a difference of opinion

A:     It makes complete sense. Sartaj Aziz is right. Why should we attack the Afghan Taliban when we’re not even their real enemy; it’s the Americans. They are the invading power. They are not fighting us for their freedom.

S:     Trust me, we’re a lot more than just not being real enemies. The world doesn’t point a finger at us without reason. I wonder though, if being engaged in a war with an invading force is all that makes one a freedom fighter. In that case, perhaps the title shouldn’t command such respect and admiration. What if those fighting oppressors themselves aspire to oppress? What if their acts of barbarity are no less horrific than the invaders? Many of them committed against their own people, if I may add.

A:     You can indulge yourself in debating definitions and merits all you like, but facts don’t change Sadiq. However repulsed you may feel by their tactics or values, at the end of the day, they’re real and here. You can’t kill them all. Foreigners will leave one day, and we’ll be left high and dry to deal with them. Remember how they forgot us the last time? You will have to accommodate them somehow, and for doing that, you can’t make an enemy out of them to please the West.

S:     Do you really believe that we’ll ever be at peace with them right by our side, armed to their teeth and a radical, expansionist ideology? For me, they are terrorists. You’ll be surprised to see how many Afghan will agree with them. We can learn something about how they feel from their participation in elections amidst death threats from your glorious freedom fighters.

A:     So, what exactly do you propose? Declare a war on them and start dropping bombs so they start a campaign here too? That’ll do us a lot of good, I’m sure.

S:     Our internal security crisis is all the more reason why we ought to be working with the Afghan government to degrade them. At least for now. It will only help us deal with the TTP and friends, who are operating from there too now. If they can work out a peace treaty there, we can get on board. Sure. The least we can do is stop supporting them.