PAKISTAN: TERRORISM’S MOST DEVASTATING BLOW – ANALYSIS ( SOurce- The Eurasia Review / Institute of South Asia Studies, Author- Shahid Javed Burki)
|Image credits- Wikimedia Commons/ United States DOD)|
Source- The Eurasia Review / Institute of South Asia Studies
Author- Shahid Javed Burki
The Peshawar attack may prove to be a turning point for Pakistan. It appears that after the assault on Pakistan’s military, the nation’s most respected and powerful institution, the country may finally be ready to resolutely move against all extremist groups.The attacks continued and by 21 December, five days after the massacre, 150 terrorists had been killed by the Pakistani military. Sartaj Aziz, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s National Security Advisor, told the press that Afghanistan and Pakistan had agreed to carry out joint operations against the terrorist groups in the border areas. This was the first time the two countries had begun to work together in their campaigns against terrorism.
Among those that got divided were the Mehsuds and the Haqqanis. The former have supplied the leadership and foot-soldiers to the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) and the latter operated, often with devastating effect, against the government in Kabul and the American and NATO troops fighting in that country. Both groups aimed to undermine the established governing orders in the two countries, replacing them with what they call the “Islamic caliphate”, a system of governance that would follow what they interpreted as the tenets of Islam. The personnel belonging to the two groups freely crossed the poorly patrolled Durand Line. The governments in Islamabad and Kabul did little to remove the sanctuaries established by the two groups on either side of the border.The Durand Line cuts across a number of Pashtun tribes living in the borderland between the two countries.
One of the first actions taken by the Pakistani authorities after the Peshawar incident was to approach Kabul and ensure that the escape routes of those involved in planning and executing the attacks were blocked by the Afghan authorities.The second development is the result of the prolonged presidential contest in Afghanistan that finally resulted in the start of the Ashraf Ghani presidency, succeeding that of Hamid Karzai. Ghani, a former member of the World Bank staff, was interested in not only finding a durable solution to the problem of Islamic extremism but in setting his country on the path of sustainable economic progress. He was persuaded that he needed Pakistan’s help in both endeavors. Pakistan was the third country he visited after taking office. The first two calls were made to China and Saudi Arabia.
About the author:
*is Visiting Senior Research Fellow at the Institute of South Asian Studies (ISAS), an autonomous research institute at the National University of Singapore. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org. Opinions expressed in this paper, based on research by the author, do not necessarily reflect the views of ISAS. During a professional career spanning over half a century, Mr Burki has held a number of senior positions in Pakistan and at the World Bank. He was the Director of China Operations at the World Bank from 1987 to 1994 and the Vice President of Latin America and the Caribbean Region at the World Bank from 1994 to 1999. On leave of absence from the Bank, he was Pakistan’s Finance Minister, 1996-97.
This article was published by ISAS as ISAS Brief No. 355 – 23 December 2014 (PDF).
Original link to the article- http://www.eurasiareview.com/24122014-pakistan-terrorisms-devastating-blow-analysis/