Situationer: We will not forget, we will not forgive: message for Imran

Ansar Abbasi
Thursday, Jun 08, 2023

ISLAMABAD: It’s very rare to see such a strong statement from the Army’s high command as was issued on Wednesday by the ISPR. “We will not forget, we will not forgive” -- the press release does not exactly say so but it’s a clear message for PTI Chairman Imran Khan. After three-day-long Formation Commanders Conference, the press release issued made it clear to all and sundry that the Army will neither forget the May 9 black day nor forgive anyone involved, whether planner, abettor or attacker. The military commanders have also conveyed that they will not tolerate anyone trying to save those involved in the May 9 attacks. To be precise, they said, “Forum also resolved that endeavours by any quarter to create obstructions and stymie the conclusive defeat of ill-design of inimical forces will be dealt with an iron hand.” It’s a message for IK’s facilitators in the judiciary, suggested a senior journalist in a TV talk show on Wednesday night. The Army is determined not to compromise on the trial of all those who had attacked the military installations, buildings, symbols, etc, under the Army Act and Official Secrets Act. Similarly, no propaganda, no campaign of human rights violation “to create a smokescreen” for hiding “the ugly faces” of all involved can save the culprits from punishment. What should now seriously alarm the PTI top leadership, including Imran Khan, is that the time appears to be up for “planners” and “masterminds” of the May 9 attack.

The ISPR press release warned, “It has been further stressed that, while the legal trials of perpetrators and instigators have commenced, it is time that noose of law is also tightened around the planners and masterminds who mounted the hate ripened and politically driven rebellion against the state and state institutions to achieve their nefarious design of creating chaos in the country.” Some senior ministers of the present government have already said that PTI Chairman Imran Khan may be tried under the Army Act because of his alleged planning of May 9 attacks. Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has also said more than once that Imran Khan had instigated his followers to create such a mayhem on May 9.

After his removal from the prime minister’s office, Imran Khan had made the blunder by picking the Army as his enemy, levelling all kinds of allegations against top military men and letting his social media run innumerable campaigns against the institution and its top command. More seriously, Khan misjudged and miscalculated the fallouts of the May 9 attack on the Pakistan Army. He avoided condemning the attack, tried to shift responsibility on others, came up with conspiracy theories and then again started attacking the Army and its chief.

Soon after May 9, everyone started assessing that Imran Khan’s politics is over, at least for the next few years. But his post-May 9 statements and allegations against the military and Army chief seem to have sealed his political future. Imran has already lost dozens of his party leaders. He is bound to lose more after the latest announcement from the ISPR. Khan is now using all his connections abroad to invite the US pressure on Pakistan and Pakistan Army to rescue him from the situation he has landed himself in because of his own doings. To his bad luck, such campaign is also contributing against him because of the nature of sanctions and pressures his party men are seeking against Pakistan and Pakistan Army from Washington.