Waziristan 1936-37 :: The Problems of NWFP and their solutions ::

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"Recently, Mr. Daniel Markey has written a report, "Securing Pakistan’s Tribal Belt." Following book, "Waziristan 1936-37," published in 1938, does not only furnish the evidence that the United States is on the footsteps of the British Empire but also offer some interesting solutions for the United States, NATO and Pakistan.

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FOREWORD
BY
FIELD-MARSHAL SIR CLAUD JACOB, G.C.B., G.C.S.I., K.C.M.G.
AND
SIR MICHAEL O’DWYER, G.C.I.E., K.C.S.I.

MANY people are asking why there are periodical outbursts of lawlessness in Waziristan and why the country has not settled down. This book will give the answer.

The author, Lieutenant-Colonel C. E. Bruce, C.S.I., C.I.E., C.B.E., has spent many years on the North-West Frontier and in Baluchistan. His father before him had the advantage of serving many years with Sir Robert Sandeman both in Baluchistan and in the Derajat.

We, whose signatures are appended, also spent many years in Baluchistan, on the North-West Frontier and in the Punjab. We know with what success Sir Robert Sandeman made Baluchistan into a well-ordered and prosperous province. We also know that he never had a failure. It was he who opened up the Gumal Pass, although the politicals in the Punjab had been sitting before those mountain ranges in Waziristan for years and did nothing but indulge in countless expeditions, which were really " burn and scuttle " affairs which subdued the tribe or tribes concerned for a time, but were unable to prevent a return to lawlessness as before. For over seventy years did this policy persist, until after the Great War, when it was evident that we must occupy Waziristan up to the Durand Line. First of all, roads were made to enable our troops to move in any direction they pleased. Then trade was encouraged and the country opened up. That policy was pursued with success till 1931; but since then we have lost faith in ourselves and the tribes have lost faith in us. Most important of all, the country needs a firm, consistent policy and Political Officers of the right stamp to carry it out. Our failure in recent years is probably due to the absence of both. As Lawrence wrote in the 1857 Mutiny, " When have we ever failed when we acted vigorously; when have we succeeded when guided by timorous counsels? "

Lieutenant-Colonel Bruce explains all this in his book, and we strongly recommend the study of it to all those who want to see a Frontier under proper control.

Are there no Political Officers of Sir Robert Sandeman’s type left in India ? It will be a sad day for us if we fail to produce good men as we did in the past.

A good deal more could be written on this subject, but we think Lieutenant-Colonel Bruce has fully interpreted the views of those of us who have the welfare of the Frontier tribes at heart, and who are much concerned at the wavering policy on the North- West Frontier during recent years.

Having two borders the Durand Line and the Administrative Border on the North-West Frontier is the primary cause of all this unrest, and the sooner we occupy and administer all the tribal territory right up to the Durand Line the better will be our relations with the people who live in what might well be classified as No Man’s Land.

As Lieutenant-Colonel Bruce’s father wrote many years ago :

" There is only one true remedy and that is to do away with all feeble makeshifts such as ‘ Protected Areas ‘ and by the exercise of a just and civilizing control secure safety of life and property and the development of the country and its resources. Thus only can we hope to secure the respect of the tribes on both sides of the border and bring them definitely in on our side, a source of^strength instead of an ever-present danger."

A French observer recently wrote :

" The question is not whether England has the right to keep India, but whether she has the right to leave it."

If we are to keep it we must have a secure and contented North-West Frontier.

CLAUD W. JACOB, Field-Marshal, M. F. O’DWYER, I.C.S.,,
Late Lieutenant-Governor of Punjab.

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PREFACE

To the authors of the books given in the Bibliography at the end of this note on Waziristan and to many others also I am indebted in varying measure. Some of them I have quoted from. Others I have read and studied with the object of seeing how the problem of making these tribesmen into our friends can best be solved. For no policy which has not got this as its main object can, I believe, possibly succeed.

Should, then, any of my readers be sufficiently interested in the subject to wish to go farther into the matter, I think they would find from a perusal of these authorities that the characteristics of these warrior-tribes all over the world are much the same and that the only system which has any hope of carrying out this object is one based on the principles advocated in this note call it " the Sandeman policy/’ or " Indirect Rule " (as it is called in Africa), or what you will.

For such a system, based as it is on the welfare of the tribes- men committed to our charge, must, in the long run, tend to make them into loyal subjects a source of strength to the Empire instead of an ever-present danger; whereas the alternative policy, which fails to take this aspect of the problem sufficiently into consideration, " leaves them half-savage and embitters them against their rulers."

The one policy deserves to succeed. The other does not.

C. E. BRUCE.

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CONTENTS

I. WAZIRISTAN AND THE FRONTIER GENERALLY

II. THE WAZIRISTAN DISTURBANCES OF 1936-37

III. THE BASIS OF THE TRIBAL ORGANIZATION AND THE TRIBES- MEN’S MEANS OF LIVELIHOOD

IV. THE LOSS OF THE HEADMEN’S POWER AND INFLUENCE

V. TRIBAL INDEPENDENCE

VI. TRIBAL AND VILLAGE RESPONSIBILITY

VII. EXPENSE OF SUCH A POLICY

VIII. GOVERNMENT’S TERMS TO THE WAZIRISTAN TRIBES, 1937

IX. ROADS A MEANS TO AN END AND NOT AN END IN THEMSELVES

X. WHAT IS MEANT BY "SUPPORTING" THE HEADMEN

XI. THE OUTLAW PROBLEM

XII. THE RESPONSIBILITY OF THE DISTRICT AND POLITICAL OFFICERS AS WELL AS THE HEADMEN

XIII. FUTURE POLICY

XIV. THE END AND OBJECT OF OUR POLICY

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BIBLIOGRAPHY

MAP 1 THE NORTH-WEST FRONTIERS OF INDIA, SHOWING THE NORTH-WEST FRONTIER PROVINCE (ITS TRIBAL TERRITORY AND ADMINISTERED DISTRICTS) AND BALUCHISTAN

MAP 2 WAZIRISTAN

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CHAPTER I. Waziristan and the Frontier Generally

" It may be that we can no longer share the faith
which from our fathers we received,
It may be that our doom is to despair where they
with joy believed."
" Where faith fails, all fails."

THE heritage left to us on the North- West Frontiers of India, after the annexation of the Punjab in 1849, was a heritage of districts inhabited by tribes from whom our immediate predecessors the Sikhs had exacted revenue, more often than not, at the point of the bayonet, dominated by a long strip of mountainous tribal territory, the home of the warrior-tribes, who owned allegiance to no one, ever at war amongst them- selves and a constant menace to the peace of the " border. "

It is this strip of tribal territory, separating- India from Afghanistan, which has always constituted the main Frontier problem.

At the present time, the north-west frontiers of India are divided, for purposes of administration, into the North-West Frontier Province (a Governor’s province) and Baluchistan, 4vhich includes the Khanate of Kalat (a Baluch or Indian State).

Waziristan is the southernmost portion of the belt of tribal territory which separates the administered (or " settled ") districts of the North- West Frontier Province from Afghanistan, while immediately to the south of it lies the Zhob district of Baluchistan.

To deal with the problem of the Frontier tribes which inhabited the North-West Frontiers of India, two very different systems were adopted in the past.

(1) The " Sandeman System," called after its great pro- genitor, which was adopted with such marked success in Baluchistan; and

(2) The " Close Border System," adopted for the remainder of the Frontier. The fundamental difference between these two policies was that Sandeman, like Marshal Lyautey who admittedly followed in his footsteps looked at the problem from the point of view of " the welfare of the tribes " and realized the " moral obligation " which this entailed.

His was a policy of "peaceful penetration/’ based on "know- ledge and sympathy " with the tribal point of view, its object the gradual civilization and betterment of the tribes.

That is the point I wish to stress. The ultimate goal and the end and aim of his policy was " the welfare of the tribes " committed to his charge. And it was because the tribes came, by degrees, to realize how much better off they were under his administration that, gradually and almost imperceptibly, Sandeman was able to absorb the whole strip of territory which constitutes the present province of Baluchistan.

And the measure of his success can be gauged from the fact that, through all the convulsions which have lately been disturbing India, Baluchistan, with a few very minor exceptions, has remained " contentedly quiet/’

Why did Sandeman’s policy succeed ? Surely because it fulfilled so entirely the supreme test of all successful administration " the welfare of the people/’ the welfare of the tribes.

THE " CLOSE BORDER " SYSTEM. (See Map No. 1.)

The " Close Border " system, called sometimes " a policy of non-intervention tempered by punitive expeditions/’ was the very reverse of this. It hardly considered this aspect of the case. For, under that system, this belt of tribal territory (see the area between the red lines on the plan attached) was left not only in a state of anarchy and chaos, but continued to be a sanctuary for outlaws and raiding gangs who harried the districts.

That is to say, while, under the Sandeman system, the administrative border was carried up to the Afghan frontier, this was not the case as regards the remaining tribes which came under the political sphere of influence first of the Punjab and later of the North- West Frontier Province. Here, between the " settled " districts of Hazara, Peshawar, Kohat, Bannu and Dera Ismail Khan still administered more or less on the Punjab model there remained a belt of semi-independent tribal territory, which constituted a perpetual menace to the peace and happiness of our tax-paying subjects within the districts.

Under a policy of non-intervention, like the " Close Border " system, the only real redress which the authorities had when the tribes misbehaved themselves was fines and expeditions, which last, punishing as it too often did the innocent rather than the guilty, inevitably left behind it " a legacy of hatred and contempt."

Even when compelled by force of circumstances eventually to take over the passes, the " Close Border " still refused to assume control of the " intervening " country.

MIDDLEMEN.

Another serious flaw in the policy of non-intervention was that British political officers, being forbidden, or certainly discouraged, to cross the ft border, " had, perforce, to depend very greatly on ‘ ‘ middlemen " (or go-betweens) in their dealings with and for their knowledge of the tribes. It can, there- fore, well be imagined what enormous opportunities this system gave these " middlemen " for intrigue and for amassing wealth. And it would, indeed, have been wonderful if many had not succumbed to such temptation, much to the detriment of any really friendly relations with the tribes. To such men the less a British political officer knew about the tribes the better pleased they were.

On the evils of this system of " middlemen " the late Lord Lytton gave countless warnings, as did Sir Robert Warburton, whose unrivalled knowledge of, and influence over, the Afridi tribe were able to counteract, to a large extent, the evils of the system. But even he gave it as his " firm and solemn conviction " that the majority of our troubles on the Frontier were due " to the evil intrigues and machinations of these men." .

Being just as convinced, as was Warburton, of the truth of this allegation, I cannot help wondering whether, when we reverted to a policy of " Protected Areas " in Waziristan a policy with many of the inherent defects of the " Close Border " system the troubles which came down upon us were not largely due to these causes.

FAILURE OF THE " CLOSE BORDER."

At any rate, there is no gainsaying the fact that the history of the Frontier is a long succession of failures on the part of the " Close Border " system.

Why? Surely because it failed so completely to fulfil the supreme test " the welfare of the tribes/’

And the measure of its failure is to be seen in the long list of punitive expeditions which have blackened the history of our dealings with the tribes along this portion of the Frontier.

And to this long list of expeditions we have now been compelled to add yet another one, with all its attendant loss in lives and money.

To what must we attribute this failure ? To the fact that, instead of carrying the policy of the gradual Sandemanization of Waziristan to its logical conclusion, we reverted to a half- hearted policy of " Protected Areas." Is that the reason?

* " Eighteen Years in the Khyber," by Sir Robert Warburton.

CHAPTER II. The Waziristan Disturbances of 1936-37.

THE WAZIRISTAN POLICY OF 1922-23.

IN all the comments on the Waziristan disturbances, I have found few which have attempted to explain what were the root- causes of our present troubles in that country or what was the real reason for the present " Rising "; and, with the exception of an able article in Truth of the 9th June, 1937, none which have tried to put forward a case for the tribes themselves.

One of Sir Robert Sandeman’s great principles, and one which contributed very largely to his success in Baluchistan, was that he never assumed that an offending tribe was " the sole sinner and never sinned against/’ Is it too much to say that, once again, despite this lesson, we did assume that the tribesmen were solely to blame ? But were they ?

About the year 1922-23, after years of vacillation, a policy, built more or less on the foundations of the Sandeman policy, was adopted in Waziristan a policy of " control from within " and of supporting the tribal headmen in carrying out their primary duties of maintaining law and order within their own tribes.

Razmak was occupied by a force of all arms. Later, Wana was reoccupied. A network of roads was made. The tribes- men were given employment as " khassadars " (levies), and every effort was made to bring those " moral and material benefits/’ of which they were so sorely in need, within the tribesmen’s reach.

THE SUCCESS OF THE WAZIRISTAN POLICY OF 1922-23.

Any reader who wishes to convince himself as to the unqualified success of that policy can easily do so by referring to the Annual Reports of the years 1923-30 (and indeed for some years afterwards), as well as to the Press commentaries during the same period.

If he takes the trouble to do so, he will find that, by the adoption of a policy of rebuilding on " existing frameworks," not only were outlaws from the neighbouring districts practically wiped out (and without outlaws with a local knowledge of the districts " raids " do not occur), but that peace also reigned both inside and across our borders. He will find that so great was the success that even the most sceptical were converted.

QUESTIONS TO BE ANSWERED.

In face of these facts and of the incontrovertible proofs which are open to all to examine, surely the question we should ask ourselves is not, as argued by a correspondent in The Times of the 20th April, " Why is it that after some fifteen years of occupation and so-called administration, that country {Waziristan] is still as uncivilized and unmanageable as if it had never been occupied at all? "

No, that is not the’ question.

The questions we should ask ourselves are two :

(1) What were the reasons for the success of the Government’s policy in Waziristan from, say, 1923 to 1933? and

(2) Why is it that, after ten years of universally admitted success, Waziristan has again flared up and we are once again faced with vast expenditure on the Frontier ?

The fact that I spent the years 1923 to 1928 in, or on the borders of, Waziristan, either as D.C. of one of the neighbouring districts or as " Resident, Waziristan/’ and had, therefore, a great deal to do with the carrying out, if not the inauguration, of the said policy a policy which had been very strongly advocated by my father some forty years before may be considered as giving me certain qualifications for speaking on the present situation in Waziristan that, and the fact that, like my father before me, I spent some thirty-five years on India’s North-West Frontiers.

What was the policy then adopted? It was a policy of " peaceful penetration " and of gradual " Sandemanization," in commenting on the success of which The Times remarked, " It seems the Pathan can after all be Sandemanized."

Was The Times, then, wrong? Were the almost universal tributes to the success of the policy entirely unjustified? No, I do not think so. On the contrary, I believe that our present troubles have been due not to a failure of that policy, but to a failure on our part to interpret accurately what were the causes of our success. And I believe that, as a consequence of that want of recognition, we subsequently went back on, and failed to carry out, many of the fundamental principles on which the success, not only of that policy but also that of Sir Robert Sandeman in Baluchistan, had been based.

The very fact that there are officers who believe that the present policy of " Protected Areas " is the same policy as the one which had proved so successful seems to prove as I will show later how blind they were to the real causes of the success.

CHAPTER III. The Basis *of the Tribal Organization and the Tribesmen’s Means of Livelihood.

DESPERATELY poor, for the most part, with little or no cultivation to supply their needs, and only a precarious living to be made out of their flocks, the tribesmen had, in the past, depended very greatly on " raiding " to make up any deficiencies in their means of livelihood.

Believing with Marshal Lyautey that " the right of colonization is only justified by the moral and material benefits extended by the colonizing nation/’ Sandeman recognized the fact that, while our tax-paying subjects, in " the settled districts/’ were entitled to protection against the depredations of the tribesmen, once this had been secured the latter also had the right to live. In short, he never lost sight of the fact that, if " raiding " was put a stop to, both justice and humanity alike demanded that the tribesmen should be given something better to replace the means of livelihood which was being taken from them.

Believing again with Lyautey that " in every country there are " existing frameworks " to do away with which must lead to anarchy "; also that " in every tribe there is a ruling- class, born to rule, without which nothing can be done/’ Sandeman, " finding the power and influence of the headmen much diminished, proceeded to rebuild it under competent chiefs and ‘headmen."

CONTROL FROM WITHIN.

Recognizing, also, that " control from within " was necessary to give adequate support to the headmen in keeping law and order, his policy became one of " peaceful penetration/’ generally at the request of the tribes themselves. " Peaceful penetration/’ in turn, led to the development of the country and its-‘ resources, to the benefit of the tribes concerned. In other words, by making their interests his own, Sandeman proved to the tribes that, in place of their independence, he had some- thing much better to give them namely, justice. In short, it was a policy of civilization built on the rock of " justice " justice to the poor and the oppressed and one which therefore completely fulfilled " the supreme test " the welfare of the masses.

Let us not forget, however, that, bef6re Sandeman could obtain success, he had to rebuild his administration on the old foundations, which had been falling into decay.

We, in 1923, like Sandeman in Baluchistan, had penetrated into Waziristan and had taken over " control from within, " and it was up to us, therefore, to see that the other funda- mental principles by which his policy was governed were also carried out. That is to say, we had to use that " control " for the welfare of the tribes themselves, as only by doing so could we hope to make these wild but fascinating tribesmen into our friends instead of our enemies. We also had to prove to them that loyalty and good conduct paid.

Whether we failed or succeeded, the history of those ten years and the statistics showing an amazing decrease in crime, both in the neighbouring districts and in Waziristan itself, will, I am certain, amply demonstrate. At least, we tried.

THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE COUNTRY AND ITS RESOURCES IN THE INTERESTS OF THE TRIBES.

But have we continued to do so ? Have 1 we continued to develop the country and its resources in the interests of the tribes? That is the point.

For instance, having very rightly considered that " control from within " was necessary, if we were to give adequate support to the headmen, ought we not to have seen that, if this support was to be effective, we must not shirk our responsibilities, but gradually spread our influence over the whole country? " Having/’ in Lord Roberts’s words, " refused to let the tribes look for government to any other Power except ourselves/’ had we any right to refuse them the protection and support " which our control of the country should have implied "?

MORAL OBLIGATION TO THE TRIBES.

Instead, however, of doing this and thus proving to them the benefits of our occupation, did we not try to excuse our- selves from carrying out our moral obligations by pretending that the tribesmen so love their independence that, rather than lose this, they would prefer that " the intervening tribal areas " should remain in a state of chaos and anarchy? At any rate, that is a question we must ask ourselves. "

The State may refuse to extend its responsibilities, but for the fate of the Pathan clans, within the Durand line [whether we like it or not], the British Government is responsible. For the Government to pretend that there is any question of maintaining the independence of the tribes is a fiction which cannot pass current with honest men." (Yet, when it suits us to do so, we still go on trying to maintain that fiction.) " Both economically and in every other way they are dependent on us. If their headmen, at our solicitation, consign valuable strategic positions to us, surrender outlaws and maintain law and order, thereby often fixing a halter round their necks and inheriting relentless blood-feuds, are we entitled to shirk our responsibilities? " These words were written many years ago. But do they not hold equally good to-day?

CHAPTER IV. The Loss of the Headmen’s Power and Influence.

ACCUSATIONS AGAINST THE HEADMEN.

AT any rate, before we accuse the headmen of having lost their power and influence to control their tribesmen about the only reason I have seen given for the present " Rising " ought we not, first, to ask ourselves, " Why is it that these same head- men did have the requisite power and influence, for so many years and now no longer have it?"? And, again, whether we ourselves have not been greatly to blame for the decrease in their power and influence. Is it a case of " Qui s’excuse, s’accuse " ?

TRIBAL GRIEVANCES.

For example, was there no justification for the tribal grievances set forth by Truth’s correspondent?

After we had reconquered Waziristan we certainly did agree (about 1922-23), as he says, that, all things being equal, " preference for all contracts and supplies " would be given to the tribesmen concerned. And during the ten years I am speaking of every effort was made to carry out this pledge. Skilled labour might sometimes have to be given to " down country " or even " Hindu " contractors, but unskilled labour was given to the tribesmen.

Perhaps a specific example of the principles on which we worked may be of interest to the reader.

HINDU CONTRACTOR’S STORY.

The road from Sarwekai to Wana was being made. When completed it was known that we should require a contract for the " mails " from Jandola to Sarwekai and on to Wana by motor. This road passes through tribal territory. A Bannu Hindu contractor, who had run " mail " contracts for many years, applied for the contract. He was a good business man with plenty of experience.

He also had " capital " behind him to carry out the work successfully. The tribal headmen, without
assistance, had none of these qualifications. So, the headmen, through whose limits the road passed, were called in and the case put to them. Then they and the contractor got together and, with assistance from us, a working agreement was arrived at. The contractor agreed to open a school for tribal motor drivers at Sarwekai, who were to be ready to take over as soon as the mail contract came into force. And, I hope and believe, this was done.

In short, the Hindu contractor was to run the business part of the transaction, the labour was to be tribal, and the benefits to be shared to the mutual satisfaction of all concerned. In this manner the work would be satisfactorily done and our pledges to the tribes carried out.

How far we went against these principles subsequently, as described by Truth’s correspondent, I cannot say, as I left Waziristan in 1928 when, according to him, the change first began to take place.

All I can say is that to carry out these pledges, even at that time, required incessant vigilance and a very close watch being kept on the persistent efforts many of them subterranean in nature made by both Hindu and " down-country " contractors often surreptitiously assisted by self-interested persons to get the works into their hands.

No one will argue that we were not Justified in trying to cut down exorbitant rates, but to do this it should not have been necessary to have given " an increasing amount to Hindu contractors " which, if Truth’s correspondent is correct, is what we subsequently did do. Indeed, as Mahsud and Wazir tribal contractors became more experienced, surely more, and not less, work should have been given to them.

They may not have been justified in their grievances, but at least we ought to ask how far we ourselves may have been to blame for the present state of affairs.

FUTILE EXCUSES.

As far back as 1902 my father pointed out how we had induced the headmen to cede to us portions of their country in the hope, at least on their part, that by doing so they would be ensuring a strong government, ready and willing to support them in keeping order; but, " having appropriated what we wanted, " we left the remainder of the country in a state of chaos and anarchy, refusing to give the headmen the requisite support therein and then turned round and put forward " the threadbare excuse which has served to cover most of our political failures on the Frontier that they (the headmen) possess no authority and have no influence over their clansmen. "

Is it merely a coincidence that now that we have been faced with yet another " political failure " on the Frontier we are falling back on the same old excuse? And is the real reason, for the headmen’s loss of power attributable to the same causes, namely, to our shirking our responsibilities? For, since these words were written we have penetrated much farther into Waziristan and have taken over additional control.

We should, therefore, have been able to give them even greater support. Yet, still the same old problem confronts us and still the same old threadbare excuses are being given:

" The headmen have no power," " The tribesmen so love their independence that they cannot be controlled by their headmen. "

Of course, they prefer independence if they see that there is little or no benefit coming to them from " control. " But when we say that " the tribesmen are anxious to benefit economically from the policy of peaceful penetration/ or rather to participate in the pecuniary benefits which the construction of roads brings with it," this is certainly correct. But, on the other side, we must remember that they are not willing that the pecuniary benefits should go only to the few, which is so often if not invariably the case when " control " is inadequate. They are certainly " sturdier in their pleas for independence " if they think we are not carrying out our side of the bargain. The young men are certainly " hostile," if they see, as they often do see, that, owing to our refusal to extend " control," the benefits are not fairly distributed.

If by saying that " the existing policy . . . has accomplished much " it is meant to imply that the " existing policy is the one which proved so successful from 1923 onwards, I cannot agree that it is the same policy. Because a so-called policy of " peaceful penetration " which refuses to penetrate or, if it does penetrate, refuses to extend " peace "; and a policy of " protected areas " which refuses to protect is not that policy.

And it most certainly has nothing in common with Sandeman’s policy. Such a policy may have brought temporary peace and security to our fellow-subjects, but did it bring justice, security and peace to the majority of the tribesmen; and did it bring them the benefits they expected? It may have done so. But that, surely, is the question we must ask ourselves.

KHONIA KHEL, " RAIDER’S," VIEWS ON THE GOVERNMENT’S " MORAL OBLIGATIONS."

Perhaps my readers may remember that the leader of the " raiders " who ambushed the column in the Shahur Defile, when seven British officers were killed and several others wounded, was said to have been a famous Jalal-Khel-Mahsud raider," Khonia Khel. It may, therefore, be of some interest to know what this famous " raider " who was well known to the writer had to say on the subject of our " moral obligation " to the tribes, as well as the reasons he gave for his having adopted the profession of " raider."

CHAPTER XII.

The Responsibility of the District and Political Officers as well as the Headmen.

IT is not my object, nor is it for me to say even if I could who is to blame for the present disturbances in Waziristan. Only those who are cognizant of all the facts are in a position to do so and to apportion the blame.

But when we blame the headmen (as we have been doing)for their inability to control their tribesmen and probably they are to blame we are, at any rate, by implication, blaming the civil authorities the Political Officers across the border, and the district authorities inside the districts. The Political Officers because they were unable to control the tribes and, if necessary, to compel the tribal headmen to carry out their primary duty of keeping order. The district authorities because, as it was in, the districts that economic and other pressure could be brought to bear on the tribes, they either did not, or could not, exert the necessary pressure.

It is, however, always easy to cast aspersions. And that is not my intention. Neither is it my wish to make destructive criticisms. But my hope is that a plain statement of facts may assist those desirous of coming to a clear understanding of what wtre the possible, if not probable, causes of our present troubles, as well as help those whose duty it is to put forward a policy which will make these tribesmen our friends. For nothing else can be of any use.

Blame the headmen and, by implication, the district and political authorities. But when you do so, in fairness to them realize the colossal difficulties and handicaps which, largely through no fault of theirs, they have been working under.

Indeed, I am convinced that " such matters as I have described might have been of much less importance had the situation on other parts of the Frontier and in other parts of India been satisfactory.

" But it was not. Grievances the Waziristan tribes may have had, but there is no getting away from the fact that they had also received certain benefits. And had Waziristan, like Baluchistan, formed a separate entity (I am not arguing that it should have), it is just possible that, despite the mistakes made, it might have weathered the storm and there might have been no " rising.*

But the tragedy of the present Waziristan " rising " is that the trouble very largely emanated from " outside.’

As far back as 1932 I wrote, in commenting on the debacle in Peshawar of 1931 : "If the present trouble spreads to Waziristan it will in no way be due to the system but to our failure to recognize with Lord Roberts that – It would be foolish to forget that these tribes are not our own flesh and blood and their loyalty is the outcome of their belief in our invincibility and of their reliance on our ‘power to defend them. "

It was, fortunately, many years later when the trouble did really spread to Waziristan, but who will say that, when it did, it was not due to the tribesmen’s belief in our invincibility having been shaken ? Sandeman’s warning was couched in much the same terms when he said,

" If we knit the Frontier tribes into our Imperial system in time of peace and make their interests our own, they will certainly not oppose us in time of war and, as long as we are ready to hold our own, we can certainly depend on them being on our side."

Yet once again they have " Opposed " us, not in time of war but in time of peace. Were Lord Roberts and Sandeman, then, wrong ? Or is the reason for their having done so due to the fact that we have, in the meanwhile, been shaking " their belief in our invincibility " and making them very doubtful whether we are " ready to hold our own " ? Is it also due to the fact that we have failed to convince them that we do look upon their interests as our own " or that they can " rely o$ our power to defend them "?

That is the question and that, I believe, is the answer. Rfir more than any of the reasons I have given, far more than any of the mistakes we may have made in Waziristan, what was really the root cause of the trouble was that the "happenings in other parts of India and on other parts of the Frontier had first of all weakened and then almost shattered the tribesmen’s belief not only in our power but also in our beneficence.

And " make an Oriental believe that you are afraid of him and he is formidable indeed."

In former times, India’s troubles had usually come from the Frontier and its Frontier troubles from across the border. But since the past twenty years a far more dangerous situation has arisen and one far more difficult to cope with. And that is that our Frontier troubles have largely been the outcome of " unrest " in India proper and the policy adopted by the authorities towards it. And so from India the poison spread to the Frontier. It first infected its nerve-centre, Peshawar, and from there its malignant growth ate its way into the districts and then, on into the Frontier tribes across the border.

While, therefore, it may not be my province to criticize what had been goyag on in other parts of India or to say whether the measures taken there had been good or bad, it is Absolutely essential to a correct understanding of the Frontier problem that the result of these happenings, first, on the Frontier at large, and then on Waziristan in particular, should be traced.

Indeed, if we*are searching for a solution of the Frontier problem; if we are seeking for some way to make these tribesmen our friends, then to ignore these things which were almost certainly the root causes of our present troubles, would be like a doctor, who, seeking for a remedy for his patient, prescribed for certain outward abrasions when what the latter was really suffering from was internal cancer. Any permanent remedy must do away with the cause. It must cut out the growth.

To a certain extent, at any rate, the Government’s admission that one of the main underlying causes of the Waziristan disturbances in addition to the tribesmen’s hopes of loot and securing rifles was " their belief that the constitutional changes in India indicated weakness on the part of the Government " goes some way to bear out this contention.

To eradicate such a belief, even if it were an unjustified one, would be absolutely essential to the success of any future Frontier policy.

How much more so must this be the case in the present instance, when who can deny it? the tribesmen have every reason and every excuse for holding such opinions ?

What effect the policy of reforms and the policy of extreme conciliation, which went with it, had on the rest of India has been dealt with by many far abler writers than myself.

Those, however, who wish to see what the results on India and indeed on other parts of the Frontier were, cannot do better than read those two very able books: " The India we Saw," by Major Cadogan; and " Imperial Policing," by Sir C. Gwynn.

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To read rest of the book, please, click here or here .

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