Together, We Can
South Asia’s cover story last month was a good effort and took a very wellbalanced approach to highlighting the diverse economic, political and social ties that the United States has enjoyed with South Asia over the years. The articles on Af-Pak strategy and American foreign policy presented some hard facts that cannot be ignored. While America and its allies have decided to wrap up the war in Afghanistan with a phased withdrawal of their troops from the country, the international community should not overlook the gravity of the situation in Afghanistan and its repercussions for Pakistan. We need to realize and accept that this war on terror does not end with Osama bin Laden’s death. The Taliban may have been hibernating but do not seem to be backing off anytime soon. Before making any peace deals with them, our leaders need to make sure that the safety of the Afghans remains intact and that the Taliban do not misuse their power. Also, America needs to realize that despite the fact that Afghanistan has a pivotal status in its South Asian strategy, no substantial progress can be made on this war on terror without Pakistan’s support. As pointed out by your writers, a durable peace in Afghanistan is only possible when all major South Asian players, including India, are taken into confidence on the question of Afghan reconstruction.
Obaidullah Niazi, Peshawar, Pakistan