The Pakistan Army is said to have conveyed to Washington its willingness to go into North Waziristan but in the trade off wants immediate end to drone attacks in the region.
In the first place Pakistan Army, it is said, is not willing to be caught in the drone crossfire and suffer unnecessary casualties by way of collateral damage. And secondly the army does not want to move in without first conducting thorough scouting of the area which it is further said, it does not believe was possible with drone sorties continuing their deadly attacks on a daily basis.
Most unofficial strategic analysts, therefore, consider as totally uncalled for the US demand that Pakistan Army should launch an offensive in North Waziristan against Taliban “as soon as possible” while Washington continued its drone missions. ”The decision whether or not to launch the offensive against the outlawed Tehreeki- Taliban Pakistan (TTP) in North Waziristan and if at all when, should be left entirely to the Pakistan Army,” said these analysts.
In their opinion the army has so far done an excellent job of uprooting the TTP from its strong holds in most of the areas it has moved into and if at all it felt the need to go into NW it would certainly do so but would pick its own time for launching such a campaign. Meanwhile, according to these analysts signals emanating lately from the TTP camp indicate a willingness on the part of the Tehreek to put an end to its militant activities and resolve all issues through negotiations with the government in Islamabad.
Those who believe such to be the case point to what they said tapering off of suicide attacks and bombings in major cities in recent weeks. The elements who keep a close watch on the activities of militants inside Pakistan and Afghanistan also acknowledge having observed an all round weakness in the rank and file of TTP, especially among its leadership.
“This could be because the army has successfully defanged the TTP and now the latter is left with no option but to seek a ceasefire perhaps in order to regroup and recoup” observed one of the analysts on condition of anonymity. However, he thought in view of the past experience the army was hardly likely to ease off its military campaign against the militants and was also not likely, in his opinion, to agree to negotiations until the TTP agrees to dismantle its camps, give up its arms caches and stop its militant activities completely.
In the past, the TTP has used peace agreements only to regroup and rearm and then resume their terrorist attacks with redoubled ferocity and viciousness. In his opinion Pakistan should not negotiate with the TTP until its fire power is totally decimated. He further claimed that the signs were very clear that the Tehreek was in total disarray and on the run.
He said those who refer to the so-called offers of peace by Washington to Afghan Taliban and Hizb-i-Islami of Afghan warlord Gubuddin Hekmatyar to advance their argument in favour of starting dialogue with the TTP by Pakistan government ignore the fact that all these US offers of negotiations are conditional to total surrender by Afghan Taliban. Maulana Fazalur Rehman has repeatedly offered his services for brokering a peace deal between the government and the TTP. And two former army generals, Aslam Baig and Hameed Gul have also been advocating a dialogue between government and the TTP.
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