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Thread: Pakistan influence on Taliban commanders helped Afghan breakthrough

  1. #226
    Senior Contributor Agnostic Muslim's Avatar
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    An interesting development on the Afghanistan-India side that, if true, should bode well for India-Pakistan relations and in turn potentially increase the chances of a 'proxy-war less' Afghanistan:

    India turns down Afghanistan’s arms plea

    India has turned down Afghanistan’s request for supply of lethal weapons, saying it was neither in a position nor willing to contribute lethal weapons right now, days after Afghan President Hamid Karzai raised the issue with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

    “We are going to help with non-lethal equipment but I don’t think we are either in the position to or willing to contribute lethal weapons right now,” External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid said here.

    Noting that India already supplies important elements of supporting equipment, transportation, which includes helicopters, the minister said “...we think it is not advisable to go beyond that. It is a fragile area, there are stakeholders, there are other people. We don’t want to become part of the problem.”

    During his recent visit to India, Mr. Karzai had handed a “wish list” to Indian leadership seeking greater military and civilian support in the wake of proposed withdrawal of US-led forces from Afghanistan in 2014.

    Mr. Khurshid, in an interview to Straits Times, said there are lots of people who have perceptions about the future of Afghanistan and “if we can help Afghanistan without creating further problems for them, I think that would be a preferred way to do it.”

    He said, “We are in touch with them constantly, and we are committed and have said very categorically... We are not looking at exit routes for ourselves which means we are there to stay for a long term. We are very comforted by the fact that Afghans have confidence in us. We won’t let them down.”

    India turns down Afghanistan
    ======
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  2. #227
    Senior Contributor Agnostic Muslim's Avatar
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    Pakistan quietly preparing for civil war in Afghanistan

    Mariana Baabar
    Thursday, July 11, 2013

    ISLAMABAD: Recognising the realities on the ground leading to fast changing events inside Afghanistan, with no one having a clue to what might happen subsequently after Nato withdraws next year, Pakistan is focusing on how to ‘secure’ its own territory, as it does not rule out a ‘civil war’ once again. It appears to be ready to face a blowback this time around.

    It is for this reason that it realises that it is imperative to focus on a ‘contingency plan’ and avoid a situation where its own fragile internal security receives a further jolt from its western borders.

    “It is difficult to understand and uncertainties surround us —— but if nothing moves we are heading towards a civil war (inside Afghanistan) which we want to avoid. Specially, if all reconciliation efforts do not succeed then there is likelihood of civil war. Then there will be a spillover into Pakistan and this will create its own problems, especially from the Pakistan Taliban”, said diplomatic sources in a meeting with the media here.

    It is for this reason, said one of them, that this contingency plan has to ensure a scenario, which ensures that Pakistan’s own territory is well protected.As prices of property keep rising in areas outside Peshawar in anticipation of what comes next from across the Durrand Line, at this point the diplomat said the government could not contemplate the number of Afghan refugees that could flow in if there is a civil war.

    However, there appeared some room for optimism, the diplomat said even though the Afghan Taliban have closed their Qatar office temporarily to protest demands that they remove a sign which said that the Qatar office was that of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan.

    “This could just be a ‘tactical’ move by the Afghan Taliban to get noticed. The situation was mishandled in Qatar. However, talks can still be held in places other than the Qatar office, and also talks with the Northern Alliance can be held separately”, added the diplomat.

    Another ‘tactical’ move that Pakistan points out is when out of sheer frustration with Hamid Karzai, Obama has threatened considering speeding up the withdrawal of US forces from Afghanistan, ensuring that there would be none left after 2014.

    Refusing to take the bait as Karzai’s rhetoric against Pakistan broke all barriers recently, the diplomat refused to get ruffled and instead said: “While Karzai is trying to become popular (domestically) when he takes on Pakistan and the US, our relations are very critical and Pakistan should look for immediate objectives. Of course the US will be happy to see the Taliban talk the Afghan High Peace Council even if it is under protest”.

    Pakistan is also getting a sense that some Taliban groups are getting tired of the war and efforts should be made to get other such like-minded groups to support them. “Otherwise the hardliners will take over “, he said.

    His comments came at a time when the Pakistani Taliban announced the dismissal of its spokesman, Ehsanullah Ehsan, signaling a further split amongst the militants.

    Pakistan quietly preparing for civil war in Afghanistan - thenews.com.pk
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  3. #228
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agnostic Muslim View Post
    ISLAMABAD: Recognising the realities on the ground leading to fast changing events inside Afghanistan, with no one having a clue to what might happen subsequently after Nato withdraws next year, Pakistan is focusing on how to ‘secure’ its own territory, as it does not rule out a ‘civil war’ once again. It appears to be ready to face a blowback this time around.

    It is for this reason that it realises that it is imperative to focus on a ‘contingency plan’ and avoid a situation where its own fragile internal security receives a further jolt from its western borders.
    Article is silent on the contours of this 'contingency plan'.

    You cannot seal your western borders.

    Your internal security situation ties your hands from moving on either Taliban.

    Further, if the Afghan situation deterioates you are SOL.

    Continuing support of the Afghan Taliban is to continue to endure TTP inroads into Pakistan.
    Last edited by Double Edge; 11 Jul 13, at 16:01.

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    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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  5. #230
    Liberté, Unité, Egalité Senior Contributor Tronic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agnostic Muslim View Post
    An interesting development on the Afghanistan-India side that, if true, should bode well for India-Pakistan relations and in turn potentially increase the chances of a 'proxy-war less' Afghanistan:
    Not much of a "development" considering the fact that India has publicly turned down Afghanistan's requests for weaponry numerous times in the past.

    Is it a 'development' on Pakistan's side that it is finally starting to appreciate this gesture?

    As for your posted article, Pakistan quietly preparing for civil war in Afghanistan; the Afghans are also not being abandoned:

    US exit: India steps up Afghan army training


    NEW DELHI: India is stepping up training of Afghan National Army (ANA) in a major way, even as it also considers supply of military equipment to the fledgling force, in the backdrop of the US-led coalition preparing to withdraw from Afghanistan by 2014.

    Defence ministry sources say "a major Indian effort has been launched for capability enhancement of the ANA" to ensure it can handle the internal security of Afghanistan after the progressive exit of the 100,000 foreign soldiers from there by end-2014.

    India is worried about the stability of the strategically-located Afghanistan after the withdrawal because it is likely to witness a concomitant surge in the activity of the Taliban and its deadly arms like the Haqqani network, which have long worked in league with the Pakistani Army against Indian interests.

    Defence minister A K Antony, in fact, recently warned the Indian military brass to be on guard to tackle "any spillover effect" in Jammu & Kashmir and elsewhere due to Pakistan's continuing support to the Taliban and its inroads into Afghanistan.

    Though India has worked largely on re-construction and developmental projects in the war-ravaged country over the last decade, it is now also boosting the "capacity-building" of ANA. If 574 ANA personnel were trained in different Indian Army establishments in 2012-13, for instance, the number will be "well over 1,000" in 2013-14.

    The training includes counter-terrorism operations, military field-craft, signals, intelligence, counter-IED, information technology, battle-field nursing assistance and, of course, the English language. Afghan personnel are also being "attached" to the Infantry School at Mhow, Artillery School at Devlali and Mechanised Infantry Regimental Centre at Ahmednagar for specialized courses.

    India has also posted some Army officers in the central Asian nation teach basic military and English skills as well as military doctors to help at hospitals in Kandahar and elsewhere. The training of Afghan pilots and technicians in operating Russian-origin Mi-35 helicopter gunships is also on the anvil.

    A joint Indian military-civilian team had also gone to Kabul earlier this month after Afghan President Hamid Karzai submitted "a wish list" of military equipment to India during a visit here in May. The 17-page list includes armoured vehicles, 105mm artillery guns, utility helicopters, trucks, communication equipment and the like.

    Sources said the visit of an ANA "Strategic Group", with 10 high-ranking officers, was also planned to India from September 1 to 13. The delegation will hold talks with the top military brass here, part from visiting military establishments in Pune, Mumbai and Bangalore.

    US exit: India steps up Afghan army training - Times Of India

    The ball is really in Pakistan's court, however it wishes to play things out in Afghanistan. If Pakistan chooses to throw it's weight behind the anti-GoA actors, you will be surprised at how fast those weapon supply lines open up.
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  6. #231
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agnostic Muslim View Post
    There was a similar report on this a few months ago that I posted here: http://www.worldaffairsboard.com/cen...-pakistan.html

    Karzai wants US to protect Afghanistan from Pakistan

    *NYT reports Afghan president also wants US to take direct military action against Taliban havens on Pakistani soil

    ...
    Karzai is right to be afraid. Pakistan would want nothing better than a return to the good old pre 9/11 days when their Taliban dogs ruled the roost in Afghanistan. After the US leaves there is no one to stop the Pakistanis from wreaking havoc inside Afghanistan using the Taliban, except the ANA. Obviously Karzai doesn't fancy the ANA's chances too much.

    India seems to be doing what it can (like training the ANA) without hurting the current Indian government's misguided "Appease Pakistan" policy. It may even reverse its decision not to supply weapons to the ANA in the future if things start going bad. But I doubt it'll be enough. The ANA is not going to become a potent COIN force this easily. It took the IA many years of hard lessons in Kashmir before they got a handle on it. The ANA will have little time and even less resources.
    Last edited by Firestorm; 15 Jul 13, at 08:50.

  7. #232
    Liberté, Unité, Egalité Senior Contributor Tronic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Firestorm View Post
    India seems to be doing what it can (like training the ANA) without hurting the current Indian government's misguided "Appease Pakistan" policy. It may even reverse its decision not to supply weapons to the ANA in the future if things start going bad. But I doubt it'll be enough. The ANA is not going to become a potent COIN force this easily. It took the IA many years of hard lessons in Kashmir before they got a handle on it. The ANA will have little time and even less resources.
    What is the point of India openly arming the ANA when the Afghans already outgun the Taliban? It only gives more ammunition to the anti-Indian hawks in Pakistan to drown out the moderates. If push comes to shove, there is no doubt India will throw it's weight behind the GoA. They have got more than $11 billion USD worth of investments to protect.. but that urgency to arm the ANA is not it's main need.. it's training, especially their junior officers core...
    Last edited by Tronic; 15 Jul 13, at 09:10.
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  8. #233
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tronic View Post
    What is the point of India openly arming the ANA when the Afghans already outgun the Taliban? It only gives more ammunition to the anti-Indian hawks in Pakistan to drown out the moderates. If push comes to shove, there is no doubt India will throw it's weight behind the GoA. They have got more than $11 billion USD worth of investments to protect.. but that urgency to arm the ANA is not it's main need.. it's training, especially their junior officers core...
    The "moderates" in Pakistan (who are as invisible as the Himalayan yeti when it comes to India) seem to get drowned out no matter what we do. But anyway that is beside the point. I'm saying that whether or not we supply arms or don't, it won't matter in the end. The ANA faces the same problem that the IA does in Kashmir. The enemy's bases are on the other side of the border, beyond reach. The IA eventually countered that with excellent HUMINT in the safe-haven areas on the Indian side, fencing the entire LOC, flooding the troublesome area with troops to create a rock solid COIN grid and using tactics refined over several years to flush out the intruders. The ANA can't fence the AF-Pak border. They have less troops and too many Taliban sympathizers on their own side of the border as well. Karzai is right. The only way to deal with the Taliban would have been for the ISAF to go in and destroy their bases inside Pakistan. It is never going to happen now. So things can only get worse.

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