Republic of Paranoidistan – where the US is out to defang nukes, blow up cities, steal babies and more….’s Cyril Almeida did an opinion piece last Sunday about Pakistan’s nutty relationship with the United States. A voice of sanity in a country slouching towards being “unfriended” in the international community.

What are these nasty things that the US has wanted Pakistan to do?

Help stabilise Afghanistan by preventing the resurgence of the Afghan Taliban. Deny space to militants seeking sanctuary in Balochistan and Fata. Roll back the infrastructure of jihad that has proliferated in Pakistan.

Which part of this is supposed to hurt Pakistan?

No, no, we are told, Pakistan exists in a tough neighbourhood and it has to do whatever’s necessary to protect itself. The Trojans had nothing on the Americans; everything they say and demand is really designed to undermine us.

But if becoming a global hub of jihad and all things regressive and parochial is what’s supposed to keep us safe, then perhaps we are better off not being safe.

The further down the rabbit hole of paranoia and insecurity you go, the more peculiar it all becomes.

What about Raymond Davis and all those contractors running around Pakistan, the self-styled defenders of Pakistan argue.

Surely, they are here to defang our nukes, blow up cities and steal babies.

And didn’t the OBL raid prove that the Americans will do anything to embarrass Pakistan and nothing to treat it like an ally?

Yet, here we are, a decade down the road, several months after we closed the supposed lifeline to Afghanistan, and the US is still looking to engage Pakistan.

India, the one we feared would team up with the US in Afghanistan, has not taken over Afghanistan yet.
Perhaps it’s too late in the game for Pakistanis to wrap their heads around the idea that the US isn’t the Big Bad Wolf that they’ve been told it is.

But we could do ourselves a favour and begin to realise that Pakistan, as articulated by the paranoid and the insecure, is a Danger To Itself.

Continue reading, The Big Bad Wolf.

An FSO recently wrote about an interesting Q&A following a lecture on U.S. history somewhere in Pakistan. Since we cannot tell anymore what topics make bloggers meatballs for State Department tigers, we will omit the link, but here is an excerpt:

“[I]s there anything you’d like to ask us?”

“Yes, loads.”

“Great!  Go ahead.”

“You were evil to go into Afghanistan and Iraq.”

“Uh… that’s not a question.  Do you have a question about U.S. history?”

“Oh, sorry — I meant, ‘Doesn’t U.S. history point to the fact that you were evil to go into Afghanistan and Iraq?”

“Well, no — it doesn’t point to that.  What are your other questions?”

“They’re pretty much all variations on that theme.  Hey, could I have a picture with your hair?  It looks just like Barbie’s.”

Wait — maybe in addition to nuclear intentions, blowing up cities and stealing babies, sending officials with Barbie-like hair is also part of the plan?
Domani Spero