And America Apologizes …
‘My Name is Khan and I am not a Terrorist’ … Indian superstar Shah Rukh Khan had delivered these lines in his film My Name is Khan that was released a couple of years back. Yet he had to repeat the very lines again when he was detained for the third time on his arrival in USA. The scene was at the White Plains airport in New York where the immigration authorities didn’t listen to the please and detained him for a couple of hours without any reason.
Although SRK was travelling in a private plane and was accompanied by Nita Ambani, wife of industrialist Mukesh Ambani, his visit was a private one. He was to deliver a speech at the prestigious Yale University which had named him the Chubb Fellow. He delivered his speech after which Yale officials apologized for the mistreatment he received at the hands of immigration officials.
Even then, the Indian Government demanded the US authorities to issue an apology, which they did within 24 hours. Strange, isn’t it! Strange because SRK was not a Head of State, yet the government of India stepped in and finally got what they wanted. Strange because it has been nearly 6 months since the Salala Incident and American officials haven’t even shed a tear, let alone issue an apology. Strange, because Pakistan’s government took measures that led to the evacuation of Shamsi Airfield and closure of the NATO supply line, yet America didn’t bow down from its position as the King of the World, and say sorry for killing up to 24 Pakistani soldiers and wounding 13 others.
Weren’t the Pakistanis who were martyred at the military check posts humans? Didn’t they deserve to live their lives fully which was cut short for no reason? Weren’t they serving their country by leaving their families and defending the borders in America’s War of Terror? I believe they were being made to act as Allies by the Pakistani government, and their death is as big a fault of Americans as it is of our government.
The government did close Shamsi Airfield and cut off NATO supply, but was that enough? Drone attacks have become the norm of the day and kills many people, mostly those who have ‘committed’ the crime of living in the vicinity. Has America apologized for their deaths? Have they even considered them humans? No. They consider them collateral damage and that’s how they view all Pakistanis, be it you or me!
Most Pakistanis hate America because of what it has done to us in the last 10 years. Be it Raymond Davis who murdered a couple of Pakistanis yet left after paying diyat, or those responsible for the Salala incident, none have felt sorry for their acts. Should the Prime Minister not have conveyed the feelings of his countrymen in his meeting with the US President Barack Obama? He could have asked them to show remorse for what America has been doing to its most faithful ally! People might argue that he had conveyed the message but I know he didn’t, and even if he did, he didn’t do it strongly enough. Had his stand been as defiant as his Indian counterpart, there is no way America would NOT have apologized for what it did intentionally.