With a disastrous 2009 finally at an end and what is expected to be an even more disastrous 2010 just getting under way, the US is once again pressuring Pakistan to launch more wars along its northern border.
“Pakistan’s military leadership needs to act against the Quetta Shura and the Haqqani network,” one US official was quoted as saying, referring to militant factions in Balochistan and North Waziristan, two places the US hasn’t yet convinced Pakistan to invade outright.
But with the Pakistani military already committing in excess of 200,000 troops to the various wars along its border with Afghanistan, including a far from completed fight against the South Waziristan agency at America’s behest and mop up operations in the Swat Valley, again at America’s behest, the nation doesn’t have oodles of spare military power to launch new wars.
At present the US strategy appears to be to launch drone strikes at North Waziristan until a reaction is provoked. This was how they ended peace talks in South Waziristan earlier last year, lobbing missiles a day after the Pakistani government inked a ceasefire deal and sparking a battle which has gone on for months. Threats to attack Balochistan have been made as well, but the Pakistani military has warned against such attacks and so far none have been made.
The Haqqani network has been blamed for the this week’s attack on a CIA site along the border in Afghanistan, a site which played a role in the incessant drone attacks. The Quetta Shura is ostenisbly the former Afghan government leadership, which the US claims is operating the entire Afghan insurgency from the Baloch capital, though the Pakistani officials insist the group’s influence and status are dramatically overstated.
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