Terrorism boomerangs on Pakistan
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Issue Net Edition | Date : 30 Jul , 2022

In its editorial captioned ‘Hotbed of Militancy’, the leading English daily of Pakistan Dawn of 25 July has opened a Pandora’s Box of militancy in Afghanistan. It warns Pakistan of the consequences of combined terrorist activities of Al Qaeda, ISIS and local known terrorist groups like the Haqqani network under the supervision of TTP.

The apprehensions raised by the editorial about the security of Pakistan are real and cannot be repudiated. If it is true that these terrorist organizations are active and would be operating under the supervision of TTP, then Pakistani rulers have much to worry about. The TTP is reported to have anything between seven to ten thousand fully armed mujahedeen in its rank and file which is a major threat. The agenda of the TTP, which its leaders have reiterated very often, comprises two prominent objectives. The first is to destroy the Pakistan army, or to be precise, Pakistan senior army officers, whom the TTP accuse of singing to the tune of the Pentagon. The second is to promulgate Sharia Law and do away with all other legal codes in practice today.

This agenda of TTP and the terrorist segment that it guides are fully compatible with the philosophy of the Afghan Taliban. The Afghan Taliban’s leadership has indeed said that the Taliban would not allow their land to be used against any other country. The question is that when the Taliban have and are enforcing the Sharia Law and have the Courts that support their action, how it can disallow the diehards of terrorist organizations of Al Qaeda, ISIS and TTP to suspend their mission?

This can be a grievous situation for the Pakistan army because in its text books, challenges like these have to be met by the use of military power. It may be so, but the question is that after more than year-long operations against the armed uprisings in Waziristan, the Pakistan army have not achievedfinal victory even after implementing the Zarb-e azaboperation project in which nearly 70,000 armed or unarmed people of Waziristan sacrificed their lives. Even after fighting of this magnitude, the Pakistan army has rushed to the TTP suing for an agreed settlement of the issue.

Despite several rounds of talks, nothing concrete has emerged. At the same time, the TTP has hardened its attitude on the crucial question of the Durand Line which the Pukhtoons on both sides of the frontier have declined to accept.  Pakistan air force recently pounded two places in north-east Afghanistan namely Khost and Kunduz. The Taliban leadership quipped that the Pakistan government’s activities on the Afghan – Pak border are threatening. It could mean a war which will wash away all that we have achieved, is invited by neighbouring Pakistan and we shall respond.

No doubt, it is dawning on Washington that the two-decade-old war that it fought in Afghanistan with the sole purpose of giving no quarter to the terrorists and radicals in the regionwas futile, and is slipping back to the same state as twenty years ago thereby converting Washington’s fighting that consumed nearly four thousand soldiers of the American forces besides trillions of dollars.

This is how an unassuming reader may like to interpret the aforementioned editorial of the Dawn at the beginning of this article. Curiously, while the author has opened the Pandora Box of militancy in Afghanistan and PK, he has chosen to be completely silent on the vast terrorist networks of the Pakistan-based terrorists operating in the adjoining region of the Indian part of Jammu and Kashmir. He does not speak of Lashkar-e-Taiyyaba and Jaish-e-Muhammad which have publicly announced Kashmir Jihad as their goal and are recruiting the youth to be sacrificed in fighting the Indian security forces. It does not speak a word about Lashkar-e-Jhangvi which is openly running the agenda of wiping out the Shia of Pakistan from existence. the article does not speak a word about Labbek-e-Ya Rasul Allah, which has taken up the assignment of enforcing the Gustakh-i-Rasool or Blasphemy law by framing the Christians and others. It has not a word for the programme of Khadim Husain Rizvi’s two slogans of labbek ya rasul Allah  and” gustakh-e rasul ki ek hi saza/ sar tan se  juda sar tan se juda.”

The question is whether Pakistan is actually under the threat of the terrorists or whether it is only crying wolf? If we recollect the history of the rise and proliferation of terrorists on Pakistan soil and the patronage that the terrorist organizations got from the army and the state, we will conclude that Pakistan’s present cry of terrorist danger is fake and phoney. Was not Osama found hiding in a house just adjacent to the GHQ and found dead? Did not Imran Khan say in the Pakistani Parliament that Osama was their leader? Did not the Pakistani terrorists fighting in Kashmir Valley unfurl the black flag of ISIS when Kashmiri youth were paid to pelt stones? Is not the Jaish chief  Molavi Azhar hiding in Afghanistan as reported by many parliamentarians in Pakistan? Did not the then ISI chief Faiz Hameed make a sudden trip to  Kabul to pacify the warring rival leaders, Mulla Baradar and Sirraju’d Din Haqqani and manage to givethe latter the portfolio of Interior Ministry as he desired?  These facts of history show that there is a deep understanding between the Pakistani proxies and the terrorist organizations functioning in the entire region of Pakistan, PK and Afghanistan.

Pakistan is taking recourse to the Islamic concept of Taqiyyah means hiding or telling a lie. It said that Hafiz Saeed was given 31 years of jail imprisonment for running a terrorist organization. She is also spreading the canard that Hafiz Saeed, the chief of Lashkar is missing from Pakistan. These are only antics known to knowledgeable persons for Pakistan to be removed from the FATF list. Its inclusion in the grey list is hurting her  because with that categorization no country or lending organization will extend her any loan of financial aid at a time when her economy is sinking. The raising of the bogey of the terrorist threat is part of the trickery of misleading FATF and donor agencies the world over.

Day in and day out, Pakistani media enumerates various reasons for its sinking economy. There are unending mutual accusations and fault finding. Even a former Prime Minister is banned from entering Pakistan because of a litany of allegations of fund appropriation against him. The luxurious lifestyle of Pakistani military commanders in Pakistan or the US and other western countries is also given as one of the reasons for the financial crunch. But the real fact of what has decimated Pakistan’s economy and depleted her foreign currency reserves is never told either by the political leaders or the media. They know that if they tell the truth it will explode the bottom of their Kashmir falsehood. Pakistan has become bankrupt because maximum funds are diverted to the army in the name of Kashmir jihad, and most of these funds go to the pockets of the Army Generals or big contractors and companies that share the loot with the generals. This is one of the truths unveiled by dissident POJK leadership whose voice is muzzled by all governments that wield power in Islamabad and then dictate terms to the POJK colony.

In the final analysis, a state that has declared terrorism as its state policy in dealing with Kashmir or Afghan affairs is bound to become a victim of its treachery.

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The views expressed are of the author and do not necessarily represent the opinions or policies of the Indian Defence Review.

About the Author

KN Pandita

Former Director of the Centre of Central Asian Studies, Kashmir University.

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