India Intelligence Report

   Pakistan Promises More Troops for Terror



  • Pak to deploy 10,000 more troops on border with Afghanistan to fight terror

  • Says it does not have motives for continued terrorism in Afghanistan

  • Opposition wants troops withdrawn

Pakistan Foreign Minister Khurshid Mahmud Kasuri said that President Musharraf promised visiting US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice 10,000 more troops on its border with Afghanistan. Pakistan has been heavily criticized world over for lack of progress on the war on terror.

Kasuri says that this promised deployment proves that his country is helping militants as alleged by Kabul. He said his Government wants to build energy pipelines and trade corridors through Afghanistan and did not have any motive to keep the conflict going.

Rice acknowledged that this "is a very difficult time for both Afghanistan and Pakistan" facing attacks by the Al-Qaeda and a resurgent Taliban and expressed confidence that the two countries would work together to beat them. She stressed that “The role of the United States in all of this is to keep pressing everyone ahead to deal with the threat.”

Rice praised Musharraf's doctrine of “enlightened moderation” as “a good start” because “one thing is very certain: an extreme Pakistan is not likely to support democratic processes. So let's be very clear about that.” This doctrine is to preserve the nation’s Islamic character in a democracy sort of how Turkish leader Mustafa Kemal Atatürk transformed Turkey. The major problem with this assumption is that while Atatürk was popular in Turkey, Musharraf is not. While Atatürk encouraged democracy, Musharraf does not. Major politicians are either exiled by the state or in self-exile because of fear that they will be persecuted at home.

The Muttahida Majilis-e-Amal (MMA), an alliance of six Islamic political parties opposed the decision to deploy 10,000 more troops in the tribal belt bordering Afghanistan. The MMA secretary general Maulana Fazal-ur-Rehman wants the 80,000 deployed troops withdrawn from the region and the new deployment stopped as “it will affect the peace process in the tribal region.” The MMA is a major supporter of the Taliban.

The only way forward for Pakistan is to foster political plurality and free speech. Islam is not a religion that preaches violence but the Whhabbi Sunni version of it does.

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