Need for wartime planning


And what lack of it can do


While the military push into NW, finally, is much appreciated, there are some questions that must be answered for the public to understand the complete picture. Otherwise, there might be problems keepings hearts and minds on the right side ‘all the way’. One, the KPK government’s anger at being left out of the loop is understandable, but its allegation that the government has not prepared for the war’s spillover, especially large scale dislocation, is very serious. As argued repeatedly in this space, local problems are the most important to address. The people of Waziristan will bear the worst of the operation, and every step should be taken to ease their suffering. And lack of regard of this particular problem, especially after the SW experience of ’09, is unforgivable. Even if the centre failed, as usual, and the KPK government was clueless about the operation, it should still have made contingency arrangements. There is a war going on after all.

Two, what is the post-sweep vision? Will the military continue filling political vacuums that follow anti-insurgency operations or will the government play a proactive role for once? The army must not be left to handle an administrative black hole that the government is unable to fill. Otherwise, like previous operations, its attention will remain divided, allowing militants to squeeze through agencies. Three, what of urban centres, especially across Punjab and Sindh, where the Taliban have spread? Ominously, these are also areas where now estranged intelligence proxies, the Punjabi Taliban, are poised for blowback operations. And analysts have already begun questioning whether Zarb-i-Azb is really a fight-to-the-last-Talib or simply a cleanse-and-secure operation, meant to secure the tribal area and take control of the border. Surely, so long as the lashkars andjaishs, and their madrassas, remain, so will the insurgency, in one form or another.

And four, are the government and military really on the same page, or are rumours of an ultimatum and a unilateral strike true? Without these answers, the government will show an undesirable degree of unpreparedness for what is without doubt an existential crisis.


  1. WAR WAR WAR ! WHY MANY PAKISTANIS ARE NAAPAK DOLLARGULAMS ? ISLAM= PEACE NOT PIECES.. WAIT- are shias NOT muslims then -shias tortured terroised killed AD INFINITUM by sunnis YEJIDS 1495 yrs ..what the hell !! whats in a name ? what does PAK-ISTAN really stand for ? MAD BAD MULLAS DRIVEN ?

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