Strategy for post-2014 scenario
TO many, a seemingly hasty pullout by US-led Nato forces from Afghanistan may present a desirable situation for Pakistan’s military establishment for its pertinent reasons.
But a more realistic strategy, given the disastrous domestic security at the hands of religious fanatics, must be hammered out for a post-2014 Afghanistan which should be less adventurous and more peaceful.
Considering the case of Afghanistan, such a policy must be aimed at bringing diverse ethnic factions, including the Taliban, to a mutually acceptable power-sharing formula which can help prevent a chaotic picture similar to the one followed by the Soviet pullout in 1989.
This, in turn, would need all stakeholders, specifically the Afghan Taliban, to avoid violence. They should be persuaded by all means by Pakistan’s high brass to pursue a more peaceful and political role in order to become an acceptable Afghan player in the region.
A dual approach to the Taliban challenge, as is already being aired by some views, with the Afghan Taliban being unleashed and the TTP being resurrected would never lead to a stable western frontier, which is of paramount importance to deal with the threats emanating from the eastern border.
It is critical for senior military officials to choose no favourites this time around. The most suitable mechanism to deter fundamentalism in the region must be an ‘all or none response’.