April 16, 2010

COIN 101: TTP Down, Not Out

Sometimes the TTP’s attacks on military targets leave government officials speechless as to how such a crude organization could be so sophisticated. And sometimes the TTP is as crude as advertised, using terrible tactics like bombing an internal displacement camp near Kohat in Pakistan.

Possessing the ability to strike military targets would deter real guerrillas these types of attacks. It’s getting harder to say what the TTP even wants anymore, besides US withdrawal from the region. In the Taliban’s grand scheme the TTP is likely no more than a diversion now, a trap sprung too soon by al-Qaeda corruption.

The TTP’s peak appears to be over as it loses the last of its local or national support. However, it’s still capable of making a comeback despite cruel attacks like today’s. Years will be necessary to destroy it piece by piece and no matter how low they are now, if the government doesn’t fill the void the TTP will make a come back.

Whether Islamabad ultimately comes through with economic development or not, delivery on time for Washington is looking doubtful.

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