Surgical Treatment of Terrorism
By Ali Sukhanver
For the last many weeks, it has been a very popular statement of different politicians, defense analysts and of different TV anchors that the Operation Zarb-e-Azb in Pakistan is reaching its climax. This statement gives an impression that the menace of terrorism has been completely uprooted from the Pakistani society and that there is no more danger from their side now. But the fact of the matter is that the Operation Zarb-e-Azb still needs to be carried on for a long time. Everywhere terrorism is the name of a disease which could never be treated with simple medicines; it always ends up in a surgical treatment followed by a long term follow-up. And in most of the cases this disease adopts the form and shape of a malignant tumor which ultimately becomes a serious threat to life if not properly taken care of. In short one has to be very much offensive in dealing with the menace of terrorism but at the same time it does not mean that the scourge of terrorism is incurable.
Just cast a look at the devastated and ruined lands of Sri Lanka a few years back. The enchanting island of waters and mountains had been the ever-worst victim to the terrorist activities of the LTTE for about three decades. The LTTE began conducting extensive and deadly terrorist attacks against the Sri Lankan government and civilians in 1983. As a result of this brutal terrorism more than 80000 people lost their lives and thousands got seriously injured. The LTTE terrorists pioneered the use of suicide bombings with the help of women and children suicide bombers. The LTTE terrorists did all they could do to destroy the whole of the social structure of the Sri Lankan society. From the ordinary common people to the political leaders, from government officials to the representatives of other countries posted there in Sri Lanka, journalists, Army officers, in short no one was safe at the hands of the Tamil fighters. Under the umbrella of moral and financial support of India, the LTTE’s terror war continued for more than 26 years. At last in May 2009 the Sri Lankan army succeeded in putting an end to this war by killing the LTTE’s main leader Prabhakaran. Talking of the 1983 riots in Sri Lanka, Shenali D Waduge, a world known Sri Lankan analyst on strategic affairs says, “The 1983 July riots said to have been caused as a response to the LTTE killing of 13 soldiers remains a very contentious topic even 30 years later. It was the first time that a large number of military personnel had been slaughtered in one go and was a shock to not only the families of the deceased but a shock to the military itself. Aware of its own limitations in military hardware Sri Lanka was unaware that India had not only been training LTTE and other militant groups but had also been arming them and financially supporting them as well. This means that whatever weapons, ammunition and even LTTE targets had to have been with the explicit knowledge and even instructions of India and its intelligence agencies which were handling them.”
Now same is the situation the people of Pakistan have been passing through for a long time. Whether it is the so-called sectarian blood-shed or suicide attacks on innocent citizens or the brutal slaughtering of the children at the Army Public School Peshawar or the so-called separatist movement in Baluchistan, the Law Enforcement Agencies of Pakistan have solid proofs of Indian interference in all these incidents. So many times these proofs have been presented to the Indian authorities but these authorities never showed a positive response to these proofs. Instead of looking into the matter sympathetically, the Indian authorities have always showed a very soft corner for the terrorists involved in terrorist activities in Pakistan. A recent example in this regard is of granting bail to Swami Aseemanand, the main culprit behind the Samjhota Express tragedy. This culprit had openly admitted that he was involved not only in the Samjhota Express tragedy but also in so many of other terrorist activities. Samjhota Express was bombed in February, 2007 resulting in the death of 42 people. The government of Pakistan and the Military authorities of Pakistan are very well aware of the horrible reality that the terrorists working in Pakistan are enjoying a very strong support and favour from the countries hostile to Pakistan. Terrorism in Pakistan is not the handiwork of a small group of people; it is something far more than that. Recent suicide-attack on Col. (R) Shuja Khanzada is a proof that the terrorists need to be dealt with more ruthless hands. By talking of putting an end to the Operation Zarb-e-Azb, we would do nothing but encourage and support the terrorists.