Scapegoating Pakistan for US Failures, Including Jalahuddin Haqqani

[The Western press is filled with accusations against Pakistan for the mutual US/Pakistani creation of the Haqqani army, to a lesser extent, Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, as well as the Taliban and “al-Qaeda,” all creations of the American Imperial plan for global conquest.  By creating the many separate armies of Islam, the CIA has deviously and brilliantly manipulated the world into a world war against their Islamic armies.  Until the people of the world learn to see these things as facts, we will continue to be played for suckers by the American/British elite, who have us by the behavioral modified “balls.”]

Unending game in Afghanistan

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If there is an overriding message from the Taliban attack on the United States Embassy and NATO’s headquarters in Kabul, it is that the tragedy in Afghanistan, scripted to a large extent by the Americans, is no nearer ending than it was two, five, or ten years ago. The U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan shrugged off Tuesday’s assault, which lasted 20 hours and left at least 11 Afghans dead, as “harassment rather than a direct attack.” He would. Over the last few months, the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) has made out that it has successfully diminished the Taliban’s fighting capacities. Such spin enables the U.S. to claim a victory of sorts as some 30,000 of its troops are pulled out of Afghanistan, in keeping with the withdrawal President Barack Obama has promised by 2014. In some areas, including Kabul, ISAF has handed over to Afghan security forces. But Tuesday’s attack, and two previous attacks on well-protected high-profile targets in the Afghan capital — the British Council in August and the Intercontinental Hotel in June — have exposed the extreme fragility of the country’s security. It strengthens the hands of those who want western troops to remain in Afghanistan. There are bound to be fresh doubts now about the other part of the U.S. strategy — talking to the Taliban, or some sections of it. The U.S. accusation that the attack was the work of the Pakistan-based Haqqani network has only underscored the enduring complexity of getting to peace in Afghanistan, a full decade after “Operation Enduring Freedom” was launched in the wake of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

In these 10 years, the U.S.-led war has taken a horrific toll of civilian lives and welfare. In a report released in July, the United Nations estimated that the violence in the country claimed the lives of 1,462 non-combatants in the first six months of 2011. While the report attributed most of the deaths to “anti-government elements,” it held security forces responsible for 14 per cent of the deaths, with air strikes as the main killer. Even for a country that has known no peace for more than three decades, such high civilian casualties are difficult to absorb. Afghanistan’s double jeopardy is that the violence is certain to continue as long as western troops remain on its soil, but it has no mechanisms in place to ensure security and stability if and when those troops leave. The so-called end-game in anticipation of the American pull-out has only increased the bloodshed as the players — Afghan, regional, and international — compete to entrench themselves and outwit one another.

US Threatens Pakistan Over Iranian Pipeline Deal

Clashing interests: US threatens sanctions over Iran gas deal

“The proposed Pakistan-Iran pipeline, if built, could raise concerns under the Iran Sanctions Act,” US Embassy in Islamabad. PHOTO: AFP

ISLAMABAD: The United States has renewed its opposition to the multi-billion-dollar Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline, warning that Islamabad’s continuous pursuit of the plan may invoke US sanctions.

The issue was raised during the fourth round of Pak-US strategic dialogue on energy that concluded in Islamabad on Thursday without any major tangible gains.

Officials familiar with the development told The Express Tribune that the US Special Envoy for International Energy Affairs, Ambassador Carlos Pascual, ‘advised’ Islamabad to abandon its plan to import gas from Iran. He proposed instead that Pakistan pursue the TAPI project, a gas pipeline through Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India.

Pakistan has reservations about the TAPI project due to security concerns about Afghanistan and unsettled issues relating to gas prices.

The South Pars gas field in Iran is the largest in the world, meaning that its production costs for Iran are significantly cheaper than those for gas extracted from smaller fields in Central Asia, including the Caspian Sea fields to which Turkmenistan has access.

(Read: Central Asia, making up for lost time)

A US embassy spokesperson confirmed that Washington is concerned with Pakistan’s current direction, and the issue was raised in Ambassador Pascual’s meetings. “The proposed Pakistan-Iran pipeline, if built, could raise concerns under the Iran Sanctions Act. We are encouraging Pakistan to seek alternatives”, read a terse response from the US embassy.

The renewed opposition from the US came just days after high level talks between Pakistan and Iran, where the two neighbours vowed to go ahead with the project that would bring its first gas flow by 2014.

Water and Power Minister Naveed Qamar, who co-chaired the meeting, denied to The Express Tribune that such a discussion took place.

However, another senior government official said that despite opposition from the US, Pakistan would not abandon the project, as an agreement has already been signed with Tehran.

The two-day strategic talks ended without any significant developments, despite initial high hopes. The US seems reluctant to provide significant investment in Pakistan’s financially crippled power sector.

A senior government official told The Express Tribune that the US special envoy has informed Pakistani authorities that it would be naïve to expect large support from Washington in the power sector until there is an institutional overhaul in the way the energy sector is regulated and managed.

He said that the US has urged Pakistan to introduce major reforms by scrapping redundant policies and implementing new regulations. The latest US stance highlights the urgency to reform the sector that has stalled economic growth. Despite special cabinet committees, the government has failed to carry out reforms over the past three years.

According to a US embassy handout, Ambassador Pascual reaffirmed the United States’ long-term commitment to working with Pakistan to establish a commercially viable and sustainable power sector. It further stated that, during the talks, Pakistan underscored its will to strengthen energy sector governance and efficiency, pursue regulatory reforms, improve financial management, and create a business climate that helps drive investment.

The US, welcoming these plans which were elaborated in the Integrated Energy Sector Report, maintained that these measures will help develop a stronger foundation for investment. Both sides agreed to continue technical exchanges in areas that can help improve power availability.

“As all Pakistanis know, reliable and affordable energy is critical to Pakistan’s prosperity,” said Ambassador Pascual. “Without it, businesses can’t operate and families can’t light and cool their homes. Pakistan’s future depends on power.”

The US also welcomed Pakistan’s continued engagement with international financial institutions and the private sector to assess the feasibility of viable hydropower projects, a reference to the $12 billionDiamer Bhasha dam, for which the Asian Development Bank has agreed to provide funding.

 

Published in The Express Tribune

Who Is Killing People in the Middle East?

Who Is Killing People in the Middle East?

ORIENTAL REVIEW

Russian and Chinese refusal to support UN sanctions against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad at the end of August has caused a dramatic outburst of criticism in Western media and from the local human rights activists. On Tuesday the Facebook group ‘Syrian Revolution 2011’ posted a banner in Russian condemning Moscow for allegedly ‘killing the Syrians’. Let’s have a brief outlook on who is actually killing in Syria and other Arab countries.

Despite a common prejudice the rioters opposing the Syrian authorities are by no means ‘peaceful protestors’. The Syrian army and police fight against well-trained and properly armed professional raiders supported by the West and the fifth column inside Syria.

A police station in Hama, raided by ‘peaceful demonstrators’. 12 policemen were assassinated inside the building.

Since April the total record of Syrian soldiers, policemen and security officers assassinated by the ‘demonstrators’ has reached 600, while the number of injured is even higher. Many of them are killed by knifes with utmost cruelty. Every second shot by the long range sniper fire from upper locations (tops of the multistoried buildings) precisely above or under the vest. That’s a notably professional pattern of action. Although typical for Syria Soviet and Russian-made arms are being widely used in the clashes, many victims were hit by the weapons of Western origin having higher killing power, including pump rifles. There are many mutilated by improvised explosive devices.

An assassinated Syrian soldier having his throat cut by the assaulters.

A number of other photos of injured and killed Syrian soldiers were published on the RT web-site.

The tactics of provocations is another distinctive feature of opposition’s modus operandi set to keep the situation destabilized and create havoc and bloodshed. Having the most significant gangs already dispersed by the governmental forces, the opposition renews this tactics. Here is the message from Elena, who has relatives in Syria:

‘The gangsters were planning a series of debacles on 27th day of Ramadan (August 26). This is a special day for Muslims, Laylat al-Qadr(the Night of Destiny), when the sky is believed to be open and Allah is fulfilling all dreams. They wanted to organize a series of explosions and assassinations to cause people’s outrage. Syrian security agencies were timely informed about these plans and managed to detain around 200 plotters. There were several foreign specialists in subversive actions among the detained as well as Arab mercenaries from Qatar, Saudi Arabia and other countries. According to the evidence obtained, they were about to capture al Abbasein and al-Amaween squares in Damascus by pretending to organize pro-Assad march. When on the site, they schemed to change the slogans generating chaos, scuffles and eventually victims among the civilians.’ (Source in Russian)

NATO’s ‘humanitarian intervention’ in Libya has already led to unprecedented sufferings of the Libyan people. The so-called ‘new government of Libya’ has shown to their former patrons in the UK, France and Italy that they do not care much about the sentiments of international community. The mass lynching of black-skinned foreigners are now typical on the Libyan territories controlled by anti-Qaddafi forces. Mustafa Abdul Jalil, one of the leaders of Libyan Transitional National Council (TNC), has even admitted that ‘there are no bloodless revolutions… We should not be surprised if some casual victims of skirmishes are the case. Our soldiers cannot afford wasting time for identifying detained personalities. Their loyalty to the new authorities will be determined subjectively.’

A necropolis of blacks on a street of Tripoli

As a result the number of victims of the new regime among Libyan residents from Chad, Niger and Sudan is counted in thousands. Khamis al-Bass, a Saudi journalist reports from Libya: ‘On my eyes several uniformed men dragged an entire black family off their asylum, accused them in espionage for Qaddafi and hanged them all.’

The chairman of the African Union commission, Jean Ping, said many members of the Union had not yet recognized the TNC as the legitimate government of Libya because of reports of anti-black violence. He warned that the rebellion had left Libya unstable and its huge arms caches prey to looting by extremists and smugglers.

The perspective of turning Libya into a new lawless territory resembling Somalia or Liberia is thrillingly tangible. The civil war is gaining momentum as the NATO Special Forces get seemingly restrained from further involvement into conflict. Their loss toll is already too high. According to several insider reports, e.g. British SAS has lost 21 to 35 soldiers, most of them during the storm of Tripoli and helicopter crash on the Algerian border in August. So NATO apparently decided to pump the ‘new Libyan government’ with more weapons in the endeavor to turn the scale of the on-going faceoff in Libya in favor of TNC and wash the hands. For example, this week the Russian news agencies reporteda massive arms shipment to the TNC from Moldova. An air-craft IL-76 arrived in Kishinev from Benghazi on Tuesday to be loaded by a ‘cargo of Moldavian army’s stores with expired date of usage’. Defense Ministry of the Republic of Moldova officially commented that ‘the shipment is being carried out according to the contract between the Ministry and a Latvian company’. Most likely the delivery of the second-hand Soviet weapons (there are no other sources actually available at Moldavian stores) to Benghazi was arranged by K.S.Avia Ltd, a Latvian Riga-based transportation firm and used Soviet arms supplier. (This company is notorious for multiple exports of the second-hand and unconditional military equipment from Ukraine, Belorussia and Poland to the Yemeni weapons market, which is a known hub for the cheap arms spreading throughout Arabian peninsular and beyond. Ironically, until recently this market has been totally controlled by the family of Yemeni president Ali Abdullah Saleh. The current uprising in this country against acting president is a reflection of Yemeni and Saudi inter-elitist rivalry for the control over this super-lucrative business.)

Factually we can see that a small mediator from Latvia, a NATO country, starts playing a key role in channeling old Soviet-made weapons to the Afro-Asian conflict zones. The outcome of such arming would be extremely dangerous. That will lead to the escalation of civil war in Libya and other hotspots meaning more victims and more sufferings for the civilians. We have already written about this strategy in previous posts here and here.

The last but not least, it would be surprising if NATO pumping up Islamic Orient with old Soviet arms had not played the propagandistic card of ‘Russian weapons killing Arabs’. Indeed, since late August they have launched a ridiculous press campaign in Yemen, accusing Russia (!) of ‘supplying equipment to Saleh regime to be used against peaceful pro-democracy protesters’. In a propaganda stupor they are even claiming that the presidential palace in Sana’a is being defended by the Russian tanks T-92, a model that does not exist in nature! Here we will not get into details of US$ 4 billion deal for military modernization program of Yemeni army and police that United States provided to President  Saleh in the framework of counter-terrorism cooperation in 2010. We just take a note that the ‘military convoys’ coming to Yemeni port of Hodeida are contracted by the same dubious Latvian company K.S. Avia transporting arms to the Libyan Transitional National Council.

So who is killing people in the Middle East?