage has taken place between Pakistani and Afghans in the last 30 years. Pakistan's 2nd largest ethnic group, the Pashtun, historically synonymous with being Afghan and are found in every province of the country particularly in karachi, Lahore, Islamabad in large colonies and currently have the highest birth rate of any group in the whole country.  They have come to dominate trade, commerce and the transport industry of Pakistan.  It would only make sense, that the country with the largest ethnic Afghan population (Pashtun) eventually unite with its blood brother to the west (something all Pakistani yearn for regardless of ethnicity).  An increase in multiculturalism to Pakistan and Afghanistan would be a welcomed sign, as most successful modern economies of the world are based on a healthy collection of different ethnic groups, which is why I think multiculturalism is the key for countries like Pakistan and Afghanistan. 
 
Multiculturalism has been shown to decrease inter-ethnic strife between traditionally antagonistic ethnic groups, ironically voice their frustration out on smaller less threatening groups!.  In any system, there will always be certain groups at the top, certain groups in the middle and so forth, but by increasing the ''Others'' categories of ethnic group in a joint Afghan-Pakistan confederation, these ''others'' can join up and keep any sizeable majority in ''Check''.  In Pakistan, the influence of the majority Panjabi (@ 48%) and that of the Mohajir (5%) of the population is rallying point for local domestic politics; the pasthtuns in pakistan represent around 18% of the population, where'as in Afghanistan, major control lies with the Tajik ethnic group (@25%) and other Persian speaking groups, while the Pashtuns form a slight majority at around 40-45%) and a myriad of other smaller groups having symbolic representation.  A country should never be limited in its capability by the group running it, but rather by the system in place that runs the country.  That system should work for the rule of law which would help govern the vast new territory in the confederation.
 
Many of us already share the same language, culture, dress, foods and history.  And other groups are closely similar of affiliated in one form or another.  Though they may be many vested groups who are against it for their own personal fears/issues or even politics, in the greater sphere of things, the joining of Pakistan with Afghanistan would seem like the natural outcome of relations between both countries as well as undoing the damage that colonial rulers had effected in the region. It requires the ability to look at the greater picture of things, and seeing what is beneficial for everyone.  And I agree, its a matter of when such a union is going to take place, hopefully we can see it in our time.
 
Pakistani and Afghan's should be working to further speed up the process of confederation between our two nations as it is our future, wether we would like to believe it or not.  We should work to remove any petty issues, politics, negative propoganda negatively affecting the relations of our two countries, because in essence, we are 'family'.  One needs only to look at history to see that some form of an arrangement is inevitable between Pakistan and Afghanistan
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mughal e Azam Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06-Sep-2007 at 18:55
Afghanistan - Pakistan would be a Central Asian middle power
 
Pakistan is overpopulated in the cities.
 
Kabul, Kandahar, Herat and Mazar-e-Sharif would complement Karachi, Lahore, Multan and Peshawar.
 
We can even call it Durrani Empire Redux.
Its a done deal. May this empire of our live. Jai Hind.


Edited by Mughaal - 08-Dec-2007 at 05:46
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote MarcoPolo Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06-Sep-2007 at 22:37

Interestingly, an attempt was made in the 1950's to initiate the creation of a confederation of Afghanistan with Pakistan.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote MarcoPolo Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06-Sep-2007 at 22:44
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote MarcoPolo Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06-Sep-2007 at 22:45
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote kapoor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06-Sep-2007 at 23:58
Originally posted by Mughaal Mughaal wrote:

Afghanistan - Pakistan would be a central asian middle power
 
Pakistan is overpopulated in the cities.
 
Kabul, Kandahar, Herat and Mazar-e-Sharif would complement Karachi, Lahore, Multan and Peshawar.
 
We can even call it Durrani Empire Redux.
Its a done deal. May this empire of our live. Jai Hind.
 
lol do u make anysense. how is this region part of jai hind?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pumaaa123 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07-Sep-2007 at 00:38
Atleast formation of three nations, Balouchistan, Pashtu dominated Afghan with other ethinic/tribal groups and the Punjab plus Sind pakistan should dissolve most of the hitches in the region.


Edited by pumaaa123 - 07-Sep-2007 at 00:41
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Omar al Hashim Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07-Sep-2007 at 02:31
Originally posted by kapoor kapoor wrote:

lol do u make anysense.

Personal attacks kapoor are strictly not allowed.



In this case I am in full agreement with MarcoPolo and Gharanai. I have always seen Afghanistan and Pakistan as one country divided.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote kapoor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07-Sep-2007 at 10:46
sorry, but i was only pointing out his mistake
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Leonidas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07-Sep-2007 at 11:51
sorry for being the wet blanket, has any one asked the Tadzhiks, Hazara or Uzbeks? 

Edited by Leonidas - 07-Sep-2007 at 11:52
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Gharanai Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07-Sep-2007 at 11:55
A very well analyzed and defined post dear MarcoPolo \
Now the only requirement to implement it is by eleborating it to our young generation and clean their brains set by the foriegn media, regional politics and foriegn games.
 
I don't see any of the two countries ever lived independent of each other since 1947, both requires each other in order to progress and stay in the world map.
 
I mean lets just see the condition right now that these two countries are living in. We both share economy, trade, culture, language, custom, homes, jobs in each others country. The only difference between us is a LINE drawn by enemies that splits us virtually but never we have been splited from each other practicaly.
 
I mean lets just take the example of education, Afghanistan being a wartorn country doesn't has as much professionals as Pakistan and the education standards are just getting up since some 4-5 years while Pakistan has a good education infrastructure.
This means the Afghans would be able to use that infrastructure for their benefits. Now we see the percentage of unemployement rate in Pakistan which is in high levels, while the youth have the knowledge but has no where to implement it, by this unification there would be a great apportunity for them to obtain good jobs in Afghanistan which requires professionals (right now if we see around 40-50 percent of the young Afghan professionals have taken their higher education in Pakistan and are having a nice rule in countries progress and developement).
 
On the other side the un explored sites of natural resource of Afghanistan could be very much handy in the progress of the Confederation, especially the energy resources (oil and gas) which is said to be amongst world's biggest un explored resources, while the world is running short on these resources.
Along site that the uranium is also one of the most valueable resource in Afghanistan which is also to be taken out.
 
Now there are lots and lots of other resources that Pakistan has got in the troubled areas of Balochestan, which by could be taken out for usage if the region is stable.
 
But you see, once in Afghanistan I was talking to a very educated, noble and aged Afghan professor of history and politics, it was him whom told me a phrase that I will always remember and try to avoid.
He told me that;
 
 "The secret behind the Britain's vast Colonization was their policy of Divide and Rule while the secret behind the succes of American Imperialism is the policy of "In order to break down a tree you have to take out its roots.
Now you (young generation) my son are the roots of a nation (the tree) and its you whom they want to take out by making you involved in the many new ways of entertainment and way of life, which overtakes your power of thinking, and makes you think that what ever they (Imperials) do is the right thing done."
 
Those were the words of a man who knew something and had seen much and that was the day that made me work to stand against this policy and enlight as many youngs of this policy as I could.
 
Know all what I want it to think and judge it yourself, that isn't it a policy of the imperials enjected to our youngs to stand against each others interest and neglet the past we (Afghans and Pakistanis) shared and by past I don't mean a 60 years but over thousands of years that we have shared togather and are still doing it but are not menting it.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Gharanai Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07-Sep-2007 at 12:02
Originally posted by Leonidas Leonidas wrote:

sorry for being the wet blanket, has any one asked the Tadzhiks, Hazara or Uzbeks? 
 
Yes, dear Leonidas,
I being an Afghan know and have lots of friends of Tajik, Hazara, Uzbek and other ethnics of Afghanistan, and when ever I have discussed such a case with them they have showed optimism.
 
You see whether he is Tajik or Pashtun, Hazara or Baloch, Uzbek or Sikh, Hindu or Muslim they are all AFGHANS and when it comes to the prosperity of the country Afghanistan the true Afghan stands with the solution that is for the prosperity, developement, stability and bright future of Afghanistan, as it is the country of all of us not of a specific ethnic.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote MarcoPolo Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07-Sep-2007 at 21:03
Agreed Gharanai, certain issues are for the greater good and are struggles which we must endeavour to decimate amongst our fellow countrymen many of whom, cannot think beyond 5-10years, or have been blindsighted and unaware of our once great history. We need to realize that our destiny and future will only be possible within the confines of a confederation and the joining of, IN THEIR ENTIRETY,  Pakistan with Afghanistan.  The sooner this is realized, the better it will be for the people of both countries, and more importantly, the region as a whole as a stable Pakistan/Afghanistan is in the interest of all nations of the region. 
 
Originally posted by Gharanai Gharanai wrote:

 
 "The secret behind the Britain's vast Colonization was their policy of Divide and Rule while the secret behind the succes of American Imperialism is the policy of "In order to break down a tree you have to take out its roots.
Now you (young generation) my son are the roots of a nation (the tree) and its you whom they want to take out by making you involved in the many new ways of entertainment and way of life, which overtakes your power of thinking, and makes you think that what ever they (Imperials) do is the right thing done."
 
Those were the words of a man who knew something and had seen much and that was the day that made me work to stand against this policy and enlight as many youngs of this policy as I could.
 
Those are some deep well worded analogy wrora, just reading it was inspirational enough for me, I can only imagine how it would of sounded  on hearing it straight from the professor's mouth!  Truly a gem!
 
About the concern about the 'other' ethnic groups that leonidas raised, You have to understand, that a confederation is nothing new, it is a return to the ORIGINAL AFGHANISTAN, a natural process so to speak, one in which all Afghan groups share a common interest in and failure to address this issue, will result in the continued instability of both countries and an abnormal existance so to speak.  Neither country has ever existed without the other.  The influence of one on the other is an ancient one trancending political boundaries, that despite 60 years of seperation, is stronger than ever.  Much of Pakistan's cultural history is Afghan in origin, much Afghanistan's successes and greatest achievements was when it encompassed its current boundary with that of Pakistan especially the breadbasket regions of SIndh and Panjab.  While politically marred Afghan and Pakistani government have often squabbled as sibbling do, the people of both countries have a special relationship with one another, we dont consider each other from different countries, but come to think of it, rather from different provinces or regions of the same state.  I personally have 2 sibblings married to Afghans.
 
About the position of the other's in the restoration of Afghanistan, they'd would also be great benefactors of the confederation as a large population of ethnic Tajiks live in Pakistan.  Furthermore, many Tajiks (from Tajikistan) have settled in Pakistan's Northern Areas (particularly around Ishkuman) and about 18% of the Afghan refugees in Pakistan are of Tajik decent; this does not include the Pakistani's  and even Mohajir's who claim Tajik decent either who would be reconnected with their ancestral cousins.  A similar situation exists with the Turkomens, as well as with the Hazara's, who's largest concentration outside of Afghanistan is in Pakistan, where many have been established for several centuries now.  Hazara's already serve in Pakistan's army and police force in considerable numbers.   A confederation would bolster these 'other' ethnic groups and would work in their favour. 
 Also, if I may add, the irony was, that during the time when Afghanistan and Pakistan were one nation, it was these other ethnic groups that held considerable influence over the vast area, and for the most part, it was their culture which predominated over that of the majority population be they Pashtun, Panjabi or Sindhi.  The Lingua Franca of Pakistan up to about 1849 (the dismantling of the Sikh empire by the British), was Persian -  the language of the minority 'others'
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Gharanai Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08-Sep-2007 at 15:25
@MarcoPolo
 
Yes dear, it truely was one of the most  amazing sentences that I have heared since long.
Now you see it realy depends on the understanding and analogy of the person hearing/reading it that in which maner he/she takes, some will just say "What a rubbish" (personal experience) and others will appreciate.
That just shows the thinkability and mind maturity of the person.
 
And one the second paragraph I would just add that maybe it was not intension of Leonidas (with all respect to Leonidas' comment as he didn't mean it) but is the words just used to saparet and divide people of a Nation by usage of ethnicity and geoghrapical locality and that approach has proved to be one of the strongest power of Perangyan ever.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote CHAUDRY Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08-Sep-2007 at 20:11

Nothing wrong with the idea, but as spartan pointed out earlier, not likely to happen.

 

Too many ethnicities, for now, and also gharanai, u try to convince both can get better by benefitting from each other.

But the fact is, for now, afghanistan has not much to offer to pakistan (i will have to put a questionmark on ur claims of vast unexplored natural resources). Still that is not a reason for not forming a union, sad thing is though, as u will know well, it is not the pakistani's who would oppose to such a proposition much, but the afghan's. Im talking about public opinion from 1947 onwards, to date.

 

U said ur other afghan friends, tajiks, hazara's, uzbek, have cited their optimism. Sadly they don't seem to behave that way generally.

Once ur fellow countrymen are in the west, via pakistan, they only talk "not nice" about my country.

I will honestly tell u i didn't know much about this hate ur countrymen carry towards pakistan, untill they started popping up, here. Before that i didn't hear from one pakistani about our difficult relationship, they always rejoiced themselves, thinking about the defeat of russia in afghanistan, and how we together, pakistan,afghanistan, took care of that problem.

It was only till i met ur first afghan- pashtun, educated in india, fellow countrymen, i was astonished.

 

Bottom-line : very much surprised, an afghan did this proposition about uniting, rather than incorporating.

 

no comment
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ConradWeiser Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08-Sep-2007 at 20:36
I also wonder whether it will work.
 
But the uniting of Pakistan and Afghanistan would be such a wonderful model for other peoples torn apart from eachother by European imperialism.
 
If Pakistan and Afghanistan could unite, they could be the model for the rest of the world, most importantly Africa, who has arguably suffered the most from imperialism.
 
Tribes that were cut in half and forced to fight each other by European powers would slowly unite, and some of the violence plaguing the continent would be suffocated.
 
As unlikely as unification seems right now, I would fully back the uniting of Pakistan  and Afghanistan, and even help spur a movement for it, if given the chance.
Another year! Another deadly blow!
Another mighty empire overthrown!
And we are left, or shall be left, alone.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Partisan Rebel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08-Sep-2007 at 21:46
@CHAUDRY and pretty much anyone who is having problems grasping this novel concept...

What we are dealing with here is an idea that clearly diverges from or perhaps has not really been considered by mainstream thought in Afganistan/Pakistan.

It is the small minority of innovative thinkers that lead a country towards positive change. Clearly the percieved experience of people and their world view is fickle at best. Chaudry mentioned that Pakistanis united with their brothers in Afghanistan to drive out the Russians, how quickly and how divergently does the memory of this triumph change once the event became tainted by a negative experience. The power vacuume left by the Russian withdrawl from Afghanistan unfortunately created a conflict ridden enviromnment of which obviously did not appeal to certain minorities, thus the negative impression left towards Pakistanis in general.

About what Afganistan can offer Pakistan, my opinion is that one cannot look at the concept of unification (reunification) from one particular angle. More productively, one should look at what both countries can offer eachother - and that is political stability, which was already mentioned. Also economic viability, in a global market the Union would offer a wealthly and lucrative labor market with access to and transit routes connecting neighbouring countries...the possibilities become listless once one considers them.

My question or comment is that, myself, living in Canada have been previlaged to live in a modest plural society. My cultural world view is seen through this lense, to acknowledge and respect cultural differences. My feelling is that for such a union to flourish, there needs to be an emphasis in Pluralism in a Secular, Democratic Society with an emphasis on the Rule of Law balanced by political accountability.
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