After the carnage at the APS over a year ago, Mulla Fazlullah had shamelessly boasted that it was the handiwork of his henchmen. In the recent dastardly attack at the Charsada University, Mulla Mansoor, the right hand man of Mulla Fazlullah, claimed to have masterminded the attack after getting “green signal” from his boss.

Our Intelligence Agencies well know that Mulla Fazlullah had long been a hired “Thug” of RAW, as were Baitullah Mehsud and Hakimullah Mehsud before him. Our Govt has sought USA’S help to eliminate Mulla Fazlullah through a drone attack (since the Afghan Govt may not want to - or may not be able to - capture/kill him). However, his elimination would only provide a temporary respite at best, as RAW would soon enough have another hired “thug” to replace him at the head of the TTP.

Therefore, as long as RAW remains entrenched in Afghanistan and so long as the Afghan Government dominated by Northerners (Pro-India and Anti –Pakistan) remain in the driving seat at Kabul, we would continue to suffer sporadic forays from TTP hide-outs from across the border in the adjoining KPK (and by BLA - another “Cats Paw” – in the adjoining Baluchistan). But for Zarb-e-Azab, which mostly eliminated hired assassins of RAW from FATA, we would have continued to suffer large scale terrorist attacks on daily basis all over Pakistan, as had been witnessed over the past decade , causing more than 60,000 casualties and loss of $ 100 Billion to the Economy. It may not be out of place here to mention that both those attacks were preceded with dire warnings by high Indian officials who had threatened to inflict pain on Pakistan - at the time and place of their choosing! What must Pakistan do to deal with RAW orchestrated terrorist attacks?

Pakistan has already provided a dossier of RAW’S involvement to India (at Sharmal Sheikh) and in the recent past to UNO as well as to USA. We have apparently drawn a blank. We must now take it up with the security council and invoke the ruling against states supporting terrorism – in this case India – for aiding and abetting terrorist activities inside Pakistan. Additionally, for whatever it may be worth, we should raise this issue in the OIC, as well as in the recently formed anti-terrorist organization of 36 Islamic countries, for their support and condemnation of India’s RAW.

Simultaneously, we must urge upon the Afghan Govt to get rid of RAW from Afghanistan, as well as restrain its own intelligence Agency from conniving with RAW anti-Pak. activities. In case of un-satisfactory response we should do whatever it takes on our own. We should also send the 2.5 million Afghan refugees back without further delay. In the meantime, they should be moved out of the urban areas into properly guarded remote camps as there are bound to be some terrorists/terrorist facilitators among them. We are a poor country and yet we have given refuge to the highest number of refugees (Afghan) in the world, for decades now. Inspite of this, the various Afghan Governments instead of being thankful, have been most ungrateful.

The peace Forum comprising Pakistan, Afghanistan, China and USA must also be approached to accelerate the process for negotiated settlement between the Taliban (the Pashtun majority) and the Afghan Govt (dominated by the minority Northerners), for the former’s rightful representation in the Afghan “Shoora” India would obviously oppose any such reproachment whereby Pashtun majority would dominate the Afghan Govt. However, Failure would be no option, as it would mean continuation of Civil war in Afghanistan and therefore perpetual turmoil in the region (was that what President Obama had alluded to in his state of the union Address?).

Most importantly, we must physically secure our own borders. According to one estimate, nearly 20,000 persons and 6,000 vehicles daily ply across the western border – mostly unchecked. While allowing for free movement of the tribesmen across the border with in FATA. We must erect physical barriers (like deep trenches) at the fringes of the settled areas so as to Channel all movements along the main roads in to the settled areas. And each main road must have multiple check posts i.e. Immigration, customs, F.C and police – and where necessary an Army check post. Thus, chances of the terrorist/smugglers getting through the gauntlet of the multi-layered checks would be rather slim.

Similarly, a deep trench all along the Eastern border may also be constructed. It would even help during the re-current floods, if proper laterals are built to divert the flood water to it. All it would take some 100 or so bull-dozers to dig deep trenches on both borders within a matter of months. It would be comparatively cheap yet effective way of securing our borders (India had already built steel fencing from Indian ocean all the way to the foot of Himalayas in Kashmir).

Another important measure would be to establish a dedicated anti-Raw agency to solely focus on RAW’S activities to fore-stall and pre-empt its mischiefs and if “Push comes to a shove” to let her taste a bit of her own medicine. Unfortunately, in the “Covert War”, only “tit for tat” policy proves to be an effective anti-dote. An agency called NACTA (National counter terrorism Authority) was established some two years ago – but it has yet to take –off. Apparently, necessary political will is lacking for whatever reason! Our nation has already suffered hugely – we must operationalize NACTA without further delay.

Last, but certainly not the least, it is imperative for the entire nation to accept the reality that we are facing a low intensity war – a new type of war – a covert (Hidden) war - thrust upon us by India through its notorious agency RAW (As India realises that it can no longer resort to open warfare – as it did in separating “East Pakistan” - for fear of Nuclear retaliation). Once we accept and formally declare it so, we must let the Armed forces play their constitutional role to fight the war – whether of external aggression or of internal subversion - posing existential threat to Pakistan. (It is well beyond the Ken and capacity of the F.C./Police to effectively counter the Covert war on their own).

The Armed forces must take up the challenge of Internal Security by way of planning and coordinating the defence of all sensitive installations/institutions – through static measures as well as by training and providing suitable weapons to the selected personnel from those installations/institutions. And where it may not be possible or desirable to do so, provide ex-servicemen for security.

The Armed forces must also coordinate, collect and collate information from Multi-farious civil and military intelligence Agencies to be able to foresee and to pre-empt rather than to react to terrorist attacks. Also, operation centres at the Federal, provincial and district levels be set up – backed by quick reaction force (QRF) - including Helliborne units - equipped with advanced communication system to be able to rapidly react to any crises situation. Infact, the respective corps should oversee and coordinate with Civil Armed forces as well as relevant Civil Authorities for all security issues and for conduct of anti-terrorist operations in their respect areas of responsibility.

Pakistanis are a courageous and a resilient people - as our tremendous sacrifices of the past and the present show. Our battle hardened Armed forces are among the best in the world. Our scientists have provided us with “All spectrum” Nuclear and missile capability. We as a people, therefore, must not under-estimate ourselves not run our beloved country down in front of others (Professor Jomong of china once remarked that Pakistanis are their own worst enemies). Our leadership too must rise above their political squabbling and display greater courage, wisdom and selflessness to steer the ship of state out of the troubled waters, to the haven of peace and prosperity – especially for the sake of the ordinary citizens who have suffered long and hard, yet given their best. .

“Let it not be said that we did not prove equal to the task” - Qaid-e-Azam.