Friday, October 16, 2009


* 11 killed in suicide attack near a mosque in the cantonment area in Peshawar on Friday.

* 41 killed in simultaneous attacks on Police training academy Manavan, elite commando training centre and the Federal Investigations Agency (FIA) headquarters in Pakistan. The attacks were carried out by the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan.

* Over 100 killed last week in attacks on the Pakistan army headquarters (GHQ) Rawalpindi, United Nations Food Programme Office in Islamabad and in the Peshawar market.


And yet Pakistan considers India its biggest enemy. Pakistan is like a drug addict. It knows terror is bad for its existence but is unable to kick the addiction. The military establishment and the ISI are addicted to terror. Terror gave Pakistan a high initially. Pakistani army generals felt on top of the world - literally invincible. That's exactly how drug users feel initially. On a high. And before you know it you are sucked in the trap. You keep thinking you are not a slave of the drug - the day you want you can kick off the habit. But suddenly it is too late.

For the Pakistani military establishment it is too late. That's why even after the attack on the General Headquarters in Pakistan - the biggest slap in the face of the Pakistan army chief General Ashfaq Pervez Kayani - the country is dithering on cracking down on terror. For a country that takes immense pride in its army - a brigadier and a lieutenant colonel were killed by terrorists - the enemy is still not terror but India.

Only a drug addict does not know what is good for it and what is not. Not only does General Ashfaq Pervez Kayani consider Taliban a strategic ally, the army refuses to permit the government to even consider taking action against the professor of terror Hafiz Mohammed Saeed. In fact he is still invited to the Rawalpindi Corps Iftaar party. Saeed continues to be a General of the Pakistan army - minus uniform. The Pakistani security establishment is addicted to the Lashkar e Taiba. The terror outfit continues to be an arm of the Pakistan army.

Who is paying the price for this fatal addiction? the common man on the street in Pakistan and in India. The hundreds of people who are being killed on the streets of Islamabad, Rawalpindi, Peshawar, Kohat, Swat and in Waziristan are all Pakistani citizens paying the price of their army's teror addiction. But what is disturbing is the fact that the political leadership of Pakistan continues to be timid, weak and in effective. They appear to be mere pawns in the hands of the powerful military commanders. the judiciary and the civil society that rose in a remarkable protest against General Pervez Musharraf seem to be running out of steam or scared to take on the lethal combination of military commanders and taliban militia.


Why do security analysts feel Pakistan is not sincere about cracking down on teror ? Because even after Baitullah Mehsud was killed in a US drone attack, the Pakistani army well positioned to move in for the mopping up operations refused to do so. Instead it let the situation deteriorate. When Taliban commanders were fighting a bitter succession war, the army remained a mute spectator and sources say elements within the ISI actually tried to find a suitable boy to take over Mehsud's mantle.

Pakistan army generals still nurture the dream of re-gaining the strategic depth in Afghanistan when the US forces withdraw ``like in Vietnam''. Therefore, they do not want to eliminate the entire Taliban leadership. Pakistan is only cracking down on the Taliban elements who no longer believe in taking instructions from the ISI. So the moment Baitullah Mehsud started thinking and operating independently of the ISI, he became the bad Taliban. Remember even Benazir Bhutto had accused elements within the ISI and Pakistan army of colluding with Mehsud to kill her.


Strategic depth in Afghanistan is the reason that despite repeated attacks within Pakistan, its all powerful army is not willing to order a total crack down in the Af-Pak region. How can the Pakistan army order a crack down on the Taliban when they are seeking Taliban assistence in attacking Indian and Afghan interests in Afghanistan. US convoys and interests are repeatedly under attack by the Taliban. Is that possible if the Pakistan army seriously proceeds against them.

To justify getting the US aid, Pakistan army does go after the pawns and the foot soldiers in the Taliban but never the top commanders. On 8th October 2009, ISI used the Taliban once again to attack the Indian embassy in Kabul. Afghan Ambassador to the US Said T. Jawad went on record to blame the ISI for the latest attack on the Indian embassy.

This was the second attack on the Indian embassy in 15 months. both India and the US claim they have evidence of ISI involvement in the earlier attack on the Indian embassy in Kabul. In fact the US claimed the ISI masterminded the July 7, 2008 attack on the Indian embassy in Kabul. India's defence attache, a senior diplomat and ITBP personnel guarding the embassy were among 58 killed in the attack.

India has pledged $1.2 billion for the reconstruction of Afghanistan, making it the sixth largest bilateral donor and this is bad news for those Pakistani generals who are seeking that strategic depth. For the sake of ensuring the US war on terror fails they are still willing to bleed their own people.


Al Qaeda and Taliban are growing in strength in Pakistan. Repeated attacks in Rawalpindi, Islamabad, Lahore and Peshawar are indications that the terrorists are not limited to Af-Pak border. They can strike at will deep inside the most secure locations inside the heart of Pakistan. After all what can be more secure than the office of the chief of the Pakistan Army - the General Headquarters. This is not the first attack on the GHQ - but the most audacious one beyond doubt.

The Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) has sent a clear signal in attacking the FIA office, the elite commando training centre and the police training academy Manawan. They have attacked the very fortress of anti-terror operations.

Pakistan is now gearing up to attack the Taliban in South Waziristan. Air operations will be easy. Pakistan Air Force will pound terror camps from the skies. But the real war will begin when the Pakistan army puts more boots on ground.

But for victory in those operation - the Pakistan army commanders will need to decide who their real enemy is - terrorists or India. And if India is still their answer - then the addiction is complete. Then the cancer of terror affecting the Pakistan army is in terminal stage.

Most security analysts feel the cancer is in its terminal stage... but that are still those who feel the civil society can once again rise to the occasion and force Pakistan's all powerful army to stop playing the double game - realise the true enemy is not India but terror. It is for their own good.If not for themselves then KHUDA KE LIYE...WAKE UP!

1 comment:

  1. A very detailed well delibrated expose of Pakistan's dilemmaof whether to live or die. The great muslim (not Islamic) samurai is on the verge of Harakiri, for it knows not whether to live or die hereafter. It is not easy for Pakistan and its people to shake of the deeply ingrained idea of existence of a India as a hindu majority state beyond the reach of rulers in Islamabad, the great inheritors aand perhaps descendants of the Moghal heritage. The very existence of India creates a crisis of Identity for the nation state of Pakistan.With adequate support from China a blundering west and their Knights running the crusade for them, they hope to achieve their God bestowed supemacy one day. But This dream has a basic problem, it is far removed from realities in that
    (a) India with its mass and resurgent geo-political assets is beyond the grasp of Knights at Arms of Pakisani Crusade.
    (b) For awhile China can draw consolation by proping Pakistan against India but it kows what will appen when Taliban enter Afghnistan. The crusaders would be too close for comfot, to the muslim dominated frontiers of China and the nascent revolt of muslims is almost transforming itself in to visible reality.
    (c) The west can afford a bit more and live in its make believe cuckoo land but the expansion of resurgent Islamic Fundamentalism is already deeply entenched in its heartland and is waiting to explode
    This does not preclude the ordeals of India as a nation. We have to brace ourselves for a long winter. To resolve the issue of our survivol we have to deal first with China the mother Goddess of Pakistan. As long as the the Pak military ambition keeps getting its life giving tranfusions from the Dragon, they are unlikely to be tamed.
    I congratulate you for focusing on these vital issues and keeping the nation informed. Well done