Which brings up a third scenario: A year down the road, US president Barack Obama capitulates to mounting domestic pressure, much of it from his own party, and decides to wind down the American presence in Afghanistan. The ISI tells the Taliban to wait quietly till the infidels have gone. And then move in. Bingo! We can all move back to September 10, 2001. The Taliban, with guidance from the Pakistani forces who are perpetually seeking strategic depth against India, gains effective control over Afghanistan. The Lashkar-e-whatevers and the al-Qaeda are delighted. The Pakistani army is happy that the security of the western flank is outsourced once again to proxies while it resumes directing its low-intensity conflict against India.The other two scenarios in this editorial are just as chilling, if not more so. And note the final sentence in the quote above. The Indians aren't alone... significant numbers of Americans feel the same way. Let's hope the folks who think Pakistan and Afghanistan must be saved have The One's ear. And that he listens.
Unlikely? Perhaps. Improbable? No. Many Americans
are busy comparing their involvement in Afghanistan to Vietnam and asking whether it is worth any more time and effort. There are, however, others who are calling such comparisons nonsensical, since the two situations are entirely different, and are insisting that the stability of both Afghanistan and Pakistan is vital for the world to gain a respite from terrorism. New Delhi can only hope that the latter group wins the argument.
RTWT, as we bloggers say.