According to a report in this paper, in the backdrop of ongoing bomb blasts and the DI Khan jail break, an impasse between the PTI-led KPK government and the military establishment has arisen. Where the former seems reluctant to go for the use of force in curbing terrorism, the latter insists it is unavoidable.

Military sources have aired their grievance against the KPK government and two of its ministers for being unforthcoming in lending them political backing so as to enable them to carry out 'surgical cleansing’ in parts of FATA, KPK and elsewhere. KPK’s Information Minister Shaukat Yousafzai’s contends that since FATA is already under the military’s control, yet continues to reel under terrorism, it points to the army’s incompetence, which he said was the reason why terrorists were able to move into their province to carry out the jail-break.

This is hardly the moment to idle away time on shaming one another.

The PTI is wrong to still hang on to the hope that talks are the first and last means of ending militancy knowing that the lives of the people of the province --  the hardest hit -- hang by a thread. The terrorists have shown time and again that they care very little for such offers. If they were looking forward to a truce they would have halted the offensive. They are not.

The heavy handed antics that have been the hallmark of both the concerned military command and also sometimes attached to Imran Khan should be shed. The army has experience of operations and peace deals both. They are correct to insist that the enemy is vicious and holds no soft corner for Pakistan or its people. PTI has a point when it says that with all the intelligence apparatus the military ought to have zeroed in on insurgents holed up in the FATA region from where they keep descending on KPK, but it is also trying to stay firm in its electoral promise of initiating talks.

Broadly speaking, if the army was responsible -- even partly-- for letting the genie (the Mujahideen and their progeny the Taliban) out of the bottle it is but natural to expect it to labour to now eviscerate it.

PTI’s ideas such as fighting terrorism with cricket are quixotic; they are certainly ineffective when at an average the Taliban are slaying hundreds each week and freeing hundreds of their fellow guerrillas without any effective resistance. It is necessary for the provincial government and the army to stand shoulder to shoulder, or else the worst hit will be the people of Pakistan, which both claim to serve.