Danger of Taliban Pakistan takeover exaggerated by West - analyst


Tihar Jail
Jun 16, 2009
Danger of Taliban Pakistan takeover exaggerated by West - analyst


MOSCOW, July 16 (Marc Bennetts, RIA Novosti) - The danger of the Taliban seizing control of Pakistan and its nuclear arsenal has been overstated in the West, a leading South Asia analyst has told RIA Novosti.

The Taliban advanced to within 100 km of the Pakistani capital Islamabad in April, resulting in widespread fears that the nuclear-armed country could fall to the radical Islamic group.

"I think the threat is exaggerated quite a bit," International Institute for Strategic Studies South Asia analyst Rahul Roy-Chaudhury said. "Pakistan is not anywhere near a failed state. There is a lot of resilience in the people. Pakistan is a united state."

The Taliban's advance was met by a fierce reaction from the Pakistani army, which has advanced into the militants' Swat Valley stronghold, and Roy-Chaudhury said the campaign has proved that, "The Pakistani military can and will act when it knows its interests are at stake."

The analyst's comments came just before Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was to meet with his Pakistani counterpart Yousuf Raza Gilani in Egypt on Thursday for talks aimed at calming tensions between the two states.

Relations between the two regional nuclear powers countries deteriorated after last November's attacks on the Indian city of Mumbai. India has blamed the Pakistani-based Lashkar-e-Taiba movement for the assault by heavily-armed terrorists, and has said it wants to see a "visible response" from Islamabad.

However, Roy-Chaudhury said that despite New Delhi's very genuine concerns over terrorist attacks on India being launched from Pakistani territory, it did not believe that there was any real likelihood of radicals seizing control of its neighbor.

"I think the Indian position also appears to be that the possibility that the Taliban could take over Pakistan is exaggerated," he said.

He also stressed that while "there is a concern that extremists may be able to infiltrate into the nuclear command and control authority," the Pakistani military "is very aware of this, it knows a threat exists, they are not in a state of denial."

"They are doing everything they can to prevent any radicalized individual or group of individuals from being involved in the nuclear weapon structure."

"So far," he added, "they've been doing a decent job."

Danger of Taliban Pakistan takeover exaggerated by West - analyst | Top Russian news and analysis online | 'RIA Novosti' newswire


Senior Member
Mar 10, 2009
If we analyze the timeline, it was only after the west sounded the alarm bells about the Taliban approaching the capital, and put enormous pressure on Pakistan, did they start doing something about it.

In hindsight, one can say that the "west" was wrong. But perhaps its the west that saved Pakistan?

Another POV is that the PA would have mobilized sooner or later, and they were perhaps simply waiting for more "perks" from the US before they got down to business.


Regular Member
Jun 11, 2009
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I don't think the west was exaggerating.The taliban was surely trying to encircle Islamabad.
I have seen Pak dipomats defending themselves by saying," The road to Islamabad from Buner is not as the crow flies". I have to say these were lame excuses.If Pakistan Army had not taken action over a period of time from 6 months to 1 year taliban would have had major presence in all major cities of Pakistan. They have it now, but it would have been more brazen. I wouldn't have been surprised with more open and daring attacks on police as well as the military establishments.That's how they do it. Slowly but steadily.They are experts at that and are used to that strategy.

What happened to the peace deal they had with the Mullahs in SWAT valley? Nobody's talking about it ? PAK PM used to talk about how important it is to have the peace deal in the SWAT valley and after the war starts he is talking about ,"Oh, its about PAKS survival. I request the nation to please support this war".

Before the war he was hell bent in denying it was a threat to PAK's existence.
Appreciate more inputs from members on this.

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