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A heart wrenching incident in northern Afghanistan

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Message Roohul Amin

By Rooh-ul-Amin


Now that the Taliban have declared their "Spring Offensive Season', the government and the international community should have beefed up security across the country because after killing 17 civilians in Qargha Lake a few days back, they decimated an entire family of a local policeman in Faryab, northern province of Afghanistan. Though northern Afghanistan has been relatively peaceful, however, in recent times many incidents took place that indicate the Taliban are making deep inroads in those parts which once were peaceful. Both the Afghan government and the international community should take the growing influence of the Taliban seriously especially Kabul and Washington DC who recently have locked in a strategic partnership agreement. The incident that invoked me on writing this piece took place on Friday night when some militants entered Mohammad Saleem Mirab's house in Dong Qala village of Almar district. They killed him along with his wife, 25-year old son, daughter and a daughter-in-law. Thus an entire family was eliminated. 

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However, the numb and inert political elite didn't come into move as it is busy in filling its empty belly, devouring wealth of the nation and badly engaged in internal bickering. And if they come into move, it will definitely be confined to political rhetoric only and soon the incident would be forgotten, for we have seen many serious incidents gone unsung. Therefore, soon it turned out to be a footnote rather than a milestone in bringing a revolution against militants.   If the incident is ignored and the culprits are not arrested and not given exemplary punishments, then it is quite sure that others will take lessons of the incident and wouldn't dare to fight militancy with tooth and nail and there is a likelihood that some policemen being deployed in conflict zones would refuse to carry out their duties. This is not a hollow claim or notion. Rather I will give an example from Pakistan's troubled Swat valley. When Pakistan police forces were fighting against militants and the Pakistani Taliban started targeting police families, Pakistan's Elite Force refused to fight against militants in Swat. Later Pakistan army was deployed in Swat and Malakand. Since army troops were mostly from Punjab that's why militants had no access to their families to butcher them, so militancy was subdued there effectively. Though militants targeted FIA and ISI buildings in Lahore but it didn't bow security forces fighting against Fazlullah-led militants in Swat but I am sure if their families would have remained prone to the persecution of militants, then Pakistan army would also have knelt before militants. Now it is necessary that the government of Afghanistan should take it serious before it becomes more monstrous and more deadly issue. Nonetheless, what could be more shameful for those sitting in high echelon of power that the house of Mirab was not attacked at once rather he had received several threats and warnings from the Taliban. His son was threatened repeatedly to quit the job but he didn't. He has sacrificed his entire family for the sake of the nation. According to District Chief, Mohammad Saleh Saleh, Mirab's son was a local policeman and the Taliban had warned his son several times to leave his police job whereas on defiance he met this tragic end. If this is the plight and condition of the family of a policeman what could be the fate of civilian families. And at last who will come to their salvage, who will rescue the nation and who will take away the scourge of terrorism from this land. How long the nation will go through the throes of the war and when will our ruling elite will wake up from its deadly slumber. When will they quite their shenanigans? And when will they shun their devouring, deceitful, and dishonest attitude? If they are still at it and don't discard their avaricious activities, plundering the national coffers, grabbing huge loans, and piling it into their foreign accounts, then they should know that the Taliban will come again. No one could stop their resurgence and if it happens it will be because of the negligence and shenanigans of our ruling elite. The dilemma is that they will run to foreign countries will left this already troubled nation to the mercy of the Taliban. So it wouldn't be exaggeration to say that they know only one thing, and that is how to ruin this already ruined nation. At this very critical juncture, our ruling elite will have to avoid their internal rifts, will have to bring unity and sincerity among their ranks, lest the future of the nation is quite darker even darkest. And a doomsday is awaiting us all whereof there wouldn't be any escape. Today militants have dared to kill an entire family of a policeman, if they come in power they can potentially kill all those who have served in the armed forces of the country. Therefore the matter should be discussed on the floor of the parliament and it should be thought that how serving members' families could be protected in future, for if this is not taken into account seriously, no one will come to join police force or any other armed service.


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The writer is a Kabul-based journalist and contributes articles to English dailies in Kabul and Peshawar.
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