COAS General Kayani has brought out in comprehensive terms the Pakistan governments current position with regard to the war on terror, which he had explained at a recent conference of NATO commanders in Brussels. He was talking to a group of foreign correspondents at Islamabad on Monday. One would generally appreciate and endorse Pakistans strategic objectives that he outlined, though one cannot help taking exception to the fallacy of owning this war, which is conceived, sponsored and led by the US. It was imposed on us in complicity with General Musharraf. Our unfortunate folly of taking on our own people has led us to the sorry pass at which we helplessly stand today, in mortal dread of militants. In a much larger number has been the loss of innocent civilians, than the 2273 officers and soldiers, he disclosed, that the Pakistan army has had to tragically sacrifice at the altar of US interests. He was also right in highlighting the fact that our economic losses were the maximum. It is a pity that neither the US, which dragged us into the war, nor other Western countries supporting it, have come forward with anything close to compensating the damage we have suffered. One would have also wished that General Kayanis assuring words, There is, however, no need at this point to start a steamroller operation in North Waziristan, would have been differently worded (without the expression at this point) and accompanied by a declaration that we would soon start dialogue with the people who have taken up arms because of our misguided policies. However, General Kayanis delineation of Pakistans strategic paradigm and underlining the need for friendly relations with Afghanistan for peace and harmony to prevail in the region, are the most apt and must be welcomed. And, in this context, he explained what ought to be understood when Pakistan talked of 'strategic depth. It does not imply controlling Afghanistan, but he rightly added, If Afghanistan was peaceful, stable and friendly we have our strategic depth because our western borders are secure.You are not looking both ways. And Islamabads aspirations in this regard cannot be more honestly affirmed than his offer of training the Afghan security forces. That would mean frequent interaction of the Afghan security forces with Pakistans, with the spill-over effect of deeper understanding between them. It would be difficult to question his statement that with Islamabads doors open on this score, it would be a win-win situation for all concerned: Afghanistan, the United States, NATOs International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) and, of course, Pakistan. The US must see the value and genuineness of this offer and make sure that India is not allowed to muddy the waters. It must be kept at an arms length.