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Afghanistan: The Only Good Strategy Is An Expiring One

Afghanistan: The Only Good Strategy Is An Expiring One

"We will increase our products if USAID rents a free zone for Afghan carpets in New Delhi or other cities in India", said Haji Nabi, head of Afghanistan Carpet Industry Union. If the threats against Pakistan by United States are a repeat of earlier statements at the highest level from the American administration, the reactions appear familiar.

Dropping propaganda leaflets is a basic part of military psychology operations, and has been widely used by coalition forces in Afghanistan. Although the Pakistani army publicly denies they are harbouring Taliban, the USA emissaries expected General Bajwa not to maintain the same line in their discussions with them.

"As the (President Donald Trump's) administration has said, Pakistan must change its approach".

Three US soldiers were wounded and an Afghan interpreter was killed, the Washington Examiner reported Thursday, in the blast that occurred at an enemy-control point outside of Bagram Airfield, the LA Times and Reuters reported. Pakistan must in its own interest find ways of debunking this charge because anyone who subscribes to this view of Taliban's usefulness is not a friend of Pakistan. Retired Gen. Ashfaq Pervez Kiani, who was Pakistan army chief at the time, handed over his white paper to President Obama as a blueprint for Afghan reconciliation. Washington's backing for New Delhi to play a larger security role in Afghanistan will fuel the India-Pakistan proxy war. China, at the behest of Pakistan, twice this year prevented the United Nations from listing the group's leader, Masood Azhar, as a globally designated terrorist.

Some local analysts foresee new political and strategic alignments in the region following the new US strategy and Pakistan's "rare" reaction. And that will change immediately. The implication is that ultimately the USA could impose sanctions on Pakistan. The officials didn't clarify if the citizen was a uniformed service member or a private military contractor. Imposing of sanctions would mean Pakistan would also lose support and trade from North Atlantic Treaty Organisation member nations and other countries as well.

Second reason for Pakistan's anger is even more important. Opposition politician and former Pakistani Ambassador to the U.S. Sherry Rehman said the BRICS statement was unsurprising. What was most outrageous was when Trump said, "We are not nation-building again".

There is also no use reminding the U.S. of the sacrifices Pakistan has made in the fight against terrorism because we didn't get into the Afghanistan mess at anybody else's bidding. India has given Afghanistan more than $2bn worth of aid and infrastructure projects.

However, Islamabad continued to take solace in blaming both Afghanistan and India for allowing and using Afghan soil for a proxy war against Pakistan. The growing relationship between India and Afghanistan was seen as a threat to Pakistan and that is one reason why the Pakistani leadership has been fostering and fomenting terror inside the territories of Afghanistan and India with greater vigour. Their mission was to apprehend the architect of the September 11, 2001, attacks, al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden, who was being harbored by a separate Afghan terrorist group called the Taliban. In 2015, the disclosure of Mullah Omar's death during the Murree peace talks between the representatives of the Taliban and Afghan government derailed a process that looked promising. Pakistan believes the path to Afghan reconciliation goes through Islamabad and requires power-sharing with the Taliban.

Both Trump and Obama made a decision to stay in Afghanistan, though both talked about withdrawal in their past. Trump blames Pakistan for America's deeply flawed and failed Afghan policy. Worse, he further appeased India. It has learnt a bitter lesson in Sri Lanka. Pakistan has always been anxious about India's presence in Afghanistan.


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