‘Why should we target those who are not against us —- an enemy of America is not necessarily our enemy as well.” I was astonished to see the calmness on Sartaj Aziz’ face, who is the Advisor to Pakistan’ prime minister on National Security and Foreign Affairs, when he defended Pakistan’ position during a televised interview with a foreign TV network. I have no idea for how long we will continue to live in denial that Al-Qaeda has roots in Pakistan. We hear statements like there is a difference between good and bad Taliban, Punjabi Taliban don’t even exist, there are no terrorists sanctuaries in North Waziristan, Haqqani Network, who Haqqani? It is an Afghan tribe, why should they be in Pakistan? Time proved that we were unable to convince the world on all these excuses and were shown the mirror again and again, but at the cost of wide spread destruction and bloodshed, not only inside Pakistan but in the neighboring countries as well.

Now Pakistan and Afghanistan have theoretically moved towards increased cooperation to evict the cancer of terrorism on both sides, Sartaj is singing the same old song; a good ‘Talib’ is our asset unless he bites us. That’s moving in circles and then complaining, why there is no exit. It’s a hopeless situation, perhaps we don’t want to learn from our mistakes. Operation Zarb-e-Azb might have disturbed the terrorists’ network but most of them had enough time to move to other hideouts, thanks to the long discussion between the government and religious parties and the so-called peace talks with the terrorists. One would expect some sort of explanation from the government on such a blunt, rather shamelessly acceptance of the facts from its very seasoned advisor.


Saudi Arab, November 18.