Political Cost the ANP Paid in Its Fight against Extremists



The policies and plans implemented by the Awami National Party (ANP) in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa during its five year rule there (2008-2012) were based on its manifesto for the 2008 general elections, on the basis of which it had managed to get a clear public mandate.
  As it had categorically pronounced in its 2008 election campaign to fight against pervading violent and militant discourses in the province and the wider region, the ANP-led government eventually took a stern stand against the militants and devised a counterterrorism policy to contain the latter’s growing social control and terrorist acts. No doubt the militants were not only undermining the indigenous socio-cultural discourse of the land but were also instrumental in destroying human life, property and dignity of almost the whole population of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and FATA besides other parts of Pakistan.
  The ANP had to confront extremist and terrorist organizations on ideological (discourse), political, military and cultural levels which it did at the risk of its leadership and cadre besides annoying many among national and international strategists.
  A review of militants’ ideological propaganda literature, which is available in print and electronic forms, suggests that the militant or extremist discourse is intricately woven around the central premise of a homogenized worldview. The discourse presents a world where every object is identical with every other object. It is a world where all living species have the same brain structure, speaking the same language, thinking the same way, having similar social organization and having similar cultural fabric. Hence, it is important for them to eliminate indigenous socio- cultural fabric everywhere in the world on the one hand while on the other hand the militant discourse tries to push back history through the judicious use of the concept of Khilafat. Both indigenous wisdom and modern human civilization must be the first victim.
 Through the use of this logic, the discourse has brought about shift in religious authority, e.g.,
 ‘Jihad’ has been decreed to be equal to Qital, and it has been propagated as the only way left for struggle, and finally ‘Jihad’ has been sanctioned as a private enterprise. The concept of Khilafat 
is nested in the concept of Jihad and the concept of Jihad is nested in the concept of Shahadat. This triangular construct is coupled with ‘otherization’ to make it more lethal in waging a war against the whole world.
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