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Pak Tea House » Terrorism » Playing all sides of the fence

Playing all sides of the fence

By Saad Hafiz:

There is nothing new in the
pattern of condemnations and wake up calls after the recent assassination of Bashir Bilour by the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP). Similar views were expressed after the murders of Benazir Bhutto, Salmaan Taseer and other notable terrorism victims. A consensus on a concerted strategy to combat the existential threat posed by terrorism continues to elude the country despite the thousands of military and civilian casualties in the war on terror.

The military and the politicians prevaricate comfortably in passing the buck on to the other. The other key social influencers — the clergy, the intelligentsia and the media — seem pleased in obfuscating the terrorism issue. The TTP’s brazen confidence grows as they casually accept responsibility for their various acts of murder and mayhem. Their immediate objective is to consolidate a permanent footprint in FATA, which will bring them a step closer to their main objective of an Islamic emirate in a nuclear-armed Pakistan.

Few so-called national leaders have the gumption to make a categorical statement about terrorism as the one made by the grieving Ghulam Ahmed Bilour. Bilour said, “There stands no distinction between good or bad Taliban. There is nothing like good or bad about Taliban. They are terrorists who challenge the writ of the government. They are not ready to accept our constitution and even our country. They have to mend their ways. And those who mend their ways and pledge allegiance to the state can be reconciled but the rest have to be taken out. That is the only solution to terrorism.” Bilour makes a good case for eliminating terrorism rather than containing it, as Pakistan has been attempting to do so far.

The answer to the ‘soft’ corner for militancy in Pakistan may lie in the complex contemporary relationship between these terrorist groups and the state, as well as between religious and political organisations. It cannot be denied that there are varying levels of support for militancy within both the Pakistani public and the military and intelligence agencies. The TTP can easily mobilise the religious constituency in the country around their homespun Islamic jihadi message. Many Pakistanis glorify the TTP as gallant ‘resistance fighters’ and not as the murdering terrorists they have proved to be.

The other factor is that the government battles former proxies who have turned their guns — and suicide vests — on the Pakistani state and their former patrons. Pakistan may have publicly abandoned militancy as a tool of foreign policy but its strategic residue remains firmly in place. A security establishment enamoured with the use of irregular troops since 1948 may not want to alienate or rule out the use of these troops if conditions require it in the future. No lessons seem to have been learnt from the backing of militants in Afghanistan and Kashmir in the 1980s and 1990s, as past policies have boomeranged with devastating effect. The country faces spreading radicalisation, accelerated by easy availability of weapons and a plethora of militant organisations, which have seeped into the country’s urban core.

The other sensitive ideological and ethnic factors at play that contribute to Pakistan’s ambivalent posture toward the fight against terrorism are often the least discussed. Firstly, Pakistan’s descent into an ideological Islamic state makes it a natural and thriving sanctuary for ideological non-state actors like the TTP and others of their ilk. Secondly, Pakistan, which is controlled by an ethnic Punjabi-Pathan oligarchy, is reluctant to wholeheartedly turn its guns on fellow Punjabis and Pathans. No such compulsion held back the ease with which overwhelming state firepower was turned on other ethnicities like the Bengalis and Baloch for far lesser ‘offences’.

As a worst-case scenario, the international community could abandon the optimism that Pakistan can or will change course and should prepare for increasing Islamist violence in the region and beyond. Violent Islamists with a variety of domestic, Afghan, Kashmiri, and millenarian agendas will continue to undermine the Pakistani state, endanger its citizens, and threaten its neighbours. The best outcome, which is looking increasingly unlikely, is that Pakistan will find the collective will to defeat the forces of extremism and to direct its resources toward pressing domestic issues such as education, rule of law, poverty, and population growth. The US is profoundly affected by Pakistan’s turmoil. First, and most obviously, it is now even more completely reliant on the cooperation of a few key security elites in Islamabad in containing al Qaeda and the Taliban. Second, the limited influence that the US enjoys in Pakistan could encourage voices in the United States calling for the introduction of special forces and airpower into Pakistan’s northwest to destroy terrorist safe havens. The unimaginable consequences of a US-Pakistan military confrontation will likely be a huge setback in the global war on terror.

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72 Responses to "Playing all sides of the fence"

  1. Milestogo United States Safari iPhone says:

    Taliban as a minority should be protected and given a homeland to freely practice Islam.

  2. jamai United States Internet Explorer Windows says:

    Well, the first point to be admired is the admission that Paki State security was definitely behind the Kashmir Militancy. So the Indians were right after all.

    Cancer is a dangerous thing. Either you apply chemo (drones) or you irradicate it either by amputation or by radiation (special forces, US -PAK matches).

    Pakiland today is a basket case, with very few elites who recognize this fact.

    It is now the local goonda with a big gun (read nukes) acquired from its friends to the north.This goonda will definitely terrorize its territory but occasional flex his muscles to venture out and threaten the neighborhood.

    The question is is playing cricket going to contain this behavioral crap.

    Me thinks radical treatment is required.

    Saad Sahib you are whistling into the wind – no one can hear you!!!

  3. Rex Minor Germany Google Chrome Windows says:

    MTG,

    The minority Talibans are the most lethal force in the world today and are the only one to use the techniques formerly deployed by Romans, Teutons, the vikings and the arabs as well as ottomans and the french under Napolean to mention some.

    Challenge, dare and conquer! Simple, compact and you have it. No army in the world today matches this and therefore are not able to conquer and hold others territory. The alternative is to build walls in place of old fashioned British cantonments, around your land and then sit tight with Patriot missile batteries and once in a while send special forces in so called enemy territory, cause damage and return to base…..Or use Drones if the enemy is situated at a distant place.

    Israel, Turkey and now the USA are embarked on this strategy. Pakistan military has the choice but for heavens sake do not start a Deja vu!!! Every now and then shooting across the kashmir or Afghan border or use of long range artillery pieces. This will not do the job. The talibans plan to cut off Peshawar from the rest of Pakistan, Myra Macdonald has posted a very good article on Reuters Blog.

    Rex Minor

  4. Rex Minor Germany Google Chrome Windows says:

    PS

    Speed is the main igredient for the ancient techniques.

  5. AKB United States Opera Windows says:

    Yes, The Taliban’s should be given a homeland in all the continents of the word, commencing from the subcontinent of India..MTG is very right,
    when he pukes that ”Milestogo says:
    January 8, 2013 at 10:22 pm

    Taliban as a minority should be protected and given a homeland to freely practice Islam.””

  6. MilesToGo United States Safari Mac OS says:

    Not only Taliban, Shias and Ahmedis must also be given homeland, so that they may practice Islam freely…

  7. yazid United States Mozilla Firefox Unknow Os says:

    balochs should be given power supply,gas and free land Mtg?……

  8. MilesToGo United States Safari Mac OS says:

    All land belongs to Allah.

  9. Rex Minor Germany Google Chrome Windows says:

    AKB,
    Drona powerful campaign has done wonders and the collective energy of subcontinent muslims is now resulting in muslims taking over the leadership of India and talibanising the entire region. Dr Qadri should now reset the route of million strong peaceful march towards India.

    Rex Minor

  10. yazid United States Mozilla Firefox Unknow Os says:

    Allah is responsible for everything.even the killings of shias by sunnis

  11. Gautama United Arab Emirates Internet Explorer Windows says:

    “” Drona powerful campaign has done wonders and the collective energy of subcontinent muslims is now resulting in muslims taking over the leadership of India and talibanising the entire region. Dr Qadri should now reset the route of million strong peaceful march towards India.

    Rex Minor”‘

    Is this man, Rex for real ?

  12. Maggu India Safari iPad says:

    Gautama, why doesn’t he sound real to you?

  13. tajender United Arab Emirates Internet Explorer Windows says:

    Drona powerful campaign has done wonders and the collective energy

    drona is on wrong side.though i support his attack on rss.qadri is zoinist agent.pak indian democratic system has many weakneses but both the systems have self correcting mechenism.his complaints are right but solution lies in survival of democracy.rex dont understand the politics of our continent.

  14. Rex Minor Germany Google Chrome Windows says:

    Tajender,

    Yes, you are perfectly correct, I am not a politician and do not understand the politics of your continent or for that matter the politics of any continent. Freedom and Democracy did not come from east or west, but from the divine scriptures brought democracy as it brought philosophy of sciences. Freedom and democracy at times has been denied in certain parts of the world by humans for political gais over others. I am ineed very sensitive to cosmic powers and the energy which comes from human organism, which at times is scattered unnecessarily and at times very scary, but when in unity can move cosmic powers with them. I have studied what Drona was writing about, most I did not follow particulary his terminologies about certain organisations but now what is happening among Indian leaders is exactly what I believe Drona was asking for, or was he not? Let Drona tell us if the developments in Indian politics are for the good or ufavourable for the benefits of the less previlaged flunkies? Democracy equals peoples power and not that of individuals. I

    Rex Minor

  15. Rex Minor Germany Google Chrome Windows says:

    Yazid,

    Allah has given the most valuable organism to humans includig the server BRAIN. Those who deliberately stand in the way of a bullet must not blame either the bullet or the one who fired it. We travel on motorways at high speed every day and yet are safe in our homes in the evening, whereas there are others who do not return safely and loose their lives in accidents mostly on account of others mistakes and not their own one. If you can spend some time to examine this reality and once you understand it then you have come of age and will not blame the creator of the universe and cosmic powers for what we are witnessing every day.

    Rex Minor

  16. jamai United States Internet Explorer Windows says:

    Yes,

    Rex seems to have flushed it away some time back!!!

  17. jamai United States Internet Explorer Windows says:

    Saad Sahib,

    Since no one else is sticking to the board, I thought I will carry the discussion forward. The latest cricket match on the LOC seems to be very interesting timing wise, wouldnt you agree.

    Elections are coming to Pakiland and US is already withdrawing. Its time for another glue (read enemy) to hold this basket together.

    I have always believed that the politics of Pakiland are always played out on the backs of Indians. By Indians I always mean non-muslim indians bcos for Pakis, a indina muslim is actually a misguided Paki. In other words, though Pakis separated physcially, they have yet to throw off the mental burdens they still carry with them.

    What do you think?

  18. saad Cayman Islands Google Chrome Windows says:

    Jamai sb,

    I do not mind if nobody is listening because I have the time to whistle in the wind as you said!

    I think that both Pakistan and India have used each other as bogeys in the past. Pakistan more so in recent times as its economy, politics and society have deteriorated and India less so because of its legitimate new found confidence. The LOC thing does not seem serious and will happen periodically and the cricket which I enjoy hopefully will happen more often!

    I also do not think that either Pakistan or India have fully shaken of the burdens of colonialism, the aggressive mentality of the few haves and the inferiority and helplessness felt by the many have nots and our religious and regional biases.

    But then what do I really know!

  19. jamai United States Internet Explorer Windows says:

    Saad sb,

    quite true. Colonialism has taken on another form – feudalism. Yes it exists even in India and is much more widespread than one is led to believe. Perhaps more subtle than in Pakiland but everywhere.

    But these “cricket” matches sometimes can get out of hand and inflame passions. Right or wrong do not mean anything. Emotion is always the all covering shroud that masks even good ones.

  20. Vijay Goel India Internet Explorer Windows says:

    Saad Sb and Jamai Sb I agree with yr conclusions but am hopeful that the Nirbaya case may wake the Indian women and realise that it is about time they busted the Male ego the subcontinent may see some pleasant times. The Cricket fortunately this time did not lead to any inflamed passions one becacause India was busy with Nirbhaya and and second because Pakistan was so much better that there was no room for us to do any chest beating.We have travelled too far on a foolish road and maybe women coming in decision making provide a different paradime.

  21. kaalchakra United States Safari  Android 4.0.4 LG-MS770 Build/IMM76I says:

    Guru Goel ji. Jamai Saab, and SaadBhai
    IMHO. Those were the most inane and useless comments. Can we not have a rule that all comments be irrelevant to the topic at hand and be interesting?

  22. jamai United States Internet Explorer Windows says:

    Kaal,

    I guess you prefer that Saad and I should have a communal riot correct?

    I guess we are bit to old to fight and will leave it for you young ones.

  23. Rex Minor Germany Google Chrome Windows says:

    MTG,
    Now you got it! Kuffar mostly comes from people who were born in a muslim family but are infidels! Tahir Gora is one of many.

    Rex Minor

  24. drona kaa pota United Arab Emirates Internet Explorer Windows says:

    mtg,

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rJiohcg-gKo

    after listening this u will be convince that kuffar has bad future.

  25. Milestogo United States Safari iPhone says:

    Tahir gora is new fatah. They are the future of Islam.

  26. Milestogo United States Safari iPhone says:

    They are cleansing Islam of kuffar practices.

  27. drona kaa pota United Arab Emirates Internet Explorer Windows says:

    mtg,

    Corruption dents India’s global image, says Prime Minister

    “Holy Hindustan”, land of spiritualism, is stinking with corruption

    : Brahminical rulers, like their Jewish cousins, are experts in
    propaganda which made the gullibles in the West to believe that India is
    the “land soaked in spiritualism”, that the people are so god-fearing
    that they do not kill even an ant. Their biggest gas balloon is Gandhi
    whose “saintly appearance” deceived the whole world.
    Such a “great land of spiritualism”, with 330 million gods, is
    buried under mountains of corruption and destroying every wing of the
    society. Its very pillars of “Hindu spiritualism” are shielding and
    defending the corrupt rascals

  28. kaalchakra United States Safari  Android 4.0.4 LG-MS770 Build/IMM76I says:

    Jamai Baba, please don’t have riots or carry out murders whether you are young or old. If you are blessed with grey hair, by. all means. flaunt them to impress prepubescent teens. Just don’t use them as substitutes for active grey cells. Best.

  29. Milestogo United States Safari iPhone says:

    Kuffar will destroy itself. It is a divine fact therefore expected. One can stop what Allah has ordered.

  30. saad Canada Internet Explorer Windows says:

    Kaal:

    “In all matters of opinion, our adversaries are insane.”
    Oscar Wilde.

    ‘Insane’ can be substituted by ‘inane’and ‘useless’!

  31. tajender United Arab Emirates Internet Explorer Windows says:

    MTG,KAAL

    Corruption dents India’s global image, says Prime Minister

    “Holy Hindustan”, land of spiritualism, is stinking with corruption

    : Brahminical rulers, like their Jewish cousins, are experts in
    propaganda which made the gullibles in the West to believe that India is
    the “land soaked in spiritualism”, that the people are so god-fearing
    that they do not kill even an ant. Their biggest gas balloon is Gandhi
    whose “saintly appearance” deceived the whole world.
    Such a “great land of spiritualism”, with 330 million gods, is
    buried under mountains of corruption and destroying every wing of the
    society. Its very pillars of “Hindu spiritualism” are shielding and
    defending the corrupt rascals

  32. kaalchakra United States Mozilla Firefox Ubuntu Linux says:

    Saad bhai, have we fallen so low as to quote a certified homosexual to each other?

    —————

    tajender bro, Jews and brahmins are the worst, but did you apologize to your Hindu Bengali neighbors for telling everyone that the wives, sisters, and daughters of your Hindu neighbors in Calcutta are sluts with lose sexual character? :(

    Brother, unlike Jews, Brahmins, and all other non-Muslims you have no excuse for misleading others! It makes everything else you or any other Muslim writes highly suspicious. Both and you drone need to return to honesty and Islam, if not for yourselves, at least for Islam.

  33. yazid United States Mozilla Firefox Windows says:

    Followers of Allah (Men) are allowed to hold sophisticated Kalashnikov (21st century)…….

    Followers of Allah (Men) are allowed to be in Burqa and beheaded as per the 7th century diktat.

  34. yazid United States Mozilla Firefox Windows says:

    the second sentence was for women

  35. Mohan United Arab Emirates Safari iPad says:

    Kaal,

    Though I don’t believe that it will work, but I sincerely appreciate your efforts. Good luck to you.

  36. Rex Minor Germany Google Chrome Windows says:

    Kaal,

    What is the difference between Bharat and India? And what does this mean when a young Indian woman taking part in BBC program of “have your say” on gang rapes, says that they are caught between Bharat and India? Listening to Indian women woes about their experiences on bus rides in past years when neither the culprits or the men travellers or the police comes to their aid when they are mishandled by rogue elements in broad daylight.

    Rex Minor

  37. yazid United States Mozilla Firefox Windows says:

    Allah has divided his followers to hanafis, wahabis, sunnis, ahmediyas, sunnis, syeds, arzals, pathans, deobandis, barelvis and has given right to allege the other group to be kufar…..

  38. yazid United States Mozilla Firefox Windows says:

    I missed Shias and Ismalis

  39. yazid United States Mozilla Firefox Windows says:

    Followers of Allah (Men) are allowed to hold sophisticated Kalashnikov (21st century)…….

    Followers of Allah (women) are allowed to be in Burqa and beheaded as per the 7th century diktat.

  40. Thomas United States Mozilla Firefox Mac OS says:

    For: Saad……

    “I also do not think that either Pakistan or India have fully shaken of the burdens of colonialism, the aggressive mentality of the few haves and the inferiority and helplessness felt by the many have nots and our religious and regional biases.

    They sent the DRONES for you Saad. And they take those who resist… the colonial embrace of Raymond Davis and their superior bribes for you to offer the lives of your own, even CHILDREN to the (colonial oil gas) drone god of murderous corruption at the HIGHEST offices… What is worse than selling your children to their god of death….?????

  41. tajender United Arab Emirates Internet Explorer Windows says:

    kaal says,

    tajender bro, Jews and brahmins are the worst, but did you apologize to your Hindu Bengali neighbors for telling everyone that the wives, sisters, and daughters of your Hindu neighbors in Calcutta are sluts with lose sexual character?

    I NEVER ANYTHING LIKE THIS.bengalees(high caste)are rascist and supermascist.that is why from vivekanand to mn roy apealed the victims of brhmnsts to convert to islam.

  42. kaalchakra United States Google Chrome Windows says:

    Rex

    In popular press, India represents people supposedly ‘on the move’, people who are joining the so-called ‘new economy’, who are benefiting from opening of markets, city-dwellers, the English speakers, so forth. Bharat is the traditional ‘India’, of villages, of small towns and native tongue speakers.

    Rex, my personal belief is that morals and values have ZERO RELATIONSHIP to whether one knows English or not, whether one works in a farm or in a call center. ALL of India is doomed because they all lack morals – whether they call themselves Indians or Bharatis. Even ‘educated’ people hold on to the myths of Hinduism. That is why tajender and drone are completely wrong when it comes to analyzing social problems of India (although they are on the mark about what tajender described as the circus of Hindu gods). The social mess (compared to Pakistan, say) is not because of just brahmins. The entire Indic system is rotten -at least from the Islamic perspective, and lacks any real foundations. Were it not so, brahmins won’t have the power they supposedly do. In reality, brahmins don’t have as much power as they are portrayed to. Power is much more widely distributed. But it doesn’t help, since they are ALL bad.

    —————–

    Mohan

    I have great faith in the powers of Islam, if not faith in the traditional sense. We can all be certain that both tajender and drone will raise themselves above the levels of brahmins and jews. If too they behave like brahmins and jews – and mislead people – it will be a great tragedy for them. Islam does not teach deliberately lying about others, or spreading false harmful information about them or about one’s neighbors, their daughters, wives, and sisters. Allah has the strongest punishment in store for such creatures.

  43. tajender United Arab Emirates Internet Explorer Windows says:

    tajender bro, Jews and brahmins are the worst, but did you apologize to your Hindu Bengali neighbors for telling everyone that the wives, sisters, and daughters of your Hindu neighbors in Calcutta are sluts with lose sexual character?

    KAAL…..I NEVER said ANYTHING LIKE THIS.MAY BE THIS IS YOUR IDEA THAT WHY U REPEAT IT AGAIN AND AGAIN.BRHMNSM HAS ENSLAVED INDIA SO FIGHT AGAINST THEM IS WAR OF LIBERATION.

  44. Rex Minor Germany Google Chrome Windows says:

    Kaal,

    Many thanks for your opinion. Let me rephrase the question so that a non Indian can follow what the young married lady with two boys of her own was trying to convey.

    Her helpness was contained in the words,” the conflict between Bharat and India is placing pressure on us, and I am being subjected to more rules and controls from my husband and two boys, and had even difficulty coming to this BBC gathering. I can not take any more nor shall I be able to defend myself against men what is being suggested now! End of the statement.

    The question therefore is that who institutionaly is responsible for the outrage against Indian women, Bharat or India?

    Rex Minor

  45. Rex Minor Germany Google Chrome Windows says:

    Kaal,

    The teaching of Islam as well as other Ibrahimic religions are for the benefit of the humanity, and in no way gives advantage to the Creator.

    The one who tells lies to deceive others is either sick or likely to get a fatal cancer desease. There are no clinical studies and therefore no statistics yet, but many notable cases are in front of us.

    So my conclusions are to follow the scriptures and stay healthy with a quality life style.

    Rex Minor

  46. kaalchakra United States Google Chrome Windows says:

    Rex, agreed absolutely. Abrahamic religions – Islam in particular, which is both the source and the destination of the divinely rooted, stable human morality – give us clear guidelines. This is their singular advantage. And this, ultimately, is also what enables Islamic societies to avoid the morass, the pitfalls, and the confusion of places like India. In the final analysis, this divinely inspired advantage exists and must exist at the level of individuals. Barring special sickness, a Muslim is, and IMHO, must constantly strive to be, a better person in every way than a Brahmin.

    Unless we do so, explicitly and consciously, in Allah’s eyes, I fear, we might be little more than those who insulted His special grace, wasted our gifts, and turned ourselves into munafiqs.

    You appear to be a very competent man of medicine. So I have no hesitation in accepting your assertion that such people are very likely to get cancer.

  47. Rex Minor Germany Google Chrome Windows says:

    Thomas,
    What is sad abut the colonial past of India and Pakistan is that unlike Africa and or even the latino countries of south America, the Indian sub-continent has lived several civilisations before its becoming a colony of the British Empire. The chinese have come out of it restoring their own civilisation history in the 21st century, but people of India and Pakistan are running over to the English speaking countries like headless chickens having been enslaved in occupiers culture, to set worth their learning in their institutions and causing self destructions with the neo-con policy and thinking of the USA based on their imperial past.

    How does one influence people like the author who means well and wants to reach his readers in the improvished land but does not accept the opinion of the indepenents unless they are sprinkled with the terminologies of the few Gurus which emanate from the USA and supported by the massive funds which the USA administration invests?

    Rex Minor

  48. Rex Minor Germany Google Chrome Windows says:

    Kaal,

    A muslim does not need to strive to be better than a Brahman or any one else. He needs to be just a muslim for himself, the family and the community he lives in. The decision as to who is good or less good does not rest with him.

    Rex Minor

  49. kaalchakra United States Google Chrome Windows says:

    Rex, true. IMO, a rightly guided person, who adheres to those right guidelines, will be ‘better’ than a person who simply is not blessed with those guidelines, or chooses not to adhere to them for all kinds of reasons.

    Those quotes around ‘better’ imply that we are speaking from the pov of specific guidelines. A brahmin probably thinks he is a ‘better’ person too!

    But your deeper point is absolutely valid. Faith and adherence to Islam in being a Muslim for oneself (and in a larger framework, for Allah) are enough.

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