A Pakistan government spokesperson confirmed there was a cease fire in existence in the fight against al-Qaeda and Taliban forces. “There is no announced cease fire. There is a de facto cease fire between militants and government troops.” During the past week there were secret talks between the Pakistan military leadership and members of militant groups in order to find a way to end the fighting. It is expected as part of the agreement, a tribal council, a jirga, will be formed to work on how to transform the de facto truce into something that would be more permanent.
News of the cease fire aroused the anger of supporters of the murdered Benazir Bhutto. Sheery Rehman, speaking for the Pakistan People’s Party, said: “The government is holding talks with the man who it blamed for the killing opf Benazir Bhutto.”
The central issue is what is behind the decision of al-Qada and Taliban leaders to enter into truce talks with the Pakistan army. There is no doubt leaders like Baitullah Mehsud have not abandoned their desire to transform Pakistan into an Islamic Republic. Are they temporarily ending fighting in an effort to regroup? Mehsud is too ruthless and crafty to simply end fighting unless he has a hidden reason.
Posted in Asia, Human Rights, Islam, Military, Muslims, Peace, Politics, War, World News
Tagged Bhutto killing, cease-fire, Pakistan, PPP
The confusing twisting tale of Pakistan continues as the Taliban stormed a fort on the frontier and allegedly killed 15 Frontier Corps(FC) soldiers and captured about 24. A source told the Lahore Daily Times that seven of the captives has their throats slit by Taliban victors. The Pakistan army claims it killed forty militants and that 15 men escaped from Sararougha Fort with several others still missing. On the political scene the situation is also confusing. Pakistan Peoples Party leader Asif Ali Zardari insisted there would be no power sharing with President Musharraf and his party intended to gain victory in the upcoming election despite difficulties placed in their path by a corrupt government. He refused to take the “crumbs of power from a dictator’s table. We will take our rightful share of power uner the constitution after a free and fair election.” When asked if he would cooperate with the Musharraf government after the election, Zardari responded it was a hypothetical question that could not be answered at the present time. Nazwaz Sharif, head of the PML-Q who agreed to work with the PPP urged creation of a national unity government with Musharraf.
At this point, no one knows what will happen in Pakistan other than the apparent certainty fighting will increase against the growing power of the Taliban and al-Qaeda. The political situation will most probably end in some sort of compromise government which entails working with President Musharraf. The more important factor is increased attacks upon government positions in northwest regions by Taliban and al-Qaeda forces. Pakistan created these forces to fight India and to take over Afghanistan and now must live with its own legacy of violence which has turned upon its own creators.
Posted in Belgium, Human Rights, Military, Peace, Politics, War, World News
Tagged Musharraf, Northwest fighting, Pakistan, PPP, Taliban
The old adage politics makes strange bed fellows apparently has some validity in Pakistan where the Pakistan People’s Party of assassinated leader Benazir Bhutto indicated it might cooperate with President Musharraf once the elections are over. Pakistan Peopole party spokesperson, Farhattullah Babar said, “all options are open.. these bridge which we will corss when they come.” He forsaw the need for a coalition of moderate forces in Pakistant to handle terrorism and militants which thus might require the PPP to cooperate with Musharraf who does fall into the category of a secular leader. In the meantime, Taliban leaders announced that 300 men had been assigned the task of killing prominent political and religious leaders over the coming months.
The politics of politics invariably brings out the pragmatic aspects of human life. Some leaders of the PPP are prepared to go to bed with the man they believe may have had a hand in the killing of their leader. But, she is dead and they are alive. So, on with the march to power.