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Posts Tagged ‘terrorism’

America’s “Terrorist Academy” in Iraq Produced ISIS Leaders

Posted by yourpakistan on October 10, 2014


ISIS brain child of zionists & americans

By Mike Whitney – Opinion Maker

“Since 2003, Anglo-American power has secretly and openly coordinated direct and indirect support for Islamist terrorist groups linked to al-Qaeda across the Middle East and North Africa. This ill-conceived patchwork geostrategy is a legacy of the persistent influence of neoconservative ideology, motivated by longstanding but often contradictory ambitions to dominate regional oil resources, defend an expansionist Israel, and in pursuit of these, re-draw the map of the Middle East.” Nafeez Ahmed, “How the West Created the Islamic State“, CounterPunch

“The US created these terrorist organizations. America does not have the moral authority to lead a coalition against terrorism.” Hassan Nasralla, Secretary General of Hezbollah

October 06, 2014 “ICH” – “Counterpunch” –  The Obama administration’s determination to topple Syrian President Bashar al-Assad is pushing the Middle East towards a regional war that could lead to a confrontation between the two nuclear-armed rivals, Russia and the United States.

Last week, Turkey joined the US-led coalition following a vote in parliament approving a measure to give the government the authority to launch military action against Isis in Syria. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan made it clear that Turkish involvement would come at a price, and that price would be the removal of al Assad. According to Turkey’s Hurriyet Daily News:

“Turkey will not allow coalition members to use its military bases or its territory in the fight against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) if the objective does not also include ousting the Bashar al-Assad regime, President Recep Tayyip Erdo?an hinted on Oct. 1…

“We are open and ready for any cooperation in the fight against terrorism. However, it should be understood by everybody that Turkey is not a country in pursuit of temporary solutions, nor will Turkey allow others to take advantage of it,” Erdo?an said in his lengthy address to Parliament.”..

“Turkey cannot be content with the current situation and cannot be a by-stander and spectator in the face of such developments.” (“Turkey will fight terror but not for temporary solutions: Erdo?an“, Hurriyet) Read the rest of this entry »

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US Forces Kicked Off Shamsi Air Base

Posted by yourpakistan on April 22, 2011


Source: The News

Pakistan has stopped all US operations from the Shamsi Air Base in Balochistan, an airport which was given to American forces for use after 9/11 and drone attacks were launched from the base on targets in the tribal areas, military sources have confirmed. It was also used extensively in 2001 when thousands of US sorties took off to bomb Afghanistan a few weeks after the 9/11 attack in New York.

As the relations between Islamabad and Washington have strained due to latter’s mounting interference and repeated breach of Pakistan’s sovereignty, the US Embassy spokesman, Alberto Rodriguez, confirmed that there are no US forces at the Shamsi Air Base in Balochistan.

Pakistan Air Force (PAF) spokesperson, when approached about his version on the vacation of US forces and the deadly drones from Shamsi airfield, explained that the airfield does not belong to the PAF while the Pakistan Army sources confirmed that the airfield was free from the American forces.

No one was prepared to share with The News the dates or the time period when the Shamsi airfield was vacated by the Americans although the sources insist that it is a recent development.

Almost a year back, Defence Minister Ahmad Mukhtar spoke on the topic of the Shamsi Air Base confirming that it was being used by American forces for logistical purposes but, he added, the government was not satisfied with payments for the use of the facility.

Mukhtar, however, did not go into the nature of airfield’s use by the American forces. Prior to Shamsi, Pakistan had also got vacated from the US forces the Jacobabad Air Base and Pasni, which were used for its operations in Afghanistan.

The US has been using the Shamsi Air Base in Balochistan province to station unmanned Predator drones that have been used to attack terrorist targets inside Pakistan’s tribal areas. Shamsi airfield, also called Bandari, is a small airfield and air station located about 200 miles southwest of Quetta near the town of Washki.

In 2009, media reports revealed that the airfield was used by the United States Central Intelligence Agency as a base for Predator drone attacks on so-called militants in Pakistan’s tribal areas but ended up killing several hundreds innocent people. On January 9, 2002 a US Marine Corps KC-130 aircraft reportedly crashed on approach to Shamsi. All seven crew members were killed in the crash.

In February 2009, The Times of London had announced that it had obtained Google images from 2006 which showed Predator aircraft parked outside a hangar at the end of the runway of the Shamsi airfield. Before that, a US Senator Dianne Feinstein said that the CIA was basing its drone aircraft in Pakistan. The US company Blackwater was also reported to have a presence there, hired by the government to arm the drones with missiles.

It was General Musharraf who had permitted the US to use its airbases not only to attack Afghanistan but also to launch drone attacks on the people of Pakistan in the name of the so-called war on terror. The present regime also continued with Musharraf’s policies and allowed much larger number of drone attacks than before.

WikiLeaks had revealed that Prime Minister Gilani had endorsed the drones’ policy. Gilani was reported to have even said to the US officials that his government would raise hue and cry over these drone attacks for the sake of countering the public pressure.

However, of late and after the Raymond Davis episode, things became extremely tense between Washington and Islamabad with the CIA insisting to carry on with its operations, including the drone attacks inside Pakistan, while the ISI is adamant to restricting the Americans from crossing the red-line.

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CIA, ISI Ties Suffer Serious Strains

Posted by yourpakistan on January 6, 2011


US Secretary of Defence Robert Gates (L) talks to Pakistan’s Chief of Army Staff Ashfaq Kayani (R) before US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi speak during the US-Pakistan Strategic Dialogue Plenary Session at the State Department in Washington, October 22, 2010

Reuters

The critical partnership between intelligence agencies in the United States and Pakistan is under serious strain. Relations between the US Central Intelligence Agency and the Inter-Services Intelligence Directorate, Pakistan’s principal spy unit, have long been buffeted by tensions over the Pakistani agency’s alleged links to militant groups opposed to Pakistan’s historical enemy, India.

US authorities believe some of these groups are linked to anti-American militants, including al Qaeda and the Taliban.

Now, ties between spies in Washington and Islamabad are approaching a nadir, according to half a dozen US officials involved in foreign policy and counter-terrorism. They spoke to Reuters about the issue on condition of anonymity due to the sensitivity of the subject.

“We may be in a bit of a trough at the moment,” said a US official who follows the issue closely.

The officials, who are familiar with US military and intelligence operations in the region, say several factors have contributed to the deterioration in the US-Pakistani intelligence relationship over the past year.

One sore point is the Pakistani government’s reluctance to expand Pakistani military operations against militants beyond the tribal region of South Waziristan into neighboring North Waziristan.

The US officials interviewed by Reuters said they also remained concerned that elements of ISI continue to back militants who, if not directly involved in operations against US forces in Afghanistan, may be providing shelter and other support for anti-American Taliban and al Qaeda operatives.

The officials said they regard with increasing seriousness allegations by a convicted American suspect, David Headley, who accused ISI of involvement in the November 2008 commando attack by Pakistani militants on civilian targets in Mumbai.

US intelligence experts had hoped that the head of the ISI, General Ahmed Shuja Pasha, and his mentor, Pakistani Army chief General Ashfaq Kayani, would dramatically curb what they called ISI dealings with militants. But said they have been disappointed by the Pakistani officials’ performance.

Some of the US officials complained that their ISI contacts have been less than candid in explaining what they alleged as the ISI’s continuing involvement with militants.

They said the relationship between ISI and their US counterparts hit a low point when the CIA was forced to withdraw its top officer in Pakistan late last year after his name was published by Pakistani media.

Serious breach of trust

A US official who formerly worked with ISI on counter-terrorism operations said to his knowledge no such leak had previously occurred, even though ISI was well aware of the identities of CIA operatives working in Pakistan. The leak of the operative’s name is regarded by US intelligence officials as a serious breach of trust.

The US officials said they believed elements of ISI leaked the CIA station chief’s identity in retaliation for the filing of three lawsuits in federal court in Brooklyn, New York by families of Mumbai attack victims.

The suits allege that ISI’s Pasha and other agency operatives were involved with Lashkar-i-Taiba (LT), an anti-India militant group, in planning and orchestrating the attacks.

James Kreindler, a lawyer for the attack victims, told Reuters he had served legal papers on the ISI chief and other defendants in Pakistan. Pakistan’s government has said it will “strongly contest” the litigation.

A spokesman for the Pakistani embassy in Washington denied any problems in the relationship between the ISI and the CIA.

“It’s absolutely baseless to assume that ISI-CIA relations are under stress. To the contrary, their relations have expanded, improved and are at their best ever,” he said in an email.

George Little, a CIA spokesman, said: “Naturally, the CIA values strong engagement with our Pakistani counterparts, especially as we work together in the fight against al Qaeda and other terrorist groups who threaten our country and theirs.”

Some US officials say that while US-Pakistan intelligence relationship now may be greatly strained, tensions between the reluctant partners ebb and flow in cycles.

“The intelligence partnership between Pakistan and the United States is fraught with complexity,” one American official said.

The official said that while the relationship had “gone through a bit of a sine wave of relative ups and downs,” over time, “those shifts have become less dramatic.”

Counter-terrorism experts say that the US and Pakistani intelligence services are too dependent on each other to allow current strains to deteriorate to a breaking point.

“In any type of shotgun marriage, there are ups and downs,” said Roger Cressey, a former counterterrorism adviser to Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush. “This is a low period that the relationship will weather.”

 

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Terrorism or Democracy?

Posted by yourpakistan on November 11, 2010


By Raja Chemayel

Alexander of Macedonia, the son of the first and son of the greatest democracy , once terrorised and robbed the whole world !!

Let us , for the sake of the argument
gather all the freedom-fighters ,
all liberation-movements
all mujaheddin and all insurgents worldwide ,
and especially in the Middle East…..
we shall call them : Coalition of TERRORISM

on the other hand , we shall gather ,
the USA , the UK , France , Israel
and the NATO , too……
and we shall call them : Coalition of DEMOCRACY

Having done so , and having given them those names,
we shall please count :
1- How many innocent civilians were killed by each ??
2- How many countries were invaded by each ??
3- How many tons of bombs were dropped by each ??
4- How many weddings were bombed by each ??
5- Who has occupied whom ??
6- Who is holding more prisoners illegally (or even legally)
7- How many Pirates are in Somalia
and how many Pirates are outside Gaza ??
8- who assasinated Rafiq el Harriri and then blamed Syria ??
who hanged Saddam Hussein and replaced him by sectarian-maffias ??
etc…..etc……etc……

After having done this statistical-mathematical-comparison ,
you shall agree with me that :
Democracy should rather be called Terrorism !!
(at least for the time being, and until better time comes….)

 

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Pakistan Slams UK ‘Terror’ Remark

Posted by yourpakistan on July 29, 2010


Pakistan has strongly criticised David Cameron, the British prime minister, for his remark that Islamabad should not “promote the export of terror”.

British PM - Davi Cameron

Abdul Basit, a foreign ministry spokesman, on Thursday said Cameron seemed to have based his comments on leaked US documents, which he called “biased and self-serving”.“We are obviously disappointed at these comments because these are not coming from any original source, rather biased sources and I would say not even raw intelligence but disinformation against Pakistan,” he told Al Jazeera.

On a visit to India, Cameron on Wednesday said Pakistan should know “that it is not right to have any relationship with groups that are promoting terror”.

He said: “We cannot tolerate in any sense the idea that this country [Pakistan] is allowed to look both ways and is able, in any way, to promote the export of terror, whether to India or whether to Afghanistan or anywhere else in the world.” Though his comments were likely to be welcomed in India, Pakistan’s reaction has been quick and angry.

‘ISI role’

Basit strongly denied any Pakistani links with terror groups and defended Islamabad’s role.“Britain knows full well as to how Pakistan, particularly the ISI [the Pakistani intelligence service] has been extending help and assistance to Britain in thwarting so many terrorist plots in Britain.“They know the effectiveness of the ISI and our constructive and positive role in Afghanistan so we do not find any reason whatsoever for such remarks.”

Earlier, Wajid Shamsul Hasan, Pakistan’s high commissioner in London, told Al Jazeera that he had received hundreds of calls from Pakistanis, who offered “a very sharp reaction” to Cameron’s comments.

“I think Cameron will review his statement, clarify his position, because we need to be supported not criticised for what we are doing,” Hasan said.

He also refuted renewed criticism of Pakistani intelligence services over its alleged ties to Taliban, following revelations by Wikileaks,  the whistle blower website. The site leaked US government documents suggesting links between Pakistan’s security services, the Taliban and other groups operating in Afghanistan.

“ISI was one of the conduits used by the CIA and other agencies to raise these Taliban, these mujahidin, to fight the Soviets in Afghanistan. Only [the] ISI can’t be blamed for it,” he said.

Cameron’s comments came as he prepared to wrap up a two-day visit to India, which is aimed at improving bilateral trade between the two nations.

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Time For Pakistan To Exit War On Terror

Posted by yourpakistan on July 20, 2010


  • Time to take a hard line on this US-led farce called Friends of Democratic Pakistan
  • FoDP – a group that will immediately dissipate when NATO and the US pull out of Afghanistan
  • Pakistan cannot afford to remain in this US-led mess of a war anymore since the costs on all fronts are too great
  • IMF and the economic managers imposed on us will lead Pakistan further down the road to economic disaster

The Friends of Democratic Pakistan met in Islamabad on Saturday and Pakistan’s Foreign Minister informed them of the losses suffered by Pakistan in terms of civilian and military personnel killed, as well as the financial losses due to lost markets, investments and trade. He also made it clear that unless the FoDP fulfilled its commitments, Pakistan could not, as he put it, “win” the war against terror.

Apparently, there was an agreement to start implementing the Integrated Energy Sector Recovery Report. However, the real point was once again missed by the FoDP and it would seem by the Pakistani government as well: that unless Pakistan is given the access to the markets of the US and EU, it will continue to suffer economically because of the disastrous US-led “war on terror”.

Already, since 9/11 Pakistan has suffered losses of over $ 43 billion. Even more critical, it has lost 3000 civilians, and 2,550 security personnel as well as over 7000 citizens injured. And no one has tallied up the costs to the environment and the social structures of the country.

In other words, what the Pakistani government should be doing is informing the FoDP that it simply cannot afford to remain in this US-led mess of a war anymore since the costs on all fronts are too great and the main players like the US have failed to live up to any of their commitments. As for the FoDP, they have been holding continuous meetings but nothing substantive has come Pakistan’s way from them. In fact, the IMF and World Bank continue to insist on distortions in our economy that target the poor more than the rich. If anything, the IMF and the economic managers thrust on the country by them will lead Pakistan further down the road to economic disaster and political instability. It is time Pakistan took a hard line posture towards what is fast becoming the farce of the FoDP.

Not that that mere economic assistance would have reduced the costs for Pakistan. Certainly access to markets would have had a more enduring positive spin off. But at the end of the day, what is required is for Pakistan to delink itself from the US-led war against terrorism and devise its own strategies taking into account ground realities so that we can fight our extremist and terrorist threats more effectively. This is what the Foreign minister should have told the FoDP – a group that will immediately dissipate when NATO and the US pull out of Afghanistan, leaving Pakistan with the collateral damage. Already US troops are suffering a major morale problem and June 2010 saw the highest number of US army suicides than in any month since the Vietnam War and things will not improve for the US military. That is why it is desperate to extricate itself from its Afghan mess. It is time Pakistan realized the US game plan and began distancing itself from the US which seeks to shift the centre of gravity of the whole war on to Pakistan and its territory. That is simply unacceptable. posted in The Nation

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From Times Square to Jacksonville: When Terrorism Is a Double-Standard

Posted by yourpakistan on May 28, 2010


As we all know, the first of this month a crude bomb almost went off in Times Square. It was an attempted terrorist attack by a less than competent 30-year-old finance professional, an American citizen of Pakistani origin who’d recently lost his Connecticut home to foreclosure and gone radical. The man was caught 56 hours after the bomb was discovered. The hurricane of media attention lasted about two weeks. The political consequences of the attack continue, with the usual other radicals in Congress and their amen rabble on Fox seizing on the plot to declare America under attack and constitutional guarantees of due process an even bigger threat to America than terrorism.

Amazing how easily one-off dimwits with bombs can scare off the country that likes to think of itself as the strongest on the planet. That’s what happens when the dimwits are Muslim and the targets are recognizably American. It’s a different story when tables are reversed and Muslims are the target.

Few of you know that 10 days after the attempted terrorist attack in Times Square, an actual terrorist attack took place in Jacksonville when a firebomb exploded outside the city’s biggest mosque, the Islamic Center of Northeast Florida. Some 60 worshippers were praying inside when the bomb went off and started a fire. No one was injured. The bomber is still at large.

The Jacksonville Times-Union did an admirable job of covering the story and editorializing against whatever anti-Islamic motives are polluting Northeast Florida. But aside from the Times-Union and a few broadcast media in the city, that terrorist attack drew almost no attention from the national media and barely more than passing mention in state newspapers. The Southern Poverty Law Center, which tracks every hate crime in the country, has yet to take note of the Jacksonville attack. The FBI is on the case, but even the $5,000 reward it put up looks half-hearted compared to the $12,000 the New York City Police Department put up in the search for the Times Square bomber. The FBI didn’t put up the reward in Jacksonville until four days ago, and only when the mosque, a church and a national Islamic organization each put in $5,000 of their own.

Double standards are the collateral damage of that dumb war too many people continue to imagine as a “war on terror.” You can’t wage war on terror. Terror is a tactic. It’s nobody’s monopoly. On American soil, the terrorists-from the Oklahoma City bomber to the Fort Hood attacker to the Times Square bomber to, most likely, the Jacksonville bomber-are American. There’s convenience in creating a false sense of security by identifying Islam as the evil and Americans as the good guys. But it’s demonstrably not true.

The Jacksonville attack didn’t happen in a vacuum. For several weeks in April and May a controversy was contrived out of the Jacksonville City Council’s nomination of Parvez Ahmed to the city’s Human Rights Commission. Ahmed is a Fulbright Scholar and a University of North Florida professor with decades of public service to his name, as well as a long history of condemning terrorism, starting with a September 14, 2001 letter in a Pennsylvania newspaper calling the 9/11 attacks “senseless” and any use of religious labels to describe terrorists “an affront.” But Ahmed is a Muslim. Turn on the sirens.

“ACT! for America” is a hate group founded by Lebanese Islamophobe Brigitte Gabriel, who sees a terrorist beneath every turban. It’s her way of selling books and making money. When her act gets cold, she scavenges a cause and cashes in on the publicity. She found one in Ahmed’s nomination. Her Jacksonville chapter launched a McCarthy-era-like attack on Ahmed, concocting slanderous allegations about him having ties to terrorist groups by connecting more dregs than dots. Stupidity loves company. ACT’s slanders found support on the Jacksonville city council, particularly City Councilman Don Redman, who shamed his city by demanding that Ahmed publicly “say a prayer to your God.” It’s only when the council began worrying that an image of intolerance might hurt business in Jacksonville that it approved the Ahmed nomination on a still-shameful 13-6 vote. One of those votes belonged to Glorious Johnson, who feared that Ahmed’s nomination was dividing the city and causing others to refer to it, in her words, as “this hick town.” Her vote was among the reasons why.

Less than two weeks later, Ahmed’s mosque was firebombed. If the message wasn’t directed exclusively at Ahmed, it certainly was at the region’s 15,000 Muslims. This wasn’t swastikas on a wall. It wasn’t insults cowardly spat out of a speeding car. It was a firebomb. It was an act of terror against Muslims in Jacksonville. It’s no different than if your local church or Times Square had been firebombed. But of course it’s been different. When the target happens to be Muslim, whether it’s Jacksonville or anywhere else in the world, the attack is beneath concern, because the last thing anyone wants to admit is that hate and terror have their American franchises in spades.

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What CIA ‘Analysts’ Are Doing In Kohat And FATA?

Posted by yourpakistan on May 7, 2010


o   Foreign Minister Qureshi should stay in Pakistan more to see the dried up riverbeds instead of
advocating  India’s case

o   With such antics by the government it is not simply that we are destroying our country for the
achievements  of US goals, but are effectively we are fast being reduced to a joke.
Meet the foreign minister of India: “India is not stealing our water,” says Mr. Shah Mehmood Qureshi [No, it’s not Kumari, we checked!]

Remember how US was desperate for visas and US media leaks decried ‘harassment’ from Pakistan? Our government capitulated as usual and that’s how tens and probably hundreds of CIA ‘analysts’ entered Pakistan recently. Blackwater’s twin sister DynCorp is also here, precisely 9 kilometers away from Pakistan’s most important nuclear buildings. The new F-16s coming to Pakistan will come with US ‘supervisors’ who will ensure we don’t ‘misuse’ the planes. Who in Islamabad is playing this cruel joke with our nation?Just examining a few recent developments and news revelations from the US shows how the ridiculous is increasingly becoming the norm in Pakistan’s relations with the US and India.Let us take the US first.
Last week The Washington Post (30 April) had a story by Greg Miller on how the CIA had a new strategy of stationing more analysts overseas. As he described it:
“The CIA’s overseas expansion since Sept. 11, 2001, has mainly been evident on the operations side, with more case officers, more drone strikes and the distribution of a lot more cash. But the agency also has been sending abroad more employees from its less-flashy directorate, in what officials described as a major shift in how the agency trains and deploys its analysts.”
According to his story, “hundreds” of CIA analysts are already in overseas assignments. Pakistan, of course, has been especially targeted on this count with CIA officials being discovered as far afield as Kohat and in FATA also. It is no wonder that the US was desperate that Pakistan expedite the hundreds of US visa applications and Prime Minister Gilani obliged on the eve of his departure to Washington for the so-called strategic dialogue. Not much happened strategically for Pakistan but certainly a whole lot of CIA agents got their visas and are now scouring the territory of Pakistan. What is even more disturbing is that the private security agencies are also still present all over including DynCorp in Sihala, but the Government is unprepared to exercise any sovereign control on these issues. Apparently DynCorp has refused to move out of Sihala despite being shown alternatives – and the general view is that Sihala offers the ideal location for them to monitor Pakistan’s nuclear installations.

It has also now become public that DynCorp not only came along with the US anti-narcotic program in Pakistan but, according to the information revealed as the result of a Congressional hearing recently dealing with a Pentagon audit, the US also contracted it to monitor the Pakistan-Afghan border. So they are present in FATA also. With DynCorp and third-country intelligence agencies also being brought in by the CIA – including from Muslim States of West Asia and the Gulf in Khost – and with covert organized terror groups like “Asian Tigers” the Pakistan government and military really do not have a clear idea of exactly who is doing what in the FATA region. But what has become clear is that efforts are on big time to drag the Pakistan military to a battle in North Waziristan and to bow completely before a US agenda in exchange for the proverbial “peanuts”. After all, the US has still to pay the bulk of the Coalition Support Fund for previous years and this Fund payment is Pakistan’s right as it has already incurred the costs of the services sought by the US. As for weapons allowed to be accessed by Pakistan, the much touted frigates apart from being old also have no viable weapons systems capabilities, such as surface to air missiles.

Even more ridiculous is the deal made to acquire the 18 F-16s that are expected to trickle down to Pakistan this year. According to a story in a leading US newspaper, the deal included the provision that US personnel will come with the F-16s to ensure that the hi-tech weapons and other systems are used properly! According to the story, US personnel may be on board when these planes fly!
The PAF was asked to explain this but their spokesman first went around in circles trying to show that such personnel always accompany the planes and then said he would get back with the exact provisions of the deal but never did. So clearly if we do get the F-16s (and let us not forget our sorry history on that count with the US) we will also inherit US personnel to supervise how we use these planes! Is this not a bad joke on the people of Pakistan?

This links our US appeasement with our India policy – if there is such a thing at present. It is surely a first that a Pakistani Prime Minister, instead of pleading the cause of Pakistan, pleads the Indian Prime Minister’s cause to the Pakistanis as well as defending India on the water issue by saying that India is not stealing our share of river water. Perhaps if the Foreign Minister stayed long enough in Pakistan he would be able to see the dried up river beds. But then the present government is faithfully following the US agenda for us including peace talks with India on a new agenda since India has cast aside the composite dialogue. It is also a supreme irony that having condemned the Musharraf economic policies, the Musharraf economic team is slowly being brought back into action and at more senior positions!

With such antics by the government it is not simply that we are destroying our country for the achievements of US goals, but are effectively we are fast being reduced to a joke. By SHIREEN M. MAZARI

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Are All Pakistanis Terrorists?

Posted by yourpakistan on May 4, 2010


Clearly it’s a nonsensical headline.

But a quick glance across news headlines on Tuesday May 4 reveals the two top stories are both about young Pakistani men, one a resident of Lahore, the other with a background similar to mine, a Western citizen of Pakistani descent.
The first has been convicted with terrorism offences in India, the second arrested in connection with the Times Square foiled bomb attempt.

Now, I have no idea whether the chap arrested in connection with New York offence is a terrorist or not. But it almost does not matter.

Form of racism

Pakistanis and those of Pakistani descent are once again under the spotlight. It’s a form of racism and anger building because of it.  I travel a lot. In the last eight months I have visited the US a number of times. Each time I have been pulled into secondary immigration, a sort of holding pen whilst your validity to enter the US is checked out. It takes at least three hours and after a 14-hour flight is not a welcome proposition.

Same questions

The questions are always the same: Why are you here? Who are you visiting? My answers inevitably are always  the same. No matter, each time I had to go through the process. A visa application of mine to a country I won’t name has been put through a much more stringent process because I am of Pakistani descent.  In 2005, I travelled to Israel, where yet again I was stopped and asked several questions about my family background. It was just after the 7/7 bombings in London. A crime committed by, as you probably recall, British men of Pakistani descent.

I arrived having travelled through Jordan. I was carrying a  British passport, holding $10,000 in cash (for our bureaux, not personal funds, I might add). My full Name is Mohammed Imran Khan and I work for Al Jazeera. Oh, and I was carrying a rucksack, the favoured delivery method of the 7/7 bombers. It took me five hours to clear customs. I was never told why.

How things are

Trifling, I know, when compared to the Palestinian experience, but indicative of how things are. In the American Colony Hotel in East Jerusalem, I bumped in to fairly well known BBC reporter and former colleague of mine. I told him the story of my crossing.

“What do you expect,” he said. “You are Pakistani.”

Except I am not. I am British. In the UK, where I was born and have lived the vast majority of my life, I was stopped and searched. Once, when I was working for that most British of Institutions, the BBC, I was stopped filming when a nosey policeman ran my name through the system. It was clearly red flagged. His response was terse when I requested to get on  with my job. “You are in our system” he said. The BBC to their credit took up the matter with the police, but I  have no idea whether it made any difference.

It is frustrating. But I  have got used to my status of being of Pakistani descent not being a plus point. For others, though, it breeds anger and resentment.

Subject of Pakistan

Three weeks ago I was staying in New York, just few blocks away from Times Square. I was sitting  with a friend, just talking about everything and nothing as one does. The subject of Pakistan came up and I shared my thoughts. The bartender overheard our conversation and said something startling to me: “Do you know where Bin Laden is?”

I was shocked, but not surprised. My American  friend, however, carefully picked up his vodka and cranberry juice, took a small sip and then poured the rest of it on the floor. He then opened his wallet, left a large tip and walked silently out of the bar. He later told me that he felt it was simple racism that he would not tolerate.

My Pakistani friends across the West often complain of racism. Pakistan has become terror central and it’s most public export is terrorism, it would seem.

Plurality of Pakistan

I have long given up trying to explain to people about the plurality of Pakistan and the Pakistani diaspora. I have long given up on trying to talk about how Pakistan’s biggest export into India is pop music, how Pakistani fashion designers produce beautiful collections that sell for thousands of dollars all over the world, of how Pakistani artists are producing some incredible and very modern work.

No, I listen as people rail against my background, accuse me of being a terrorist or the very least a terrorist sympathiser.  But here is the rub. Ancient cultures are littered with references to something called a “self-fulfilling prophecy’. Call someone something and they eventually become that thing. Call Pakistanis terrorist and guess what? You will have Pakistani terrorists.

Anger builds

It’s a simplistic argument, but when faced with visa delays, when asked personal questions about my background from Po-faced border guards, when stopped and searched by police officers, an anger does build. My protestations about being British don’t count. They see my skin colour and my name and they see one thing. A threat. I smile and hope common sense prevails, and to be fair it often does.

But as Pakistani terror fills the headlines, I wonder how long it will be before this kind of racism becomes normal.

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NYC Failed Bomb: A Mossad False-Flag Gone Wrong?

Posted by yourpakistan on May 3, 2010


There is no evidence the failed attempt to detonate a car bomb in New York was the work of al-Qaeda or any other big terrorist group, the city’s mayor says. Michael Bloomberg spoke after police dismissed claims by a Pakistani Taliban group that it was responsible. Investigators are hunting a middle-aged white man seen removing his shirt near the scene at Times Square on Saturday evening and stuffing it into a bag.

Investigators have been gathering evidence from the Nissan Pathfinder in which the homemade petrol and propane bomb was found. The subsequent claim in an internet video by the Pakistan based TTP (Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan) came as a surprise to many analysts and experts, and was unanimously dismissed as being untrue. However, the attempt to claim the incident in itself does raise serious questions and confirms what many in the Pakistan intelligence circles have come to believe – that the TTP, which is not part of the original Afghan Taliban, is working on a CIA/RAW/Mossad agenda.

From their choice of targets to the indiscriminate mass murder that the TTP has carried out in Pakistan in the last few years, they have made enemies even with some of the oldest and well established militant groups in Pakistan and Afghanistan, including the Afghan Taliban and the Kashmir based Lashkar-e-Taiba. Many of the captured TTP militants have confirmed being trained in Afghanistan in facilities run by Indian nationals, working in Afghanistan under the disguise of aid and development workers, and the Afghan national army – under the ubmrella of ISAF.

Both Mullah Omar and Gulbaddin Hekmatyar have repeateldy distanced themselves from the TTP, confirming that it was being funded by the Americans and Israelis, and trained by the Indians.It is also important to note that the Afghan Taliban is a national resistance movement and has never been involved in, nor claimed, any terrorist attacks anywhere in the world.

The attempt to bomb a popular tourist spot in New York City was aimed at causing murder and terror at a mass scale, which coupled with the TTP’s attempt to claim the incident would have made the American case stronger for putting boots inside Pakistan or even pushing the Pakistani military to go after the Afghan Taliban in Northern Waziristan, something that the Pakistan Army has rejected outright.  By Dan Qayyum

Must read: When Will Israel Attack The USA Again? (Jeff Gates)

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