Maybe the Peshawar jihad massacre really has awakened the Pakistani leadership, and maybe the Pakistanis really will take effective action against the Taliban now. But the jury is still out. After all, Pakistan’s ISI spy service planned jihad terror attacks on U.S. and Israeli consulates in India, and has been involved with other jihad attacks. Is the ISI now neutralized? If not, it will likely prevent any real action against jihad terrorism.
“Pakistan agrees on new antiterrorism plan, pledges to ‘eradicate Taliban,'” RT, December 25, 2014:
Pakistan’s leadership overnight agreed on a comprehensive antiterrorism action plan. They will revamp the criminal system, crackdown on terrorist hideouts, communications and sources of income, and establish a 5,000-strong counter-terrorism force.
The nation is still reeling from the terrorist attack on a Peshawar school on December 16, which claimed 149 lives, 133 of them children. The atrocity underscored the urgent need for the special meeting and the formulation of a political and military strategy.
Officials deliberated overnight, coming to a unanimous agreement on the 20-point National Plan of Action, which Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif called a “defining moment” in the fight against Taliban insurgents. Parts of the new plan have already taken root with the lifting of a six-year moratorium on executions, which is to see 500 prisoners executed in the coming weeks. They are set to continue, as other points are implemented, including a special force of several thousand that will be deployed throughout Pakistan to track down and eradicate the armed insurgents.
Speaking to the nation in a televised address on Wednesday night, following an 11-hour meeting of parliamentary heads, Pakistan’s leader was resolute. He said that the terrorist act had drawn a line between, on the one hand, “coward terrorists”, and on the other, the Pakistani nation, and swore that the groups will be eradicated and not allowed to re-appear.
“The Peshawar atrocity has changed Pakistan. We need to eradicate the mindset of terrorism to defeat extremism and sectarianism.”
“This horrendous attack has shaken the nation… the terrorists struck the future of this country, when they murdered those children,” he added.
According to the strategy, every volatile corner of the country will become a battle ground, especially Baluchistan, Punjab and Karachi, where zero tolerance for terrorism will be given. Baluchistan province borders Afghanistan, and has seen a surge in militant attacks in recent months. Terror has been notoriously difficult to root out in this tribal region, as militants operate across borders, which include southeastern Iran. There is the question of regional independence, but also a fight for supremacy among the many groups operating there. With the new strategy, a program of political reconciliation will take place with the aid of Baluchistan’s regional government. Sharif sees everyone’s participation as the only way to wipe out extremism….