RealNews

Pakistani Army must go through the Pashtuns

This spring, the dry mountains of Shikai were showered with rose petals to celebrate a truce between the Pakistani military and local pro-Al Qaeda militants. Together, they pledged to cleanse the tribal area of South Waziristan of all foreign militants. Two months later, the floral confetti has turned to bullets and bombs. Jets and helicopter gunships circle in the sky, and militants on the ground vow to fight a jihad against the “traitorous” Pakistani Army.Once a fight between Western democratic values and militant Islam, the war on terror along the Afghan-Pakistani border has become something murkier, complex, and ancient. Now, it’s tribal. The rules of this war are a far cry from the easy slogans of “you’re either with us or against us.” Indeed, Pashtun history is filled with heroes who played both sides for the benefit of tribe, family, and honor. The latest such figure is tribal leader Naik Mohammad. Before being killed this month, Mr. Mohammad had cut deals with both his Al Qaeda guests and the Pakistani military trying to evict them. That it was the military who ultimately got double-crossed displays how much the antiterror coalition still must learn about how to influence the tribes who shelter top Al Qaeda leaders. Full Story

OODA Analyst

OODA Analyst

OODA is comprised of a unique team of international experts capable of providing advanced intelligence and analysis, strategy and planning support, risk and threat management, training, decision support, crisis response, and security services to global corporations and governments.