The Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) claiming responsibility for the Pakistan school siege is yet another attempt by the group to assert itself in the wake of the ISI trying to split the group further. The message was clearly against the Pakistan army and the ISI which has been targeting them both in terms of military and intelligence might. [Over 100 killed in terror attack in Pak army school]
In the month of May 2014, a split that took place in the TTP was said to be engineered by the ISI. The ISI has been trying to engineer splits in the TT since it has proven to be a Frankenstein Monster for them as all the attacks by these groups are directed at Pakistan.
A very prominent split that the TT witnessed in recent times was when a faction within the group broke away stating that they had wanted to follow the right path. This had hurt the outfit badly and it had vowed revenge.
This split was termed as an ISI engineered split and the writing was on the wall that the TT would hit back. One got to witness the attack on the Karachi Airport which as seen as a bid by the TT to assert itself. The statement following the attack by Sahudullah Shahid a spokeperson of the group said it all- It is an example of what more is to come, he had said.
Today's siege at the Pakistan school is just another reminder of how this group which feels is losing ground is trying to ascertain itself.
The growing clout of the ISIS is also another worry for the TTP. A group of the TTP recently left the outfit and offered support to the ISIS and accepted the Caliphate declared by them. This was another set back for the TTP which lost four very important commanders in the Kurram, Peshawar, Orakzai and Kyber areas.
Situation could worsen:
For the ISI the more the TTP breaks the better as this is one group which has not known to obey the spy agency as the Lashkar-e-Tayiba would do. The launching of an offensive by the army against the TT also witnessed several commanders breaking away from the group.
The commanders loyal to their leader Mehsud felt that Maulana Fazlullah, who belongs to the Yusufzai tribe was not leading well and if they continued to subscribe to him they would gain nothing in the long run.
The group that split felt that Fazlullah was keen on fighting the Pakistan army while the break away group was of the view that they should restrain from doing so. The Fazlullah group had lost 900 militants to the Pakistan army and hence this war turning out to be meaningless according to the breakaway group.
They also felt that he was hesistant to fight the Pakistan army which was responsible for targeting them and killed almost 900 of their cadres.
This split led to the creation of several other factions, namely, the Jamaatul Ahrar and also the Jundallah which was said to be behind the Wagah border attack.
Death of Mehsud:
The ISI was quick to swoop in and try break up the TTP following the death of Hakimullah Mehsud. It was a well accepted fact that the leadership would be taken over by Khan Syed Mehsud. However the ISI was accused of bringing in a factional war. It was said that Syed Mehsud was tamed by the ISI which led to the opposing faction to bring in Fazlullah as the leader.