The new generation of Pakistani military officers is more sensitive to terrorism than its predecessors, says Robin Raphel, former assistant secretary of state for South Asia, rejecting a claim by the Afghan ambassador that those officers are more likely to back terrorism than current Pakistani commanders.
At a weekend seminar on Afghanistan at the Aspen Institute, California, America’s most prestigious forum on security issues, Ms Raphel said a lack of clarity in Washington’s policies was preventing Pakistan from breaking its links with the Haqqani network.
Hamdullah Mohib, Afghanistan’s ambassador in Washington, spoke before Ms Raphel and urged the international community to stop supporting Pakistan.
“Pakistan is moving toward becoming a state that supports terrorism as an element of foreign policy, to a state that believes in terrorism,” he claimed.
He alleged that the new cadre of officers in the Pakistani military believes in terrorism as an ideology and as those officers rose through the ranks, they would create more problems for the world.
He also urged the international community to work with the Pakistani civilian leadership to keep the military in check.
Since Pakistan’s ambassador Aizaz Ahmad Chaudhary decided not to attend the seminar because of a recent experience in Washington where he was hooted and ridiculed at a similar event, Ms Raphel was apparently the only friend Pakistan had in the seminar.