The gathering storm over West Asia

Published on – December 18, 2017 – 7:15 am
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KARACHI: Two important news leaked by the US officials pertained to the West Asia region suggesting that Pakistani and Afghan Taliban had been convinced and plainly told that there is no chance to topple down the Government in Kabul as the US and its allies had decided to remain in Afghanistan till final victory or the convincing defeat of the militants opposing the Kabul Government.


KARACHI: Two important news leaked by the US officials pertained to the West Asia region suggesting that Pakistani and Afghan Taliban had been convinced and plainly told that there is no chance to topple down the Government in Kabul as the US and its allies had decided to remain in Afghanistan till final victory or the convincing defeat of the militants opposing the Kabul Government.

The US Secretary of State had indicated that they might turn their guns towards Pakistan where they had better chances of victory. He suggested a territorial war between Pakistan and its opponents, both the State and non-State actors inside Afghanistan.

Some analysts presume it a declaration of territorial war against Pakistan which the Americans may support the armed militants from Afghanistan or those Pakistani Taliban militants waging a war against Pakistan for the past one decade or more.

The second disturbing message leaked from Washington suggesting that the US President would terminate the nuclear accord reached between Six World Power and Iran. Iran had already announced that such an action from the US President will amount to declaration of war. Iran reserves all rights to defend itself from any unilateral US action while the remaining countries/powers will remain on the sideline.

Western media and analysts had not ruled out the outbreak of hostilities between Iran against its adversaries, led by the United States, for one pretext or the other. They cited the recent level of provocations on both sides intensifying the conflict further.

After completely destroying Iraq, Syria and Libya—the three Arab countries ruled by military dictators in defiance of the US and its western allies, now it is the turn of Iran, analysts predicted.

All the three countries of Iraq, Syria and Libya were implicated and attacked in proxy wars and destroyed ultimately when they entered into a stage of take off in terms of economic development. Now they need more than a century to rebuild their countries from zero needing massive international assistance.

The civil war or infighting is yet to end formally in Iraq, Syria and Libya; it is being further extended to Iran and its neighbourhood by design. To this date Iran had succeeded in containing the crisis more effectively to the frustration of US and its allies both in the West and the East. The Iranian defence forces are in complete control of the situation to this date.

More than 28,000 troops from the United States and its NATO allies are already stationed in Afghanistan while its huge flotilla is in the Gulf region with three aircraft carriers—one each from US, Britain and France—to back up any war efforts in the region.

The US Secretary of State had issued an open threat to Pakistan that the Afghan adversaries may divert their fight and target Pakistan with the support of Pakistani Taliban in the pay of foreign powers.

A large number of Pakistani Taliban had taken refuge in Afghanistan following their defeat in Swat. Many more escaped to Afghanistan following massive military actions in FATA, mainly Northern Waziristan. They are involved in cross border attacks on Pakistani forces and the civilians off and on. They are operating from their Afghan sanctuaries and the Kabul Government contended with a deception that it had no writ in areas where the Pakistani Taliban, including Mulla Fazlullah, enjoying a safe haven.

Analysts believed that the Afghan Government, at the behest of US and NATO Allies, may use the services of Pakistani Taliban in carrying out attacks inside Pakistan. Afghanistan did not recognize Durand Line as the international borders with Pakistan and thus Kabul may make an attempt to restart the so-called ‘Pakhtunistan war’ of 1950s.

Presumably, the US Secretary of State was referring to the territorial war between Pakistan and Afghanistan. In that context, he claimed that Pakistan may lose its territory to Afghans. Implicitly, the US and Afghan Government will support them in their cross border attacks.

The situation is more critical in Iran comparing to Pakistan. The main US target is Iran for its involvement in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Yemen conflicts and in other countries undermining the US interests in the whole region. The US officials and leaders are making Iran the prime target in this crisis considering it a potential threat to security of many countries, mainly the Zionist State of Israel.

There were credible reports that the US President may terminate the Iran nuclear agreement in next few weeks as the US Congress failed to address the Iran nuclear issue to the frustration of President Trump.

In such a case, it will be a direct provocation to Iran increasing tension with the US and also its allies in the Middle East. Iran is the direct target of propaganda warfare of the US. The European Union and other major signatories of the Iran nuclear accord are opposed to President Trump policies and they are on the side line disapproving the plan to drag in Iran into a new conflict or undermine regional security on a bigger scale.

According to the political opponents, Iran had three ‘aircraft carriers’—Hezbollah in Lebanon, Hamas in Palestine and Houthis in the Yemen for its defence in case of any military adventure against Iran.

On the other end, there is Arab NATO under the leadership of Saudi Arab waiting in the wing to settle score with Shia Iran. Pakistan, Turkey and Egypt are also part of the Arab NATO. Many countries, including Pakistan, may not participate any military action against Iran, some observers feel.

On the Pakistan front, the US had already announced to play the ‘Pakhtunistan card’ to deny territory by instigating a war with Afghanistan with the support of US and its allies. India may be playing some role in the Afghan conflict.

When President Trump announced his South Asia Policy, he explicitly inducted India in the conflict forming an alliance with India and Afghanistan defending US interests in the region. Now there is a US, India and Afghanistan alliance in South Asia with the US commitment to stay in Afghanistan till the final victory.

On the national front, the Government is resisting the instant merger of FATA with rest of KPK for the exclusive reason that Afghanistan and the US should not exploit the issue for their advantage and make it a serious point of conflict. FATA is other side of the Durand Line and Afghanistan had refused to accept it as part of Pakistan, Virtually, it remained a ‘no-man’s land’ between Pakistan and Afghanistan and now being made an integral part of Pakistan to the dismay of Afghanistan.

There is no resistance from any side to the demand to merge FATA with the KPK and the Government wants to introduce reforms before the merger making it smooth and orderly.