Pakistan’s Policy of Using Terrorist Proxies Now Biting It On the Ass

‘Pakistan policy to liberate Kashmir with jihadis has backfired’

The Hindu

Husain Haqqani. File Photo.
AP

Husain Haqqani.

Haqqani said the fact of the matter is that the Pakistani military and civilian leadership easily gets distracted by delusions of fighting India and its influence in Afghanistan.

Pakistan’s involvement with jihadi groups at the highest level aimed at “liberation” of Jammu and Kashmir has backfired, ex-diplomat Husain Haqqani said on Tuesday following the deadly terror attack in Lahore.

And even as its decades-old policy has backfired, the Pakistani establishment is reluctant to declare an all-out war against terrorist groups, Mr. Haqqani, the country’s former envoy to the U.S., told PBS in an interview.

“Pakistan’s involvement with jihadi groups initially was primarily as a strategic investment, which was supposed to bring them benefits through influence in Afghanistan and the liberation of Jammu and Kashmir from India. That has backfired,” said Mr. Haqqani.

“Now even though it has backfired, Pakistan has been very selective in going after these jihadi groups. That is the reason why the jihadis pick specific targets like Shias, Ahmadis or Christians, to improve their recruitment, playing on various kinds of polarisation, and taking advantage of that to advance in society further,” he said.

“The real problem lies in that attitude of the government of trying to protect the parties in Punjab, while going after the terrorists in other parts of the country, but not in the Punjab. That’s what has come back to bite them,” he said.

Mr. Haqqani said the fact of the matter is that the Pakistani military and civilian leadership easily gets distracted by delusions of fighting India and its influence in Afghanistan and allowing certain jihadi groups to pursue those objectives, not realising that they can end up having offshoots, just like the Pakistani Taliban emerged out of the Afghan Taliban.

“The Pakistani component of the Afghan Taliban ended up becoming a separate group. And now Jamaat-ul-Ahrar has broken away from the Pakistani Taliban. Pakistan has to make a decision to go after all terrorist groups, as well as the mindset that breeds these terrorists. And Pakistan has not been able to make that decision,” he observed.

Jamaat-ul-Ahrar claimed responsibility for Sunday’s grisly suicide attack in Lahore that killed 72 people.

Mr. Haqqani said the Pakistani establishment is not taking action against India-centric terrorist groups.

“The state has not taken the measures that are necessary to isolate them all. So, there are groups like Lashkar-e-Taiba and Jaish-e-Mohammed which attack India. They are spared. Once they are spared, it’s very possible that some of their members will actually join splinter groups which will attack Pakistan,” he argued.

Israeli Court Blocks Leviathan Sweetheart Deal, Keeping Trillions Cubic Feet Gas In Ground

[High-Pressure In Leviathan Basin Cuts Into Potential Israeli Profits ; ZIONIST Stench Killing Leviathan “Bonanza” for Big Oil ; Leviathan Gas Still Trapped Between Jews Seeking Profit and Jews Seeking Discounts]

Israeli gas decision will have some impact on Cyprus, expert says

Cyprus mail

Elias Hazou

WHEREAS a court ruling in Israel complicating plans to develop that country’s natural gas fields does impact the development of Cyprus’ Aphrodite prospect, the effect is a lateral one, an energy analyst has told the Cyprus Mail.

Israel’s Supreme Court on Sunday issued a ruling barring the government from giving a 10-year guarantee for no legislative or taxation changes to Texas-based Noble Energy and their Israeli partners Delek.

The court decision invalidated the stability clause in a deal reached last year between Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the consortium holding concessions on the massive Leviathan play as well as other gas fields.

The judges said the government is not in the position to make such a long-term concession and gave the sides a year to come up with an alternative arrangement for the government to provide stability assurances.

Noble called the court’s decision “disappointing” and said it risked causing a delay in the $5 billion-$6 billion project to develop the 22 trillion-cubic-foot gas field.

Noble and Delek have held off on developing Leviathan until the deal with the government was approved, but had planned to start production in 2019.

According to Charles Ellinas, the development in Israel does affect Cyprus’ own gas plans, but only tangentially.

“Aphrodite was always linked to the development of Leviathan. Noble’s top priority is to develop and monetise Leviathan, since it is the bigger and more important field,” said Ellinas.

“Once Leviathan’s development is assured, then on the back of that Noble and their partners would be able to develop Aphrodite, because of the synergies – same companies and so forth.”

Either way, the analyst added, nothing has been happening with Leviathan as no gas markets have been found yet.

Sales to Egypt were never likely to happen due to price considerations, whereas exporting to Europe seems an even more remote possibility.

“As things stand, Turkey remains the only credible market for Leviathan. However, although Turkish-Israeli relations are thawing, they are not there just yet. And there is also the question of needing to solve the Cyprus problem before a pipeline can be built from Israel to Turkey.”

In short, court decision or not, at the moment Noble do not have the cash to develop Leviathan, so Aphrodite must necessarily also be put on hold.

“On a PR level, at least Noble can now blame the Israeli government for any delays,” he observed.

Still, the Israeli court’s decision does not necessarily stymie Leviathan’s development.

“The court threw out the stability clause of the deal between the Israeli government and the energy companies, on the grounds it was unconstitutional,” explained Ellinas.

“But the rest of the deal is intact, and it’s up to the government to tweak it in order to make it work.”

Indeed, as reported by the Oil & Gas Year website, Delek Group on Monday sounded upbeat that development of the Leviathan gas field could still proceed on schedule.

Yossi Abu, the chief executive of Delek subsidiaries Delek Drilling and Avner Oil, was quoted as saying the group would “act so that the timetable won’t be hurt.”

Discovered in 2010, the Leviathan field is estimated to hold natural gas reserves of around 21.9 trillion cubic feet (tcf)

Cyprus’ Aphrodite field is estimated to hold 4.5 tcf.