By Farman Nawaz (Unpublished article)
In Pakistan people can’t set apart rumors and realities. Still a lot of mysteries are undisclosed. For a very long time people were confused that whether Pakistan army is sincere in war against terror or it is just misleading the international community to get maximum funds. In fact the policy of army was compelling the people to thick like this. In different areas army started operations and local community supported Pakistan army but all of a sudden the operations were stopped and agreements were signed with Taliban. The local people suffered a lot because of the mysterious policy of army. Later on those people were targeted by Taliban and were killed brutally. Afzal Khan Lala has expressed his concerns several times about this.
In Swat an agreement was signed with Sufi Muhammad and indirectly with Taliban. The government announced that “Shariat” was the demand of the local community. All spheres of the society praised this act of the government. Because it was the last hope of bringing peace to Swat. But soon Sufi Muhammad issued some controversial statements about democracy, parliament and judiciary. Now the same Sufi Muhammad, who was a moment ago being presented as a popular moderate leader, was condemned and peace agreement was put on a side. Now the person, who was demanding “Sharia” on behalf of public, was arrested and surprisingly the same public is silent about their demand of “Sharia”. How can people of such locality that caste their votes in favor of secular party, demand a strict religious law? This put a question mark on the policies of political government and the army.
Few months back an army operation was launched in FR Bannu and the areas was severely targeted by artillery. But when IDP’s started to come to the adjacent areas for shelter so they told the local people and media that Taliban are not hit and they are still strong. But again a very rational question was asked by the locals that if shells are not hitting your homes and the hideouts of Taliban so why you are here in search of shelter. This question was not properly answered and people thought that it may be propaganda to defame Pakistan army.
My point is that still people have doubts about the army policy regarding Taliban. But we will have to confess one fact that South Waziristan and Swat operations are not a myth. Because in response Taliban has targeted our cities by suicide and gorilla attacks and remote control bombs. It shows that Taliban are under attack and they are using pressure tactics to prevent army from entering their strong holds where Taliban had a free hand to train their men. We must realize now that army is really chasing these Taliban and trying its best to capture the nurseries of Taliban.
But still confusion is there because some segments of analysts and politicians propagate the concept that it is not our war and these suicides attacks are designed by foreign agencies. They draw attention of the people to some American agencies like Black Water. But again their false claims are dashed to ground when Taliban take responsibility of these attacks.
The concept of Afghan Taliban and Pakistani Taliban is also a confusing people. Some people support Afghani Taliban because of their Jihad against America. But if we take Afghani Taliban as standard so we will have to accept their statements as true about Pakistani Taliban. Recently Afghani Taliban condemned and turned their back on Pakistani Taliban for their attacks on innocent civilians and Pakistani armed forces. It shows that Pakistani Taliban are responsible for these terrorist attacks.
We are also confused about the solution of Afghanistan problem. Suppose if Americans exit so what is our criteria to solve the problem. Whether Taliban will cooperate for peaceful solution or they will again start a new civil war. In the past civil war had brought destruction to Afghanistan. If some one argue that Taliban will negotiate with other power centers so it must be very clear in our minds that Taliban don’t have any previous good record of negotiations. They always acted upon the policy of violence to settle the issues. After 9/11 it was also the attitude and stance of Taliban that paved way for American interference in Afghanistan.
Do we remember what we demanded six decades back? Let me take you back to jog your memory. We asked the Britishers that before exit from India they must resolve the Hindu Muslim controversy because once the strong controlling hand of Britishers is not there so Hindus will usurp our rights.
Now again if America is not there in Afghanistan so the regional powers will not be able to resolve this issue. We have experienced this after Russian retreat that no one was there to get to the bottom of this issue. For almost one decade Afghanis fought with each other to gain the power. Now regional powers must work together as well as force America to solve the issue first and then exit. American presence may not be liked by the regional powers but it’s a reality that all regional powers have given a free hand to America to interfere in Afghanistan. Now the time has come to get this issue resolved according to the wishes of regional powers as well as Afghanis. Because we are paying a very high price for our Afghan, Taliban and Jihad policy.