Another suicide car bomb attack targeted security forces in DHA Karachi today. This is just the latest in the increasingly brazen attacks by Taliban militants. Soon after, Taliban spokesman Ehsanullah Ehsan called the media and vowed the attacks would continue.
Meanwhile, the Americans are growing tired of the double games being played by GHQ. It’s easy to say that the Afghan Taliban are not our enemy so we will not help the Americans to fight them, but it’s going to be hard to keep the Americans as an ally if we are giving aid to the very people who are killing their soldiers.
The American Ambassador Munter says that he has seen evidence that the government is helping the Haqqani network who is killing American soliders in Afghanistan. Of course, this support is not coming from president’s house any more than that ridiculous ad in the American media did. And the Americans know this. But what does it mean when American officials stop saying “elements in ISI” and start saying “Government of Pakistan”? It means we need to wake up.
It is an open secret that the Haqqani network is supported by the Pakistan Army and its intelligence agencies. What is interesting, though, is Ambassador Munter’s statement linking the Haqqani network to the Pakistan government. The democratically elected government is not in charge of Pakistan’s foreign or security policy. That is still controlled by GHQ. But Mr Munter’s remarks show annoyance at the government for having not been able to restrain the military from turning a blind eye to terrorist attacks in Afghanistan through its proxies. Pakistan’s strategic depth policy is out in full force given that the endgame in Afghanistan is nearing after a decade. Our security establishment’s dual policies vis-à-vis the Taliban might have been an annoyance for the US-led NATO forces in Afghanistan initially but now they have become far more serious. Various statements emanating from the coalition forces, especially US officials, point to their impatience. The US can take unilateral action whenever it wants as we saw in the case of the May 2nd raid on Osama bin Laden’s compound in Abbottabad. Pakistan should not take these warnings lightly anymore. The war in Afghanistan is far from over. It has already spilled into our borders and when the foreign troops leave, there is more danger of an escalation in the Taliban’s activities.
We are fighting a war against extremist militants, not ‘freedom fighters’. The Americans are not infidel colonisers, they are dying to defend peaceful Afghans and to prevent the type of people who attack school buses from targeting them again as they did on 9/11. They’re not trying to set up permanent colonial outposts, they’re trying to go home. They want this bloody war to end as much as we do. The only people who gain from it are the extremist militants.
Right now, the Americans are on our side, but that can change. The wise old men at GHQ might think their double game is a good hedge against American troops leaving in 2014, but at what cost? The best case scenario is that we’re left to fight militants with no support from the Americans. The worst case scenario is that the Americans decide we’re part of the problem, too. And if you think that this will be the catalyst for some war of civilisations that leads to the emergence of a new Khalifat, please wake up to reality.
If one thing has been made clear by the Arab revolutions, it is that there is no desire among the people of the Muslim world to give up sovereignty in order to live under a religious dictatorship, even if it wraps itself in the language of history. And if the drone strikes in Waziristan were not enough, the NATO support for the rebels in Libya proves that the Americans don’t have to set one foot on the ground to defend their interests.
GHQ needs to consider the advice of Daily Times.
The attacks by the Pakistan Taliban from across the border show that they have found support from the Afghan Taliban. Pakistan should stop treating Afghanistan like its colony and get real. Afghanistan is as much a sovereign country as any other. Terrorists are our common enemy and we must fight this battle for our own good.
It should also be noted that Ehsanullah Ehsan who issued the warning today is not a TTP spokesman, but a spokesman for Afghan Taliban. More proof that there is no difference.
As this war rages, we must choose what side of history do we want to be on? The side that attacks weddings, funerals, and school buses and straps bombs to children to use them as weapons? Or the side of modern democracies and international cooperation? There is not another option, splitting terrorists into ‘good Taliban’ and ‘bad Taliban’. The sooner the military stops even passive support for militant groups, the sooner the militants can be defeated and this bloody war can end. If the khakis stubbornly continue playing this double game, though, God help us all.