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Pakistan Army Claims Taliban Defeated

Updated on March 1, 2009

Is General Tariq Khan, delusional?

 Pakistan's army General Khan claims that the Taliban in Bajaur (Bajur) and Mohmand have lost, have been defeated, and their command apparatus internally dismantled. This is the result of an Pakistani Army offensive that lasted six months and cost 97 Kia and 400 Wia for them, while killing 1800 Taliban.

General Khan indicates that the road networks are now free of terrorists, making it impossible for them to move freely. However, as before many times, the Pakistanis have won tactical victories in Khyber, Swat, Kohat, Arakzai, and North and South Waziristan, only to be taken again by the Taliban when the Army left. Already, Khan is saying he will withdraw troops from these "cleaned" areas! In Mohmand, the army commander there indicated that, "the militants are running away".

The Pakistani Army continues to fight the Taliban as if they were a conventianal force. Controlling the roads within a district is only but one step to winning. The areas are heavily mountainous making it ideal for the taliban to retreat and withdraw into their protected areas created by the terrain. They know the Pakistani Army will not go after them here and also know they will withdraw and leave only a security force. All they need to do is wait. Time is on their side because they fight out of deep faith. With the Pakistani Army, time means money. The costs to have a military operation, the costs to garrison it. The Taliban is a foot army, not vehicles and tanks. They like roads, but they have proven over and over, they don't need them, so controlling the roads is good for politics and news but against a terrorist group, meaningless. One has to take the fight to their hiding places in the mountains.

The Taliban may have taken a hit, if they did indeed lose 1800 men, but they will come back and infiltrate the society and government until it all starts over again with them taking control of towns etc. This did happen to the US troops in Vietnam, they would usually win the battles but the political will did not always support the troops. The US would control the roads but was unable to always control other areas of the same province, so the VC and NVA infiltrated and won the hearts of the people, just like the Taliban. This same thing happened with the French in Vietnam in the 50s.

Surely, the Pakistani leaders must know this. They should remain in full force of any district they have secured, but maybe this is simply not possible due to manpower and costs. If that is the case, the handwriting is on the wall.

History, especially, military history, often repeats.  

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    • profile image

      tariq 

      9 years ago

      How is Dad's Army now my friend???

    • LondonGirl profile image

      LondonGirl 

      9 years ago from London

      I know the UN is doing as much as it can, but their activities are very limited by the security situation in both the NWF and Afghanistan, sadly.

    • perrya profile imageAUTHOR

      perrya 

      9 years ago

      To fight a guerilla type war there has to be a fine balance with aid to the area and a military presence to keep the enemy away. The Pakistani army should not withdraw forces from an area they have cleaned. Once the area is secured, the Un or other aid agencies there should establish centers in the area to help those with basics. Jobs are important because idle people are prime recruits for terrorists, just read my Mexican drug war. There, you have out of work mexican americans buying weapons for the cartel legally and getting paid $40 per weapon. Easy money. Guerilla war is by far the most complicated type of war to fight and the US learned the hard way in Vietnam.

    • countrywomen profile image

      countrywomen 

      9 years ago from Washington, USA

      LG- I feel trying to go to the root cause will help in the long run hence who are these extremist organizations trying to recruit. Somebody who is poor, uneducated, unemployed and has been personally wronged (loss of family member or homes). Hence food, health, education and alternate employment opportunities may help  them from joining terrorist groups. But it requires lots of dedication from many people to achieve the results.

      Actually UN is trying both in NWFP and Afghanistan (in spite of great personal risk) but still it alone may not be able to achieve the desired results as quickly as we want. But in recent times some progress in the plight of woman in Afghanistan has been noticed. Another thing I have seen is that "bad" news gets way too much publicity and the good things that are happening at the ground level is often ignored by the media. If more people see some results are possible then more will join to volunteer with their time, money and efforts to achieve those noble objectives. 

    • LondonGirl profile image

      LondonGirl 

      9 years ago from London

      hi CW - "But do you think if UN and other aid organizations stepped up the efforts in education, health and food supplies then the hold of Taliban in those areas would weaken."

      In the present circumstances, I fear, it's just too dangeours in the NWF outside Peshawar (and even there, you'd have to be careful)

    • LondonGirl profile image

      LondonGirl 

      9 years ago from London

      I fear you've given me a hub idea or two (-:

    • countrywomen profile image

      countrywomen 

      9 years ago from Washington, USA

      Perrya- I read this "The Pakistani Army continues to fight the Taliban as if they were a conventianal force." and I remembered once somebody said that we can't have a geneva convention with those who believe in guerilla warfare.

      But do you think if UN and other aid organizations stepped up the efforts in education, health and food supplies then the hold of Taliban in those areas would weaken. Is there only a military solution to any conflict? I agree we can't totally dismantle military engagement but mostly I feel hate begets hate. There should be some other alternatives to fight this battle which is mostly now being fought in the battlefield.

    • perrya profile imageAUTHOR

      perrya 

      9 years ago

      of course, Home Guard. Did not know it by Dad's Army. I find that whole plan, invading England quite interesting. The german operational plan was Sealion. i think the only thing that stopped it was a lack of sea going vessels and the fact that the RAF did not break.I doubt if it would have been very successful.

    • LondonGirl profile image

      LondonGirl 

      9 years ago from London

      No, not a trick question at all.

      After the War started, the Local Defence Volunteers (LDV)  was formed to organise local defence and, if there had been an invasion, guerilla warfare and resistence.

      As a result of the British inability to take things seriously, it was soon nick-named the "look-duck-vanish army". So they renamed it. "Home Guard" was the official name, but as it was mostly staffed by older ex-soldiers (and boys too young to join up), it was soon universally known as "Dad's Army". The Powers-That-Were couldn't be bothered to change the name again

      There was a sitcom made over about 12 years, featuring a Home Guard unit led by a local bank manager, called "Dad's Army". Although the series ended about the time I was born, it's been shown over and over again, and most British people are entirely familiar with it.

      The music at the beginning and end was written for the programme, and was, I think, supposed to be a gentle dig at war time songs. The lyrics I quoted above are from that song:

      Who do you think you are kidding Mr. Hitler?

      If you think we’re on the run...

      We are the boys who will stop your little game,

      We are the boys who will make you think again.

      'Cause, who do you think you are kidding Mr. Hitler?

      If you think old England’s done.

      Mr Brown goes off to town on the 8:21,

      But he comes home each evening and he’s ready with his gun.

      So, who do you think you are kidding Mr. Hitler?

      If you think old England’s done.

       

    • perrya profile imageAUTHOR

      perrya 

      9 years ago

      Not sure what you mean by that name. Sound's like a trick question. Is it?

    • LondonGirl profile image

      LondonGirl 

      9 years ago from London

      have you ever seen "Dad's Army"?

    • perrya profile imageAUTHOR

      perrya 

      9 years ago

      yes, indeed......Churchill was one tough nut!

    • LondonGirl profile image

      LondonGirl 

      9 years ago from London

      Reminds me of the "Dad's Army" song - "Who do you think you are kidding Mr. Hitler / If you think old England's done"

    • perrya profile imageAUTHOR

      perrya 

      9 years ago

      well, I am sure it is for the media , but they cannot really be serious...

    • Trsmd profile image

      Trsmd 

      9 years ago from India

      I think this is the Best Joke of the Year..

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