Bad relations between Afghanistan and Pakistan over the Durand Line have been used by India to keep a viable threat of a possible second front against Pakistan as a counter to the indigenous uprising in Kashmir, says Ikram Sehgal.
The US-Taliban talks are currently indicating towards the formation of a national interim government. However, this formation could still see some roadblocks. The Afghan security establishment, in collusion with “spoilers”, could push back against the peace talks.
The slowest snowfall in decades and a continuing insurgency have led to Afghanistan facing the worst drought this century, with little capability to respond.
One Pakistani analyst suspects double game by US special envoy for Afghanistan, Zalmay Khalizad in the ongoing efforts for lasting peace in Afghanistan. Here is his open letter to President Trump.
Pakistan has limited cards to play but if played nattily, it has a chance of resetting its relationship with Afghanistan. With India and Iran thinking of establishing links with the Taliban, Pakistan must maintain its watch.
In short, Pakistan’s diplomacy is on trial for sure; it, of course, should help its neighbors and also work together with the US for peace in Afghanistan. But one would hope – that for the short-term objective of accommodating US plans – it does not walk into a booby trap in an already explosive situation.
The message from Beijing, Moscow, Turkey, and Tehran, as well as most central Asian Republics, is loud and clear; Pakistan alone cannot be held responsible for the problem as well as the resolution.
Defeating terrorism in Afghanistan needs every stakeholder to put aside differences, and acknowledge that the current situation is a danger to all.
After large snowfall in 2017, this year Afghanistan has experienced the reverse, with the lowest snowfall in years, sparking concerns that the country may be heading towards drought conditions.
As long as the US remains disinclined to demonstrably leverage its relations with India for a matter-of-fact dialogue between the two south Asian neighbors, peace in Afghanistan will also remain a distant dream – no matter how much pressure Nicholson or his political bosses in Washington ratchet up on Pakistan, claims one Pakistani analyst.