Pakistan Real Estate Times - Pakistan Property News

Full Version: US frustrated as Pakistan abandons military offensive in S Waziristan
You're currently viewing a stripped down version of our content. View the full version with proper formatting.
LAHORE: Despite strenuous entreaties by top US officials, the government has abandoned plans to mount a military offensive against the group responsible for a two-year campaign of suicide bombings across the country, TIME magazine reported. Although the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) has been in disarray since a missile strike from a CIA-operated drone killed the group’s former chief Baitullah Mehsud on August 5, the military has concluded that a ground attack on its strongholds in South Waziristan would be too difficult. The military has choked off the main roads leading out of South Waziristan, and the country’s fighter jets have been pounding targets from the air (an operation Islamabad insists it will continue). But that falls short of the military campaign the US desires. Instead, the government is hoping to exploit divisions within the TTP to prize away some factions, while counting on the CIA’s drones to take out Baitullah’s successors. US counter-terrorism officials worry that a failure to capitalise on the post-Baitullah confusion within the TTP will allow its new leader, Hakeemullah Mehsud, to consolidate his position and reorganise the organisation. Officials in Washington say special envoy Richard Holbrooke and NATO commander Gen Stanley McChrystal have both pressed Islamabad to strike while the iron is hot. But after initial promises to launch a ground offensive in South Waziristan, the government has backed off. A top general, Nadeem Ahmed, recently said preparation for such an operation could take up to two months. Now, there will be no ground assault at all, according to a senior politician known to have strong military ties; instead, the politician says the military will try and buy off some TTP factions through peace deals. This alarms US officials, who point out that Taliban leaders have previously used peace deals to expand their influence. “Such deals have been abject failures that, at the end of the day, have made the security situation in parts of Pakistan worse. Why the Pakistani government keeps returning to this strategy is a mystery,” says a US counter-terrorism official. daily times monitor
Reference URL's