28 October, 2020

Free Radicals

Pakistan's crackdown on militants is nominal, they're still flourishing

Free Radicals
Let us make three quick assertions at the outset. First, despite President General Pervez Musharraf's claims of having uprooted the terrorist network in Pakistan, most outlawed militant groups and their leaders are back in business under changed identities, operating freely in the country. Second, these militant groups couldn't have achieved such potency without the support of the Pakistani military and intelligence agencies. Third, the Pakistani establishment needs these groups to achieve its strategic goals in the region.

Now, let's look at the promises General Musharraf made post-9/11, and the actions he initiated against militants. He banned six of the nation's top jehadi and sectarian groups in two phases—on January 5, 2002, and November 14, 2003—declaring that no militant or sectarian group would be allowed to indulge in terrorism to further its cause; he placed under house arrest key jehadi leaders who had criticised his U-turn on Afghanistan and Taliban. Under US pressure, and the looming shadow of an Indo-Pak war, Islamabad was...


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