Pakistani media has started to report the news of Mullah Akhtar Mansour being found on its own soil. Some concerned journalists and intellectuals fear that the incident would be used internationally to defame Pakistan and term it as state harbouring terrorists which would substantiate India’s claim. First it was Osama Bin Laden who was found and killed by Americans in Pakistan and now it’s Mullah Akhtar Mansour. Pakistani journalists are asking why Pakistani military establishment which in true sense runs the government is still holding on to its pro-Taliban strategy. Ironically, such journalists have been termed and stereotyped as ‘traitors’ in Pakistan and have at many times been brutally killed or attacked. Some Pakistani journalists have speculated and have been anticipating further trouble. Appointment of hardliner Maulavi Haibatullah Akhundzada as new Taliban chief and Mansour’s son and Sirajuddin Haqqani (chief of Haqqani network – a prominent faction within Taliban) getting appointment as his deputies, points at big trouble brewing for Pakistan. US have repeatedly strongly and in timely manner warned Pakistan on the Haqqani network. However Pakistan has refused to act in spite of international diplomatic pressures and warnings. US had stated its position of refusal to support of Pakistan, till it starts to effectively act on the Haqqani network.
Pakistani military establishment and ISI have big expectations from Taliban and especially Haqqani Network in toppling of Afghanistan government through their terrorist activities and then gaining indirect control of the government in Kabul. Pakistan is taking extreme risks to support Haqqani network in spite of all the warnings from super power US and all the other international powers. With Akhundzada rejecting the offer of peace talks with Afghan government, it is expected that US could step up attacks on Taliban and particularly Haqqani network hiding in the borders areas of Afghanistan and Pakistan. In such eventuality US attacks could be much more severe than the recent drone attacks.
In the current scheme of events, Pakistani government is buying time to decide its Taliban strategy. The Pakistan response and statement to recent US drone attack has only added to the anger of US, Afghanistan and Iran. This is underlined by the recent cancellation of subsidy on purchase of advanced F-16 fighter jets by the US to Pakistan that resulted in the cancellation of the entire deal. A lame economy making Pakistan to step-back on F-16 deal, and hollow boasting of former Pakistani nuclear scientist Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan threatening India with Pakistani nuclear strike within 5 minutes shows an immature, rogue and evil mentality of Pakistan. It seems Pakistan will have to face the brunt in the near future.
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