Wednesday, June 4, 2008

The Dragon enters!

(Episode 2 of The Enemies at the Gates!)

There is not a single day when the frontal battle, suicide attacks or school burnings by Taliban are not reported by the media; meanwhile still strong efforts are made to bring the Taliban back onto power.

Karzai and his dominant team; Farooq Wardak, Sebghatullah Mujadadi and etc are anxiously waiting for the day when they would sit at the same table with Mullah Omar, Hekmatyar and other warlord extremists, but what happens to the situation of the people, they don’t care.

The latest surprise of Karzai’s administration for the people was release of Ghairat Baheer by his decree; Hekmatyar’s son- in-law and his spokes person from the prison without any trial or investigation and or any explanation in this regard, which is a sign of Gulbudin Hekmatyar’s return on the political stage of the country.

Who is Hekmatyar?

Although Gulbudin Hekmatyar was the nominated Prime Minister of Mujahedeen Government but because of problems he had with Ahmad Shah Masoud, he ignited the fire of civil war in Kabul in 1992.
Gulbudin Hekmatyar, the leader of Hezb e Islami e Afghanistan (The Islamic Party of Afghanistan) is one of the main initiators of the civil war of 1990s in Kabul, who was not satisfied with the government power sharing among the Jihadi groups after the collapse of communist government in 1991 and then began to launch rockets on Kabul and fight with the other Jihadi parties especially with Shoraye Nezar the party lead by Ahmad Shah Masoud hence thereafter they are called as the warlords or the war criminals.

Photo from
After the collapse of Mujahedin Government by the Taliban, Hekmatyar strengthened and kept his relations with them and with their Al-Qaeeda Godfathers. By taking the side of Taliban as a supportive element Hekmatyar got popularity among them, although even before appearance of the Taliban, because of being financially supported and spiritually inspired by the Pakistani- Pashtoon extremist religious leaders when most of parts of his life time is spent in Pakistan, he had a pro- Talibanism position and in theory he defended the extremist definitions and interpretations of religion in the society.

Quitting Afghanistan, for a period of time Hekmatyar was living in Iran, under protection of the Islamic Republic of Iran in between 1997 to 2002 and then began living in hidden although most of the time it is said that he is hiding in Pakistan.

After the attack of the USA on the Taliban in 2001, he opposed the new Afghan government and called it a puppet government by the foreigners and announced Jihad against the coalition forces of foreign troops and called them as the foreign invaders, and the same as Al-Qaeeda Leaders, he sent his voice massages through radio stations or his written messages by internet. Thereafter in February 2003 his name was in the watch list of the CIA.

Nowadays, while the offices his party Hezb e Islami are open in different provinces of Afghanistan including the capital, Hekmatyar as the main leader of the party is still disappearing.
Since a few months ago there were rumours regarding the direct contact of Karzai with Hekmatyar for series of negotiations to bring him back into the government, and finally the release of his son- in- law and spokesperson from prison has confirmed the reality of these rumours.

At the same time, while the Taliban and their extremist adherents are free from the pressures of Pakistan government, the Afghan government also follows the same strategy, as if every thing in Kabul is totally dependant on Islamabad; the goals of both administrations seem to be the same, that is providing a space for extremists and fundamentalists in the political arenas of both counties but only the tactics are different. Pakistan signs peace agreement, releases their commanders by dramatic kidnappings shows and Kabul releases them through Peace Strengthening Commission, by ethnic reasons and relationships or by direct presidential decrees.
This way the Taliban have enough time and energy to strengthen themselves day by day in both countries and expand their terrorist operations such as frontal battles, school burnings, suicide attacks and spreading fear in the country. On the other hand, while more than forty countries are involved in peace keeping mission in Afghanistan, recently the NATO commander in Afghanistan has announced that the resources are not enough to fight against the Taliban which is a bit enigmatic for the Afghans and strengthens the moral of the Taliban instead.

Negotiating with Taliban is not only an attempt by Karzai and his team but also the National Front as the biggest opposition of Karzai’s administration also did not deny approaching the Taliban for negotiations.

It confuses the people when for both sides it is very important to rely on Taliban as a power balancing potential in the country; Karzai administration and his oppositions both rely on the Taliban and try to negotiate with them for the next governments elections and no body knows why are the Taliban once again becoming object of attraction for both sides; “Are the people going to face and tolerate a Taliban government for the second time?!” is a fearful question for the people which makes them reluctant and hopeless of a bright future in Afghanistan.

What will happen if the Taliban is going to come on power again?

Considering the extreme definitions and interpretations of the religion by the Taliban, and the contradiction between the life –style of them with the ordinary Afghans, will they match with the standard of a society that the contemporary Afghans expect of?
Will the Afghan people accept impose of the nomadic tribal customs on them by the name of religion?
Will the Afghan people bear beheading or hand cutting of the people by the Taliban?
When the world is going ahead towards progress and development are the Taliban something necessary or needed for the Afghan society?
They are all the questions that Karzai administration has to answer and explain for the nation.

Religious or a totally ethnic war?

Since, Pakistan Intelligence Services had already influenced into Karzai’s administration and into the parliament through Peshawar based Pashtoon Jihadi Leaders, ethnic - tribal leaders of southern and eastern borders of Afghanistan; the results of their influence is more visible day after day when we see, Karzai’s government moves on a parallel path with Pakistan in policies regarding the Taliban, these changes take place when the Pashtoons leaders and Pashtoon Parties in North West Frontier Province of Pakistan got more power than before in the last elections, as well as the Jamiat e Ulama which is actually a Pashtoon lead ethnic, political and religious party and its adherent groups also got remarkable number of seats in the parliament, at once the release of Taliban leaders began in both countries, a cease fire is set up within Pakistan so that the inhabitants of Free Tribal Areas who are mostly Pashtoons would be in peace and the war should be continued only in Afghanistan.

What are the results of Regional Peace Jirga?

Although hundreds of thousands of dollars were spent on a puppet - play game called Regional Peace Jirga, not only nothing useful happened but even also the Taliban’s attacks and threats increased thereafter.

Although the purpose behind that Jirga was the solidarity of the Pashtoons of both sides of the Durand line (Afghan-Pak Borders) but what about the people of both countries who suffer because of them and because of their extremism? What will president Karzai answer to the whole nation in this regard?

The way things go on contemporarily and how Karzai’s administration seems to dance with the music of Pakistani politicians, soon or later a big chaos and may be another ethnic clash is predictable in Afghanistan, and what so ever happen; in any case the innocent people of both sides who are actually forgotten, will be sacrificed in the middle of these political games.

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