The war with Talibans has begun. Our soldiers are involved in a pitched battle. They are laying down their lives for our security in the call of duty. The All Parties Conference (APC) has been called to deliberate. The message that APC needs to send across the nation is that there is no question of confusion or uncertainty and whatever it takes and notwithstanding any collateral consequences, this war has to be won at all costs. While we all need to pray for everyone affected, including the IDPs, to my mind the time for debate regarding the pros and cons of this war is over. Whether we agree with it or not, this is the moment when we all have to stand united and give unconditional support and backing to our armed forces to ensure that their moral remains high and they continue to be motivated that they are fighting this war for the protection of their countrymen. This is also the time when we as civilians need to contribute through monitory means and by rendering civilian services to ensure that the war effort continues successfully. While the actual battles are being fought by the armed forces of Pakistan, the major fallout of this war is the IDPs. As I pointed out in my last article titled The other side of war with Talibans, the IDPs face massive and life threatening problems resulting from being displaced and having to live in camps, which include the spread of deadly diseases, rapes, kidnapping and even deaths from starvation. We cannot leave it to the government or foreign agencies to do everything because the simple fact is that they cannot. We as Pakistanis need to voluntarily reach out to the IDPs and give them as much aid and render them as many services as each one of us can give. In the end we do not want these IDPs to turn against Pakistan as that will have a direct negative impact on the success of the war that our soldiers are fighting. At the same time the need of the hour is to show complete solidarity with our fighting forces. I once visited a private war display in Spain where amongst many well-known soldiers the picture of our very own famous singer Noor Jehan had been displayed. This was a surprise to me. Upon my asking I was then informed that a major part of the war effort is to keep the soldiers in the battle ground motivated and convinced that they are fighting a just war for their country and Noor Jehan through her songs provided this motivation to the Pakistani Army in the two wars fought with India in 1965 and 1971. The display in-charge had thought it fit to put Noor Jehan's photograph amongst the various soldiers. This is what we, as a nation, need to do. Keep our armed forces motivated and their spirits high with the knowledge that the nation is behind them. There are numerous examples where even the thought of going to war has been unpopular, but once the war has begun all debate and dissent has been ended in the larger interest of the nation. The only concentration has then been on winning. Before the invasion of Iraq by US there were huge demonstrations within US against its government. Many legislators and intellectuals vehemently opposed this invasion. However once the war started, the opposition vanished and the entire nation - media, government and civilians worked towards damage control and winning the war. In fact the US media voluntarily became embedded with US soldiers fighting in Iraq. Chomsky, one of the most vocal critics of the Bush regime and a diehard anti-Iraq invasion campaigner too, stopped his criticism and did not write a single article once the war had begun, Even Human Rights were thrown out of the window and the US Supreme Court, generally thought to be the champion of civil liberties, sanctioned the without trial imprisonment of inmates at Guatemala and accepted that even hebious corpus would not be available to the suspected terrorist. Everything was subjected to the ultimate aim of being successful in the war. Country came first. Ask any solider and he will readily admit that when soldiers are risking their lives for the sake of the cause, they need unqualified support from the civilian population. This is what keeps them going. This war with Talibans is for Pakistan and once it has begun, the only option is to win; for losing will have unquantified disastrous results for the nation and mean that the face of Pakistan as we know and want it, will change forever. The media has one of the greatest roles to play in these circumstances and there can be no two views that this is not the time for the various TV channels to air debates. At this important juncture media must project whatever is required to support the war. As the COAS Kayani has projected, this war is likely to continue for some time. I really hope that APC would come forth with a clear resolution and vision preparing the nation for the long haul. I would hope to also see national songs blaring from all the radio and TV stations and Pakistani flags in support of this war flying from all the cars, motorcycles, cycles and tongas plying the roads of Pakistan. The spirit should be that if Abdul Sattar Edhi stands on the roads of Lahore asking for aid for the IDPs, there should be queues of people upto neighbouring districts vying to contribute. The national spirit, which I am sure, is bursting in every Pakistani, needs to be openly expressed in support of the war. There is no need to be shy of nationalism. In the 1965 war there was a spontaneous outpouring of nationalist poems which were readily sung by all the singers so much so that India took this as proof that Pakistan had been preparing to go to war well in advance. I urge that such sentiments need to be repeated now. In the end, I may quote from the brief statement made by Churchill, which became one of the greatest calls to arms ever uttered. This was the time when Germany was conquering country after country and survival of Britain seemed uncertain. Churchill then said: "We have before us, many months of struggle and suffering. What is our policy?....War with all our might and I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears and sweat with all the strength God has given us....what is our aim?....It is victory...victory at all costs - victory in spite of all terrors - victory, however long and hard the road may be, for without victory there is no survival." The writer is an advocate of the Supreme Court of Pakistan E-mail: mnz@nexlinx.net.pk