Afghanistan, militants and us

As US and NATO troops prepare for a complete withdrawal from Afghanistan by the end of this year, Afghans are eagerly awaiting the results of the presidential run-off vote between Abdullah Abdullah and Ashraf Ghani.  Pakistan still remains the target of numerous allegations by Afghanistan for allowing militants to use Pakistan’s soil to attack Afghanistan and support their sanctuaries in Pakistan.

A recent book by British journalist Carlota Gall, The Wrong Enemy, claims that our Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) supports the Afghan Taliban logistically and has a say in the Taliban’s military strategy. It also describes how ISI had a desk dedicated to looking after Osama Bin Laden.  While it is debatable, what is the source of her claims in that book; it is a common knowledge that Pakistan, in 2003–2004, was militarily supporting the Taliban. This may not be the case now, but some analysts believe that militants are certainly allowed to have sanctuaries in Pakistan, but they are not being militarily supported by ISI or the army as before.

Since last 40 years, Pakistani militants have been used to push our foreign policy agenda in India, Kashmir, Afghanistan and Central Asia. Our authorities always appear ambiguous or even tolerant when dealing with Islamists militants and the spread of radical ideas. 

We have more reasons to believe that this period has come to an end now and that our military and the ISI understand what a loss and negative impact this proxy war has had on the internal situation in the country. We are seeing, of course, the massive growth of Talibanisation and the impact it has had on our international image and our relations with our neighbours.

2320 hours
Friday 20 June 2014

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