Islamabad: Pakistan has suffered greatly after 9/11 as the war on terror has cost the country over 35,000 citizens, said a leading daily on Sunday.
An editorial in the Dawn said that Pakistan was stuck with a pre-9/11 mindset in a post-9/11 world.
The Economic Survey of Pakistan, 2010 has pointed out that the `war on terror` has "cost the country more than 35,000 citizens, 3,500 security personnel...erosion of investment climate, nose-diving of production and growing unemployment and above all brought economic activity to a virtual standstill in many parts of the country".
It noted: "Driven by paranoia and fear, the blame for all that ails Pakistan is often laid on external powers. Meanwhile, the outside world has increasingly become suspicious and fearful of Pakistan. How can those two opposites be reconciled?"
The editorial said that from "the glorification and sponsorship of jihad in the 1980s to the present breakdown of internal security and external credibility, a bloody but fairly straight line can be drawn".
"Enamoured of the `non-state actors` that were once cultivated and nurtured to fight the Soviets in Afghanistan, the `low-cost` option for pursuing an India-centric security policy has proved almost impossible to resist.”
"But until that link is severed, completely, totally and with zero tolerance, Pakistan is unlikely to ever emerge from the nightmare it has been plunged into."
It went on to say that the "cognitive dissonance of venerating one era of militant Islamists while believing the present era of militant Islamists needs to be demobilised or eradicated is too much - the former is always likely to trump the latter".
The editorial asked: "Can Pakistan afford, or even survive, another decade like the last?”
"The answer should be obvious, but are the powers that be willing to acknowledge it?"