International Politics

Pakistan: Need To Understand Psychology Of Terrorism


Pakistan is witnessing a rise in violence, and at the 40th National Security Committee meeting, it vowed to show ‘zero tolerance’ for terrorism amid the spurt in terrorist strikes by banned outfit Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan

Islamabad [Pakistan]: Pakistan is witnessing a rise in violence, and at the 40th National Security Committee meeting, it vowed to show ‘zero tolerance’ for terrorism amid the spurt in terrorist strikes by banned outfit Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), however, Islamabad needs to understand the psychology of terrorism, reported Daily Times.

Countering this religiously masked political ideology requires demystifying the terrorism equation. Identifying the various players, understanding the power dynamics and most importantly figuring out their vulnerabilities to formulate a winning strategy. In his notable body of work, Robert Pape, an eminent American academic and political scientist, encompassed militancy and warfare, showing that there is a method to the madness.

Pape created a comprehensive database of a total of 315 instances of suicide terrorist attacks in the world that occurred from 1980 until 2010. This study was the basis for his book, “Dying to Win: The Strategic Logic of Suicide Terrorism.”
Pape says in his book that “nearly all suicide terrorist attacks have in common a specific secular and strategic goal: to compel modern democracies to withdraw military forces from territory that the terrorists consider being their homeland. Religion is rarely the root cause, although it is often used as a tool by terrorist organizations in recruiting and in other efforts in service of the broader strategic objective.”

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Notably, the 40th National Security Committee’s zero-tolerance stance on terrorism comes at a time when the peace agreement between the TTP and the Pakistan administration was revoked. Khyber Pakhtunkhwa accounted for 58 per cent of all terrorist incidents in Pakistan, with some of them also occurring in Balochistan.
Be it the TLP or TTP, they are masquerading as religious parties, their leaders are sociopathic, power-hungry men who seek economic gains.

In 2021, the Taliban met no resistance in their advance towards Kabul to reclaim their country from American forces, and they have been ruling Afghanistan ever since. Ideally, this should lead to peace because the foreign occupation has ended. However, the Tahreek Taliban Pakistan (TTP) is unleashing terrorism on Pakistani soil by taking refuge in Afghanistan. The TTP is launching lethal attacks on the Pakistani police and military.
Mufti Noor Wali Mehsud, chief of the TTP, is demanding the reversal of the FATA merger as he is seeking free movement between the Afghan-Pakistan border to make the 1884 Durand Line irrelevant – because it keeps him relevant.

On the face of it, all old and new versions of the Taliban from both sides of the border seem like an ungovernable people and an irredeemable menace. Daily Times reports that no treaty or agreement can sustain peace in the region.
In 2007, General Musharraf made a huge blunder during the Red Mosque siege in Islamabad while negotiating with the TLP, led by burqa-donning cleric Maulana Abdul Aziz and his brother.

The state erroneously negotiated with these two brothers from a religious frame of reference. It must be understood that the TTP, TLP and other such outfits are not religious parties. They only masquerade as such. They are political parties and their ambitions are very worldly. Their goals and the means they used to achieve them were very political, unscrupulous, and often devoid of humanity.

The TLP was jockeying for power and using women and children as human shields to achieve this end. They recruited young impressionable boys from KPK to create their militia, reported Daily Times.
The present TTP incitement of violence in the erstwhile FATA is similar to resistance from tyrants dethroned by the inclusion of the area under the Pakistani state’s legal and physical control.

The mufti status is only a smoke screen to confuse and misguide. These hollow demands for a shariah law state in FATA are only a cover for the true goal of a tyrant to rule a primitive and lawless state.
TTP’s faultline is also posited as a pious Islamic one with their demand for a Shariah state, but it is truly about power and the control of resources, reported Daily Times.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by HW News staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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