2. Pakistan

DIVIDED IT STANDS4

There is nothing under the sun quite like the new, enormously vigorous, fiercely independent state of Pakistan. The seventh largest country on earth and the most important Moslem nation, it is a geographic freak. The country is divided into two parts separated from each other by a thousand miles of India. But new as it is, and divided as it will always be, Pakistan is a brightly hopeful spot on the darkening map of Asia. It is our strong new friend.

Pakistan is the world's first nation to have been conceived by a poet. This was Mohammed Iqbal, who wrote mystic poems foretelling a new Moslem nation that would arise in British India. Then in 1940, a whip-sharp patriot named Mohammed Ali Jinnah caught the vision. Seven years later, when India gained independence, Pakistan was born.

The new nation was founded on purely religious principles. British India contained a large Moslem minority who with fierce determination guarded the religion handed down to them by the Prophet Mohammed. When the Moslems finally gained a separate state they boldly wrote in their constitution: "The entire universe belongs to God Almighty, and the authority which He has delegated to the State of Pakistan is a sacred trust."

When the country was launched foreign offices around the world thought it might last six months, then fall back into India. Editors of one world-wide news service were advised by the boss "not to bother with Pakistan because next year it won't be around." Sure enough, disaster struck immediately.

The rules whereby Pakistan was formed were drawn by the British in great haste. Partition from India was announced for the first time on June 3, 1947; seventy-two days later an entire subcontinent was divided up and Pakistan was on its own. It

____________________
4
From "Pakistan: Divided It Stands," article by James A. Michener, author of Tales of the South Pacific and other works, both fiction and nonfiction, dealing with Asia. Reader's Digest. 65:136-46. November 1954. Reprinted by permission.

-47-

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U. S. Policy in Asia
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page 1
  • Preface 3
  • Contents 5
  • I. the Challenge We Face 11
  • Ii. the Arc of Free Asia 37
  • An Unsentimental Look at India 42
  • 2. Pakistan 47
  • Iii. Our Economic Program 116
  • Using the Colombo Plan 128
  • One Man's Asian Revolution 135
  • Iv. Arms and Ideas 142
  • V. the Problem of China 167
  • Bibliography 185
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