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News&Views April 2010 Terror Turmoil-I
April 2, 2010
In Pakistan, a man without his AK 47 is like a woman without her child-says a former Pakistani foreign minister and former speaker of Pakistani Assembly.
Exact statement of Mr. Gohar Ayub Khan is "
Pakistani man without an AK 47 is like taking away child from a woman"
He was speaking during a discussion on Headlines Today, an Indian TV channel. The discussion was about the headquarters of terror-cum charity organization Jamaat Ud Dawa at Muridke about 30 kilometers from Lahore (Lahore is one of the largest cities in Pakistan with more than 10 million people living there). See short tv movies link below- Movies and discussions are in English.
JUD - involved in Mumbai Blast
Muridke, headquarters of Jamaat is famous as the place where terrorist who attacked Mumbai were trained. After the terror attacks in Mumbai, Jammat Ud Dawa was declared a terrorist organization by United Nations.
Brave reporter Ms. Baweja
One of the Indian reporters, Ms. Harjeet Baweja Of Headlines Today, could enter these headquarters and make these short tv-movies of activities going on there. I admire the courage of Harjeet and some other young girls who work as TV anchors and take trips to such dangerous places. Generally I think even Pakistani women may not want to venture out at such headquarters of terrorist organizations.
The Headquarters of this organization looks to be a real contrast. You
see in one shot 100's people running
with AK 47 guns, In the second shot children, who look really getting
trained for terrorist type activities and in the third one a little
up- school going children playing with a computer, are seen. The
then moves to a
hospital in the compound, very modern one with all gadgets, operation
theater, medicines, injections lying on tables and about 200 beds. A
comparatively luxurious one.
Modern Hospital with 200 beds, operation theater but no patients, no doctors
Seeing it one may start feeling -may be there is at least some charity activity in the organization as Pakistani government officials claim. But then you also wonder why so many AK 47 holding tough guys are there. Then suddenly you hear voice of reporter Ms. Baweja. She says, "do you notice there are no patients, no doctors in the whole hospital!"
Banned by government but city administrator says they can not stop its activities
After the UN ban, Pakistani government had declared that it has banned the Jammat and government has freezed all its assets and taken over the whole organization. But it looks like these declarations have no meaning.
International Terrorist declared by UN and USA but roaming freely with AK 47
The chief of the organization Hafiz Saeed. He is considered to be the mastermind behind 26/11 terror attacks on hotels and metro stations in Mumbai, which killed around 166 people, from India, USA, UK, Australia etc. I remember, I had met a guy from USA and his daughter in a party in Mumbai one day and talked with them for some time and next day I saw on TV their picture, among those killed in this attack.
Hafeez Saeed has been declared by UN and USA an International terrorist but is roaming freely in this place and running this organization, which looks to be basically a terrorist training place with a cover up by phoney charity hospital, School etc.
In one shot administrator of the city is shown to be saying, "The organization is banned but you can not say we have taken no action. We can not obviously close it down completely."
Procession of 10,000 people carrying AK 47
In another shot Hafeez Saeed is shown to be leading a procession of more than 10,000 people, almost all carrying AK 47 and shouting loudly, "One Mumbai attack is not enough. Let us have jehad. We will have to do at least 1000 Mumbai type attacks."
1.7 million AK 47 in Pakistan illegally owned- one illegal AK 47 for every 100 people
The former speaker of parliament of Pakistan, Mr. Gohar was reacting to these shots. He claimed that there are more than 1.7 million illegal AK 47 In Pakistan. That makes one AK 47 for every hundred people that too illegal?
He was saying that Pakistan is armed to teeth with illegal weapons. Thus he was practically implying that there is nothing unusual in such processions with 10000 people with AK 47 and issuing threats of 1000 terrorist attacks.
He acted indeed funny in the show. Initially he tried to defend these scenes etc. by such funny arguments. Like one of his argument was that this organization is a charity organization. It had reached at earthquake place before government and almost implied that hence it should be allowed to carry out its violent training etc. Another of his argument was it has nothing to hide, otherwise why will it allow a reporter from India.
"We may be running terror training camps for terror attacks on you but let us be friends"
But after some discussion, when it became clear that movie makes it pretty clear that the place is terrorist training type place and Pakistani establishment seems to be quite involved in this terror training camp as well as in providing it a cover up, he started arguing "why should Indian channels show such scenes and discussions. Let us be friends. People of India and Pakistan are the same. They love each other. Let us be friends."
What type of society Pakistani top rulers have in mind for their country
When you see that their former speaker of parliament, former minister for foreign affairs implies that there is nothing wrong with a procession of 10,000 people with most carrying AK 47's and shouting that they will do 1000's of terror attacks, killing people from all over world, specially from India, you start wondering what are these rulers planning about their own country?
Corruption and Duplicity- smugglers and criminals provide security to USA army supplying convoys
Former president of Pakistan Musharraf did all sort of double games during his rule in Pakistan. Now it is practically accepted by every one in world that he duped both USA and Taliban or Al-Qaeda. Currently in Pakistan some administrators and journalists are trying to assess amount of contracts (most of the money came from USA), Musharraf managed to give to his relatives and friends in army and government organizations. According to them it seems to run into at least a billion dollars.
USA army in Afghanistan gets practically all its supplies via Pakistan. The goods are offloaded at Karachi port and then carried in conveys of trucks to Afghanistan. There are reports, which say that companies which provide these trucks are owned by some of the top government officials, even presidents or their relatives, friends etc. The security for these are provided by the same smugglers or terrorist against whom USA army is supposed to fight. Some reports say, Dawood Ibrahim, who has been declared international terrorist, smuggler and is perhaps also an agent of Pakistani spy agency ISI, is involved in providing such security to USA army supply convoys. He has been involved in several terrorist blasts in India.
Terror-cum smuggling machinery of Dawood Ibrahim, spread over India, Mid-East, South East Asia, USA, UK is reported to have turn over in several 100's of million dollars.
People who go for terror training in Pakistan do not have entry stamps of Pakistan on their passports
Terrorists from many countries including India, USA, UK, Western Europe, Russia, China, Central Asia have been found to have had their terror training in Pakistan. Such terrorists often go to Pakistan via Middle East. Many of these terrorists did not have on their passports entry stamps of Pakistan, or any other record of their trips to Pakistan, even though they admitted that they were in Pakistan.
Terror Machinery is considered strategic depth for Pakistan, which will help them in creating equality with India, manipulating government in Afghanistan and bargaining with USA money and creation of international status
It seems pretty clear that Pakistan is currently being ruled by army top bosses and some feudal lords. Also most of these top guys do support creating and maintaining terror machinery in Pakistan and their hubs in other countries. The terror machinery is supposed to be strategic depth for Pakistan in their defense and foreign policy goals. Their claim seems to be that India is too large but Pakistan has to be equal to India and only way to equalize is to have a terror machinery. It does not end of course with India. Talibans are needed for strategic depth in Afghanistan, otherwise Pakistan will feel insecure. Then they have to have training camps for terrorists stationed practically any where in world, Middle East, Russia, USA, UK, West Europe etc. It helps Pakistani army to squeeze money and arms out of USA.
US Army generals and top diplomats also have started singing the same song as Pakistani Army
USA soldiers in Afghanistan and Iraq were supposed to provide strength to itself and world. But now it seems to have become weakness for its administration and army generals, it has to announce that it can not support Israel much because that will provide insecurity to its soldiers? Army top officials and diplomats of USA in Pakistan practically every day make announcements which indirectly hint that Pakistan has right to keep its terrorist machinery intact as its strategic assets against India and Afghanistan (all because USA needs a face saving device to get out its army -- which face of USA does it save?). They seem to be now getting ready to announce similarly for Nukes in Pakistan.
USA intrusion in Af-Pak region was supposed to save world from Taliban but now it plans to negotiate with Taliban and thrust them and Pakistan on Afghanistan. For American Administration, suddenly Taliban or Hamas etc. seem to have become human friendly organizations, generating equality in world . Friendship circle of USA or countries in the same wavelength as itself seem to be changing in Asia-Pacific from Japan, Australia, Israel and India to Taliban, Palestinian terror organizations, Pakistan etc.
One of the strangest campaigns by USA media, press and administration is that of trying to nail Afghanistan President Karzai on charges of corruption. Again it seems American
administration is in the spell of Pakistani spy agency ISI and army bosses
and trying to work on Pakistani ISI agenda rather than their own. Americans
should really look first at corruption of its own team. The following
quote in article by M.K. Bhadra Kumar in atimes is worth pondering
over. (see link below for the full article- a very interesting analysis)
"But then, no one is asking Holbrooke since when is it that corruption became a big issue in America's South Asia policies? Billions and billions of dollars American taxpayers' dollars were funneled into the black hole that was military dictator General Zia-ul-Haq's Pakistan during the Afghan jihad.
In today's Afghan war, history is repeating itself. There is no accountability about where the money is going and it is the talk of the bazaars that vested interests control disbursement of such vast sums of money. The US Congress should perhaps begin an investigation starting with the so-called "experts" who advise the Pentagon and Holbrooke's team."
May be USA
administrators and army generals think of it as just a temporary
strategic step to get them out of some of the problems they are
facing and are not serious about such crazy indications by them or what seems to be a submission to ISI agenda. But still it
seems a bit strange for USA to follow such a course even for a
After all USA administration is not Pakistani Army!
Musharraf's unique gift
Musharraf's rule and support he got from USA Europe did harm Pakistan quite a bit, still he did give a unique long lasting gift to Pakistan. He made its media and press practically free. Even though there are some problems still left, for example any body writing strong words against Pakistani Army or ISI is threatened immediately, some have been killed also. But there are many quite bold writers. This is perhaps first time that Press and media have such a freedom in Pakistan.
I have been asked several times by Americans "why did Musharraf made media and press free?" There are no clear answers. One possibility is that he assessed that their barks may not matter much for him and he can get away with real bad ones. What ever may be his reasons, this seems to be one of the great developments. A lid opened by Musharaff may now never get easily closed. Even Pakistani army may not dare to go too far in this respect.
Not every one in Pakistan thinks that these ideas of strategic depths via terror thrusted by army top and feudal rulers are good for them and Pakistan
Fortunately not every one agrees with these ideas of strategic depths via terror thrusted by army top and feudal rulers are good for them and Pakistan. Average Pakistani has to worry more about his daily bread, butter and living conditions, just like any other country. He/She has practically no time for thinking about such exotic strategic depths.
Also many political experts, journalists, opinion writers are against these ideas. They are worried about the direction their country is taking. I am giving below links to some of these write ups, blogs etc. from Pakistani press.
Let us hope this silent majority in Pakistan and writers and journalists of Pakistan can provide direction and strength to their country to get it out of terror turmoil created by insecure army top, feudal rulers of their country and some others.
Countries like USA, India should support this strength from silent majority in Pakistan. But just now USA seems to be supporting opposite side- the Pakistani army and feudal lords while India's moves are not clearly directed at all towards solving these problems of terror generation against them by Pakistani army top and feudal lords etc.
Some articles on terror turmoil related with Pakistan -used to form above views
1. Headlines Today tv movies on Baweja visit to JUD headquarters
2. Pakistani jets have pounded bombs several times in their own tribal areas. Strangely they use jets to kill their own people. Is there any other country where government uses jets for pounding bombs on its own people? There are protests by writers from these tribal areas about it. Pakistani army and elites seem to be taking much less care to avoid civilian deaths compared to care taken by Americans, carrying out drone attacks. But surprisingly their elites protest only about drone attacks and not about such jet attacks.
a news in times of India
An article by Maleen Hafiz in Times of India on Pakistani establishment using mafia links for terrorism
3. Articles which talk about American policies and failures and corruption involved in US money flow etc.
NY Times article by Dexter Filkins on Karzai's brother, drug racket and CIA involvements in it
atimes article by Alfred W McCoy on opium war in af-pak region, covert cia operations etc.
atimes article by Syed Saleem Shahzad on pakistan root to Moscow attacks
Newsweek article by Jeremy Khan on next AL Quaeda
Fastertimes article by Jeremy Khan on why India Pakistan cooperation on terror can not go too far
ISI continues to maintain links with Lashkar-e-taiba according to US expert- a news article in Times of India
NY times article by Dexter Filkins on corruption involved in contractos from USA involved in covert spying in af-Pak regions
An article in Financial Times by Daniel Dombey - US Doubts on Islamabad's Intentions
atimes article by Shibil Siddqui on taliban as stretgic depth for Pak army etc.
Dawn article by Kamaran Shafi -Defining strategic depth
4. American special representative for af-pak region Richard
Holbrook did start with right ideas and analysis. But One wonders
is making him do opposite of what his analysis tells him
New Yorker article by George Packer on Richard Holobrook his analysis and his team building up
Fastertimes article by Jeremy Khan Leshkar attack in Kabul Holbrook denial and then taking back denial
article in atimes by M.K. Bhadrakumar - Pakistan sets the ground rules
5. Good analytical articles by Pakistani writers on problems their country faces due to terrorism being used by their army top and feudal lords as a strategic instrument and support USA provides to army top and feudal lords. Some of these writers were threatened with attacks on their homes with bullets, suspected to be instigated by Pakistani spy agency ISI and army top. Their courage is admirable.
Analysis by Erum A. Hyder in Dawn - two sides of the same Foin-Pakistan has an India problem.
An interesting Interview of Ayesha siddiqua by Wahajat Ali in Counter Punch- Pakstan for sale
An exceptional analysis by Nadeem F. Paracha in Dawn on rise of extremism among army and upper middle class
in Pakistan- The scholer, the sufi and terrorism
An article by Nadeem F. Paracha in Despardes on Imran Khan, a great cricketer with a reputation of being a playboy tuned into an extremist politician
An anlysis by Babar Sattar in The News - nexus between millitants and army top bosses etc.
While these writers analyze well some of editorials in Dawn strangely argue that Army top and feudal lords
style of using terrorism as a strategic asset should be supported by USA. Here are two such example
Dawn editorial -II
6. My earlier articles on similar topics
Is USA now going to support terrorist networks based in Pakistan?
USA bent on fighting both sides in af-pak sector war
American Policies on War in Afghanistan and Pakistan
7. photos taken from