News You Really Need To See: “In Shift, Pakistan Vows to Target All Insurgents”

“In Shift, Pakistan Vows to Target All Insurgents”

The Wall Street Journal, July 7, 2014, p.A5

Pakistan will go after all militant groups in its unfolding operation in the North Waziristan tribal area, including insurgents who target neighboring Afghanistan, in what would be a major shift in policy, the defense minister said.  The minister, Khawaja Muhammad Asif, told The Wall Street Journal that the military offensive in North Waziristan would target the Haqqani network, a group affiliated with the Afghan Taliban that has been based in the tribal area for more than three decades. … Some Pakistani officials in the past have described the Afghan Taliban and some other jihadist groups as ‘good,’ while the government combats the more extreme ‘bad’ militant organizations that turned on the Pakistani state. … But Mr. Asif insisted Pakistan has changed its policy.  ‘They are all bad Taliban. There are no more good Taliban,’ he said.  Islamabad is trying to persuade Kabul to attack Pakistani Taliban groups that have taken refuge in eastern Afghanistan before and during the North Waziristan operation.  Afghan authorities have indicated they won’t act unless they see Pakistan fighting Kabul’s enemies, such as the Haqqanis.”

Quickie Analysis:  If true, finally, recognition that this is a shared problem that requires a coordinated solution.

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