By Syed Atiq ul Hassan, Sydney, Australia;
If the world believes what Indian media and government are alleging that Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) of Pakistan has been behind the victory and ruling of Taliban in Afghanistan, then basically it proves that Indian strategy and planning in Afghanistan have failed. India has spent billions of dollars in Afghanistan in the name of developing the infrastructure of Afghanistan and helping the US-Allied forces to build and train Afghan forces in the last 20 years. India had assured the US and European nations that India would quash the Taliban, other freedom fighters and back the US-made government in Afghanistan.
India has no border linked with Afghanistan. China can be the route for India to go to Iran, Tajikistan, and then to Afghanistan but India does not have friendly relations with China, and it was too costly. Therefore, India tactically increased bilateral relations with Iran and signed an accord with Iran in 2016, in the name of helping Iran to refurbish the Chabahar Port and reconstruct the 600-meter-long container handling facility. In return, they asked Iran to give India access to Afghanistan. In fact, India’s real plan was to create instability and spread terrorism in Pakistan by sending insurgents and terrorists from Afghanistan to the Northern Territory of Pakistan. For this reason, India established more than 20 new consulate and Indian agents’ offices in different Afghan provinces and permanently stationed RAW-trained terrorism operators in Afghanistan.
Indian intelligence agency RAW and Indian foreign offices in Afghanistan established training camps in Afghanistan alongside the border with Pakistan and in provinces close to the Pakistan border. In these camps, Indian military officers and RAW Agents trained the terrorist groups including Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), Balochistan Liberation United Front (BLUF), Balochistan Liberation Army (BLA), and ISIS terrorists. Bomb blasts and terrorism through insurgents became a daily incident in the last 20 years in Pakistan, especially in Peshawar, Quetta, and Karachi. Pakistan army launched heavy military operations in troubled areas but could not fully control them because the insurgency was continued from Afghanistan by Indian RAW operators. Pakistan raised the issue to the world, but the world powers were not interested to listen as they had a deal with India to bring stability to Afghanistan.
Last 20 years it was a highly crucial and challenging task for the Pakistan army and the ISI. They smartly worked the plan at multiple fronts:
- Building trust and mutual benefits with the neighboring countries and alongside Afghanistan that is with Iran, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Turkey.
- Convince China to support Pakistan on their strategy to bring peace in Afghanistan, kick out the US-led forces and India.
- To bring peace to Afghanistan, establish a stable government in Afghanistan acceptable to the majority of Afghans, and pull out of US & NATO forces to hand over rule of Afghanistan to the most powerful group which is the Taliban. In this regard, Pakistan is the only country that could bring the Taliban to the negotiation table and workout transfer of power peacefully to the Taliban and obtain a guarantee from the Taliban to work with the rest of the world.
The US policymaker, administration, pentagon, and the current US President Joe Biden are not foolish to quickly surrender in front of the Taliban. It all came through a strategic deal with Pakistan. The US and its allies have no choice except to give the task to the Pakistan army and ISI. Pakistan has the longest border with Afghanistan. Pakistan played a key role during the war against Russia by Mujahideen in the 1980s. Pakistan trained Mujahideen. Pakistan has decades-old deep routed relations with the Mujahideen and their next-generation Taliban. There is no doubt that Pakistan’s ISI has historical relations with the Taliban.
The leaders of the Taliban who were involved in negotiation with the US in Doha, Qatar were in Pakistan’s custody. Hence, Pakistan released them when the time came and negotiations between the leaders of the Taliban and the US were arranged in Doha. Pakistan smartly conditioned that it will not be the party in the negotiation between the Taliban and the US. It is simple to understand that Pakistan brought the Taliban to the table, therefore, Pakistan did not need to be present in the negotiation. Whereas, India tried to be a party in these negotiations but Pakistan refused Indian presence as they did not have a valid argument and ability to be present themselves. The US was very keen to make deal with the Taliban and pull out their forces as soon as possible. The US agreed not to involve India in this negotiation and had a valid reason that Pakistan is also not a party in the negotiation. This was the first shock to India and a great and smart move by Pakistan.
These negotiations went more than a year where every aspect of pulling out of US-NATO forces, the peaceful transfer of power, and the establishment of the Taliban Government was decided.
The world is surprised that how quickly the US surrendered and withdrew forces in days. In fact, the US and NATO strategic planners have been working on this for the last 10 years. The job has been successfully delivered by ISI that brought a great victory for Pakistan and embarrassment and defeat for India on the Western border(Afghanistan).
ISI realized India has planned tactfully and gained the trust of US and European nations in Afghanistan so that behind-the-scenes India can launch the war against Pakistan through terrorism using the 700-kilometer-long western border of Pakistan with Afghanistan.
ISI worked in the past with the Pentagon and CIA unlike with RAW. Therefore, the US understood the strength of ISI and its relationship with the Taliban.
Indian media can still make sizzling and thrilling stories and the Indian government can claim whatever they want to, but the world is silent and praising Pakistan. No countries are blaming Pakistan or ISI except India and the reasons are now obvious to the world. Pakistan is turned out to be the most important country in the region now. The US Secretary and foreign ministers of Western countries are visiting Pakistan, deciding the fate of Afghanistan under the Taliban’s rule.
What goes around comes around. The Indian government and its agency RAW have to understand now why is ISI ranked as the number ONE agency in the world. ISI launched operations patiently but successfully.
The surprise visit of ISI Chief Lieutenant General Faiz Hameed to Kabul before the official announcement of the Taliban’s government should make it clear to India that ISI is working in forming the Taliban’s government with the consent of the US and NATO forces.
India must understand that their game in Afghanistan is finished now. Indian media crying and abusing Pakistan will never pay anything to India. Instead, India must learn a lesson now. Indian media should acknowledge ground realities in the region, accept the failure of Indian policy in Afghanistan, and India must change its policy of hatred against Pakistan, and Kashmir. Taliban has already warned that their government will not allow anyone to use Afghan soil against any country which is Pakistan.
The Indian government policy of hatred against Pakistan has been revealed to the world now. After failing in Afghanistan, India must now focus on Kashmir and deliver freedom to the people of Kashmir and pull out its troops from occupied Kashmir, otherwise, India will have to face another great embarrassment in Kashmir. The time is coming for India to free Kashmir and pull out its forces from Kashmir. (The writer is a Sydney-based journalist and writer, and editor, Tribune International (Australia); his email address is firstname.lastname@example.org )