As Defense Secretary Leon Panetta was flying toward Afghanistan earlier this week, he told the reporters flying with him that Pakistan is a critical element in ultimately winning the war in Afghanistan. “Ultimately,” he said, “we can’t win the war in Afghanistan without being able to win in our relationship with Pakistan as well.” Yet as Panetta was stating the obvious, the Pakistanis were striking a deal with the Pakistani Taliban that allowed 145 of their fighters out of Pakistani jails, as Long War Journal reports:
Without a doubt, a peace agreement between the Pakistani government and the Taliban will lead to an increased level of violence in Afghanistan. The Pakistanis have encouraged the Taliban to fight in Afghanistan in the past, and given the current deteriorating relations between the US and Pakistan, there is no reason to believe Pakistan will not continue to do so.
Actions speak louder than words.