As the autumn haze sets in, Pakistan seems to be engulfed in an environment of gloom, confusion, apathy and sorrow. The masses are bewildered at what is going on and what is about to happen. It is a country not directly at war and yet all the social and economic implications of a war are very much present. Pakistan society seems to be in a state of war - a war nobody wants to wage, since not even the ruling junta is prepared to commit Pakistani troops to this most peculiar conflict.

Just hours before the beginning of the peace talks between the Taliban and the US delegation in Qatar the mercurial Afghan President Karzai suspended talks on a long-term security deal to keep US troops in Afghanistan after NATO leaves in 2014.