ONE really wonders if Britain, a major ally of the US with a sizeable fighting force in the Afghan arena, feels that 90 percent of Pushtuns are terrorists what possibility of success in the war on terror could it expect to have? Prime Minister Gordon Brown, who made this scandalous remark, had either taken leave of his senses or must be having an abysmally low sense of judgement. The unanimous castigation of Mr Brown by the NWFP Provincial Assembly on Wednesday is fully justified. Similarly correct is their demand that the central government lodge a strong protest with the British government in this behalf. Mr Brown, perhaps, did not realise that Pushtuns constitute the largest ethnic community of Afghanistan and have a population percentage of 45 to 50 percent. The question arises that if they were terrorists in such an overwhelming majority, do the US-led troops intend eliminating them before claiming victory and staging an exit? They must know that, on the hypothetical assumption that they intend removing all terrorists (90 percent of Pushtuns) from the scene in accordance with their declared policy, not only would they miserably fail but also their own people and their friends would turn against them. Of course, they would have also incurred the hostility of Afghans (Uzbeks and Tajiks included), tribesmen in FATA who are co-ethnic Pushtuns, Pakistanis, in fact, the entire Muslim world. And the dream of winning the hearts and minds of the people, already nowhere in sight, because of the Americans thoughtless policies, would have receded further. Mr Browns observation is also a clear testimony of how out of touch with the reality of Afghanistans situation Britain is, despite its presence for the past eight years and bitter historical experience. The truth is that Pushtuns are not terrorists; they are largely a peace-loving people. They have become a resistance force to throw out the foreign occupiers by hook and by crook, which to the invading troops appears as acts of terrorism. Of all the rest, the British Prime Minister should have known the Pushtun culture better only if he has had some acquaintance with the wars of imperialism his country had fought and known the humiliation it had to bear at the hands of Afghans. The civilian casualties occurring in large numbers at regular intervals are proving a catalyst in bringing the entire Afghan citizenry on the platform of driving out the invaders. Mr Brown should be ashamed of the remark and apologise as well as persuade the other countries with a presence in Afghanistan to plan an exit strategy.