are drafted to protest NATO's strike on Pakistan forces,
in Lahore, Dec. 4.
The Frontier Post,
with U.S. Base Eviction and NATO Oil Cutoff
"The strip's vacation by the only superpower of a uni-polar world is a major
success for Pakistan and will go a long way toward upholding the fundamental
prerequisite of national sovereignty - the premier national interest. … This
has come about to satisfy the angry people of Pakistan, who demand the
maintenance of their territorial integrity and national pride."
On Friday as U.S. Air Force finished
vacating the Shamsi Airbase in Washak village, about 320km southwest of Quetta,
Frontier Corps personnel arrived to take control and provide security. Seven U.S.
aircraft undertook the eviction. The base closure was ordered by the Defense
Committee Cabinet on Nov. 26, along with a permanent halt to the re-supply of
oil to NATO forces in Afghanistan in retaliation of their assault on the Salalah
check point in Mohmand Agency. That attack killed 24 Pakistan soldiers.
gave U.S. and NATO forces instructions to vacate the airfield twice before. General
Musharraf first leased the base to United Arab Emirates rulers for hunting. The
UAE later leased it out to the United States as a base for CIA-ISAF
surveillance and drone missions against militants in the Federally
Administered Tribal Areas. This sub-leasing of the strip enjoyed the complete
support of the Musharraf regime. The airbase soon came to be known for
launching unmanned drone attacks in FATA, which killed hundreds of civilians
and triggered a wave of protest so great that the government had to explain its
position in Parliament.
The Defense Committee Cabinet
and then the federal cabinet issued the vacation order on Nov. 26. Chief of
Army Staff General Kayani
met with President Zardari
and Prime Minister Gilani
after the aggression by U.S. and ISAF. It is understood that the government
yielded to military pressure when it cut off NATO oil supplies and requested
that Washington vacate the airbase within 15 days. The government announcement said
that the aggression by the United States and ISAF was an attack on Pakistan,
its sovereignty and its integrity. It is also a fact that the Shamsi Airbase had
outlived its usefulness. The U.S. and NATO had already shifted drone operations
to Afghanistan in 2009.
Still, the strip's vacation by the only superpower of a uni-polar world is a major success for
Pakistan and will go a long way toward upholding the fundamental prerequisite of
national sovereignty - the premier national interest. America's eviction from
the base will also help foster a better working relationship with Pakistan, and
assist Pakistan in fulfilling its responsibility in Afghanistan as agreed to at
the Bonn conference.
As of now, oil supplies to the
U.S. and NATO have been effectively blocked and the U.S. Air Force has vacated
the Shamsi Airbase. That means the decisions taken by the Defense Committee
Cabinet have been comprehensively implemented.
This has come about to satisfy
the angry people of Pakistan, who demand the maintenance of their territorial
integrity and national pride.
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