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A question of motive

// ONE wonders when the agony of Balochistan — and the rest of Pakistan — will end. This country of ours seems to have attracted the evil eye. The recent resolution in the US Congress on the question of freedom for Balochistan is construed by Pakistanis as an unfriendly act. On Feb 16, the subcommitteeRead More »A question of motive

The Afghan quagmire

// RECENTLY, Peshawar hosted a seminar organised under the auspices of the Centre for Discussions and Solutions, an advocacy organisation created by Qazi Hussain Ahmed of the Jamaat-i-Islami. The seminar was attended by a cross-section of Pakistanis including politicians, technocrats, analysts and two former DGs of the ISI, Gen Hamid Gul and Gen Asad Durrani.Read More »The Afghan quagmire

US-Pakistan divergences

// THE US defence secretary, Leon Panetta, has disclosed that Dr Shakil Afridi who ran an anti-polio campaign in Abbottabad succeeded in obtaining DNA samples that led to the discovery of Osama bin Laden and his subsequent death at the hands of US Special Forces during the May 2 raid last year. This statement placesRead More »US-Pakistan divergences

Factors that hinder peace

// AS Pakistan slips deeper into an economic, fiscal and governance mess many analysts conclude simplistically that Pakistan’s overall situation will improve by reviewing Pakistan’s engagement with the US. Secondly, they declare that once foreign policy is revised, it will be easy to make peace with the Pakistani Taliban in Fata and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. TheyRead More »Factors that hinder peace

A troubled country

// PAKISTAN is in the midst of several crises. The picture at this stage appears dismal. However, even in this period of despair there are exceptions that inspire confidence in the future of our country. The other day I was fortunate to witness such an instance, during a PIA flight from Islamabad to Lahore. IRead More »A troubled country

Implications of Nato attack

// THE unprovoked attack on two Pakistani Army check posts in Salala, Mohmand Agency by multiple Nato aircraft and ground troops on Nov 26, is likely to prove one of the lowest points in deteriorating US-Pakistan relations. The incident has occurred at a time when a heated debate is under way in Pakistan regarding theRead More »Implications of Nato attack

The power of narrative

// IS the greatest threat facing Pakistan coming from Al Qaeda as President Obama has said or is it the opening script from the US narrative aimed at prioritising the primacy of the latter and thus hiding what Pakistan’s real threats are? Yes, the insurgency remains a nuisance and eats into Pakistan’s limited resources; itRead More »The power of narrative

Unsatisfactory endgame

// THE received wisdom on invading Afghanistan has been that you may enter the country at will, but you cannot exit from it according to your wishes. This was true in the times of antiquity when Alexander the Great invaded Bactria (near modern-day Balkh in Afghanistan) in 329 BC to capture Bessus, the satrap ofRead More »Unsatisfactory endgame

Terrorism and tribal dynamics

// THE 'war on terror' and the long-drawn-out violence that shows no signs of giving respite has taught Pakistanis a number of important lessons. One of these is that violence seems to grow in proportion to the amount of violence used. It could be that the approach is faulty. However, those whose job it isRead More »Terrorism and tribal dynamics