Pakistan balkanized

Pakistan has often been mentioned in the news but since last month the media’s attention on the country has significantly increased.  For that period of time, there has rarely been a day when the media have not brought us important news about Pakistan, but in the meantime they can’t be unimportant – especially since the Taliban have taken control of the Swat Valley and other regions there, as you can see on the map.

What is going on with Pakistan very much resembles the sense of the battles in the Middle Ages and the two world wars, but since its extent is puny compared to these three – people in general are not as concerned. The issue of territorial integrity – and even that of the status quo on the international scene – is at stake. The northwestern part of Pakistan is currently out of Islamabad’s control. Despite the fact that the central government is actually one of the parties that signed the Malakand Accord (read the second part), from which it can be inferred that although the Malakand Division and the district of Kohistan are under Taliban control, these lands are still part of Pakistan, they are actually not part of Pakistan right now. The same interpretation is valid for the bill introducing the Islamic law into the Taliban-controlled Swat Valley. The Pakistani parliament voted for the bill which was later signed into law by President Asif Ali Zardari.

I think that the purpose of the Malakand Accord and the law that introduces Islamic law into the Swat Valley is to hide the reality in the country, namely that Pakistan is currently smaller than what we actually see when we take a look at a map. With or without the approval by Islamabad, Sharia law would be imposed in the Swat Valley anyway.

What is most disturbing is Pakistan’s alleged possession of nuclear weapons. There can hardly be any doubt that the Taliban would want to get access to these weapons, and, provided that they do get access to them, it will allegedly change the world’s status quo and the way foreign policy is being conducted. The truth of the matter is, I don’t think that the Taliban would blink when thinking of using such weapons to reach their goal, that is, to spread radical Islam. Although the Pakistani government claims that it keeps its warheads in a safe and heavily guarded place, it has already proven that its leadership is so weak that some wouldn’t confide much in it. There has also been some miscommunications with the U.S. regarding that war which are doubtfully part of their strategy against the Taliban.

From economic classes, through reading interesting books about life, and based on our real-life experience, we are aware of the existence of tradeoffs:

  • time is irreversible, so if we spend one hour on doing one thing, we have one hour less in doing other things
  • if we spend a particular sum of money on a good or service, we have only the rest of the money that we are having on spending on other goods or services

Therefore, for the sake of not changing the status quo of foreign policy to bad, the U.S., Pakistan and other countries whose interests conflict with those of radical Islam should put as more effort in the fight against the Taliban as they possibly can. There is no time to waste, especially if Pakistan’s warheads are somewhere in or around Islamabad because the capital is dangerously close to the Taliban-controlled provinces (take a look at the map once again).


Filed under Politics

2 responses to “Pakistan balkanized

  1. You are welcome. It’s not just news but my reaction as well. 🙂

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