The role played by the “good Taliban”
The young boy who launched the suicide attack in Pulwama belonged to Indian occupied Kashmir; his vehicle was local; the explosives were locally procured. The state of Pakistan had nothing to do with the attack.
But there are networks in Pakistan who think it suits them that the two countries come to war. The suicide bomber from Indian held Kashmir confessed in a video message released by his local JeM chapter that he had joined the network’s Fidayeen group. Masood Azhar who fathered JeM has been accused of masterminding a number of high-profile attacks inside India and occupied Kashmir, the latest on a military camp in Uri in 2016 where 17 Indian army personnel were killed. JeM was declared a terrorist group by the UN Security Council in 2001. The Pulwama incident has brought India and Pakistan to the brink of war not because Pakistan had anything to do with the attack but because despite Masood Azhar’s credentials he was allowed to remain free in Pakistan where he regularly propagated jihad against India.
Pakistan also faces serious economic threats on account of a soft attitude towards networks considered “good Taliban.”
The Pakistani delegation sent to FATF meeting days befoe was told plainly Pakistan does not demonstrate a proper understanding of the terror financing risks posed by Da’esh, Al Qaeda, Jamaat-ud-Dawa, Falah-i-Insaniyat Foundation (FIF), Lashkar-e-Tayyaba, Jaish-e-Muhammad, the Haqqani Network, and persons affiliated with the Taliban. Thus, some of the terrorist groups that Pakistan had ignored because these were supposed to pose no hazard to Pakistan’s security have turned into a threat to the country’s economic lifeline. A day after the FATF decision Pakistan banned JuD and FIF, while the Punjab government hurriedly took over the control of a Bahawalpur seminary run by Masood Azhar, moves which are not likely to impress the FATF.
Any further demotion from the so-called grey list could foil Pakistan’s efforts to attract foreign investments, hinder Pakistan’s access to international markets and financial institutions at a time when it faces a debilitating fiscal crisis. This measure could result in serious economic stress.