President Ashraf Ghani addressed the nation on Monday after a spate of deadliest attacks unleashed the floodgates of death and terror. The takeaways of his address were impressive particularly his statement that as the Peshawar school carnage turned out a game changer for Pakistan, the recent Kabul attacks that killed scores of civilians in Shah Shaheed had also changed the face of militancy for Afghanistan. One can easily sum up from what he said that Mr. Ghani’s patience has caved in, yet at the same time his warning to Pakistan is much cautious. Though he touched upon the Peshawar school carnage however his reaction and that of his war cabinet was not as much fast and furious as was the reaction of Islamabad over Peshawar school bloodbath. Pakistan’s army chief visited Kabul so fast that even his Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif didn’t know where his General is. Within no time there was a storm of criticism in Pakistani media against Kabul even though they didn’t had even a slightest evidence of Afghanistan’s involvement in the attack let alone substantial evidence to link the Peshawar school mayhem to Kabul. If someone is to encapsulate Ghani’s address, it is a threat to Pakistan in a cautious tone but will Islamabad respond to his voice and concerns? Ghani said that Pakistan needs to have the same policy definition in regard to terrorism for Afghanistan as it has for itself. Had Pakistan the same policy, there wouldn’t have been the use of a single bullet. By taking a cautious and diplomatic tone, perhaps, here Ghani deliberately is trying to forget how Pakistan sheltered Mullah Ghani Baradar, who is currently in Pakistan’s custody, and waged a war of insurgency in Afghanistan through him. Mullah Baradar was the first one among the toppled Taliban leaders who ran to Pakistan and waged a war against Kabul from there. President Ghani must know that when Afghan officials visited Pakistan during the government of ex-President Hamid Karzai, they were allowed to meet Baradar but he was lying unconscious as he was given a huge dose of tranquilizers. Unfortunately, when Kabul is burning our political leaders are hurling cautious threats instead of coming out fully.
We all know what Pakistan thinks and wants. Therefore, it should not be a matter of concerns for our leadership rather they must be concerned about what Afghans think and want. Though, President Ghani’s statement has won millions of hearts yet at the same time, the situation on the ground is quite conducive for moving ahead with action-plans. Pakistan should not be given the chance to cover its policy of aggression with peace rhetoric. The Afghan team expected to visit Islamabad on Thursday to take up the issue of terrorists’ sanctuaries in Pakistan should adopt a clear stance. The delegation must demand handover of the Taliban or elimination of all those who are killing Afghans while sitting in Pakistan. Afghanistan must also drag some of the ex-ISI’s officials who publicly support the Afghan Taliban. Some of the ISI’s officials are now retired and legally they cannot have any sorts of contacts with the Taliban yet despite that they are at it.
In addition to that Kabul should also lodge protest in the UN Security Council against Pakistan for sponsoring terrorist organizations, if Islamabad does not take practical steps to eliminate the militants in the coming few weeks. Besides that the Afghan Taliban leaders should be brought into the international court of justice for committing war crimes in Afghanistan.