The Monkey Trap

Discussion in 'Pakistan' started by DivineHeretic, Feb 28, 2013.

  1. DivineHeretic

    DivineHeretic Senior Member Senior Member

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    This is a decade old article, putting forward a hypothesis on the state of our neighbour to the west, and a prediction of their future. Ten years down the line, every word in the article stands vindicated, something not even the legendary Nostradomous can claim of. The guy feserves to be in the planning commision. If there was ever a must read, this would be it.

    I tried searching for the article here, but failed to find it. If the article has already been posted, I request the mods to delete this thread.


    India's Response: The Monkey Trap-The way you catch a monkey is quite simple. What you do is put a large, heavy jar with a mango or banana in it out in the open. The jar has a very small neck. Soon enough, a monkey will come along and stick his hand inside to grab the fruit. When he tries to draw his hand out he can't. The hand with the fruit is too large for the neck of the jar. The monkey could easily let go of the bait and escape, but they never do. Even when he sees the catcher with his net, he'll jump up and down and squeal ferociously, but he won't let go of the fruit. He simply can't. It's quite beyond his power. No one knows why, but that's the way it is, and that's how they catch the monkey.-

    (Source: Indian children's fable.)

    -The Pakistani elite have long justified their terrorism in India as a low cost solution to "bleeding India dry". Somewhere amidst the grand visions of these strategic thinkers, the Pakistanis missed the rather prosaic fact that during the decade long terror war, India not only didn't "bleed white" but in fact did far better than it had ever done.

    -Pakistani spent the last decade of the Twentieth Century screeching the battle cry of Jehad, creating the Taliban, supporting Osama bin Laden and waging a war of terror on the people of India, Iran, Afghanistan, Russia, the Central Asian states and even China. Meanwhile the elites attempted to loot everything in sight. India, on the other hand, quietly went about producing the fastest economic growth since Independence and, among other things, become a world power in software. Pakistan's strategic gambit in Kashmir failed spectacularly and brought Pakistan to the verge of state failure and being declared a terrorist state, it came astonishingly close to collective suicide during it's years of delusion.-

    We put forward the hypothesis that India, faced with the threat of a bankrupt, unstable and permanently recalcitrant neighbor which could soon join the list of failed states, and acting in the interests of it's own security, engaged the "monkey trap" as India's solution to the half century long Kashmir dispute and Pakistan problem. We do not however, provide any supporting evidence. The "trap" is a hypothesis, no more.

    -The essence of the monkey trap is its simplicity, which in turn is based on the limited strategic options available to Pakistan and the national character of its elite. Pakistan is caught in a self-destructive cycle with no way out, trapped between rhetoric and reality. It cannot abandon the anti-Indian crusade and Kashmir because too much has been invested into it and without the Indian enemy they have no identity and no method to maintain their rentier control of the Pakistani state. This fundamental basis of Pakistan can be understood within the context of the earlier section.

    The monkey trap, in our opinion, was the only method available to India to engage and permanently destroy an unhinged enemy, and played almost perfectly to India's strengths and to Pakistani weaknesses. All that it is necessary for India to do is to stand firm, make no significant concessions, and quietly watch Pakistan's long slide into irrelevance, as it seeks ever more desperate ways to obtain that ever elusive "victory" over India.

    -It does not require the political or economic penalty that a major war would have, but its effect on Pakistan has been just as destructive. It allowed Pakistan's elites to flay away pointlessly at a controlled target, Kashmir, while the Indian economy continued to outgrow it's previous growth bounds. The strength of the trap lies in the fact that, given the character of the Pakistani state and its ruling elites, it requires India to do the absolute minimum for it's success. In fact, India has to do nothing more other than protect it's citizens and territory for the trap to work. It is a passive strategy and consequently fits in well with India's democracy. Furthermore, it is virtually impossible to tell a politician, do nothing, and you will triumph, and NOT expect them to overwhelmingly accept that as a "brilliant" Fabian like strategy.

    -India did, and the trap, in our opinion, worked.-

    It should be noted that, it is irrelevant whether the trap was deliberately set to bait Pakistan, or whether it evolved as India realized that Pakistan may have over-reached itself. It is also irrelevant if, as far as India is concerned, there is no "trap" at all. The end result is the same. Pakistan is irrevocably locked into an impossible endeavor and caught in a cycle it cannot withdraw from while it's society and nation rapidly slips into an abyss and India grows from strength to strength.

    Pakistan could, of course, in principle let go the fruit and remove it's hand from the jar. However, just as the mythical monkey does not have the slightest idea why it's trapped, the structure of Pakistan's elite society precludes any such behavior. More over any such move would endanger their control of Pakistan, relinquishing the fruit cannot happen unless the Pakistani elite are collectively willing to let go of their control. Additionally, if this was possible, the elite would have done so long ago, but Pakistan's ideology comes into play, and to "let go” negates the very existence of Pakistan itself.-

    After 9-11: Enter the Gorilla-A strategy such as the Monkey Trap would obviously require an end game. 9-11 however, made all such calculations redundant. In this section, we shall argue that the essence of the trap has not in fact changed, but may have even greater benefits than before 9-11.

    -In order to understand the role of the trap in the post 9-11 world, it's necessary to understand that the US is well aware of Pakistan's links with Osama bin Laden's Al-Qaeda network, the Taliban and Pakistan's sponsorship of terrorism in Kashmir. The testimony of Vincent Cannistraro, the former CIA Chief of Counter terrorism Operations and Analysis, before the House Committee on International Relations and the work done by Yossef Bodansky, the former Director of the Task Force on Terrorism and Unconventional Warfare of the U.S. Congress, makes this clear [26] , [27] .

    -The Pakistani government's links to these terrorists are now so well known, that even Pakistan's friends in the US have admitted, as the Brooking Institute's Stephen Cohen did recently, that if bin Laden were to be "found" by the Pakistani's, then;-

    ... there will be a corpse of Osama bin Laden. That would solve the Pakistani problem. Somebody would get a reward. You don't want him talking and explaining exactly who he got his support from. Also the-you know, so I think his guards and people around him, especially the Afghans are-you know, he has more to fear from them [the Pakistani's] than, perhaps, from American bombing in the next few days. [28]-

    Since the 9-11 attacks, Pakistan seems to once again have become an American "ally". Our argument is that as far as Pakistan's status as a failed state and it's entanglement in the monkey trap is concerned, 9-11 changed nothing despite the rhetoric. This claim is quite easy to defend. Our fundamental argument is that nothing has changed because the rentier-elite and it's ideological framework, the Nazria-e-Pakistan is the fundamental source of all of Pakistan's problems and this elite is exactly where it was prior to 9-11, firmly in charge.-

    The elite is intelligent, nimble and amoral enough to take advantage of the US's blood loss on September 11 that Pakistan did so much to cause. We do not claim that "Pakistani's are stupid", or incapable of changing. We simply claim that the "system" in Pakistan does not allow them to make any more than cosmetic changes. This will not save Pakistan from becoming a failed state, just as Gorbachev’s “tinkering” with the Soviet system failed to save the Soviet Union. The only change that could make a permanent difference is if Pakistan abandons it's ideology and it's Kashmir claim. Neither can happen.-

    Therefore, we contend that 9-11 made no fundamental changes to the Pakistani elite, except for the vast amount of humiliation they had to bear as the US, after greasing them with the IMF, forced them to bend and receive whatever the US decided to insert into their body politic. Of course, this entry of the US, per se a 1000 pound gorilla, does change the dynamics in the subcontinent.-

    However, as the massive mobilization by the Indian Armed Forces showed, India's coercive ability within it's own backyard is enormous. The force displayed seemed to be designed to send multiple messages. On behalf of the US, the mobilization ensured that the Pakistani Army was forced to move to forward positions, putting the entire PA within the open persuasion range of the USAF's "daisy cutters". This gave Pakistan a certain level of incentive to co-operate with the US, and also ensured that the US's Special Forces do not trip over them along the Afghan borders as they try to "help".

    -On another level, the mobilization also sent a clear message by India to not only the Pakistanis, who are already aware of the "messages" the Indian Armed Forces are capable of sending, but more importantly, to the US and anyone else interested. The message said that if India was forced into war, it would do so on a scale and size that would alter the regional agenda towards Indian geo-political objectives instead of the American ones. This is not a trivial point, and was succinctly stated by Indian's former Prime Minister, V.P Singh, " If there is another war, we will not stop until our strategic aims are obtained."

    -It is here that Pakistani begging for US intervention to "force" India to make concessions preferably regarding Kashmir is nothing short of astonishing. It never seems to occur to Pakistani “strategists” and “intellectuals" that except for all out war, (in which the US would risk billions of dollars, thousands of casualties a depressed world economy and a potential nuclear exchange), there is no possible way for this to happen. Exactly why the US should opt for war against India on Pakistan's behalf is never clear. This lack of understanding of the real world is India's greatest weapon against Pakistan.-

    India is clearly not interested in war, not even against Pakistan. After all, why should India expend blood, sweat and treasure taking down Pakistan?. If the Americans want to do it, its perfectly fine from an Indian perspective. The US has accomplished more in Afghanistan, than India ever could. And there is every reason for India to ensure that the US finishes the job before getting distracted by Iraq. This leads, quite serendipitously to perhaps the most important role of the Monkey Trap; it's generalization.

    -Pakistan currently provides the most tempting fruit available for the neighborhood’s newest and largest primate. Pakistan, a nuclear armed "moderate" Islamic state, controlled or influenced by the US a la Egypt or Turkey, and a potential check on Indian, Iranian, Russian and Chinese influence in Central Asia is a tempting ally. It remains to be seen whether or not the Americans have realized that way madness lies. Perhaps, the Americans will be successful. On the other hand, a failing Pakistan is a clear and present danger to the US as it's nuclear weapons may fall into the hands of non-state actors. The temptation to act pre-emptively would be overwhelming.

    -Then the Monkey Trap would morph into the Gorilla Trap.-Either way, India stands to gain. As it would lock the US into doing precisely what India wants, to clean up the Pakistani mess at their own cost. All in all, India benefits whether America succeeds or fails.


    The article is so old that the given link no longer exists, but other defence forums have this article in their archives.
     
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  3. Tianshan

    Tianshan Regular Member

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    due to pakistan's own mistakes they have already lost to india. in every area.
     
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  4. DivineHeretic

    DivineHeretic Senior Member Senior Member

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    If I were the chinese I'd be even more worried. Unlike the Indian border, which is arguably the most heavily militarised border in the world, the Chinese border with Pak, is not. Further China does not maintain any large formation to tackle the flood of islamist extrimists, if Pak implodes into chaos. If pak burns up, the flames will singe Uighur province, and this is something the CCP realises.
     
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  5. Tianshan

    Tianshan Regular Member

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    ccp already planned for it. if there is a collapse then it will be handled on the border.
     
  6. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    I would not know, but I think China has to tolerate Pakistan for strategic reasons, knowing fully well that it is an unstable country which has no control of the fundamentalists, who are a force by themselves and can unsettle the Western areas of China.

    China would have taken measures to not only act as Pakistan's best friend, but also have access within Pakistan to monitor the activities and thrusts of these free lance fundamentalist elements in Pakistan.
     
  7. DivineHeretic

    DivineHeretic Senior Member Senior Member

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    Fully agree with what you said, Sir. But would like to add a couple of points.

    Unlike the US, the Chinese will never provide aid to Pak, ever deal is a business deal to them. For all the rhetoric of higher than mountains and lower than ocean friendship, the Chinese will secure financial profits first.

    China is just a stone throw away from the most volatile region in the world. If Pak government mechanism crumbles, or implodes, they will find themselves at literally at the centre of the action, with territorial integrity under threat. China will try everything to prevent collapse in Pak, but if it happens, it will not hesitate to follow the US model, more so if its integrity itself is at stake.

    The other headache is if Pak radicalises and nuke falls into the hands of extremists. China and India, being the closest powers, will undoubtably co-ordinate response. What that response would be is anybody's guess. But the 180 million people will be sacrificied by India, and indeed by China, if their nations come under an imminent danger of extermination.
     
  8. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    China's sole preoccupation is self interest.

    By having Gwadar port, they are opening up another trade and oil route through another country, to benefit themselves; notwithstanding the pious platitudes attached.

    It is also giving Chinese Navy a port of call or base to be effective in the Indian Ocean. However, with the US around, it will be tough for them to lord over Indian Ocean.

    If the fundamentalist get an upper hand in Pakistan, then it is a bad bargain for China, The fundoos will throw them out and also organise more efficient forays into Turkmenistan or Sinkiang.
     
  9. Tianshan

    Tianshan Regular Member

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    that is how the world works.

    it will be worse for you by miles. we all know that pakistani militants want india the most, and can easily assimilate into the population without drawing attention.

    if we have a problem here, then you have the same one but on a bigger scale.
     

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