As we all know, withdrawal of US troops has created a chaos in Afghanistan as the Taliban re-conquer the areas that they once ruled in their pre 911 Islamic state (1996-2001). The withdrawal has rendered the Afghan Regime hopeless as the Taliban have already gained control over, as they claim, about 70pc of the land. And not so astonishingly it was no hard job for them as the out powered and low morale Afghan troops surrender to the Islamic state with no hope for victory left.
Many are celebrating the Doha deal as a success to the Taliban while some debate over the gains that US has exploited there during its longest war in any country. But what should be a matter of concern is the role that Pakistan is going to play in the region and the after effects of this deal for peace which is yet to bring another phase of destruction, chaos and possible mass murder in the region.
The geo-political conditions of Pakistan have its pros and cons. Pakistan is of immense significance to the international community, to America specifically, due to its bordering and trade routes with countries such India, Iran, Afghanistan, China and the Middle East through its sea routes. And because America has a keen interest in the region, it finds Pakistan to be an important ally thus adding to its political significance. Moreover, Pakistan being a developing country also interests America as a potential party to invest and expand its capital in. These are some of the reasons why we stand in dilemmatic situation.
Be it the Afghan Jihad against the Soviet Russia or the post 911 so called war-on-terror, Pakistan has always had its share of destruction affecting not only our international relations but also damaging us internally. We have sadly faced consequences of what has never had to do with us directly. Dozens of refugees coming to the tribal belt, large scale smuggling of arms and drugs are just two examples of the after effects of the wars in the region that were borne by us.
While Afghanistan, with US withdrawal, seems clearly in prewar conditions the Ghani government is crumbling already for over 100 districts have already fallen to the Taliban. With the everyday increasing threat of war in the neighbor country, Pakistan needs to worry.
What exactly should we worry about? Firstly, the Pakistani Taliban thinks of the victories of the Afghan Taliban as theirs. This, adding up to their motivation, makes it likely that Pakistan may see a hike in the activities of Taliban in the country. Moreover, due to connections of Afghan Taliban in tribal belt of Pakistan, it is possible that Taliban insurgents may now and as they have in past, continue operations in and from Pakistan. The risk of igniting sectarian terrorism also remains as the Taliban openly call out for violence against the Shia Muslims. Extremist Wahhabism being practiced by the Islamic state, they have been mercilessly targeting the Hazara Shia community for over two decades only on grounds of the difference of their interpretation of Islam.
Moreover, not so astonishingly the clergy in Pakistan (not all) also encourages and motivates followers for Jihad (joining IS) and it also advocates the Taliban as the real saviors of Islam. This internal threat posed by the clergy is a rising national security challenge as it is likely for the Taliban to recruit, train and use militants from Pakistan for insurgencies in the country.