About 25 countries have promised to send more troops to Afghanistan in response to President Obama’s call for extra support from Nato members. But France and Germany, the two European powers who could make a real difference, remain as hesitant as ever.
French and German leaders now face a painful choice. Should they finally embrace Nato’s efforts in Afghanistan more wholeheartedly – which would mean accepting significantly more human and material sacrifices? Or should they or conclude that the war has already been lost, or that “success” does not merit the cost, and abandon the mission altogether?
For their own good, they should choose the first option. They should remember that unlike the war in Iraq, which they strongly opposed from the outset, all Nato member states, including themselves, unanimously and unambiguously sanctioned the war effort in Afghanistan in 2001. But aside from the need to fulfil their alliance duties – and in fact even more important – they have clear national interests at stake in this strategically located central Asian state.
This is not about just about pre-empting future terrorist attacks on European capitals by stopping the Taliban from retaking the country. At stake in Afghanistan is the survival of the transatlantic alliance, Europe’s energy security and independence, and whether the deepening ties between Europe – especially Germany – and Russia, will eventually lead to the western integration of Russia, or instead, to it gaining a stranglehold over European energy security. In Afghanistan all three issues are interlinked. This fact remains largely ignored.
Let me explain: Afghanistan is a crucial energy transit corridor in central Asia, potentially connecting the energy-rich central Asian republics with the Arabian Sea and/or the Indian Ocean. Stabilising Afghanistan – not just temporarily to justify withdrawal, but for good – is crucial for the anticipated Trans-Afghanistan pipeline from Turkmenistan to India (known as Tapi) to be built and its security to be guaranteed.
The construction of Tapi is essential for Europe to diversify its energy supplies and reduce its dependence on oil and gas imports from the Gulf and Russia. Failure in Afghanistan, and by extension in Pakistan, would mean abandoning the construction of Tapi and in turn, pave the way for Russia to reassert its former hegemony in the region.
Should this transpire, European dependence on Russian-controlled energy supplies would increase hugely, giving Russia unprecedented leverage over Europe, both economically and politically. A Russia-dependent Europe would damage the transatlantic relationship beyond repair, wean the Europeans away from their former American partner, and split the west into two.
On the other hand, should the mission in Afghanistan succeed and Tapi be built, Europe could continue to deepen its economic and political ties with Russia without running the risk of falling hostage to Russia’s geostrategic ambitions (which are still very much alive); it would allow Europe to progressively integrate Russia into a united west.
Despite the emphasis in public on the need for more military assistance, the US knows that France and Germany will not be able to raise troop levels to any meaningful level. President Obama’s plea should rather be understood as a more general call for Europeans to do more – namely, to significantly increase their financial support and to bring their technical knowhow and nation-building expertise to bear. But most importantly, the US wants Europe to unmistakably embrace the US and Nato mission in Afghanistan publicly, in order to demonstrate revived western unity and strength.
Maybe the time has now come for French and German leaders to realise that the interests at stake in Afghanistan far outweigh the costs involved in pursuing them, and ensure that in a few years down the line the newspaper headlines will read “Mission accomplished” rather than “Afghanistan: where the west went to die – and did”.
With the Lisbon treaty finally having staggered into life, potentially endowing the EU with the political clout in the international arena it has long sought, both France and Germany are now hard-pressed to prove that they can live up to the responsibilities that great power entails.
Washington Post Staff Writer
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
The surge of 30,000 U.S. troops into Afghanistan could be accompanied by a surge of up to 56,000 contractors, vastly expanding the presence of personnel from the U.S. private sector in a war zone, according to a study by the Congressional Research Service.
CRS, which provides background information to members of Congress on a bipartisan basis, said it expects an additional 26,000 to 56,000 contractors to be sent to Afghanistan. That would bring the number of contractors in the country to anywhere from 130,000 to 160,000.
The tally "could increase further if the new [administration] strategy includes a more robust construction and nation building effort," according to the report, which was released Monday and first disclosed on the Web site Talking Points Memo.
The CRS study says contractors made up 69 percent of the Pentagon’s personnel in Afghanistan last December, a proportion that "apparently represented the highest recorded percentage of contractors used by the Defense Department in any conflict in the history of the United States." As of September, contractor representation had dropped to 62 percent, as U.S. troop strength increased modestly.
As the Pentagon contracts out activities that previously were carried out by troops in wartime, it has been forced to struggle with new management challenges. "Prior to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, contracting was done on an ad-hoc basis and was not adequately incorporated into the doctrine — or culture — of the military," according to the CRS report. Today, according to Defense Department officials, "doctrine and strategy are being updated to incorporate the role of contractors in contingency operations."
The Pentagon’s Joint Contracting Command in Afghanistan has increased the size of its acquisition workforce and is adding staff to monitor performance. To enhance oversight, Congress has appropriated $8 million for an electronic system that will track all contract-related information for Iraq and Afghanistan.
On Thursday, the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs ad-hoc subcommittee on contracting oversight, led by Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.), is scheduled to hold a hearing on the increase in the number and value of Afghanistan contracts. She plans to focus on ensuring that contracts are adequately managed and "whether contracting oversight lessons learned from Iraq are being applied in Afghanistan," according to her staff members.
Contracts, in the meantime, continue to be solicited and awarded. Over the past week, the military awarded a $44.8 million contract to a Florida firm to provide dogs and their handlers for operational use in areas of southern Afghanistan along the Pakistan border, where some of the most violent fighting is taking place.
The U.S. command in Afghanistan also published a notice that it would be seeking intelligence analyst services from a contractor that include "collecting, analyzing and providing recommendations necessary for the government to produce and disseminate intelligence products in several subject areas." The contract would be for one year, plus options for four additional years.
The Defense Logistics Agency disclosed that it is looking for a contractor that can provide distribution and warehousing services for U.S. and NATO forces in the Kandahar area, which is near the center of fighting. The contractor is to supply the workforce needed to receive, store, inventory and prepare shipment of up to 4,000 items using government-provided warehousing facilities and open storage areas.
In Fact, Buy a Lifetime Supply of Them!
By J. Speer-Williams
by Eric deCarbonnelIf you read any economic, financial, or political analysis for 2010 that doesn’t mention the food shortage looming next year, throw it in the trash, as it is worthless. There is overwhelming, undeniable evidence that the world will run out of food next year. When this happens, the resulting triple digit food inflation will lead panicking central banks around the world to dump their foreign reserves to appreciate their currencies and lower the cost of food imports, causing the collapse of the dollar, the treasury market, derivative markets, and the global financial system. The US will experience economic disintegration.
The 2010 Food Crisis Means Financial Armageddon
Over the last two years, the world has faced a series of unprecedented financial crises: the collapse of the housing market, the freezing of the credit markets, the failure of Wall Street brokerage firms (Bear Stearns/Lehman Brothers), the failure of Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae, the failure of AIG, Iceland’s economic collapse, the bankruptcy of the major auto manufacturers (General Motors, Ford, and Chrysler), etc… In the face of all these challenges, the demise of the dollar, derivative markets, and the modern international system of credit has been repeatedly forecasted and feared. However, all these doomsday scenarios have so far been proved false, and, despite tremendous chaos and losses, the global financial system has held together.
The 2010 Food Crisis is different. It is THE CRISIS. The one that makes all doomsday scenarios come true. The government bailouts and central bank interventions, which have held the financial world together during the last two years, will be powerless to prevent the 2010 Food Crisis from bringing the global financial system to its knees.
Financial crisis will kick into high gear
So far the crisis has been driven by the slow and steady increase in defaults on mortgages and other loans. This is about to change. What will drive the financial crisis in 2010 will be panic about food supplies and the dollar’s plunging value. Things will start moving fast.
Dynamics Behind 2010 Food Crisis
Early in 2009, the supply and demand in agricultural markets went badly out of balance. The world experienced a catastrophic fall in food production as a result of the financial crisis (low commodity prices and lack of credit) and adverse weather on a global scale. Meanwhile, China and other Asian exporters, in an effort to preserve their economic growth, were unleashing domestic consumption long constrained by inflation fears, and demand for raw materials, especially food staples, exploded as Chinese consumers worked their way towards American-style overconsumption, prodded on by a flood of cheap credit and easy loans from the government.
Normally food prices should have already shot higher months ago, leading to lower food consumption and bringing the global food supply/demand situation back into balance. This never happened because the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), instead of adjusting production estimates down to reflect decreased production, adjusted estimates upwards to match increasing demand from china. In this way, the USDA has brought supply and demand back into balance (on paper) and temporarily delayed a rise in food prices by ensuring a catastrophe in 2010.
Overconsumption is leading to disaster
It is absolutely key to understand that the production of agricultural goods is a fixed, once a year cycle (or twice a year in the case of double crops). The wheat, corn, soybeans and other food staples are harvested in the fall/spring and then that is it for production. It doesn’t matter how high prices go or how desperate people get, no new supply can be brought online until the next harvest at the earliest. The supply must last until the next harvest, which is why it is critical that food is correctly priced to avoid overconsumption, otherwise food shortages occur.
The USDA—by manufacturing the data needed to keep supply and demand in balance—has ensured that agricultural commodities are incorrectly priced, which has lead to overconsumption and has guaranteed disaster next year when supplies run out.
An astounding lack of awareness
The world is blissful unaware that the greatest economic/financial/political crisis ever is a few months away. While it is understandable that general public has no knowledge of what is headed their way, that same ignorance on the part of professional analysts, economists, and other highly paid financial “experts” is mind boggling, as it takes only the tiniest bit of research to realize something is going critically wrong in agricultural market.
USDA estimates for 2009/10 make no sense
All someone needs to do to know the world is headed is for food crisis is to stop reading USDA’s crop reports predicting a record soybean and corn harvests and listen to what else the USDA saying.
Specifically, the USDA has declared half the counties in the Midwest to be primary disaster areas, including 274 counties in the last 30 days alone. These designations are based on the criteria of a minimum of 30 percent loss in the value of at least one crop in the county. The chart below shows counties declared primary disaster areas by the secretary of Agriculture and the president of the United States.
For a list of Secretarial disaster declarations, see here.
For a list of Presidential disaster declarations, see here.
The same USDA that is predicting record harvests is also declaring disaster areas across half the Midwest because of catastrophic crop losses! To eliminate any doubt that this might be an innocent mistake, the USDA is even predicting record soybean harvests in the same states (Oklahoma, Louisiana, Arkansas, and Alabama) where it has declared virtually all counties to have experienced 30 percent production losses. It isn’t rocket scientist to realize something is horribly wrong.
USDA motivated by fear of higher food prices
The USDA is terrorized by the implications of higher food prices for the US economy, most likely because it knows the immediate consequence of sharply higher food will be the collapse of the US Treasury market and the dollar, as desperate governments and central banks dump their foreign reserves to appreciate their currencies and lower the cost of food imports. Fictitious USDA estimates should be seen as proof of the dire threat posed by higher food prices, as the USDA would not have turned its production estimates into agrotesque mockery of reality if it didn’t believe the alternative to be apocalyptic.
While the USDA may be the worst offender, the United States isn’t the only government trying to downplay the food situation out of fear. As one Indian reporter writes, governments are lying about the looming food crisis.
… some experts and governments, in full cognizance of the facts, want us not to create panic and paint a picture of parched crops and a looming food crisis. This, they say, would push up food prices unnaturally, lead to hoarding and ultimately result in a situation where many more millions across the world would go hungry. And whether it is the developing world or the developed, it is those at the bottom of the pyramid who are the most affected in such scenarios.
This leads to a confusing divide between reality and government pronouncements, or even between the perspectives of government departments
Confusing divide between reality and government estimates
For months now, the media has been reporting two distinctly, contradicting realities. One of these realities is filled with record crops and plentiful supply, and the other is filledagricultural devastation and ruin. It has been a mad, frustrating experience to read about agricultural disasters and horrendous crop losses in virtually every state combined with predictions of a US record harvest, sometimes in the same article.
A Reality of record crops and plentiful supply
The accepted, “official” reality is found in USDA crop and WASDE reports. Here, the United States Department of Agriculture is projecting the largest US soy crop on record, at 3.3 billion bushels, and the second-largest corn crop at 12.9 billion bushels. (READ FULL FRIGHTENING REPORT HERE)
Upon the orders of Obama, the military warplanes on Thursday blanketed two camps in the North of the Yemeni capital, Sana’a, claiming there were “an imminent attack against a US asset was being planned,” ABC News quoted anonymous administration officials as saying on Friday.
The US air raids were then followed by a Yemeni ground forces attack.
The operation led to the death of around 120 people of whom many were civilians, including children, the report quoted Yemeni opposition as saying.
Obama also contacted Yemen’s President, Ali Abdullah Saleh, after the blitz in order to “congratulate” him on his efforts against ‘al-Qaeda,’ the US news outlet quoted White House officials as telling reporters earlier.
The latest development comes in the wake of recently intensified attacks on the country’s Shia Houthi fighters which has brought about a dire humanitarian situation in northern Yemen.
So far, the US officials have categorically denied any direct involvement in the air strikes on Houthi fighters, alleging they have only targeted growing al-Qaeda training camps, mostly located in southern parts of the Persian Gulf state. Yemen’s Houthi fighters however insist US fighter jets have been bombing their region, claiming the lives of civilians in their air raids.
The reports of the US military intervention in Yemen come as Saudi Arabia has also been lending full support to the Yemeni government’s crackdown on Yemen’s Houthi minority.
Yemen’s Shia minority have recently slammed foreign military intervention in Yemen and the United Nations’ apathy on the humanitarian situation and the “siege on civilians in northern Yemen.”
International aid agencies and some UN bodies including United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) have voiced concern over the dire condition of the Yemeni civilians who have become the main victims of the conflict in the country.
The United Nations, which according to its charter is set up “to take effective collective measures for the prevention and removal of threats to peace, and for the suppression of acts of aggression or other breaches of the peace,” has failed to adopt any concrete measures to help end the bloody war.
A report issued by the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA) has claimed that Palestinians in the West Bank are not able to build on almost 44% of the occupied territory. The reason, claims UNOCHA, is that the occupying power, Israel, says these areas are reserved for the Israeli occupation forces and Jewish colonist-settlers.
The report also states: “The restrictions imposed by Israel on the use of the West Bank land, particularly areas classified as “C” (which are under Israeli security and civilian control, according to the Oslo agreement), are among the causes of poor living conditions of many Palestinians, where it is difficult for them to establish basic infrastructure facilities including schools, medical clinics and others.”
Adding that tens of thousands of Palestinians, unable to obtain building permits, start construction work without them, the report’s authors say this puts the new building at risk of demolition by the occupation forces. They note that 180 such buildings belonging to Palestinians have been demolished this year alone.
UNOCHA has called upon the Israeli authorities to stop the demolition of buildings immediately and to meet the Palestinians’ needs in regards to regulating construction, to freeze all settlement activities and to dismantle existing settlements.
Source: Ramallah (Palestine) – Quds Press Service
Dec 19, 2009 – 11:25 - WAM Abu Dhabi, Dec 19th, 2009 (WAM) — Genocide and ethnic cleansing were not the only objective of the Israeli war on Gaza, it had more heinous goals that included the annihilation of the future Palestinian generations, stressed a local Arabic daily newspaper in its editorial today.
Based on new revelations about the Israeli aggression on the Mediterranean strip, ‘Al-Khaleej’ daily said that the main objective of the warfare was to target fertility and embryos of Palestinians by way of planting carcinogens in the weapons to wipe out the new generation as Israel had failed in the face of Palestinian resistance.
The effects of those cancer causing weapons will retard the population growth of the Palestinians, who fight for their homeland, said the paper.
Al Khaleej went on to express its belief that all international resolutions on Arab rights were not for implementation, but for procrastination and delay, after which they are buried in the archives of the United Nations for use as reasoning and citation whenever necessary.
The editorial entitled ‘Prison for Goldstone Report’ said that the report on war crimes committed by Israel in the Gaza Strip was released before a month and a half. At that time UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon promised to refer the report to the Security Council in “as soon as possible” after the General Assembly decided to submit it to the Council.
But the expression “as soon as possible,” seems to have a meaning different from what is commonly understood, especially when it comes to the Zionist entity which is not subject to the laws and principles. Accordingly, whenever such resolutions and international reports pertaining to it are released, time stops at the borders of that entity, without regard to international justice, international legitimacy and international law, said the paper.
The paper added that the international resolutions issued against the Zionist entity since its inception until now on the occupation, aggression and racism, have been shelved and any one of them did not find its way into implementation.
At the same time, any resolution abiding by international law was issued; it was implemented with immediate effect if the party in question were the Arabs.
The worse is that the Arabs themselves were pioneers in the implementation of these resolutions and commitments even if they were implemented against sister Arab countries. They expressed this keenness in order to assert their respect for resolutions of international legitimacy; some thing which applies to them only, said Al Khaleej.
But “the ironic fact is that there is no a single Arab state who has asked the Secretary-General of the United Nations any thing about the fate of the Goldstone Report and when the time of the “as soon as possible” will come.
The paper concluded its editorial opining that the report, which awaits its ‘as soon as possible time’, will finally land its abode to serve a life term imprisonment.
20 December 2009I had to struggle with myself to decide which of two headlines was most appropriate for this article — the one above or “The hard core of lunatics are pulling up the drawbridge”. A Jewish friend in Canada drew my attention to an article in the Jewish Ledger, an independent weekly newspaper in Westport, Connecticut. The headline over it is “Saving Israel” Expert says American Jews key to Israel’s survival.
I have rarely read such dangerous nonsense. It’s the voice of Zionism, deluded as ever, but with more than a hint of panic. The “expert” quoted is Dr. Daniel Gordis, senior vice president of the Jerusalem-based Shalem Center, which describes itself as a research and education institute. He had addressed a standing-room only crowd of close to 300 in the small sanctuary of Westport’s Conservative Synagogue.
His main point was that Israel has survived all conventional military attacks and frustrated their aims (never mind that Israel’s survival was never in question), and has reduced terrorism to a minor threat, but there is now a threat “that is capable of succeeding and against which Israel has no defense.”
What, according to Gordis, is this new threat? “The direct assault that Israel is now under by the Arabs via appeals to the world community.
This coordinated effort aims to delegitimise the Jewish state and cause it to be treated as an international pariah, whose products and scholars will be boycotted and ostracised from the international community.”
Gordis went on to say that in order to survive this new attack, “American Jews must fight in the halls of Congress and on the American campuses. This means getting involved with organisations willing to present Jewish arguments, e.g. The American Israel Political Action Committee, AIPAC.” (Its real title is The American Israel Public Affairs Committee; and “Jewish arguments” is a misrepresentation. Some Jewish arguments are opposed to Zionist arguments. Gordis wants more American Jews to present Zionist arguments).
So according to Gordis the fact that the Zionist (not Jewish) state is now being seen by a still smallish but growing number of people in the Western world as a pariah state is all the fault of the Arabs. To say that I think one has to be either a devilish spin-doctor who knows what he is saying is propaganda nonsense, or deluded close to the point of clinical madness.
The real reasons for Israel’s worsening image in the world are the extraordinary self-righteousness of its leaders, their contempt for international law and their policies, which currently amount to completing the ethnic cleansing of Palestine by stealth. That plus the fact that more and more people are beginning to see Israel for what it really is – the obstacle to peace on terms virtually all Palestinians and most other Arabs and Muslims everywhere could accept. My view is that if more American Jews take Gordis’s advice and become active in support of this Israel, they will not be saving it but assisting it to commit suicide. They’d also be exposing themselves to a charge of complicity in its crimes.
In an apparent effort to frighten more American Jews into campaigning for Israel right or wrong, Gordis reportedly said this: “If Israel were to be destroyed, American Jewry would be reduced to the bleak existence they experienced years ago in Poland or Russia.”
I can only guess at what Gordis was seeking to imply with those words. One obvious implication is that he meant something like this. If there was a turning against American Jews, and if Israel did not exist to be a refuge of last resort for them, they would be persecuted and possibly exterminated. One of my own often stated fears is that, provoked by the Zionist state’s behaviour, there could be another great turning against Jews, possibly starting in America. It follows, or so it seems to me, that the way to stop the monster of anti-Semitism going on the rampage again is not by supporting Israel on its present course as Gordis advocates.
The way is by making Americans and other Westerners among whom most Jews live aware of the difference between Judaism and Zionism, and thus why it is wrong to blame all Jews everywhere for the crimes of the hardest core Zionist few in Israel. It could also be said, and should be said, that American and other Western Jews could best protect their own real interests by distancing themselves from the monster the Zionist state has become. (And in my view was always bound to become with the failure of the major powers to control it).
Gordis is also in doubt that Israel will have to attack Iran. The notion of a nuclear-armed Iran posing an existential threat to Israel is beyond crazy. It presumes that a nuclear-armed Iran would launch a first strike against Israel. That would never happen. If it did, the whole of Iran would be obliterated. No Iranian leader is ever going to be that stupid. Not even by miscalculation.
Zionism is playing up the Iranian threat because a nuclear-armed Iran would change the balance of power in a way that prevented Israel from imposing its will on the region at no significant cost. So far as I know there were no men and women in white coats to carry Daniel away to the nearest asylum.
The Canadian friend who drew my attention to the article in the Jewish Ledger was Sid Shniad, the co-chair of Independent Jewish Voices. In my thank you email to him I commented, “What expletive deleted nonsense!” He replied, “The hard core of lunatics are pulling up the drawbridge.”
Alan Hart is a former ITN and BBC Panorama foreign correspondent who covered wars and conflicts wherever they were taking place in the world and specialised in the Middle East
Watch the video in Urdu: Plan To Assassinate Pakistan Military Commanders: Ahmed Quraishi
By AHMED QURAISHI
Sunday, 20 December 2009.
ISLAMABAD, Pakistan—The bombings in Peshawar, Rawalpindi, Lahore and Multan are part of a strategic punishment against Pakistan’s military. This punishment has now entered a new stage: a systematic program for assassinating Pakistani military commanders.
Army chief General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani was a possible target during the commando-style break-in and siege at General Headquarters in October. Maj. Gen. Mushtaq Baig was assassinated earlier this year, near GHQ. Four senior Army officers were ambushed commando-style on the streets of the Pakistani capital, one Brigadier was killed. Police arrested a suspect who is linked to DynCorp, a military contractor deployed at the US Embassy in Islamabad. The latest is the daring Dec. 4, 2009 operation targeting a mosque frequented by military officers. The attack carried the hallmarks of Special-Ops training. While at least some of the attackers were Pakistanis from the tribal belt, the training, logistics and execution were impeccable, military-style by all standards, which is the kind of training not available except in military schools. Al-Qaeda is not known to have mounted any kind of similar attacks anywhere in the world. The list of the assassinated officers in this attack was long and deadly: a serving major general, 11 serving and retired army officers, five soldiers and 13 children, most of them sons of army officers. The wounded include a retired four-star army officer.
These attacks on military commanders marked a shift that Pakistani security analysts failed to notice. Hardly any group ever existed inside Pakistan that could be a match for the Pakistani military. The attackers in all of the incidents above have shown a level of training and organization that is beyond the abilities of a loose army of bandits based in the isolated mountains of South Waziristan. The only plausible explanation for the daring attacks inside Pakistan is that a source outside Pakistan is feeding the anti-Pakistan insurgency with money, expertise, equipment and weapons in a manner that renders ineffective any countermeasures by the otherwise highly professional Pakistani military.
When this is coupled with the evidence that ISI chief Gen. Ahmed Shuja Pasha is reported to have shared with CIA director Mr. Leon Panetta in their meeting on Nov. 20, the picture gets clearer. While the US media, intelligence and politicians attack the Pakistani military and blame it for their regional troubles, a shadowy insurgent force supported by CIA, British and Indian elements in Afghanistan is used on the ground to launch direct attacks on Pakistani military officers and their families, possibly as a last-ditch effort to force the Pakistanis into compliance with US objectives.
Important segments of the Pakistani media, intelligentsia, political elite and the military remain in partial denial. But it is no longer possible – and might even be suicidal – to ignore the reality. Pakistan’s military is the only major roadblock for the Indo-US interests in the region. The Indo-US interests overlap more than the Pak-US interests. The rest is plain math.
Pakistan, and specifically the military and the ISI, are being punished for a number of things:
1. The attack on the Indian embassy in Kabul in July 2008, which killed the Indian defense attaché. United States and New Delhi blamed Pakistan and ISI. No evidence was presented.
2. The attack on Mumbai in November 2008.
3. The Jan. 2008 attack on Serena Hotel, Kabul.
This punishment is eerily similar to the events of the 1980s when a foreign power occupying Afghanistan decided to punish Pakistan. At the time, India offered its intelligence expertise on everything related to Pakistan. The Soviets were glad and the security services of their client regime in Kabul helped unleash a wave of terror across major Pakistani cities.
US-TAILORED POLITICAL INSTABILITY
The political turmoil in Islamabad is directly linked to blatant interference by United States in Pakistani politics.
US ambassador Anne W. Patterson is personally involved in meeting politicians in private houses recently to rally support for US-installed President Zardari.
Under Ms. Patterson’s guidance, US Consul Generals and other diplomats posted in Pakistan take turns every couple of weeks or so to issue belligerent press statements claiming without evidence that Pakistan is sheltering al Qaeda and Osama bin Laden. They indirectly threaten to bomb major Pakistani cities. These allegations draw little reaction from a government in Islamabad that is actively pursuing a US agenda.
This month, this Web site revealed that a handful of federal Interior Ministry officials were bribed over US$250,000 to issue illegal arms permits in a case that Ms. Patterson was personally involved in. The Personal Secretary to the Pakistani State Minister for Interior is under arrest in the case.
Pakistani officials have already told CIA chief Leon Panetta on Nov. 20 that CIA operatives are involved in supporting a wave of terrorism inside Pakistan.
NEW Delhi is busy defaming Pakistan as a state sponsor of terrorism and has gone to great lengths, including tactics like creating fake terrorists and then showing their links with Pakistan. The case of Ajmal Kasab ought to be viewed in this perspective because so far the Indian police has failed to prove that indeed he was one of the attackers of the terrorist acts in Mumbai. The failure is a big question mark on the credibility of the Indian security establishment and indicates that his case was a farce aimed at tarnishing Pakistan’s image. During the court proceedings, he said that he was actually on a visit to India to try his luck in the film industry of Bollywood. Not only that. He revealed that he was arrested by the Indian police twenty days before the attacks took place and was later tortured and forced to make a confession as one of the perpetrators of the attacks.
That the speed with which moments after the attacks the Indian propaganda machines, in league with top government officials and politicians, launched a barrage of criticism against Pakistan showed that New Delhi was acting on impulse without any facts or evidence. How could it be that without conducting any investigation the Indians could say with authority that Islamabad was behind the attacks? The charge was totally baseless and nonsensical as it wasn’t backed by any proof; but again it showed the propensity of the Indian political class to lay the blame for everything happening in their country on Pakistan and its intelligence agency ISI. The case of Ajmal Kasab is not the only example where the Indian security agencies have been involved in creating fake terrorists. Of late an Indian lawyer has exposed the police and the RAW for carrying out acts such as framing innocent people, mostly Pakistanis as terrorists. In what should be a big shame for New Delhi as well as its security establishment, the lawyer was able to prove in a court of law the innocence of two men arrested by the police on trumped up charges that they were high profile terrorists with links to Pakistan.
There have been various other instances as well, where the Indian police has been faking the evidence to get the convictions; thereby showing to the world that Pakistan was using terrorism as an instrument of state policy. The death of anti-terrorism squad chief Hemant Karkare would also confirm the same perception. While he was carrying out the investigation he had found non-Muslims to be involved in the 26/11 attacks, but was mysteriously shot dead. In the end these Indian machinations would only hurt itself and it’s standing as a democracy on the international stage.
The stage is being set for a military operation in North Waziristan, whether the Pakistani establishment likes it or not. American military heavyweights have urged the government and army to expand operations into the tribal agency, and refusals to do so have not been taken lightly.
More than US demands to eliminate the Quetta shura, and certainly more than the South Waziristan operation, the possibility of an operation in North Waziristan raises fundamental questions about the course of the US-Pakistan partnership in the war against terror. Are we fighting our war, or their war? In either case, what does victory look like? And can there be a long-term solution to militancy in this region?
For the moment, President Asif Zardari has refused to expand military operations into North Waziristan. But the US is not taking no for an answer. David Sedney, US deputy assistant secretary of defence for Pakistan and Afghanistan, has admitted that tensions between Washington and Islamabad are heightening over plans for the agency. He added that as soon as the US has ‘exact targeting information’, it will be passed on to Pakistan — and Islamabad’s cooperation is expected.
Separately, the US has stepped up drone attacks in North Waziristan; 12 of the last 15 strikes have targeted the agency. This activity may leave Pakistan with no option but to wage an offensive. After all, this summer, Hafiz Gul Bahadur, the Taliban commander in North Waziristan, called off a peace deal with the government and launched several attacks against Frontier Corps personnel owing to military incursions and ramped up drone attacks. More surgical strikes — with Pakistani complicity — could cause him to turn anti-government once again. And this time, he may extend attacks against Pakistani security forces beyond the tribal belt.
In the short term, an offensive in North Waziristan is inadvisable for several reasons: The Pakistan Army is already stretched thin across the tribal areas and the onset of winter means harsh fighting conditions. Many Taliban fleeing the South Waziristan operation sought refuge in North Waziristan, bolstering militant ranks there. Pakistani intelligence officials have also admitted that North Waziristan is something of an intel ‘black hole’. In recent weeks, the Taliban have purged their ranks of anyone suspected of being an informer; in North Waziristan alone, the agencies have lost 30 undercover operatives.
Moreover, Bahadur’s fighters and the Haqqani network, which is based in North Waziristan, pose no direct threat to the Pakistani government and security establishment — the former is primarily interested in maintaining territorial control while the latter targets coalition forces in Afghanistan. During the recent operation in South Waziristan, the northern agency largely stuck to its deal with our army to maintain neutrality and permit the safe passage of military convoys.
In the light of this status quo, US demands for Pakistan to move into North Waziristan could be critiqued for betraying a double standard. In Afghanistan, the US has emphasised a shift towards counterinsurgency (COIN). The idea is to minimise civilian casualties, win public support and differentiate between ‘good’ (manageable, reconcilable, and cooperative) and ‘bad’ (hardline, aggressive) militants.
No doubt, from the US point of view, the Haqqanis are ‘bad’ militants as they execute the most violent attacks against the International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan. But from a Pakistani perspective, the Haqqanis, who have decades-old relationships with Pakistani intelligence officials, and Bahadur’s men, who are amenable to peace deals, fall in the category of reconcilable, and thus, ‘good’ militants.
As recently as February 2008, when the Pakistan government and North Wazirstan-based militants struck a second peace deal (the first was signed in 2006), our authorities apparently agreed to let Al Qaeda and Taliban fighters remain in the agency as long as they ‘remained peaceful’ and did not target Pakistani security forces. For this reason, many will carefully scrutinise Pakistan’s decision to launch a military operation in North Waziristan. It will be perceived as a clarification, once and for all, about whose war against terror we’re fighting (the conundrum did not arise in the south because Mehsud Taliban fighters were targeting the Pakistani establishment). But this is the time for Pakistanis to remember that there is no such thing as a ‘good’ militant. Indeed, it is too simplistic to think that only the US stands to gain from a Pakistani offensive in North Waziristan.
The threat of retaliatory attacks in Pakistan notwithstanding, the decision to let the sleeping dogs of North Waziristan lie would be tantamount to declaring that the Pakistani state endorses terrorism. The Haqqani network boasts thousands of fighters with sway over much of Fata. Given that the US is planning its exit strategy from Afghanistan, the Pakistani army and agencies are understandably reluctant to stir a hornet’s nest that has been pliably buzzing away in recent years. Many intelligence stalwarts are counting on the Haqqanis to serve as ‘strategic assets’ when the time is ripe.
But choosing not to dismantle this network now will only allow it to flourish in the future, making terrorist training camps a permanent feature of our north-western border. Since the North Waziristan Accord of 2006, Haqqani and Bahadur’s fighters have become deeply entrenched in the tribal agency. They run a parallel administrative system comprising courts, jails, recruiting offices for militants and taxation policies that are routinely enforced. Madressahs where youngsters are radicalised are reportedly mushrooming under the watchful eye of Taliban and Al Qaeda security forces.
This parallel system poses a direct threat to the Pakistani government and offers a glimpse into a future where militant networks have been tolerated by our state for too long. For that reason, when it comes to North Waziristan, the question should not be: whose war is it anyway? It should be: can we ever claim victory against terrorism if militant networks thrive within our borders and offer a viable alternative to governance? The answer to the second question is a resounding no. Therefore, Pakistan should move into North Waziristan — but on its own timeline, not that of the US.
Dr. Khurrum Shaukat Yusafzai.
Bearded Taliban does not only threaten Peshawar but there is a lot of Clean Shaven Taliban’s as well who are found in High positions of Power and Authority.
In Peshawar , there is no Cinema, which shows Urdu or English Film at all, practically shutting off the Families from any Clean Entertainment that can be enjoyed by a family and out of the house.
When “Khuda Kai Liyai “, a master Piece film which was produced after 3 decades came out I wanted to see it in Cinema and as it was not available on DVD , so cinema was the only choice available . I went around all the cinemas in Peshawar and not a single cinema was showing Urdu or English film what to talk of that Particular film I wanted to see.
Thus as a last resort I went to Pakistan Air force Cinema in cantonment area to see the Film as I remembered in my childhood time that it always showed good Urdu English films to officers and their families .
To my Dismay, they told me that Base commander of PAF has rented out this cinema to a contractor for a Profit, and he only shows Vulgar Pashto film to hordes of Rickshaw and Taxi drivers.
I was shocked and could not believe what they told me. These Kind of Clean Shaven Pro-Taliban Military Officers who are ideologically very near to Taliban are making Peshawar worse off then Kabul where there are Five TV channels and countless Cinemas showing good Films of taste.
More English Books are read there then whole of Asia in Kabul , May I ask these questions from them:, Are we Peshawarites worse off then Kabulites?
Second Case is that of Sahbizada Anees DCO Peshawar, who stopped construction of a school in the TMO Town-1 ” Azmatullah Wazir ’s” Area, has cancelled the Plan of the Private Girls college on the orders of DCO Peshawar.
Just because one of the neighbors had written the application to the DCO that due to the construction of Girls College , the Parda Of their house will be Smashed and preventing education to countless Females of that Area to joy of TTP.
As the plan was already approved by the concerned Authorities, i.e. BCA Community of Town 1 and NOC was issued too for the Project which was canceled by this clean shaven Taliban.
Recently I and other concerned Americans petitioned our representatives in the House of Congress to vote NO on HR 867, a resolution that called for President Obama and Secretary of State Clinton to oppose the United Nations consideration of the Goldstone Report.
My Congressperson Ginny Brown-Waite co-sponsored the resolution and on November 3, 2009, 344 House congressional reps voted to kill the Goldstone Report.
In response to my plea, Congressperson Ginny Brown-Waite wrote to me:
“The Council’s appointment of Richard Goldstone, a well-respected judge who is himself Jewish, to oversee the report gave some hope that the report would be fair. The Israeli Government, however, refused to cooperate with the mission. The Israeli Government concluded that any report emanating from the Human Rights Council, even with Goldstone’s leadership, would be hopelessly biased. This is a shame because the Israeli Government may have been able to better explain its version of events and thereby prevent Hamas’ side of the story from dominating the narrative of the report.
“The Goldstone Report does raise some serious questions about the Israeli invasion of Gaza. The report includes in Section XIV credible allegations that some Israeli soldiers used Palestinian civilians as human shields that were sent first into houses and properties where fighters were hiding. The report also found instances where civilians known not to pose a military threat were killed in cold blood. When pressed about these serious human rights violations the Israeli Government insisted that it is conducting an internal investigation and that if it concludes Israeli soldiers did not follow the rules of engagement they will be held accountable.
“While the Goldstone Report did raise serious questions about Israeli actions, it went too far when it concluded that Israeli policy in Gaza was designed ‘to deliberately and systematically inflict suffering on civilians.’ This is unfair and untrue… As Ehud Barak wrote in The Wall Street Journal, ‘After enduring eight years of ongoing rocket fire, and after all diplomatic efforts to stop this barrage failed it was my duty as defense minister to do something about it. It’s as simple and self-evident as the right to self-defense. While such logic eluded Mr. Goldstone and his team, it was crystal clear to the thousands of Israeli children living in southern Israel who had to study, play, eat and sleep while being preoccupied about the distance to the nearest bomb shelter.”
“Israel must never be denied its right to defend itself…Goldstone’s report is fundamentally biased and flawed and for this reason I have urged the President to oppose further consideration of the report and supported passage of H.Res. 867.”
On April 3, 2009 the President of the United Nations Human Rights Council commissioned a fact-finding mission “to investigate all violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law that might have been committed at any time in the context of the military operations that were conducted in Gaza during the period from 27 December 2008 and 18 January 2009, whether before, during or after.”
The Council appointed the Jewish Justice Richard Goldstone, a South African Constitutional Court judge and the former chief prosecutor of the United Nations International Criminal Tribunals for Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia.
Justice Goldstone issued the 575-page report on September 29, 2009 and the Goldstone Report accused both Israel and Hamas of war crimes perpetuated during the 23 days of assault on Gaza which began two days after last Christmas day, when the Israeli military launched Operation Cast Lead; a full-scale attack on Gaza that killed 13 Israelis and 1,400 Palestinians.
Over 5,000 Palestinians were injured, 400,000 were left without running water, 4,000 homes were destroyed, rendering tens of thousands who are still homeless because of Israel’s targeted attacks upon them, their schools, hospitals, streets, water wells, sewage system, farms, police stations and UN buildings.
The 23 days of Israel’s attack on the people of Gaza was enabled by US-supplied weapons paid for with US tax dollars and we the people of the US who pay taxes provide over $30 billion annually to Israel although Israel has consistently misused U.S. weapons in violation of America’s Arms Export Control and Foreign Assistance Acts.
America is the worlds largest arms supplier to Israel and under a Bush negotiated deal with Israel, we the people who pay taxes in America will also provide another $30 billion in military aid to Israel over the next decade.
During the 23 days of Israeli assault on Gaza, “Washington provided F-16 fighter planes, Apache helicopters, tactical missiles, and a wide array of munitions, including white phosphorus and DIME. The weapons required for the Israeli assault was decided upon in June 2008, and the transfer of 1,000 bunker-buster GPS-guided Small Diameter Guided Bomb Units 39 (GBU-39) were approved by Congress in September. The GBU 39 bombs were delivered to Israel in November (prior to any claims of Hamas cease fire violation!) for use in the initial air raids on Gaza. 
In a 71-page report released March 25, 2009, by Human Rights Watch, Israel’s repeated firing of US-made white phosphorus shells over densely populated areas of Gaza was indiscriminate and is evidence of war crimes.
“Rain of Fire: Israel’s Unlawful Use of White Phosphorus in Gaza,” provides eye witness accounts of the devastating effects that white phosphorus munitions had on civilians and civilian property in Gaza.
“Human Rights Watch researchers found spent shells, canister liners, and dozens of burnt felt wedges containing white phosphorus on city streets, apartment roofs, residential courtyards, and at a United Nations school in Gaza immediately after hostilities ended in January.
“Militaries officially use white phosphorus to obscure their operations on the ground by creating thick smoke. It has also been used as an incendiary weapon, though such use constitutes a war crime.
“In Gaza, the Israeli military didn’t just use white phosphorus in open areas as a screen for its troops,” said Fred Abrahams, senior emergencies researcher at Human Rights Watch and co-author of the report. “It fired white phosphorus repeatedly over densely populated areas, even when its troops weren’t in the area and safer smoke shells were available. As a result, civilians needlessly suffered and died.” [Ibid]
During the 23 days of attack on Gaza, the UN Security Council, Amnesty International, International Red Cross, and global voices of protest rose up and demanded a ceasefire, but both houses of Congress overwhelmingly endorsed resolutions to support a continuation of Israel’s so called “self defense.”
In November 2006, Father Manuel, the parish priest at the Latin Church and school in Gaza warned the world:
“Gaza cannot sleep! The people are suffering unbelievably. They are hungry, thirsty, have no electricity or clean water. They are suffering constant bombardments and sonic booms from low flying aircraft. They need food: bread and water. Children and babies are hungry…people have no money to buy food. The price of food has doubled and tripled due to the situation. We cannot drink water from the ground here as it is salty and not hygienic. People must buy water to drink. They have no income, no opportunities to get food and water from outside and no opportunities to secure money inside of Gaza. They have no hope.
“Without electricity children are afraid. No light at night. No oil or candles…Thirsty children are crying, afraid and desperate…Many children have been violently thrown from their beds at night from the sonic booms. Many arms and legs have been broken. These planes fly low over Gaza and then reach the speed of sound. This shakes the ground and creates shock waves like an earthquake that causes people to be thrown from their bed. I, myself weigh 120 kilos and was almost thrown from my bed due to the shock wave produced by a low flying jet that made a sonic boom.
“Gaza cannot sleep…the cries of hungry children, the sullen faces of broken men and women who are just sitting in their hungry emptiness with no light, no hope, no love. These actions are War Crimes!”
Rabbi Brian Walt, was born in Cape Town, South Africa and was active as a student in the struggle against Apartheid there. In June 2009, he and a few thoughtful Jews founded Ta’anit Tzedek: Jewish Fast for Gaza because “Isaiah said that the result of justice is peace and security and the psalmist wrote to move away from evil and pursue the good; seek peace and pursue it.”
On December 18, 2009 Rabbi Walt wrote, Hannukah and Operation Cast Lead: One year later from which I excerpt:
“Tomorrow is Shabbat Hannukah, the Sabbath that occurs during Hannukah. Exactly one year ago, on Shabbat Hannukah (Saturday December 27, 2008), Israel launched Operation Cast Lead.
“On that day, Saturday December 27, 2008, at 11:30 in the morning, a time when schoolchildren were still in school, 88 Israeli aircraft simultaneously attacked 100 preplanned targets in Gaza within a span of 4 minutes. This initial attack was followed by another attack and by the end of that Sabbath day, at least 230 Palestinians were killed and more than 700 injured.
“Shabbat Hannukah last year, was the day with the highest one day death toll in the history of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict…Our traditional greeting for Shabbat is Shabbat Shalom/ A Sabbath of Peace. That day was far from a Sabbath of Peace.
“Not only did the Israeli military assault start on Hannukah, the name of the campaign, Operation Cast Lead, is from a Hannukah poem by Haim Nachman Bialik about a dreidel made from cast lead that a father bought for his child. The poem became a popular Hannukah children’s song. I learned the song when I was a child and Jewish children in Israel and around the world sing it joyously. From now on the image of the cast lead dreidl will be associated with the lead of armaments and the violence of Operation Cast Lead.
“Israel with one of the strongest armies in the world bombarded one and a half million people who live in one of the most densely populated areas in the world, in an open air prison, in isolation enforced by the Israeli siege with no way to leave or enter.
Israel claimed it had no choice, any nation-state would do the same thing. Israel has a right and a responsibility to defend itself. The rockets that Palestinian armed groups fired into Israeli civilian areas terrorized the entire population, damaged property and sometimes injured and killed civilians.
“Was it true that Israel had no choice? Was this a wise or an ethical way to defend oneself?
“As a Jew, as a rabbi, as a human being I was shocked. Israel is a state that acts in the name of the Jewish people. This attack was neither wise, nor ethical. Is this what the ethical tradition of our people had come to? We say that to be Jewish is to be compassionate, “the compassionate who are also the children of the compassionate”? Isn’t the essence of our faith that every human being is created in the image of God?
“In June of this year, 10 rabbis came together to break the silence and created Taanit Tzedek – Jewish Fast for Gaza. Within a few weeks Taanit Tzedek – Jewish Fast for Gaza garnered the support of 300 people, including rabbis, ministers, imams, cantors and rabbinical students.
“Our call is simple…As Jews, people of many faiths and people of conscience, we can no longer stand idly by Israel’s collective punishment of the Palestinian people in Gaza.
“Since Hamas’ electoral victory in January 2006, Israel has subjected the Gaza Strip to an increasingly intolerable blockade that restricts Gaza’s ability to import food, fuel and other essential materials, and to export finished products. As a result, the Gazan economy has completely collapsed. Most of Gaza’s industrial plants have been forced to close, further contributing to already high levels of unemployment and poverty and rising levels of childhood malnutrition.
“On three things the world stands: on justice, on truth, and on peace.” (Mishnah Avot 1:18).
“Our call is three-fold: Break the Silence, Lift the Siege, Pursue Peace
Break the Silence: We must affirm the humanity of the residents of Gaza by breaking our silence about their suffering. They are human beings, just like us, created in the image of God and as deserving of human dignity, compassion and justice.
Lift the Siege: The Israeli siege on Gaza by land, air and sea that is causing untold human suffering is an unconscionable attack on civilians. This siege that is supported by U.S. government and the EU must be lifted.
Pursue the Peace: There is no military solution to the conflict. The only real solution is a negotiated settlement and it is time for Israel to negotiate with all relevant parties including Hamas towards a resolution of the conflict.
“Now, a year later, the suffering in Gaza is even greater than a year ago. Gazans have no way to rebuild their homes, to reclaim their agricultural land, to renew their lives as Israel blocks the entry of materials needed for reconstruction. Israel still doesn’t allow sufficient food into Gaza, the water supply is contaminated and there is the danger of a catastrophic health crisis.
“Tomorrow for Sahbbat Hannukah we will read a special Haftarah, a prophetic portion assigned by the rabbis for particular days. For Shabbat Hannukah the rabbis made a surprising choice, they assigned the passage from Zachariah that ends:
‘Not by Might, nor by Power, but My Spirit’
“Operation Cast Lead is based on the belief that overwhelming military force will provide security for the people of Israel. The rockets from Gaza are also a desperate effort to resist by military means. Israel is less secure than before the operation. There is no military solution to this or any other human conflict. The only solution is political a direct negotiated settlement. As the prophet Isaiah said justice is the only way to create peace and security.
“Hannukah is a rejection of power and military might and an affirmation of the Spirit of God that inheres in every human being. And it is this connection to the Spirit of Life that must be the center of our lives. 
Beginning the twelve days before this Christmas, this Christian of Conscience, began fasting daily in repentance for my Governments persistence in seeking SECURITY in imperialism and militarism.
The twelve days before Christmas, from the land of plenty, I have been in mourning over the 2.5 billion people on our planet who exist on less than $2.00 a day and the over 15,000 babies and young children who die daily because of malnutrition and substandard or nonexistent health care.
The twelve days before Christmas, as I reflected on the 42 years of Military Occupation and misery in the West Bank and Gaza perpetuated by so called democracies that blatantly deny equal human rights for all the citizens of the so called Holy Land, I have wondered what Jesus/AKA: The Prince of Peace would say to all the deaf, dumb and blind Americans who claim to be Christians 2009 years after The Prince of Peace walked the earth as a Palestinian Jew who was born, lived and died under a brutal military occupation but lived a life of NONVIOLENCE, forgiveness and love.
I imagine The Prince of Peace would remind US All of the Sermon on the Mount, which is understood by Christians of conscience to be our ‘marching orders’ and of which the 20th century agitator of church, state and media, Dorothy Day wrote:
“Love is not the starving of whole populations. Love is not the bombardment of open cities. Love is not killing…Our manifesto is the Sermon on the Mount, which means that we will try to be peacemakers.”
I spin the Christian Manifesto this way:
About 2,000 years ago, when The Prince of Peace was about 33, he hiked up a hill and sat down under an olive tree and began to teach the people:
“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of heaven.”
In other words: it is those who know their own spiritual poverty, their limitations, failures and transgressions and yet trust that God loves them in spite of it all; already live in the Kingdom of God.
How comforted we will all be, when we see, we haven’t got a clue, as to the depth and breadth of pure love and mercy of The Divine Mystery of The Universe.
God’s name in ancient Aramaic is Abba which means Daddy as much as Mommy and He/She: The Lord has said, “My ways are not your ways. My thoughts are not yours.” -Isaiah 55:8
“Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.”
The essence of meek is to be patient with ignorance, slow to anger and never hold a grudge. In other words: how comforted you will be when you also know humility; when you know yourself, the good and the bad, for both cut through every human heart.
“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, they will be filled.”
In other words: how comforted you will be when your greatest desire is to do what “God requires, and he has already told you what that is; BE JUST, BE MERCIFUL and walk humbly with your Lord.”-Micah 6:8
“Blessed are the merciful, they will be shown mercy.”
In other words: how comforted you will all be when you choose to return only kindness to your ‘enemy.’
“For with the measure you measure against another, it will be measured back to you” The Prince of Peace warned his disciples as he explained the law of karma in Luke 6:27-38.
“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they see God.”
In other words: how comforted you will be when you WAKE UP and see God is already within you, within every man, every woman and every child. The Supreme Being is everywhere, the Alpha and Omega, beginning and end; Beyond The Universe -and yet so small; within the heart of every atom.
“Blessed are The Peacemakers: THEY shall be called the daughters and sons of God.”
My CHRISTmas prayer for America is that we will Give Peace a Chance and that God would bless US everyone with a conscience and desire to tell the truth, to seek peace and pursue justice. My hope is that 2010 will be a year acceptable to the Lord and War Is Over.
Only in Solidarity do “we have it in our power to begin the world again.”-Tom Paine
Founder of WeAreWideAwake.org
A Feature Correspondent for Arabisto.com
Author of “Keep Hope Alive” and “Memoirs of a Nice Irish American ‘Girl’s’ Life in Occupied Territory”
Producer “30 Minutes with Vanunu” and “13 Minutes with Vanunu”
There is more evidence that David Headley, allegedly a CIA agent and planner of the Mumbai attacks, interrogated the Mumbai bombing suspects while they were in police custody in Mumbai.
One of the accused in the 26/11 Mumbai terror attack is Sabauddin Ahmed.
Ahmed has long alleged that Headley was one of the men who interrogated and threatened him. Headley interrogated me: 26/11 accused Sabauddin
“Headley was one of the foreign officials who had interrogated Sabauddin soon after his arrest in the 26/11 case. Headley had tried to forcefully record his confessional statement,” Ahmed’s complaint alleges.
Those charged in the Mumbai attacks of 2008 are Ajmal Kasab and two Indians Faheem Ansari and Sabauddin Ahmed.
Ansari and Ahmed are accused of preparing maps of the terror sites.
Ahmed’s defence lawyer, Mr Naqvi, alleges wrongful confinement and causing hurt to extract a confession.
According to the defence lawyer, “Sabauddin Ahmed earlier told me that one Colonel Headley had interrogated him.
“Now, we know who that Headley is.”
We already know that Kasab has alleged that he was interrogated by Headley. (“KASAB WAS INTERROGATED BY HEADLEY”)
Kasab is in a maximum security prison, presumably with no access to news of Headley.
We should not forget that MUMBAI SUSPECT DAVID HEADLEY INTRODUCED HIMSELF AS A CIA AGENT.
Contrary to initial reports that Ajmal Ameer Kasab was badly wounded in the Mumbai attacks and lost a lot of blood, doctors have said that’s not the case.
In Mumbai, 19-year-old Ishrat Jahan Raza was picked up by the police, along with her boyfriend.
Police said the four were ‘terrorists’ who had been gunned down after a police chase.
But a judicial probe found the four were killed in police custody.
The probe blamed top police for their deaths, saying they were staged to win promotions and rewards.
This is not the first time police in Gujarat have been blamed for extra-judicial killings. - Indian Probe Finds 4 People Were Killed in Staged Encounter by Police / Indians ‘killed in staged clash’