The TTP is regrouping close to the border right under the nose of the Afghan security forces while the army sweeps south trying to get rid of the threat. Many of the militants fled to Afghanistan, and will continue to be a source of worry to the military as well as to Afghanistan where the Taliban continue to make their presence felt. The fugitive TTP chief Mullah Fazllullah is also believed to be hiding in those areas. Islamabad has sought Fazllulah’s extradition from Afghanistan, but Kabul is not forthcoming to such a demand. Indian aggression is another front now open, and the army is needed everywhere. Going on statements by the Director General of Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), Maj Gen Asim Bajwa on Wednesday, the armed forces were made for this, that the military was capable of giving an appropriate response. The International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan, the NATO as well as the Afghan government had been taken into confidence and were in on the whole operation. Now that Karzai is gone, it is hoped that President Ghani can work with Islamabad, rather than accuse us of infiltration and sabotage like his predecessor.

Bajwa said that at least 2,500 raids had been carried out across the country with the help of intelligence agencies during the Zarb-i-Azb, Khyber – I and Karachi operations. As time passed, and with the volume of terrorist casualties, one wants to believe that the situation, though difficult, is under control. He has claimed that militant outfits and their splinter groups often issued statements only to remain relevant and no heed should be paid to such statements. The most recent of these were statements by six top Taliban commanders, pledging allegiance to the Islamic State caliphate in Iraq. The army has also denied any deal making with the terrorists, though this is hard to believe. There has always been a component of creating assets in such rebel groups since the Afghan War, and the ISI will be playing its role. We can only hope that whatever strategy is being employed, it is for the stability of the nation and does not lead to untoward crises in the future.