At least all governments have had test of terrorism. Terrorists are the first enemies of any public because they cause panics, pain and havoc in any society. Terrorism activities like bombing of embassies, attacking of government officials and civilians through suicide bombings, kidnaps and other violent move have left thousand with injuries and many others for death. Some of the greatest terrorism groups in the world include the Taliban, al-Qaida, Lord’s Resistance army among other vigilante groups that disregards the value of human life. Despite this social harm, some people in the society still support such groups through funding and military support. Therefore, such groups have enough ability to destroy more lives and pose a major threat to the society. This paper shall discuss on Pakistan Taliban its causes/support, how it uses media, its portrayal on media and forces affecting the Taliban.
Rashid, A. (2010) asserts that Taliban emanates from an Arabic word taleb, which means a student. Taliban is a tribal terrorist group with much importance attached on the group of the Sunni Muslims (strict followers of teachings of the Prophet Muhammad). Taliban started in Afghanistan as resistance movement and the right hand of the US government and Pakistan that struggled to end soviets invasion and communism. The people of Afghanistan and American formed it to fight the influence of the Soviet Union in the Arabic world. Initially, America funded the group activities and provided military training to the members who fought bitter war and defeated the soviets. After this struggle, they overthrew the soviet backed government of Afghanistan led by President Sayyid Najibullah. After they seized power, political greed caused disunity in the team. It once again became powerful in 1994 after getting weapons, funds and military support from Pakistan as they guarded Pakistan convoy when they opened trade route from Central Asia to Pakistan (Rashid, 2010). It dominates large parts of both Pakistan and Afghanistan. With all these aids, Taliban was able to bring most Afghanistan cities under its control. After the Saudi Arabia monarchy government allowed US troops to operate on its soil seeking for Osama Bin Laden, he moved to Sudan before joining the Taliban in Afghanistan. It is important to note that the Taliban had strong connections with the Wahhabism Muslims from Saudi Arabia (Drumble, 2005). That is why they came to Osama’s aid. The Taliban allowed Osama to recruit and train more militants. This made the united nations security council and the US warned the Taliban before ordering them twice to cease supporting Osama and hand him in. Nonetheless, Taliban defied the order and continued with bombing of several US assets in Kenya and Tanzania under Osama. Eventually, the US bombed its military camps before being joined by the NATO forces in struggle against the Osama. The Pakistan president also swore to support US in arresting Osama. This led to a series of protests in Pakistan from the groups supporting Taliban. The fleeing Taliban member sought refuge from their Pashtu brothers on the North-West borders of Pakistan.
Drumble (2005) argues that today, Taliban holds control over some regions in Pakistan and Afghanistan. The Taliban are strong enough with ability to destabilize any of the two governments. At one point, the Taliban caused loss of live of many Pakistan soldiers that forced the government of Pakistan to sign a peaceful agreement. However, terrorism cases have reduced since the death of Osama bin Laden in 2011, many institutions still want to the funding of the Taliban terrorists (Rashid, 2010). Nobody is willing to come out, claim the funding, and support the Taliban activities. This may be because they fear taking responsibility. However, the Taliban funding before Osama Bin Laden joined the group was very clear. It came from the US government and the government of the Pakistan people. However, since the injury on its embassies and soil, the US stopped direct support of the Taliban group in papers and policies. The Pakistan government too stopped the funding and claimed to support US activities in an attempt to end terrorism. Under carpet talks still hold that the US and Pakistan government may be funding the Taliban activities.
Primarily, the Taliban’s funding is from protection fees. Several groups contribute to Taliban’s commanders in return for their safety. One theory holds that the Islamic brotherhood is funding the group through payment of compulsory tithe by all households in both Pakistan and Afghanistan (Swami, 2010). The religious leaders go on collecting this money and pay protection fees to the Taliban commanders. Some American officials also pay protection fee to Taliban to reduce the cases of bombing and suicidal attacks while in Pakistan or Afghanistan. The US government officials bribe the Taliban commanders with close to $400 million on yearly basis. Several media in Pakistan have questioned on accountability and the commitment of the US officials to their constitution and policies. The media in Pakistan also propose that the Taliban are drug lords and they get most funding from poppy that is grown in parts of Pakistan and Afghanistan (Swami, 2010)
The NATO also pays to Taliban to allow safe passage of their convoy from Pakistan to Afghanistan. There is a claim that Taliban receives millions of dollars from outside countries especially from the private contributions of the Persian Gulf countries (McKenzie, 2009). These reports show that Persian states have signed thousands of deals and negotiations with the Taliban and they pay dearly. The other factor that strengthens the Taliban is competent leaders. Since 1970s, Taliban has had organized leaders like Ahmed Shah Massoud and Osama Bin Laden (McKenzie, 2009). These leaders took them through most battles and success. They were organized because they had good education that they got from the refugee camps during the oppression from the US government. Apart from that, they had a factor that Islamic factor that united them. Islam teaches its congregation to be one in times of need and defend each other until death. The Islamic religion advocates for justice even with their own lives for the sake of holding their faith for they will have a bigger reward in heaven. Thus, the Muslims can fight the holy war Jihad when under oppression (Drumble, 2005). This explains why most members of Taliban go into suicide bombing thinking they are fighting a holy war.
Different media have had different reaction towards the acts of the Taliban. Most of the western mass media has portrayed the Taliban as terrorist and people who disregard life. However, the Taliban still use media to set their demands and instill fear in most people around the globe. Moreover, they also use the media to recruit more members into their forces. For example, when they say over media that they are fighting for their rights and that the Quran supports jihad, which they are fighting, this causes confusion with appeal to appropriate authority through propaganda, they convince the whole Islamic world (BBC, 2012).
To sum up, the mother of Taliban is their religion. However, this does not mean that the Islamic religion teaches people terrorism. What actually happens is that groups of few individuals interpret the Quran in favor of terrorism. They spread this over media and the rest follow. With funding and military assets, a whole terrorism group with intent and ability to cause terror is set up. Terrorism cost human life and suffering. Therefore, if anyone wishes to end terrorism, everybody should embrace social responsibility and promote of good will.