Com­bat­ing the Tal­iban

Southasia - - EDITOR’S MAIL -

In your Au­gust Cover Story, ‘The Good, the Bad and the Ugly’, you have drawn at­ten­tion to the Tal­iban ques­tion that dogs the heels of the Pak­istani na­tion as well as the re­gion and im­pacts all round progress. This es­pe­cially means that Pak­istan, for one, does not fall in line with other na­tions of the re­gion on the anvil of de­vel­op­ment. It is a pity that this nu­clear armed coun­try with a ma­jor global pop­u­la­tion and one of the world’s largest stand­ing armies known for its pro­fes­sion­al­ism, has be­come hostage to a few thou­sand Tal­iban op­er­a­tives. While it is true that Pak­istan needs its army as a de­ter­rent to en­e­mies on both its eastern and western bor­ders, it must start as­sign­ing a dif­fer­ent kind of com­bat role to a por­tion of its forces to fight the Tal­iban. It is cer­tain that Pak­istan army com­man­ders have al­ready re­al­ized this and are rais­ing such a force ac­cord­ingly.

It must also be taken into ac­count that it was in the first place the Pak­istan army which had taken the ini­tia­tive to raise the Tal­iban forces at the be­hest of the Amer­i­cans in or­der to fight the Sovi­ets. Now that times have changed and the Tal­iban have nei­ther the Sovi­ets to fight against nor are they called upon to act as in­fil­tra­tors on the Kash­mir front, they have turned their guns against Pak­istan it­self. The Pak­istan armed forces must keep many steps ahead and start look­ing for ways to com­bat the Tal­iban by us­ing the same tech­niques that th­ese fight­ers use. Rather than stick­ing to meth­ods of con­ven­tional war­fare, Pak­istani com­bat­ants now need to pick up the Tal­iban tech­niques and teach the per­pe­tra­tors of ter­ror a few lessons of their own.

Muhammad Amir Is­lam­abad, Pak­istan

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