DoD Report: Pakistan is Reason for Afghanistan Stalemate by Robert Cassidy - Real Clear Defense
The latest U.S. Department of Defense Report on “Enhancing Security and Stability in Afghanistan” reiterates that Pakistan’s sanctuary, support, and employment of insurgents and terrorists is a strategic impediment to ending that war well, or to ending it at all. The Pentagon is now preparing to send about four thousands more troops. A number of Coalition partners will probably send a commensurate number of additional troops. More troops and more actions will build advisory capacity and thus improve the Afghan security forces capacity. More capacity will, in turn, gain some tactical and operational momentum vis-à-vis the Taliban, the Haqqani network, and other Islamist militants that benefit from Pakistan’s support and sanctuary.
But more action and more troops in and of themselves will not gain strategic momentum. Strategic momentum requires a marked change in Pakistan’s strategic behavior. That requires a strategy which includes more regional cooperation and a much more coercive strategic approach to curb Pakistan’s machinations. This requires a sea change in strategic thinking to shock, compel, and instill fear in Pakistan’s security establishment to break it out of its ingrained strategic-cultural pathologies. Pakistan’s duplicitous incubation and export of proxy terrorists and insurgents is the most significant obstacle to peace in Afghanistan and South Asia.
Pakistan has nurtured and relied on a host of Islamist insurgents and terrorists for decades. The Inter-Services Intelligence Directorate (ISI) has maintained links between Al Qaeda, its longtime Taliban allies, and a host of other extremists inside Pakistan. It is only possible for Pakistan to become a non-pariah state among the community of states and a helpful partner to the Coalition and the U.S. if it significantly modifies its regional conduct and ceases its support of proxy terrorists and insurgents. America has doled out more than $33 billion in carrots to Pakistan in exchange for Pakistan’s treachery since 9/11. This miscarriage of trust and reliability is abhorrent…