Here we go again. The TTP have reached into their store of perceived insults and come up with the word 'secular'. As if their response to the offer of unconditional talks, which included demands to stop drones, demonstrate sincerity, etc, were not enough, the Taliban felt the need to add to the undoable list.
Now it appears the constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan -- a land in which no law contrary to the Quran or Sunnah can be made, where no non-Muslim is allowed to be Prime Minister, and where the state, in fact, determines who can and cannot call themselves a Muslim -- is, in the TTP's view, "secular". It boggles the mind what more Pakistan can do to prove to the TTP that it is, in fact, teetering on the brink of being defined as a theocracy?
‘It wasn’t us who bombed the church in Peshawar, but we’d like to shake the hand of those who did,’ was the sum of a previous statement – along with a reassurance to the apparently ‘infidel’ Pakistani state that their nuclear installations would not be a target of TTP attacks. Is this announcement meant to inspire gratitude? Judging from the government’s laissez-faire attitude towards tackling militancy, it might have done just that.
Malala’s campaign for women’s education was apparently “anti-Islamic” propaganda, according to the TTP spokesman. Critics of Malala’s relocation in the UK would do well to pay attention to the TTP’s promise to “target her again, if we get the chance”.
Even Imran Khan’s relentless campaigning for the Taliban did not save him from a rebuke. “Quit the path of western democracy”, said the TTP spokesman; perhaps forgetting to attach an invite to a cave in Miranshah, in return for Imran Khan’s offer of opening a TTP political office.
How long will this absurd pantomime continue? The weekly edition of the ‘TTP says the darndest things’ is getting to be a bore. Will the government continue to let itself be mocked publicly by those they insist on pandering to? It is incomprehensible why the government, or the intelligence, or anyone else for that matter, can ban Skype, Viber, Tango, all cell phone services and social media in a trice, but seems unable to track down a group of persons so dedicated to public projection and propaganda dissemination. The TTP are not in hiding, they are not shy, and they are enemies of the state that the state does not seem to know how to deal with. It’s simple. Find them, silence them, and end this poisonous charade.