Should the PTI’s propagandists working as the “fifth column” against Pakistan be not declared traitors?

DND Thought CenterShould the PTI's propagandists working as the “fifth column” against Pakistan be...

Islamabad, Pakistan: On February 14, 2024, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a law allowing authorities to confiscate the assets of people convicted of spreading deliberately false information about the military and “discrediting” the government institutions.

Any person if found guilty of the activities mentioned above would now face confiscation of money, moveable and immovable property, assets, and valuables.

   

The law received severe criticism from Western media in the first place, calling the law “barbaric and inhuman”.

The ‘inhuman” law was extensively reported by almost every important Western television channel and newspaper. The discussion forums and current affairs show filled evening hours with the subject for two weeks till such time when Russian state media responded well and asked the Western media about the human rights of Edward Snowden and Julian Assange and the “inhuman” treatment by the hands of western states they are facing since decades. Not only two whistleblowers whose lives are restricted by the Western government, but the Russian media had a long list of famous cases from Western history about people accused of being “traitors” who were tried, punished, executed, shot to death, and hanged in the last 80 years.

Citing over 100 names from Norway, Germany, Poland, Sweden, and the United States, Russian media told the Western human rights defenders that no country on earth can survive unless it takes punitive actions against those who harm their country for personal interests. After receiving a quiet “filled” response, Western media nowadays is not talking about special laws enacted by Russia.

While following debates that have historical perspectives, it was quite understandable that crimes that make someone “traitor” include; the dissemination of patently false information against the Armed Forces, state bodies that exercise their authority to control terrorism, and public calls to carry out activities directed against state security.

If someone is convicted under the aforementioned articles, their money, assets, and property can be confiscated. The punishment also includes stripping convicted individuals of special, military, and honorary titles, ranks, and state awards.

The list provided by Russian media about cases of “crime against state’ punished by Western countries in the last 80 years includes; dissemination of fake news (several cases during World War II); discrediting the army; making calls for extremism; violations of territorial integrity; activities aimed against national security; calls for imposing sanctions on country of origin while living abroad, assisting in the implementation of decisions made by foreign organizations against the country of origin.

Anti-Russia and pro-Russia discussions in Western media confirm that “discrediting” the military and the elected government of the country of origin while living abroad is enough to try someone for treachery.  If someone applies the same category to thousands of so-called rights activists, bloggers, and social media activists working against Pakistan while living abroad, they should have been stripped off their civil rights they should have been jailed and their properties should have been confiscated. Characters like Shahbaz Gill, Dr. Asif, Dr Moeed Pirzada, and Atif Khan who are overtly discrediting Pakistan while living abroad are prime examples of traitors who are still at large due to puny laws and indifferent replies of government in Pakistan that allow them to make mockery of their country while living abroad.

Taking the lead from one of the speeches of Russian President Vladimir Putin, one can safely say that the West had a long history of using or creating traitors while offering them asylums, working visas, citizenships, and resident cards and use them as a “fifth column” to destroy the country West wishes to destroy.

The recent protest arranged by PTI outside the Head Office of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank in the United States is surely an act of treachery under the laid rules by the West since World War II. Writing letters to the IMF to stop providing loans to Pakistan and contacting the United Nations to try Pakistan for (alleged) human rights abuses surely fall under the category of treachery. One should remember that protesters who were led by Shahbaz Gill, Dr. Asif, and Atif Khan also raised slogans against the Pakistan Army.

PTI workers outside IMF Head Office
PTI workers outside IMF Head Office

The PTI leadership has been trying to sabotage Pakistan’s interests in every possible way and these elements hollowed out the country’s roots. PTI’s global team is collaborating overtly with known anti-Pakistan US think tanks for organizing the demonstrations while several US and international NGOs are also attending or organizing anti-Pakistan demonstrations.

It should be noted that since 2022, PTI has been working closely with US lobbying firms, and Atif Khan in his Twitter message claimed that his party paid 25,000 dollars per month to the American firm. It was also reported that PTI hired a US firm before the General Elections 2024 to discredit the process of General Elections 2024 and many US newspapers tried to create doubts about electoral processes that took place in Pakistan. History is a witness that PTI has hired foreign lobbying firms in the past in 2021, 2022, 2023, and most recently in 2024 to make foreign propaganda against Pakistan.

The foremost target of PTI is to create economic instability in Pakistan along with undermining public confidence in the government. Propaganda with the help of these lobbying firms is fueling false narratives against Pakistan’s military leadership and encouraging interference from US officials in Pakistan’s politics.

For a long, elements like Dr. Shahbaz Gill, Dr. Asif, Dr. Moeed Pirzada, and Atif Khan have been working as the “fifth column”. Should they be not declared traitors?; their citizenship should not be revoked?; their properties should not be confiscated? and their pictures should not be displayed in prominent places so that people can see them as traitors.

I have learned to hate all traitors, and there is no disease that I spit on more than treachery.—Aeschylus

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