Saturday, December 6, 2008

Stateless Zones?

The assertion by Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari that the perpetrators behind Mumbai's 26/11 Attack were "stateless actors" leaves a lot to be questioned.

One such significant question was brought up in an editorial in The Hindu (dated Dec. 6, 2008). It questioned whether the idea of "stateless actors" could be extended to "stateless zones," where the civilian government has no control. 

In case of existence of such zones, would it be valid for a foreign military establishment to attack those zones, since they are stateless? If such stateless zones were responsible for inhuman acts around the world, would the world be justified in attacking them, since they were, after all, "stateless"?

These are hard questions which Mr. Zardari will have to ponder over. I doubt he can more than ponder: by no means will the Army allow him to touch the free-for-all-death-to-all terrorist camps in PoK. 

In Mr. Zardari wishes to absolve his country, his Government and himself of the 10 terrorists (at least one of whom is a Pakistani citizen from Punjab) who bruised Mumbai, then he must be ready to pay the price. As US SoS Rice said, if Pakistan cannot act, then the US (and in extension, other countries) will. 

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