Zaheer Bhatti The common man views, the US by obtrusive use of insulting vocabulary in its aid package about Pakistan as being ungrateful, impolite and indecent, and calls for corrective measures because the language as well as intent of some of the provisions, have nullified any goodwill or welfare intended for the government and people of Pakistan. To discerning defence analysts and strategists, it has laid bare American designs. But the Pakistan government not only terms the passage of the bill an achievement, but adds another feather to its cap in claiming that unlike in the past it was not being asked to do more. Pray When you have already done and committed much more than expected, what more remains to be asked? The exception taken by the people of Pakistan are being ridiculed and cynically termed as ghairat (national dignity) lobby, is not merely over disparaging insinuations against Pakistan in the Kerry-Lugar Bill, but about US attempt to legitimise the presence of its contractors - the 'rogue Second Army in Pakistan in the name of security of American personnel - which automatically gets stamped if the aid is accepted. This will facilitate Richard (not John) Lugars task under the American Senate Act S1707, which authorises the US to move in and dismantle the nuclear facilities in what they may chose to call 'failing states, as was done in the Soviet Union. Anyway, the Cabinet has stamped its approval despite massive public reaction including that of the armed forces. While the issue was still being debated in the House, the government sends its foreign minister to the US, who comes back to report that an explanatory note was good enough to address Pakistani concerns. The Parliament session was prorogued soon after the address of the minister without a House vote on the issue, which reflects the veiled intentions of the government. Going by what Mr Qureshi submitted on the floor of the House, it showed that he had gone for briefings on how to defend the bill in the Pakistani Parliament. With the government taking no exception to the insulting references about the countrys armed forces in the first instance, and trying to gloss over it as a mere case of choice of words, Pakistans Military Establishment was forced to express serious reservations over insinuations about the army in the much trumpeted American Assistance Package. The army chief having expressed these concerns after thorough consultation with his top brass, was nevertheless quick and careful to put his weight behind the Parliament whom he termed as the ultimate authority of the country to agitate the issue with appropriate channels. It is unfortunate that instead of finding strength in the declaration from the armed forces, the government found fault with the pre-emption by the army chief. This attitude of the government strengthens the belief among informed circles of the country, that not only was the government a party to the inclusion of the demeaning clauses against the army in the aid package, but an accomplice to its efforts in downsizing and de-capacitating the institution. At this juncture, instead of taking issue with the 'long-term strategic partner, the government circles have questioned the army chiefs meetings with the CM of one of the major provinces of the country. Funny is it not, that it suits the government if all kinds of American and British envoys meet anyone they like and discuss whatever pleases them; so much for their trust and respect for the institution they frequently call upon for help. Quite plainly, no country worth its salt will allow any outsider to require limiting the role of state institutions, particularly the armed forces and their intelligence arm in the affairs of the state, dictate their promotion policy, insinuate the presence and support to terrorist camps in specified areas of the country, demand information and access to the countrys strategic assets and expertise in the guise of preventing nuclear non-proliferation and seek to bring these assets under a more pliable civilian control, or force a one-sided 'non-interference regime over Pakistan in the context of its inimical neighbours India and now Afghanistan, without requiring them to do the same. One wonders how, the presidential camp saw this kind of American aid in line with the policies of the Pakistan government. The writer is a freelance columnist.