Time to strike

  • The pipe dream of Imran Khan that terrorists are not the enemy of Pakistan and will not attack us if we do not attack them has been buried along with the 29 innocent Muslims killed by suicide bomber in Bajaur and 13 brave Pakistani soldiers beheaded by militants in North Waziristan. How long will we allow this vicious LIE to continue? TIME TO STRIKE.

    These militants seek to establish an Islamic emirate in Afghanistan, the tribal areas and wherever else they can through force of arms. Nobody wishes a bloodbath in North Waziristan. The terrain is hostile and the enemy battle-hardened and savage. But a half-a-million strong army ought to be able to create and hold space to facilitate a dialogue. Negotiation must undoubtedly be the ultimate aim but can yield results only from a position of strength. It is often argued that North Waziristan is now home to armed zealots of many origins: Uzbeks, Chechens, Arabs and of course Afghans, many of whom have been here for over 20 years and even have families. They must be disarmed and agree to obey the law of the land. If they have no place to go, their case for a legalised status can also be considered. But first the Pakistan Army must establish its writ in lawless North Waziristan. If the army feels it’s stretched too thin now to open a new front, as it sees it, it must come clean. Perhaps then Pakistanis will better understand why US drone attacks happen and under what circumstances these might stop. Sovereignty, not slogans, is its own best guardian.