In a post I wrote a couple of days ago, I lamented the fact that many Pakistanis think the war we are fighting against militancy in NWFP and Fata is America's war, not ours. As I said, I think this view is wrong-headed, and that these militants present a far graver threat to us than the U.S. Here are two differing perspectives on exactly whose war it is that we are fighting. One is a former head honcho of the ISI and MI from the 80s, the other is a political science professor at LUMS. I'll let you figure out which is which.
The war our security forces are fighting is our war, a war for the future of Pakistan. The alternative of allowing mini religious fiefdoms would be self-destructive. This message has been lost to the public and the politicians due to the strong anti-Musharraf sentiment in the country, and because divisions within the regime are persistently holding the government back from effectively responding to the threat. The state is already late with too little in its hands to counter growing Talibanisation that presents a grave threat to national security._____________________________________________________________________________________
But about one thing I have no doubt in my mind that the troops who are fighting there for the last four years are not fighting this as their war. They believe like I believe that we’ve been pushed into this war, fighting against out own people. And that becomes for the soldier such a huge challenge — fighting against your own people, civilians, citizens, women, children...the moment you pick up weapons against your own people, it is not the morale that counts so much. It is your commitment to that fight, it is your reluctance to fire. Even though you can fire and kill people, you don’t want to.