The Best Dreams Are Insane Dreams « The Washington Independent
It’s easy and cheap to grouse about Pakistan’s “will” to confront extremism in the tribal areas, but this Washington Post piece about how the Pakistani military is taking its sweet time to conduct its much-boasted-about military offensive in the tribal areas contains quite a dash of cold water:
“It’s an insane dream to expect anything different from the Pakistani government,” said Ali Wazir, a South Waziristan native and a politician with the secular Awami National Party. “The Taliban are the brainchildren of the Pakistan army for the last 30 years. They are their own people. Could you kill your own brother?”
Richard Holbrooke, the U.S. special envoy, to Pakistan and Afghanistan, has a well-constructed quote that makes Pakistani delays in launching the offensive seem like smart counterinsurgency measures:
Although Holbrooke said it could be beneficial to have simultaneous offensives — the U.S. Marines on the Afghanistan side of the border and the Pakistani army in the tribal regions to the east — the greater concern is unfinished business elsewhere. “Why would I push them to start an offensive when they have 2 million people they have to protect first?” Holbrooke said.
Savvy diplomatic statement, to be sure, but if Wazir is right, Holbrooke is deluding himself.