Tag Archives: Militancy

#PeaceTalks with Afghan Taliban

Afghanistan, Pakistan, United States and China are going to the table once again to put an end to the paused peace process of Afghanistan with the Afghan Taliban. Earlier the process was stopped owing to the death disclosure of the then Taliban head (emir of the faithful as they call) Mullah Omer at a time when Kabul and Islamabad was reaching to a work plan.

This time Taliban are not invited as they have already demanded direct talks with the United States instead of Afghan government (as they always gesture to the second as puppet).

Sartaj Aziz, a veteran politician of PMLN and, the Pakistan’s foreign affairs adviser to the Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, has already stated that he can’t name the factions of Taliban ready for the talks with Afghanistan (Dawn Reported).

The four point agenda would be 1) Taliban would be asked to gain their political goals via dialogues instead of insecurity 2) paving the way for direct talks with Taliban 3) confidence building and bringing Taliban to the dialogue table 4) a realistic and flexible roadmap, steps and phases, but to avoid unrealistic targets and deadlines.

No doubt this time the shape of Taliban dialogue would be changing; because they are already shown divided in different factions as gestured by Sartaj Aziz. And their killing of parties in Pakistan as well as Afghanistan is reported since they met in Murree (reported by Daily Beast) some two years ago one of their leading commanders in absence of Mullah Omer called upon the groups to stop killing leaders. It happened after some of the Quetta Shura members were killed in Quetta (In news outlet Taliban pointed their fingers on National Directorate of Security, Afghan spy agency).

The Chinese expansion in the region as one of the emerging power from the east is obvious; it’s planned its corridor net in Pakistan would be stretching to the Central Asian Countries soon using Afghanistan as its shortest way connecting it further to the Pakistani deep seaport of Gawadar. On the other hand Americans are angry over the speedy popping up of new terrorist group Islamic State (Daesh an Arabic Acronym) in Afghanistan Pakistan region. This group can derail the fourteen years old investment, military, logistics, revenue use of the International Coalition partners in NATO; where the biggest share is made by the United States. This is the reason these two nations China and US middle the dialogue between Afghanistan and the Afghan Taliban (who are reportedly stationed in their safe heavens in Pakistan).

The dialogue mantra is not new; earlier former Afghan president Hamid Karzai tried his level best; he was even named the “Taliban brother” by his opponent, for his struggle taking his “angry brothers”, as he called them in his speeches, on board. But those dialogues would always find an unknown blow sometimes by the middling Americans and almost by the disturbing attacks on NATO, Afghan security forces and the civilian from Taliban. And such event would always get a restart after a go on and go off turns in the process. Afghanistan even lost the Afghan leader Professor Burhanuddin Rabbani, a farmer Mujahideen leader and head of the Peace Council a committee created to monitor and go for dialogue with Taliban.

Afghan government, intelligentsia, spy agency reports, even the western media would name the only name “Pakistan” being the double standard ally in dialogue with the Taliban. Because it was viewed by some analysts that Pakistan wanted to give a tough time to International Community at the same time would hide its face behind the so called peace dialogue process.

Again in four point agenda it’s visible that Pakistan is not in the favor to bound Taliban for ceasing attacks across Afghanistan. As Sartaj Aziz has already talked about several Taliban groups; no doubt one group led by the Akhtar Mansoor, the nearest one to Pakistan’s spy agency Inter-Services Intelligence would be brought to the table. But his rival groups are showed not to be in control of Pakistan, who experts’ states are under the same Pakistani umbrella but only showed to the world as divided. And this would be the only excuse this time not to let the peace process find its destination.

“In side #AlQaeda and the #Taliban” by (Late) Saleem Shehzad, the #journalist

No doubt AlQaeda, Taliban, Uzbek, Chechen, Tajik and Kashmiri fighters are yet not known to many and several researchers have worked on the subject. But still enough is needy to focus them and their strategic and ideological structure for their uprisings and militancy in Asia and Middle East (now in the form of Islamic State a new organization active in Syria and Iraq).

In this regard, the research based activities of the book “Inside AlQaeda and the Taliban” (late) Saleem Shehzad has produced a very informing account on the network and structure of the said organizations. No doubt it was the research work by Shehzad that pushed Pakistan spy agencies to let him aborted in the capital city of Islamabad.

Even-though it is not taking me to be with the writer on the same page; but still endorse his in-depth account. The book explores the creation of AlQaeda, its strategies, the Yemeni and Egyptian groups and then their merger into each other and giving a new form to AlQaeda led by Osama Bin Laden and Dr. Ayman ul Zawahiri.

The book evolve around AlQaeda ideology based on Takfeer (the Muslim who become idle and tools of non-Muslim states), Khuruj (revolt against those states who are empowering the United States and its allies nations in war on Muslim world and looting their natural resources).

As the death of Osama Bin Laden took place just weeks after the said organization Saleem Shehzad was abducted and then killed and thrown near a water channel in the areas connecting to Islamabad the Pakistan capital.

Saleem explains AlQaeda as a powerful ideology based organization that is not only having its links among the Middle East Arab groups as well as the Afghan, Pakistani Taliban, Uzbek, Tajik, Kashmiri, Iranian Baloch fighters.  Saleem is a bit exaggerating the organization or he may be observing it more than its capability is the reason that most of these terror groups are not having something visible. They work in a hidden way and no doubt they are minor in number but terrorize the majority of the masses they target.

Lashkar al Zil (Shadow Army) was the strategic army made up of groups other than Arab fighters was focused as a way of success for the Arab leadership of AlQaeda. Zooming from his book the Lashkars latter named as Tehreek e Taliban Pakistan were first used to slit the throats of local system in Waziristans where the tribal chiefs were replaced by the young lot of their tribes and branches in the form of young Taliban leaders, particularly, the Mehsuds who led the said organization.

The TTP not only pursued AlQaeda ideology but applied their skills and bombed Pakistan military and government officials and foot soldiers in their fight. Though Saleem has connected the anti AlQaeda, Taliban block as Pakistan Peoples Party, Mutahida Qaumi Movement (Untied National Movement), Awami National Party (Peoples National Party). Not only political block at the same time Pakistan’s military rule in countering the stated militant wings across Federally Administered Tribal Areas in the Lion Heart (Nato) and Sher Dil Pakistan army operations.

The Afghan Taliban in the leadership of Mullah Muhammad Omer, (the then emir of the faithful) was accepted as leader by AlQaeda and the 2006 spring uprising planned by the special envoy to two Waziristans where the terror organizations were based and regrouped after the NATO attack on Taliban regime in Afghanistan in 2001. The spring uprising is stated to be the deadliest one when the AlZarkawi, the Iraq based AlQaeda leader new strategy “suicide bombing” was owned by Afghan Taliban and other groups led by AlQaeda in the South Asian region.

The shortcomings of Saleem’s writings are he has given a soft cover to Pakistan powerful spy agency ISI and its military establishment having the actual power of ruling.

Weeks after the death of Saleem Shehzad, Osama Bin Laden the AlQaeda leader was killed in Abbottabad the Garrison town miles away from the capital city of Islamabad. And then in 2013 the Taliban supremo and the then emir of the faithful died in Karachi hospital. Viewing this situation Shehzad would have stamped Pakistan the sole player in militancy around AfPak region.

Afghanistan and Pakistan spy agencies sign MoU

Memorandum of Understanding between Afghanistan and Pakistan spy agencies NDS and ISI, NDS chief Nabil says he’s not signed. The two countries are nearer on security issues with each other after the deadliest attack on a Peshawar based Army Public School that killed several children.

Whereas the current Afghan president Ashraf Ghani has showed much flexibility toward Pakistan if compared with the former Afghan presidentHamid Karzai.

Currently the Afghanistan elected leadership especially the president of Afghanistan Ashraf Ghani and the former president Hamid Karzai, his team members and the security officials, particularly the former NDS chiefAmrullah Saleh and current chief Nabil are never siding with this all easy change in Afghan policy toward Pakistan.

As far as observed from Pakistani media; the Pakistan based intelligentsia mostly biased toward Afghanistan, their country are backing the current improvement in the relations between the two countries. Because a theory of “strategic depth” and Pakistan interference in Afghanistan was thought to be ousting India and its impact on Kabul as a friend. (India has no soldier on Afghan land) Though India has played a key role in promoting Afghanistan development.

Another school of thought used to elaborate the situation that Pakistan is willing to install Taliban and get influence over Kabul more to its arch rival India. What would they think about the issue now as Afghanistan new government has given enough space to Pakistan. Even MoU between the spy agencies of the two countries.

Afghanistan: Qatar peace talks with Afghan Taliban

The media organizations focused on Afghanistan are busy reporting the Qatar based gathering of Afghan Taliban and the High Peace Council of Afghanistan.

Afghan government has formed its delegation to meet the Qatar based Afghan Taliban political secretariat. The Doha based group of Taliban leadership is well known for their diplomatic stay and office since the previous government under farmer president Hamid Karzai made several attempts taking Taliban in confidence and some time calling them “brothers”.

The Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid had earlier stated about the gathering to be a conference where views would be share. Seems that they are not bound to discuss the forth coming peace process, they are here merely sharing point of views.

Earlier sources of different media groups had released the secrets that Taliban would be handed over the power of Southern Provinces neighboring Pakistan, from where the sanctuaries of Afghan Taliban are told active.

According to some analysts Pakistan seems to have changed its attitude toward the militancy in Afghanistan and both the countries Pakistan and Afghanistan have find a safe side of dialogue; this boosted after the Tehreek e Taliban Pakistan attacked the Peshawar based Army Public School, killing some 132 children and school staff and wounding several others. The visits by Pakistan Chief of Army Staff Gen: Raheel Sharif and ISI DG to Kabul was hoped to be building a shared strategy to counter terrorism in the region. And then Afghan president Ashraf Ghani visited Pakistan, an outcry was heard from inside Afghan circles when he visited General Headquarters the Pakistan army high office near Islamabad.

After months of the peace meetings now the Afghan Interior Minister Noorul Haq Uloomi, has claimed in his recent comments to media “Our south is disturbed by our enemy and the north by friends”. In Afghanistan enemy is a term used for the militants, mostly Taliban and probably now Islamic State, yet to be taking ground. And other experts also raised fingers over Pakistan role in stopping the sanctuaries on its soil in Quetta, Peshawar and Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) well known for Quetta Shura, Haqqani Network and Hizb e Islami (Gulbadin Hekmatyar).

A new fold may come in dialogue with the Taliban, as Pakistan is said to be fully pressurizing Afghan Taliban to become part of the peace process. But the said process is a sign of concern after the Southern Commander and Kandahar Police chief Gen: Raziq told that him and other Afghan National Security Forces Commanders head are told to be the price of peace negotiation with Taliban, he further added that he’s having documents where the Afghan High Peace Council exchange sensitive information with the Taliban commanders. According to him the Afghan security officials who are die hard front line figures would be killed by the will of foreign spy agencies in the disguise of Taliban.

On the other hand Chief Executive of Afghanistan Dr. Abdullah Abdullah told a gathering nominating the Kandahar new governor that those sons of the soil who are defending motherland are laudable. And it’s never possible to exchange their lives for making peace with Taliban. If the concerns of Afghan security officials become true and the high command of the Afghan National Security Forces is killed, it would surely create a chaos in the already fragile government led by President Ashraf Ghani and Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah.

China: would need peace among Afghanistan and Pakistan for #PCEC

The controversies are heard via social media over the Pakistan China Economic Corridor plans, a potential agreement between the two countries worthy of 46 billion US dollars. According to economics, political and social sciences expert the actual route or natural route for the said plan should go through the Balochistan’s Baloch, Pashtun and then FATA areas as well as Khyber Pashtunkhwa’s DI Khan, up to Mansehra. But the current route is showed in two possible routes one through Punjab having an extra distance for contacting Gawadar to Kashghar.

As most of the Pashtun in particular and other in general are condemning the unclear stance of Punjab, the leading Pakistani province. And the oppressed nations or other than Punjab’s masses are always worried they are kept deprived and disappointed since the creation of Pakistan.

Though the stance of the federal government is yet not clear nor they have announced the permanent route to go through. The young Pashtun lot is busy on social media; mostly criticizing their nationalist parties, the Baloch are divided in two categories. One of the parliamentarian category, still keeping silence over the issue, the other is separatist minded Baloch youth lot who sees the Gawadar handover to Chinese a neo-colonial status of their rights.

In this regard, Balochistan and Khyber Pashtunkhwa provincial assemblies have clearly passed their resolutions. The Balochistan assembly went a step ahead and called the corridor being signed between Punjab and China not Pakistan and China.

Just read the news of a Pakistani leading news paper, that Chinese have pressed Pakistani authorities to be focused on peace in Afghanistan otherwise this project can’t get the desires. We know this all is part of the political and development agreements between Pakistan China and China Afghanistan. The said agreement has some 46 billion dollars worth; different energy producing projects, as well as spread of industries around the terrorism affected and longer deprived masses in Pakistan. Another analyst even called it that both United States and Chinese government are agreed to have this project equally shared in the future.

Though the Pakistan People’s Party had called a meeting of the opposition parties the previous day, and had discussed their concerns over the said mega project. Talking to a Pashto Radio Mashaal; Wasyatullah Khan told that the opposition outcry won’t result until the governments announce its intended plan.

On the other hand; Ahsan Iqbal federal minister for planning and development had raised his finger on the neighboring country India; lobbying to make the Pakistan China Economic Corridor controversial. India has remained rival both to Pakistan and China; when the two countries used the friendship. Afghan current government has also given a broader space to Pakistan; as the previous government had India. Same is happening to China, as Afghan elected president Ashraf Ghan had his first visit to China and he sees the economic and development sector a solution to Afghanistan miseries.

Would be looking forward, but as said many slips between cup and lips. But Punjab has not to ignore the reservation of the nationalities other than Punjab.

#SocialAgreementNWA2015 and using this land #FATA for sanctuaries again

The current Social Agreement of North Waziristan states clearly that the people of FATA are to be obliged to FCR, the constitution of Pakistan and the administrative authorities (Political Agent) and let the security forces erect their camps where ever they want; never keep weapons; organize a forty members group looking after the region of tribe that no anti-state (Pakistan) element takes root or regroup. The development activities, compensations, would be provided to the tribes on equal basis (not equally with the rest of Pakistan’s masses). These orders are given and signed back on stamp papers as if these poor people were the cause of terror and extremism in the region.

Pre-history is known through the remaining of several archeological sites across Afghanistan and Pashtunkhwa (the Pashtun historical land in Pakistan) where the Zartasht and Buddhist remains prove that this land was once the center of civilization when today’s developed Europe was in Dark Ages. Herodotus has focused the Afghans living in this land of harder weathers, tough mountains and deserted plains. Alexander the great explains Pashtuns seeming divided in tribes and attacking with joint efforts toward invader; where no one can stand before their retaliation. And in his letter to his mom ‘every mom give birth to an Alexander here [Afghanistan]’. It’s doesn’t mean to interpret the motherland loving Pashtuns wrongly. If we look through the pages of history; the same are words by the rest of invaders of Afghan lands. Lets come to a piece of this land and zoom it a bit in the folds of history surf.

The name of Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) is well known if we go through the three Afghan Anglo wars, the Kashmir fight with India after 14 August 1947 (Pakistan had no regular army used tribes from this land as volunteer soldiers), then the USSR invasion of Afghanistan the resistance they felt from the said region, emergence of the ‘Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan’ that was called by the then Taliban regime and the Taliban movement from 1994 to 2001, and then comes the 9/11 World Trade Center attack that changed the political scenario of the region (Pakistan & Afghanistan).

The Fata makes headlines in national and international media whenever there is a hit by US drone strike or the bombing in Afghanistan on the ISAF & Nato, Afghan forces or on this side across Peshawar, Quetta, Gilgit Baltistan, Karachi are search and tracked back to this land, because, thousands of hardliner fighters and ideologues of the Arab, Chechen, Uzbek and Punjabis were pushed back from Tora Bora and rest of Afghanistan by the international coalition forces to take shelter in FATA with an aim to have a slap on the international community’s face (though Pakistan had undertaken the role of an ally in document but it proved duplicity for fulfilling its wishes of the ‘strategic depth’). Fata especially the North Waziristan Agency, Khyber and Barha areas are hit by the ongoing Zarb e Azb operation launched on the militant hide outs (according to Army ISPR where no other media organization or reporter is allowed to visit the area) and spread to Khyber one and then Khyber two (no one has the record of peaceful masses and militant killed in the ongoing deadliest operations).

Only in Pakistan head counts shows some 70 thousand (above 60 thousand Pashtuns) masses including 5 thousand security personnel being killed after the launch of war on terror a front made of “America (Nato Allies), Afghanistan and Pakistan”. In short this war has brought up here deadliest operations from Swat to South and North Waziristan. The last ones Zarb e Azb, Khyber One and Khyber Two were launched after the Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif led government failed to progress the dialogue process with Tehreek e Taliban Pakistan after Karachi airport was attacked in the mean time.

Frontier Crimes Regulation is a black colonial law that has pushed the people of FATA to live a life of miseries; whether it was the colonial era or after the creation of Pakistan. A tribe is punished for the crime of an individual, no rule of law, the powerful or the establishment liked is supported against the poor members of tribe. Basic human rights, freedom of speech, opinion, and vote, basic needs provision (Health Education et cetra) are prohibited for almost 4 million population. The said law was only applied here to keep the British imperials rule on the sub-continent.

So a buffer zone was need of time between the Britain ruled India and the Tzarist Russia. It was a misfortune that the strategically attractive Pashtunkhwa was controlled by the Britishers after Gandamak and Durand treaties and encroachment of Afghan lands for the said purpose. That’s the reason why the Pashtun are still not aware of their basic human rights in the 21st century and are provided with a stricter and harder FCR to sign on for remaining faithful to Pakistan after being used as fuel of its strategic depth. These hardships, flees as IDPs, killing in operations, slaughtering by militants and arrest by law enforcers will go on until Pakistan remains a player in the American (super power) team. Pakistan remains hopeful to win the Ghazwa Hind and Ghazwa Khurasan (the religiously interpreted wars by Pakistani establishment doctrine). And the poor Pashtuns will blend in the blenders of so called holly wars.

Note: observing the situation it is never an end for FATA, as it is again prepared for remaining a sanctuary used for some more decades. As authorities are not sincere; they only keep these people in dark and would never remove their status of “black hole” for militants regrouping and emergence again and again.

Afghan cadets will get training in Pakistan

First group of six Afghan cadets arrive to Pakistan for a year and half training course at PMA Kakool the well known academy of the armed forces.

Janan Musazai, the Afghan ambassador in Pakistan advised the new comers to be in good relations with Pakistani training mates as well as with the ones who are from other nations.

Former Afghan President Hamid Karzai had never favored sending Afghan National Security Forces for training in Pakistan. This was the reason none of them visited Pakistan for training.

The development in relations of the two countries [Afghanistan-Pakistan] is a result of the new Afghan president Ashraf Ghani’s decision. After Pakistan Army chief Raheel Sharif’s visit to Kabul and showing interest in training Afghan National Security Forces in Pakistan.

Pakistan has always objected India’s presence in Afghanistan; every second person even from the civilian whose mentality is changed by the state controlled media will inquire ask his/her first question “Why 6 consulates of India are active across Afghanistan?” This mentality and attitude should be a cover for the longer war on Afghan soil stirred from the Pakistan based sanctuaries of the militant organizations like Afghan Taliban and Haqqani Network. That has caused deadliest attacks on Afghan Security Forces, Civic Institutions, infrastructure as well as the International Community forces who were at war with the Al-Qaeda and Afghan militants for last decade.

Pakistan and Afghanistan have a longer but bitter relations with each other, either it be the Durand Line issue, the Afghan so called Jihad (Civil war killing 3 million Afghans), the interference policy to promote Pakistan’s own strategic depth (Using Afghanistan as a base against Pakistan’s arch enemy India).

At the same time Afghanistan has been a country of interest not only for United States, NATO & ISAF allies as well as for the regional nations. And in this regard India has helped Afghanistan after the 9/11 Afghan and coalition forces war on Taliban and Al-Qaeda. Though it is clear India is not having its army on Afghan soil and never interested in doing so. The said nation has applied a friendly policy to promote development in Afghanistan that’ll be fruitful for sustainable peace in the region. Afghanistan security forces needed trainings so India has trained thousands of its cadets in the last decade, has financed several roads, schools, universities, hospitals, scholarship for thousands of Afghan students are some of the great support by the Asian brother nation India. On flip of this Pakistan had played its role in destabilizing [indirectly via Afghan militant support] and destroying every sector of life [education, health, infrastructure] during last decade.

Now Afghan President Ashraf Ghani would have changed the government policy for a friendly change toward an unfriendly Pakistan would benefit them [Afghans]. Nothing more to expect from Pakistan but at least secure Afghanistan current infrastructure and institutions from Pakistan based and trained militants. And Afghanistan this gesture will show Pakistan that both of India and Pakistan are equally considered in Afghanistan. But this won’t stop Pakistanis asking their questions on the presence of Indian consulates around Afghanistan. Nor Pakistan is in a mode to assist Afghanistan for development in a negligible size compared to India. Let’s see what happens next.

Both Aimal Faizi, the spokesman to former Afghan president Hamid Karzai and the then Afghan intelligence chief Amrullah Saleh are not seeing this a wise move. Saleh had always wanted to start a NATO and ISAF operation on the Pakistani soil because international community knew none of the Afghan militant existed in Afghanistan. They were only injected from the other side of the Durand line [Pashtun areas in Pakistan].