Posted on 5 months ago
But who is he kidding? Are the Taliban mere novices, just green horns, quite ignorant of warfare, with no knowledge of military strategy, planning or execution of actions? Aren't they war veterans and war-hardened fighters, whom the combined American and NATO military might has spectacularly failed even to curb, what to speak of crushing them in an 11-year-long massive campaign? Instead, by every independent account they are now more resurgent and lethal. And it is not the hit-and-run actions they have been carrying out. More often than not, they have been penetrating the highly-secured bases of the occupying and their allied Afghan forces and fighting pitched battles with the defenders. Are those attacks any lesser professionally planned and executed?
Instead of seeking out the scapegoats and whipping boys, when indeed will Karzai admit to some home truths and be well off? The failed murder attempt on Khalid was undeniably a total security collapse, as was the earlier fatal suicide assault on Burhanuddin Rabbani, the former chief of the Karzai regime's floated Afghan High Peace Council. In both the cases, the perpetrators of the attack posed as the Taliban's peace envoys. Obviously, the Afghan security establishment did not subject them to screening. No effort was evidently made to check their credentials and their bona fides, either. And this was a costly lapse, which should not have occurred at all. It made it easier for Rabbani's assassin to carry the lethal explosives in his turban and Khalid's attacker under his underwear.
Of course, this lapse reflects pungently the Kabul establishment's frustration and despair over its failure in engaging the Taliban in any peace foray with it so far or creating some fissures in their ranks. No high-profile Taliban leader has defected to the government. And not even a single Taliban leader of some standing has the Afghan intelligence been able to rope in to be their interlocutor or proxy. From one to all, the Taliban remain committed unbendingly not to talk to the Karzai regime, which they label as mere puppet of the occupying powers and hence a lame duck. In sheer desperation, the Kabul regime functionaries thus leap up to embrace anyone posing to be the Taliban's peace envoy and get duped so grievously.
Karzai is well-advised not to throw the burden of his regime's frustrations, despondencies and collapses on the shoulders of Pakistan and set about putting his own house in order. Pakistan, he must understand, is the only country that sincerely wishes a stable Afghanistan at peace with itself. For, no other country has suffered as much as has Pakistan on account of the chaos and turmoil in Afghanistan over these past several decades. So much so, it has become a horrific victim of militancy, terrorism and religious stridency that have become the Achilles' heel of its national security, cohesion and solidarity.
If his spymaster was hobnobbing with his attacker, it was surely not at Islamabad's behest but on his own volition and at his own initiative. Karzai should know this and accept this inexorable reality. He should not rub the point that the attack was planned in Pakistan, because it is too jarring and too untenable. It grates on the mind when this country is going every extra mile to help Afghanistan acquire security, peace and stability, no lesser for the vested interest that any more turbulence in its western neighbour would hurt it in no less measure. It is to this end that it has already released several Taliban leaders and is agreeable to release many more.
After all, with what face can Karzai strike postures of such gaudy piety and righteousness when in these very times fugitive Pakistani militants, including Swati thug Fazlullah, are comfortably safely nestled up in sanctuaries in Afghanistan's Kunar and Nuristan provinces. From there, they have launching murderous attacks on Pakistani border posts and civilian villages in battalion-strengths with deadly sophisticated weapons and killing the innocent in scores. More than once, those brigands have beheaded the captured Pakistani soldiers and put the footage of their slaughtered heads on worldwide display. Yet Karzai has never ever condescended to shed a crocodile tear or two on those gruesome murders, even for form's sake. Could there be a greater hypocrisy than this?
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