web analytics
September 2, 2015 / 18 Elul, 5775
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post


Home » InDepth » Op-Eds »

When US Troops Leave Afghanistan

Herein lies the problem in Pakistan. The political class is simply unwilling to confront the Taliban which operates freely across much of the FATA region.
us-troops-leaving-afghanistan.jpeg

Photo Credit: YY

The Pakistani Taliban caused widespread revulsion when it recently gunned down 14-year-old Malala Yousafzai, whose “crime” was to ask for an education. Although assassinations and terrorism are common in Pakistan, what provoked such outcry is that Yousafzai was targeted because of her background as a campaigner for women’s rights.

Yousafzai lives in the Mingora area of Swat in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) of Pakistan, where scores of Taliban and al-Qaeda fighters have taken refuge. Yousafzai first captured their attention after launching a campaign against attempts by the Taliban to impose their version of Shariah law in the region, whereby men were forced to grow their beards and girls were prevented from attending school. She has campaigned against these demands since the age of 11.

For her efforts, Yousafzai was given a bravery award by Pakistani President Yousuf Raza Gilani last year. She was rightly celebrated and championed by politicians from across all sides of the political spectrum. Yet, not one of them ever bothered to question why a teenager needs to campaign for her right to an education. No one thought to question who would fear a small, young girl.

Herein lies the problem in Pakistan. The political class is simply unwilling to confront the Taliban which operates freely across much of the FATA region. Instead, they make political capital from criticising the drone program operated by the United States which targets terrorists in FATA. It is true that drones can sometimes be a blunt and clumsy tool, but in the absence of any will by Pakistani authorities to chase down the terrorists operating in FATA, this program is the only lifeline available to residents there who oppose the Taliban.

Two weeks ago the cricketer-turned-politician, Imran Khan, vowed to lead a “peace convoy” to Waziristan, another Taliban hotbed in FATA. Khan said he wanted protest drone strikes but, in the end, stopped short of entering FATA after the Taliban threatened to attack him. Without a hint of irony, Khan continued to blame the United States for the problems in Pakistan.

After the attempted assassination of Yousafzai, Khan was again directing his rage at America – rather than those who pulled the trigger. He told a press conference (available in Urdu here) that the Pakistani government has antagonised the Taliban by launching a crackdown in the tribal areas. Worse, he said that Taliban fighters who targeted coalition forces in Afghanistan are fighting a “legitimate jihad.”

The Afghan government reacted angrily to these comments, telling the Guardian:

Either [Imran Khan is] profoundly and dangerously ignorant about the reality in Afghanistan, or he has ill will against the Afghan people.

Our children are killed on daily basis, civilians killed, and our schools, hospitals and infrastructure attacked on a daily basis. To call any of that jihad is profoundly wrong and misguided.

Although Yousafzai was shot in the head she has survived the Taliban’s attempts to kill her, and is now in Britain where she is receiving special medical attention. Yet the spokesman for the Pakistani Taliban, Ehsanullah Ehsan, has vowed to try again to kill her.

He has branded Yousafzai an “American spy,” who spread “Western ideas.” In a statement to the Pakistani press,Ehsan said:

She was pro-West, she was speaking against Taliban and she was calling President Obama her idol. She was young but she was promoting Western culture in Pashtun areas.

In a subsequent statement, he added:

In Islam and Pakhtun traditions there is absolutely no room for an attack on a woman of pure virtues. But in cases where a woman is seen as a clear sinner who stands in defiance of Shariah, such a woman is not only allowed to be attacked but there is an obligatory instruction for such an action.

She not only spied against Mujahideen but also created propaganda against them. The Gul Makai diary [an online diary Yousafzai wrote for the BBC about life under the Taliban] is an embodiment of anti-Taliban views. She has received the punishment for her sin.

The attack on Yousafzai perfectly encapsulates all that is wrong with Pakistan today. The Taliban arrogate for themselves the role of arbiters of public morality and conduct. They kill anyone who disagrees with them and are allowed to operate with impunity.

About the Author: Shiraz Maher holds a degree in History from the University of Leeds and an MPhil in Historical Studies from Cambridge University. After leaving university, he worked as a journalist, reporting on terrorism, radicalization and the Middle East. His writings have appeared in the Times, Sunday Times, Daily Telegraph, Daily Mail, Guardian, New Statesman, Prospect, Wall Street Journal and Standpoint.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

4 Responses to “When US Troops Leave Afghanistan”

  1. Charlie Hall says:

    Jeffrey Goldberg has written that the #1 worry for the world should not be Iran but an imploding nuclear Pakistan.

    At the moment the Taliban's influence is pretty much limited to FATA, and Pakistanis in the rest of Pakistan have never had much use for Muslim extremists, but Pakistan's civil institutions are weak and the civilian leadership is terribly corrupt.

  2. Pakistan is a sleeping gun,which I pray never wakes up,meaning Jeffory's fears are shared by many…

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
Pennsylvania Senator Bob Casey (D)
Bad Day for Nuclear Iran Deal Opponents
Latest Indepth Stories
The Palestinians have desecrated Joseph's Tomb on more than one occasion.

The purpose of an attack on Joseph’s Tomb is to murder Jews at prayer and destroy a Jewish holy site

Broken Telephone

A nuclear Khomenist Tehran will be a threat to Western democracies and to Jerusalem in particular

Major Monster, "Shirley Temper" looking at the cameraman.

The MONSTERS of Nebi Saleh know well the damning, visceral impact of powerful, deceitful imagery.

Proud Members of Jewish Voice for Peace

Jewish Voice for Peace openly supports BDS movement against ALL of Israel & ending the Jewish State.

In recent years, there has been a big push to grow and develop American Football here in Israel.

Unlike Judaism & Christianity which honors “truth,” Islam pursues “Taqiyya,” strategic lying

Yashar Lachayal’s mission is to learn what IDF soldiers’ need and get it to them when they need it.

Corbyn leading the Britain’s Labour Party polls, describes Hamas & Hizbullah as England’s “friends.”

The convicted murderer was released from Israeli prison with more than two dozen other sociopaths

JCF is a donor/supporter of The New Israel Fund which supports BDS & wants IDF soldiers prosecuted

The ‘Peace Industry’ promotes its adherents; weak leaders, both military & political, is the result

The conundrum for US Labor Zionists: Lobbying for Iran deal while Israel’s Left lobby’s against it.

What does the Torah want from our small nation described as “they who struggle with God & with men”?

Mr. Nadler’s support for the deal is a naked political gift to a president who has defied logic in his quest to reinvent international affairs according to his ideological inclinations.

More Articles from Shiraz Maher
us-troops-leaving-afghanistan.jpeg

Herein lies the problem in Pakistan. The political class is simply unwilling to confront the Taliban which operates freely across much of the FATA region. Instead, they make political capital from criticising the drone program operated by the United States which targets terrorists in FATA. It is true that drones can sometimes be a blunt and clumsy tool, but in the absence of any will by Pakistani authorities to chase down the terrorists operating in FATA, this program is the only lifeline available to residents there who oppose the Taliban.

Rimsha Masih

Last year the governor of the Punjab, Salman Taseer, was shot dead for merely suggesting the blasphemy laws should be changed.

Fears for the future of religious minorities in Egypt were accentuated earlier this month when it was announced that the last synagogue in the country would be closed down. The Eliyahu Hanavi Synagogue, which had operated in Alexandria, was the last functioning center of Jewish life in the country. It is now clear that its cavernous halls, built in the nineteenth century, will not be open to worshippers hoping to mark Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur services this year.

It needs to be clearly understood America’s civil space program is just as much an instrument of national power as the US Navy or the State Department. It is to be hoped that the President and Congress will in the future recognize this fact.

The latest anti-prostitution campaign in East London typifies an Islamist strategy, which is to create parallel communities for Muslims that do not interact with their non-Muslim neighbors. Islamists use these initiatives to present themselves as active members of the community, often picking on legitimate and understandable concerns. Their aim is to win new recruits and further their divisive agenda.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/when-us-troops-leave-afghanistan/2012/10/28/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: