Pakistan has, since its birth, been faced with one crisis after another. But of all of them, the present one is perhaps the most serious, both as regards its nature, and its possible consequences. Without doubt, we are in the vortex of grave historic events, in which the difference between a right and a false move might well mean the difference between survival and disaster. The crisis which we face today, however, is but the reflection of a world torn by a relentless conflict of ideals. Instead of generating hope and providing for an easing of international tensions, the Titans, through their animosity, are leading the world to the brink of total annihilation.
It has been said of great historic figures that they stride the world to make epochs, to bless, confuse or appeal. May I ask what kind of epoch, are the great figures of the present day about to make? In a matter of minutes, cities can be destroyed and an entire countryside laid waste.
For fifteen years the great Powers have talked of disarmament, but with what result? Not a single division has been disbanded, not a single weapon destroyed. Disarmament, like peace, must begin in the minds of men. That process has yet to start. Therefore, to appeal to the nations of the world to lay aside their arms is futile. Across our own borders, we see a stampede towards increasing-national armaments.
As is well known, people in the under-developed countries are on the verge of starvation. That being so, to dissipate whatever resources they have in revengeful warlike ventures will bring no good to these teeming millions. They dream of new vistas of prosperity which oppressive colonial rule had denied them for centuries.
The present phase is thus one of danger as well as of opportunity. There is myopia and madness enough to bring about utter ruination. But we can still avert the catastrophe and our dreams of a great and glorious future for our people and for others can still be realized.
A united Pakistan can make an important contribution to peace in our region and to a better life for all peoples. Shall we have the will and courage to do that? This is a moment of agonizing reappraisal. At this moment we cannot isolate our thoughts from the Sino-Indian conflict in which are involved more than a thousand million people.
From time immemorial, there have been two ways, and there can be only two ways of settling disputes, namely: (a) war, and (b) peaceful means. The Charter of the United Nations makes it obligatory on all states to resolve their disputes by peaceful means.
In the event of a conflict between the great Powers, a resort to arms must defeat the very purpose of going to war. For with the present precarious balance of power; described by Sir Winston Churchill as the balance of terror, there can be neither victor nor vanquished. But, in actual fact peaceful procedures are the only sensible ones also for the settlement of disputes between lesser Powers. This is precisely what has been suggested to India by the Chinese Prime Minister, not once, not twice, but repeatedly.
To our utter astonishment, instead of accepting this as the only sane course open to men of goodwill, India is persisting in the folly of whipping up frenzy against its neighbour, a colossus that cannot be destroyed, a neighbor that only asks for the rectification and adjustment of its borders, as a sovereign equal and not as a colonial vassal. China’s call for the demarcation of the Sino-Indian boundary is not a capricious act. In that sense, it is unlike the ways followed by imperialism since the map of Europe was redrawn at the great Congress of Vienna in 1815 to satisfy the personal ambitions of rulers and the territorial ambitions of powerful nations. I shall revert to the Indo-Chinese conflict a little later. At this stage I should like to say a few words about foreign policy in general.
The foreign policy of a nation is a manifestation of its sovereignty. If a people enjoy all power, except the right to conduct foreign relations, it cannot be regarded as independent. For this reason, people take special pride and interest in their foreign policy. It is the visible aspect of a country’s independence.
Stability of government and its concomitant, continuity of policy, are more important in the realm of external affairs than in that of internal affairs.
This does not mean that foreign policy should not be dynamic. It only means that it should not change abruptly. If national interests so demand, foreign policy must change; but the change must be orderly. The shift should be executed gradually, without violent fluctuations like autumn changing into winter or winter into spring.
In fifteen years, ever since independence, Pakistan’s foreign policy has passed through three important phases: Phase I marked an attempt to establish the credentials of Pakistan’s statehood in the face of massive Indian propaganda that Pakistan was a monstrosity and a transient phenomenon. International recognition in its fullest sense was sought and obtained during those agonizing years. But, notwithstanding recognition, the country remained isolated. Taking advantage of that isolation, India, without completely satisfying its gargantuan territorial appetite, swallowed up Hyderabad, Junagadh and a good part of Kashmir.
Phase II saw an attempt to create and establish solidarity with the Islamic world. Considerable misunderstanding arose because of the naivety and extravagance of some of the gestures made by us to achieve this end. We, as a new nation, were not fully versed in the complexities and nuances of international affairs. If our approach had been a measured one, cautious and dignified, the resultant misunderstandings, to use a better word than suspicions, might not have been so harmful. We tried to over-simplify a complex problem. This was the painful period of our greatest disillusionment.
Relying too literally on the Islamic precept that all Muslims are brothers, we sought to create a brotherhood of Muslim peoples at a time when the force of Arab nationalism was in full flood; and its ideological basis was different from that of our own nation. The Arab States were under various types of political regimes, and were divided amongst themselves. They could not unite even in the face of the Israeli menace. How then could they have been expected to collaborate with the new-born non-Arab nation of Pakistan in the pursuit of an ethereal ideal?
Pakistan came into being in 1947 and Israel was established in 1948. The word “partition” became poison to the Arabs. Intensive propaganda was unleashed in the Arab nations to the effect that the British, out of vicious parting spite and in accordance with their old policy of “divide and rule”, sought to lacerate the Arab world, in a manner similar to what they had done in India. This propaganda, although wholly false, did create in certain Arab circles a resentment against the division of the sub-continent and, consequently, against Pakistan.
Pakistan, however, made strenuous efforts to create goodwill in the Arab world. Our endeavors in the cause of the Arab peoples are seldom remembered. Repeatedly, we are reminded of the blunders committed by Pakistan during the Suez crisis. It is relevant that this only flaw in our policy towards the Arab States came at a time when internal confusion in Pakistan had reached its high water mark. That flaw has now become the cause of permanent resentment and slander against Pakistan. This, notwithstanding the fact that the balance-sheet with Suez on the debit side is wholly favorable to Pakistan. I beseech you to note the significant contribution Pakistan has made to the cause of the Arab people:
a) Pakistan was the most eloquent opponent of the State of Israel and, to this day, we have refused to have any dealings with that State. On the other hand, India, the neutral friend of a powerful neutral Arab country, has considerably improved its relations with Israel;
(b) Our continued political, moral and financial support to the cause of the Palestine Arab refugees; and
(c) Our endeavors in the United Nations for the independence of Libya, Somalia, Eritrea, Morocco, Tunisia and, finally, our support for the independence of Algeria.
It has been said that our role in the Algerian crisis should have been more forthright. There must be some consistency in our thought and action. We have always said that Kashmir was the most fundamental question for Pakistan. At the same time, some people wanted us to jeopardize our position about Kashmir in the Security Council, of which France is a permanent member, by giving recognition to Algeria. Even if the United Nations alone cannot settle the Kashmir dispute, the question is, nevertheless, pending before it. For the sake of argument, suppose we had given de facto recognition to Algeria three years earlier than we did, would that have brought freedom to Algeria? If our recognition had any chance of preventing further bloodshed, we might have taken the risk for the sake of the great and heroic people of Algeria. But such was not the case. Despite our high stake in the favorable disposition of the Security Council, in which France has always given Pakistan unequivocal support, we incurred the risk of alienating France by recognizing the Provisional Government when Algeria needed it most. And this we did much before it was recognized by India, a country which proclaims itself to be the champion of moral causes.
The Muslim world is not confined to the Arab States. It includes Turkey, Iran, Malaysia, Indonesia, the countries of the Maghreb and many other countries of Africa. Most of these countries were themselves going through a metamorphosis. In their effort to survive and reconstruct their national life, they could not hope to draw much strength from our people, suffering from the same problems as themselves.
We had to adjust our approach not only to the rivalries of the Arab States inter se but also to the Arab-Turkish and the Arab-Iranian tensions—tensions which are deeply rooted in history.
Basically, the forces of nationalism clashed with the spirit of resurgent Islamic sentiment that flowed from the new State of Pakistan. Besides, we were so wholly beset by our internal problems that we could not make a full effort in pursuit of the grandiose mission of creating a fraternal rallying centre for the Muslim States. Had we succeeded, it might have been the greatest development in contemporary international relations. However, the irresistible and irrepressible forces of nationalism burst forth like a mighty flood, sweeping all before it.
We succeeded, nevertheless, in evoking sympathy and support in the Muslim countries of Iran and Turkey. But, in these two countries also, the drive towards modernism has brought about conflicts between orthodox and progressive forces, so much so that Islam as a political factor does not count in either of them.
Our friendship with the great people of Turkey and Iran is something highly significant. These countries have been our steadfast friends in all our difficulties and we deeply value the warm feelings which exist between their people and ours.
Before proceeding to the third phase, I shall make a brief reference to the Foreign Office. Many uncharitable attacks have been made on the Foreign Office for its alleged failure to project the proper image of Pakistan in the Muslim world.
It is admitted that the Foreign Office suffers from certain obvious limitations. It must not, however, be forgotten that, in this shrinking world of ours, in which communications have reached a point of near perfection, there is little scope for ambassadors and envoys plenipotentiary to bring about a decisive change in the attitudes of the countries to which they are accredited. In this jet age, distance is no longer a factor. The ambassador has been short-circuited by direct links between heads of governments and heads of states. In modem diplomacy, the role of the ambassador does not have the importance which it had in the past, when ambassadors were allowed to act on their own authority and initiative. Today they exercise only a marginal influence on the attitudes of foreign governments. They are no longer expected to take independent decisions. They merely communicate the policy of the government they represent to the government to which they are accredited. It is, therefore, the foreign policy of a country which is of supreme importance.
During the last four years, I have had considerable dealings with The Foreign Office. I have on two occasions led our Delegations to the United Nations and have represented Pakistan on several important missions. On these occasions I have sought to establish personal contacts with most of our foreign service representatives. I have had the opportunity to observe their work closely.
In my opinion, there are a number of incompetent persons in the foreign service and if it were in my hands, I would have sent them packing long ago. Perhaps, that day might still come. Having said this, I should like to state emphatically, that by and large, our foreign service is the cream of the country’s public services. Individuals are not chosen by subjective procedures; they are chosen on the basis of an examination of a high standard. Those selected for the foreign service are generally those who top the list of successful candidates. It is by this criterion alone that we have built up our foreign service. If there is something wrong with the foreign service, which represents the highest intellectual standards of the country, then there is something wrong with those standards. It is not proper to generalize and put too much blame on the Foreign Office and those who represent Pakistan abroad. Most of them are working under very difficult conditions. Many of our young men, who are talented and dedicated, would be a source of pride to any country. I have seen some of them working under great stress and strain and doing excellent work. In some places, a single individual acts as a cipher officer, an office assistant as we’ll as a diplomat. It would not be fair, therefore, to brand the whole Foreign Office as inefficient and incapable. Apart from the fact that such condemnation is not justified, it would have the effect of demoralizing our foreign service most of whose officers are doing splendid work abroad.
I now return to the third phase of our country’s foreign policy. After having exhausted our natural urge to bring about solidarity in, the Muslim world, we sought to break our isolation by linking ourselves with the West. To that end we began negotiations with the West. When these had advanced sufficiently, on 17th November 1953, The Government of the United States of America formally informed the Government of India that it was considering a Military Assistance Agreement with Pakistan in order to strengthen the free world’s defences in South Asia. As a result of this development, we came to be associated with the three Muslim States of Iran, Turkey and Iraq—the only Arab State—in a pact of mutual cooperation signed between Iraq and Turkey in February 1955, and acceded to by Pakistan in September 1955.
This was a turning point in our history. The critical and dangerous period of our isolation was over and we were now aligned with nations which were prepared to come to our assistance in the event of Communist aggression against us.
The full measure of an achievement can be judged fairly and accurately by its effect, such as satisfaction among one’s friends and anger or fear among one’s adversaries. What was the reaction in India to our joining the Pacts? The whole Indian nation went hoarse in condemning Pakistan’s alliance with the Western countries.
I shall refer only to a few of the utterances in this connection, of the Indian Prime Minister, Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru. In a speech in November 1953, he said:
“It is a matter of the most intense concern to us and something which will have more far-reaching consequences on the whole structure of things in South Asia and specially on India and Pakistan. I am rather surprised, therefore, that this very major development should take place in the way in which apparently it is taking place.
“It is open to Pakistan to have bases, to have foreign arms, to have anything it likes on its territory. It is even open to it to give up its independence, if it so chooses, or to limit it; but we are concerned with the consequences of these pacts and, therefore, necessarily we are watching these developments with the greatest care.”
On 22nd March 1954, Mr. Nehru was quoted as saying:
“I venture to say that it is not easy to imagine even any aggression on Pakistan, as things are, either from that great country, China, or from India, regardless of motives. How then does this question of aggression arise suddenly and is made a pretext for this kind of military aid being given? From Pakistan’s side I am only unaware of any possible reason which I can understand.
“For my part I would welcome the strengthening of Pakistan economically and even militarily in the normal sense. If they build themselves up, I can have no complaint. But this is not normal procedure. It is a very abnormal procedure, upsetting normalcy; and insofar as it upsets normalcy, it is a step away from peace.
“Now the President of the United States has stated that if the aid given to Pakistan is misused and directed against any country for aggression, he will undertake to thwart such an aggression. I have no doubt that the President is opposed to aggression. But we know from past experiences that aggression takes place and nothing is done to thwart it. The military aid given by the United States to Pakistan is likely to create conditions which facilitate and encourage aggression.
“As I have said repeatedly, this grant of military aid by the United States to Pakistan creates a grave situation for us in India and for Asia. It adds to our tensions; it makes it much more difficult to solve the problems, which have confronted India and Pakistan.”
On 22nd March 1956, Mr. Nehru in a speech in the Indian Lok Sabha, stated that while a war between India and Pakistan was unlikely, one could not ignore the possibility of some emergency arising. Pakistan, he said, had received military aid and this posed a terrible problem for India from the point of view of the diversion of her resources from development to military needs. Mr. Nehru said that he was intervening in the debate to draw the attention of the House to certain broad and basic principles underlying defence. He had noted in the course of the debate a certain anxiety and concern about recent events, “amounting to almost an apprehension and fear lest India might be attacked by our neighbor country (Pakistan) and we might not be ready for it. It is perfectly true that the situation today in regard to the defence of India has been very much affected by this factor of military aid coming in from a great country. We have to view this situation, therefore, in this new light.”
By way of a final instance, I shall refer to Mr. Nehru’s remarks in the Rajya Sabha on 6th March, 1959, when he is reported to have stated:
“I would like to add that during the past few weeks when talks about this pact have been going on, we have drawn the attention of the U.S. Government to our concern about such pacts and more specially the prospect of this agreement leading to greater military aid to Pakistan, and even otherwise affecting us adversely ... We have been assured all along by the representatives of the U.S. Government that this (aid) was aimed . . . against communist aggression ...
“We have been specifically assured that this agreement (the bilateral agreement between the United States and Pakistan) cannot be used against India . . . We have repeatedly pointed out that the United States defence aid to Pakistan encourages the Pakistan authorities in their aggressiveness and increases tension and conflict between India and Pakistan ...
“We welcome the assurance given to us by the United States authorities but aggression is difficult to define, and Pakistan authorities have in the past committed aggression and continued it ... It is difficult for us to ignore the possibility of Pakistan utilizing the aid received by it from other countries against India, even though those other countries have given us clear assurances to the contrary.”
Let us now turn to foreign policy in the context of the present international situation. This situation is such as to afford us little scope for maneuverability. In the formation of foreign policy today there are three courses open to nations:
(1) Alliance with the Western democracies;
(2) Alliance with or, to be more accurate, subservience to Communist states; and
(3) An un-coordinated fraternization with the neutralist states. Since the end of the Second World War, despite the strenuous efforts made to strengthen the rule of law through the United Nations, there has been a definite bipolarization of power. The world has been split into two camps—the Communist and the non-Communist. During the last fifteen years, on more than one occasion, the world has come to the brink of disaster. The intense rivalry between the two power blocs is leading humanity towards a dangerous crisis and confronting it with the awesome possibility of a nuclear war. Should such a war break out, civilization will be in ashes. Ideologies and social systems will form part of the debris. The endeavors that have so far been made to abate this rivalry between the blocs have not succeeded.
The United Nations is still the most encouraging instrument of peace in the hands of man. Despite its inadequacies, it has, on numerous occasions, interposed its pacifying counsel to save the world from scourge of total war, as in the case of Suez, Berlin, the Congo and, most recently, Cuba. In fact, its intervention in such circumstances has become essential for the resolution of disputes between nations.
In recent years a third force has been evolving. It claims to act as a restraining influence on the passions of the major rivals. This is the force of the neutralist states whose numbers are growing. But they lack intrinsic strength and the means to transform their nebulous ideals into a bridge between the two nuclear colossuses.
I have described the third course as ambiguous because the neutral states have no positive mission backed by a readiness to assume the multilateral obligations, which that mission would entail. They claim to dispose of each issue on its merits. But in assuming this posture, they are often divided amongst themselves. Even collectively, they are not sufficiently powerful to play a decisive role in the settlement of disputes. More important, the fact is that neither the Soviet Union nor Communist China recognizes as final the validity of the role of this so-called third force. Stalin called it a deception. Mao Tse-tung has often said that a third road does not exist. “To sit on the fence,” he said as far back as July 1948, “is impossible. A third road does not exist. Not only in China but also in the world, without exception, one either leans to the side of imperialism or socialism.”
It is only in recent years that the pragmatic Mr. Khrushchev, acting on Lenin’s strategy of “two steps forward, one step back” has eulogized the role of neutralism in the quest for peaceful co-existence. He has, consequently, been accused by Communist China of a revisionist performance. In the United States of America, John Foster Dulles, the astute architect of contemporary American diplomacy, termed neutralism as “immoral”. In the United States also it is but recently that Harvard intellectuals the Kissinger’s and Schlesinger’s, have deviated from the traditional path, to lionize neutralism, much to the detriment of America’s long-term vital interests.
Among the neutralist countries, the role of India, up to the present at least, has been the most active. India has been the piper that has played the tune which, on the whole, has sounded jarring only to the West.
The main driving force behind a nation’s foreign policy is its urge to maintain its independence and territorial integrity. Pakistan, situated as it is, surrounded by hostile neighbours, must seek arrangements guaranteeing its territorial integrity and permitting it to preserve its distinct ideological personality. The degree of a nation’s external dependence is conditioned by its internal strength and stability, the vitality of its institutions and the strength of its national purpose. Time and again, we have been told that our alliances with the West have robbed us of our independence. This is not correct.
In the present international balance of power, there are hardly three or four states which can claim to be sovereign in the absolute sense of the term. Furthermore, the progress of international law has made it incumbent even on these few states to shed a part of their sovereignty. Membership of the United Nations entails far-reaching restrictions on the sovereignty of its member states.
The Charter of the United Nations calls upon its members to renounce some of the most important aspects of the classical form of sovereignty, e.g., the right to make war. Article 2, Paragraph 4 of the Charter declares:
“All Members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state, or in any other manner inconsistent with the Purposes of the United Nations.”
The member states are, therefore, obliged not to resort to force or the threat of force. They are called upon to accept a settlement of their international disputes by peaceful means.
Incidentally, I should like the House to note that this is the very principle which India has, ever since its independence, been consistently preaching to all states but which India itself has persistently violated and continues to violate in its own international dealings.
To return to my main point, I submit that the degree of independence of a country within the four corners of international law is determined more by the country’s own strength and will to independence than by its external affiliations, such as the membership of Pacts. Indeed, the ability of a country to enter into a treaty or a Pact is itself a demonstration of its independence. No dependent country is competent to conclude a treaty.
If Pakistanis feel that they are not independent enough, they themselves are to blame for it and not the fact of their membership of the Pacts. We should do everything in our power to develop our internal resources and decrease our economic dependence on outside sources of assistance. Our economic dependence on foreign Powers is in no way related to our membership of the Pacts.
I have scrutinized every word of the relevant treaties in an attempt to discover if there is any provision stipulating that Pakistan’s internal budget is to be supported by counterpart funds or by PL-480 funds. If we are able to mobilise our own resources, it would be a relief to us as well as to those who assist us.
Pakistan is not the first or the only recipient of foreign aid. The United States of America literally pulled Europe out of economic degradation through massive aid under the Marshall Plan. Germany, defeated and divided, destroyed and decimated by the combined might of the Allied Powers, was a debris but only a decade ago. By skilful utilization of foreign aid and the determination to be free of it, Germany has burgeoned into a mighty power. Today its economy is as vital as that of the country which not very long ago gave it economic aid.
In the same manner, among other Western European nations, France, Italy and the United Kingdom have been enabled to regain their economic independence through Marshall Aid.
If the purpose of the aid were to make countries permanently dependent on foreign assistance, these great European States would not have been able to revive their economies with the infusion of aid. It is, therefore, the betrayal of a senile complex to assert that economic aid carries with it the virus of permanent dependence.
Time magazine in its issue of 23rd November 1962, has made certain interesting comments on foreign aid. It reports:
“Within the Kennedy Administration, a process of rethinking the ends and means of foreign aid is under way. The inevitable New Frontier ‘task force’ has been appointed, and among its basic texts is a tough minded article by the University of Chicago’s Professor Hans Morgenthau in the June issue of the American Political Science Review.
“Morgenthau takes a scholarly scalp to the concept of economic development aid. It has, he says, ‘a very much smaller range of potentially successful operation than is generally believed’. Many under-developed countries ‘suffer from deficiencies, some natural and insuperable, others social and remediable, which no amount of capital and technological know-how, supplied from the outside, can cure’. There are ‘bum and beggar nations’ that, unless a ‘miraculous transformation’ of character takes place, cannot or will not use foreign aid for genuine economic development.”
It is against our national pride to be called a “bum and beggar nation”. But, let us at this time of the agonizing reappraisal of our policies indict ourselves for the weaknesses for which we alone are responsible.
I have always advocated the normalization of relations with the Soviet Union and Communist China. I do not believe that our membership of the Pacts is incompatible with such an approach. It was in pursuance of this objective that I sponsored the conclusion of the Oil Agreement between Pakistan and the Soviet Union. There is a great deal of territory on which we can meet the Communist world as friends in the common cause of preserving world peace.
We, as a nation of nearly one hundred million people, the fifth largest in the world, can play a role in the normalization of international relations and in the reduction of international tensions. The Soviet Union is our close neighbor. In the long and stormy march of history, our paths have often crossed. There has been an intermingling of races and cultures in our two regions. The great heritage which scions of the House of Timur brought to us from what today is Soviet Central Asia, inspires us and will continue to inspire us. During my visit to Samarkand, Tashkent and other places in those parts, I was amazed to witness the great affinity of cultures and outlook between their people and ours. I was amazed because, in spite of the high mountains that separate us and the lack of contacts during the past centuries, there was abundant evidence of the indissoluble links between our two regions. We extend the hand of friendship to the Soviet Union on terms of equality and self-respect. However, the Soviet Union, for its own reasons, has been unsympathetic to us in respect of a problem which is fundamental to our future. Until it can better appreciate the objective merits of that problem, I am afraid that, despite all our wishes, we cannot completely normalize our relations with that great country.
The case of the People’s Republic of China is entirely different. We admire the People’s Republic of China for not having adopted a hostile stand on Kashmir, in spite of the fact that in the past our relations with that great Asian neighbour of ours were not as cordial as they are today. In a book called Panchsheela and after, written by Girilal Jain, the author has said:
“During Mr. Chou En-lai’s visit to India in 1956-57, the Chinese Prime Minister was repeatedly asked to define his Government’s policy on the issue of the Indo-Pakistan dispute over Kashmir. Mr. Chou En-lai was, unlike the Soviet leaders, noncommittal. This lends some indirect confirmation to unconfirmed reports then prevalent in New Delhi that the Chinese rulers were not wholly averse to the idea of having a deal with Pakistan on the Kashmir issue.”
Let us be big enough to admit our faults, for which the present Government is not responsible. When the Central Government of the People’s Republic of China was established, we recognised their new regime and initially supported its admission to the United Nations. Thereafter, advantage was taken of our domestic confusion and weakness and, presumably under pressure, we reversed our position. For a number of years, we did not support the People’s Republic of China’s admission to the United Nations. Now, it is not unnatural for friendly countries to persuade one another to accept a particular point of view. This is a part of international relations. For instance, even in domestic affairs, as Minister of Industries, I might try to persuade the Commerce Minister to accept my point of view, but if he rejects it that does not mean that he has not succumbed to my “pressure”.
What is tragic is the willingness to succumb easily to pressures. This inevitably happens when there is internal weakness. The very fact that the same allies could not prevail upon the present Government to continue the previous policy against the admission of Communist China to the United Nations is evidence of the independence of our present foreign policy, even within the context of our alliances. On merits, we have been able to revert to our original stand because the present Government is strong and stable enough to do so. We have in the past two years supported the admission of Communist China to the United Nations. It would be beneficial to all mankind if the People’s Republic of China were to become a member of the World Organisation. How is it possible for the United Nations to bring to bear the full weight of authority on any issue when the representatives of 650 million people are excluded from its deliberations and discipline?
Without further ado, let me declare that we have no ill-will against China, that we have no territorial disputes with that country, that our relations with it are normal and cordial, and that we appreciate the attitude of China on the Kashmir question and that attitude, we hope, will become more positive with further improvement in our mutual relations.
For its part China has assured us that our membership of the Pacts with the West is in no way incompatible with our friendship with China. This friendship is unshakable and unconditional.
It has been reported that the Central People’s Government of China has offered a non-aggression Pact to Pakistan. This offer cannot be regarded as inconsistent with our alliances with the West. Our alliances are for self-defence. A non-aggression Pact further reinforces the defensive character of those alliances.
I declare that our friendship with China is not tainted by any form of bargain or barter. It is steadfast amity between two neighbouring Asian States comprising over 750 million people.
We can maintain a posture of friendship with the People’s Republic of China and of normalization of relations with the Soviet Union. We can do that without violating the sanctity of our Pacts with our Western allies, who were the first to enable us to break out of our isolation.
As far as the neutral states are concerned, we have tried to maintain normal relations with all of them. If our relations with the UAR were not happy a number of years ago, the fault is not that of this Government. Ever since the revolutionary regime came into power, it has sought sedulously to improve relations with the United Arab Republic and with all other Middle Eastern and African countries, including Nigeria, Ghana and the Arab States of the Maghreb. It has also sought to improve relations with other important neutralist states, notably Yugoslavia.
Having broadly dealt with the three political divisions of the world, I should now like to briefly address myself to all those who call upon us to abandon the Pacts and become “scrupulously neutral”. Under the present circumstances it cannot be denied that India is the lynch-pin of the neutralist combination. Therefore, if we were to pitch our tent in the neutralist camp, we would become subject to Indian hegemony and to its Machiavellian maneuvers. Until the Kashmir dispute is settled, we cannot think of becoming a part of a sphere of influence dominated by India.
I do not think there is anyone in Pakistan who would like this country to become a satellite of a heterogeneous concert of relatively weak and vacillating nations, of which India is the leader. Moreover, to what extent and how effectively the neutralist countries came to India’s rescue in its present conflict with China is all too well-known.
The Commonwealth of Nations cannot be regarded as a separate ideological sphere of influence. Its older members are in the Western camp and most of the new ones are in the neutralist camp. However, our relations with almost all the Commonwealth countries are very cordial.
Britain has been much maligned. It has been said that Britain was against the partition and that the last Viceroy of the Indian Empire and the first Governor-General of independent India, Lord Mountbatten, was hostile to Pakistan. Be that as it may. All that is part of history, we have to reckon with its legacy. One of the weaknesses, or shall I say virtues, of the Anglo-Saxon is that he is, basically, a realist. As such, the Anglo-Saxon has no permanent attitudes. Moreover, it is given to that race to grudgingly admire those that come into conflict with it. The classic example is that of Germany. There is no doubt that the British admired and at one time feared the indomitable spirit and courage of the Muslims. In their bid for a world empire they found in Islam their most formidable foe.
The great British historian Arnold Toynbee, in his book Civilization on Trial, observes:
“Centuries before Communism was heard of, our ancestors found their bugbear in Islam. As lately as the sixteenth century Islam inspired the same hysteria in Western hearts as Communism in the twentieth century and this essentially for the same reason. Like Communism, Islam was an anti-Western movement which was at the same time a heretical version of a Western faith; and, like Communism, it wielded a sword of the spirit against which there was no defence in material armaments.”
But, when the dictates of reality demanded, the British suppressed their traditional hostility to Islam and supported the Turkish Empire against Czarist Russia’s expansionist urges. Historical memories are most profound among those with whom swords have been crossed. The bravery of the Muslims remains a living legend in Britain.
Today, however, the British are more to be sympathized with than to be envied. Their great Empire, on which the sun never set, is now shrunk to a small and vulnerable island, open to complete destruction by thermo-nuclear weapons. Napoleon Bonaparte called the British a nation of shop-keepers. Today its shops have become part of a European Market and Britannia cannot tilt the scales of power one way or the other. We have no rancor against Britain, but if it influences the United States to upset the balance of power in this region, it will be committing a hostile act against Pakistan. We shall be forced to take notice of that act and shall not be responsible for its consequences.
I should now like to refer to some of our neighbours. Although Afghanistan is a Muslim State, it has, unfortunately, from the very beginning, pursued an incomprehensible inimical policy towards Pakistan. We, on the other hand, have exercised restraint in the face of continuous provocation. On numerous occasions, Pakistan has sought to improve its relations with Afghanistan. But that country, obviously in order to distract its people’s attention from internal stresses, has endeavored to channel all their bitterness in the direction of Pakistan by making fictitious claims to our territory.
Every inch of Pakistani territory is sacred and inviolable. Unless and until, therefore, Afghanistan abandons the pursuit of its puerile expansionist aims, none can expect an improvement in the relations between Afghanistan and Pakistan and none can hold Pakistan responsible for the present state of those relations.
Nepal, very near to East Pakistan, is our proximate neighbor. Notwithstanding this proximity, in the past our contacts with Nepal were restricted. Since the Revolution, our relations with that country have steadily improved. About a year ago, King Mahendra was our honored guest in Pakistan. We have exchanged several important delegations with Nepal. I might add that constructive efforts are being made by the Government of Pakistan for further developing relations with Nepal.
I now come to India and to the core of our problems. A little over 15 years ago we were citizens of the same country striving for its liberation from the yoke of British colonialism. Because of fundamental differences we parted company and became two separate nation States. Many of us had hoped that the bitterness of the past would be dissolved as each State pursued its own policies according to its own interpretation of the values of life. Much to our regret this has not happened.
Immediately before and after the transfer of power a vast number of people lost their lives. The aftermath of that event was one of horror. The greatest of all migrations known to history took place. There was danger of war between the two countries.
Pakistan, as the smaller country, faced with many more problems and possessing far less resources than India, was the more anxious of the two to come to a settlement of the disputes between them and to live as a good neighbor and, indeed, to establish a permanent modus vivendi with India. This policy of peace did not fit into the grand design of India, which was to bring about the disintegration of Pakistan, amongst other things, by creating turmoil and disorder. Instead of passing over the tragic events of 1947 the Indian Government chose to exacerbate the tensions created by the partition. Every step of Indian policy has been taken with the aim of strangulating Pakistan. In this respect the policy of the Indian Government has remained rigid and uncompromising. There is a concatenation of instances as proof of this but I would not like to mention every one of them, for that enumeration would in no way help to improve the situation. It would only pile pain upon the existing agony.
In the very first instance, India refused to honour the financial settlement that was explicitly agreed to as a part of the process of the transfer of power. So unreasonable and damaging to India’s reputation was this attitude that even Gandhi objected to it and threatened to go on a hunger strike as a protest against it. Pakistan had, in the meanwhile, taken the matter to the Security Council. India, unable to defend itself before that body, partly fulfilled the agreement. It is not that Gandhi was charitable to Pakistan, but he seemed so. For that reason he was killed by the bullet of a Hindu fanatic who represented that powerful element in India’s life which openly seeks the liquidation of Pakistan.
Finance is the blood-stream of a nation, particularly that of a new nation, born in chaos and striving desperately for survival. The Indian Government believed that by not honouring the financial settlement, which formed part of the partition arrangement and by not transferring to Pakistan its pre-determined share of the financial assets of undivided India, the economic arteries of Pakistan would be drained of life. To make that more certain, the division and transfer of defence assets and personnel was hampered at every step, with the obvious purpose of denying the new State the means to defend itself. Pakistan never received anything of its share of weapons and vehicles.
The gigantic evacuee property problem, which was the by-product of the migration, also placed Pakistan in a very difficult position. India chose to complicate and delay the solution of the problem. By keeping it unsolved and enlarging its scope, our neighbor forced upon us the stupendous task of rehabilitating the refugees and solving the question of their properties. As if these were not problems enough, the explosive issues of Junagadh and Kashmir and Hyderabad were precipitated. An already tense situation was converted into a conflagration. India marched its armies into Junagadh, Kashmir and Hyderabad in a manner reminiscent of the trampling Nazi jack boots of Hitler’s Germany seeking lebensraum.
The western part of Pakistan, as every one knows, is wholly dependent on its rivers which irrigate every acre of its cultivable lands. Without these waters West Pakistan, a most fertile region, would be a veritable desert. India has acquired by its illegal military occupation of Kashmir, the power to stop those waters. Another lethal weapon was thus added to India’s armory for aggression against Pakistan.
These major problems do not include the multitude of irritants, such as incidents of various kinds on the borders of East and West Pakistan and attempts to tamper with East Pakistan rivers. To climax all this animosity, India has repeatedly declared that Pakistan is its Enemy No. 1 and deploys more than two-thirds of its armed forces against Pakistan.
We have been the victim of the combined strength of India’s political, economic and military might. Furthermore, by its resourceful propaganda and skilful diplomacy in the chancelleries of the world, India has, behind the facade of its deceptive policy of non-violence and the myth of its peaceful heritage, sought to put Pakistan in the wrong in the eyes of the world. Thus a State, which actually is the victim of India’s aggressive actions, has been depicted by India as pursuing against it a policy of unwarranted ill-will. This atrocious attempt is without parallel in the history of international relations.
The heart of the Indo-Pakistan problems lies in the Kashmir dispute and in India’s arrogant refusal to settle that dispute. India has violated every single agreement entered into by it with regard to Kashmir. On all occasions, Pakistan has agreed to compromise proposals for a settlement. India has rejected every one of them. At one time, during the premiership of Mr. Liaquat Ali Khan, at the Commonwealth Conference in London, it was suggested that Commonwealth troops be posted in Kashmir to ensure a free expression of the will of the people. India rejected that proposal on the ground that the presence of foreign troops on the soil of Kashmir would give the impression that imperialism had returned to the sub-continent. Is it not ironical, that today, India is literally pleading for the presence on her soil of foreign troops and foreign armaments to help in its border clash with China?
It is believed that Military Missions from the United States and Great Britain have visited the NEFA front and have now become the brains trust of the General Headquarters of the Indian Army. Their presence and their advice have been welcomed in India and are said to have given a sense of security to that country. According to India this is not to be regarded as the return of imperialism, but for refusing the stationing of Commonwealth troops in the disputed territory of Kashmir, that was the pretext.
The conflict in regard to Kashmir, painful to all who cherish the cause of peace, is the greatest tragedy of our times. India has dishonored all its pledges to settle the dispute by means of a plebiscite. But that is not all. As recently stated in this House by its leader, Mr. Mohammed Ali of Bogra, India has taken its stand on the doctrine of “Clausa Rebus Sic Stantibus”. This doctrine and the other, “Pactasunt Servanda”, are important in international law. The latter doctrine calls for a rigid adherence to treaties. Under it all peace-loving states are enjoined to carry out their undertakings. The former doctrine gives an opening to adventurous states unilaterally to wriggle out of commitments, voluntarily undertaken by them. By its refusal to honour its pledged word on Kashmir, India has done precisely this and has sought justification for it by evoking this doctrine of dubious moral value. However, it is not given to individual countries themselves to determine whether circumstances have changed or changed so much as to justify the repudiation of a treaty or of a part of it. Obviously, a third party has to determine whether circumstances have really altered, and if so, to what extent. India’s former Defence Minister, Mr. Krishna Menon, said in the Security Council that circumstances had changed because of Pakistan’s accepting American assistance, and that these changed circumstances rendered the agreement about a plebiscite inoperative. India wants to be the judge in its own case,
I should like to make a reference to the recent fighting between India and China. We know that it is only a border clash, and our view has been substantiated by subsequent events and confirmed by the unilateral cease-fire and the withdrawal of forces on the part of the Chinese. Hostilities have come to an end and China, of its own accord, has at the height of its successes stopped the fighting. Indeed, it could not have demonstrated its peaceful intentions in a more positive fashion than by ordering a unilateral cease-fire, a demonstration for which it would be difficult to find a precedent.
The People’s Republic of China has thus shown its eagerness to settle the dispute peacefully rather than by the use of force. The Charter of the United Nations enjoins that all disputes should be settled by peaceful means. Thus China, which is not a member of the United Nations, has respected its Charter. India, which is a prominent member of that organization, has ignored it.
India’s attitude in this dispute has been unpredictable. But, whatever it be, she has sought to extract the maximum advantage from the present situation. A climate of war hysteria has been created by the Indian Government, mainly for two purposes: (a) to unite a country that was rapidly falling apart, for, in the face of external danger, people do tend to come together, and (b) to grab foreign military assistance in a massive way. These are both vital purposes. In order to realize them, war-drums are being beaten throughout the length and breadth of India.
As I said in the beginning, this is a phantom war for a bankrupt cause. This is a phony war, so much so that Prime Minister Nehru himself in a broadcast to his nation on 21st October said:
“We are in the middle of our Third Five-Year Plan. There can be no question of giving up this Plan or reducing any important element of it. We may adapt it to the new requirements here and there. But, essentially the major projects of the Plan must be pursued and implemented; because it is in that way that we shall strengthen our country, not only in the present crisis but in the years to come.”
When India’s Third Five-Year Plan was framed, its whole emphasis was on peace-time economic development and on the assumption that India would be free from the dangers of war or conflict. It was based on the assumption that India would not face a military conflict. That being the premise of the Plan, it is difficult to understand how under war conditions, it has not become necessary to make radical departures from the principles and objectives of the Plan. To “adapt it here and there” is not what a war situation would demand. It is because the so-called war with China is no more than a border conflict, restricted in its scope and its objective that the Plan may have to be adapted only “here and there” without making any major changes in it.
On 1st November 1962, the Indian Government, after very careful consideration, finally decided against resorting to any drastic action to regulate the prices of food grains and other essential commodities. The Indian Government, “at its highest level” considered it advisable to “pursue broadly existing policies”. The Food Ministry was of the view that “there was no need for any concern now about the availability or prices of food grains”. This important decision was announced by the Government of India on 2nd November and the same day it was carried by all the newspapers.
This is another indication of the fact that the Government of India does not consider itself at war with another State. If India was genuinely involved in a war, or had to make preparations for it, drastic measures to control prices, and particularly those of necessary commodities, such as food and clothing, would have become inevitable in a semi-controlled economy like that of India’s.
The decision, on the part of India, to maintain normal policies, and, the unilateral cease-fire ordered by the Government of China, clearly indicate that the dispute between India and China is confined to the “border question.
Mr. Krishna Menon has been made a scapegoat. He was at least frank enough to give expression to the feeling existing in India against Pakistan, and for that he should be given credit. He represented and reflected the Indians’ prevailing genuine feeling of animosity against Pakistan and the intensity of that sentiment. There was no Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde in Mr. Krishna Menon. However, even after his unceremonious dismissal, many think he continues to influence Indian policies from behind the scene. Mr. Krishna Menon, I fear, will continue to dominate the Government of India’s attitude towards Pakistan.
The new Defence Minister is a Maharashtrian. He has been chosen for this post to inject a martial spirit into the Indian Government. He is the modem Shivaji. The other day he boasted that.
“Never in my life have I known defeat. I will not have it now. Let not China forget that side by side with Lord Buddha and Mahaveer, India also produced Rana Pratap and Shivaji.”
The new Defence Minister warned the Chinese to remember that— “The enemy hordes which had won battles in the plains of India had met their Waterloo in the mountainous region of the Deccan.”
These are chauvinistic remarks, perhaps intended to be reassuring to the country that was badly mauled and humiliated in the recent border conflict. We are not concerned with the internal changes in the Indian Government, except to the extent that we cannot be expected to embrace the new Shivaji and meet the fate of Afzal Khan. In many ways a Krishna Menon with a loaded pistol pointed at us is to be preferred to the craftily hidden claws of a Shivaji. We have been embraced before by a Shivaji and we know with what result.
All recent developments in India, including cabinet changes, are part of a well-conceived plan, whose aim is to inveigle America and to play on American fears of international Communism. That Nehru has succeeded in creating this situation redounds to his credit, but it is not very flattering to Anglo-American diplomacy.
It is obvious that Nehru has refused a peaceful settlement of the dispute with China in order to derive from it the maximum advantage in the form of the massive arms aid rushed to India by the Western Powers. To get these arms, Nehru has had to break his own image and to violate his much-trumpeted doctrine of Panchsheela. Gone is the proud voice of neutralism. That image has been broken and that doctrine shattered. India, the friend of all except Pakistan, finds herself alone and isolated. Self-assurance and self-confidence have given way to alarm and despondency, for it is now clear that the Indian giant was only the shadow of a small man.
It must be regretfully recognised that the Western Powers want to entice India into their bloc and to aggravate its conflict with China. They want to take obvious advantage of India’s desperation and want India to depend upon them. It is not unusual in diplomacy to take advantage of opportunities as they present themselves, but even then certain formalities are as a rule observed. In the present case, the Western Powers went through no formalities whatever before seducing India into their sphere of influence. India is refusing a peaceful settlement of the problem although, during all these past years, Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru has been preaching to all countries sermons on the peaceful settlement of disputes.
The People’s Republic of China has made a peaceful offer and has, in the interest of an amicable settlement, unilaterally put an end to the fighting. India has, however, refused to accept the offer. This refusal constitutes a flagrant repudiation of India’s peaceful posture in international affairs and of the spirit of Nehru’s sermons on the virtues of the peaceful settlement of disputes.
Pakistan has a legitimate cause to feel concerned over India’s growing military strength and the massive military aid given to India by Pakistan’s Western allies. Our own apprehensions apart, in the interest of world peace and especially the peace of this region, we ask the Indian Government to settle its dispute with China through peaceful negotiations on an honorable and equitable basis.
There is nothing so difficult about the present dispute between India and China that it cannot be settled by peaceful means. China contends that it has to rectify its boundary, which is a legacy of British colonial rule. This was admitted by Prime Minister Nehru many years ago in his Glimpses of World History. In that book, Nehru said that Imperialism usurped large areas of China. The rectification of the MacMahon Line is a part of the struggle of China to set right the wrongs done to it by colonial powers.
In Glimpses of World History, Mr. Nehru has said:
“Having seen how India was exploited in the nineteenth century by the industrialists and capitalists of Britain, let us go to the other great country of Asia, India’s old-time friend, that ancient among nations, China. We shall find here a different type of exploitation by the West.” (p. 457).
“The great Chinese Empire of the Manchus, which, by the end of the eighteenth century, covered and dominated nearly half Asia, was now humbled and disgraced. Western Powers from distant Europe had defeated and humiliated it.” (p. 465).
“It was extraordinary—this shameless scramble. Of course, China did not enjoy parting with territory or granting concessions. She was forced to agree, on every occasion, by displays of naval force and threats of bombardment. What shall we call this scandalous behavior? Highway robbery? Brigandage? It is the way of imperialism. Sometimes it works in secret; sometimes it covers its evil deeds under a cloak of pious sentiment and hypocritical pretence of doing good to others. But in China in 1898 there was no cloak or covering. The naked thing stood out in all its ugliness.” (p. 474).
After the departure of the imperialist British, India inherited the border fashioned by them. It is natural that the Chinese should wish to have it rectified. The only proper way to settle the border dispute, in the present world situation, is for India to accept the offer of the People’s Republic of China and without any further loss of time to go to the negotiating table.
Since the actual fighting has ceased, India has had time to ponder over the failures of her policy of non-alignment. But Pandit Nehru has behaved about it in his characteristic way. When the situation for India was critical, he almost abandoned neutrality. But when he found an immediate and overwhelming response to his demand for arms from the West, he held back and tried to retrieve part of the lost ground.
The President of Ghana, the Head of an important neutral State, opposed military assistance to India on the ground that it would only serve to aggravate the situation. Objectively speaking, this was a correct stand. India, however, was in no frame of mind to accept an objective assessment. President Nkrumah, in a letter to the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, had stated that he was “distressed and saddened to hear the report that the British Government will give India every support in her fight against China”. This reaction of a neutralist power caused consternation in India.
President Nkrumah’s interpretation of the situation was an honest reflection of his neutralism. India’s reaction would also have been the same if the dispute had been between two other states. In the existing case, however, India itself was on trial, not only as a neutralist country, but also as a State. For once, India directly had the experience of being sermonized by those not involved in the dispute.
Despite a major reverse in international diplomacy, Pandit Nehru regained sufficient composure to retrieve largely the ground he had lost in maintaining his superficial posture of neutrality. His principal aim in this effort was to maintain his country’s friendly relations with the Soviet Union. It did not require any great feat of diplomacy to do so, because the Western donors of military assistance did not demand any drastic change of policy on his part as the price for such assistance. If he had abandoned neutrality, as was earlier indicated, he would have lost the support of the Soviet Union. The Soviet factor was the main motivation behind Pandit Nehru’s attempt to maintain the facade of neutrality. At the same time, the Indian Government also tried desperately to foment misunderstanding between the Soviet Union and the People’s Republic of China. On 8th November 1962, Pandit Nehru said:
“Russia will continue to be friendly with us and not to do - anything injurious to us. I think that they do have friendly feelings for us.”
As a corollary to this on 10th November, Nehru reasserted the policy of non-alignment and said that India would not give it up either out of fear or to oblige vested interests that were opposed to it.
Still, there is questioning among the Indian people about their Government’s policy of non-alignment. This mood has been aggravated by the unwillingness of other neutral states to come forward effectively to support India. However, the Indian Prime Minister persists in maintaining the cover of neutrality for three reasons:
(1) It has been demonstrated that the Western Powers are prepared to offer significant aid to India without preconditions;
(2) It has been possible to maintain friendly relations with the Soviet Union which is a vital factor in India’s bargaining with the Western Powers; and
(3) Nehru is reluctant to abandon at this stage of his career the policy to which he owes his international image.
Thus India finds itself isolated. It is appalled by that isolation and no less a person than the President of the Republic of India, Dr. Radhakrishnan, is reported to have said: “India, until recently, was living in a world of make-belief.” Still Mr. Nehru has not forsaken his claim to neutralism. At the most, his brand of neutralism may now be said to incline towards the right rather than to the left.
One wonders if Mr. Nehru’s foreign policy is undergoing a catharsis or a nemesis. If it is a catharsis, he may well achieve the greatest diplomatic triumph of his famous career. On the other hand, if it is a nemesis, Mr. Nehru will go down in history as a fallen idol. What it will eventually be does not lie entirely in India’s control. It will depend very much on the attitude of the Western Powers.
The rush of arms to India contradicts the much publicized thesis of the Harvard intellectuals that in the present state of international affairs and development of military science, the supply to any country of military hardware is an obsolete form of assistance. According to this school of thought, all the emphasis should be placed on economic assistance. Much was made of this thesis during the last Presidential election campaign and after the Kennedy administration came into office. Following this thesis, a qualitative shift was brought about by the liberal wing of the Democratic Party in the thinking of a section of the American intelligentsia. But hard facts of life and not theories alone have to be taken into account in formulating policies. The Kennedy administration has had to reassess the validity of the Harvard thesis in an actual crisis. The importance of military assistance has once again been recognised, and, even at the cost of betraying an ally like Pakistan, arms aid has been given to India.
As a consequence, India finds itself friendless and so does Pakistan. India, because she has remained neutral, and Pakistan, because she has been wedded to defence alliances. Never before has the wheel of history turned full circle with such vengeance.
Is it not a cruel irony that the two nations of the sub-continent, that have all these years followed diametrically opposite policies, are today so placed that alliance with the West is being advocated in India and neutralism has become the cry in Pakistan? This trend of thinking is the product of an extraordinary and abnormal denouement of events. But so far as we are concerned we cannot base our national policies on considerations arising from sudden developments. They must have a firm and rational foundation. On dispassionate reflection we should realize the danger inherent in an impetuous and precipitate break with the fundamentals of the policy that we have so far followed.
Is the problem so simple that by merely swapping friends we, that is, both India and Pakistan, will find ideal solutions to our respective problems? Can the Kashmir question be solved to our mutual satisfaction by trading horses? Is there not something radically wrong with the situation in which, after fifteen years of independence, both countries are experiencing a sense of disillusionment and frustration over basic aspects of policy, so much so that today we should each like to be in the other’s shoes? This curious situation is essentially due to the tension that exists between the two countries.
However, just as we ought to be more cautious in making new friends, our friends ought perhaps to be equally cautious in making new acquaintances. A bird in hand is worth two in the bush. Confidence is built over a period of time, and understanding comes with the maturing of relationships and not from considerations of passing expediency.
We have accused our friends of betraying us, the great let-down of contemporary international affairs. Friendship in inter-State relations is not a personal factor; it is entirely impersonal. The Soviet Union has often been admired for remaining steadfast to its friends. This reputation it has long possessed. I am, however, surprised that no one in the House has observed or made any mention of the present Cuban crisis and of how that valiant young revolutionary, Fidel Castro, was misled and let down by a great ally like the Soviet Union.
Cuba has been let down badly. The U.S.S.R. placed missiles in that little country, far from Soviet soil and gave Fidel Castro a false sense of security. When the chips were down, Mr. Khrushchev took away the missiles and sent Mr. Mikoyan instead!
We are passing through a very difficult period of our history. In the present critical situation, the difference between a right and false move might well mean the difference between survival and disaster for our nation.
This situation has been ably and courageously handled by our Foreign Minister, Mr. Mohammed Ali, not only here but also in the United Nations. I wish to pay him a tribute for the manner in which he has performed his difficult task. It has indeed been extremely difficult and I, for one, would not wish to change places with him for all the camels in Sindh.
The united will of a people is the most powerful weapon in its armory. That will is tested in crises and it is in a crisis that a nation rises or falls. I have no doubt that we shall be able to stand the test whenever it comes. This nation of a hundred million will respond to the call of duty with all its vigor and vitality. In the name of the people of Pakistan and in the name of the people of Sind, whom I represent in the Government of Pakistan, let me make it clear to the whole world that in the defence of our country we shall, when the occasion demands, be prepared to make every sacrifice, and even lay down our lives. Rejecting the obnoxious colonial categories of martial and non-martial races, I say that if we have to fight for the preservation of the independence of Pakistan, every Pakistani, man and woman will be a soldier. The whole nation will be in arms. If we fight with an indomitable spirit and tenacity, victory will be ours.
If we persevere with the same firmness and strength of purpose we shall also be able to liberate Kashmir. The nation, I have no doubt, will rally round its flag and its leader. It will protect our ramparts. If need be, it will move mountains.
The Government of Pakistan appeals to the Government of India to accept the generous offer of the Central Government of the People’s Republic of China to negotiate a peaceful settlement of the border conflict. It is incumbent on the parties concerned and on the United Nations, as the arbiter of world peace, to make earnest efforts to settle the Sino-Indian dispute, or else, a blind fate may drive those nations towards self-destruction.
It is for the great men who control the destinies of their peoples, to settle this dispute and all other important disputes according to the principles of justice and equity, so that the people of the world can be enabled to make the fullest use of this age of glorious opportunities.