After 16 years of war, it is clear that peace would not be restored in Afghanistan by the continuing resort to military forces. Its unity and co-existence that could help the people of Afghanistan achieve durable peace and stability. Neither Kabul and the Coalition, nor the terrorist groups, can impose a military solution on each other. Previously, while addressing a gathering marking International Peace Day, Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Abdullah Abdullah, said the mindset regarding peace needed to be changed and both the warring sides should consider talks and the entire process “a win-win” deal.
The CEO asked neighboring countries to shun their support for terrorist groups and stop investing on fueling the conflict in Afghanistan. There must be end in conflict. Unfortunately, we are wedged with over 20 terrorist groups, and the policy of strengthening one terrorist group against another which is already in conflict, is more deadly that even give births to more terrorist and non state actors in the region. At the same event, High Peace Council (HPC) Chairman, Mohammad Karim Khalili asked militants to renounce violence and adopt the path of peace and talks.
Moreover, he called on militants that fighting has no future and nothing could be achieved through violence. It is pretty obvious war and bloodshed brought nothing but devastation to the Afghan masses, and destroyed all infrastructures of the country. In a country ravaged by three decades of war, peace is a precious commodity. We have grown in violence and instability, and want the next generations to grow up without violence and conflict. Moreover, more important is the human cost.
A large number of Afghans, both ‘military and civilian’ have been killed and wounded since 2001. Noting this, no more room left for the Afghans to bear the brunt of casualties in such a war where no end sees in sight. Unfortunately, there is huge obstacle ahead of peace with militant groups. Pakistan—a terrorist state that supporting and harboring militants is the biggest obstacle in the way of holding peace with Taliban outfit due to huge influence the country has on them. It is a fact that Pakistan created Taliban insurgents. Pakistan authorities already proved their relations with Taliban, and it is like open book, needing no more elaboration. Having this in mind, no strategy, even with more troops, will succeed without reducing Pakistan’s support for Taliban and the affiliated Haqqani network that is responsible for deadliest attacks in Afghanistan.
After more than $30 billion in assistance to Pakistan since 2002, it is understandable that critics of the current United States policy toward Pakistan advocate a more coercive approach such as slapping further conditions on assistance, imposing sanctions or listing Pakistan as a state sponsor of terrorism. We want peace, and the key is with Pakistan as the insurgents are their childbirth. To bring Taliban insurgent to the table of talks, it is crucial for the US administration to put more military and financial pressurize on Pakistan.
Afghanistan Times, September 25, 2017