US Policy Shift and Afghanistan Quagmire

Suhail Mandukhel
Once again, US showed its expected quirk against Pakistan. The narrative floated by US president is based on the assumption: that Pakistan is willfully neglectful of its commitment to root out Taliban more specifically ‘Haqqani Network’ and different terrorist outfits are pegging soil of Pakistan against US interests in Afghanistan. The reality, however, is more complex and tortuous. Pakistan, despite having illimitable inside problems, is contributing a seminal part in war against terror.
Owing to this “imposed” war, Dwellers and law-enforcing forces of Pakistan have been offering undaunted sacrifices for the enforcement of peace. Instead of compensating said loss wreaked on Pakistan, US invariably comes out with typical rhetoric of “do more” and “do immediately.” However, it will also be unfair to shift entire responsibility unto US. Misgivings of US about role of Pakistan are partly correct. In order to iron out these fault-lines, one should first underscore gapes and holes manifested by both Pakistan and US in war against terror.
The position of Pakistan is somehow ambiguous due to conflicting narratives. Pakistan wants itself to be given a legitimate proprietary in war against terror. While on the other hand, it declares to have no any sort of connection with Taliban. Such Janus-faced policy of Islamabad provides US-based think tanks to make a sarcastic sentence: that If Pakistan hasn’t any liaison with Taliban; then there leaves no any relevance of him with war-in-Afghanistan. Ultimately, Pakistan is being hurled with a demand to stop “hedging the bets” and show its cards.  So this fact provides us a reason to conclude that Pakistan should adopt a seemly policy while dealing with US in war against terror. Otherwise, hard-nosed super-power will turn up heat on Pakistan in an unthinkable degree. US can’t proceed without employing utmost significance possessed by Pakistan due to geographical contiguity with Afghanistan.
In a second check, US policy is to be deconstructed. Given the oft-taken backtracks of US, it is fully fair to write that as yet, super-power couldn’t have comprehended the intricacies of ongoing war in Afghanistan. “Too much optimism” and then “too much pessimism” displayed intermittently by US have acutely exposed its shallowness. First, a miscalculated announcement was made by George W. Bush on June 24, 2004 at Camp David, that “Key Al-Qaeda terrorists had been successfully neutralized”. But soon, he had to revise the policy. From then on, US has been taking constantly about-faces. Former president Obama had sanctioned scaling-down of American forces whereas incumbent president has redeployed more forces in Afghanistan. This establishes that US is pursuing a misleading tangent.
It must borne in mind that problem can’t be solved only militarily; it needs sociopolitical maneuvers which will be conducive providing that US endorses the efficacious role of Pakistan. Furthermore, US had better given Pakistan thumbs-up rather than a misbegotten rhetoric. Secondly, the misplaced influence of India in Afghanistan must be diminished.
Writer is a student of Law at International Islamic University Islamabad. He tweets at @SuhailMandukhel
DisclaimerViews expressed in this article are those of the author and Balochistan Voices not necessarily agrees with them.
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