Quoting Der Speigel, where ISI DG Pasha's comment that Taliban be allowed the "freedom of speech" to spout their message of militancy raised old suspicion that the ISI is playing a double game, Shafi responds like this...
As it should arouse suspicion, because the Taliban don’t only say what they ‘please’; they also behead and shoot as they ‘please’, and cut off other people’s ears as they ‘please’. Just as they cut off the ears of five tribal elders belonging to a peace committee in Khar the other day.It is people like Kamran Shafi, Ahmad Rashid and other brave journalists who will help us pull Pakistan out of this morass. There is so much potential economically, culturally, socially, in the entire South Asia, its a tragedy that all of that has been held hostage by political and religious issues.
It is hardly a matter of their ‘freedom of opinion’, because their freedom of opinion extends to blowing up schools, in recent weeks not only girls schools but ALL schools in Swat. And effectively taking over completely, that once peaceful and very lovely place. Ask the poor Swatis.
The Taliban’s ‘freedom of opinion’ extends to kidnapping senior and well-guarded government officials such as on Jan 11, when they took the Additional Political Agent of South Waziristan in broad daylight. We must note that whilst he was protected by ‘more than 20 heavily-armed’ guards, just five masked men spirited him away. What in God’s name is going on? Chills you to the bone does it not, this interview by the head of Pakistan’s Mother of All Agencies?
To unlock this potential, India and Pakistan need to act together and uproot this cancer of religio-terrorism, lets call it religerrorism. If not done now, both Pakistani and Indian society will become victims to religerrorism.