Drone strikes:

From available reports it appears that the war on terror in the border areas of Pakistan is all set to intensify in the coming weeks. Its outcome cannot be predicted at this stage because the government’s strategy and its war aims are still not sharply defined. The only factor that seems to be certain at the moment is that the American policy of carrying out drone strikes against suspected terrorist targets inside Fata is to continue. Whether the Pakistan government wants to go along or not, it has to be prepared for a protracted war that will be stepped up at America’s bidding.

The London-based International Institute of Strategic Studies has also confirmed that insurgents now roam freely on the Pakistan-Afghanistan border and have expanded the area of their activity. As a result violence has also escalated. How is Pakistan trying to counter the challenges it faces from all sides?

The government claims that three ‘D’s mark its policy, namely, dialogue, development and deterrence. If this is really so, it doesn’t appear to be working. What is missing is coordination with others who are also supposedly our partners in the war on terror. What is needed is a coordinated and integrated approach. Needless to say, this must be pinned together with a broad political consensus on what we hope to achieve. — Dawn (Pakistan)