by Qudsia Farhat
Every society survives the test of time if it identifies its core values and endeavours to safeguard them. Core values are derived from belief system, faith, social norms and philosophies catering for different facets of life including social order, cultural norms and permissible practices in a functional society.
In the current era of conflict and chaos, it is no longer feasible to physically conquer another country, since organizations like the United Nations and other bodies for enforcing peace have the capability of intervening to redress aggression.
Unfortunately, the desire to dominate others still persists and ambitious states venture to target the core values of others in a bid to promote their hegemonic designs and launch campaigns contrary to their fundamental philosophy of life and value system. Hostile nations launch incessant efforts comprising negative themes and unconstructive dialogues with loaded assertions to attract the attention of their target audience. The aspiration of the hostile nation is to reduce the faith of the target country in its own core values and replace them with the ones the enemy wishes to instill in the minds of the target. In this incessant campaign, mind is the ultimate target and to conquer it, media is the primary tool.
Since the Indian Sub-Continent’s partition in 1947, India has never forgiven Pakistan. Orthodox and extremist Hindu Brahmins considered the division as a desecration of “Mother India” and swore to avenge the “wrong”. Ever since the creation of Pakistan, India has been conspiring to destabilize Pakistan and force it into submission to India. In 1971, Bengalis were sponsored to rebel and breakaway from Pakistan. India attempted to keep fledgling Bangladesh under its influence but subsequent governments spurned Indian overtures till the Awami League, the original factotum of India returned to power. Sheikh Hasina, current leader of Awami League, under Indian tutelage is following orders in letter and spirit to rankle Pakistan and badmouth it constantly.
[box] Every society survives the test of time if it identifies its core values and endeavours to safeguard them. Core values are derived from belief system, faith, social norms and philosophies catering for different facets of life including social order, cultural norms and permissible practices in a functional society.[/box]
Indian rulers have been following the prescribed machinations of Chanakya, alias Kautilya to promote propaganda, treachery and deception to subvert each neighbour and try and drive them away from their core values. One of Chanakyan principles to practice guile and deceit, held dear by the Indians is: “Do not be very upright in your dealings for you would see by going to the forest that straight trees are cut down while crooked ones are left standing.”
Apart from their own master of subterfuge Chanakya, Indians have received help from the Soviets and Israelis too. Yuri Bezmenov, a trained KGB agent spent many years in India under cover as a “journalist” during the 60’s and taught his protégés the art of ideological subversion as a technique of cultural warfare, meant to distort core values.
His methodology, a gradual process to change the perception of reality, where despite the availability of abundance of information, citizens of a country cannot make out the reality, comprised four steps: Demoralizea nation (15-20 years). Expose your ideology to target nation’s “soft heads”. At the higher stage, the citizens of that country start brainwashing their own countrymen. Destabilization (2-5 years) in which target country does not care about patterns. Essentials like Defense, Economy and Polity are attacked. The third step is bringing the target country to Crisis in such a way that violent change happens, which is followed by the next stage. “Normalization”, which is “tongue-in-cheek” and cynical; because “Normalization” means adherence of the enemy country to one’s own ideology. The people who were instrumental in bringing the enemy country to this stage are “lined up against the wall and shot dead”.
With this kind of guidance, our adversary after having construed that Pakistani nation is too resilient to be conquered through conventional means, started venomous propaganda against our core cultural values using indirect approach and employing the weapon of “Soft Image”. Consequently Indian dramas and films found their way into Pakistani culture making handful of loyal viewership, without any noteworthy official resistance by Pakistan. In fact government issued licenses to different channels for revenue earning remaining oblivious to the assaults on its cultural values. Media invaders were also facilitated by Pakistani viewers who liked Indian films, Turkish dramas and foreign advertisements. Resisting voices were too weak to stop the foreign cultural invasion. Foreign media got a free hand to create mistrust among Pakistani audience, especially the youth. Hostile cartoons and animated caricatures captured loyal audience who were fed dissenting thoughts to challenge the teachings of Islam, either indirectly or through subliminal programming.
Ironically, own media houses appear to be overwhelmed by enhancing their income and minting money. Their efforts to counter foreign propaganda lack motivation and conviction. In this regard special efforts are needed to reinvigorate media to protect Pakistani interests and project its image. Pakistan is endowed with a few patriotic and responsible media owners too, who have taken up the cudgel to contest foreign media foray designed to subvert the minds of Pakistani youth against ideological foundations of Pakistan.
It is an uphill task and a long battle, but opinion builders and bona fide intellectuals need to muster their strength to thwart the nefarious designs of the enemy to instill into the minds of the nation, especially the youth that Pakistan is our motherland and the last hope of our survival. The image of Pakistan must be well maintained and its prestige protected. This is only possible if media holds Pakistan in high esteem and does not allow any hostile propagation against Pakistan. All patriotic Pakistanis are strong supporters of the two-nation theory. Media owners should be encouraged to respect their thoughts and opinions. Any propaganda designed to create skepticism about the ideology of Pakistan deeply hurts their feelings. Media should counter all such propagation and protect the domestic audience. Core values in Pakistan are profoundly associated with the fundamental ideology of Pakistan. It is the duty of media houses to hold own value system in high esteem. The same media that is used to distort core values, can also be used to strengthen them.