ALWARA MANDI, Pakistan --Protected from frostbite by thick rubber boots, the Pakistani soldiers shivering on these remote mountains on the Afghan frontier know that when the snow melts their job will only get harder.
Taliban fighters will return -- and find ways to slip past them to attack Afghan and foreign forces on the other side.
Under international pressure to stop a Taliban spring offensive that threatens Afghanistan, Pakistan is planning to fence small sections of this vast rugged frontier despite widespread skepticism that it will be effective.
Pakistan's wild tribal belt has been a refuge for Taliban and al-Qaida militants since the U.S.-led invasion that ousted the hardline militia from Afghanistan at the end of 2001. But over the past year, an alarming escalation in violence has raised concern over whether Pakistan is doing enough to contain the insurgents.
Stung by the mounting criticism, President Gen. Pervez Musharraf this month announced plans to fence 22 miles on the 1,470-mile border. Over the weekend, the Pakistan military ferried journalists to see the badlands of North Waziristan where several sections of the barrier are to go up.
Pakistani officials say the barriers will help secure areas not visible from 900 pre-existing posts along the vast frontier, or will block known insurgent paths. Tripwires, booby traps and patrols are planned to stop insurgents from simply cutting a hole in the fence. A second phase foresees using both fencing and mines to secure 150 miles of border further south in Baluchistan province. Musharraf defends the plan by pointing to the Indian fence on the cease-fire line that divides Kashmir, or to the U.S. barrier against illegal immigrants from Mexico. More....
With the threat of terror some countries face, fences and/or walls will be used more often to secure their borders.
Obviously, they will not keep all illegals, immigrants or terrorists out, but it will decrease the traffic. KING