After the Russians pulled out from Afghanistan,the Mujahideens began lurking on its western borders. To deal with the situation,the Pakistan Army reorganised the Afghan Mujahideens into the Taliban to serve its strategic interest in Afghanistan. When the US,however,decided to launch an attack on Afghanistan post 9/11,the Pakistani troops operating in the garb of the Taliban were forced to vacate Afghanistan.
While this left the Taliban to fend for itself,it also marked a turning point in the relationship between Pakistan and Taliban. Suspicion began to grow in the minds of Taliban about the Pakistani support for its cause. In response,the Taliban and other militant organisations like the Al Qaeda decided to expand operations in Pakistan,including attacks on Musharraf.
With Musharraf gone now,the present civil government finds itself in a helpless situation. Pakistan is no longer being treated as a trusted partner of the US in its fight against Taliban and the Al Qaeda.
The American and Indian interests of neutralising the Taliban and other outfits in the region have started to clash with Pakistans security concerns against India. The recent peace treaty in the Swat Valley is to be viewed from this perspective. No meaningful results will be achieved until relations between India and Pakistan are normalised.
At this critical juncture,when Zardari and his political team do not possess the requisite political authority,the Army is again emerging as a potent force in Pakistan. General Ashfaq Kayani has,therefore,been invited to visit Washington DC for talks. Indias emergence on the economic front is another issue,especially when Indias relations with the US are slowly warming up.
China is viewing this as a policy of containment by the US and while they are interested in putting a check on terrorist activities in their own region,they will not let Pakistan grow weak on account of US policies in the region.
China is,therefore,unlikely to oppose Taliban.
In light of these developments,Americas military operations in Afghanistan are unlikely to achieve any meaningful results. Until normalcy is restored between India and Pakistan,violence will continue and for the Americans,it will always be difficult to tackle insurgency and terrorism in the region.