Pakistan Cannot Defeat the Tehreek-i-Taliban

January 21, 2023 Topic: Pakistan Region: Asia Blog Brand: The Buzz Tags: PakistanAfghanistanTehreek-i-TalibanTTPTalibanTerrorism

Pakistan Cannot Defeat the Tehreek-i-Taliban

Pakistanis should prepare for difficult times ahead.

Finally, the Taliban do not fear border closures with Pakistan, should Pakistan close its borders with Afghanistan to punish the Taliban. The Taliban can rely on Iran and Central Asia for trade. In retaliation, the Taliban will not allow Pakistan to trade with Central Asia through Afghanistan, which will cost Pakistan tens of millions of dollars annually. The illicit drugs, which the Taliban have been trading and trafficking for decades, will still make its way to the international market regardless of the status of the Afghan-Pakistani border.

Pakistanis should prepare for difficult times ahead. There are no easy solutions. The TTP is not going to disappear. For the TTP to deny Pakistan a victory, it only needs to survive. Thus, Pakistanis are advised to accept to live with the TTP for now. In the long run, Pakistan may want to do two things: first, try to steer its society away from extremism so that a lasting and genuine peace may be achieved; second, genuinely engage the Pashtun tribes through their elders and listen to them, without trying to impose anything on them from Rawalpindi.

Arwin Rahi a former adviser to the Parwan governor in Afghanistan. He can be reached at [email protected].

Image: Trent Inness /