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American Resistance To Empire

Pakistani Taliban TTP Wage Total War Upon Pak Govt From Relative Safety of Afghan Sanctuary

[Fourth suicide bomber strikes Pakistan in one day ; 6 suspected Jamaat-ul-Ahrar militants killed in CTD raid in Multan ]

Bombers hit judges van, govt office

the nation pakistan

 

Driver killed, four civil judges hurt in Peshawar ;
5 dead in Mohmand hit

Bombers hit judges van, govt office

PESHAWAR/Mohmand Agency – Only a couple of days after deadly Lahore suicide attack, three Taliban bombers struck at two places in north-west of the country yesterday, killing seven people and wounding at least a dozen others.

One bomber targeted civil judges in Peshawar, while two others attacked a government building in Fata’s Mohmand Agency, unnerving citizens whose growing sense of security has been shaken by a terror storm gripping the country for last three days.

Two suicide bombers launched an assault at the office of the Political Agent in Mohmand around 9am, opening heavy fire at the security men in bid to enter the complex.

One of them was gunned down by the Levies personnel but another exploded his vest, killing five people and injuring seven others. A third bomber was neutralised during the search operation launched in the area.

Later in the day, a suicide bomber rammed his motorcycle into a van carrying several civil judges that was travelling through Hayatabad area and detonated his explosive vest with a big bang.

“It was a suicide attack,” senior police official Sajjad Khan told AFP. He said the van driver and a passerby were killed in the attack, which was claimed by the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan. Five people – including at least four judges, three of them female – were injured, he added.

Eyewitnesses and police said the terror strike happened near Sitara Market, PDA Building in Hayatabad Phase-V, resulting in death of the driver of the vehicle, Khursheed, and injuries to four civil judges.

The injured civil judges were identified as Asif Jadoon and Tehreem Sabahat, Rabia Abbassi and Amna Haider.

All of them were on way back to their homes after attending their routine duty. The condition of all the injured persons has been stated stable.

Asif Jadoon had decided the case of Afghan national Sharbat Gula, an Afghan woman who was deported after she was arrested for illegally obtaining Pakistani nationality.

PTI chief Imran Khan was due to visit Hayatabad Medical Complex at 4:30pm in connection with a ceremony. The site is located at a seven-minute walking distance from where the blast occurred. The visit was put off. Imran’s visit to Peshawar Press Club was also cancelled due to the suicide blast in the city.

SSP Operations Sajjad Haider told media persons that apparently the target of the suicide bomber was the government vehicle, but they were investigating why exactly the van was selected for the attack.

Chief Capital City Police Tahir Khan said eight to nine kilograms of explosives was used in the attack as Bomb Disposal Squad was still examining the intensity of the powerful suicide blast. He said the police were vigilant on all the external routes linking with tribal areas, however, it was difficult to check every person entering the city.

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa chief minister and PTI chairman strongly condemned the heinous act of terrorism and termed it a reaction of operation Zarb-e-Azb. They also blamed federal government for not implementing the National Action Plan in its true spirit.

In Mohmad incident, officials told The Nation that the pair of suicide bombers opened indiscriminate fire at the Levies personnel to get into the offices’ complex. However, the security personnel promptly retaliated and killed one of them while the other blew himself up.

Five people including three Levies personnel were martyred in the explosion at the government compound in Ghalanai Town. Seven others wounded in the assault included children.

Later, police said, another suicide bomber blew himself up when security forces surrounded him during a search operation in the area.

“One suicide bomber blew himself up once spotted and challenged by security agencies,” the army said in a statement, adding the guards shot dead a second bomber.

Medical Superintendent (MS) Agency Headquarters Hospital in Ghalanai, Dr Shahid Muhammad said the martyred personnel included Sepoy Taj Alam, Sepoy Zar Said, Sepoy Yasir Khan and two civilians Tahir khan and a teacher – Pazir Gul.

The injured were identified as Havaldar Shah Room, Sepoy Hayat, Sepoy Sheraz and two children Haris and Moony, he added. The injured were shifted to Peshawar hospital for treatment.

The Jamaat-ur-Ahrar, a faction of the Pakistani Taliban, claimed responsibility in a statement emailed to journalists, vowing to continue their assaults on government installations.

The same Taliban group had claimed an attack in Lahore on Monday in which 13 people were killed and over 80 injured. The martyrs included seven police, two of them high officials – DIG Ahmed Mobeen and Additional DIG Zahid Gondal.

An eye witness Munir Khan, who teaches at the nearby Higher Secondary School in Ghalanai, said he was in the classroom when he heard indiscriminate firing followed by huge blasts.

“I thought our school was under attack, as we had already been alerted against a possible terrorist assault,” he said. He added that all the students in the school were scared as windowpanes of several rooms shattered due to the blast.

Drawing Master Pazir Gul, who also died in the blast, came to the school early in the morning, parked his car and left the school saying he had to go to bazaar for some work, Munir Khan said. He was nearing the main gate of the attacked complex when one of the suicide bomber blew himself up, killing Gul and others on the spot, Khan narrated.

Another deceased, Tahir Khan, had recently returned from Saudi Arabia and was visiting the offices’ complex to see his friend, Levies Havldar Kabeer Khan, who was on duty at the main gate.

After the incident curfew was imposed in the area and bazaars in Ghalanai and Ekkaghund were close down.

The Peshawar-Bajaur road was also closed for traffic till 2pm. Security forces conducted search operations in Ghalanai, Babi Khel, Halki Ghandab, Sheikh Banda, Garo Kando and others areas.

Meanwhile, officials said a party of the security forces came under fire in Mohmand. However, five militants were killed in the retaliation. Ammunition and explosives was recovered from possession of the dead militants.

 

 

Bombers hit judges van, govt office

 

OUR STAFF REPORTERs/Agencies

This news was published in The Nation newspaper. Read complete newspaper of 16-Feb-2017 here.

US Intelligence Agencies Withholding Intelligence From Commander-In-Chief?

US spies reportedly keeping intelligence from Trump

foxnews

“I’ve talked with people in the intelligence community that do have concerns about the White House, about the president, and I think those concerns take a number of forms,” he said, according to the paper. “What the intelligence community considers their most sacred obligation is to protect the very best intelligence and to protect the people that are producing it.”

VIDEO: NUNES ON INTELLIGENCE LEAKS:  NO DOUBT  A CRIME WAS COMMITTED

The report points out that, historically, intelligence officials have held back information about how spies gather information, but in those cases, the information was not held back due to concerns over the president’s trustworthiness.

In January, Sen. Charles Schumer, D-NY, took on Trump over his criticism of the intelligence service.

“Let me tell you, you take on the intelligence community, they have six ways from Sunday at getting back at you,” Schumer told MSNBC. “So even for a practical, supposedly hard-nosed businessman, he’s being really dumb to do this.”

The Office of the Director of National Intelligence denied the accusation late Wednesday that intelligence officials were withholding information from Trump.

“Any suggestion that the U.S. intelligence community is withholding information and not providing the best possible intelligence to the president and his national security team is not true.”

The Week magazine published an article Tuesday about how America’s spies “took down Michael Flynn,” Trump’s former national security adviser.

Damon Linker, a senior correspondent, wrote, “These leaks are an enormous problem. And in a less polarized context, they would be recognized immediately for what they clearly are: an effort to manipulate public opinion for the sake of achieving a desired political outcome. It’s weaponized spin.”

Flynn’s ouster was a blow to a White House struggling to find its footing in Trump’s first weeks in office.

The questions about Russia only deepened late Tuesday when The New York Times reported that U.S. agencies had intercepted phone calls last year between Russian intelligence officials and members of Trump’s 2016 campaign team.

Current and former U.S. officials who spoke to the Times anonymously said they found no evidence that the Trump campaign was working with the Russians on hacking or other efforts to influence the election.

Rep. Jason Chaffetz, chairman of the House Oversight Committee, told Fox News on Wednesday that he had sent a letter to the Justice Department’s inspector general urging it to investigate the leaks that led to Flynn’s removal.

Flynn maintained for weeks that he had not discussed U.S. sanctions in his conversations with Russia’s ambassador. He later conceded that the topic may have come up.

Still, reports that there is a divide between Trump and his spies is concerning.

A White House official told The Journal that there is no information “that leads us to believe that this is an accurate account of what is actually happening.”

The Week linked to a report in Bloomberg that said, “Normally intercepts of U.S. officials and citizens are some of the most tightly held government secrets. This is for good reason. Selectively disclosing details of private conversations monitored by the FBI or NSA gives the permanent state the power to destroy reputations from the cloak of anonymity. This is what police states do.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report

REALLY?…so, what was there, A HALF-MILLION lSIS Lunatics?

[Lying Pentagon Claim of 45,000 ISIS Terrorists Killed, Aug 11, 2016 ; Russia killed 28,000 militants in Syria, third of all ISIS forces]

[By these official kill estimates, ISIS forces should be completely eliminated by now, yet everybody still claims to be fighting armies of thousands of fanatics…WHERE THE HELL ARE THEY ALL COMING FROM? 

Shouldn’t we know by now the nationalities of the majority dead fanatics?  It should be an easy matter for the mighty US Military to force whichever little “piss ant” state is recruiting and sending these nuts?  I have heard Pentagon spokesmen trying to mislead us my entire life.  I am getting pretty sick of it.]

SpecOps Commander: 60,000 ISIS Fighters Killed by US Troops

military dot com

In this undated file photo released by a militant website, which has been verified and is consistent with other AP reporting, militants of the Islamic State group hold up their weapons and wave its flags in a convoy. (Militant website via AP, file)
In this undated file photo released by a militant website, which has been verified and is consistent with other AP reporting, militants of the Islamic State group hold up their weapons and wave its flags in a convoy. (Militant website via AP, file)

Pentagon Has A Plan To “Blanket the Globe” w/Surveillance and Attack Drones

Pentagon plans full-scale demo of TERN; ‘high-endurance’ drones will blanket globe

washington times

System ‘would allow for ‘persistent intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance’

The Pentagon has started Phase III on development of its Tactically Exploited Reconnaissance Node (TERN).(YouTube, DARPA)
The Pentagon has started Phase III on development of its Tactically Exploited Reconnaissance Node (TERN).(YouTube, DARPA) more >
– The Washington Times

The Pentagon is planning a demonstration for late 2018 that will prove to the world that it can blanket the globe with versatile drones.

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency announced funding on Monday for Phase III of its Tactically Exploited Reconnaissance Node (TERN) project. The effort, made in partnership with the Office of Naval Research and Northrop Grumman, will give officials the ability to launch long-range, high-endurance operations from anywhere in the world.

In short, TERN will use vertical launch drones with offensive and defensive capabilities from over 100 small deck helicopter-capable ships.

 

“It would allow the Navy and the Marine Corp to conduct persistent intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance — and targeting and strike operations virtually anywhere in the world at ranges greater than 600 nautical miles,” DARPA said via its YouTube channel on Monday.

Each drone is capable of carrying 1,000 pounds of payload.

“DARPA, ONR, and Northrop Grumman are currently planning a series of at-sea flight tests of a full-scale technology demonstration system in late 2018,” the agency added. “TERN aims to dramatically improve the quality, capability and reach of future Navy [Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance/Strike aircraft], and Marine expeditionary operations around the world.”

Deep-State Traitors Waging War Against the American Presidency, Not Just Against Donald Trump

[Trump was elected to disrupt business as usual in Washington.  Now that he has begun to do just that, the swamp-dwellers and their overlords are running scared, scared of losing control of the govt apparatus.  It is certain that Trump will eventually fight back against the hidden leakers.  His only course of action may be to interfere with their lines of communication, probably implying some sort of govt control of Facebook and other social media.  The police state begins in small steps.  Bureaucratic civil war may be just the beginning.]

[SEE: Trump Giving Washington the Cure of Chaos, Swamp-Dwellers In Shock ; German intelligence ‘finds no evidence of Putin disinformation campaign’]

Are Deep-State Leakers Defending Democracy or Corroding It?

The Atlantic

 

Is the gusher of leaks about the White House the work of bureaucrats who want to undermine the president? And if so, is that a good or bad thing?

Evan Vucci / AP
To paraphrase presidential candidate Donald Trump, somebody’s doing the leaking. But who, and why, and does it represent a defense of American democratic norms or a death knell for them?There’s no shortage of theories. Some of the damaging leaks are emerging from the White House, as part of internecine warfare between rival factions. But the more consequential ones, including the revelations that forced the resignation of National Security Adviser Michael Flynn Monday night, have hinged on information from the intelligence community.Trump has tried to change the focus away from the substance of the leaks to their provenance. On Tuesday, he tweeted this:

He then followed that up Wednesday morning:

Trump may want to change the subject, and his imprecations about the danger of leaks look a lot like the tears of a crocodile, but that doesn’t mean the questions he raises aren’t important.

The president referred to a column by Eli Lake in Bloomberg View, calling Flynn’s ouster a “political assassination.” Lake rejects the White House spin that Flynn was fired simply because of a breach of trust with Trump. Instead, he blames Democratic politicians and, even more importantly, the intelligence community:

Flynn was a fat target for the national security state. He has cultivated a reputation as a reformer and a fierce critic of the intelligence community leaders he once served with when he was the director the Defense Intelligence Agency under President Barack Obama. Flynn was working to reform the intelligence-industrial complex, something that threatened the bureaucratic prerogatives of his rivals.

But there are other theories, some of which overlap. At Washington Free Beacon, a site that is conservative but has generally been anti-Trump, Adam Kredo reports on what he says is “a secret, months-long campaign by former Obama administration confidantes to handicap President Donald Trump’s national security apparatus and preserve the nuclear deal with Iran,” including Ben Rhodes, a former top aide to Barack Obama.

Rhodes rejected the Free Beacon story. “It’s totally absurd and doesn’t make any sense,” he wrote in an email. “I don’t know who the sources are for these stories and I don’t even understand the false conspiracy theory—how would getting rid of Flynn be the thing that saves the Iran Deal? It’s an effort to make the conversation about anything other than the actual story of what happened with Russia.”

Even if there’s no grand conspiracy, there are any number of potential individual culprits.  There have also been a stream of stories about frustration, demoralization, and fear within the federal workforce.Central to the Flynn story is Sally Yates, a career prosecutor who became a high-ranking Justice Department official in the Obama administration. She became acting attorney general after Trump’s inauguration. Yates informed the White House counsel in late January that Flynn was not telling the truth when he claimed he had not discussed sanctions against Russia with that country’s ambassador, and that the Justice Department was concerned that he was vulnerable to blackmail. A few days later, Yates said Justice would not defend Trump’s executive order on immigration, and she was fired. That means Yates loyalists might have an incentive to leak damaging information.And Trump has waged a months-long campaign against the intelligence community. During the campaign, he repeatedly rejected the consensus assessment that Russia had hacked the Democratic National Committee and Clinton campaign chair John Podesta in order to interfere with the election, only in January saying he accepted that conclusion. The day after his inauguration, Trump went to the CIA, where he sought to bury the hatchet. “I am so behind you,” Trump said. “There is nobody that feels stronger about the intelligence community and the CIA than Donald Trump.” In his tweets Wednesday, he notably did not mention the CIA, but his feud with the intelligence community is apparently back in action.

As a general rule, it’s probably unwise to pick a fight with spies, a point Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer made in early January. “Let me tell you, you take on the intelligence community, they have six ways from Sunday at getting back at you,” he said. “So even for a practical, supposedly hard-nosed businessman, he’s being really dumb to do this.”Yet Schumer’s warning, even if realistic, is chilling: Not only does it raise the possibility of unelected, faceless bureaucrats using classified information to retaliate against a duly elected president. That would be true even if it didn’t come after the intelligence scandals of the Obama years, in which revelations from Edward Snowden showed the vast powers that the NSA had accrued and could use, even on American citizens, with little or no oversight.Some commentators have dubbed what’s going on the revenge of the American Deep State, in reference to the existence—real, imagined, or a little bit in between—of a bureaucratic shadow government that constrains the legitimate government in places like Turkey. In Turkey, generals devoted to the secularist ideology of national founder Mustafa Kemal Ataturk have repeatedly toppled governments that they worried were threatening that ideology. In January, when a dossier of explosive and unverified claims about Trump was published, Glenn Greenwald, the leftist journalist who helped break the Snowden story, warned that liberals who cheered the dossier were in effect cheering for an intelligence coup. Greenwald specifically labeled these actions the work of a Deep State, writing, “But cheering for the CIA and its shadowy allies to unilaterally subvert the U.S. election and impose its own policy dictates on the elected president is both warped and self-destructive. Empowering the very entities that have produced the most shameful atrocities and systemic deceit over the last six decades is desperation of the worst kind.”

The idea of a “Deep State” constraining Trump was not new. Back in February, when the idea of a President Trump still seemed wildly implausible, Megan McArdle wrote that he wouldn’t be able to do that much damage, even if he won, thanks to bureaucrats who could slow-walk or even block his priorities. “This is the reality: Most of what you want to do to Washington won’t get done—and neither will much of what you want to get done outside of it, if you insist on taking Washington on,” she wrote. After the inauguration, some liberals took new heart in that idea.But the Deep State motif has really gained in popularity over the last few days, as the pace of leaks undermining Trump has accelerated. “The fact the nation’s now-departed senior guardian of national security was unmoored by a scandal linked to a conversation picked up on a wire offers a rare insight into how exactly America’s vaunted Deep State works,” Marc Ambinder writes at Foreign Policy. “It is a story not about rogue intelligence agencies running amok outside the law, but rather about the vast domestic power they have managed to acquire within it.”It’s not just the leaks. At Slate, Phillip Carter argued that pushback from career officials had helped prevent Trump from instituting a plan to reinstate torture, labeling this the work of a deep state.

Not everyone buys the analogy.

“I wouldn’t call what is going on in the United States a deep state,” said Omer Taspinar, a professor at the National War College and nonresident fellow at the Brookings Institution who is an expert on both national security and Turkey.

The Turkish Deep State is something different, Taspinar contends: a clandestine network of retired intelligence officials, mafiosi, and others who engage in prosecutable criminal activity. He offered a hypothetical scenario that would echo the sorts of tactics the Turkish Deep State deployed in the war against Kurdish separatists: Imagine if white nationalists with ties to the administration conducted false-flag attacks intended to gin up concerns about Islamist terror and enable Trump’s tough immigration controls.

“It was not the judiciary, the civil society, the media, or the bureaucrats trying to engage in checks and balances against a legitimately elected government,” he said. “What we’re witnessing in the U.S., it’s basically the institutional channels.”

Even leaking, which sometimes does flirt with violating the law, doesn’t deserve to be tarred as the work of a nefarious deep state, Taspinar said.

“Anything that would try to portray what the leakers, or what the government officials try to do as a ‘deep state’ is an attempt to delegitimize whistleblowers or people who believe that what the government is doing right is against the Constitution,” he said. “Any kind of bureaucratic resistance is too innocuous to be labeled as the activities of the deep state.”

Perhaps there needs to be a better term for the resistance that bureaucrats offer to presidents they oppose. (After all, some experts contend they also hobbled Obama on some issues.) But one common element, from whistleblowers to bureaucratic leakers to violent Deep State thugs in Turkey, is a commitment to certain norms and practices, and the sense that the only way to defend norms is to violate them on a case-by-case basis.

And as the Turkish example shows, that works—up to a point. The problem is that when a deep state pushes too far, it can undermine itself and end up empowering that which it seeks to prevent. The Turkish military repeatedly toppled governments, starting in 1960. But more recently, they power has waned. Current President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has used allegations of Deep State plotting against the government as a pretext for mass arrests of dissidents, detention of journalists, and further crackdowns on civil society. In July, some elements of the Turkish military attempted a coup, but were too weak to accomplish it. Even Turkish liberals who disliked Erdogan condemned the coup. The Deep State now seems to weak to work real change, but the threat is strong enough to allow Erdogan to discredit legitimate opposition.

There’s a great gulf between the Turkish situation and the Trump administration—though some analysts have not hesitated to draw parallels between the two men’s styles. Trump’s American opponents face, like their Turkish counterparts, face the challenge of fostering leaks and bureaucratic resistance that can hem in the Trump administration and reveal any wrongdoing. If they go too far, however, they risk catastrophe in two direction: They might empower an unaccountable intelligence agency, with dangerous long-term effects; or they might inspire such a backlash from Trump and his allies in Congress that he works to destroy the bureaucratic system, removing an essential constraint on the president’s power. The question isn’t what the good choice and bad choice are; it’s what the least worst choice is.

Pak Army Knows For Sure That TTP Taliban Are Based In Afghanistan

Pakistan hands over evidence of TTP faction operating from Afghanistan

express tribune

 

Relatives mourn the death of a blast victim during a funeral ceremony in Lahore on February 14, 2017. PHOTO: AFP

Relatives mourn the death of a blast victim during a funeral ceremony in Lahore on February 14, 2017. PHOTO: AFP

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan shared on Wednesday with Afghanistan evidence of terrorist sanctuaries being used by Jamaatul Ahrar to carry out attacks inside the country.

A faction of Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), Jamaatul Ahrar claimed responsibility for a terrorist attack outside Punjab Assembly in Lahore on Monday which claimed the lives of 13 people.

Afghan Deputy Head of Mission Syed Abdul Nasir Yousafi was called-in to the Foreign Office and handed over the dossier.

“An aide-memoire containing details of the terrorist attacks and supporting information was shared with the Afghan deputy head of mission,” the foreign office said.

Country mourns after Taliban attack in Lahore

The Afghan envoy was conveyed grave concerns about the continuing terrorist attacks on its soil by the terrorist outfit, the statement said.

“Attention of the senior diplomat was also drawn to the earlier actionable intelligence shared by our authorities with the Afghan side,” it added.

Afghanistan, it said, was urged to take urgent measures to eliminate terrorists and their sanctuaries, financiers and handlers operating from its territory.

The attack by the militant group came three days after it announced it will carry out a series of attacks on government installations around the country. A spokesperson for the group warned in a statement that Monday’s bomb was “just the start”.

Afghan president condoles with PM

It underscored the challenges faced by Pakistan in its push to stamp out militancy, even as security dramatically improved in 2015 and 2016.

Lahore, the country’s cultural capital, suffered one of Pakistan’s deadliest attacks during 2016 when Jamaatul Ahrar carried out a suicide attack in a park during Easter. The attack led to a death toll of more than 70, including many children.

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