Rohit's nukkad

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Return of the Taliban

Many of us has seen how the 9/11 attacks on the US changed the defination of "terrorists" for ever. In response to the terrorist attacks US "invaded " Afghanistan to kill Osama bin Laden and destroy the Taleban forces and restore democracy.
It has been 5 years since the invasion and US has been able to put in a democratic government in Afghanistan but the government is so weak that it cannot stand on its own. It needs tremendous international support.
What prompted me to write on this topic was a PBS Frontline program by Martin Smith telecasted on 3rd October 2006 and the video is available on the PBS website (click on the blog link). The episode or more so a documentary shows the history of Taleban and how after so many years neither US nor any other international forces have been unable to eliminate it completely. The problem lies with the Northern tribal parts of Pakistan which share the border with Afghanistan. Pakistan government has totally no control over these areas and during the 2001 Afghanistan invasion by the US many Taleban leaders and soldiers found a safe heaven in these tribal areas. Now Taleban have gathered forces and are within 100 miles of Kabul to gain control of the country. But the possibility of them gaining power in Kabul is very remote since the international forces will not let this happen as it will be a big defeat to all the world nations.
So in this whole history episode where was the problem for not being able to defeat Taleban. Should Pakistan have not allowed the Taleban leaders to enter its geographical borders ? Should they have co-operated more with the US on the war of terror ? As we all know, world politics is not very straight forward.
Firstly, uptil 2001 Pakistan helped create Taleban and bring them in power in Afghanistan. US was more than happy with Taleban because it helped destroy the Soviet in the late '80 thus leaving US as the unchallenged superpower in the world. But suddenly after Sept 11, 2001 things changed and Pakistan was asked to not only not support Taleban but also help the US in destroying it. This is easily said than done. Since the local people don't understand the details of world politics. For them America was the enemy trying to kill their friends "the Taleban". So they provided all the help and support to these Taleban leaders and soldiers.
So do we see an end to this war on terror or is it just going to go on.
It is a very open ended question and only time will tell.