Episode I.

With Eyes on Persian Gulf oil, Americans let Saddam Hussein to commit blunder of invading Kuwait on August 2, 1990 . It is no secret today that US knew in advance about Saddam design. Some Political commentators go to the extent of to blame America of enticing Saddam for this folly. Reckless Saddam, as his previous record suggested to had been, got green signal from Americans that they would remain neutral if Iraq his claims his right of return and ownership to Kuwait as his renegade province. Saddam did what he was nudged for. Within days, American mood changed from a spectator to defender. Senior Bush announced for the formation of multilateral force for the liberation of occupied Kuwait . If we see in hindsight, we could understand better what happened in the name of “operation desert storm”. Western media embroidered about Iraqi war machinery. Republican Guards, a band of thugs were made as to be best trained and equipped army units on earth. Iraqi fire power was exaggerated. SCUDS, which blew up in midst of flight in desert were labeled as to be awesome, advance technology weapon. “Patriots” were brought in to shoot them. Western Intelligence reports were suggesting of build-up of Super Gun, a weapon, world yet have to see. Lies, lies and lies. A cult of personality was weaved around Saddam, the super hero, who could make run Uncle Sam with single roar. But to disappointment of million of believers, it was very much one sided show. Thousand of Republican Guards sprinted from Kuwait within a few hours of attack. They were chased and targeted like sitting duck in warm sand of desert allied forces stopped short of overrunning Baghdad . Literally the war was over. Kuwaiti Amir got back his throne. American leadership declared that the purpose has been served.

Rogue Saddam was left untouched to lick his wound. America did not show interest to replace Saddam with any sanity, as that would have jeopardized American design to sit in Arabian Peninsula on the pretext of protecting Arab sheikhs from a rogue ruler and regime. A decade passed since, Saddam is sitting over the bent head of Iraqi people. Saddam is raison de etre for American military bases in Gulf. Americans forces are stationed in Gulf at the expenses being borne by Sheikhdoms.

Episode II

Now Saddam is replaced with Usama bin Laden. Al-qaeda organization and Taliban regime are Republican Guards and Iraq respectively. US has declared war on Taliban, Al-qaeda, Usama, and whoever make mistake to remain neutral in this war, as Bush made in his statement in Congress the other day. A sane person could not endorse what happened in the early hours of September 11 in NY City and Washington D.C. But dust that it has arisen on international political arena could also not be endorsed by we all who believe in just and peaceful settlement of the issue. American leadership has been engaged in worst form of jingoism since. Quick fingers were pointed to Usama and Taliban. Till the writing of these lines, the situation is this that American leadership has declared war on Usama and his terrorist network. Taliban share the blame with him of harboring terrorist network. Afghanistan , people of that that already are breathing in Stone Age, is being pounded with smart bombs and cruise missiles. In a reciprocal gesture, Taliban army has declared holy war on US and whoever comes to their path. Pakistan has sided with US led international alliance. Pakistan is providing logistic support to US forces. More than three air bases of Pakistan are taking US Special Forces to and fro Afghanistan . After Persian Gulf ; American forces have come to South and central Asia to protect what they call interest of free world.

But question is this that is the Taliban really worth of to be attacked and beaten in a war commanded by furriest mightiest army on earth? Is not it like hitting and hunting a sparrow with missile? Are Usama and his terrorist network worth of declaring war on it by no other than those who could destabilize a superpower like Soviet Union leading to its disintegration? Then what real motivation is behind American plan to come physically in this region? Are Taliban really potential danger for peace and stability of region in particular and world in general? Are they capable to harbor nourish and export international terrorism? Have they means and resources to do so? What American intelligence organizations were doing when a secluded person like Usama was masterminding the terrorist attack on US? Where were American tools of eavesdropping which when used by NSA could not let fall a leaf from a tree in backyard unnoticed? When their tools of deciphering and interception could read any electronic communication, can a person living in Afghanistan issue orders and directions to his men in Europe and America unheard unnoticed? Were the terrorist let to commit blunder as Americans let Saddam to commit this when American wanted a big reason to go to Persian Gulf and now to Afghanistan importance of which is being its proximity to Oil and gas rich Central Asia ? May be they had no idea of scope of death and destruction it would bring with its success! May be they were caught unaware as mistakes are part of mortal’s life. Here it would be wise to remember that after the end of communist rule in Afghanistan American policy makers intentionally let Muslim extremist to grow and flourish in region as to some extent that it could become real apprehension for Central Asian States. Enough to seek help and advice of big brother. Muslim Fundamentalism and radicalism had been part of American strategy. Muslim radicals were darling of PANTAGON in the height of cold war. Both had one common enemy, the infidel, atheist USSR . CIA used these forces successfully against soviet threat to so-called free world. All the bad guys, America want to punish today were once on the payroll of CIA. It was CIA that brought Usama to Afghanistan as civil engineer to construct bunker in hilly terrain of Afghanistan to combat with communists.

The Quest for Central Asian Oil.

The region of the Caspian basin and Central Asia has been dubbed as the second Persian Gulf , suggesting that the oil and gas reserves and potentials are of substantial amount. Equally important are the obstacles to getting the oil and gas generate to the open market as the region is land locked. Cross border pipelines, political instability and economic fragility in the region are of worries for big players. Azerbaijan , Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan are major producer of precious natural asset, while Georgia , Uzbekistan are transit states. Peripheral states Armenia , Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan although not producer of either oil or gas, play significance roles in regional matters.

Since the collapse of Soviet Union , American has been trying get unhindered access to Caspian Sea basin and Central Asian oil and gas resources. American Oil giant Exxon Mobil is one of the largest foreign players in developing Central Asian and Far Eastern resources. It has major oil interests in Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan , and gas interests in Turkmenistan and on Russia 's Sakhalin Island to the north of Japan . BP Amco, Shell and other oil giants of West are also engaged in oil exploration in the region. Turkey with the backing of US wants Kashgan oil to flow through a pipeline the Caspian to Baku in Azerbaijan where it can join another pipeline to Turkey ’s Mediterranean coast. It is believed that drivers of U.S. foreign policy vis-à-vis Central Asia and Caspian Sea basin include securing access to the region’s energy resources and pipeline investments for U.S. companies. American policy makers are up for reducing dependence on Persian Gulf energy supplies. China , Russia and Iran are America ’s main rival in the region. They would not let Americans and his lesser partners of Western Europe to exploit oil rich region at the cost of their interests. Here is the point where this great game begins. Americans have now got upper hand in their oil game. World could not point to its real intention and motivation as this would be immoral to raise objection at the times when Americas are collecting remains of those killed in war of insanity. But it is also reality that clash of interest prevails over all agreements. Other players who are active in region would not let Americas unchallenged for time immortal.

As Americans are not alone in the pursuit of oil and gas of Central Asia , the matter of who would control and have say over region would arise in coming times.

Sometimes back Russia secured a contract with Turkmenistan to purchase 30 billion cubic meters of gas each year. This further undermines the trouble-plagued US-backed Tran Caspian Gas Pipeline—a pipeline for Turkmen gas across the Caspian Sea and out to Turkey . Russia sees opportunity and trouble in its Near Abroad. Moscow views the Central Asian region as a natural part of its sphere of influence because of its contiguous borders, centuries of domination, and the large number of ethnic Russians living there. The construction of pipeline networks to China 's western borders, under the control of the China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) and other large Chinese energy companies also opens up the potential for China to exploit the huge energy resources of the former Soviet republics of Central Asia .

A study on China 's energy plans by the US think tank, the Brookings Institute, has already warned about the potential for a strategic realignment between Japan and China to the detriment of the US . Sergei Troush wrote: “One possible tendency might be growing economic and security cooperation between China , Japan , and Korea ... The decreasing importance of the sea-routes in the Indian and Pacific Oceans could see the eventual reshaping of the basic security arrangement between United States and Japan .”

Iran assumes it is the natural protector of Central Asia because of long historical, ethnic, linguistic, and religious ties. Tehran also worries that U.S. military links to Central Asian states are part of a global effort to encircle and isolate it . Iran wants a pipeline to the Persian Gulf where the oil could be shipped to fast growing East Asia market.

Mutual self-interest has brought China and Russia together in the “Shanghai Five” group of nations, along with the Central Asian states of Kazakhstan , Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan . Through the grouping, China has sought to align Russia economically and politically toward China and north-east Asia , while Russia has sought to preserve its traditional influence in Central Asia . The South China Morning Post commented after the last summit of the group in July: “If anything is going to bring the two countries and their two economies closer, it is Russian exports of its vast oil and gas wealth”.

More than economic considerations are at work though. Particularly since the NATO war on Yugoslavia and the subsequent occupation of Kosovo, a feature of Sino-Russian relations is fear that their own separatist strife—as in Chechnya or Xinjiang—will be exploited by the United States to intervene in the region . As for as interest of western industrialist countries are concerned, they are interested in accreditation and passport to explore and invest in the region at their own terms, without any hindrance from or bothering of regional powers. USA is self styled champion and guardian of that goal.

Therefore, it is not difficult to understand real motives behind America ’s military build up in this region. Taliban’s are not real target, they are just scapegoat. Americans were looking for some good reasons and terrorist attacks in NY City and Washington D.C provided the same. American leadership is trying hard to maximize the count of nations under American shield. Taliban, a horde of medieval warriors are to face most modern army on earth .I think that American forces are not to engaging themselves to afghan imbroglio to return after completing the task. They would be here to stay and influence the political and economic course of region. As czars of Russia had obsession of getting access to warm waters of Indian Ocean , Same obsession has been with US policy makers in case of Central Asia . Only the time will tell how much they succeed in their perceived target.

World of gullible, oblivious of all this game is being asked to queue behind Americans. “Either you are with us or with terrorist”; Bush, the neo-Caesar, declares his decree at the dock, arrogantly. But we must be with our own choice. We are neither with terrorist nor with those who conceived to those years back as an extension to their agenda. Both of these are two side of same coin. Both of two represent forces who oppose progressiveness of history. America is trying to shape the world in line with its narrow short sighted interest. No doubt in the favor of a few rich nations and people. It is akin to birth of classic imperialism. Rise of new Roman Empire ! What its target is after Central Asia , only the people sitting with Oval office and Pentagon know. WE the people of this region are certainly at the losers end. There is a saying that, “Every time history repeats itself the price goes up.” And what price world has to pay this time after farce of Gulf War, God knows .

But we should keep our mind and soul free of fear and compulsion to understand and stand with truth. The only weapon of brave and la miserable.