The Roots of American Fascism

The Case of Nazis in the CIA

The Gehlen Org: From OSS to CIA

During World War II, the OSS had infiltrated nearly two hundred agents into the Third Reich–almost three times as many as had been sent by Britain. Its operatives were inserted into almost every militarily significant city from Vienna to Berlin, Munich to Bremen. In all, over 70 cities had been salted with OSS spy teams by war’s end.

The casualties had been heavy, but not exorbitant. Of the total number of agents that worked behind German lines, only thirty-six had been killed or captured. And of these, the majority were lost in the waning days of the war in the vicinity of the Last Redoubt of Bavaria. It was at this time that almost every civilian found on the road by the Gestapo was detained and questioned as to why they were not in uniform for the Fatherland, or at least under arms in a home defense unit. Even the best cover stories provided to the young OSS agents might fail such a test. Many did.

Still, the organization as a whole was remarkable in its conception, implementation and execution. The bravery of the field teams was beyond question. They were a necessary entity, brought about by drastic circumstances. But after Germany surrendered, the need for specially trained spy-commandos was considered by the White House to be nil. In fact, Truman considered the OSS a peacetime liability.

In a letter to General Donovan, he wrote: “I want to take this occasion to thank you for the capable leadership you have brought to a vital wartime activity in your capacity as Director of Strategic Services. You may well find satisfaction in the achievements of the Office and take pride in your own contribution to them.” He then promptly took steps to abolish the service, dividing the few necessary peacetime functions between the State Department and the War Department.

But from the ashes rose a new organization. One much more powerful–and sinister. And it would be an organization that would grow much faster than anyone could ever dream. For a very good reason.

On April 1, 1945, a convoy of eleven trucks wound its way through Bavaria, traveling south from Berlin, away from the advancing Red Army who was at that moment conducting their ownblitzkrieg through eastern Germany. Aboard the trucks were hand-picked German intelligence officers who guarded a very special cargo. Inside crates that had been carefully stacked and hidden under the canvas tops of the trucks were the most valued prizes of the head of German military intelligence: the files on Russia.

The purpose of the convoy was not to transport the documents to the Last Redoubt, but to remove them from harm’s way altogether for use as future bargaining chips with the advancing Allies. For the files, which were the fruit of five years of intensive intelligence gathering on Russia, were now the personal property of a youthful 40 year-old general named Reinhard Gehlen. And with them, he planned on bargaining his way to a very special arrangement–with the Americans.

Reinhard Gehlen, known as Hitler’s spy master, had overseen a huge organization of more than 3500 spies scattered throughout both Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union. His top officers, Nazi zealots who had committed some of the most atrocious crimes of the war, had proven very effective in their efforts to extract information from prisoners and insert agents into Russia. The spies that were sent into the Soviet Union infiltrated not only the Red Army, but even the Soviet General Staff. The records Gehlen had amassed over the previous four years would be invaluable to the Allies–especially a select group of very interested Americans. Now it was only a question of saving the files and making the proper contacts on the American side. Gehlen was confident a suitable arrangement could be made for not only himself, but his organization.

Gehlen had been planning this move for months. He noted in his memoirs that, “Early in 1944 I told my more intimate colleagues that I considered the war lost and we must begin thinking of the future…and plan for the approaching catastrophe.”[i]

And prepare they did. Within the crates were documents that detailed roads, bridges, factories, military installations, airfields, water supplies, communications sites and virtually every item of interest inside Russia and the satellite countries to a military planner. But of more interest were the hundreds of files he had amassed on the personnel at the top of the Soviet military machine including the Soviet High Command. Much of this information was derived by interrogation, torture and starvation of selected officers and soldiers of some four million prisoners taken on the Eastern Front. Those who did not cooperate were summarily executed. Those that did were often executed afterwards when they were deemed of no further value. It was for these reasons that Gehlen and his officers were adamant about being captured by American forces. If they were taken by the Russians, they knew what would happen to them.

Two months before Germany surrendered, Gehlen made his move. Along with a group of his most trusted senior officers, he microfilmed the vast horde of documents and had them sealed in water-tight metal drums. These drums were covertly removed from army headquarters in Berlin and transported to secret cache sites throughout the Austrian Alps. It was well for Gehlen that this effort was made. For when the convoy of trucks transporting the hard copies of the files reached central Germany, the convoy was spotted by Soviet planes and bombed. Five of the eleven trucks were destroyed, and with them, the files they carried.

Gehlen and his officers, after abandoning Berlin to make their way toward Switzerland and the Americans, were–according to official history–indeed fortunate. When they finally found an American unit to surrender to, instead of running into a by-the-book American officer who might have offered them up to the Russians in accordance with the Yalta agreements, they encountered Captain John Bokor. Boker, who was described as a pragmatist who regarded the Soviets as the next potential enemy, impressed Gehlen as a person who, “…had no illusions about the way political events were turning. We became close friends.”

Bokor, according to Gehlen’s memoirs, ignored official policy. When he found out about the secret caches of records, he allegedly decided on his own to keep the matter confidential and quietly work to hand Gehlen, the records and the men of Gehlen’s spy network over intact to the OSS. Then, according to Gehlen, Bokor quietly went around removing the names of Gehlen’s men from the rosters of war criminals. Once this was accomplished, Gehlen turned part of his records over to Bokor who promptly spirited them away from the interrogation center without even Military Intelligence knowing of their existence. Within ninety days Boker had direct liaisonCand the personal support of–General Walter Bedell Smith, Chief of Staff of the Allied Supreme Command (who later headed the CIA), and General Edwin Sibert, the highest ranking military intelligence officer in Europe. Quite a feat for a mere captain.

At the same time, Gehlen’s existence in Allied hands quite coincidentally became known to General “Wild Bill” Donovan, head of the OSS, and his station chief in Europe, Allen Dulles. In August, Gehlen and three assistants were covertly flown to Washington and secreted away at Camp David for interviews with both Military Intelligence and the OSS. Apparently the OSS offered the best deal, for within a eighteen months the Gehlen Org, resurrected from the original Nazi spy network, had been installed in West Germany to act as the eyes and ears of the newly-created CIA.

The story that Captain Bokor, using great foresight and planning, managed all of these feats of clandestine operations on his own is too incredible to be true. It is not probable that a company-grade officer would risk his career to protect a Nazi war criminal, or put himself personally in jeopardy by wantonly violating international agreements. In any normal case, such activity would earn him a courts martial. It is even more improbable that Gehlen would stumble into the one American in a thousand that would quickly see the value in what Gehlen purported to offer and immediately begin work to protect not only Gehlen, but his officers.

What is more believable is that Gehlen had made these arrangements far in advance. By using certain trusted contacts within the German High Command who had both pre-war and current business dealings across national boundaries, Gehlen had coordinated a deal with a specified contact within the American intelligence community. Namely Allen Dulles.

Dulles knew Gehlen was coming. In April, one month before the war ended, and forty-five days before Gehlen surrendered to Bokor, Dulles ordered an aide to begin talks with the German general through intermediaries in Berlin.

While the Paperclip scientists were setting up shop in the U.S., Reinhard Gehlen began reestablishing his presence in West Germany. His organization, the Gehlen Org, quickly regained control of the majority of his former agents inside the Iron Curtain, and with the help of many of his former staff, put them back to work. Though he agreed not to hire any former Gestapo, SS or SD members, he sought them out and put them on the payroll–the CIA‘s payrollCregardless of his promise. And the CIA did not stop him.

Among his recruits were Dr. Franz Six and Emil Augsburg. Six and Augsburg had been members of an SS mobile Death’s Head killing squad that hunted down and killed Soviet Jews, intellectuals and partisans wherever they could be found. Six was known as a Streber, or Eager Beaver, for the enthusiastic manner in which he pursued his job. Gehlen also recruited the former Gestapo chiefs of Paris, France, and Kiel, Germany. Then, that not being enough, he hired Willi Krichbaum, the former senior Gestapo leader for southeastern Europe.

Gehlen was pleasantly surprised by what happened next. His new employer, the OSS, not only encouraged but financed an escape mechanism set up by Gehlen for former Nazis. The Gehlen Org established, with OSS help, “rat lines” to provide an underground escape network to be used by former war criminals to escape prosecution by German war crimes tribunals. By way of this organization, over 5,000 Nazis secretly made their way out of Europe to relocate around the globe.

Most went to South and Central America. The countries of choice were Argentina, Chile, Nicaragua and El Salvador. Within a few years after their arrival in these particular countries, the infamous right-wing government “death squads” made their first appearances. Of note in the expatriate community were such characters as Dr. Joseph Mengele, who specialized in crude genetic experiments on Jewish concentration camp inmates, and mass murderer Klaus Barbie, the infamous “Butcher of Lyons.”

According to some sources, former OSS officer James Jesus Angleton, who later became CIA Chief of Intelligence, was the man responsible for providing the Nazis with new identities before their departure from the detainment camps. Angleton worked directly for Dulles.[ii]

To satisfy his new employers, Gehlen realized that he had to produce information that was of value to Washington. He also realized that for an intelligence organization to be of value, and to justify a large budget, it had to have an entity that was considered a deadly threat to spy on. He knew that the Americans had little knowledge concerning both the Russians as a military machine, and what activities were transpiring behind the Iron Curtain. The Red Menace would fit the requirement of the ominous threat nicely. All Gehlen had to do was paint as bleak a picture of the situation as he could, and continue creating reports that indicated that the scenario was continually deteriorating. The more bad news he gave Washington, the more money he would have to work with. He knew that in peacetime, the only way to justify a large intelligence organization was to make sure there was always “an enemy at the gates.”

He began by feeding information to Dulles–and consequently to Truman–that appeared to show that the Russians were poised to attack the West. He reported that the Soviet forces in eastern Europe were comprised of 208 crack assault divisions, most of which were high-speed capable motorized rifle and tank divisions. Such figures showed that the Communists outnumbered the Western forces by a ratio of ten-to-one.

Then, in early 1947, he reported to the fledgling CIA that his agents had noted subtle changes in Soviet billeting and leave policies, and that troops were being recalled for some unspecified reason. He alluded that this could be the beginning of a preparation phase for the suspected invasion.

This was followed by Gehlen’s prediction that the Russians would move quickly once all troops and equipment had been activated and put into position for attack. It wouldn’t be long until there was a Soviet blitzkrieg.

In actual fact, Gehlen’s information could not have been further from the truth. By 1946, the Red Army was an over-extended, under-equipped, and exhausted force of combat-riddled units. Many of the battalions that had reached Berlin had done so on foot. There was not even sufficient motor transport to move one entire division without depriving another of its motorized assets. Almost half of the Red Army’s transport was horse drawn. In addition to this, U.S. Army Intelligence had established that the majority of Soviet forces in Eastern Europe was bogged down in rebuilding the eastern zones, reorganizing security structures, and performing governmental administrative functions. According to the intelligence estimate, the Soviet ground and air forces would not be combat effective against the Western powers for at least the next decade.

The 10:1 Russian superiority figure that Gehlen referred to was unrealistic from the beginning. Gehlen well knew, as did Dulles and the other veteran OSS agents, that the Soviet divisional structure was far less in numerical manpower than its U.S. equivalent. A Soviet division was typically one third as strong as an American division. And its leadership was far less effective. Instead of being able to function in combat with flexibility by making on-the-spot field expedient decisions, the Soviet officers had to wait for orders from upper echelon before reacting to a change in the flow of battle. This fact in itself often caused the Soviets grievous losses, and even defeats, during land battles. The U.S. forces, on the other hand, encouraged battlefield decisions during the heat of conflict to be made at the lowest levels.

Still, the OSS–and the follow-on CIG (Centrel Intelligence Group which replaced the OSS)Cchose to conveniently believe Gehlen. Over 70% of the reports submitted to Washington on CIA stationary were simply Gehlen’s words. According to a former CIA officer, “Gehlen’s reports and analyses were sometimes simply retyped onto CIA stationary and presented to President Truman without further comment.”[iii]

The results of such activities were exactly what the intelligence communityCand the militaryCwanted. Truman ceased cutting the military budget; increased spending for weapons research, military equipment, aircraft and the space program; ordered an increase in the development and construction of nuclear weapons; and most importantly to the young CIA, began pumping millions of dollars into the “black” budget for covert operations. In the ten years that followed the war, the CIA consumed over $200 million dollars of funds that did not have to be accounted for.

According to Victor Marchetti, former chief analyst on Soviet military capabilities and author of The CIA and the Cult of Intelligence, “The agency loved Gehlen because he fed us what we wanted to hear. We used his stuff constantly, and we fed it to everybody else: the Pentagon; the White House; the newspapers. They loved it.” Marchetti further explained, “Gehlen had to make his money by creating a threat that we were afraid of, so we would give him more money to tell us about it. In my opinion, the Gehlen organization provided nothing worthwhile for understanding or estimating Soviet military or political capabilities in Eastern Europe or anywhere else.”

The final result of all these cloak-and-dagger exercises was a reputed Cold War that lasted for almost half a century, and cost American taxpayers alone over $8 trillion dollars.

Peacetime intelligence gathering had become big business–profitable to not only the growing intelligence organizations, but to the defense industry and the investors who financed both it and the government.

Excerpted from The Medusa File


[i].  Covert Action, Fall 1990.

[ii].  Covert Action, Winter 1986.

[iii].  Blowback; America’s Recruitment of Nazis and Its Effect on the Cold War, by Christopher Simpson, (Weidenfeld & Nicolson), 1988.

“Russian troops can save Kyrgyz Statehood”–A. Dubnov:

06/12/2010

“Russian troops can save Kyrgyz Statehood”–A. Dubnov:

Maria Yanovskaya

Unrest in Southern Kyrgyzstan, provoked by supporters of deposed President Kurmanbek Bakiyev and were referred to the ethnic clashes that have already killed hundreds of people, led to the provisional government requested the military assistance from Russia.

About that, if Russia enters the troops, and whether it would mean the end of Kyrgyz statehood, in an interview Fergane.Ru “reflects an expert on Central Asia, international columnist for” Time of news “Arkady Dubnov.

– Kyrgyzstan officially appealed to Russia to enter into a zone of the Osh conflict “third force”. This request was preceded by a telephone conversation Rosa Otunbayeva with Vladimir Putin – apparently, the head of the interim government “was feeling” the situation, defining Russia’s reaction to his proposal. Were made all the formal steps necessary. Russia enters the troops?

– Yes, I am convinced of this. In Bishkek, rumors that await the landing of paratroopers from Ulyanovsk. Russian troops in the south of Kyrgyzstan – it is probably the only possible measure to stop the incredible bloodshed, in which, for different information, more than a thousand dead. And no matter where Russian troops have come – from Ulyanovsk, Russia or will go to Osh part of 201 th Division, which is stationed in Tajikistan, – above all, Russia could stop the bloodshed and banditry, the clashes, which are, after all, not at inter-ethnic. What is now happening in Osh and suburbs – is an attempt to revenge Bakiev, is not afraid of the word, degenerates who are taking revenge for the expulsion of the head of her family, because their project ended in failure – I mean the project of building the power vertical, based on “deliberative democracy”. With great sadness we have to admit that atrocities Bakiev and their sympathizers give them now the opportunity to beat their breasts: they say, Bakiyev immediately offered to enter peace-keeping troops, and he did not listen and now got the slaughter … and to provoke, to be exact – to organize this slaughter better time than the night before the SCO summit, it was impossible to choose.

Unfortunately, we can not say that and another project, promised by the Kyrgyz people, was a success – I’m talking about democratic reforms promised by the opposition, once in power in April this year. Unfortunately, the current government of Kyrgyzstan, with the best intentions, was powerless against banditry, drug traffickers, criminals, she was powerless against the huge (for a poverty-stricken Kyrgyzstan) money, which have overthrown the government and its supporters. With these funds it was possible to hire provocateurs, lumpen, bandits – and the new government could do nothing against the rampant this element.

– How can today say that it is – not ethnic conflict? It was only in savage hatred spills her that, too, Bakiyev people for money laid?

– Ethnic conflict is easy to ignite.

– He has already Light up. And these are two different issues – who put a match and someone from her flushed …

– Yes, the hatred spilled. And people do not realize that giving in to ethnic phobias, they were destroying her, and so is not very strong state. Unfortunately, we must remember the predictions according to which Kyrgyzstan is not yet an established state – and not because it has no tradition of statehood, but because the country which has inherited a huge amount of social, economic and ethnic problems, unable to be both a democracy, and Asian countries. Apparently, we must acknowledge that today in this part of Asia, democracy can not look like it looks in other countries – and even in the same Asia, for example, in India. Orderliness and sense of belonging to a single state has not yet dominate the mentality of the population in Kyrgyzstan – and this applies to people of all nationalities.

– How do you now “vmastili” all authoritarian regimes around. What can not be Asian and democratic country at the same time … Now, even those who condemned the regime in Uzbekistan, saying: Behold, they say, you see that maybe if the regime is weakening?

– In Uzbekistan, there are no such problems, which is in Kyrgyzstan in the areas densely populated by both the Uzbek and Kirghiz. Uzbekistan – is mostly mono-ethnic country …

– Yes, once there all gone. A Meskhetians simply deported …

– Meskhetians were few and they did not play a decisive role in the country. Uzbeks in Kyrgyzstan are not less than 800,000, is about a fifth of the population, it is very serious.And this is the legacy of the Bolshevik section of Central Asia, where the “cut” of the territory, regardless of the characteristics of compact ethnic areas of residence. It is now too late to talk about what has been done – is done, but Kyrgyzstan less fortunate than other Asian countries. It is in Kyrgyzstan was a potentially dangerous combination.

You can talk about other features of the relations between Kyrgyz and Uzbeks. It is believed that the Uzbeks – silent, clean, hard-working, sedentary, they are on a piece of land can grow a garden of Eden, and Kyrgyzstan – nomads, impatient, they want to get all – and once …

– Earth is not enough – he went and took …

– Indeed, these self-trapping lands characterized today for Kyrgyzstan – “Take and Delhi.But I do not think that we have here in the national characteristics, it is all misery and poverty. It features acquired from a long life in poverty, but they are. And today, just shout to the Kirghiz, Uzbeks that has done something with his distant relative – he will have nothing else, he will not understand it in the hands of stone – and forward.

The problem is that 15 years ago this was not. The hatred generated by the situation where all the money of the country were concentrated in the hands of one family. Bakiyev has tried to build a state with the help of this money. As a result, much of the country was cut off from financial flows, the small business has been virtually destroyed, all carved by one hand. And hatred come to its limit, and then – just match offer it. And the worst thing that even today these Bakiev money continues to “work”: everything that happens in Osh in these two days, provoked, directed and paid for by people Bakiyev. Only boundless fury bandit could produce such a splash. And while many Uzbeks today, as reports Fergana.Ru “, say the Kirghiz help them if they themselves say that they are operating band without ethnic affiliation that provoke some people against the other … And the people themselves say that it is impossible all measured only by ethnic hatred.

– Russian troops will mean the end of the interim government? Or is it all end Kyrgyz statehood?

– I think you can draw an analogy with the situation in Afghanistan. The Americans led by Hamid Karzai’s government and for many years trying to make him a capable government.And more and more Karzai is trying to free themselves from foreign tutelage, but so far it turns out badly. But the West’s message is this: you – the owners, and you will agree with his adversaries themselves – and yourself will fight them. This so-called “chechenization” when the situation is left up to local authorities.

In Kyrgyzstan the situation is similar, but with opposite sign. Here the national government has tried to cope with difficulties independently, but this attempt was unsuccessful. The authorities failed to negotiate with the enemy, they quickly began hunting for witches, but that’s not the point. Importantly, against the authorities played a powerful financial resource Bakiyev and complete lack of preservative by the Kyrgyz mentality – because when they begin to destroy everything around them and destroy their state, their country.

Russia can calm the situation – for how long, is hard to speak, I do not think it will take a week or a month … I think that the Kirghiz and Uzbeks asked Russian troops to stay longer. But Moscow must declare the that its presence is temporary and that she would do anything to the existing government took control of the situation into their own hands, and that Moscow would assist this interim government and making sure that government policy remained gosudarstvosohranyayuschey … Then, in principle, After some time, and with external support, the Government will be able to save the country. Otherwise Kyrgyzstan waiting split and the most tragic consequences … While the effects are already there …

But no one today would not allow Russia to remain in Kyrgyzstan, but it it not necessary.

– Or perhaps you want?

– Why? We do not even have common borders. And Kyrgyzstan – is not South Ossetia. It is, rather, Abkhazia, because Abkhazia has signs of statehood. What matters is that those who are today in Kyrgyzstan calls for aid to Russia, do not start tomorrow, shouting “Russian, get out of here!” I want them to understand that the Kirghiz themselves have not been able to cope with the situation, nor force Bakiev, who also failed to keep the situation in April nor new power …

– And why Uzbekistan is not going to interfere?

– For ethical reasons. Any intervention in Uzbekistan will be ethnic in nature.

– But his intervention can save lives. Tashkent Uzbek save …

– It’s not the Uzbeks. It Kyrgyz Uzbeks. And it so happened in recent years that the Uzbeks, Kyrgyz – are not like Uzbek. They will bring in Tashkent serious headache. They always something will require, they are very capable, they are independent, they are economically creative.

– So all this talk that Uzbekistan can exploit the situation and take control of the Kyrgyz Ferghana Valley, you seem to be untenable?

– I am absolutely sure that the Tashkent leadership clearly understands that such intervention would be much more dangerous than even what is happening now in Osh.Today, both issues are not decided. Introducing Uzbek troops too dangerous.

On the morning June 11 at the SCO summit, Islam Karimov, speaking about the situation in Kyrgyzstan, very briefly and succinctly remarked that remain in force for the Uzbek Foreign Ministry statement on April 9, stating that the situation in Kyrgyzstan – an internal matter of the Kirghiz. “And this says it all”, – said Karimov. Although already the morning of 11 June, it was known that in Osh night was carnage with numerous victims. Karimov has once again tried to show that Uzbekistan to these events is irrelevant and will not interfere.

– And why the interim government appealed to Russia and not to the CSTO?

– This once again confirms that the CSTO in the form of what now exists – the structure of ephemeral and some invented. And before it was clear that the leading role in the CSTO belongs to Russia – but the Kyrgyz events have shown that Russia, to show its relevance, the CSTO is not necessary. To Russia, and so turn to first. Kirghiz asked not to neighbors in the region: Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan and Tajikistan – and to Russia. And the Collective Security Treaty Organization – a suitcase without a handle, throw a pity, but to drag uncomfortable.

In addition, an urgent need to send troops, and seek assistance from the Collective Security Treaty Organization – a long time. Furthermore, the CSTO has no legitimate reason to intervene in internal affairs. UN, too, is unable to quickly provide the assistance necessary coordination with the UN Security Council, mandates – it takes weeks. We are talking about hours …

– Do you think the referendum will be held at all?

– First you need to understand why we need a referendum. To legitimize the current regime in Kyrgyzstan. But based on common sense, to ask another question – whether the authorities seek the support of the people at a time when the power is impotent? Maybe now worth the wait? Because the country is likely to be imposed by foreign forces – it is clear that Russia – and you’ll first need to determine their status, on what basis they will be introduced and for how long. And only after that, I think we can say that it is time to hold a referendum to legitimize the current government.

The same probably can be said about the Constitution. Kyrgyzstan needs to provide basic security for its citizens. Unfortunately, over time, sovereign Kyrgyzstan, reportedly seven times to amend the constitution, but unfortunately, their own texts of the Basic Law can not give people confidence in their future.

Source:: Fergana.Ru

CIA Links to the Muslim Brotherhood Alleged

CIA Links to the Muslim Brotherhood Alleged

By Gary Feuerberg
Epoch Times Staff
Pulitzer-prize winning journalist and Wall Street Journal reporter Ian Johnson.

Pulitzer-prize winning journalist and Wall Street Journal reporter Ian Johnson. (Gary Feuerberg/ Epoch Times)

For most of us living in the United States, our first contact with extremist Islamic ideology came after the 9/11 attack by Islamic militants. Others may recall the Afghan Islamic freedom fighters, the mujahideen, against the Soviet Union in the late 1970s, whom we helped supply with weapons. At the time, we didn’t care a whole lot about fundamentalist Islam beliefs. But that would change after we were attacked.

The arming by the West of the mujahideen was likely primed by the experiences that U.S. intelligence had with the Muslim Brotherhood, going back to the 1950s, according to Wall Street Journal reporter Ian Johnson.

In his new book, A Mosque in Munich: Nazis, the CIA, and the Muslim Brotherhood in the West, Pulitzer-Prize winning journalist, Ian Johnson tells a story of covert operations, Cold War rivalries, historical personalities and intrigue behind the origins of political Islam. Today, the most articulate and influential leaders of political Islam are members of the Islamic Brotherhood, which former Nazis and the CIA had a role in nurturing.

Johnson’s search for the origins of the Afghan fighters begins three decades earlier, when there was a psychological war for control of Muslims living in Germany. He interweaves his story around three distinct groups: the Germans, the Americans, and the Moslem Brotherhood and their focus of interest in a mosque in Munich, known as the Islamic Center of Munich.

This mosque is not famous because of its religious origins or piety but for its political significance. In fact, when he was snooping around the area and speaking to locals, Johnson found it hard to get anyone to tell him how it began.

The Germans

Johnson begins with the Nazis and their realization during World War II that many ethnic minorities living under control of the communist state hated their oppressors. There were around 30 million Muslims in the Soviet Union, and the communists before and during the war had been opposed to religion, closing mosques, and persecuting those who practiced their faith.

The Nazis easily recruited many of their prisoners of war, such as Tatars, Georgians, Chechens, Kazakhs, Uzbeks in areas bordering Russia—the Ukraine, the Caucasus, Baltic states, and Turkistan—to fight the Soviet Union. These soldiers were also employed in the Wehrmacht’s Ostministerium, which oversaw the newly conquered East European territories.

After the war, many thousands of these Muslims from Central Asia avoided being repatriated and stayed behind in what became West Germany. The Ostministerium, with mostly the same people, was rebuilt after the war to fight communism.

Johnson focused on one key personality, Gerhard Von Mende, who led the organizing of the émigrés and continued in this same capacity for the West German government after the defeat of the Nazis. As an academic who became active in the SS, his aim was to use Islam to motivate the émigrés to do the German’s bidding.

The émigrés were portrayed as quasi governments in exile, as nationalist movements, trying to free themselves from Soviet oppressors so they could practice their faith. Later, this anti-communist appearance made them appealing to Americans, who adopted them in their covert operations against the Soviet Union.

The Americans

The story moves on with the CIA covertly funding Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty, both front organizations based in Munich, with the latter beaming into the Soviet Union itself. The Americans took over Von Mende’s program “lock, stock and barrel,” said Johnson, at the New America Foundation, May 18. Radio Liberty relied heavily on the émigrés, composing between 75 and 80 percent of their employees, according to one estimate.

The former Nazi collaborators denied they had believed in the Nazi anti-Semitic propaganda, which Johnson found hard to accept for the higher level managers.

Through front organizations, the CIA sent émigrés to international conferences, such as the Bandung conference in Indonesia in 1955, where they could distribute propaganda, and criticize the treatment Muslims received in the Soviet Union, and which influenced third world countries. CIA agents also went on more than one Hajj, a pilgrimage to Mecca.

The Muslims working for Radio Liberty were easily discredited by the Soviets as Nazi stooges. They would be exposed also at international conferences as working for the CIA and for their Nazi past. These Muslims from the former Soviet Union and Nazi Germany had no or little religious education, and so also lacked credibility as religiously observant Muslims, said Johnson. The Americans looked for more credible Muslims and finally found their man: Dr. Said Ramadan, who is an Egyptian, anticommunist, and a leader of the Muslim Brotherhood.

Muslim Brotherhood

The third cast of characters is the Muslim radicals who eventually take control of the mosque and lead it in a different direction that becomes the foundation for extremist Islam, and an enormous influence for Muslims in Europe. Johnson uses the term “Islamism” or “political Islam” for a movement in the 20th century that endeavors to revive Islam with a brand of Islam that pursues an overtly political agenda.

Characteristics of Islamism are rejecting Western secular values, interpreting the Koran literally, and a rejection of the idea that historical context be taken into account when interpreting ancient texts. It also rejects the works of traditional Muslim scholars as “unnecessary” or even “detrimental,” says Johnson. It uses a Western style political organization, fascistic controls, and rejects the separation of the state and religion. It holds that anyone, including a Muslim, who doesn’t subscribe to its fundamentalist views can be killed as an apostate.

The most influential stream from this movement is the Muslim Brotherhood, founded by Hasan al-Banna in Egypt in 1928. A follower of Banna, Said Ramadan married one of Banna’s daughters and had all the qualities to become a new Muslim leader—eloquent spokesman, educated lawyer, and organizer. His thesis became a best-selling reference sold in mosques and cultural centers across Europe. Ramadan was invited to the White House during a conference in 1953 of Islamic scholars and he met President Eisenhower.

The U.S. liked him for a number of reasons: he appealed to youth at the mosque, spoke fluent English and, most of all, he vigorously opposed communist states, which banned religion or tightly controlled it. And he had no Nazi past to sully the relationship.

Due to the Brotherhood’s anti-Semitist doctrines and opposition to the founding of the state of Israel, the U.S. could never formally admit to being connected to Ramadan or the Brotherhood. Johnson has tried repeatedly through the Freedom of Information (FOI) to learn the nature of these ties, but his requests are always refused on national security grounds.

All the indications are that Dr. Ramadan and the Muslim Brotherhood were paid by the CIA to go to pan-European Muslim conferences where anti-communist stands were taken, says Johnson. But Johnson says Ramadan did things on his own terms and could never be used by anyone.

Since the Brotherhood is still a force in the world, it would be “embarrassing or compromising to show early dealings with the Brotherhood. It would be embarrassing to the Brotherhood also,” said Johnson.

As Ramadan withdrew or was eased out, eventually the mosque and the Islamic Center of Munich came under the control of different leaders of the Islamic Brotherhood, less radical theorists and more pragmatic, and tied to Saudi and Libya money and Arab dominance. The Islamic Center of Munich from ca. 1975 to 2000 would “grow into a national organization, send shoots across the Atlantic and lay the cornerstone for European organizations that endure today, ensuring that the Brotherhood’s version of Islam would come to be the most influential one in the West,” writes Johnson.

Meets with Vatican

Johnson argues that the Brotherhood dominates the West’s Muslim communities and converts Muslims to follow the Brotherhood’s narrow vision of Islam. Never a mass movement, it is a group of elite organizers who have set up structures to define Islam for the West. It lobbies for European Muslims and meets with the Vatican and the European Union.

Many have tried to connect the Brotherhood with the 9/11 attacks and terrorist attacks in Europe—London and Madrid. The terrorists had contact with the people at the mosque or with the Brotherhood ideology. But no direct links were ever proved and the Brotherhood’s position is that it opposes the use of violence. But there is no question that the terrorists began their careers through contact with Brotherhood ideology, says Johnson.

Johnson argues that 9/11 greatly benefited the standing of the Muslim Brotherhood because it made them appear as “moderates.”

However, Johnson said that we should not be lulled into believing that the Brotherhood is a picture of reason and tolerance. Speaking at a meeting of the group that shapes Islamic conduct—the European Council for Fatwa and Research, Mohammad Hawari said that the West’s sexual revolution was the plan from the Jews. Hawari quoted from The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, one of the most virulent anti-Semitic books in existence.

Youssef Qaradawi is the most influential religious figure in the entire Muslim world, says Johnson. Qaradawi approves suicide bombings against Israeli civilians, including children.

Johnson said, “The problem for me is that the Muslim Brotherhood creates a milieu that leads to terrorism, ‘us’ vs. ‘them’ mentality, a bifurcated world view.” Johnson isn’t saying that anyone who comes into contact with the Brotherhood becomes a terrorist, but that  it helps facilitate it.

Defend America’s real interests

Defend America’s real interests

BY JIM SCOFIELD

Neither the Iraq nor the Afghanistan conflict is about terrorism, despite claims and inferences from both the Bush and Obama administrations, or our press.

The Taliban were never international terrorists, threatening the United States or other countries. Just like the lies told to justify the Iraq invasion – that Iraq was involved in 9/11, that it had weapons of mass destruction, that it was a threat to America – the case against the Taliban was fabricated.

Our leaders have purposely confabulated the Taliban and al-Qaida, the latter being a terrorist group that numbers probably only in the hundreds in this whole area.

The Taliban may be a cruel and fanatic despotism, but that isn’t a rationale for this war.

Our wars extend farther, though. We are attacking in Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia, and threatening an attack against Iran.

In these countries, we use assassination, chiefly with drone-fired missiles, controlled remotely from the United States. These weapons are used to kill those insurgent chiefs our political and military secretly determine, often along with their family, friends, and other “collateral damage.”

This policy ignores that Congress in the 1970s outlawed assassination of foreign leaders. Because the United States is not at war with these countries, these killings are illegal under U.S. and international law.

That our nation now has the power to secretly watch by drone aircraft anybody and anyplace in the world, and to kill secretly selected persons, should appall us all.

National Intelligence Director Dennis Blair blithely told Congress that the United States even reserves the right to kill American citizens overseas whom it deems are allied with terrorists.

Of course, there need be no public hearings, just the infallible judgments of the same types that lied to us about Iraq and the Taliban.

Just as dangerous and out of public control is the use of our special forces on covert missions into Pakistan and other countries we aren’t at war with.

Our military establishment is incredibly extensive. U.S. military spending exceeds that of all other nations’ armies combined – more than $700 billion officially, but hundreds of billions more if we include veterans’ benefits, the war part of the national debt, and other outlays.

We have more than 800 bases in foreign lands, spread out like the empires of old, bigger bases in Colombia in South America and in the Philippines; smaller ones elsewhere.

Despite the timetables for withdrawing combat troops from Iraq and Afghanistan, we intend to keep our bases and thousands of troops there, along with our corporate Blackwater-type mercenaries, for many years, as divulged by American generals.

If there is any connection with terrorism here, it may be the hatred we create among people we kill by the thousands and hundreds of thousands, whose doors we crash in at night, whose streets we patrol, whose governments we control.

This approach is not the defense of America. Our real defense lies in rebuilding our ancient and crumbling infrastructures, our bridges, our antiquated water and sewage systems, decaying and faltering schools, high-speed Internet access, alternative energies efforts, and inadequate medical coverage.

We would do well to bring home those soldiers we have put in danger to perform these “defense” jobs, instead of wasting them – many couldn’t get a good job here – destroying the structures of other countries.

These repairs will cost us hundreds of billions, but our economy depends upon them.

We can’t afford such an expensive military empire abroad with the urgent needs here at home, too.

This should be more and more obvious after the huge loses we have suffered from the bad recession.

Leaders can always command uncritical support for military spending and wars, something they often fail to get with their domestic proposals. Perhaps this is why we are almost always at war – close to nine years with the present one, and no immediate end in sight.

The notion that we have any right to invade and dominate the Middle East is bogus.

Terrorism is a cover for this war, for oil, for empire.

During the cold war with the Soviet Union we faced almost instant nuclear annihilation.

Terrorists are, by contrast, a comparatively weak force.

Jim Scofield of Richland Township is an associate professor emeritus of Pitt-Johnstown.

Killing Shias is not jihad–stop this carnage in Pakistan

Killing Shias is not jihad – stop this carnage in Pakistan

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This is an old article – When the state kills – authored by Pakistan’s eminent intellectual Khaled Ahmed. It remains relevant for what is happening today – the carnage in Karachi and targetted killing of the Shia minority is a cause for concern for  Pakistanis who want the country to become a plural, tolerant and progressive society for all its citizens irrespective of their faith, caste or creed.
Many of us – who identify themselves as neither Sunni nor Shia (only Muslims) – strongly condemn the Karachi incidents and will continue to raise voice against extremism and sectarianism.
Leader of the anti-Shia religious party Sipah Sahaba, Maulana Azam Tariq, has been released after being honourably acquitted of all charges of terrorism. He was picked up after he went and met Maulana Akram Awan in Chakwal earlier in the year after the latter had threatened to overthrow General Musharraf and impose Shariat on Islamabad. Maulana Tariq had thereafter announced that his party will also forcibly impose principles of Sharia in selected cities of the country. While he was in jail facing trial, his party had warned the government of dire consequences. In the interim, there was a spate of shia killings in Karachi, mainly targeting doctors and other prominent personalities. Workers of Sipah Sahaba had started offering arrests to pressure the government into releasing their leader.
Lashkar and Sipah linkage:After being acquitted of charges of terrorism, Maulana Azam Tariq has once again publicly dissociated himself from the terrorist activities of Lashkar-e-Jhangvi and called on it to give up violence. Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, run by terrorist Riaz Basra, is dedicated to Maulana Haq Nawaz Jhangvi, the founder of Sipah Sahaba. (Jhangvi’s anti-shia tapes are famous.) When the Lashkar activist who killed the Iranian diplomat Sadiq Ganji in Lahore in 1990 was about to be hanged Maulana Azam Tariq, instead of dissociating himself from the terrorist, actually led a campaign for the remission of his sentence and even offered diyat (blood money) to Iran. Another splinter of Sipah, Jaish-e-Muhammed, also reveres late Maulana Haq Nawaz jhangvi. In fact its leader Masood Azhar first wanted to name his militia Lashkar-e-Muhammad but was advised by his ‘handlers’ to avoid the association with Lashkar-e-Jhangvi. The sectarian Jaish was given territory near Balakot for guerrilla training for incursions into Kashmir, which makes the state party to the sectarian mess in Pakistan. It is expected that after the release of Maulana Azam Tariq the killings of doctors and prominent citizens of Karachi will taper off. This is not the first time the state has made a deal with him.
That the state is involved in Shia killings in Karachi has been reported in the press in Pakistan. That there is a strong Deobandi-Sipah presence in Karachi with links with MQM Haqiqi, courtesy intelligence agencies, has also been noted. This makes Maulana Azam Tariq the most powerful man from Karachi to Gilgit. Indeed there are cities where his writ runs stronger than that of the state. A French scholar who is writing his biography and lived in his house in Jhang for a time observed that Maulana Azam Tariq’s day normally began by giving orders to the city’s administration. His orders have been equally effective when he was in jail. He is in fact the most powerful man of the Deobandi jehad organised by the state and is definitely more powerful than the chief executive of Pakistan on a given day on the basis of his ability to make things happen.
State officers who kill Shias:The press is careful in reporting the sectarian truth in Karachi but some signs of a desperate kind of courage have come to light after the heart-rending murders of the Shia doctors in the city. Amjad Bashir Siddiqi wrote in The News (5 August 2001): ‘These sectarian organisations, with enormous money in their pockets, spend it without any limits to free terrorists or to bail them out, and more importantly, to ingress into the administration. Recently, money was spent to free a terrorist from the custody of CIA, who, three days later assassinated the chief of Sunni Tehreek, Saleem Qadiri. Lately, they are also trying to wriggle free another activist of their party now on death row and are ready to spend as much money as needed to ensure that Mansur, convicted for the killing of seven members of three families in PECHS back in 1993, gets bail’.
The article goes on to describe how the Jaish-e-Muhammad leader Maulana Masood Azhar, whose entry was banned in Sindh because of the wave of sectarian terrorism, was stopped at Karachi airport and was asked to go back. Azhar phoned someone and the ban was immediately lifted to allow him to enter Karachi, after which he had a meeting with home secretary, Sindh. Azhar also later went to Ghotki in violation of the ban and was ignored by the local SDM there who was probably himself anti-Shia. The officer was pulled up, but later still, when Maulana Azhar tried to enter Sukkur and was stopped by the district administration it was pulled up this time for not giving him unhampered passage to anywhere in the city. The article adds: ‘Another serious problem has been the criminalisation of the jehadi elements, some of whom have been involved in sectarian killings. Recently, commissioner Karachi Shafiqur Rehman Khwaja gave Rs 200,000 to the prime suspect of Saleem Qadri’s murder, Arshad Polka, as compensation money for being a victim of terrorism. Polka had died during the attack on the Sunni Tehreek leader.’ The article goes on to link the state machinery with sectarian killers. Officers aligned to sectarian killers do two things: they get the criminals released in case they are caught after the act, and they see to it that caught terrorists are not allowed to be linked to the jehadi militias. The state is in fact the killer of the Shia in Pakistan.
ISI and Shia killings:Monthly Newsline (June 2001) actually wrote that the intelligence agencies were ‘in’ with the sectarian terrorists: ‘The official quoted above has no hesitation in accusing the ISI of orchestrating such (Shia) murders through the militants of sectarian parties, adding that Sipah Sahaba terrorists are trained by the agency. The Sipah Sahaba are supported by the MQM Haqiqi Group. Sources reveal that Sipah Sahaba’s (sic!) Riaz Basra has been spotted in the company of a colonel who has also given him shelter in his house. Similarly, when three members of Lashkar-e-Jhangvi were picked up by the police, another colonel, who identified himself as their PRO, requested that they be released forthwith’. It should be noted that Riaz Basra has been described by the magazine as a Sipah activist! Karachi has killed 450 people in cases of sectarian violence since General Musharraf took over the government in October 1999. Lately the killing is one-sided because the Sunni-Deobandi combine is simply too strong to be countered by the Shia organisations.
The shia-sunni conflict is as old as Islam itself in the Indian subcontinent, but it was effectively marginalised by a secular British raj which treated it as a law-and-order issue. After 1947, the policy was continued and the worst sectarian riots were defined by the state as no more than public disorder which the executive handled as violation of the CRPC, the legal code of criminal procedure. The clergy involved in the conflict gradually became tired as the citizens mixed and intermarried across the sect boundaries. The breakdown of the secular state under General Zia’s martial law brought the shia-sunni differences to centre-stage.
General Zia versus the Shias:General Zia took over the populist slogan of Nizam-e-Mustafa and imposed ’shariah’ on Pakistan. It really meant the imposition of the Sunni Hanafi ‘fiqh’ or jurisprudence followed by the majority population from which the shias were excluded. The two early laws under ’shariah’ that he enforced failed miserably: the first, abolition of ‘riba’, failed because of the inability of the Islamic scholars to reinterpret Islam for modern conditions; the second, ‘zakat’, failed because the shia jurisprudence, called ‘Fiqha-e-Jaafaria’, had a conflicting interpretation of zakat. In 1980, an unprecedented procession of shias, led by Mufti Jaafar Hussain, laid siege to Islamabad and forced General Zia to exempt the shia community from the deduction of zakat. The concept of sunni ‘ushr’ (poor-due on land) is also rejected by shia jurisprudence.
It appears that, when the anti-shia movement started in Jhang in the 1980s, General Zia not only ignored it but saw it as his balancing act against the rebellious shia community. This was worsened by Imam Khomeini’s criticism of General Zia. The rise of Maulana Haq Nawaz Jhangvi in the stronghold of big shia landlords in Punjab changed the sectarian scene in Pakistan. There is evidence that General Zia was warned of Jhangvi’s anti-shia and anti-Iran movement, but he ignored the warning and allowed it to blossom into a full-fledged religious party called Anjuman-e-Sipah-e-Sahaba of Pakistan (ASSP). In small towns, the old shia-sunni debate restarted with the fury that had become dampened in the past. The tracts which carried this debate were scurrilous in the extreme and helped the clerics to whip up passions. Meanwhile, in 1986, General Zia allowed a ‘purge’ of Turi shias in the divided city of Parachinar (capital of Kurram Agency on the border with Afghanistan) at the hands of the sunni Afghan mujahideen in conjunction with the local sunni population.
Pakistan versus the Turis of Parachinar:Parachinar was the launching-pad of the Mujahideen attacks into Afghanistan and the Turis were not cooperative. Tehrike-e-Nifaz-e-Fiqha-e-Jaafaria had come into being during the dispute over zakat in 1980. When the Parachinar massacre occurred, it was led by a Turi leader, Allama Arif-ul-Hussaini. Allama Hussaini was murdered in Peshawar in August 1988, for which the Turis held General Zia responsible. That was also the year of General Zia’s death (within a fortnight of Hussaini’s murder) in an air-crash in Bahawalpur, and for a time there was rumour of shia involvement in his assassination although no solid evidence supporting this speculation was ever uncovered. The NWFP governor General Fazle Haq, whom the Turis accused of complicity in the murder of Allama Hussaini, was ambushed and killed in 1991. (Mehram Ali, the shia terrorist who blew up the Sipah leader Maulana Zia-ur-Rehman Farooqi at the sessions court in Lahore, was trained in Parachinar).
In 1989, the Afghan mujahideen government-in-exile came into being in Peshawar after the Soviet retreat from Afghanistan. At the behest of Saudi Arabia, the exiled shia mujahideen of Iran were not included in this government. The Saudis, according to author Barnett R.Rubin in The Search for Peace in Afghanistan (page 103) paid over 23 million dollars a week during the 519-member session of the Mujahideen ’shura’ as bribe for it. In 1990, Maulana Jhangvi was murdered at the climax of his anti-Iran and anti-shia campaign of extreme insult and denigration. The same year, as if in retaliation, an activist of Sipah-e-Sahaba shot the Iranian consul Sadiq Ganji dead in Lahore. The tit-for-tat killings were thus started. Maulana Isar-ul-Qasimi, chief of the Sipah, was gunned down in 1991.
Since then, the state of Pakistan has had to answer for the killing of more Iranians in Pakistan. Another consular officer was gunned down in Multan and a number of Iranian air force trainees were ambushed in Rawalpindi on inside information received by the killers, thus making the army not uninvolved in the sectarian mayhem. Most commentators in Pakistan are scared of telling the truth. Most inter-sectarian dialogue is fake since its great facade of speech-making is nothing but divine-sounding hogwash. Almost all Muslim clerics lie when it comes to sectarian deaths

This is an old article – When the state kills – authored by Pakistan’s eminent intellectual Khaled Ahmed. It remains relevant for what is happening today – the carnage in Karachi and targetted killing of the Shia minority is a cause for concern for  Pakistanis who want the country to become a plural, tolerant and progressive society for all its citizens irrespective of their faith, caste or creed.
PTH strongly condemns the Karachi incidents and will continue to raise voice against extremism and sectarianism.
Leader of the anti-Shia religious party Sipah Sahaba, Maulana Azam Tariq, has been released after being honourably acquitted of all charges of terrorism. He was picked up after he went and met Maulana Akram Awan in Chakwal earlier in the year after the latter had threatened to overthrow General Musharraf and impose Shariat on Islamabad. Maulana Tariq had thereafter announced that his party will also forcibly impose principles of Sharia in selected cities of the country. While he was in jail facing trial, his party had warned the government of dire consequences. In the interim, there was a spate of shia killings in Karachi, mainly targeting doctors and other prominent personalities. Workers of Sipah Sahaba had started offering arrests to pressure the government into releasing their leader.    Lashkar and Sipah linkage:After being acquitted of charges of terrorism, Maulana Azam Tariq has once again publicly dissociated himself from the terrorist activities of Lashkar-e-Jhangvi and called on it to give up violence. Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, run by terrorist Riaz Basra, is dedicated to Maulana Haq Nawaz Jhangvi, the founder of Sipah Sahaba. (Jhangvi’s anti-shia tapes are famous.) When the Lashkar activist who killed the Iranian diplomat Sadiq Ganji in Lahore in 1990 was about to be hanged Maulana Azam Tariq, instead of dissociating himself from the terrorist, actually led a campaign for the remission of his sentence and even offered diyat (blood money) to Iran. Another splinter of Sipah, Jaish-e-Muhammed, also reveres late Maulana Haq Nawaz jhangvi. In fact its leader Masood Azhar first wanted to name his militia Lashkar-e-Muhammad but was advised by his ‘handlers’ to avoid the association with Lashkar-e-Jhangvi. The sectarian Jaish was given territory near Balakot for guerrilla training for incursions into Kashmir, which makes the state party to the sectarian mess in Pakistan. It is expected that after the release of Maulana Azam Tariq the killings of doctors and prominent citizens of Karachi will taper off. This is not the first time the state has made a deal with him.
That the state is involved in Shia killings in Karachi has been reported in the press in Pakistan. That there is a strong Deobandi-Sipah presence in Karachi with links with MQM Haqiqi, courtesy intelligence agencies, has also been noted. This makes Maulana Azam Tariq the most powerful man from Karachi to Gilgit. Indeed there are cities where his writ runs stronger than that of the state. A French scholar who is writing his biography and lived in his house in Jhang for a time observed that Maulana Azam Tariq’s day normally began by giving orders to the city’s administration. His orders have been equally effective when he was in jail. He is in fact the most powerful man of the Deobandi jehad organised by the state and is definitely more powerful than the chief executive of Pakistan on a given day on the basis of his ability to make things happen.
State officers who kill Shias:The press is careful in reporting the sectarian truth in Karachi but some signs of a desperate kind of courage have come to light after the heart-rending murders of the Shia doctors in the city. Amjad Bashir Siddiqi wrote in The News (5 August 2001): ‘These sectarian organisations, with enormous money in their pockets, spend it without any limits to free terrorists or to bail them out, and more importantly, to ingress into the administration. Recently, money was spent to free a terrorist from the custody of CIA, who, three days later assassinated the chief of Sunni Tehreek, Saleem Qadiri. Lately, they are also trying to wriggle free another activist of their party now on death row and are ready to spend as much money as needed to ensure that Mansur, convicted for the killing of seven members of three families in PECHS back in 1993, gets bail’.
The article goes on to describe how the Jaish-e-Muhammad leader Maulana Masood Azhar, whose entry was banned in Sindh because of the wave of sectarian terrorism, was stopped at Karachi airport and was asked to go back. Azhar phoned someone and the ban was immediately lifted to allow him to enter Karachi, after which he had a meeting with home secretary, Sindh. Azhar also later went to Ghotki in violation of the ban and was ignored by the local SDM there who was probably himself anti-Shia. The officer was pulled up, but later still, when Maulana Azhar tried to enter Sukkur and was stopped by the district administration it was pulled up this time for not giving him unhampered passage to anywhere in the city. The article adds: ‘Another serious problem has been the criminalisation of the jehadi elements, some of whom have been involved in sectarian killings. Recently, commissioner Karachi Shafiqur Rehman Khwaja gave Rs 200,000 to the prime suspect of Saleem Qadri’s murder, Arshad Polka, as compensation money for being a victim of terrorism. Polka had died during the attack on the Sunni Tehreek leader.’ The article goes on to link the state machinery with sectarian killers. Officers aligned to sectarian killers do two things: they get the criminals released in case they are caught after the act, and they see to it that caught terrorists are not allowed to be linked to the jehadi militias. The state is in fact the killer of the Shia in Pakistan.
ISI and Shia killings:Monthly Newsline (June 2001) actually wrote that the intelligence agencies were ‘in’ with the sectarian terrorists: ‘The official quoted above has no hesitation in accusing the ISI of orchestrating such (Shia) murders through the militants of sectarian parties, adding that Sipah Sahaba terrorists are trained by the agency. The Sipah Sahaba are supported by the MQM Haqiqi Group. Sources reveal that Sipah Sahaba’s (sic!) Riaz Basra has been spotted in the company of a colonel who has also given him shelter in his house. Similarly, when three members of Lashkar-e-Jhangvi were picked up by the police, another colonel, who identified himself as their PRO, requested that they be released forthwith’. It should be noted that Riaz Basra has been described by the magazine as a Sipah activist! Karachi has killed 450 people in cases of sectarian violence since General Musharraf took over the government in October 1999. Lately the killing is one-sided because the Sunni-Deobandi combine is simply too strong to be countered by the Shia organisations.
The shia-sunni conflict is as old as Islam itself in the Indian subcontinent, but it was effectively marginalised by a secular British raj which treated it as a law-and-order issue. After 1947, the policy was continued and the worst sectarian riots were defined by the state as no more than public disorder which the executive handled as violation of the CRPC, the legal code of criminal procedure. The clergy involved in the conflict gradually became tired as the citizens mixed and intermarried across the sect boundaries. The breakdown of the secular state under General Zia’s martial law brought the shia-sunni differences to centre-stage.
General Zia versus the Shias:General Zia took over the populist slogan of Nizam-e-Mustafa and imposed ’shariah’ on Pakistan. It really meant the imposition of the Sunni Hanafi ‘fiqh’ or jurisprudence followed by the majority population from which the shias were excluded. The two early laws under ’shariah’ that he enforced failed miserably: the first, abolition of ‘riba’, failed because of the inability of the Islamic scholars to reinterpret Islam for modern conditions; the second, ‘zakat’, failed because the shia jurisprudence, called ‘Fiqha-e-Jaafaria’, had a conflicting interpretation of zakat. In 1980, an unprecedented procession of shias, led by Mufti Jaafar Hussain, laid siege to Islamabad and forced General Zia to exempt the shia community from the deduction of zakat. The concept of sunni ‘ushr’ (poor-due on land) is also rejected by shia jurisprudence.
It appears that, when the anti-shia movement started in Jhang in the 1980s, General Zia not only ignored it but saw it as his balancing act against the rebellious shia community. This was worsened by Imam Khomeini’s criticism of General Zia. The rise of Maulana Haq Nawaz Jhangvi in the stronghold of big shia landlords in Punjab changed the sectarian scene in Pakistan. There is evidence that General Zia was warned of Jhangvi’s anti-shia and anti-Iran movement, but he ignored the warning and allowed it to blossom into a full-fledged religious party called Anjuman-e-Sipah-e-Sahaba of Pakistan (ASSP). In small towns, the old shia-sunni debate restarted with the fury that had become dampened in the past. The tracts which carried this debate were scurrilous in the extreme and helped the clerics to whip up passions. Meanwhile, in 1986, General Zia allowed a ‘purge’ of Turi shias in the divided city of Parachinar (capital of Kurram Agency on the border with Afghanistan) at the hands of the sunni Afghan mujahideen in conjunction with the local sunni population.
Pakistan versus the Turis of Parachinar:Parachinar was the launching-pad of the Mujahideen attacks into Afghanistan and the Turis were not cooperative. Tehrike-e-Nifaz-e-Fiqha-e-Jaafaria had come into being during the dispute over zakat in 1980. When the Parachinar massacre occurred, it was led by a Turi leader, Allama Arif-ul-Hussaini. Allama Hussaini was murdered in Peshawar in August 1988, for which the Turis held General Zia responsible. That was also the year of General Zia’s death (within a fortnight of Hussaini’s murder) in an air-crash in Bahawalpur, and for a time there was rumour of shia involvement in his assassination although no solid evidence supporting this speculation was ever uncovered. The NWFP governor General Fazle Haq, whom the Turis accused of complicity in the murder of Allama Hussaini, was ambushed and killed in 1991. (Mehram Ali, the shia terrorist who blew up the Sipah leader Maulana Zia-ur-Rehman Farooqi at the sessions court in Lahore, was trained in Parachinar).
In 1989, the Afghan mujahideen government-in-exile came into being in Peshawar after the Soviet retreat from Afghanistan. At the behest of Saudi Arabia, the exiled shia mujahideen of Iran were not included in this government. The Saudis, according to author Barnett R.Rubin in The Search for Peace in Afghanistan (page 103) paid over 23 million dollars a week during the 519-member session of the Mujahideen ’shura’ as bribe for it. In 1990, Maulana Jhangvi was murdered at the climax of his anti-Iran and anti-shia campaign of extreme insult and denigration. The same year, as if in retaliation, an activist of Sipah-e-Sahaba shot the Iranian consul Sadiq Ganji dead in Lahore. The tit-for-tat killings were thus started. Maulana Isar-ul-Qasimi, chief of the Sipah, was gunned down in 1991.
Since then, the state of Pakistan has had to answer for the killing of more Iranians in Pakistan. Another consular officer was gunned down in Multan and a number of Iranian air force trainees were ambushed in Rawalpindi on inside information received by the killers, thus making the army not uninvolved in the sectarian mayhem. Most commentators in Pakistan are scared of telling the truth. Most inter-sectarian dialogue is fake since its great facade of speech-making is nothing but divine-sounding hogwash. Almost all Muslim clerics lie when it comes to sectarian deaths.

Published in The Friday Times, 2007

This is an old article – When the state kills – authored by Pakistan’s eminent intellectual Khaled Ahmed. It remains relevant for what is happening today – the carnage in Karachi and targetted killing of the Shia minority is a cause for concern for  Pakistanis who want the country to become a plural, tolerant and progressive society for all its citizens irrespective of their faith, caste or creed.Many of us – who identify themselves as neither Sunni nor Shia (only Muslims) – strongly condemn the Karachi incidents and will continue to raise voice against extremism and sectarianism.Leader of the anti-Shia religious party Sipah Sahaba, Maulana Azam Tariq, has been released after being honourably acquitted of all charges of terrorism. He was picked up after he went and met Maulana Akram Awan in Chakwal earlier in the year after the latter had threatened to overthrow General Musharraf and impose Shariat on Islamabad. Maulana Tariq had thereafter announced that his party will also forcibly impose principles of Sharia in selected cities of the country. While he was in jail facing trial, his party had warned the government of dire consequences. In the interim, there was a spate of shia killings in Karachi, mainly targeting doctors and other prominent personalities. Workers of Sipah Sahaba had started offering arrests to pressure the government into releasing their leader.Lashkar and Sipah linkage:After being acquitted of charges of terrorism, Maulana Azam Tariq has once again publicly dissociated himself from the terrorist activities of Lashkar-e-Jhangvi and called on it to give up violence. Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, run by terrorist Riaz Basra, is dedicated to Maulana Haq Nawaz Jhangvi, the founder of Sipah Sahaba. (Jhangvi’s anti-shia tapes are famous.) When the Lashkar activist who killed the Iranian diplomat Sadiq Ganji in Lahore in 1990 was about to be hanged Maulana Azam Tariq, instead of dissociating himself from the terrorist, actually led a campaign for the remission of his sentence and even offered diyat (blood money) to Iran. Another splinter of Sipah, Jaish-e-Muhammed, also reveres late Maulana Haq Nawaz jhangvi. In fact its leader Masood Azhar first wanted to name his militia Lashkar-e-Muhammad but was advised by his ‘handlers’ to avoid the association with Lashkar-e-Jhangvi. The sectarian Jaish was given territory near Balakot for guerrilla training for incursions into Kashmir, which makes the state party to the sectarian mess in Pakistan. It is expected that after the release of Maulana Azam Tariq the killings of doctors and prominent citizens of Karachi will taper off. This is not the first time the state has made a deal with him.That the state is involved in Shia killings in Karachi has been reported in the press in Pakistan. That there is a strong Deobandi-Sipah presence in Karachi with links with MQM Haqiqi, courtesy intelligence agencies, has also been noted. This makes Maulana Azam Tariq the most powerful man from Karachi to Gilgit. Indeed there are cities where his writ runs stronger than that of the state. A French scholar who is writing his biography and lived in his house in Jhang for a time observed that Maulana Azam Tariq’s day normally began by giving orders to the city’s administration. His orders have been equally effective when he was in jail. He is in fact the most powerful man of the Deobandi jehad organised by the state and is definitely more powerful than the chief executive of Pakistan on a given day on the basis of his ability to make things happen.State officers who kill Shias:The press is careful in reporting the sectarian truth in Karachi but some signs of a desperate kind of courage have come to light after the heart-rending murders of the Shia doctors in the city. Amjad Bashir Siddiqi wrote in The News (5 August 2001): ‘These sectarian organisations, with enormous money in their pockets, spend it without any limits to free terrorists or to bail them out, and more importantly, to ingress into the administration. Recently, money was spent to free a terrorist from the custody of CIA, who, three days later assassinated the chief of Sunni Tehreek, Saleem Qadiri. Lately, they are also trying to wriggle free another activist of their party now on death row and are ready to spend as much money as needed to ensure that Mansur, convicted for the killing of seven members of three families in PECHS back in 1993, gets bail’.The article goes on to describe how the Jaish-e-Muhammad leader Maulana Masood Azhar, whose entry was banned in Sindh because of the wave of sectarian terrorism, was stopped at Karachi airport and was asked to go back. Azhar phoned someone and the ban was immediately lifted to allow him to enter Karachi, after which he had a meeting with home secretary, Sindh. Azhar also later went to Ghotki in violation of the ban and was ignored by the local SDM there who was probably himself anti-Shia. The officer was pulled up, but later still, when Maulana Azhar tried to enter Sukkur and was stopped by the district administration it was pulled up this time for not giving him unhampered passage to anywhere in the city. The article adds: ‘Another serious problem has been the criminalisation of the jehadi elements, some of whom have been involved in sectarian killings. Recently, commissioner Karachi Shafiqur Rehman Khwaja gave Rs 200,000 to the prime suspect of Saleem Qadri’s murder, Arshad Polka, as compensation money for being a victim of terrorism. Polka had died during the attack on the Sunni Tehreek leader.’ The article goes on to link the state machinery with sectarian killers. Officers aligned to sectarian killers do two things: they get the criminals released in case they are caught after the act, and they see to it that caught terrorists are not allowed to be linked to the jehadi militias. The state is in fact the killer of the Shia in Pakistan.ISI and Shia killings:Monthly Newsline (June 2001) actually wrote that the intelligence agencies were ‘in’ with the sectarian terrorists: ‘The official quoted above has no hesitation in accusing the ISI of orchestrating such (Shia) murders through the militants of sectarian parties, adding that Sipah Sahaba terrorists are trained by the agency. The Sipah Sahaba are supported by the MQM Haqiqi Group. Sources reveal that Sipah Sahaba’s (sic!) Riaz Basra has been spotted in the company of a colonel who has also given him shelter in his house. Similarly, when three members of Lashkar-e-Jhangvi were picked up by the police, another colonel, who identified himself as their PRO, requested that they be released forthwith’. It should be noted that Riaz Basra has been described by the magazine as a Sipah activist! Karachi has killed 450 people in cases of sectarian violence since General Musharraf took over the government in October 1999. Lately the killing is one-sided because the Sunni-Deobandi combine is simply too strong to be countered by the Shia organisations.The shia-sunni conflict is as old as Islam itself in the Indian subcontinent, but it was effectively marginalised by a secular British raj which treated it as a law-and-order issue. After 1947, the policy was continued and the worst sectarian riots were defined by the state as no more than public disorder which the executive handled as violation of the CRPC, the legal code of criminal procedure. The clergy involved in the conflict gradually became tired as the citizens mixed and intermarried across the sect boundaries. The breakdown of the secular state under General Zia’s martial law brought the shia-sunni differences to centre-stage.General Zia versus the Shias:General Zia took over the populist slogan of Nizam-e-Mustafa and imposed ’shariah’ on Pakistan. It really meant the imposition of the Sunni Hanafi ‘fiqh’ or jurisprudence followed by the majority population from which the shias were excluded. The two early laws under ’shariah’ that he enforced failed miserably: the first, abolition of ‘riba’, failed because of the inability of the Islamic scholars to reinterpret Islam for modern conditions; the second, ‘zakat’, failed because the shia jurisprudence, called ‘Fiqha-e-Jaafaria’, had a conflicting interpretation of zakat. In 1980, an unprecedented procession of shias, led by Mufti Jaafar Hussain, laid siege to Islamabad and forced General Zia to exempt the shia community from the deduction of zakat. The concept of sunni ‘ushr’ (poor-due on land) is also rejected by shia jurisprudence.It appears that, when the anti-shia movement started in Jhang in the 1980s, General Zia not only ignored it but saw it as his balancing act against the rebellious shia community. This was worsened by Imam Khomeini’s criticism of General Zia. The rise of Maulana Haq Nawaz Jhangvi in the stronghold of big shia landlords in Punjab changed the sectarian scene in Pakistan. There is evidence that General Zia was warned of Jhangvi’s anti-shia and anti-Iran movement, but he ignored the warning and allowed it to blossom into a full-fledged religious party called Anjuman-e-Sipah-e-Sahaba of Pakistan (ASSP). In small towns, the old shia-sunni debate restarted with the fury that had become dampened in the past. The tracts which carried this debate were scurrilous in the extreme and helped the clerics to whip up passions. Meanwhile, in 1986, General Zia allowed a ‘purge’ of Turi shias in the divided city of Parachinar (capital of Kurram Agency on the border with Afghanistan) at the hands of the sunni Afghan mujahideen in conjunction with the local sunni population.Pakistan versus the Turis of Parachinar:Parachinar was the launching-pad of the Mujahideen attacks into Afghanistan and the Turis were not cooperative. Tehrike-e-Nifaz-e-Fiqha-e-Jaafaria had come into being during the dispute over zakat in 1980. When the Parachinar massacre occurred, it was led by a Turi leader, Allama Arif-ul-Hussaini. Allama Hussaini was murdered in Peshawar in August 1988, for which the Turis held General Zia responsible. That was also the year of General Zia’s death (within a fortnight of Hussaini’s murder) in an air-crash in Bahawalpur, and for a time there was rumour of shia involvement in his assassination although no solid evidence supporting this speculation was ever uncovered. The NWFP governor General Fazle Haq, whom the Turis accused of complicity in the murder of Allama Hussaini, was ambushed and killed in 1991. (Mehram Ali, the shia terrorist who blew up the Sipah leader Maulana Zia-ur-Rehman Farooqi at the sessions court in Lahore, was trained in Parachinar).In 1989, the Afghan mujahideen government-in-exile came into being in Peshawar after the Soviet retreat from Afghanistan. At the behest of Saudi Arabia, the exiled shia mujahideen of Iran were not included in this government. The Saudis, according to author Barnett R.Rubin in The Search for Peace in Afghanistan (page 103) paid over 23 million dollars a week during the 519-member session of the Mujahideen ’shura’ as bribe for it. In 1990, Maulana Jhangvi was murdered at the climax of his anti-Iran and anti-shia campaign of extreme insult and denigration. The same year, as if in retaliation, an activist of Sipah-e-Sahaba shot the Iranian consul Sadiq Ganji dead in Lahore. The tit-for-tat killings were thus started. Maulana Isar-ul-Qasimi, chief of the Sipah, was gunned down in 1991.Since then, the state of Pakistan has had to answer for the killing of more Iranians in Pakistan. Another consular officer was gunned down in Multan and a number of Iranian air force trainees were ambushed in Rawalpindi on inside information received by the killers, thus making the army not uninvolved in the sectarian mayhem. Most commentators in Pakistan are scared of telling the truth. Most inter-sectarian dialogue is fake since its great facade of speech-making is nothing but divine-sounding hogwash. Almost all Muslim clerics lie when it comes to sectarian deaths

Murderers united: Pakistan puppet masters (ISI) guide the Taliban killers

Murderers united: Pakistan puppet masters (ISI) guide the Taliban killers

Source: Times online

THE Taliban commander waited at the ramshackle border crossing while Pakistani police wielding assault rifles stopped and searched the line of cars and trucks travelling into Afghanistan.

Some of the trucks carried smuggled goods ‘ DVD players, car stereos, television sets, generators, children’s toys. But the load smuggled by Taliban fighter Qari Rasoul, a thickset Pashtun from Afghanistan’s Wardak province, was altogether more sinister.

Rasoul’s boot was full of remote-control triggers used to detonate the home-made bombs responsible for the vast majority of Nato casualties in Afghanistan. The three passengers sitting in his white Toyota estate were suicide bombers.

The policemen flagged down Rasoul’s car and began to search it. They soon found the triggers, hidden beneath a bundle of clothes in the back of the estate. They asked him who he was and who the triggersbelonged to. ‘I’m a Taliban commander. They belong to me,’ he told them.

Two policemen took Rasoul into their office in Chaman, a small town that borders Kandahar province in southern Afghanistan, and sat him down on a wooden chair.

Instead of arresting him, the elder policeman rubbed his thumb and index finger together and, smiling, said: ‘Try to understand.’

Rasoul phoned a Pakistani friend. Two hours later he was released, having paid the policemen 5,000 Pakistani rupees, the equivalent of about £40, each.

‘That was the only time I ever faced problems crossing the border with Pakistan,’ said Rasoul, who is responsible for delivering suicide bombers trained in Pakistani camps to targets in Afghanistan.

Pakistani support for the Taliban in Afghanistan runs far deeper than a few corrupt police officers, however. The Sunday Times can reveal that it is officially sanctioned at the highest levels of Pakistan’s government.

Pakistan’s own intelligence agency, the ISI (Inter-Services Intelligence), is said to be represented on the Taliban’s war council ‘ the Quetta shura. Up to seven of the 15-man shura are believed to be ISI agents.

The former head of Afghanistan’s intelligence agency, Amrullah Saleh, who resigned last week, said: ‘The ISI is part of the landscape of destruction in this country, no doubt, so it will be a waste of time to provide evidence of ISI involvement. They are a part of it.’

Testimony by western and Afghan security officials, Taliban commanders, former Taliban ministers and a senior Taliban emissary show the extent to which the ISI manipulates the Taliban’s strategy in Afghanistan.

Pakistani support for the Taliban is prolonging a conflict that has cost the West billions of dollars and hundreds of lives. Last week 32 Nato soldiers were killed.

LSE Report

According to a report published today by the London School of Economics, which backs up months of research by this newspaper, ‘Pakistan appears to be playing a double game of astonishing magnitude’ in Afghanistan.

To see the full London School of Economics report, go to thesundaytimes.co.uk/world

The report’s author, Matt Waldman, a Harvard analyst, argues that previous studies significantly underestimated the influence that Pakistan’s ISI exerts over the Taliban. Far from being the work of rogue elements, interviews suggest this ‘support is official ISI policy’, he says.

The LSE report, based on dozens of interviews and corroborated by two senior western security officials, states: ‘As the provider of sanctuary and substantial financial, military and logistical support to the insurgency, the ISI appears to have strong strategic and operational influence ‘ reinforced by coercion. There is thus a strong case that the ISI orchestrates, sustains and shapes the overall insurgent campaign.’

The report also alleges that Asif Ali Zardari, the president of Pakistan, recently met captured Taliban leaders to assure them that the Taliban had his government’s full support. This was vigorously denied by Zardari’s spokesman. Pakistani troops have launched offensives against militants in North and South Waziristan.

However, a senior Taliban source in regular contact with members of the Quetta shura told The Sunday Times that in early April, Zardari and a senior ISI official met 50 high-ranking Taliban members at a prison in Pakistan.

According to a Taliban leader in the jail at the time, five days before the meeting prison officials were told to prepare for the impending presidential call. Prison guards wearing dark glasses served the Taliban captives traditional Afghan meals three times a day.

‘They wanted to make the prisoners feel like they were important and respected,’ the source said.

Hours before Zardari’s visit, the head warder told the Taliban inmates to impress upon the president how well they had been looked after during their time in captivity.

Zardari spoke to them for half an hour. He allegedly explained that he had arrested them because his government was under increasing American pressure to end the sanctuary enjoyed by the Taliban in Pakistan and to round up their ringleaders.

‘You are our people, we are friends, and after your release we will of course support you to do your operations,’ he said, according to the source.

He vowed to release the less well-known commanders in the near future and said that the ‘famous’ Taliban leaders would be freed at a later date.

Five days after Zardari’s visit, a handful of Taliban prisoners, including The Sunday Times’s source, were driven into Quetta and set free, in line with the president’s pledge.

‘This report is consistent with Pakistan’s political history in which civilian leaders actively backed jihadi groups that operate in Afghanistan and Kashmir,’ Waldman said.

According to the source, during his visit to the prison Zardari also met Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, the Taliban’s former second in command, who was arrested by the ISI earlier this year with seven other Taliban leaders.

Baradar, who is from the same tribe as Hamid Karzai, the Afghan president, had allegedly approached the Afghan government to discuss the prospect of a peace settlement between the two sides.

Baradar’s arrest is seen in both diplomatic and Taliban circles as an ISI plot to manipulate the Taliban’s political hierarchy and also to block negotiations between the Kabul government and the Taliban leadership.

Shortly after Baradar’s arrest the ISI arrested two other Taliban members ‘ Mullah Abdul Qayyum Zakir and his close associate and friend Mullah Abdul Rauf. Both men were released after just two nights in custody.

Following his release, Zakir, who spent years in custody in Guantanamo Bay, assumed command of the Taliban’s military wing, replacing Baradar. Rauf, also a former Guantanamo inmate, was immediately appointed chairman of the Quetta shura.

‘To say the least, this is compelling evidence of significant ISI influence over the movement and it is highly likely that the release was on ISI terms or at least on the basis of a mutual understanding,’ the LSE report states.

The promotions of Zakir and Rauf will give Pakistan greater leverage over future peace talks, Taliban and western officials said.

To ensure that the Pakistani government retains its influence over the Taliban’s leadership, the ISI has placed its own representatives on the Quetta shura, according to these officials.

Up to seven of the Afghan Taliban leaders who sit on the 15-man shura are believed to be ISI agents. However, some sources maintain that every member of the shura has ISI links.

‘It is impossible to be a member of the Quetta shura without membership of the ISI,’ said a senior Taliban intermediary who liaises with the Afghan government and Taliban leaders.

The LSE report states: ‘Interviews strongly suggest that the ISI has representatives on the shura, either as participants or observers, and the agency is thus involved at the highest levels of the movement.’

The two shura members who receive the strongest support from the ISI are Taib Agha, former spokesman for Mullah Omar, the Taliban supreme leader, and Mullah Hasan Rahmani, the former Taliban governor of Kandahar, according to the Taliban intermediary and western officials.

Strategies that the ISI encourages, according to Taliban commanders, include: cutting Nato’s supply lines by bombing bridges and roads; attacking key infrastructure projects; assassinating progovernment tribal elders; murdering doctors and teachers; closing schools and attacking schoolgirls.

ISI agents hand chits to Taliban commanders who use them to buy weapons at arms dumps in North Waziristan.

The Taliban’s ‘plastic bombs’ ‘ the low metal content improvised explosive devices (IEDs) that kill the majority of British soldiers who die in Afghanistan ‘ were introduced to the Taliban by Pakistani officials, according to Taliban commanders, the Taliban intermediary and western officials. The materials allow Taliban sappers to plant bombs that can evade Nato mine detectors.

Rasoul, the Taliban commander from Wardak province, also alleged that the ISI pays 200,000 Pakistani rupees (£1,600) in compensation to the families of suicide bombers who launch attacks on targets in Afghanistan.

‘They need vehicles, fuel and food. They need ammunition. They need money and guns. They need clinics and medicine. So who is providing these things to the Taliban if it’s not Pakistan?’ a former Kabul police chief said.

In the eastern province of Khost, one commander described how Pakistani military trucks picked his men up from training camps in Pakistan and ferried them to the Afghan border at night.

Once at the border, Pakistanis dressed in military uniform gave the commander a list of targets inside Afghanistan. Taliban fighters then ferried the weapons and ammunition into Afghanistan using cars, donkeys, horses and camels.

‘We post our men along our supply routes to protect the convoys once they are on Afghan turf,’ said the Khost commander. ‘The [US] drones sometimes bomb our convoys and many times they have bombed our ammo stores.’

Camps within Pakistan train Taliban fighters in three different sets of skills: suicide bombing, bomb-making and infantry tactics. Each camp focuses on a different skill.

Pakistan’s support for the Taliban has sparked friction between the home-grown Taliban groups and those who are bankrolled to a greater extent by the ISI.

Many lower-level commanders in Afghanistan are angered by the degree to which the ISI dictates their operations.

‘The ISI-backed Taliban are destroying the country. Their suicide bombings are the ones that kill innocent civilians. They are undoing the infrastructure with their attacks,’ said a Taliban commander from Kandahar province.

Most commanders said they resented their comrades who received the largest slice of ISI support. They also said they knew about the ISI’s influence over their senior leadership. ‘There is already mistrust among the low-level fighters and commanders,’ the Taliban intermediary said. ‘But they don’t really know the extent of it. They don’t believe that our leaders are ISI spies.’

Major-General Athar Abbas, Pakistan’s senior military spokesman, called the claim that the ISI has representatives on the Quetta shura ‘ridiculous’. He said: ‘The allegations are absolutely baseless.’

Farhatullah Babar, a spokesman for the Pakistani president, said: ‘There’s no such thing as President Zardari meeting Taliban leaders. This never happened.’

To see the full London School of Economics report, go to thesundaytimes.co.uk/world

The key player

Pakistan’s Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) became enmeshed in Afghanistan after the Soviet invasion in 1979. The CIA used it to channel covert funds and weapons to Afghan mujaheddin groups fighting the Soviet army during the 10-year conflict.

A decisive factor in the Soviet defeat was the CIA’s decision to provide surface- to-air Stinger missiles.

Saudi Arabia, which, from the mid-1980s matched American funding for the insurgency dollar for dollar, also used the ISI to channel funds to the mujaheddin.

The American effort was promoted and supported by the late Texas congressman Charles Wilson, who fought to raise awareness and cash for the Afghan cause in the United States. His role was portrayed by Tom Hanks in the movie Charlie Wilson’s War.

The ISI continued to support groups of Afghan fighters long after the Russian withdrawal in 1989, often providing backing for brutal warlords in an attempt to install a pro-Pakistani government in Kabul.

The ISI backed the Taliban during their rise to power between 1994 and 1996. Pakistan’s prime minister at the time, Benazir Bhutto, believed the Taliban could stabilise Afghanistan.

Source: http://criticalppp.org/lubp/archives/12865

Photos from the Kyrgyz city of Osh

Photo: clashes in the Kyrgyz city of Osh

Ситуация в Оше обострилась 10 июня, когда в городе начались межэтнические столкновения между киргизами и узбеками The situation worsened in Osh on 10 June, when the city began inter-ethnic clashes between Kyrgyz and Uzbeks

Столкновения быстро переросли в беспорядки с десятками убитых и сотнями раненых с обеих сторон The clashes quickly escalated into riots with dozens killed and hundreds wounded on both sides

Ситуация обострилась настолько, что власти Киргизии попросили Россию ввести в страну миротворческие войска The situation deteriorated to such an extent that the Kyrgyz authorities have asked Russia to enter the country of peacekeeping troops

Тысячи этнических узбеков, живущих в Оше, покинули свои дома и двинулись к границе с Узбекистаном Thousands of ethnic Uzbeks living in Osh, fled their homes and moved to the border with Uzbekistan

Среди беженцев в основном старики, женщины и дети, многие из них в состоянии паники The refugees mostly old men, women and children, many of them in a state of fear

Наплыв беженцев оказался столь мощным, что власти Киргизии и Узбекистана были вынуждены открыть границу для свободного перемещения людей The influx of refugees was so powerful that the authorities of Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan were forced to open its border to the free movement of people

События в Оше вызвали тревогу среди узбеков, живущих в России. The events in Osh caused alarm among Uzbeks living in Russia. В Москве узбеки собрались у Дома правительства, высказав свой протест против происходящего In Moscow, Uzbeks gathered at Government House, expressing their protest against what is happening

Kyrgyzstan Govt. Begins Draft, All Men Under 50 Inducted Into National Service

tank and a group of young people

Kirghiz security forces ordered to shoot to kill on the rioters continued in the south of the country.

The Provisional Government of Kyrgyzstan announced the mobilization of military service. All liable for military service at the age of 50 should be the middle of the day on Sunday to appear at the place of recruitment.

The death toll continues unabated in Kyrgyzstan unrest, according to local media, has reached 82 people, more than a thousand injured.

Inter-ethnic clashes between Kyrgyz and Uzbeks began in Osh in the south of the country on the night of Friday. Rioters burned whole blocks of houses, shops, bazaars, streets rampant looting.

According to reports from Jalal-Abad, in disrupted electricity, burned the building of the University and the local broadcaster. The crowd seized a military unit here.

According to some reports, the attackers seized weapons and stolen APCs.

According to the Ministry of Emergency Situations of Kyrgyzstan, in Jalal-Abad region was shot by fire brigades, who set the fire.

It was reported that at the urban racetrack of Jalal-Abad gathered about five thousand young people who need to provide them with buses to go to Osh.

“The situation goes over the edge”

On Saturday, the head of the interim government of Kyrgyzstan Roza Otunbaeva sent a letter asking for help to Russian President Dmitry Medvedev.

“Since yesterday evening the situation goes over the edge, we need the input of other military forces to arrest the situation. In this connection, we appealed for help to Russia”, – said Otunbayeva.

It is reported that representatives of the Kyrgyz and Uzbek communities in the country also appealed to the president of Russia with a request “urgent assistance in establishing peace, stability and constitutional order in the conflict zone – in southern Kyrgyzstan, through the introduction of Russian military peacekeepers.”

A spokesman for Russian President Natalya Timakova said that the president believes unrest in Kyrgyzstan, internal conflict, and while Russia does not see the conditions for participation in its settlement.

According to Natalya Timakova, the decision to send peacekeeping troops to Kyrgyzstan CSTO may be made only in accordance with the UN Charter and after consultation with all members of the CSTO.

Security Council transition

The Provisional Government of Kyrgyzstan established the Security Council under the President of the transition period.

Security Council was abolished by the decision of former President Kurmanbek Bakiyev in the end of last year. The Provisional Government was formed after a coup in early April.

Security Council Secretary was appointed colonel of intelligence Alec Orozo. Previously, he served as deputy head of the Security Council, but in 2007, has resigned.

June 14 Alec Orozo is expected to take part in the consultation National Security Council Secretary of the Organization of the treaty on collective security to develop a response to the situation in Kyrgyzstan.

Crowds of refugees on the border

The representative of the Red Cross said tens of thousands of refugees fled their homes to escape the pogroms and looting.

“Stuatsiya worse with each passing hour. Off the gas and electricity, which also means cutting off the water. Shops and markets are closed. There is a danger of food shortages,” – said in a statement the Red Cross mission in Kyrgyzstan.

Uzbek refugees on the border with Uzbekistan, told our correspondent that a group of armed Kirghiz are engaged in looting, killing of ethnic Uzbeks and torching homes.

On Saturday afternoon Rosa Otunbayeva announced that Kyrgyzstan opens border with Uzbekistan.

“We have decided to open the border in the direction of Uzbekistan in Tashkent, and found a full understanding of women, children and old people can cross the border”, – said Otunbayeva.

NATO Supply Trucks Attacked, This Time In Balochistan

NATO trucks attacked in Balochistan

Balochistan, Jun 13: NATO supply tankers enroute to Afghanistan were once again attacked in Pakistan as unidentified gunmen targeted several
trucks in Mach area of Balochistan’s Bolan district.
According to reports, some heavily armed assailants opened indiscriminate fire on the supply trucks flattening their tyres.

Two of the five oil tankers overturned resulting in spillage of thousands of litres of fuel, The Daily Times reports.

However, there were no casualties in the attack.

This was the second attack on the NATO convoy in the country in less that a week.

Earlier, at least eight people were killed and six others injured as militants attacked a NATO convoy torching several supply trucks near Sang Jani area of Islamabad.

ANI

Bakiev brothers are behind unrests in Osh region of Kyrgyzstan

Roza Otunbaeva: Bakiev brothers are behind unrests in Osh region of Kyrgyzstan

12/06-2010 13:36, Bishkek – News Agency “24.kg”, By Aizada KUTUEVA

“Bakiev brothers stir up unrests in Osh region of Kyrgyzstan”, interim president Roza Otunbaeva stated the press.

The interim government was informed about forthcoming unrests, she said. “But we think they will start by 20th of June, closer to Referendum but unrests happened earlier. This demonstrates strong desire of ousted power to sabotage referendum and return power. But we will prevent them doing that. We are sustained by friendly countries. At the present we are doing all of best to stop further bloodshed”, Roza Otunbaeva noted.

Osh region faces food shortage, all market outlets are closed, she noted. “We will supply the south by food and needments to avoid humanitarian disaster. Besides we closed schools in Osh region for this reason students will hold exams in autumn”, Roza Otunbaeva said.

Additional forces deployed to the south coordinated by special envoy for the south Ismail Isakov, commandants of Osh region and Osh city Bakyt Alymbekov and Kursan Asanov.

“I urge people not to panic and think we forget them. Let me remind that peace begins with everybody”, Roza Otunbaeva added.

URL: http://eng.24.kg/community/2010/06/12/11977.html