Pakistan Taliban Conflict: Taliban and Pakistan standing on the brink of war, who will have the upper hand if there is a fight?


When the Taliban took power in Afghanistan in August 2021, it was warmly welcomed by Islamabad. In the initial phase, many delegations were sent by Pakistan to Afghanistan, some reports claim that Pakistan Army officers also participated in the intelligence meetings of the Taliban. While from the outside, this love of two neighbouring Muslim countries was visible, there was a bigger meaning behind this love of Pakistan. Pakistan hoped that Taliban would help it in curbing Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), an organization spreading terrorism on its soil. Pakistan believed that friendship with Taliban would save Afghan soil from being used against Pakistan. But Pakistan's dreams were dashed when TTP became stronger after Taliban came to power. This Tehreek-e-Taliban organization is also the reason for the recent increase in tension between the two countries.

Both the countries are standing on the brink of war today. In 2001, when the American invasion after 9/11 toppled the Taliban government in Afghanistan, the top leadership of Taliban took refuge in Pakistan and today the same Taliban is accused of giving shelter to the enemies of Pakistan. There is tension on the border and it is not known when this tension will turn into a war, but now the questions are, if there is a war then who will have the upper hand, what power does the Taliban have with the help of which it is threatening a powerful army like Pakistan, What is the reason for the recent tension? Let us try to find answers to these questions.

On March 16, a suicide bomber blew up a truck loaded with explosives at a Pakistani military post in North Waziristan, killing seven soldiers. Pakistan held TTP responsible for this attack. In retaliation, Pakistan entered Afghanistan and carried out airstrikes, after which the Taliban reacted strongly, calling these attacks a threat to the sovereignty of the country. In response, Taliban fired several shells on the Pakistan border, in which there is also news of death of one soldier. The situation is still tense and the reason for the tension is TTP, before moving ahead let us know who this TTP is.

Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan, also known as Taliban of Pakistan, is an alliance formed in 2007 against the Pakistan Army by combining several small fundamentalist Islamic organizations under the leadership of Baitullah Mehsud. The purpose of which is to establish Khilafat rule in Pakistan and replace Pakistan law with Sharia law. This organization has carried out many major attacks in Pakistan from 2007 to 2014. TTP had also taken responsibility for the fatal attack on Malala Yousafzai in 2012. In late 2014, TTP attacked a military school in Peshawar, killing more than 130 schoolchildren. After which the Pakistan Army conducted large-scale operations, as a result of which the strength of this organization reduced by more than 50 percent.

But as soon as Taliban came to power in 2021, this organization started flourishing again. However, Taliban always denies that Tehreek-e-Taliban has not received any support from it. But experts say that there is ideological similarity between Taliban and TTP, even if the top leadership of Taliban denies this, there are people within Taliban who have a soft corner for TTP.

What will happen if there is a war between Afghanistan and Pakistan?

There is no doubt that Pakistan is a nuclear power, Pakistan's army is the 9th most powerful army in the world. It has impressive strength in all three fields, Air Force, Army and Navy. In terms of numbers, Taliban does not seem to be any match to Pakistan, but after Pakistan's strike, Taliban had said, “We have long experience of fighting for our independence from the superpowers of the world. We will not tolerate any attack on our country.”

But experts believe that even though Taliban has driven away big powers like Russia, Britain and America from their country. But they have no experience of fighting on the border, Taliban can certainly defeat any superpower in the conditions inside their country. But Pakistan Army has long experience of carrying out attacks outside the border. Pakistan has fought 4 wars with India, apart from this, Pakistan Army has also carried out many operations in Gulf countries outside the country.

How can Taliban be defeated?

Taliban may not have an air force and a large number of tank weapons, but they have suicide bombers and proxies inside Pakistan. Which can worsen the already bad conditions of Pakistan. While Taliban has nothing to lose, fighting another war amidst Pakistan's economic and political crisis does not seem feasible.

Similar situations have arisen many times in the past but both the countries have resolved the issue through talks. In a recent interview given to a media outlet, Pakistan Defense Minister Khawaja Asif said, “His country does not want to get involved in armed conflict with neighboring Afghanistan.” But this time Taliban seems more angry with this action of Pak Army. There is already a war going on in two parts of the world, now it has to be seen at what point this tension will go.