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Thank you Raymond Davis – by Mahvish Afridi

Was Raymond Davis working on operation OBL? Did ISI suspect he was onto something big and hence they apprehended him despite US pressure?

Thank you, Raymond Davis!

The honour (ghairat) brigade in Pakistani media (sponsored by Aabpara) had presented CIA Operative Raymond Davis as an insult to Pakistan’s national honour and security.

However, yesterday’s (May 1, 2011) surgical operation by the US special forces in Abbottabad and the elimination of the most vile terrorist Osama Bin Laden suggests that Raymond Davis’ presence was much needed, not only for the security of the US citizens but also for the innocent and peace loving citizens of Pakistan. After all, Raymond Davis was tracking wanted terrorists and was not giving them support or manufacturing apologetic arguments for them.

Now that the US special forces have successfully eliminated the Al Qaeda’s chief, the following few aspects merit consideration.

Diminished utility of OBL and recruitment of fresh jihadi proxies

The ISI’s cooperation or lack of resistance in the elimination of OBL must be seen in the context of diminished utility of this man (OBL) in ISI’s international jihad enterprise. He was more like a used cartridge, which had to be disposed off and replaced by fresh, more loyal contingent of jihadis.

9/11 happened a decade ago and since then, an alternate Islamofascist terrorist leadership has been created by the Aabpara empire (ISI’s intelligence + Saudi money). Heading this is the Jalaluddin Haqqani network which has been relocated from North Waziristan to Kurram Agency where they have given a fresh boost to the genocide of Shia Pushtuns of Parachinar. This group has been bolstered by Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) that is headed by Hafiz Saeed, recently released by the ISI-backed Supreme Court of Pakistan.

Along with them, a whole range of other terrorist groups and individuals have been made ready which include Malik Ishaq (soon to be released by the Supreme Court), Masood Azhar, Qari Saifullah Akhtar and Illyas Kashmiri. Most of these dangerous terrorists are in their prime and have the backing of Pakistan’s judiciary along with the continual support of ISI. They either belong to Sipah-e-Sahaba, Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, Jundullah, Jaish-e-Muhammad or other splinter groups.

Political proxies

In the decade after 9/11, Pakistan’s security establishment has also prepared Imran Khan (of PTI) as the political face of the Taliban. A suave, urban and polished ex-playboy, Imran’s narcissistic ploy of (mis)using his philanthrophy for political gain is fully supported by the boys in Aabpara.

Bounty

Even though Pakistan’s ISI did not have a direct involvement in tracking or killing OBL, their provision of logistic support and lack of resistance to the US operation is very revealing. They have not given this indirect support to the US out of any philanthropic notion or for combating terrorism. They were more interested in the 25 million dollar US taxpayer money (bounty for OBL) while also circumventing and sidestepping the elected government by proving the ISI’s utility to the US government.

ISI’s media strategy

In the coming days and hours, the tactics employed by the ISI’s proxies in the media will be that now that OBL has been eliminated, the US should pack up and leave. Pertinent questions as to why OBL was residing in the middle of a Military Cantonment town will be casually brushed aside.

Both the right wing Urdu media and pseudo-liberal English dons (camouflaged proxies of the ISI) will come to the aid of their security establishment masters. Asif Zardari and the PPP will be cursed and any mention of Generals Kayani and Pasha will be kept to a minimum.

The loudest anti-US voices will come from the upper class urban elites (and their middle class employees) who will increase their anti-US fervour to ensure that the next generation of Islamofascist terrorists are not harmed and the jihadi adventurism of GHQ continues unabated. Many articles will be written about the extra-constitutionality of the US killing terrorists on Pakistani soil but never any mention of what these terrorists were doing in my country in the first place!!

End of OBL or the beginning of a long struggle?

For too long, the outside world has bought into the rubbish and lies that are peddled by a compromised and corrupt Pakistani media. The end of OBL is simply the beginning of what is a long struggle by Pakistan, the United States and the global community in countering the menace of Islamist terrorism.

Pakistan’s English speaking elites can no longer cry foul everytime a terrorist is killed by a drone attack. After the ridding of Osama bin Laden, an increasing number of Pakistanis wish that the other international terrorists and organisations (SSP, LeT, LeJ, TTP, Jundullah, JeM) bred by the security establishment meet a similar fate. We have lost 35,000 Pakistanis that include Shaheed Salmaan Taseer, Shaheed Shahbaz Bhatti and Shaheed Benazir Bhutto in this struggle. Their deaths should not be in vain.

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  • I can’t help wondering if Raymond Davis, the American who was arrested by Pakistanis after shooting people in Lahore while apparently on a C.I.A. operation, was somehow involved in this operation to confirm bin Laden’s presence, and if that wasn’t a reason for the hush-hush nature of his work. And of course this also raises questions about how Osama got to Abbottabad from Afghanistan and what if anything the Pakistanis knew. President Musharraf and others always told me and others that Osama was in Afghanistan, not Pakistan, and even suggested that he might have died. So much for Musharraf.

    One question is whether the Osama killing will lead to intelligence that will help track down Zawahri and other Al Qaeda leaders or operatives, whether in Pakistan or elsewhere in the world. It might also help work out terror financing networks. Imagine the effort to go through Osama’s laptop.

    May 2, 2011, 12:00 AM
    After Osama Bin Laden…
    By NICHOLAS KRISTOF
    http://kristof.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/05/02/after-osama-bin-laden/?hp

  • TRISH00L TRISH00L
    Was Raymond Davis working on this operation? Did ISI suspect he was onto something big and hence they apprehended him despite US pressure?

    akshatkaushal akshat kaushal
    @NickKristof hints at a possible link between Raymond Davis and the killing of Osama today http://goo.gl/B0OfH

    Tauseef31 Mohammad Tauseef
    @nabeelbutt87 Yeah. Maybe the ISI didn’t want them to know. Thanks to Raymond Davis and his likes that he z pinned. #OBL #Pakistan

    KO KO
    The ISI must be too busy sulking… “@Saba_Imtiaz: Compare this silence from Pk to the barrage of leaks over Raymond Davis. #ghairatwins”

    amishra77 Akhilesh Mishra
    @marvisirmed No, but I am telling you that Raymond Davis was tracking OBL before he was busted by ISI. That is why he was busted.

    _AEK_ A.E.K
    Here comes the pass from Raymond Davis, and Barack Obama scores..It’s a goal!!

    @faisalqureshi:
    Raymond Davis -> Standoff b/w C.I.A. & I.S.I -> Imran Khan dharna -> OBL found. Coincidence?

    kushanmitra Kushan Mitra
    apparently the Pakistanis had no clue about the raid until after it occured. this intelligence is what Raymond Davis and his ilk were after.

    Melhathnofury Mel Mel
    I guess Raymond Davis’ intel in February was closer than he thought…tonight proved that they were on the right track. #osama

  • The fact bin Laden was apparently living in relative luxury not far from Islamabad could pose awkward questions for Pakistan.

    “For some time there will be a lot of tension between Washington and Islamabad because Bin Laden seems to have been living here close to Islamabad,” said Imtiaz Gul, a security analyst.

    “If the ISI had known then somebody within the ISI must have leaked this information. Pakistan will have to do a lot of damage control because the Americans have been reporting he is in Pakistan… This is a serious blow to the credibility of Pakistan.”

    But defence analyst and former general Talat Masood said the fact bin Laden was killed in a joint operation would limit the damage to Pakistan’s image

    “There should be a sigh of relief because this will take some pressure off of Pakistan,” said defence analyst and former general Talat Masood. “Pakistan most probably has contributed to this, and Pakistan can take some credit for this – being such an iconic figure, it’s a great achievement.”

    Read more: http://www.vancouversun.com/news/Senior+official+Pakistan+confirms+Laden+death/4707430/story.html#ixzz1LDE5e7DT

  • Hiding bin Laden: Finger of suspicion at ISI

    Chidanand Rajghatta, TNN |
    May 2, 2011, 12.05pm IST

    WASHINGTON: Just hours after American Navy Seals shot dead Osama bin Laden in a compound in Pakistan on Sunday, US President Barack Obama shot down the Pakistani security establishment’s attempt to claim joint credit for the operation.

    In a ten-minute television address, Obama left no doubt that US personnel alone were involved in the action that brought bin Laden to justice. ”Today, at my direction, the United States launched a targeted operation against that compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan,” Obama said, adding, ”A small team of Americans carried out the operation with extraordinary courage and capability.”

    While Obama said ”It’s important to note that our counterterrorism cooperation with Pakistan helped lead us to bin Laden and the compound where he was hiding,” he made no mention of any Pakistani military role in the operation. US officials in background briefing made it clear that no country, much less Pakistan, was informed of the operation.

    In fact, there was not even a word of thanks for Pakistan. Instead, Obama said: ”Tonight, I called President Zardari, and my team has also spoken with their Pakistani counterparts. They agree that this is a good and historic day for both of our nations. And going forward, it is essential that Pakistan continue to join us in the fight against al-Qaida and its affiliates.”

    The finger of suspicion is now pointing squarely at the Pakistani military and intelligence for sheltering and protecting Osama bin Laden before US forces hunted him down and put a bullet in his head in the wee hours of Sunday. The coordinates of the action and sequence of events indicate that the al-Qaida fugitive may have been killed in an ISI safehouse.

    US analysts uniformly suggested that the Pakistani security establishment’s claim of a role in the operation is clearly aimed at ducking charges of its military’s possible role in hiding bin Laden. ”This is hugely embarrassing for Pakistan,” was a common refrain on US TV channels throughout the night.

    In fact, top US officials have openly suggested for months that the Pakistani military establishment was hiding bin Laden. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton came closest to publicly exposing Pakistan’s role last May when she accused some government officials there of harboring Osama bin Laden and Mullah Omar.

    ”I am not saying they are at the highest level…but I believe somewhere in this government are people who know where Osama bin Laden and al-Qaida and where Mullah Omar and the leadership of the Taliban are,” Clinton said on May 10 last year, adding, ”We expect more cooperation (from Pakistan) to help us bring to justice capture or kill those who brought us 9/11.”

    Taken together with President Obama’s pointed reference to President Zardari and leaving out any mention of Pakistani forces’ involvement, it would seem that Washington believes that Pakistan’s military intelligence establishment, including the ISI, was sheltering bin Laden. The ISI was accused as recently as last week by the top US military official Admiral Mike Mullen of having terrorist links, and named as a terrorist support entity by US officials, according to the Guantanamo cables.

    Lending credence to the charges is the fact that US forces homed in on bin Laden in Abbottabad, which is a cantonment just 50 kms from Islamabad, where the Pakistani military has a strong presence. The place where bin Laden was killed is only kilometers from the Kakul military academy, where many Pakistani military elites, including some of its ISI cadres, graduate from.

    While US officials are tightlipped about precise details, analysts are trying to figure out whether the compound that sheltered bin Laden was an ISI safehouse. There is also speculation as to whether Hillary Clinton was referring to this when she made her pointed remarks last May.

    US officials have said for years that they believed bin Laden escaped to Pakistan after the American bombing campaign in Afghanistan. But Pakistani officials, including its former military ruler Pervez Musharraf, insisted that he was in Afghanistan, even as Afghan officials would angrily refute it and say he is in Pakistan. In the end, the Americans and Afghans were right on the money.

    http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/us/Hiding-bin-Laden-Finger-of-suspicion-at-ISI/articleshow/8141352.cms

  • میں تو الله پر یقین رکھنے والا بندہ ہوں اور جزا اور سزا پر بھی یقین رکھتا ہوں ، ان دہشرگردوں اور طالبانوں پر الله کا عذاب ہے

    ان کا یہ المیہ ہے کہ ان کی زندگی عذاب ہوتی ہے اور موت کے بعد ان کے اپنے ان کو یاد نہیں کرتے ہیں اور نہ عزت دیتے ہیں بلکے ان کا نام لینا بھی پسند نہیں کرتے ہیں ،ضیاء الحق ،بیت الله محسود ،زرقاوی وغیرہ اور اب اسامہ ان لادن کی موت پر نہ کسی مفتی ،عالم نے تعزیت کی اور نہ ہی کسی جماعتی نے ، نہ ہی کوئی سوگ منایا جائے گا اور نہ ہی دعا .
    اب اسامہ کو امریکی اجنٹ قرار دے دیا جائے گا
    قاضی حسین احمد نے اپنے انٹویو میں کہا تھا کہ اسامہ بن لادن نے منصورہ کا دورہ کیا تھا اور جماعت اسلامی کو القاعدہ کا ساتھ دینے کی افر کی تھی ، پر اب کوئی جماعتی اسامہ کو اپنے ماننے کے لیہ تیار ہی نہیں

    میں کب سے کہتا تھا کہ حمید گل کو الٹا لٹکاؤ اور اس کی چھترول کرو سب پتا چل جائے گا کے خودکش دھماکے کون کرتا ہے ،اسامہ اور دجال ملا عمر کہاں ہیں . حمید گل ،عمران ،جماعت اسلامی سب کو پتا ہے کہ یہ کیا گیم ہو رہا ہے اور خودکش دھماکے کون کر رہا ہے اور طالبان کہاں ہیں .

    حمید گل لگتا ہے طالبان شورا کے اجلاس میں مصروف ہے اسی لیہ عمران ،منور حسن اور حمید گل منظر سے غائب ہیں

  • The location of bin Laden’s final laird tells the tale.

    So he has: a quilt of messages in reaction to the 9/11 attacks, hung at Manhattan’s Washington Square Park after the attacks. Click on the image for larger view. (© Pierre Tristam/FlaglerLive)
    It would be one of the supreme ironies of this story if that Abbottabad bunker didn’t reveal the cynical hypocrisy at the core of bin Laden’s character. He wasn’t living in a cave. He wasn’t living in the Spartan severity of his very brief Afghan years, after he left the comforts of Sudan—after the Sudan kicked him out in 1996—and before the American invasion of Afghanistan drove him out five years later. This man, who made a trip to the United States in 1978 so his son could get medical treatment, was living in a fortified compound in the comforts of a city known for its country club, its Aspen-like air, its gigantic golf club and its appeals to tourists on their way to the splendors of Kashmir. He was living in a town named for James Abbott, memorializing the days of the British raj. The town was hard-hit by the 2005 earthquake in Kashmir, which killed 75,000 people, and therefore a recipient of more emergency American aid on top of the $1.2 billion to $1.5 billion a year Pakistan is receiving from U.S. taxpayers. It’s not a stretch to say that bin Laden, who spent his fortunes long ago, was partly living on American dole.
    That’s his duplicity.
    Then there’s Pakistan’s, that alleged ally in the war on bin Laden and Islamism. That flaunting compound where bin Laden was living, 35 miles north of the capital, was built in 2005, after the earthquake. It’s eight times higher than the residences around it. It’s surrounded by a wall of up to 15 feet high topped with barbed wire. It’s in a city filled with retired military and intelligence officers. Pakistan’s ISI, the country’s Inter-Services Intelligence, has been playing a double game with the United States since 1979. It created the Taliban in the 1990s. It protected bin Laden in Pakistan until 2001, and very likely enabled his escape from Tora Bora in December 2001. It’s impossible that the ISI didn’t know who was living in that compound in Abbottabad. It’s virtually impossible that the ISI or other elements of the Pakistani military weren’t not only protecting bin Laden, but abetting him.
    Pakistan’s duplicity isn’t over. Its long-term interests in Afghanistan aren’t to facilitate American interests, but to further its own against India’s, as it did in the 1990s, when it formed the Taliban as a hedge against India there and in Kashmir, and as a replacement for American withdrawal from the scene after the defeat of the Soviet Union in Afghanistan in 1989. That’s Pakistan’s battles. It’s no longer those of the United States. Should Pakistan choose to harbor other terrorists with presumptions of attacking the United States, there’s no begrudging a special ops team to do to them what they did to bin Laden. A few of those terrorists should be quaking in their galabias right about now.
    But as brilliant as the operation against bin Laden was on Sunday, it discredits for good the carpet-bombing approach of the previous years, which largely continues. Barack Obama wisely stopped referring to “the war on terror.” That’s only one out of three overdue corrections. Celebrations over Iraq and Afghanistan, to say nothing of celebrations for justice reclaimed over broader swaths of the Middle East, still await.

    http://flaglerlive.com/21515/beyond-bin-laden

  • Opinion: Bin Laden may be dead, but his ideology lives on
    May 2, 2011 — Updated 1520 GMT (2320 HKT)

    News of Osama bin Laden’s death at the hands of the U.S. has sparked fears of retaliation attacks.

    STORY HIGHLIGHTS
    Gohel: Pakistani authorities will have been kept in the dark because of a lack of trust
    Protests and propaganda set to follow the death of Osama bin Laden, he says

    Gohel: Retaliation attacks are likely, but may not happen immediately.
    Editor’s note: Dr. Sajjan Gohel is the Director of International Security at intelligence and security think tank the Asia Pacific Foundation.

    (CNN) — What role did Pakistan play in the operation against Osama bin Laden?

    I would be surprised if Pakistan played a significant role in the operation to apprehend and kill Osama bin Laden, based on the fact that the drone strikes that the U.S. conduct in the tribal areas are done covertly, the authorities in Pakistan are not informed until the very last minute, because of the fear of information leaks.

    An operation of this scale in the central urban heartland of Pakistan would mean that information would be kept on a need-to-know basis. Only a few people within the CIA would have known about this operation, it would definitely not have gone out to another country’s intelligence agency, especially when there’s so little trust with the ISI [Inter-Services Intelligence, the Pakistani intelligence service].

    There has been a deterioration in relations at a strategic level — the ISI leaked out the name of the CIA station chief in Islamabad, and a person working out of the U.S. embassy was detained by the Pakistani authorities, allegedly working for the CIA.

    The fact that the U.S. has been conducting drone strikes is an illustration of the fact that there has been little cooperation — if not none — with the Pakistani authorities.

    What was Pakistan’s part? Security expert on Osama death Bin Laden’s death affects the world Clinton: Taliban cannot wait us out
    We’ve seen the evolution of relations between Pakistan and America go from ‘frenemies’ to outright enemies.

    Historically, have the U.S. and Pakistan had good ties?

    The relationship has always been problematic, flawed, lacking trust. It goes back to during the time of the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan: The U.S. and the West turned to Pakistan to provide and assist the Mujahideen in removing the Soviets from Afghanistan.

    There was a strategic relationship, but following the Soviets leaving Afghanistan, that relationship went into suspension.

    It was only restarted following 9/11: The Bush Administration turned to General Pervez Musharraf, the military ruler of Pakistan, who at that time had become a social pariah.

    He was asked to round up the leadership of al Qaeda, of the Taliban, to prevent them from creating an infrastructure inside Pakistan. In return Pakistan would be rewarded with generous aid from the United States and other countries.

    Musharraf was very skilled at saying all the right things, but doing virtually nothing, and that scenario continued, from 9/11, right up to the end of Musharraf’s tenure as ruler of Pakistan in 2007.

    It took a long time but the U.S. finally began to realise that the promises the Pakistanis were making were empty promises: Nothing of real tangible significance was achieved. Information that was being shared ended up being passed on to al Qaeda, and counterterrorism operations were therefore flawed.

    The Obama Administration disagreed with the Bush Administration on issues like Iraq, Guantanamo Bay, but the one issue they absolutely built upon was on the drone strikes policy, because if they couldn’t deal with al Qaeda on the ground, they would try to tackle them from the skies. Drone strikes were increased substantially under the Obama Administration, because there was this lack of trust.

    The perception was that the U.S. would support Pakistan publicly while pressurising them privately. Over time we’ve seen the public support wane. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, in Pakistan last year, made it clear that she could not believe that the authorities in Pakistan did not know where bin Laden was.

    What has the reaction been in the region to news of bin Laden’s death?
    Keep in mind the fact that there are protests when drone strikes take place in the tribal areas. This operation to take out Osama bin Laden was in the urban heartland of Punjab. This is the core of where the military establishment is from, so there is going to be a falling out.
    The life of Osama bin Laden Obama: Justice has been done Hideout wasn’t remote cave after all Inside the place bin Laden was killed

    Publicly, the Pakistanis will try to make out that they were aware of the operation, and that they played a role in it. Privately, they will be seething that this was done on their territory.

    And there will be protests. The radicals and the extremists inside Pakistan –whose infrastructure has not been dismantled, as Musharraf had promised — they will organize mass protests. There will be propaganda by the radicals and the extremists to try and exploit the situation.

    U.S. interests, U.S. personnel, U.S. embassies and consulates will have to take extra precautions.

    If bin Laden’s death is of symbolic seismic significance, then the fallout in Pakistan will be equally matched.

    There is always a reaction. But keep in mind that the reaction may not come from al Qaeda — it may come from an affiliate, from the groups that have emerged or are emerging from al Qaeda’s shadows: Lashkar-e-Toiba, the Pakistani Taliban, al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula.

    These groups have the infrastructure, the resources, the personnel and the desire to plot and plan mass casualty attacks, and they may be in a better position than bin Laden’s al Qaeda to carry out a reprisal attack.

    Will Osama bin Laden’s death have a wider impact?

    Al Qaeda central is not the group it once was: the drone strikes have been confining their operational space, one by one the leadership has been picked off, they don’t have the ability to train people from the West as they once could.

    Their resources are depleted, they are not able to replenish their ranks, so Al Qaeda central may not be able to cause a significant reaction, but other groups are potentially in a better position to do it.

    There will be problems that will emerge from this — the worry is that we don’t know potentially what they could be, or when.

    The silence is going to be the greatest fear, because it’s not necessarily that these groups would want to carry out attacks regionally or globally imminently. They may wait, they may bide their time. We’re talking about weeks, months.

    Al Qaeda’s affiliates have always had very long term thinking — it’s not about today or tomorrow, it’s about next year.

    They won’t necessarily want to carry out something that will fail and humiliate the group further.

    We also have to bear in mind that bin Laden has been killed, but his deputy, Ayman al-Zawahiri is still at large. He has very much taken on the mantle of issuing al Qaeda’s messages: Audio, video, through the internet; and his protégé, Abu Yahya al-Libi is also out there.
    They will certainly be issuing a message at some point, trying to create a rallying call for vengeance, to inspire their adherents and followers to take up arms.

    Bin Laden may be dead, but his ideology still lives, and the message will continue to indoctrinate young, impressionable minds across the world.

    http://edition.cnn.com/2011/WORLD/asiapcf/05/02/pakistan.bin.laden.sajjan.gohel/?hpt=C2

  • The man, the mujahid, the murderer …

    Nadeem F. Paracha

    Born into a wealthy family in Saudi Arabia, Osama Bin Laden is said to always have been conservative, but not a fanatic. Little is known about his past which was most probably unremarkable with him being one of the many children of a multi-married Saudi construction tycoon. In fact he was the seventeenth child of a man who fathered up to 52 children.

    Interestingly, although Osama’s father became extremely rich thanks to his contacts with Saudi Arabia’s royal family, he remained a strict adherent of his country’s puritanical Sunni Wahabi Muslim faith, whereas Osama’s mother, a Syrian woman, did not prefer wearing the veil and was said to be more educated than her billionaire husband.

    Osama’s first marriage was to a 14-year-old Saudi girl (he was 17 at the time), and in 1974 he enrolled in the economics and management faculty of Jeddah’s King Abdul Aziz University.

    The university, at the time, was bustling with young radical militants most of whom had begun to arrive from Arab countries such as Egypt, Syria, Jordan and Morocco in the late 1960s where their comrades had been persecuted by those countries’ secular Arab nationalist governments.

    Saudi Arabia’s monarchy had been alarmed by the rise of secular nationalist regimes in various Arab countries, most of whom had also tilted towards the Soviet Union during the Cold War.

    That is why the Saudi regime began to openly receive young militants who were opponents of these nationalist governments, many of whom became students and ideologues at the King Abdul Aziz University. These young ideologues were almost entirely unopposed here, quite unlike the situation they had faced at university campuses in Egypt and Syria where student outfits of various Marxist and Arab nationalist parties were also strong.

    Many of these young militants had also escaped to study in Pakistan. Although they found sympathy from Jamat-i-Islami’s student wing, Islami Jamiat Talaba (IJT) in the late 1960s and early 1970s, they were also confronted by a strong presence of various left-wing and liberal student groups who supported Arab nationalist regimes.

    In those days, universities in Karachi and Lahore had large numbers of Palestinian students, many of whom, with the support of Z.A. Bhutto’s government and leftist student groups, set up a student wing of Yasser Arafat’s Palestinian Liberation Organisation (PLO) whom the militants had opposed.

    At King Abdul Aziz University, Osama discovered the political dimension of puritanical Islamic discourse (later labelled as ‘Islamism’), where an exhibition of piety is coupled with political and militant action to help create a ‘true Islamic state and society’ ruled by a revived Islamic caliphate.

    When a group of Saudi Wahabi radicals took over the holy mosque in Mecca in 1979 and were eventually cleared out through a bloody gun battle between Saudi forces (trained and maneuvered by French military experts) and the rather delusional militants (who had with them a man who claimed to be Islam’s awaited avenger, Mehdi), Osama sympathised with the militants.

    Then the same year, Soviet troops began settling in Afghanistan to protect and aid the country’s new revolutionary Marxist regime.

    Propelled by such events and now armed with a new-found understanding of political Islam, Osama decided to join a number of Arab fighters who began arriving in Pakistan to take part in the CIA-ISI-Saudi backed ‘jihad’ against the Soviet-backed ‘infidel’ regime in Kabul.

    But writing in The Guardian, Jason Burke and Lawrence Joffe, are right to suggest that Osama did not play such a huge role in the so-called ‘jihad.’

    They correctly report that Osama’s military contribution was negligible. ‘The “foreign legion” (of which Osama was a part of) never numbered more than a few thousand, of whom most never saw combat but ran charities caring for refugees or wounded Afghan fighters. It was to the seven Afghan mujahideen groups, and only to them, that the
    Pakistanis disbursed American and Saudi aid. Likewise, it was only the Afghans who received training. Bin Laden was not, despite later claims, created by the CIA, who had no contact with such people.’

    Exploits of Arab fighters like Osama in the anti-Soviet insurgency were mostly the creation of al Qaeda propaganda in the 1990s and 2000s. I remember how in 1993, a pamphlet distributed by Pakistan’s Jamat-e-Islami in which it claimed how Soviet tanks simply exploded in front of some Arab fighters whenever they chanted Allah’s name!

    Though Osama did take part in some light episodes of fighting, his central role in the conflict was to raise money for Afghan mujahideen outfits and later, use his financial clout to mediate between warring mujahideen factions after the Soviets exited from Afghanistan.

    Al Qaeda is said have been formed in 1989 by Osama and radical Egyptian surgeon, Ayman al-Zawahiri. After failing to take over Jalalabad after the Soviet withdrawal, Osama and Zawahiri were still convinced that it were Arab fighters who helped the Afghans defeat the Soviets.

    They were not bothered by the fact that, to begin with, it was Soviet Union’s collapsing economy, coupled by billions of dollars worth of aid that came from the US and Saudi Arabia and the determination of Afghan mujahideen that actually did the trick.

    Al Qaeda was set up to incite (through violence) Islamic uprisings in various Muslim countries. It decided to group together various militant cells that had been active against the Soviets, and through militancy, violence and eventual revolution, impose an international Islamic caliphate.

    From 1994 until the tragic 9/11 events, al Qaeda began conducting terrorist attacks against various Arab regimes. In 1996 when the Pakistani government and intelligence agencies helped impose a deadly radical regime in Kabul by a group of Afghan Islamic puritans who had been raised in isolated madrassas in Pakistan, Osama cut a deal with them.

    He bankrolled their regime and in exchange the Taliban allowed him to set up numerous training camps in Afghanistan.

    In 1998, the al Qaeda decided to intensify its operations by forming “The World Islamic Front for Jihad against Jews and Crusaders” that included militant outfits from Bangladesh, Egypt and Pakistan.

    Soon, the al Qaeda were murdering Muslim civilians as well, frustrated by their fellow Muslims’ failure to rise up against their regimes. Then came 9/11, planned and executed by al Qaeda cells. American action against the Taliban regime toppled the fanatical set-up and saw bin Laden and his fighters escape to Pakistan.

    As the Taliban (both in Pakistan and Afghanistan) began their own bloody reign of terror and bloodshed against civilians, and government and security personnel, the al Qaeda became merely a symbol as its cells became largely independent (but deadlier and even more blood thirsty).

    Osama was also said to have fallen sick.

    It is believed that for almost four years the Americans knew about Osama’s presence in Pakistan, but were not sure where he was hiding. Constant denials by Pakistan, busy playing its own little game of kill some, spare some against the Taliban, did not help either.

    Then, a series of extraordinary events took place in the last one month or so. A CIA operative, Raymond Davis, was arrested in Lahore after he shot dead two (armed) Pakistani civilians. It is believed that CIA operatives like Davis are hired to track down those militants that the Pakistani military-establishment is alleged to protect for ‘strategic’ purposes.

    Nevertheless, after Davis’ release, came a surge in anti-American rhetoric on the media (said to be prompted by the ISI to pressurize the CIA).

    To further achieve this, came Imran Khan’s dharna (again, very much prompted) against American drone strikes in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Something was afoot.

    It was obvious some sections of the local intelligence agencies were getting desperate to stop the US from attacking ‘good militants’ (through drones), or those whom Pakistan can use in Afghanistan once the Americans leave that area.

    As respected columnist Ayesha Siddiqa suggested, there are three opposing factions in the ISI/army. One is pro-US, one is pro-China and one is pro-Taliban.

    Osama’s discovery and death in Pakistan at the hands of US marines, possibly aided by the Pakistani intelligence agencies, can be taken as a major demoralising factor for the activities of the so-called pro-Taliban sections of the military.

    A good omen, indeed.

    http://www.dawn.com/2011/05/02/the-man-the-mujahid-the-murderer.html

  • Bin Laden operation raises questions about Pakistan’s role

    By Michelle Shephard

    National Security Reporter

    First came the announcement and celebrations that the nearly 10-year hunt for the world’s most wanted man was over.

    Now come the questions.

    The most pressing is whether officials in Pakistan’s notoriously duplicitous spy service helped shelter Osama bin Laden.

    The optics don’t look great, as Al Qaeda’s leader wasn’t killed Sunday night in the mountainous border region where most believed he was hiding, but in a mansion just a short drive from Pakistan’s capital.

    The densely populated Abbottabad is home to a Pakistani military base, academy and many retired officers. The raid was even unwittingly covered on Twitter.

    Sohaib Athar (@reallyvirtual), a 33-year-old computer programmer and coffee shop owner, joked that he needed his giant fly swatter as U.S. helicopters hovered overhead Sunday.

    But location alone may not indicate complicity as many of Al Qaeda’s top leaders fled across the border and into the cities after 9/11, hiding without help from Pakistan’s establishment.

    Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, Al Qaeda’s number three and the self-professed 9/11 mastermind, was snatched in Karachi in March 2003. Recently released Wikileaks documents portray the chaotic seaside city of 15 million as a favoured Al Qaeda hub.

    In his Sunday announcement about bin Laden’s death, U.S. President Barack Obama made it clear that the raid was not a joint operation with Pakistan, noting that he called Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari once the operation was over.

    Pakistan’s foreign ministry issued a statement concerning bin Laden’s death Monday, saying the mission was consistent with the “U.S. policy that Osama bin Laden will be eliminated in a direct action by U.S. forces, wherever found in the world.”

    “We have had extremely effective intelligence sharing arrangements with several intelligence agencies including the U.S.,” the statement said.

    But relations between Pakistan and the U.S. are reportedly at their worst in years, fueled by the controversy over the CIA-directed drone attacks in Pakistan’s border region and persistent accusations that elements within Pakistan’s Inter-Service Intelligence (ISI) continue to play a double-game with the U.S. – accepting billions in funding while continuing support for the Taliban and local groups such as Lashkar-e-Tabiya (LeT).

    Whether bin Laden had friends within the ISI officials or not, Pakistan is now on high alert for a retaliatory attack.

    http://www.thestar.com/news/world/article/984073–bin-laden-operation-raises-questions-about-pakistan-s-role?bn=1

  • NOTES ON THE DEATH OF OSAMA BIN LADEN

    Posted by Steve Coll

    No doubt there will be time to reflect more deeply about the news announced by President Obama last night. For now, I thought it might be useful to annotate some of the initial headlines.

    On where he was found:

    Abbottabad is essentially a military cantonment city in Pakistan, in the hills to the north of the capital of Islamabad, in an area where much of the land is controlled or owned by the Pakistan Army and retired army officers. Although the city is technically in what used to be called the Northwest Frontier Province, it lies to the far eastern side of the province and is as close to Pakistani-held Kashmir as it is to the border city of Peshawar. The city is most notable for housing the Pakistan Military Academy, the Pakistan Army’s premier training college, equivalent to West Point. Looking at maps and satellite photos on the Web last night, I saw the wide expanse of the Academy not far from where the million-dollar, heavily secured mansion where bin Laden lived was constructed in 2005. The maps I looked at had sections of land nearby marked off as “restricted area,” indicating that it was under military control. It stretches credulity to think that a mansion of that scale could have been built and occupied by bin Laden for six years without it coming to the attention of anyone in Pakistan’s Army.

    The initial circumstantial evidence suggests the opposite is more likely—that bin Laden was effectively being housed under Pakistani state control. Pakistan will deny this, it seems safe to predict, and perhaps no convincing evidence will ever surface to prove the case. If I were a prosecutor at the United States Department of Justice, however, I would be tempted to call a grand jury. Who owned the land on which the house was constructed? How was the land acquired, and from whom? Who designed the house, which seems to have been purpose-built to secure bin Laden? Who was the general contractor? Who installed the security systems? Who worked there? Are there witnesses who will now testify as to who visited the house, how often, and for what purpose? These questions are not relevant only to the full realization of justice for the victims of September 11th. They are also relevant to the victims of terrorist attacks conducted or inspired by bin Laden while he lived in the house, and these include many Pakistanis as well as Afghans, Indians, Jordanians, and Britons. They are rightly subjects of American criminal law.

    Outside of the Justice Department, other sections of the United States government will probably underplay any evidence about culpability by the Pakistani state or sections of the state, such as its intelligence service, I.S.I., in sheltering bin Laden. As ever, there are many other fish to fry in Islamabad and at the Army headquarters in nearby Rawalpindi: An exit strategy from Afghanistan, which requires the greatest possible degree of coöperation from Pakistan that can be attained at a reasonable price; nuclear stability, and so on.

    Pakistan’s military and intelligence service takes risks that others would not dare take because Pakistan’s generals believe their nuclear deterrent keeps them safe from regime change of the sort underway in Libya, and because they have discovered over the years that the rest of the world sees them as too big to fail. Unfortunately, they probably are correct in their analysis; some countries, like some investment banks, do pose systemic risks so great that they are too big to fail, and Pakistan is currently the A.I.G. of nation-states. But that should not stop American prosecutors from following the law here as they would whenever any mass killer’s hideout is discovered.

    Of course, Mullah Omar and Al Qaeda’s number two, Ayman Al-Zawahiri probably also enjoy refuge in Pakistan. The location of Mullah Omar, in particular, is believed by American officials to be well known to some Pakistani military and intelligence officers; Omar too, they believe, is effectively under Pakistani state control. Perhaps the circumstantial evidence in the bin Laden case is misleading; only a transparent, thorough investigation by Pakistani authorities into how such a fugitive could have lived so long under the military’s nose without detection would establish otherwise. That sort of transparent investigation is unlikely to take place.

    On who was living with Bin Laden:

    The early reports suggest that he was living with his “youngest wife.” Bin Laden, who would have been fifty-three years old when he died yesterday, had always lived surrounded by family and children, so it was not surprising that he had managed to do so even as a fugitive. He is known to have married at least four times. His first wife was a cousin from Syria. His second and third wives were highly educated Saudi women. His fourth wife was a kind of mail-order teen bride from Yemen whom he married while living in Afghanistan during the nineteen-nineties, according to the account of bin Laden’s former Yemeni bodyguard. Bin Laden’s Syrian and Saudi wives were said to have gone home before or immediately after the September 11th attacks, and the Saudi wives were said to be living in the kingdom, without contact with Osama. When I visited Yemen in 2007, to conduct research on the bin Laden family, Yemeni journalists told me that his youngest wife had returned home and was living in the region either of Tai’zz or Ibb, significant cities to the south of Sanaa, the capital. It seems that she may have found her way to Pakistan to live with her husband. My own guess had been that bin Laden would have accepted informal divorce from his older wives on grounds of involuntary separation, and would have remarried a local woman or two while in hiding in Pakistan, perhaps a daughter presented by one of his Pathan hosts. That is at least conceivable as well. Apparently, one of his adult sons was killed in the raid. Osama has more than a dozen sons. Some have returned to Saudi Arabia but others have appeared in videos with their father, vowing to fight alongside him. It is conceivable that one of his sons could make a claim on Al Qaeda leadership in the years ahead.

    On what bin Laden’s death means for Al Qaeda:

    On the constructive side: The loss of a symbolic, semi-charismatic leader whose own survival burnished his legend is significant. Also, Al Qaeda has never had a leadership succession test. Now it faces one. The organization was founded more than twenty years ago, in the summer of 1988, and at the initial sessions bin Laden was appointed amir and Ayman al-Zawahiri deputy amir. It is remarkable that, for all the number threes killed and all the ways in which it has been degraded since September 11th, Al Qaeda had retained the same two leaders continuously for so long. Zawahiri is famously disputatious and tone-deaf. His relatively recent online “chat” taking questions about Al Qaeda’s violence did not go well. Bin Laden was a gentle and strong communicator, if somewhat incoherent in his thinking. Zawahiri is dogmatic, argumentative, and has a history of alienating colleagues.

    On the other hand: Al Qaeda is more than just a centralized organization based in Pakistan. It is also a network of franchised or like-minded organizations, and an ideological movement in which followers sometimes act in isolation from leaders. The best guesstimates are that Al Qaeda has several hundred serious members or adherents in Pakistan, along the Pakistan side of the Pakistan-Afghan border, and perhaps up to a hundred scattered around Afghanistan. Just last week, the German government disrupted a cell near Dusseldorf in which one of the members, of Moroccan origin, had allegedly traveled to the Afghanistan-Pakistan border, where he received explosives training from an Al Qaeda contact. Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, based in Yemen, appears to be just just as potent. Dan Benjamin, the State Department counterterrorism coördinator, gave a speech last week at New America that provided a very good, up-to-date summary of Al Qaeda and its affiliates worldwide, their capabilities and connections to one another.

    On the hunt itself:

    After President Obama took office, he and the new Central Intelligence Agency director, Leon Panetta, reorganized the team of analysts devoted to finding Osama bin Laden. The team worked out of ground-floor offices at the Langley headquarters. There were at least two-dozen of them. Some were older analysts who had been part of the C.I.A.’s various bin Laden-hunting efforts going back to the late nineteen-nineties. Others were newer recruits, too young to have been professionally active when bin Laden was first indicted as a fugitive from American justice.

    As they reset their work, the analysts studied other long international fugitive hunts that had ended successfully, such as the operations that led to the death of Medellín Cartel leader Pablo Escobar, in 1993. The analysts asked, Where did the breakthroughs in these other hunts come from? What were the clues that made the difference and how were the clues discovered? They tried to identify “signatures” of Osama bin Laden’s lifestyle that might lead to such a clue: prescription medications that he might purchase, hobbies or other habits of shopping or movement that might give him away.

    The Langley analysts were one headquarters egghead element of the hunt. Similar analytical units at Central Command in Tampa and at the International Security Assistance Force in Kabul sorted battlefield and all-source intelligence, designated subjects for additional collection, and conducted pattern analysis of relationships among terrorists, couriers, and raw data collected in the field. Detainee operators in Iraq, Afghanistan, at Guantanámo and at secret C.I.A. sites also participated. Apparently, the breakthrough started several years back from detainee interrogations; it’s not clear yet how or by what means the information about the courier who led to the Abbottabad compound was extracted.

    Overseas, C.I.A. officers from the Directorate of Operations and the Special Activities Division—intelligence officers who ran sources and collected information, as well as armed paramilitaries—carried out the search for informants from bases in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Units from the military’s Joint Special Operations Command, which includes the Navy Seals, Delta, and other specialized groups, joined in. Often, Special Operations and the C.I.A. worked in blended task force teams deployed around Afghanistan, and, more problematically, as the Raymond Davis case indicated, around Pakistan.

    These teams searched not only for bin Laden, but also for other “High Value Targets,” as they are legally and bureaucratically known inside the U.S. government. My understanding is that as of this spring, there are approximately forty legally designated, fugitive High Value Targets at the top of the wanted list system. If there were forty, I suppose there are now thirty-nine.

    Read more http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/newsdesk/2011/05/notes-on-the-death-of-osama-bin-laden.html#ixzz1LDKoQ2zV

  • U.S. Sen. Carl Levin said today that Pakistan’s military and intelligence communities have a lot of explaining to do regarding how long Osama bin Laden was hiding out in a compound about 1,000 yards from a military base.

    “There isn’t any question that Pakistani officials, army and intelligence have a lot of questions to answer, given the location of the compound, the length of time he was there and and that this facility was apparently built for bin Laden,” Levin, D-Mich., said at a news conference in Washington this morning.

    Levin, the chairman of the Armed Services Committee, was reassured that Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari released a congratulatory statement to the United States regarding the killing of bin Laden. “I hope that he will follow through and ask some very tough questions of his own military and intelligence,” Levin said.

    Levin said he found out about the death at about 10 p.m. Sunday as we waited for a flight to Washington at Metro Airport.

    “My first reaction was great satisfaction and relief that a true mass murderer has been brought to justice,” he said. “And I was just stunned by the capability of our special forces and the amazing performance of our men and women in uniform that they were able to pull this off.”

    He said the mythology of bin Laden, as a character who was hiding out in caves along the border of Afghanistan and Pakistan, had been punctured.

    “He was living in comfort for many years in a big place that he had arranged for himself many, many years ago,” Levin said. “This is a victory, but it’s not the final victory over terrorists.”

    http://ht.ly/1crQOF

  • Dr Shahid Masood (i.e. ISI’s) reaction as expected:

    Although the killing of Osama Bin Laden in an American operation deep inside Pakistan has provided the United States with an excellent political victory, it will have no great effect on Al-Qaeda’s operational capability, popular Pakistani broadcast journalist Dr. Shahid Masood said Monday.

    “Bin Laden was their target No. 1. It was the hunt for Bin Laden that brought the Americans to Kabul and Kandahar. Now that they have got him, US President Barack Obama has a perfect reason to make an exit from Afghanistan,” he told Arab News in an interview by phone from Pakistan. “It is Pakistan that now faces the real dilemma.”

    According to him, Bin Laden’s death will not impact adversely on Al-Qaeda. “Bin Laden was inactive for a fairly long time, and the terror group’s command was in reality in the hands of his No. 2 Ayman Al-Zawahiri,” he said.

    Masood said Bin Laden’s killing would result in a huge backlash worldwide. “The lower rung or the second tier or the third tier of whatever is left of Al-Qaeda will be more agitated than ever,” he said. “My sources in Pakistan tell me that there will be a violent reaction from organizations that may not necessarily be linked with Al-Qaeda but which do share the terror group’s ideology. It is a fact that there are many smaller groups that take their inspiration from Al-Qaeda, and there is every possibility of more Al-Qaeda-like groups emerging on the scene. These are the groups that may react violently to avenge Bin Laden’s death,” he said.

    He said it was still too early to speculate on what kind of cooperation if any took place between the Americans and Pakistanis.

    “In his speech from the White House, US President Barack Obama made it clear that it was not a drone attack. He said it was a purely American operation in which American troops actually landed and conducted an operation on the Pakistani soil. This will raise lot many questions about the violation of Pakistan’s sovereignty,” said Masood. “Bin Laden’s discovery in Pakistan is not good news for us.”

    He repeatedly pointed out that the place where the killing took place is far away from the border with Afghanistan. “We are talking about Abbottabad — a beautiful, green hill city nestled among the mountains. It is located in Pakistan’s Northwest Frontier Province which has now been renamed as Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province. Our military has one of its most prestigious and finest military institutions called The Kakul Military Academy in this area. In fact, Kakul is a mere half-an-hour away from where the Bin Laden compounded was situated. This is not a tribal area. It is an urban center, and most of the prestigious schools meant for children of Pakistan’s elite are located in Abbottabad. For Osama Bin Laden to be found in this area will be hugely embarrassing for Pakistan,” he said. “Remember Pakistani Army chief Gen. Pervez Kayani delivered a lecture at this very academy two days ago.”

    Masood said there was no real disagreement between the Pakistani military and US military on the issue of Bin Laden. “Both were on the same page vis-à-vis Bin Laden; both saw him as an irritant; the real conflict between the two was on the role of Taleban,” he said. “I see no great fissures in ties between the two sides.”

    On the strain between Pakistan and India, he said Bin Laden and Al-Qaeda were never a factor. “India has complained about organizations such as the Lashkar-e-Taiba and Jaish-e-Muhammad which were in existence long before Al-Qaeda emerged. Therefore, despite all the bluster from New Delhi, my understanding is that there will be no adverse impact on Pakistan-India ties.”

    However, Masood said, there will be a series of embarrassments for Pakistan when answers emerge to key questions such as: What role did Pakistani security agencies play in the operation? Who provided the intelligence — and to whom? If Pakistan had the intelligence why did it not carry out the operation itself? Why did it allow the Americans to conduct the operation? Or was Pakistan informed after the American troops had already landed in Abbottabad?

    “It is pertinent to note that Obama praised Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari but not the Pakistani security forces or the Pakistani military,” he pointed out. “Since we have not heard from the military and our intelligence agency, the ISI, we will have to wait for answers to all the key questions, and that will determine the people’s reaction,” he said.

    In past, Masood pointed out, it was always mentioned that Pakistani forces were involved in all anti-Al-Qaeda operations. “During the days of Pervez Musharraf when high-profile Al-Qaeda members were arrested such as Khalid Sheikh Muhammad and Abu Zubeida, it used to be mentioned that actionable intelligence was provided by the Americans and that the actual operations were conducted by the Pakistanis themselves. Here we have American troops conducting the operation all by themselves and actually taking away the body of Bin Laden. This will have far-reaching implications, if not consequences,” he said.

    The well-known journalist, who rode a crest of popularity in the post-9/11 Muslim world, said Bin Laden’s death will not change anything on the ground in Afghanistan. “The fight in that country is being led by young Afghans. Al-Qaeda may have been involved in a couple of attacks, but the actual fight there is being led by the Taleban. Their leadership is intact. Mullah Omar is alive, and so is key fighter Sirajuddin Haqqani. For the young Taleban, Osama was like an elder figure, a charismatic figure. In his death, they will fight with greater vigor and with greater vengeance.”

    Masood admitted that Pakistan will be under immense pressure. “The Americans will now insist that Mullah Omar is also in Pakistan, Al-Zawahiri is also in Pakistan. These pressures are to be expected. However much we say we don’t have them that will not be listened to. Pakistan’s military and civilian craftsmanship will be tested to the fullest in the coming days.”

    Another important factor in the kind of reaction that might follow will depend on how the Americans treat Bin Laden’s body. “So far they have said they are according it the respect that a dead man deserves,” said Masood. “They have also promised to bury him in accordance with his faith. However, a lot will depend on what kind of videos of this operation emerge. We have seen how the Americans dealt with Saddam Hussein after he was caught and how Saddam Hussein was mistreated while being hanged. Those videos came in very handy as recruitment tools for militant groups in the Arab and Muslim world.”

    By SIRAJ WAHAB | ARAB NEWS
    Published: May 2, 2011 15:10 Updated: May 2, 2011 17:12

    http://arabnews.com/saudiarabia/article380038.ece

    Al-Qaeda leader’s death doesn’t change Afghanistan: Masood

  • @NickKristof

    President Zardari, how about a commission (w/ civilians) to investigate how Osama ended up in his compound & who rented it?

  • Compound in Pakistan was once a safe house
    House was not owned by the government and had been rented by Afghan nationals, intelligence official says
    By Ashfaq Ahmed, Chief ReporterPublished: 00:00 May 3, 2011
    3Share

    Image Credit: AP

    Soldiers of Pakistan Army seen near the house in Abbottabad on Tuesday where Osama Bin Laden was believed to have been residing. The physical security measures of the compound are extraordinary. It has 12-to-18-foot outer walls, topped with barbed wire fencing.

    The compound in Abbottabad where Osama Bin Laden was killed was once used as a safe house by Pakistan’s premier intelligence agency ISI, Gulf News has learnt.
    “This area had been used as ISI’s safe house, but it was not under their use any more because they keep on changing their locations,” a senior intelligence official confided to Gulf News. However, he did not reveal when and for how long it was used by the ISI operatives. Another official cautiously said “it may not be the same house but the same compound or area used by the ISI”.
    The official also confirmed that the house was rented out by Afghan nationals and is not owned by the government. The house is located just 800 metres away from the Pakistan Military Academy and some former senior military officials live nearby.
    Abbottabad is a garrison town located just 50 kilometres north of Islamabad and it is a popular summer resort, originally built by the British during colonial rule. The city houses a number of upscale educational institutions and religious schools as well.
    Secluded affluence
    According to the briefing by senior US officials on the killing of Bin Laden, the area is relatively affluent, with lots of retired military staff. It is also insulated from the natural disasters and terrorist attacks that have afflicted other parts of Pakistan — an extraordinarily unique compound. The compound sits on a large plot of land in an area that was relatively secluded when it was built. It is roughly eight times larger than nearby homes.
    The physical security measures of the compound are extraordinary.
    It has 12-to-18-foot outer walls, topped with barbed wires. Internal walls sectioned off different portions of the compound to provide extra privacy.
    Access to the compound is restricted by two security gates and the residents of the compound burnt their trash, unlike their neighbours, who put the trash out for collection.
    The property is valued at approximately $1 million (Dh3.67 million), but has no telephone or Internet connection.

    http://gulfnews.com/news/world/other-world/compound-in-pakistan-was-once-a-safe-house-1.802539

  • Who is Mahwish Afridi? Give her, her own website, blog, column, post, etc. because this is the best analysis of the conjoining of International Salafi/Wahabi terrorism, and domestic Pakistani psycho-sectarianism.

    Both feed on each other and both kill Pakistanis.

  • سا لا ایک وہابی ،پوری فوج کو ہیجڑا بنا دیتا ہے

  • AABPARA production is all naked in front of every one.
    The mother of all evils is dead! Cheers all peace loving people

  • Truth will out – Kamran Shafi

    SO then, Osama bin Laden has been killed by American Navy Seals in Abbottabad Cantonment, Pakistan, in an operation directed and run by the Americans themselves in a helicopter-borne assault from Afghanistan.
    Whilst we will ask where the ghairat of the ‘Ghairat Brigades’ was, when four foreign helicopters crossed our border and after flying for an hour over our ‘sovereign’ territory, swooped onto Abbottabad; whilst we will definitely ask where our ‘self-respect’ is; now that the Americans have done what they said they would do if they had the intelligence — go after who they consider their enemies no matter where they are holed up — it is more important to ask why our much-vaunted Deep State didn’t know Osama bin Laden was living in Abbottabad Cantonment all these years?
    And to ask why everyone and Charlie’s aunt in the security establishment went blue and red with anger when told that Osama and his close advisers were hiding in Pakistan?
    Why, yours truly has been called a traitor deserving of death when I suggested that only given what the establishment itself told us about Osama’s failing kidneys and need for regular dialysis there was no way he was living in a cave on some remote mountain. Why indeed, did the Commando puff out his chest and glare at Hamid Karzai when the Afghan president suggested that Al Qaeda’s top leadership was hiding in Pakistan? Why the stout denial all these years?
    From news that is filtering out, CNN with the help of Google maps, already told us early on Monday morning London time, that Osama was living with his youngest wife and some other members of his family and tens of armed guards in a house eight times bigger than all the other houses in the area: walls 12 feet high; no telephone connection; no cellphone signals emitting from the house, et al.
    I mention this because the quite preposterous house should have stuck out like a sore thumb and been the subject of some suspicion on the part of the Mother of All Agencies which routinely bugs people’s telephones and has the equipment to pinpoint a cellphone to within 10 metres.
    However, we are being told to believe that no one in Pakistan, not the Hazara police, not the IB, not the ISI, not MI, had the slightest idea just who lived in that absurd house located not far from the Pakistan Military Academy where officer cadets, the future leaders of the Pakistan Army, are trained. (Incidentally, where, not a week ago, the COAS asserted that the army had broken the back of the terrorists!) Indeed, one should have thought that a cantonment with not only this academy but three regimental centres which train recruits and turn them into soldiers should have been a most sensitive station. I can only say if they didn’t know, why didn’t they know? The truth will out one day.
    The American government denies, as some claimed, that our security state was aware of this operation and that our intelligence agents were part of it, and the Pakistan government has confirmed the US stance. Indeed, President Obama’s statement made in Washington DC clearly said that he was briefed in August, almost nine months ago, that Osama’s trail was getting hotter and that it was on last Friday night that he was told Osama had been positively tracked down to a location in Abbottabad in Pakistan, at which point the US president ordered the operation.
    According to Mr Obama, he telephoned President Zardari with the news of the operation after he had been informed of its success.
    At the time when 9/11 happened and my own son disappeared on me for four agonising hours during the aftermath of the tragedy (he was working in World Trade Centre Building 4 at the time), I had condemned the Al Qaeda leader for only using Afghanistan to further his own agenda of taking over Saudi Arabia (and then the ummah) and not having done anything for the poor of that desperately poor nation.
    There was no Bin Laden hospital or school or clinic or dispensary or road or welfare project built in Afghanistan with his hundreds of millions. Indeed, it was only the bribes he paid the Taliban that ensured their protection for him.
    But back to the operation and my hope that what we are being told is not another lie. The end-game is here, sirs, and will now quicken with Osama bin Laden’s elimination. Calls for a withdrawal from Afghanistan before 2014 will increase in tenor and frequency.
    However, the Americans will simply not leave Afghanistan to the wolves: for fear of strengthening the cousins, the Afghan and the Pakistani Taliban. But they will ask for more cooperation from us because they will simply not take more casualties, inflicted on their troops from terrorists from our side of the border travelling by way of Parachinar and other routes.
    We should be aware that Osama being run to ground in Abbottabad will heighten American suspicions of us, regardless of what we might say. We should also take very serious note of what American leaders are saying about us. While some people might be right in characterising congressman Dana Rohrabacher’s saying we have been playing the Americans for suckers as the view of just one conservative, we must recall Secretary Clinton saying: “I’m not saying that they’re at the highest levels, but I believe that somewhere in this government are people who know where Osama bin Laden and Al Qaeda is, where Mullah Omar and the leadership of the Afghan Taliban is, and we expect more cooperation to help us bring to justice, capture or kill those who attacked us on 9/11.”
    Truth will out, only this time it will bring great peril to us if we don’t shape up.

    http://www.dawn.com/2011/05/03/truth-will-out.html

  • Hamid Mir writes:

    For me, it was a great surprise that the world’s most wanted person was hiding in a Pakistani city, Abbotabad, home to Pakistan Military Academy (PMA). This is the same area where Pakistani intelligence agency ISI conducted a search operation to arrest Aby Faraj al Libbi in 2004 but the son-in-law of Osama escaped to Mardan where he was captured by ISI after few weeks.
    It was learnt that the Americans conducted the operation without informing their Pakistani counterparts. Two American Chinook helicopters entered the Pakistani airspace from eastern Afghanistan. The government sources say: “We were unaware because the Americans jammed our radar system.” On the other hand, highly-placed responsible sources in the government confirmed that Pakistan shared very important information regarding Osama bin Laden in May 2010 with CIA. Pakistan security forces intercepted a phone call made by an Arab from the area between Taxila and Abbotabad. The CIA was informed in August 2010 about the possible presence of an important Al Qaeda leader in the area between Taxila and Abbotabad. Probably, this phone call was made by Osama bin Laden and that was a blunder.

    nobody thought that Osama would be captured in Abbottabad. He was hiding in Abbottabad with one of his wives, a son and a daughter. When Americans attacked his hideout, he immediately started fighting. His wife got bullet injury in her foot. According to his injured wife, Osama rushed to the rooftop and joined his guards who were resisting the attack. His 10-year-old daughter Safia watched American commandos entering the house, who took away the dead body of her father. She confirmed later: “The Americans dragged the dead body of my father through the stairs”.
    Osama bin Laden is dead but al-Qaeda and its allies are not. Osama always exploited the flaws in American policies. His real strength was hatred against America; Islam was never his real strength. Physical elimination of Osama bin Laden is big news for the Americans but many outside America want elimination of the policies that produce bin Ladens. America came into Afghanistan in search of Osama bin Laden. No doubt that he was responsible for the killing of many innocent people but Americans cannot justify the killing of innocent people through drone attacks just because Osama killed some innocent Americans. Both Osama bin Laden and Americans violated the sovereignty of Pakistan. It must be stopped now. Osama is dead. If America does not leave Afghanistan after the death of Osama bin Laden, then this war will not end soon and the world will remain an unsafe place.
    (Hamid Mir works for Geo TV. He interviewed Osama bin Laden three times. He was the last journalist to interview OBL after 9/11. He is also writing the biography of OBL)

    http://old.thenews.com.pk/03-05-2011/ethenews/t-5713.htm

  • WikiLeaks: Osama bin Laden ‘protected’ by Pakistani security
    Pakistani security forces allegedly helped Osama bin Laden evade American troops for almost 10 years, according to secret US government files.

    Image 1 of 2
    Pakistani army soldiers secure the compound where Osama bin Laden was killed in Abbottabad, north west Pakistan Photo: EPA/IFTIKHAR TANOLI
    By Tim Ross 5:31PM BST 02 May 2011
    Follow Tim Ross on Twitter
    American diplomats were told that one of the key reasons why they had failed to find bin Laden was that Pakistan’s security services tipped him off whenever US troops approached.
    Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence Directorate (ISID) also allegedly smuggled al-Qaeda terrorists through airport security to help them avoid capture and sent a unit into Afghanistan to fight alongside the Taliban.
    The claims, made in leaked US government files obtained by Wikileaks, will add to questions over Pakistan’s capacity to fight al-Qaeda.
    Last year, David Cameron caused a diplomatic furore when he told Pakistan that it could not “look both ways” on terrorism. The Pakistani government issued a strongly-worded rebuttal.
    But bin Laden was eventually tracked down and killed in compound located just a few hundred yards from Pakistan’s prestigious military academy in Abbotabad.
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    The raid by elite US troops was kept secret from the government of Pakistan. Only a tight circle within the Obama Administration knew of the operation.
    In December 2009, the government of Tajikistan warned the United States that efforts to catch bin Laden were being thwarted by corrupt Pakistani spies.
    According to a US diplomatic dispatch, General Abdullo Sadulloevich Nazarov, a senior Tajik counterterrorism official, told the Americans that “many” inside Pakistan knew where bin Laden was.
    The document stated: “In Pakistan, Osama Bin Laden wasn’t an invisible man, and many knew his whereabouts in North Waziristan, but whenever security forces attempted a raid on his hideouts, the enemy received warning of their approach from sources in the security forces.”
    Intelligence gathered from detainees at Guantanamo Bay may also have made the Americans wary of sharing their operational plans with the Pakistani government.
    One detainee, Saber Lal Melma, an Afghan whom the US described as a probable facilitator for al-Qaeda, allegedly worked with the ISID to help members flee Afghanistan after the American bombing began in October 2001.
    His US military Guantanamo Bay detainee file, obtained by Wikileaks and seen by The Daily Telegraph, claims he allegedly passed the al-Qaeda Arabs to Pakistani security forces who then smuggled them across the border into Pakistan.
    He was also overheard “bragging about a time when the ISID sent a military unit into Afghanistan, posing as civilians to fight along side the Taliban against US forces”.
    He also allegedly detailed “ISID’s protection of Al-Qaida members at Pakistan airports. The ISID members diverted Al-Qaida members through unofficial channels to avoid detection from officials in search of terrorists,” the file claims.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/pakistan/8488236/WikiLeaks-Osama-bin-Laden-protected-by-Pakistani-security.html

  • ISI attempts to control damage : )

    Pak military caught in the crossfire By Baqir Sajjad Syed | From the Newspaper (7 hours ago) Today
    A drawing, released by the United State Department of Defense May 2, 2011, shows the compound that Osama bin Laden was killed in on Monday in Abbottabad, Pakistan. Bin Laden was killed during a US assault on his Pakistani compound on Monday, then quickly buried at sea, in a dramatic end to the long manhunt for the al Qaeda leader who had become the most powerful symbol of global terrorism. – Photo by Reuters

    ISLAMABAD: As the United States announced the death of Osama bin Laden, the Pakistani state, especially its military struggled to explain the role it played in the momentous event and contain the domestic political fallout on Monday.

    In a damage control exercise, the Pakistan military tried to find refuge in ‘intelligence failure’ as the elusive Al Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden was killed in a CIA-led helicopter borne raid on a house right under the nose of Pakistan military’s training academy.

    “We had been looking for him in no-go areas, unaware that he was living so close to an installation of ours. Yes, it is an intelligence failure,” a senior military official told Dawn in a background session on OBL’s death in an operation carried out by a US Navy SEAL strike team under CIA command.

    Even as military officials tried to downplay Osama’s killing in a compound less than a kilometre away from Kakul academy, they found very few takers of their explanation.

    This was hardly surprising as it is hard to believe that the paranoid security agencies never conducted a reconnaissance of the vicinity of their main training facility during times when military installations faced a continuous threat of terrorist attacks. Odder still is the fact that the military authorities or the intelligence sleuths never felt the need to find out who was using a heavily guarded structure that was protected by barded wires and fortified walls and had the extra precaution of surveillance cameras.

    It is in fact tragically comical that this compound was at a stone’s throw from where Chief of Army Staff General Ashfaq Pervaiz Kayani attended a parade around a week ago; when he said publicly that his soldiers had broken the back of militants.

    Was the general completely unaware that the most wanted man lived but a short distance away? Did he also not have a clue about what was to happen in the coming days in that town?

    Military officials vehemently insist that they had not been taken on board by the Americans about the operation.

    In hindsight, the flurry of activity that took place in the past week or so indicates that something was up.

    ISAF Commander Gen Petraeus paid an extraordinary visit to Islamabad last Monday (April 25), when he is said to have held ‘a short and crisp’ discussion with Gen Kayani at an unusual meeting venue — Chaklala Airbase. The two generals are even said to have taken a short trip to an undisclosed location on board an aircraft. The same night Gen Petraeus had through teleconferencing attended a White House meeting chaired by President Barack Obama.

    Observers feel that President Obama referred to that meeting in his speech on Monday morning, in which he announced the death of Osama: “And finally, last week, I determined that we had enough intelligence to take action, and authorised an operation to get Osama Bin Laden and bring him to justice.”

    The very next day, Pakistan’s top military coordination body — Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee — held its quarterly session, which was attended among others by ISI Chief Gen Shuja Pasha, who otherwise isn’t a regular member of the body. The meeting was unscheduled.

    The final orders for the raid were signed by President Obama last Friday in the presence of National Security Advisor Tom Donilon, his deputy Denis McDonough and counter-terrorism adviser John Brennan.

    However, it is not just the denial of the Pakistan army of any prior knowledge of the operation that is raising eyebrows.

    Another anomaly in the Pakistan military’s account of the raid is their explanation of how four US helicopters evaded the country’s air defence system for about an hour (almost 30 minutes each side) as they flew in from Bagram and returned after a 40-minute long foray.

    One official claimed that the helicopters succeeded in avoiding detection through ‘Nap of the earth flight’ — a military tactic involving low-altitude flying to evade air defence systems. Yet another maintained that the air defence systems had been jammed by the Americans.

    If this sequence of events is to be believed then why did President Obama appreciate Pakistan’s cooperation in the operation? Was it out of love for the country?

    “But it’s important to note that our counter-terrorism cooperation with Pakistan helped lead us to Bin Laden and the compound where he was hiding,” Mr Obama said.

    Whatever the case, Pakistani commanders took heart from President Obama’s and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s statements on the incident.

    They think that the statements had provided Pakistan with a way out of the awkward situation and given the space for both sides to continue with their war on militancy cooperation.

    It was in line with this assessment of the situation and the subsequent American stance that the Foreign Office statement on Osama’s killing was drafted. The carefully worded statement renewed its pledge to continue cooperation with the US in fight against militancy.

    “Pakistan has played a significant role in efforts to eliminate terrorism. We have had extremely effective intelligence sharing arrangements with several intelligence agencies, including that of the US. We will continue to support international efforts against terrorism.”

    The statement had hailed the operation as “a major setback to terrorist organisations around the world”.

    Evident from the statement were the worries in the foreign ministry and among the civilian leadership and among military command about the questions that would be asked, especially about the violation of country’s sovereignty during the conduct of the operation. Hence, it took recourse to America’s right of defence and international law.

    At one point, the statement noted that “the operation was conducted by the US forces in accordance with the declared US policy that Osama bin Laden will be eliminated in a direct action by the US forces, wherever found in the world.” Whereas at another point, it said “Al Qaeda had declared war on Pakistan.”

    The statement emphasised that the operation had been carried out by the US forces, and not Pakistani troops.

    This is also the line pushed by the civilian government whose Information Minister Firdous Ashiq Awan said the operation was carried out by the US in exercise of UNSC mandate.

    http://www.dawn.com/2011/05/03/pak-military-caught-in-the-crossfire.html

  • Robert Fisk: Was he betrayed? Of course. Pakistan knew Bin Laden’s hiding place all along

    Robert Fisk: Pakistan knew Bin Laden’s hiding place all along

    May 3, 2011

    Obama, Biden, Clinton in the Control Room

    From Robert Fisk , Independent

    A middle-aged nonentity, a political failure outstripped by history – by the millions of Arabs demanding freedom and democracy in the Middle East – died in Pakistan yesterday. And then the world went mad.

    Fresh from providing us with a copy of his birth certificate, the American President turned up in the middle of the night to provide us with a live-time death certificate for Osama bin Laden, killed in a town named after a major in the army of the old British Empire. A single shot to the head, we were told. But the body’s secret flight to Afghanistan, an equally secret burial at sea? The weird and creepy disposal of the body – no shrines, please – was almost as creepy as the man and his vicious organisation.

    The Americans were drunk with joy. David Cameron thought it “a massive step forward”. India described it as a “victorious milestone”. “A resounding triumph,” Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu boasted. But after 3,000 American dead on 9/11, countless more in the Middle East, up to half a million Muslims dead in Iraq and Afghanistan and 10 years trying to find Bin Laden, pray let us have no more “resounding triumphs”. Revenge attacks? Perhaps they will come, by the little groupuscules in the West, who have no direct contact with al-Qa’ida. Be sure, someone is already dreaming up a “Brigade of the Martyr Osama bin Laden”. Maybe in Afghanistan, among the Taliban.

    But the mass revolutions in the Arab world over the past four months mean that al-Qa’ida was already politically dead. Bin Laden told the world – indeed, he told me personally – that he wanted to destroy the pro-Western regimes in the Arab world, the dictatorships of the Mubaraks and the Ben Alis. He wanted to create a new Islamic Caliphate. But these past few months, millions of Arab Muslims rose up and were prepared for their own martyrdom – not for Islam but for freedom and liberty and democracy. Bin Laden didn’t get rid of the tyrants. The people did. And they didn’t want a caliph.

    I met the man three times and have only one question left unasked: what did he think as he watched those revolutions unfold this year – under the flags of nations rather than Islam, Christians and Muslims together, the kind of people his own al-Qa’ida men were happy to butcher?

    In his own eyes, his achievement was the creation of al-Qa’ida, the institution which had no card-carrying membership. You just woke up in the morning, wanted to be in al-Qa’ida – and you were. He was the founder. But he was never a hands-on warrior. There was no computer in his cave, no phone calls to set bombs off. While the Arab dictators ruled uncontested with our support, they largely avoided condemning American policy; only Bin Laden said these things. Arabs never wanted to fly planes into tall buildings, but they did admire a man who said what they wanted to say. But now, increasingly, they can say these things. They don’t need Bin Laden. He had become a nonentity.

    But talking of caves, Bin Laden’s demise does bring Pakistan into grim focus. For months, President Ali Zardari has been telling us that Bin Laden was living in a cave in Afghanistan. Now it turns out he was living in a mansion in Pakistan. Betrayed? Of course he was. By the Pakistan military or the Pakistan Inter-Services Intelligence? Quite possibly both. Pakistan knew where he was.

    Not only was Abbottabad the home of the country’s military college – the town was founded by Major James Abbott of the British Army in 1853 – but it is headquarters of Pakistan’s Northern Army Corps’ 2nd Division. Scarcely a year ago, I sought an interview with another “most wanted man” – the leader of the group believed responsible for the Mumbai massacres. I found him in the Pakistani city of Lahore – guarded by uniformed Pakistani policemen holding machine guns.

    Of course, there is one more obvious question unanswered: couldn’t they have captured Bin Laden? Didn’t the CIA or the Navy Seals or the US Special Forces or whatever American outfit killed him have the means to throw a net over the tiger? “Justice,” Barack Obama called his death. In the old days, of course, “justice” meant due process, a court, a hearing, a defence, a trial. Like the sons of Saddam, Bin Laden was gunned down. Sure, he never wanted to be taken alive – and there were buckets of blood in the room in which he died.

    But a court would have worried more people than Bin Laden. After all, he might have talked about his contacts with the CIA during the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan, or about his cosy meetings in Islamabad with Prince Turki, Saudi Arabia’s head of intelligence. Just as Saddam – who was tried for the murder of a mere 153 people rather than thousands of gassed Kurds – was hanged before he had the chance to tell us about the gas components that came from America, his friendship with Donald Rumsfeld, the US military assistance he received when he invaded Iran in 1980.

    Oddly, he was not the “most wanted man” for the international crimes against humanity of 11 September 2001. He gained his Wild West status by al-Qa’ida’s earlier attacks on the US embassies in Africa and the attack on the US barracks in Dhahran. He was always waiting for Cruise missiles – so was I when I met him. He had waited for death before, in the caves of Tora Bora in 2001 when his bodyguards refused to let him stand and fight and forced him to walk over the mountains to Pakistan. Some of his time he would spend in Karachi – he was obsessed with Karachi; he even, weirdly, gave me photographs of pro-Bin Laden graffiti on the walls of the former Pakistani capital and praised the city’s imams.

    His relations with other Muslims were mysterious; when I met him in Afghanistan, he initially feared the Taliban, refusing to let me travel to Jalalabad at night from his training camp – he handed me over to his al-Qa’ida lieutenants to protect me on the journey next day. His followers hated all Shia Muslims as heretics and all dictators as infidels – though he was prepared to cooperate with Iraq’s ex-Baathists against the country’s American occupiers, and said so in an audiotape which the CIA typically ignored. He never praised Hamas and was scarcely worthy of their “holy warrior” definition yesterday which played – as usual – straight into Israel’s hands.

    In the years after 2001, I maintained a faint indirect communication with Bin Laden, once meeting one of his trusted al-Qa’ida associates at a secret location in Pakistan. I wrote out a list of 12 questions, the first of which was obvious: what kind of victory could he claim when his actions resulted in the US occupation of two Muslim countries? There was no reply for weeks. Then one weekend, waiting to give a lecture in Saint Louis in the US, I was told that Al Jazeera had produced a new audiotape from Bin Laden. And one by one – without mentioning me – he answered my 12 questions. And yes, he wanted the Americans to come to the Muslim world – so he could destroy them.

    When Wall Street journalist Daniel Pearl was kidnapped, I wrote a long article in The Independent, pleading with Bin Laden to try to save his life. Pearl and his wife had looked after me when I was beaten on the Afghan border in 2001; he even gave me the contents of his contacts book. Much later, I was told that Bin Laden had read my report with sadness. But Pearl had already been murdered. Or so he said.

    Yet Bin Laden’s own obsessions blighted even his family. One wife left him, two more appeared to have been killed in Sunday’s American attack. I met one of his sons, Omar, in Afghanistan with his father in 1994. He was a handsome little boy and I asked him if he was happy. He said “yes” in English. But last year, he published a book called Living Bin Laden and – recalling how his father killed his beloved dogs in a chemical warfare experiment – described him as an “evil man”. In his book, he too remembered our meeting; and concluded that he should have told me that no, he was not a happy child.

    By midday yesterday, I had three phone calls from Arabs, all certain that it was Bin Laden’s double who was killed by the Americans – just as I know many Iraqis who still believe that Saddam’s sons were not killed in 2003, nor Saddam really hanged. In due course, al-Qa’ida will tell us. Of course, if we are all wrong and it was a double, we’re going to be treated to yet another videotape from the real Bin Laden – and President Barack Obama will lose the next election.

    http://www.independent.co.uk/opinion/commentators/fisk/robert-fisk-was-he-betrayed-of-course-pakistan-knew-bin-ladens-hiding-place-all-along-2278028.html

  • Osama Dead: What Next for Pakistan?
    May 3, 2011
    By Yousuf Nazar

    Osama is dead, Obama is enjoying a surge in popularity, Pakistani military high command is hiding in embarrassment, and the big question for Pakistan is where do we go from here? Regardless of the doubts and reservations expressed by even erstwhile commentators like Robert Fisk, the world believes that Osama was killed by a US covert operations team while all these years Pakistan had denied that Osama was on her soil. Benazir Bhutto had even half-joked in 2004 that he could be in the basement of Musharraf’s presidency and had told David Frost in November 2007 that Osama was killed by Omar Saeed Sheikh whose handler, she had alleged, was the former head of the Intelligence Bureau Brig. (rtd) Ejaz Shah. She did not live to contradict or clarify that remark nor did anyone followed up on that. We would never find out whether it was a slip of tongue or she was playing hard ball with both Musharraf and Dick Cheney by indicating she was capable of spilling the beans.

    While it is easy to lambast the military establishment for obvious reasons, it is not clear if they really have been making a fool of the Americans or some parts of the US establishment have been complicit in the games our generals play. That both Obama and Clinton spoke about Pakistan cooperation indicates some kind of deal was struck. Can we assume that whilst our establishment was playing tango with the jihadists of all colours and shades for a decade, the CIA was just an innocent bystander whilst the US gave to Pak Army billions in cash and arms? This would imply that CIA is a bunch of idiots while our spooks were so brilliant. This seems like a big stretch. The way Obama has handled this indicates he wants to close this chapter after strengthening his credentials as a commander-in-chief who is a tough on security matters.

    Our anchors and other analysts tend to look through these matters either through ISI lenses or through US establishment’s but the death of Osama and the manner in which his ‘body’ was flown to Bagram and then buried at sea within hours suggests that there is more to this than meets the eye. I won’t speculate what as we have a lot of simpletons who jump to say ‘conspiracy’ while ignoring the long and deep history of the CIA-ISI joint collaboration including the arrest of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed (KSM) , a close buddy of Omar Saeed Sheikh who is still alive and whose extradition was never requested by the US government. KSM has never been tried in a civil court. Further, if some spooks or elements within the establishment had been harbouring Osama, a logical extension of this line of reasoning would be to raise questions about what did they know about 9/11 and what role, if any, they played? This can get really complicated and I do not think Pakistani or US establishment can afford to go in that direction.

    Let’s come back to what next question? Who will play the central role in Afghanistan is a key question. Pakistan fancies a leading role but the US has other ideas, among them, an important role for India. Pakistan’s support of the Talibans and other militant group and its hope or belief that it can use this as a bargaining chip seems to be reaching a dead end. The US after following a policy of “carrot and stick” appears to be adopting a more hawkish stance as an early settlement in Afghanistan and declaration of victory is a key political imperative for Obama as he prepares to go to the elections in 2012.

    The Financial Times says his death offers an opportunity to declare an end to the “war on terror”. The FT declares, “the Bush-inspired drive to make terrorism the centrepiece of US foreign policy was a mistake. The declaration of a “Global War on Terror” distorted American foreign policy and led directly to two wars – in Iraq and Afghanistan. The war on terror has guzzled billions of dollars in wasteful spending and spawned a huge and secretive bureaucracy in Washington. The death of bin Laden gives President Barack Obama the cover he needs to start quietly unwinding some of these mistakes.”

    Pakistani generals should quickly make up their mind. In today’s world, the notion of having a bunch of jihadis who can be used to contain India is a dangerous and out-of-date one. No world power, super, global, or regional, would support Pakistan against India given its rise on the global scene in the last decade. Time is running out and the generals must decide if they want to wait till the US starts bombing the “good Talibans” and cuts Pakistan to its size so that it reconciles its strategic ambitions with its size and economic and military strength or they are ready to show some realism and opt for an honourable settlement that might pave the way for Afghanistan to return to a semblance of if not complete stability and peace. Pakistan’s strategic options never looked so limited thanks to its strategy and the “intellectual depth” of our military strategists.

    http://www.stateofpakistan.org/osama-dead-what-next-for-pakistan

  • Osama’s hiding place 100 yards from PMA Kakul: CBS News
    May 2, 2011
    By Farrukh Siddiqui
    (CBS News/AP)

    ISLAMABAD – Osama bin Laden was holed up in a sprawling house just 100 yards from a Pakistani military academy when helicopters carrying U.S. anti-terror forces swooped in the early morning hours of Monday and killed him.

    Flames rose Monday from the building that was the apparent target of the raid as it was confirmed that the world’s most wanted fugitive died not in a cave, but in a town best known as a garrison for the Pakistani military. A U.S. official tells CBS News that one of bin Laden’s sons was also killed in the raid along with at least two others, but the official did not name the son or the others killed.

    The operation “doesn’t bode well for our friends” the Pakistanis, one U.S. official tells CBS News national security correspondent David Martin. The official, who spoke on condition they not be named, said it would be hard for the Pakistani government to explain how such a high-profile figure could have been living in such a high-profile residence “without their knowing”.

    U.S. officials tell CBS that cooperation from the Pakistanis “assisted in this lead as we pursued it,” but the U.S. shared no specific intelligence on the compound prior to the raid.

    “We are very concerned that he was inside of Pakistan but this is something that we will work with Pakistan government about,” one official tells CBS.

    Pakistani officials and a witness said bin Laden’s guards opened fire from the roof of the building, and one of the choppers crashed. The sound of at least two explosions rocked the small northwestern town of Abbottabad where the al Qaeda chief made his last stand. The U.S. said no Americans were harmed in the raid.

    Abbottabad is home to at least one regiment of the Pakistani army, is dotted with military buildings and home to thousands of army personnel. Surrounded by hills and with mountains in the distance, it is less than half a days drive from the border region with Afghanistan, where most intelligence assessments believed bin Laden was holed up.

    The news he was killed in an army town in Pakistan will raise more pointed questions of how he managed to evade capture and whether Pakistan’s military and intelligence leadership knew of his whereabouts and sheltered him. Critics have long accused elements of Pakistan’s security establishment of protecting bin Laden, though Islamabad has always denied this.

    Abbotabad resident Mohammad Haroon Rasheed said the raid happened about 1:15 a.m. local time.

    “I heard a thundering sound, followed by heavy firing. Then firing suddenly stopped. Then more thundering, then a big blast,” he said. “In the morning when we went out to see what happened, some helicopter wreckage was lying in an open field.”

    He said the house was 100 yards away from the gate of the academy.

    A Pakistani official in the town said fighters on the roof opened fire on the choppers as they came close to the building with rocket propelled grenades. Another official said four helicopters took off from the Ghazi air base in northwest Pakistan. Last summer, the U.S. army was based in Ghazi to help out in the aftermath of the floods. Women and children were taken into custody during the raid, he said. Both officials spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the information.

    7 Responses to Osama’s hiding place 100 yards from PMA Kakul: CBS News

    Alan Marshall on May 2, 2011 at 8:27 pm
    The reports say: Osama was shot in the head: Why didn’t they get him alive?

    Why have they not released video of his body and face? Why he was buried in SEA in a a rush unlike the way Saddam Husein was shown off to the whole world? If Pakistani intelligence was hiding him, Americans are a bunch of idiots who have been giving billions to Pakistan including F16s!

    If Al Qaeda is an ideology and consists of independent cells all over the world, what purpose does it serve to have hundreds of thousands of troops in Afghnaistan? Anyone would enlighten me on this?

    If this is realy true, then one more point, a human – on the ground – intelligence operation got him, not a drone attack!

    REPLY

    Shezz on May 2, 2011 at 10:09 pm
    Osama not killed yet, How they get him from Islamabad to the sea in a matter of hours wheras Islambad is over 700-800 miles away from the sea! They would have to have transported him IMMEDIATELY no time for DNA testing or confirmation something smells fishy no pun intended. See truth with Videos & Photos at http://itwel.com/obama-confirmed-osama-killed-updates-photos-and-videos.php

    REPLY

    Farah on May 2, 2011 at 11:16 pm
    They say they first took the body to Bagram airbase in Afghanistan. The nearest sea is Persian Gulf or Arabia Sea… they would have had to fly over Pakistan again…..

    REPLY

    J-P Sartre on May 2, 2011 at 11:59 pm
    The first three responses are total gibberish besides being uninformed “Tuesday morning quarterbacking”. Congratulations to all involved in this operation!

    REPLY

    U Hussein on May 3, 2011 at 1:19 pm
    Clearly the American’s do not trust Pakistanis. This is a love hate relationship where neither side trust the other. I am no supporter of OBL but clearly Pakistan’s air space was violated while the radar (provided by US) systems must have been jammed by the on going operation. For over an hour the Generals kept sleeping. Question is why the Americans who give so much aid did not take anyone in confidence in the Pakistan govt? What kind of Generals the Kakul academy produces? What good are these expensive toys if we cannot defend Pakistan’s territorial integrity? This gives a clear indication to the Indians to come & invade to take out the nuclear facility. It can be done in an hour. All our generals want is to amass more plots of real estate & so long as the real estate prices go up the country’s airspace can be violated. We surely live in Alice in Wonderland !

    REPLY

    Jack on May 3, 2011 at 11:52 pm
    If UBL is in fact, still alive, as some believe, why doesn’t he make an appearance? Our special forces are the best in the world and they deserve all the accolades due them. Had I been his capturer I would have placed an incendiary grenade in a particular orifice saving the need for transport to any ocean burial.

    REPLY

    Stoneweapon on May 4, 2011 at 3:23 am
    The location for the Osama bin Laden assassination was staged in the PMA Kakul backyard for its close proximity to provide a coverup operation. This drama in Abbottabad was staged to justify US withdrawal from Afghanistan. It would have been very embarrassing for USA to leave Afghanistan without showing the world that it had completed its mission of getting Osama. A complete fabrication that reminds me of WMD in Iraq.

    http://www.stateofpakistan.org/osamas-hiding-place-100-yards-from-pma-kakul-cbs-news

  • Robert Fisk: If this is a US victory, does that mean its forces should go home now?
    Iran spoke for many Arabs when it said Bin Laden’s death took away the West’s reason to have troops in the region

    Wednesday, 4 May 2011

    So why are we in Afghanistan? Didn’t the Americans and the British go there in 2001 to fight Osama bin Laden? Wasn’t he killed on Monday? There was painful symbolism in the Nato airstrike yesterday – scarcely 24 hours after Bin Laden’s death – that killed yet more Afghan security guards. For the truth is that we long ago lost the plot in the graveyard of empires, turning a hunt for a now largely irrelevant inventor of global jihad into a war against tens of thousands of Taliban insurgents who have little interest in al-Qa’ida, but much enthusiasm to drive Western armies out of their country.

    The gentle hopes of Hamid Karzai and Hillary Clinton – that the Taliban will be so cowed by the killing of Bin Laden that they will want to become pleasant democrats and humbly join the Western-supported and utterly corrupt leadership of Afghanistan – shows just how out of touch they are with the blood-soaked reality of the country. Some of the Taliban admired Bin Laden, but they did not love him and he had been no part of their campaign against Nato. Mullah Omar is more dangerous to the West in Afghanistan than Bin Laden. And we haven’t killed Omar.

    Iran, for once, spoke for millions of Arabs in its response to Bin Laden’s death. “An excuse for alien countries to deploy troops in this region under the pretext of fighting terrorism has been eliminated,” its foreign ministry spokesman has said. “We hope this development will end war, conflict, unrest and the death of innocent people, and help to establish peace and tranquility in the region.”

    Newspapers across the Arab world said the same thing. If this is such a great victory for the United States, it’s time to go home; which, of course, the US has no intention of doing just now.

    That many Americans think the same thing is not going to change the topsy-turvy world in which US policy is framed. For there is one home truth which the world still has not grasped: that the revolutions in Tunisia and Egypt – and, more pressing, the bloodbaths in Libya and Syria and the dangers to Lebanon – are of infinitely graver importance than blowing away a bearded man who has been elevated in the West’s immature imagination into Hitlerian proportions.

    Turkish prime minister Erdogan’s brilliant address in Istanbul yesterday – calling for the Syrians to stop killing their people and for Gaddafi to leave Libya – was more eloquent, more powerful and more historic than the petty, boastful, Hollywood speeches of Obama and Clinton on Monday. We are now wasting our time speculating who will “take over” al-Qa’ida – Zawahiri or Saif al-Adel – when the movement has no “leadership” as such, Bin Laden being the founder rather than the boss.

    But, a day being a long time in the killing fields of the Middle East, just 24 hours after Osama Bin Laden died, other questions were growing thicker yesterday. If, for example, Barack Obama really thinks the world is “a safer place” after Bin Laden’s death, how come the US has increased its threat alert and embassies around the world are being told to take extra precautions against attack?

    And just what did happen in that tatty compound – no longer, it seems, a million-dollar “mansion” – when Bin Laden’s sulphurous life was brought to an end? Human Rights Watch is unlikely to be the only institution to demand a “thorough, transparent investigation” into the killing.

    There was an initial story from Pentagon “sources” which had two of Bin Laden’s wives killed and a woman held as a “human shield” dying too. Within hours, the wives were alive and in some accounts, the third woman simply disappeared.

    And then of course, there’s Pakistan, eagerly telling the world that it participated in the attack on Bin Laden, only to have President Zardari retract the entire story yesterday. Two hours later, we had an American official describing the attack on Bin Laden as a “shared achievement”.

    And there’s Bin Laden’s secret burial in the Arabian Sea. Was this planned before the attack on Bin Laden, with the clear plan to kill rather than capture him? And if it was carried out “according to Islamic rights” – the dead man’s body washed and placed in a white shroud – it must have taken a long time for the officer on the USS Carl Vinson to devise a 50-minute religious ceremony and arrange for an Arabic-speaking sailor to translate it.

    So now for a reality check. The world is not safer for Bin Laden’s killing. It is safer because of the winds of freedom blowing through the Middle East. If the West treats the people of this region with justice rather than military firepower, then al-Qa’ida becomes even more irrelevant than it has been since the Arab revolutions.

    Of course, there is one positive side for the Arab world. With Bin Laden killed, the Gaddafis and the Salehs and the Assads will find it all the more difficult to claim that a man who is now dead is behind the popular revolutions trying to overthrow them.

    http://www.independent.co.uk/opinion/commentators/fisk/robert-fisk-if-this-is-a-us-victory-does-that-mean-its-forces-should-go-home-now-2278508.html

  • The house of secrets: behind the high walls of Osama’s compound
    For years, neighbours wondered what went on in the mysterious ‘rich person’s house’. Now they know

    By Andrew Buncombe

    They thought the house belonged to a drug-dealer, or perhaps a smuggler, and local people had learned to leave it well alone. When the milkman delivered he did not even ring the bell but simply left it outside the green double gates. If anyone ever stopped and leaned against the cream coloured wall someone would emerge and tell them to clear off. Cricket-playing children who exuberantly hit their shots over the compound’s high, barbed-wire topped walls were given money to go the local shop, but they were never allowed inside to retrieve their ball.

    “There was a rumour that the person living there was a smuggler from Peshawar,” said Hussain Jaffri, a resident of the Thanda Choha neighbourhood of Abbottabad, and whose house overlooked the compound occupied by Osama bin Laden. “In this area, when there is a large house you know it’s black money, perhaps from white powder.”

    Amid the dusty lanes and neatly planted fields where Bin Laden’s unwitting neighbours lived and worked, a picture emerged yesterday of a close-knit community that was suspicious about the occupants of the three-storey compound and yet who, for whatever reason, chose to make no further inquiries. “When there is a rumour like this, you don’t want to go and knock on the door,” Mr Jaffri said.

    Locals said the occupants of the compound, replete with a poplar and peach trees, had minimal interaction with their neighbours. They did not celebrate national or religious holidays, they did not pass the time of day with other people and they had few dealings with traders. One occupant, said to be called Nadeem, left the compound every day in a red Suzuki minivan to collect supplies. Every day he returned with a goat, presumably for slaughter. No one said they had ever caught a glimpse of the 54-year-old Saudi fugitive, said to have lived on the upper two floors.

    “It was a rich person’s house. Only a rich person could afford a house like that. Only that house had the high walls,” said Tanvir Ahmed, who runs an ice-cream shop. “If a child’s ball went over the wall they would not be allowed in to get it. They would be given money instead – about 150 rupees [£1].”

    Umar Daniel Alvi, a 16-year-old who played football and cricket close to the house said: “There was a rumour in the neighbourhood that it was occupied by the nephew of [late Taliban leader] Baitullah Mehsud. I went there on two occasions when we hit the ball over. I tried to get it but there was nobody there.”

    The compound had been designed as if discouraging curious eyes was a top priority. In addition to the high walls, gaps in the brickwork that could have allowed a view inside were cemented shut. A full-length window opening onto the street was also filled in. Anyone seeking entry had to use an intercom. “We never saw anyone making deliveries there,” said Zahn Mohammad, who lived opposite the compound.

    Yet by far the most remarkable thing about the property, that some locals had nicknamed Waziristan Haveli (mansion) because its residents were thought to be Pashtuns from Pakistan’s tribal areas, was its location. Less than half a mile away stands the Kakul military academy, a prestigious military school where two weeks ago Pakistan’s military chief, Gen Ashfaq Kayani, gave a speech claiming the armed forces had broken the back of the militancy that has so rocked the country.

    Closer still – less than 100 yards from the compound’s 15ft walls that are topped with three strands of barbed wire – is the well-maintained house of Major Amir Aziz, an officer believed to be serving with the army’s medical corps. Locals said Mr Aziz had lived there for many years and that his father had occupied the property before that. Yesterday no one answered the door when The Independent knocked, though young children could be seen inside. The major’s neighbour, a woman who gave her name as Bibi Saida, said Mr Aziz was well-known in the neighbourhood. As for the people who had lived in the compound beyond, her comments echoed those of many others. “We don’t know anything,” she said. “We are so shocked.”

    Many have asked how Bin Laden and his small group could have been living here, so close to the heart of the Pakistan establishment without anyone knowing. If neighbours had suspicions then why did the police never investigate, especially given the compound’s proximity to the military academy? Why does it seem the occupants never even tried to develop a plausible cover story for their presence in this neighbourhood, made up largely of ethnic Hazara people? The arrest in Abbottabad earlier this year of al-Qa’ida suspect, Umar Patek, has added further intrigue. “I would think it’s probably complicity at some level, otherwise it would be impossible,” said analyst Talat Masood, a former senior army officer. “People in Pakistan want to know who is living next [door]. Someone must have been going in and coming out. I’m puzzled and ashamed.”

    Pakistan’s spy agency, the ISI, yesterday claimed it had raided the compound in 2003 when it was being constructed but had since then it had been “off the radar”. A local land registry official, Mohsin Arshad, said the property had been bought in the mid 2000s by Arshad Khan and his brother, who came from Charsadda in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. What has happened to the brothers remains unclear. They also kept themselves to themselves, locals said.

    One of the rare instances of interaction between the occupants of the compound and the local people involved Nadeem, driver of the red minivan, and an 11-year-old girl called Asra Amjad. The young girl saw Nadeem collecting grass and asked him what it was for. He told her that he kept rabbits in the compound. A few days later the driver came to the family house with two rabbits for Asra and her family. The youngster had no insight into who the rabbits may have belonged to. But she and her brother were happy to have them as their pets, scampering on the roof that overlooks the compound, an unlikely reminder of their unlikely neighbours.

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/asia/the-house-of-secrets-behind-the-high-walls-of-osamas-compound-2278576.html

  • Intelligence chief who ‘turned a blind eye’ to notorious neighbour
    By Kim Sengupta, Defence Correspondent
    Wednesday, 4 May 2011

    General Kayani, left, holds sway over the security forces

    Speaking to a passing out parade at Pakistan’s equivalent of Sandhurst, General Ashraf Kayani was expansive. His forces had “broken the back” of Islamist militancy. “Inshallah, we shall prevail,” he declared.

    If he had been sunning himself on the balcony of his million-dollar mansion on that day, Osama Bin Laden would have had little difficulty hearing the army chief decry Western claims that Pakistan’s intelligence and military communities harboured terrorists. The head of al-Qa’ida had for several years been living close to the gates of the Kakul Military Academy, which also housed members of the ISI, Pakistan’s secret police, supposedly close allies of the CIA and MI6.

    It may seem scarcely believable, to most observers, that the head of Pakistan’s military would be unaware that the world’s most-wanted terrorist was living in Abbottabad, a garrison town. The general’s focus on the “success” of his counter-terrorist policy would look like an exercise in black humour directed at the US and the West, who have given his forces billions of dollars to hunt down Bin Laden and his network.

    Yesterday, in an article in the Washington Post, the Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari said: “He [Bin Laden] was not anywhere we had anticipated he would be, but now he is gone,” without offering any further explanations. The country’s Foreign Minister, Salman Bashir, told a news conference in Islamabad, 35 miles from where the al-Qa’ida leader was found: “Who did what is beside the point… The issue of Osama bin Laden is history.”

    While in Washington senators and congressmen were insisting that this latest, and by far the most serious, charge of Pakistan’s complicity with Islamic terrorism cannot be swept under the carpet, in London David Cameron emphasised the need for supporting the country’s faltering democratic institutions and that he accepted statements by Mr Zardari and his Prime Minister, Yusuf Raza Gilani, that they did not collude with terrorism.But neither the President nor the Prime Minister are considered to be as powerful as General Kayani in Pakistan.

    When, under American pressure the Pakistani government attempted to put the ISI – which, according to published WikiLeaks cables, it had designated a “terrorist organisation” – under the control of the Interior Minister, Rehman Malik, the move was stopped within 24 hours by General Kayani. The general, a former head of ISI, insisted that the organisation remain under military – in effect, his – control, with a protégé, General Ahmed Shuja Pasha. as the nominal head. Thus when the chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral Mike Mullen, charged that “the ISI has a long-standing relationship with the Haqqani network”, an al-Qa’ida linked organisation carrying out attacks in Afghanistan, the finger was being pointed at General Kayani.

    Evidence of the growing enmity between the military in the two countries was highlighted by General Kayani’s repost that he “strongly rejected negative propaganda of not doing enough” to combat Islamist violence and also criticised drone attacks by the US in Pakistani sovereign territory.

    The Americans continued to accuse the ISI of duplicity. It was another episode of this double-dealing while the hunt for Bin Laden was under way which, say some US officials, reinforced their decision not to share information about the al-Qa’ida leader with the Pakistanis. Early last year Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, the Taliban’s operational commander, had begun what was seen as promising talks towards a ceasefire with the Afghan government.

    They were taking place without the involvement of the Pakistanis and excluded the Haqqani network and, according to American sources, the ISI found out about the talks and set about sabotaging them by trying to arrest Baradar who, fearing precisely this, had disappeared on returning to Pakistan. The Pakistanis then approached the CIA for help with electronic surveillance in their search for a “high-value target”, without giving much further details. The CIA supplied the technical expertise and Baradar was arrested in Karachi. The Americans, on finding out the identity of the captive, asked for access to him and were denied. Baradar has since been released but operates, according to Western officials, on a short ISI leash.

    Pakistani officials maintain that much of the Western criticism is unfounded and point to a sheer number of arrests of al-Qa’ida figures in Pakistan, including that of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the man who confessed, albeit after “waterboarding”, to masterminding the 9/11 attacks. They also point out that an important Indonesian al-Qa’id linkman, Umar Patek, was arrested in Abbottabad, proving that the town was not being used as safe-house for jihadists.

    The US acknowledges that vital evidence about the location of Bin Laden’s trusted courier, which eventually led them to the al-Qa’ida head, came from Pakistani sources, although they insist not from the ISI or the military. But a steady stream of information has been going to the Americans, not least to carry out drone strikes, sometimes targeting so-called Pakistani allies, which indicates that there are those within the security establishment not towing the ISI line.

    What happens in the future may depend to a large extent on General Kayani. There is talk of a “Kayani doctrine” in which he is said to hold that the military and the ISI are the only viable forces that can hold Pakistan together. A majority of the 11 corps commanders are said now to question whether the US alliance brings more problems than benefits and a large number of middle-ranking officers are sympathetic towards Islamist militants. An overwhelming number are opposed to the American drone strikes which have so far claimed almost 2,000 lives inside Pakistan.

    The tense and fragile alliance between the US and Pakistan, enmeshed in secrets and lies, is likely to take a long time to recover from the fallout over what brought about its existence in the first place, the hunt for Osama Bin Laden.

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/asia/intelligence-chief-who-turned-a-blind-eye-to-notorious-neighbour-2278579.html

  • Pakistan faces big questions, says Cameron
    By Nigel Morris, Deputy Political Editor

    David Cameron stoked diplomatic tensions with Pakistan last night after he said Osama bin Laden must have had a “support network” in the country to live undetected for several years.

    He said the Pakistani authorities would have to face “searching questions” over the al-Qa’ida leader’s comfortable existence in the fortified compound stormed by US troops.

    The Prime Minister also raised the prospect of accelerating the withdrawal of British troops from Afghanistan if the Taliban took the opportunity to lay down their weapons and join talks on the nation’s future.

    He said he did not want a “flaming great row” with a Pakistani leadership which was committed to tackling terrorism. But Mr Cameron made clear he suspected officials within the country of helping Bin Laden to hide from view.

    He said in a statement to MPs: “The fact that Bin Laden was living in a large house in a populated area suggests that he must have had a support network in Pakistan. We don’t currently know the extent of that network, so it is right that we ask searching questions about it – and we will.”

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/pakistan-faces-big-questions-says-cameron-2278577.html

  • Leading article: Tolerance for Pakistan’s double game must end

    It beggars belief that Osama bin Laden, the world’s most wanted man, has been living just 800 yards from Pakistan’s equivalent of Sandhurst, without the military, intelligence or civilian authorities knowing he was there.

    There can be little doubt that Pakistan faces both ways on terrorism, as David Cameron once put it. Everyone knows that, not least the United States, which spends $2bn a year arming the Pakistan military and $7bn on civilian aid there. For years the West has tolerated Pakistan’s double game because it needs its support, even half-heartedly, in Afghanistan. That is more true than ever if Washington is to begin withdrawing troops from Afghanistan this summer.

    Pakistan has lost more civilians than any other nation to Islamist terror attacks, but it also has high levels of support for extremists in its population. With its nuclear weapons Pakistan would be a far greater prize for al-Qa’ida than arid Afghanistan. The generals and spymasters who are seeking to appease both sides are playing a dangerous game and could yet become the terrorists’ next victims. Yet civilian rule is a fragile flower in Pakistan. The ruling coalition is fragmenting, the economy is in crisis and the Taliban is conducting a homegrown campaign of suicide bombings. The danger is that post-Bin Laden pressures will lead Washington to bypass the government and deal direct with the army, which is Pakistan’s only strong institution.

    That would be a mistake. The delicate task is to support the government while pressurising it to do more to combat Pashtun terrorism, to assert democratic values, tackle corruption, build a modern taxation system and reform the blasphemy laws.

    Britain has made the right moves in increasing aid to education in Pakistan, where more than 40 per cent of children under nine do not go to school. Improving education is the way to make youngsters less vulnerable to radicalisation. But that aid has been “backloaded” so that it will only continue if the first tranches show good results. We must not flinch from turning off that aid if necessary. The Pakistani state must know we are serious about our support, but also about the need to see progress.

    http://www.independent.co.uk/opinion/leading-articles/leading-article-tolerance-for-pakistans-double-game-must-end-2278387.html

  • Obama Kills Osama

    Quote:
    “I met repeatedly with my national security team as we developed more
    information about the possibility that we had located bin Laden hiding
    within a compound deep inside Pakistan.

    And finally, last week, I determined that we had enough intelligence
    to take action and authorized an operation to get Osama bin Laden and
    bring him to justice.

    Today, at my direction, the United States launched a targeted
    operation against that compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan. A small team
    of Americans carried out the operation with extraordinary courage and
    capability. No Americans were harmed. They took care to avoid civilian
    casualties.

    After a firefight, they killed Osama bin Laden and took custody of his body.

    Over the years, I’ve repeatedly made clear that we would take action
    within Pakistan if we knew where bin Laden was. That is what we’ve
    done.

    But it’s important to note that our counterterrorism cooperation with
    Pakistan helped lead us to bin Laden and the compound where he was
    hiding”

    —President Obama

    President Obama’s statement makes it quite clear that the operation
    that killed Osama was a US operation authorized by the US President on
    the basis of intelligence developed by the US. Pakistan’s help is
    acknowledged but probably only in the context that Pakistan had
    granted US the access that gave it the capability to do all that it
    did. Pakistan’s sensitivity to Davis type covert operations now makes
    sense. The Corbett Report raises another question:

    Quote:
    “Then on December 26, 2001, Fox News reported on a Pakistan Observer
    story that the Afghan Taliban had officially pronounced Osama Bin
    Laden dead earlier that month… What followed was a string of
    pronouncements from officials affirming what was already obvious:
    supposedly living in caves and bunkers in the mountainous pass between
    Afghanistan and Pakistan, Osama would have been deprived of the
    dialysis equipment that he required to live… On January 18, 2002,
    Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf announced quite bluntly: “I think
    now, frankly, he is dead.”On July 17, 2002, the then-head of
    counterterrorism at the FBI, Dale Watson, told a conference of law
    enforcement officials that “I personally think he [Bin Laden] is
    probably not with us anymore,” before carefully adding that “I have no
    evidence to support that.”In October 2002, Afghan President Hamid
    Karzai told CNN that “I would come to believe that [Bin Laden]
    probably is dead.”In November 2005, Senator Harry Reid revealed that
    he was told Osama may have died in the Pakistani earthquake of October
    that year… In September 2006, French intelligence leaked a report
    suggesting Osama had died in Pakistan. On November 2, 2007, former
    Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto told Al-Jazeera’s David Frost
    that Omar Sheikh had killed Osama Bin Laden. In March 2009, former US
    foreign intelligence officer and professor of international relations
    at Boston University Angelo Codevilla stated: “All the evidence
    suggests Elvis Presley is more alive today than Osama Bin Laden.”In
    May 2009, Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari confirmed that his
    “counterparts in the American intelligence agencies” hadn’t heard
    anything from Bin Laden in seven years and confirmed “I don’t think
    he’s alive.” Now in 2011, President Obama has added himself to the mix
    of people in positions of authority who have pronounced Osama Bin
    Laden dead. Some might charge that none of the previous reports had
    any credibility, but as it is now emerging that Osama’s body was
    buried at sea less than 12 hours after his death with no opportunity
    for any independent corroboration of his identity”.

    —The Corbett Report

    Notwithstanding the doubt created by the Corbett Report the world has
    accepted that this ninth report of Osama’s death is authentic and
    credible. No doubt there is evidence available to confirm the disposal
    of his remains and that this will eventually surface if required. The
    question that is really the elephant in the room is whether Pakistan
    knew of Osama’s hideout and had not disclosed it or whether his
    discovery and elimination by the US on Pakistani soil was a complete
    surprise to them. Some questions raised in an article by Steve Coll
    could lead to an answer and probably will in due course: “The initial
    circumstantial evidence suggests… that bin Laden was effectively
    being housed under Pakistani state control”. Pakistan will deny this;
    it seems safe to predict, and perhaps no convincing evidence will ever
    surface to prove the case.

    If one were a prosecutor at the United States Department of Justice,
    however, one would be tempted to call a grand jury. Who owned the land
    on which the house was constructed? How was the land acquired, and
    from whom? Who designed the house, which seems to have been
    purpose-built to secure bin Laden? Who was the general contractor? Who
    installed the security systems? Who worked there? Are there witnesses
    who will now testify as to who visited the house, how often, and for
    what purpose?

    The US Counter Terrorism Chief John Brennan has refused to rule out
    official Pakistan backing for Osama bin Laden and has said that
    Islamabad was only told of the raid that killed the Al Qaeda leader
    after US forces had left Pakistani airspace; “we are looking right now
    at how he was able to hold out there for so long and whether or not
    there was any type of support system within Pakistan that allowed him
    to stay there”. Senator Joe Lieberman also said that “Pakistan will
    need to prove to us that they did not know that bin Laden was there”.
    It is in Pakistan’s interest that these matters be cleared up.

    Perhaps the most important aspect of the entire episode is the impact
    that this will have on US-Pakistan relations. This could be an
    opportunity to put the relationship on a positive track by addressing
    each others concerns. For the US this implies looking beyond the
    transactional relationship that addresses immediate US interests of
    with drawing US/ISAF troops from Afghanistan. For Pakistan it means
    getting out of the past mindset and looking at this situation as an
    opportunity to forge a new relationship with India and Afghanistan
    keeping in view the economic benefits of cooperation and an end to
    conflict. Right now Pakistan sees an India-US- Afghan government
    alliance that is hostile to it and an internal environment that has
    multiple security, economic and political issues.

    No doubt there will be repercussions from the Osama killing in the
    region and elsewhere because of Al Qaeda’s wide dispersal world wide
    but beyond that is the potential of the new Pakistan-Afghanistan
    initiative for peace, the composite dialogue between India and
    Pakistan and the progress in the joint pipeline project through
    Afghanistan and Pakistan.

    http://spearheadresearch.org/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?p=7419#7419

  • NickKristof Nicholas Kristof
    Look at the forms required in Pakistan for building a home:
    http://bit.ly/ltvXtw (via @Takhallus) And ISI didn’t know?

    Pakistan’s main intelligence agency, the ISI, has said it is
    embarrassed by its failures on al-Qaeda leader Osama Bin Laden.

    An ISI official told the BBC the compound in Abbottabad where Bin
    Laden was killed by US forces on Sunday had been raided in 2003.

    But the compound “was not on our radar” since then, the official said.

    He gave new details of the raid, saying Bin Laden’s young daughter had
    said she saw her father shot.

    Bin Laden, 54, was the founder and leader of al-Qaeda. He is believed
    to have ordered the attacks on New York and Washington on 11 September
    2001, as well as a number of other deadly bombings.

    ‘Caught by surprise’
    The ISI official told the BBC’s Owen Bennett-Jones in Islamabad that
    the compound in Abbottabad, just 100km (62 miles) from the capital,
    was raided when under construction in 2003.

    It was believed an al-Qaeda operative, Abu Faraj al-Libi, was there.

    But since then “the compound was not on our radar, it is an
    embarrassment for the ISI”, the official said. “We’re good, but we’re
    not God.”

    The compound is just a few hundred metres from the Pakistan Military
    Academy – the country’s equivalent of West Point or Sandhurst.

    The ISI official also gave new or differing accounts of some of the
    events of Sunday’s raid. They included:

    There were 17-18 people in the compound at the time of the attack
    The Americans took away one person still alive, possibly a Bin Laden son
    Those who survived the attack included a wife, a daughter and eight to
    nine other children, not apparently Bin Laden’s; all had their hands
    tied by the Americans
    The surviving Yemeni wife said they had moved to the compound a few months ago
    Bin Laden’s daughter, aged 12 or 13, saw her father shot
    The official said it was thought the Americans wanted to take away the
    surviving women and children but had to abandon the plan when one of
    the helicopters malfunctioned.

    Continue reading the main story
    Analysis

    Owen Bennett Jones
    BBC News, Islamabad
    Clearly there were people helping Bin Laden in this location… were
    they state employees, were they simply from Taliban-related groups,
    were they from the intelligence agencies?

    For all Americans may ask the questions, I doubt they will get any
    answers. There will be ambiguity about this and the Pakistanis will
    deny they had any knowledge whatsoever.

    The establishment here is made up of army leadership, intelligence
    agency leadership and some senior civil servants, and they have always
    run Pakistan, whether democratic governments or military governments,
    and those people do have connections with jihadis.

    The difficulty the West has is in appreciating there are more than 20
    different types of jihadi organisations, and al-Qaeda is just one of
    them. The state has different policies towards different types of
    group and that subtlety is often lost on Western policy-makers.

    The helicopter was destroyed by the special forces unit.

    The US has not commented on anyone it captured or had planned to
    capture, other than saying it had taken Bin Laden’s body.

    The ISI official said the organisation had recovered some documents
    from the compound.

    The CIA is already said to be going through a large number of hard
    drives and storage devices seized in the raid.

    White House counter-terrorism adviser John Brennan said there had been
    concern Pakistani forces would deploy to counter the US Navy Seal team
    conducting the raid but it had avoided any confrontation.

    The ISI official said: “We were totally caught by surprise. They were
    in and out before we could react.”

    Our correspondent says residents near the compound in Abbottabad
    reported that Pakistani soldiers had asked them to switch off their
    lights an hour before the attack, but the ISI official said this was
    not true and that it had no advance knowledge of the raid.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-south-asia-13268517

  • یکطرفہ آپریشن سے تعاون کو خطرہ:پاکستان، بتاتے تو راز افشا ہو جاتا: پنیٹا

    ہم نے تو بتایا تھا
    اسامہ ہلاکت ناکامی کی نشانی نہیں
    مردہ اسامہ زیادہ خطرناک؟
    اسامہ کی زندگی

    پاکستانی وزارتِ خارجہ نے کہا ہے کہ پاکستان اپریل دو ہزار گیارہ کے وسط تک امریکہ کے ساتھ ایبٹ آباد اور اس کے مضافات میں غیر ملکیوں کی نقل و حرکت کے بارے میں خفیہ معلومات کا تبادلہ کرتا رہا ہے

    وزارتِ خارجہ کی طرف سے جاری ہونے والے ایک بیان کے مطابق انہیں معلومات کی بنیاد پر امریکی خفیہ ادارہ سی آئی اے اپنی اعلیٰ ٹیکنالوجی کی مدد سے اسامہ بن لادن تک پہنچنے میں کامیاب ہوا اور اس امر کو امریکی صدر اور سیکریٹری خارجہ نے بھی تسلیم کیا ہے۔’

    ایبٹ آباد میں اسامہ بن لادن کے خلاف آپریشن کی معلومات کو پاکستان سے خفیہ رکھنے کا فیصلہ اس خوف کی وجہ سے کیا گیا تھا کہ یہ راز افشا کر دیا جائے گا۔
    سی آئی اے سربراہ
    پاکستانی وزارتِ خارجہ نے کہا ہے کہ پاکستان اپریل دو ہزار گیارہ کے وسط تک امریکہ کے ساتھ ایبٹ آباد اور اس کے مضافات میں غیر ملکوں کی نقل و حرکت کے بارے میں خفیہ معلومات کا تبادلہ کرتا رہا ہے

    پاکستان نے پیشگی اطلاع دیے بغیر امریکی آپریشن پر شدید تحفظات کا اظہار کرتے ہوئے کہا کہ مستبقل میں ایسے یکطرفہ آپریشن سے نہ صرف پاکستانی تعاون خطرے میں پڑ جائے گا بلکہ ایسا کوئی آپریشن عالمی امن کے لیے بھی خطرناک ثابت ہو سکتا ہے۔

    ادھر سی آئی اے کے سربراہ لیون پنیٹا نے کہا ہے کہ ایبٹ آباد میں اسامہ بن لادن کے خلاف آپریشن کی معلومات کو پاکستان سے خفیہ رکھنے کا فیصلہ اس خوف کی وجہ سے کیا گیا تھا کہ یہ راز افشا کر دیا جائے گا۔

    لیون پنیٹا نے ٹائم میگزین کو بتایا ہے کہ یہ فیصلہ کیا گیا کہ اطلاعات کا تبادلہ اس مشن کو ناکام کر سکتا ہے۔

    جبکہ وائٹ ہاوس نے اب کہا ہے کہ جب اسامہ بن لادن کو گولیاں مار کر ہلاک کیا گیا تو وہ اس وقت مسلح نہیں تھے۔ وائٹ ہاوس کے ترجمان جے کارنی نے کہا کہ اسامہ نے مزاحمت کی جس پر انہیں ہلاک کر دیا گیا۔ تاہم انہوں نے یہ نہیں بتایا کہ مسلح نہ ہونے کے باوجود اسامہ نے مزاحمت کیسے کی۔

    جے کارنی نے کہا کہ امریکی فوجیوں کو اس آپریشن کے دوران اسامہ کے گھر میں موجود مسلح افراد کی جانب سے سخت مزاحمت کا سامنا کرنا پڑا۔

    پاکستانی وزارت خارجہ کے بیان کے مطابق ایبٹ آباد اور کے مضافاتی علاقے سن دو ہزار تین کے بعد سے خفیہ اداروں کی توجہ کا مرکز رہے ہیں اور انہیں خفیہ معلومات بنیاد پر آئی ایس آئی نے سن دو ہزار چار میں القاعدہ اہداف کے خلاف کامیاب آپریشن کیا تھا۔

    مستبقل میں ایسے یکطرفہ آپریشن سے نہ صرف پاکستانی تعاون خطرے میں پڑ جائے گا بلکہ ایسا آپریشن عالمی امن کے لیے بھی خطرناک ثابت ہو سکتا ہے۔
    پاکستانی وزارت خارجہ
    ’جہاں تک امریکہ کی طرف سے نشانہ بنائی جانے والی عمارت کا تعلق ہے، اس کے بارے میں آئی ایس آئی سی آئی اے اور دیگر دوست ملکوں کے خفیہ اداروں کے ساتھ سن دو ہزار نو تک انٹیلیجنس کا تبادلہ کرتا رہا ہے۔‘

    اس سے پہلے پاکستان کے خفیہ ادارے آئی ایس آئی نے کہا تھا کہ ایبٹ آباد میں اسامہ بن لادن کی موجودگی ادارے کے لیے سخت ہزیمت کا باعث بنی ہے۔

    اسلام آباد میں صحافیوں سے بات چیت کرتے ہوئے آئی ایس آئی کے حکام نے بتایا کہ جس مکان میں اسامہ بن لادن پناہ لیے ہوئے تھے انہیں اس کے بارے میں 2003 سے پتہ تھا۔

    بی بی سی کے اوئن بینٹ جونز کے مطابق آئی ایس آئی کے ایک افسر نے بتایا کہ سنہ 2003 میں جب یہ مکان زیرِتعمیر تھا اس پر القاعدہ کے ایک اور رہنما ابو فراج اللبی کی تلاش میں چھاپہ مارا گیا تھا جو اس وقت کے سربراہِ حکومت جنرل مشرف پر قاتلانہ حملے کے الزام میں مطلوب تھے۔

    تاہم بعد ازاں اس مکان کی نگرانی کا سلسلہ ختم کر دیا گیا اور اب پاکستانی خفیہ ادارے یہ نہیں جانتے تھے کہ وہاں اسامہ بن لادن موجود ہیں۔

    امریکی ہیلی کاپٹر پہاڑی علاقوں اور ایسی فضائی حدود کا استعمال کرتے ہوئے پاکستان میں داخل ہوئے جو ریڈار پر نہیں آتے ہیں۔
    پاکستان
    پاکستان نے ان اطلاعات کی سختی سے تردید کی ہے کہ ایبٹ آباد میں آپریشن کے لیے امریکی ہیلی کاپٹر پاکستانی غازی ائربیس سے اڑے تھے۔ پاکستان نے کہا ہے کہ پاکستان نے ایبٹ آباد میں آپریشن سے متعلق کسی قسم کی کوئی مدد نہیں کی۔

    پاکستان نے کہا ہے کہ امریکی ہیلی کاپٹر پہاڑی علاقوں اور ایسی فضائی حدود کا استعمال کرتے ہوئےپاکستان میں داخل ہوئے جو ریڈار پر نہیں آتے ہیں۔

    پاکستان نے کہا پہاڑی علاقہ ہونے کی وجہ سے امریکی ہیلی کاپٹروں کا پتہ نہیں چل سکا لیکن جوں ہی اسے ایبٹ آباد میں جاری آپریشن کے بارے میں اطلاعات ملی تو پاکستان فضائیہ کے ہوائی جہاز منٹوں میں ہوا میں فضا میں بلند ہوئے جس کو وائٹ ہاؤس کے مشیر جان برینن نے بھی تسلیم کیا ہے۔

    پاکستان میں اونچے دیواروں والے گھر کوئی انہونی بات نہیں ہے اور خصوصاً ایسے گھر جہاں خیبر پختونخوا اور قبائلی علاقوں کے متاثرین رہتے ہیں وہاں مقامی روایت کے مطابق دیواریں اونچی ہوتی ہیں۔
    پاکستانی وزارت خارجہ
    پاکستانی دفتر خارجہ نے ایبٹ آباد میں نشانہ بنائے جانے والےگھر کی دیواروں کے حوالے سے جاری بحث کے بارے میں کہا کہ پاکستان میں ایسےگھروں کا وجود کوئی انہونی بات نہیں ہے اور خصوصاً ایسے گھر جہاں خیبر پختونخوا اور قبائلی علاقوں کے متاثرین رہتے ہیں وہاں مقامی روایت کے مطابق دیواریں اونچی ہوتی ہیں۔

    اسامہ بن لادن کے خاندان کے افراد کے حوالے سے بیان میں کہا گیا ہے کہ وہ محفوظ ہاتھوں میں ہیں اور ان میں سے جن کو طبی امداد کی ضرورت تھی انہیں امداد دی جا رہی ہے۔ پاکستان نے کہا کہ پاکستانی قانون کے تحت ان افراد کو ان کے آبائی ممالک کے حوالے کر دیا جائے گا۔

    دفتر خارجہ نے کہا پاکستان کو پیشگی اطلاع دیے بغیر امریکہ نے جس ا نداز میں یہ آپریشن کیا ہے پاکستان کو اس پر شدید تحفظات ہیں۔

    پاکستان نے کہا کہ مستبقل کے ایسے یکطرفہ آپریشن اس جنگ میں پاکستانی تعاون کو نہ صرف خطرے میں ڈال سکتا ہے بلکہ عالمی امن کے لیے بھی خطرناک ثابت ہو سکتا ہے۔

    پاکستان نے کہا ہے کہ پاکستانی فوج اور خفیہ اداروں کی مدد سے القاعدہ اور دوسری دہشتگرد تنظیموں کی کمر توڑ دی گئی ہے اور امریکہ اور دوسری دوست ممالک کو القاعدہ کے خلاف جنگ میں کامیابیاں پاکستانی مدد سے ہی ملی ہیں۔

    اسامہ بن لادن کی بارہ سالہ بیٹی پاکستانی حکام کی تحویل میں ہے اور اس کا کہنا ہے کہ اس نے امریکیوں کو اپنے والد کو گولی مارتے دیکھا تھا۔
    حکام کا کہنا تھا کہ یہ انکشاف پاکستانی خفیہ ادارے کے لیے باعثِ شرمندگی ہے کہ اسامہ بن لادن پاکستان کے اس علاقے میں موجود تھا اور وہ اس سے لاعلم تھے۔ حکام کا کہنا تھا کہ ’ہم کارکردگی میں اچھے ہیں لیکن ہم خدا نہیں ہیں‘۔

    خفیہ ادارے کے حکام نے صحافیوں کو یہ بھی بتایا ہے کہ اسامہ بن لادن کی بارہ سالہ بیٹی پاکستانی حکام کی تحویل میں ہے اور اس کا کہنا ہے کہ اس نے امریکیوں کو اپنے والد کو گولی مارتے دیکھا تھا۔

    حکام کے مطابق ایبٹ آباد میں چھپے ہوئے اسامہ بن لادن کے خلاف امریکی کارروائی کے وقت اس گھر میں سترہ سے اٹھارہ لوگ موجود تھے اور اگر امریکی ہیلی کاپٹر تباہ نہ ہوتا توامریکی کمانڈوز تمام افراد کو ساتھ لے جاتے۔

    آئی ایس آئی کے ایک اہلکار نے صحافیوں کی بتایا کہ امریکی صرف اسامہ بن لادن کی لاش اور ایک دوسرے شخص کو جو شاید اسامہ بن لادن کے بیٹے تھے، زخمی حالت میں اپنے ساتھ لےگئے۔

    آئی ایس آئی نے اسامہ بن لادن کی بیوی سے بھی بات چیت کی ہے جنہوں نے ہوش میں آنے کے بعد بتایا کہ وہ یمنی نژاد ہیں اور وہ لوگ اس گھر میں کچھ ماہ پہلے ہی منتقل ہوئے تھے۔
    کارروائی کے دوران اس کمپاؤنڈ میں متعدد بچے اور عورتیں موجود تھے جن کے ہاتھ باندھ دیے گئے تھے اور ان کے خیال میں ایک امریکی ہیلی کاپٹر کو پیش آنے والے حادثے کی وجہ سے انہیں ساتھ اس لیے نہیں لے جایا گیا۔

    خیال کیا جاتا ہے کہ امریکی فوجی جاتے ہوئے جن چار لاشوں کو اس مکان میں چھوڑ گئے ان میں سے ایک اسامہ بن لادن کا بیٹا، دو بھائی اور ایک سکیورٹی گارڈ تھا۔

    اس حملے میں جو افراد بچ گئے ان میں اسامہ بن لادن کی ایک بیوی، ایک بیٹی اور آٹھ سے نو بچے ہیں۔ ایک لڑکی کے علاوہ باقی بچے بظاہر اسامہ بن لادن کے نہیں ہیں۔

    آئی ایس آئی نے اسامہ بن لادن کی بیوی سے بھی بات چیت کی ہے جنہوں نے ہوش میں آنے کے بعد بتایا کہ وہ یمنی نژاد ہیں اور وہ لوگ اس گھر میں کچھ ماہ پہلے ہی منتقل ہوئے تھے۔

    حکام کے مطابق اسامہ بن لادن کے خلاف آپریشن میں چار ہیلی کاپٹر استعمال ہوئے جن میں سے دو نے لینڈنگ کی۔ آئی ایس آئی کے اہلکار نے ان اطلاعات کی تردید کی کہ آپریشن سے ایک گھنٹہ پہلے پاکستانی فوجیوں نے ایبٹ آباد میں اسامہ بن لادن کے پڑوسیوں کو بتیاں بجھانے کے لیے کہا تھا۔

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/urdu/pakistan/2011/05/110503_zardari_osama_zs.shtml

  • Read Irfan Siddiqi’s prayer for OBL. This man represents PMLN. Shame!

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    وہ جوکوئی بھی تھا…!نقش خیال…عرفان صدیقی…وہ جو کوئی بھی تھا، اب اس کا معاملہ اللہ کے ہاتھ ہے۔

    پاکستانیوں کی بہت بڑی تعداد ایک سوگ کی سی کیفیت میں رہی۔ اس لئے نہیں کہ یہ سادہ و معصوم لوگ دہشت گردی سے ناتا رکھتے اور دہشت گردوں سے محبت کرتے ہیں۔ اس لئے بھی نہیں کہ اسامہ بن لادن ان کا محبوب تھا۔ اس لئے کہ ازل ازل سے انسانوں کی فطرت، خدا فراموش فرعونوں سے نفرت کرتی اور ان فرعونوں کو للکارنے والوں کو اپنا اپنا سا سمجھتی ہے۔ فرعونوں کا معتوب، جو کوئی بھی ہو، جیسا بھی ہو، انسانوں کا محبوب بن جاتا ہے۔ کیا اسامہ کی حکمت عملی اسلامی تعلیمات کے مطابق تھی؟ کیا ایک مرد دانا کی طرح وہ زمینی حقیقتوں کا شعور رکھتا تھا؟ کیا اس کے چنے ہوئے راستے نے بالعموم امت مسلمہ کے مفادات کی آبیاری کی؟ ان سوالوں پہ پہلے بھی بحث ہوتی رہی ، آئندہ بھی ہوتی رہے گی، دنیا میں ایسا کوئی شخص پیدا نہیں ہوا جس کے فکر و عمل سے اختلاف کرنے والا کوئی نہ ہو۔ اسامہ پر پہلے بھی سنگ زنی ہوتی رہی، آئندہ بھی نشتر زنی ہوتی رہے گی لیکن اس کی روح اب سود و زیاں کے دنیوی پیمانوں سے بہت دور جا چکی ہے۔ امریکہ ، نیٹو، یورپی یونین، اقوام متحدہ اور شکم پرست ہراول دستوں کی دسترس سے کوسوں آگے۔
    ٹیلی فونوں اور پیغامات کا تانتا بندھا رہا کہ اسے شہید، کیوں نہیں کہا جا رہا؟
    میں دل گرفتہ اہل وطن کو سمجھاتا رہا کہ معصوم و سادہ دل لوگو! ہم اسے شہید نہیں کہہ سکتے۔ اس لئے کہ شہنشاہ عالم پناہ خفا ہو جائے گا۔ اس لئے بھی کہ ہم دس سال سے، امریکی جنگ کا دست بازو ہیں اور اسامہ ہمارے مخالف لشکر میں سے تھا۔ اس لئے بھی کہ ہم اپنا پیٹ پالنے کے لئے امریکی نان نفقے کے محتاج ہیں۔ اس لئے بھی کہ امریکا دنیا کا تاجدار اور جابر ملک ہے اور ہمارے حکمرانوں کی باگیں اس کے ہاتھ میں ہیں۔ اور سب سے بڑھ کر اس لئے کہ ’دین غلامی“ میں امریکہ کو آنکھیں دکھانے اور اس سے پنجہ آزمائی کرنے والا غازی کہلا سکتا ہے نہ شہید۔
    دو دن سے ٹی ۔ وی چینلوں پر ایک تماشا سا لگا ہے۔ خبریں، تصویریں، فلمیں، تبصرے، تجزیے، امکانات، خدشات۔ میں ریموٹ کے بٹن دبا دبا کر چینل بدلتا اور میڈیا کے چلن دیکھتا رہا۔ ہر پاکستانی چینل پر وہی بولی، بولی جا رہی تھی جو اسامہ کے بارے میں امریکہ، یورپ اور دنیا کے دیگر مسلم بیزار منطقوں میں بولی جاتی ہے۔ ہم اسے مسلسل امریکہ کی آنکھ سے دیکھتے رہے، اس کے بارے میں پھیلائی گئی امریکی کہانیاں دہراتے رہے اور وقفے وقفے سے امریکہ ہی کی زبان میں اس پر تبصرے کرتے رہے۔ غلامی اسی طرح دلوں اور ذہنوں کے اندر گھونسلے بناتی ہے ۔ ہمیں کچھ ضرورت نہیں کہ اس کی زندگی کے نشیب و فراز کا جائزہ لیں اربوں اور کھربوں میں کھیلنے اور سونے کا چمچہ منہ میں لے کر پیدا ہونے والا شہزادہ، انجینئرنگ میں اعلیٰ تعلیم حاصل کرنے والا ہونہار نوجوان، اپنے خاندان کی بے کراں دولت لامحدود کاروباری امکانات اور عیش و عشرت سے پُر زندگی سے دستکش ہو کر غریب الوطنی، سخت کوشی، جہدو پیکار اور سامراج دشمنی کے خار زاروں کی طرف کیوں نکل آیا؟ دنیا میں کتنے ہیں جو شہزادگی ٹھکرا کر کسی مقصد کی لگن میں ایسی راہوں پر نکل آتے ہیں جہاں اذیتوں اور مشقتوں کے سوا کچھ نہیں ہوتا اور جہاں موت سائے کی طرح ساتھ ساتھ چل رہی ہوتی ہے ۔ دو دو ٹکے کی نوکریوں اور رسوائیوں میں گندھی بے ننگ و نام حکومتوں کے لئے اپنی آن اور اپنا ایمان بیچ دینے والوں کی اس دنیا میں کتنے ہیں جو جُنوں کا ایسا سرمایہ رکھتے ہوں؟
    جب وہ افغانستان کے پہاڑوں، گھاٹیوں اور میدانوں میں سوویت یونین سے لڑ رہا تھا، جہاد منظم کر رہا تھا، اس کی دولت تحریک مزاحمت کی رگوں میں لہو بن کر دوڑ رہی تھی تو وہ ”عظیم مجاہد“ اور ” بہادر جانباز“ کہلاتا تھا۔ امریکہ اس کی بلائیں لیتا تھا۔ اس کی راہوں میں سرخ قالین بچھاتا تھا، پھر زمانہ بدلا۔ روس دریائے آمو کے اس پار چلا گیا کم و بیش چوتھائی صدی بعد امریکہ اسی اسامہ کی تلاش میں افغانستان پر چڑھ دوڑا۔ اس لئے کہ اسامہ امریکی توسیع پسندی کے خلاف تھا۔ اس کا نعرہ تھا کہ امریکی افواج سعودی عرب اور دیگر اسلامی ممالک سے نکل جائیں وہ امریکا کی اسرائیل نوازی پر بھی معترض تھا۔ نائن الیون کے فوراً بعد اعلان ہوا کہ یہ اسامہ کا کیا دھرا ہے ۔ آج تک اس الزام کا کوئی ایک ٹھوس ثبوت سامنے نہیں لایا جا سکا۔ اکتوبر 2001ء میں امریکہ نے افغانستان پر یلغار کر دی۔ دنیا کا سب سے بڑا بارود خانہ اور مہلک ٹیکنالوجی رکھنے والا ملک، بیسیوں عالمی افواج کے ساتھ ایک عشرے تک ٹامک ٹوئیاں مارتا رہا۔ اسامہ نے کہا تھا۔ ”تم مجھے زندہ گرفتار نہیں کر سکتے“ اس نے اپنے جانثار گارڈ سے کہہ رکھا تھا کہ ”جب کبھی مجھے گرفتار کرنے کی کوشش کی جائے تو میرا سینہ چھلنی کر دینا“ ایک معتبر اخباری رپورٹ کے مطابق ایسے ہی ہوا۔ کامل دس برس تک ایک شخص عالمی فرعون کے لہو میں انگاروں کی طرح دہکتا رہا۔ اس کے دل میں ترنیم کش کی طرح پیوست رہا۔ رعونت میں لتھڑے حکمران پہاڑوں سے سر پھوڑتے، وادیوں میں بھٹکتے رہے لیکن ایک ”سرکش باغی“ کو زنجیر نہ ڈال سکے۔
    شہنشاہ عالم پناہ بارک اوباما نے کہا ” انصاف ہو گیا۔ یہ پوری دنیا کے لئے خوشی کا دن ہے“ اس نے دہشت گردی کے نتیجے میں ہلاک ہونے والوں کا ذکر کیا۔ یتیم ہو جانے والے بچوں، اجڑی آغوش والی ماؤں اور اولاد کھو دینے والے باپوں کا تذکرہ کیا۔ اسرائیلی وزیراعظم نے خوشی کے شادیانے بجائے۔ سارا یورپ جشن کی سی کیفیت میں آگیا۔ بھارت کا چہرہ تمتما اٹھا کابل کے چغہ پوش مسخرے کی باچھیں کھل اٹھیں۔ اور سید عبدالقادر گیلانی کے خانوادے سے تعلق کا دعویٰ کرنے والے سید زادہ ملتان اعلیٰ حضرت یوسف رضا گیلانی نے کہا۔ ”یہ فتح عظیم ہے۔“ اقتدار کی چند روزہ لذتیں بھی انسان کو کتنا کھوکھلا ، کتنا بودا، کتنا خالی خالی سا کر دیتی ہیں۔
    ہمارے وزیراعظم نے ہزاروں قتل اسامہ کے کھاتے میں ڈال دیئے۔ انہیں امریکی ڈرونز کا لقمہ بننے والوں کی یاد نہ آئی جو نائن الیون کے ہلاک شدگان سے بہر حال زیادہ ہیں۔ پہلے دفتر خارجہ اور پھر وزیراعظم نے قومی تاریخ کا سب سے لغو، سب سے بے معنی، سب سے بے حمیت اور سب سے لایعنی بیان داغا کہ ”امریکہ نے سب کچھ اپنی اعلان کردہ پالیسی کے مطابق کیا ہے“ کیا معنی ہیں اس بے سروپا جملے کے، سب جانتے ہیں کہ امریکہ نے جو کچھ کیا، وہ اس کی پالیسی اس کی تاریخ، اس کے مزاج اور اس کی رعونت کے عین مطابق ہے لیکن پاکستان کی پالیسی کیا ہے؟ اگرکل امریکہ اپنے اہداف اور اپنی پالیسی کے مطابق ہمارے ایٹمی اثاثوں کے خلاف ایسا ہی آپریشن کر ڈالے تو سید زادہ کیا یہی تسلی دے گا کہ ”یہ امریکی حکومت نے اپنی طے شدہ پالیسی کے مطابق کیا ہے؟“ یہ بے حمیتی کا وہ مقام ہے جس پر بات کرتے ہوئے قلم کو بھی ندامت محسوس ہوتی ہے۔
    سوالات ہیں اور ان گنت ہیں۔ کئی گھنٹے گزر جانے کے بعد بھی قوم اندھیرے میں ہے۔ سوالات کے اس لق و دق جنگل سے کوئی راستہ نہ نکلا تو پاکستان شدید مشکلات کا شکار ہو جائے گا۔ ابھی سے آثار نظر آرہے ہیں کہ اس ڈرامے کے ذریعے حکومت، فوج اور آئی۔ ایس۔ آئی کو مجرم بنا کر عالمی کٹہرے میں کھڑا کر دیا گیا ہے دیکھئے آگے دیکھئے کیا ہوتا ہے؟ اور اوباما کو کون بتائے کہ ہمارے بچے بھی درختوں پر نہیں لگتے، ماؤں کی کوکھ سے جنم لیتے ہیں اور دنیا اسامہ کے نہ رہنے سے امن نہیں پائے گی، اس دن سکون آشنا ہو گی جب فرعون مزاج امریکہ دوسروں کو بھی انسان سمجھنے لگے گا۔
    اب شیخ اسامہ بن لادن کا معاملہ اپنے اللہ کے ساتھ ہے۔ جو ہر انسان کے ظاہری عمل کو بھی دیکھتا ہے اور نیتوں کا حال بھی جانتا ہے۔ اسے ہم جیسے خود فروشوں، بزدلوں، کمزوروں، شکم پرست بونوں اور بندگان امریکہ کی طرف سے ”شہادت“ کے کسی تمغے کی حاجت نہیں۔ اگر وہ اللہ کی میزان میں کم وزن نکلا تو سزا پائے گا۔ اگر اس کے اعمال بارگاہ عالی میں مقبول ٹھہرے تو اس کی لاش سمندر کی مچھلیاں کھائیں یا جنگل کے درندے، وہ شہیدوں کے جلو میں کسی سنہری مسند پر بیٹھا ہو گا۔
    اگر شہنشاہ عالم برا نہ مانیں اور اس کی چوکھٹ پہ سجدہ ریز ہمارے حکمران خفا نہ ہوں تو آیئے اس کے لئے دست دعا بلند کریں۔ اللہ اس کی لغزشوں اور کوتاہیوں سے درگزر فرمائے، اسے اپنے بے پایاں عفو و کرم سے نوازے اور اسے اپنے بندگان خاص کے مقام سے سرفراز فرمائے۔ (آمین)

    http://search.jang.com.pk/details.asp?nid=526163

  • Unauthorised raid must not serve as precedent, US told By Baqir Sajjad Syed | From the Newspaper (7 hours ago) Today
    Pakistan army soldiers and police officers patrol past house, background, where it is believed al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden lived in Abbottabad, Pakistan on Monday, May 2, 2011. Bin Laden, the mastermind behind the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks that killed thousands of people, was slain in his hideout in Pakistan early Monday in a firefight with US forces, ending a manhunt that spanned a frustrating decade. – Photo by AP

    ISLAMABAD: More than 36 hours after the US killed Al Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden in a stunning operation in the garrison town of Abbottabad, embarrassed Pakistani leadership tried on Tuesday evening to shrug off some of the discomfiture and, for the first time, came up with its own narrative of the events that had led to the detection and eventual elimination of Bin Laden, while reminding the Americans that their unilateral action should be an exception and not a rule.

    “This event of unauthorised unilateral action cannot be taken as a rule. The government of Pakistan further affirms that such an event shall not serve as a future precedent for any state, including the US. Such actions undermine cooperation and may also some time constitute threat to international peace and security,” a statement issued by the Foreign Office said.

    “The government of Pakistan expresses its deep concerns and reservations on the manner in which the government of the United States carried out this operation without prior information or authorisation from the government of Pakistan.”

    ‘Red lines’ earlier conveyed to the Obama administration by Pakistan had specifically stressed on ‘no foreign boots on Pakistani soil’.

    The statement spelt out why it was taking the raid as an exception.

    “The government of Pakistan recognises that the death of Osama bin Laden is an important milestone in fight against terrorism and that the government of Pakistan and its state institutions have been making serious efforts to bring him to justice.”

    The statement, however, appeared to be contradicting the initial official reaction issued on Monday which was seen by many as an attempt to possibly express helplessness about, if not justify, the US Navy Seal strike team’s incursion under CIA command. It said: “This operation was conducted by the US forces in accordance with declared US policy that Osama bin Laden will be eliminated in a direct action by the US forces, wherever found in the world.”

    Information Minister Firdous Awan had gone one step further by giving it the cover of international law when she said the US action had been conducted in exercise of a UNSC resolution.

    Was Tuesday’s reaction just an afterthought? Or did the blowback the military got over the perceived violation of national sovereignty push the Foreign Office to restate its policy of ‘no tolerance’ for foreign military action on its soil?

    The message, on the face of it, seemed to have been designed to silence public criticism and questioning at home about the conduct of the operation, but it also contained a nuanced note for the international audience, particularly India, which has been mulling plans for a long time for targeting groups based on Pakistani soil it consider as a threat.

    In this context the statement reminded the international community of Pakistan’s cooperation in counter-terrorism efforts, including the arrest of some high-profile terrorists.

    “Pakistan, being mindful of its international obligations, has been extending full and proper cooperation on all counter-terrorism efforts, including exchange of information and intelligence. Pursuant to such cooperation, Pakistan had arrested several high-profile terrorists.”

    Further cautioning against any future incursion, the statement reminded about the importance of public support for the military and government, which it feared to lose if a unilateral action was to happen again.

    “The government of Pakistan and its armed forces consider support of the people of Pakistan to be its mainstay and actual strength. Any actions contrary to their aspirations, therefore, run against the very basis on which the edifice of national defence and security is based.”

    Telling the Pakistani version of how US detected Osama’s presence in Abbottabad, the statement said that ISI had been sharing information about the compound, which was raided by the US forces, with CIA and other friendly intelligence agencies since 2009. This flow of information about presence of foreigners in the surroundings of Abbottabad continued till mid-April.

    “It is important to highlight that taking advantage of much superior technological assets, CIA exploited the intelligence leads given by us to identify and reach Osama bin Laden, a fact also acknowledged by the US president and secretary of state, in their statements.”

    The statement reiterated that neither the country’s civilian nor military leadership had knowledge of the US operation in advance.

    It recalled that Pakistan Air Force had reacted to the incident by scrambling its jets into action.

    While the Foreign Office said PAF had gone into action minutes after the receipt of information, a statement by White House Adviser John Brennan used to corroborate that indicated that PAF fighters weren’t able to detect the invading aircraft.

    http://www.dawn.com/2011/05/04/unauthorised-raid-must-not-serve-as-precedent-us-told.html

  • CIA Chief Breaks Silence: Pakistan Would Have Jeopardized bin Laden Raid, ‘Impressive’ Intel Captured
    By MASSIMO CALABRESI
    Tuesday, May 3, 2011

    MICHELE ASSELIN / CONTOUR / GETTY IMAGES FOR TIME
    In his first interview since commanding the mission to kill Osama bin Laden, CIA chief Leon Panetta tells TIME that U.S. officials feared that Pakistan could have undermined the operation by leaking word to its targets. Long before Panetta ordered Vice Admiral William McRaven, head of the Joint Special Forces Command, to undertake the mission at 1:22 p.m. on Friday, the CIA had been gaming out how to structure the raid. Months prior, the U.S. had considered expanding the assault to include coordination with other countries, notably Pakistan. But the CIA ruled out participating with its nominal South Asian ally early on because “it was decided that any effort to work with the Pakistanis could jeopardize the mission. They might alert the targets,” Panetta says.

    The U.S. also considered running a high-altitude bombing raid from B-2 bombers or launching a “direct shot” with cruise missiles but ruled out those options because of the possibility of “too much collateral,” Panetta says. The direct-shot option was still on the table as late as last Thursday as the CIA and then the White House grappled with how much risk to take on the mission. Waiting for more intelligence also remained a possibility. (See photos of Obama monitoring the bin Laden mission.)

    On Tuesday, Panetta assembled a group of 15 aides to assess the credibility of the intelligence they had collected on the compound in Abbottabad where they believed bin Laden was hiding. They had significant “circumstantial evidence” that bin Laden was living there, Panetta says — the residents burned their trash and had extraordinary security measures — but American satellites had not been able to photograph bin Laden or any members of his family. The Tuesday meeting included team leaders from the CIA’s counterterrorism center, the special-activities division (which runs covert operations for the agency) and officials from the office of South Asian analysis.

    Panetta wanted to get those aides’ opinions on the potential bin Laden mission, and he quickly found a lack of unanimity among his team. Some of the aides had been involved in the Carter Administration’s effort to go after the hostages held by the Iranians 30 years ago; others had been involved in the ill-fated “Black Hawk Down” raid against Somali warlords in 1993. “What if you go down and you’re in a firefight and the Pakistanis show up and start firing?” Panetta says some worried. “How do you fight your way out?”

    But Panetta concluded that the evidence was strong enough to risk the raid, despite the fact that his aides were only 60%-80% confident that bin Laden was there, and decided to make his case to the President. At the key Thursday meeting in which President Obama heard the arguments from his top aides on whether or not to go into Pakistan to kill or capture bin Laden, Panetta admitted that the evidence of bin Laden’s presence at the compound was circumstantial. But “when you put it all together,” Panetta says he told the room, “we have the best evidence since [the 2001 battle of] Tora Bora [where bin Laden was last seen], and that then makes it clear that we have an obligation to act.”

    Obama decided that Panetta’s arguments trumped two other options: striking the compound remotely or waiting until more evidence was available to prove bin Laden was there. “If I thought delaying this could in fact produce better intelligence, that would be one thing,” Panetta says he argued, “but because of the nature of the security at the compound, we’re probably at a point where we’ve got the best intelligence we can get.” (See photos of bin Laden’s Pakistan hideout.)

    For weeks, Panetta had been pushing the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency to try to get photographic confirmation of the presence of the bin Laden family. “NGA was terrific at doing analysis on imagery of that compound,” he says, but “I kept struggling to say, ‘Can’t you at least try to get one of the people that looks like [bin Laden]?’ ” NGA produced photographs of the two couriers and their families that McRaven’s Navy Seal team used to identify players in the compound as they made their way toward bin Laden.

    Panetta only learned that the President had been convinced by his arguments on Friday, when Obama said he was authorizing the helicopter mission and made his order official in a signed letter. After he received the order, Panetta told McRaven of the President’s decision and instructed him to launch. He told him the mission was “to go in there [and] get bin Laden, and if bin Laden isn’t there, get the hell out!”

    CIA officials turned a windowless seventh-floor conference room at Langley into a command center for the mission, and Panetta watched the operation unfold from there. As he and his team waited for McRaven to report on whether bin Laden was indeed at the compound, Panetta says the room was tense. “I kept asking Bill McRaven, ‘O.K., what the hell’s this mean?,’ ” and when McRaven finally said they had ID’d “Geronimo,” the mission code name for bin Laden, “All the air we were holding came out,” Panetta says. When the helicopters left the compound 15 minutes later, the room broke into applause. (See the moment of triumph at the White House.)

    The aftermath of the mission has been productive. The U.S. collected an “impressive amount” of material from bin Laden’s compound, including computers and other electronics, Panetta says. Panetta has set up a task force to act on the fresh intelligence. Intelligence reporting suggests that one of bin Laden’s wives who survived the attack has said the family had been living at the compound since 2005, a source tells TIME.

    That will raise questions about the Pakistani government’s possible awareness of bin Laden’s location in recent years. But one of Panetta’s predecessors says this can work to U.S. advantage. “It opens up some opportunities for us with Pakistan,” says John McLaughlin, former deputy CIA chief. “They now should feel under some great pressure to be cooperative with us on the remaining issues,” like going after the Taliban elsewhere in the country. “It’s called leverage.”

    Read more: http://swampland.time.com/2011/05/03/cia-chief-breaks-silence-u-s-ruled-out-involving-pakistan-in-bin-laden-raid-early-on/#ixzz1LMgemZNh

  • Hanging around the Y-junction

    10.11.2010 · Posted in Foreign Affairs, Security
    The United States can only delay making the real strategic decision

    It was interesting to see, towards the end of Bob Woodward’s Obama’s Wars, members of the Obama administration realise that the United States is in the same place today as it was in early 2009. Recent events validate that assessment. Frustrated with the Pakistani army’s refusal to shut down taliban safe havens, the US-led forces attacked across the border killing Pakistani soldiers. The Pakistani military retaliated by shutting down the supply route, letting taliban militants destroy some trucks and show that it has the ability to inflict some pain. This was roughly the state of affairs when Barack Obama took over as president.

    This is exactly what we had argued:
    Sooner or later, the Obama administration will come to realise that it has no way to make the Pakistani military establishment seriously fight and defeat the jihadi groups, which includes the Taliban, al-Qaeda and outfits like the Lashkar-e-Taiba. When that moment comes, Barack Obama will need to choose between direct confrontation with the Pakistani military-jihadi complex and colossal strategic defeat. [Operation Markarap]
    What now? It is unlikely that President Obama would choose “direct confrontation with the Pakistani military-jihadi complex” just yet. The race to find options short of that is almost certainly on, and a “throw them a bone” alternative will be sought. There are three possible bones. First, to accept a pro-Pakistani political dispensation in Afghanistan. Second, to accept the “legitimacy of Pakistan’s nuclear weapons”. Third, to press India to compromise on Kashmir.

    The first option doesn’t appeal to General Ashfaq Kayani at this stage because he believes he can get there without the United States. The second option is a status symbol they can do without, not least because China continues to support the expansion of the Pakistani arsenal. The third option might just do the trick, because which Pakistani general is immune to the potential glory of being the one who won Kashmir?

    So expect Washington to exert pressure on India over Kashmir. Expect pressure to restart the composite dialogue and suchlike. It’ll take the Obama administration a year or so to realise that this is a dead-end. General Kayani will probably realise it a little before Washington does. And then what?

    Well, we told you already. Barack Obama will need to choose between direct confrontation with the Pakistani military-jihadi complex and colossal strategic defeat.

    http://acorn.nationalinterest.in/2010/10/11/hanging-around-the-y-junction/

  • جائے وقوعہ سے ہزار گز کے فاصلے پر مقیم مقامی سیاست دان راجہ کامران کا موقف بھی دوسرے لوگوں سے مختلف نہیں البتہ ان کا کہنا ہے کہ انھوں نے اس رات پولیس کی ان کے بقول غیر معولی سرگرمی دیکھی۔

    ان کا کہنا ہے کہ اس رات تقریباً نو بجے بعض پولیس اہلکار غیر معمولی طور پر لوگوں سے پوچھ گچھ کرتے ہوئے دیکھے۔

    انھوں نے کہا کہ ’عمومی طور پر اس روڈ پر فوج ہی گشت کرتی ہے اور پولیس نہیں ہوتی اور اس اس لحاظ سے یہ غیر معمولی بات تھی۔‘ راجہ کامران نے کہا کہ انھوں نے یہ سوچا کوئی اہم شخصیت آرہی ہوگی یا واپس جارہی ہوگی جس کی وجہ سے اس روڈ پر پولیس گشت کر رہی ہے۔

    ان کا کہنا ہے کہ چند گھنٹوں کے بعد ہیلی کاپٹروں کی پروازیں اور دھماکوں کی آوازیں سنی گئیں۔ لیکن ان کا کہنا ہے کہ ’اس دوران فوج یا پولیس علاقے میں موجود نہیں تھی اور وہ ہیلی کاپٹروں کے واپس جانے کے بعد وہاں پہنچے تھے۔

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/urdu/pakistan/2011/05/110504_army_helicopter_a.shtml

  • پشاور سے نامہ نگار عزیز اللہ خان نے بتایا کہ اسلامک لائیرز موومنٹ نے اسامہ بن لادن اور امریکی کارروائی میں ہلاک ہونے والے دیگر افراد کی غائبانہ نماز جنازہ ادا کی۔ نماز جنازہ کا وقت صبح دس بجے مقرر تھا لیکن بعد میں نماز جنازہ سیکیورٹی وجوہات کی بنیاد پر بعد نماز ظہر ادا کی گئی ۔ اس نماز جنازہ میں دو سو کے لگ بھگ لوگوں نے شرکت کی ہے۔

    اسلامک لائئرز موومنٹ کے صوبائی صدر غلام نبی ایڈووکیٹ نے بی بی سی کو بتایا کہ مذہبی اور سیاسی جماعتوں کو سامنے آکر یہ فرض کفایہ ادا کرنا چاہیے تھا لیکن افسوس کی بات ہے مذہبی اور سیاسی رہنما مکمل خاموش ہیں

    civil society

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/urdu/world/2011/05/110504_reporters_log_wednesday_rh.shtml

  • Two good friends sharing (Sherry Rehman and Fazlur Rehman):

    مولانا فضل الرحمان کی پریشانی

    حسن کاظمی
    بی بی سی اردو ڈاٹ کام، برسلز

    مولانا فضل الرحمان کشمیر کمیٹی کے سربراہ کی حیثیت سے برسلز میں تھے

    اسامہ بن لادن کی امریکی آپریشن میں ہلاکت کے بعد مولانا فضل الرحمان جو کشمیر کمیٹی کے چیئرمین کی حثیت سے برسلز کے دورے پر تھے سب سے زیادہ پریشان رہے۔

    گو ان کے دورے کا مقصد یورپی پارلیمنٹ میں کشمیر سینٹر برسلز کے زیرِ اہتمام دو روزہ ’گلوبل ڈسکورس آن کشمیر‘ میں شرکت تھا مگر اتوار کی رات ہی سے ہر ایک اسامہ بن لادن کی ہلاکت کے بارے میں ان کی رائے جاننے کا خواہاں تھا۔

    اس پروگرام میں پاکستان سے سابق وزیرِ خارجہ شاہ محمود قریشی، سابق وفاقی وزیرِ اطلاعات شیری رحمان، مسلم لیگ ن کے احسن اقبال کے علاوہ اسلامی ممالک کی تنظیم او آئی سی کے خصوصی مندوب برائے کشمیر اے عالم موجود تھے مگر تقریباًَ ہر شخص کی توجہ کا مرکز مولانا فضل الرحمان تھے۔

    سوموار کو ہوٹل میں ناشتے کی میز پر شیری رحمان نے مولانا صاحب سے ازراہِ تفنن پوچھا کہ ’یہ آپ نے کیا کروا دیا ہے‘۔ جواب میں مولانا صاحب نے مسکرا کر کہا ’ہم نے کچھ نہیں کیا‘

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/urdu/world/2011/05/110504_fazal_brussles_fz.shtml

  • “Reasons for Failure of Pakistan Government in finding Osama Bin Laden. “
    In view of present scenario of “Failure of Pakistan Government to detect Osama” residing one of its cities. In such condition it is the responsibility of Intellectuals of Pakistan to try to analyze the past history of Pakistan and find out that why Pakistan was stable in the era of Quaid-e-Azam and General Zia, and was a most stable and strong country of the region in spite of all adversaries and enmity of British Empire, India and Soviet Union and why it has become so much unstable and uncontrollable in the era of General Musharaf and Mr.Zardari in spite of support of World Super power USA, NATO and other nations.
    USA spreading extremism and anarchy in Pakistan.
    People of Pakistan know very well that USA record with reference to use of Nuclear Bomb on Japan to Vietnam war and victimization of people of Palestine to occupation of Afghanistan and opposition of revolution in Iran to invasion of Iraq on the basis of biased and bogus reasons is by any standard is not praise worthy.
    The way USA is extra judicially and mercilessly murdering religious Muslim community in FATA area of Pakistan, and opposing to librations and freedom movements of Muslim areas of Palestine, Kashmir, Chechen region and support of occupants (India, Israel and Russia) of these areas by military and other means by USA is more than sufficient that USA is in fact not their well wisher and in fact a biased country and victimizer of them.
    On one side USA demanding Pakistan military to flow their blood against militants on other side even not ready for provision of night vision goggles and even information about drones attacks.
    On one side USA using Data, information, intelligence provided by Pakistan and using inhuman and barbaric tactics to torture arrested militants handed over by Pakistan to USA even by ignoring and violating USA own rules, regulations, ethics and laws.
    On one side searching Pakistani government officials at airports very harshly and in misbehaving way before entering in USA but itself even not providing any information about its CIA agents involved in murdering common people under the disguise of diplomats.
    On one side USA blocking aid to Pakistan military units who killed in a YouTube video clip to militants, but on other side itself involved in extra judicially, boastfully and mercilessly murdering unarmed Osama Bin Laden by using excessive military force in the presence of his 5-10 years old innocent children and housewives in his home in the darkness of night, and raiding like thieves in their home where not a single gun and explosive was present. What was the charge against his innocent children.
    Moreover announcement by CIA Director, that they conduct such type of 2-3 operations daily in night in Afghanistan is a clear evidence that USA is behaving like a fierce beast in this region.
    If USA was able to detect Osama by using advanced technology of satellites and by utilizing intelligence data and information provided by Pakistani agencies, then the best possible way was to arrest Osama Bin Laden in peaceful and non violent way by involving Pakistani security agencies and to penalize him through civilized judicial process.
    On one side Americans becoming champions of human rights on other side becoming so mad that celebrating the death of children and women and throwing dead body in the sea like Hollywood barbarians.
    USA is killing the militants extra judicially and violently by using Drones and Choppers in Pakistan but the consequences and results of such acts are that in protest relatives of murdered people by ignoring all teachings and guidelines of Islam and ethics are making suicidal attacks in mosques ,bazaars, shrines and Police stations and killing innocent people who have nothing to do with the crimes of USA and Pakistani corrupt rulers, and threatening to kill every one who supports USA, ultimately further destabilizing and deteriorating the region and Pakistan, By using this policy USA making Pakistan a scapegoat and unstable state and spreading war and anarchy in Pakistan to make itself safe and secure, This is extreme selfishness and in fact cowardness.
    USA should help in solving the problem of Kashmir and Palestine to divert Muslims youth towards constructive activities and not to divert and throw them towards war and conflicts by keeping these small lands occupied by India and Isreal, Otherwise there will be no end of this nuisance of enmity and hatred among nations.
    Foolish Dictator Ship of Pervez Musharaf:
    Bringing War in Afghanistan and Pakistan:
    After 9/11 When he was waiting for help of USA for strengthening his dictatorship, he helped those enemies of Pakistan who were having desire to bring war and destruction in Afghanistan and Pakistan, while in fact that was a golden opportunity for convincing to USA and world that solution to the problem of extremism in Afghanistan should be left to both governments of Afghanistan and Pakistan, and at other hand it was a convenient opportunity for creating a union between Pakistan and Afghanistan for countering terrorism for the purpose of avoiding the war in the region. but due to his dictatorship these goals were not possible, specially when India the main enemy of Muslim unity in South Asia pressurized Pakistan, by giving unnatural offer of Air bases in India to USA for aggression against Afghanistan while in fact by this offer it was not possible for USA to attack Afghanistan, by this offer, India just aim was to force Pakistan to become an ally of USA against Afghanistan, so that a hatred may be created between Pakistan and Afghanistan, This foolish General was unable to comprehend this policy of India, due to which so much civilian atrocities are going on in this region even today and this region has become the most destabilized region of the world.
    War against Afghanistan was opposed by civilian, military intellectuals, Corps Commanders and people of Pakistan, but dictator was having no care about that. and was interested in his personnel interest
    War against Afghanistan has caused a huge destruction in Afghanistan and large number of Pakistani civilians and military personnel’s have been killed.
    Destruction of Pakistan.
    War against a neighbor Muslim country, has seriously damaged Pakistan Islamic Ideology, and it is simple that without adherence to ideology, no country in the world can survive, this is the reason that now Pakistan is facing serious problem in each and every sphere of life, Institutions of Government and Military, Parliament and Judiciary are now facing serious problems as all these pillars of state have been seriously damaged by dictatorial policies.
    Damage to Army:
    Due to operations against its own population, Pakistan Army has lost all support of people, this is the reason that due to policies of this dictator, daily so many soldiers and Police personnel’s are loosing their lives, Instead of protecting and helping to each other, Army and people of Pakistan are cutting throats of each other, Due to operation in FATA, Baluchistan, and operation of Lal Mosque, serious damage to image of army has occurred. This dictator did not know that only relation and link between different areas and sections of people of Pakistan is that of Islam, All energy and motivation of Pakistani nation comes from Islam, without that even survival of Pakistan is simply impossible, but this dictator was having no care of that, This is the reason that army and security forces have lost all motivation, and anti social elements are committing freely their crimes.
    Mr. ZARDARI (The most corrupted leader of world):
    Mr. Zardari corruption cases are pending in the courts from Islamabad to Switzerland, who became one of the richest person even after passage of 10 years of his life as prisoner,
    Mr. Zardari is so much corrupted and careless that he is only concern about terrorism in other parts of world like Mumbai and USA but he is not concerned about terrorism, target killings, suicidal attacks and victimization of common Pakistanis which is going on in Karachi, Lahore, Peshawar, Islamabad and other cities of Pakistan on daily basis.
    Politics and Policies of Mr. Zardari are just concentrated on the use of disease of ethnocentrism and provincialism for his survival and for the main objective of making money and taking the revenge of her wife from the people of FATA and NWFP, Mr.Zardari is an incompetent person for the post of president, he has become president of Pakistan, just due to greed and selfishness of the members of Parliament, as his own party was not having even simple majority in the Parliament and Mr. Zardari is taking the revenge of her deceased wife from people of FATA, and his policy is just killing and more killing of religious people of FATA and NWFP, Thousands of civilian peoples and army soldiers have been killed but there is no tears in his eyes he wants more deaths more attacks and more violence, therefore instead of making any effort for peace he is just saying that he wants victory he want to kill extremist Taliban, he say there is no option except war, he is desiring War in his own country with his fellow country men. , on one side he is using Pakistani security forces for killing tribal’s area people and on other hand helping and persuading USA to kill these tribal’s people, so that tribal’s people in reaction will do violent protest and attacks on USA and Pakistan Security forces in reaction and then Mr.Zardari will be able to claim that these are terrorist. By this vindictive policy Mr.Zardari Just want to satisfy his sense of revenge of the death of her wife, it is true that her wife was killed by some extremist elements due to her irresponsible statement that she would allow USA troops in FATA for operation against Talibans but now it is not correct to kill all religious people of FATA and NWFP in reaction to death of Benazir Bhutto, it will be justified to judicially penalize to those who have killed Benazir Bhutto.
    Reasons for Success of Religious Leaders and Failure of others:
    All success of Quaid-e-Azam and General Zia-ul-Haq were due to trust of Pakistani Nation on them due to their commitment with Islam, Muslims and Pakistan, in proving that commitment both were very proactive while present rulers are devoid of such characteristics, due to which today tribal people who have helped Pakistan in liberating 1/3 of Kashmir, and Mujahideen who helped Pakistan in Afghan Jihad are now attacking Pakistan security forces and national assets.
    Due to Quaid-e-Azam commitment and support for Islam and Muslims,he was able to compete both British Empire a World Super of that time and India second largest country of the world. In the same manner General Zia was able to give the defeat to Soviet Union a world super power,just by sensing the psychology and religious culture of people of Pakistan.
    While recent non-religious and ethnocentric rulers such as Musharaf and Zardari nor have any Ideology and neither have any courage to go in masses and are even unable to control the affairs of the Capital of Pakistan, Islamabad and the city of Rawalpindi where the General Head Quarter of Pakistan Army is located, because these rulers have chronically failed in proving their sincerity with Islam, Muslims and the people of Pakistan ,Which was proved on the day of Death of Benazir Bhutto, when workers and supporters of these non-religious leaders committed each and every crime against the innocent and peaceful citizens of Pakistan, both Musharaf who was in power at that time and Zardari who was the successor of Benazir chronically failed in protecting the assets and citizens from their violent supporters, therefore now how people of Pakistan can support and trust such selfish and deceptive leaders.
    It is the responsibility of world leaders specially western nations to analyze the situation scientifically, because even for Western Nations Jinnah and Zia , were more beneficial while it is quite obvious that Musharaf and Zardari who are just using guns to gain their objective will just fail, and Musharaf already had failed and the situation is highly volatile at present, therefore it is the need of time to encourage those people to come forward who can solve the crisis of Afghanistan and Pakistan peacefully with Ideological Warfare and not with deceptive politics and Guns.

    Corrupted Police Force of Provinces is making Pakistan a failed state:
    Maintaining the law and order is the responsibility of Provinces in Pakistan and Provinces are very proactive in demanding provincial autonomy but their performance in Provincial subject of maintaining Law and Order is zero and in fact X , In spite of Donations of Billions of Rupees from Federal Government and International Organizations provinces has chronically failed in delivering any thing to common people, It is very important to analyze the performances of provinces in view of continuous deteriorating situation in Pakistan, specially killing of ethnic minorities in Baluchistan province by majority Balouch ethnic group ,denial of rights of Identity and land ownership of ethnic minorities in city of Karachi and province of Sind by majority of Sindhi and Urdu speaking people, the disease of Provincialism and ethnocentrism is spreading and spreading without any stop, the details of disease of Provincialism and ethnocentrism and failure of provinces in serving common citizens with fairness due to Provincialism and ethnocentrism are as follows:
    • Provinces are using subject of Police as Jobs Banks for their ethnic and provincial supporters instead of recruiting people on merit for maintaining law and order.
    • When any person is recruited in police a huge amount of money is taken from that man as bribe.
    • When any one retires from police department he is required to pay money as bribe for the processing of his pension documents.
    • Even no proper training is given to policemen for maintaining law and order by provincial governments.
    • Even no proper training is given to policemen for their own safety by provincial governments.
    • Policemen are performing their duties without wearing any protective helmets and bullet proof jackets.
    • Provincial Police force is not interested in arresting criminals and anti social elements but in fact they are the main supporters of such criminals.
    • Provincial Police force is not interested in using modern techniques and creative tactics in capturing criminals, but they are mainly interested in money making and making friend ship with criminals.
    • Due to provincialism, ethnocentrism and racialism prevailing in structures of provinces, policemen are not committed with their duties and do not have any motivation for prevention of crimes and evils.
    • Due to provincialism, ethnocentrism and racialism, Policemen are involved just in making money by taking bribes from common and noble people.
    • Policemen are frightening noble citizens for taking bribes from them, but are friends of criminals involved in narcotics trade, social and immoral crimes.
    • Due to no commitment with any moral and ethical Ideology and due to disease of provincialism and ethnocentrism, criminals and terrorists are committing their crimes freely and police Department is totally inefficient in protecting the life and property of people which is obvious from following examples.
    1) Merciless killing and massacre in Karachi on 12 May 2008, in which police and provincial government were found helping the criminals, and officially no investigation was made by provincial government against such delirious crimes.
    2) Loot and arson on 27 December 2008, on the day of death of Benazir Bhutto, free hand was given to criminals for each and every type of crime by provincial governments and police and Railway and transport of people of other provinces was main target of these criminals, and later on all cases against these criminals were removed by Chief Minister of Sind.
    3) 0n 27 December once again police of province failed event to protect the property of people and free hand was given to criminals in committing their crimes.
    In case of snatching a car or Motor cycle when people go for registration of FIR to police, even then police ask for payment of bribe when the person is himself suffering from great trauma.
    Moreover whenever people ask provincial police to help them as their duty and responsibility police never help to people.
    From the unique example of Osama bin Laden event it is quite clear that Provincial Police Force is not after criminals and terrorist, but they are after common people to squeeze money, They never do house to house search to catch criminals ,in fact Police force of Pakistani Provinces is very coward and selfish they never dare to touch elite and military persons, That is the reason that Osama was living in a very comfortable way in a upscale residential area, Which was the basic reason for non detection of him by police and security forces.
    Usually in Pakistan criminals wear security forces dress and use vehicle colored like military vehicles to hide them selves so that no one can touch them, this tactic was also used by Palestinian hijackers in eighties when they hijacked a Lufth Hansa aero plane by using this technique.
    Similarly elite like to reside like Osama bin Laden in Defense societies where they completely become unaccountable and undetectable and even military persons have perception some one high ranking and respectable military person is living there.
    Provincialism is blocking the progress of Pakistani nation and creating problems in the development and establishing in fair and just system due to making of decisions on biased ethnic and racial basis by corrupted Provincial governments.
    Conclusion:
    If we want to be successful as a nation and state and want to get rid of evils, miseries and disasters, first of all we Pakistanis should have to be sincere with our Ideology which is based on the vision of Qauid-e-Azam that Pakistan a state of Muslims who follow principles and guidelines of Islam for welfare of themselves and for the welfare of all other humans regardless of their religion or nationality. Only By sincere adherence to ideology of Pakistan can produce a just and fair system in the state, and motivated and committed citizens of state and can ensure progress and development in science & technology, economics & prosperity and can attain respect and regard for Pakistan in the nations of world, otherwise by ignoring our ideology we will continue to suffer from the shadow of wild and strange ideologies like Socialism, Secularism, Communism, Ethnocenterism, Provincialism and narrow minded Nationalism and will remain like a toy and banana state due to interference and midwifery of other nations( USA,NATO,India,China and Russia) in the internal affairs of state, and due to our weak commitment with Ideology and state, alcoholic rulers like Bhutto and Musharaf and corrupted rulers like Zardari and Gillani will continue to victimize and humiliate us in the eyes of nations for their lust of luxuries and power and foolish criminals like Osama and misbehaving super powers like Soviet Union and USA will continue to abuse and violate our authority and laws as per their desire and vested interests.
    Written By:
    M.AKRAM KHAN
    Karachi, Pakistan:

  • There was also growing doubt about the US claims that Pakistan’s intelligence agencies involved in the raid.
    Lieutenant General Asad Durrani, former head of the ISI, Pakistan’s intelligence service, said it was “inconceivable” that his government was unaware of the US raid on Osama bin Laden’s compound.
    He claimed his country was forced to deny any knowledge of the raid to avoid a domestic backlash. The ISI’s official line has been that bin Laden’s compound had “slipped off our radar” after it raided the building in 2003 while hunting for another senior al-Qaeda operative.The agency claims it was unaware that bin Laden was hiding there.
    Lieutenant General Durrani, however, said that the denial was a “political” maneuver by the intelligence services to avoid claims that they were working too closely with the US.
    He said: “It is more likely that they did know [about the raid]. It is not conceivable that it was done without the involvement of Pakistani security forces at some stage. They were involved and they were told they were in position.
    “The army chief was in his office, the cordons had been thrown around that particular place. The Pakistani helicopters were also in the air so that indicates that it was involved.
    “[There are] political implications back home. If you say that you are involved there is a large, vocal faction of Pakistani society that will get very upset because we are carrying out repeatedly these operations with the Americans.”

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/al-qaeda/8493391/Osama-bin-Laden-dead-Blackout-during-raid-on-bin-Laden-compound.html?sms_ss=twitter&at_xt=4dc307f1cd6cd17b,0

  • Bin Laden’s Neighbors Say Compound Was Under Surveillance Since 2005

    Publication: Terrorism Monitor Volume: 9 Issue: 18May 5, 2011 04:18 PM Age: 44 min
    By: Arif Jamal

    Locals gather outside of the compound in Abbottabad where Bin Laden was living.

    Contrary to statements released by Pakistani intelligence agencies denying any knowledge of the occupants of the Abbottabad compound raided by American Special Forces units on May 1, there is evidence that the occupants of the compound housing Osama bin Laden were well known to Pakistani intelligence from the time the purpose-built compound was finished and occupied in 2005.

    An official from Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) told the BBC that the compound was raided by the ISI while still under construction in 2003 when the agency believed senior al-Qaeda operative Abu Faraj al-Libi was on site. Since then, however, the official claimed the intelligence agency had taken no interest in the facility: “The compound was not on our radar; it is an embarrassment for the ISI… We’re good, but we’re not God” (BBC, May 3). However, in a statement that appeared to reveal the confusion over the incident at the highest levels of the Pakistani government, an official from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs claimed that the ISI “had been sharing information [on the compound] with the CIA and other friendly intelligence agencies since 2009” (The News [Islamabad], May 4).

    The house in the garrison city of Abbottabad where Osama bin Laden apparently lived for several years before he was killed was the focus of neighbors’ attention for several reasons. The most important reason was its size. The house was many times bigger than most houses in the neighborhood and its reclusive occupants also appeared to have money to throw around. If the balls of children playing in the streets accidently landed in the compound, the children were given Rs 50 by the occupants of the house. [1] Several children told Pakistani TV channels that they had started throwing their balls into the compound on purpose. They were never refused the money (Geo TV, May 3).

    However, there were also reasons for the people in the neighborhood not to suspect that this house was the residence of the most wanted terrorist in the world. The house had 12 to 16 foot high boundary walls surmounted by electrified barbed wire. There were surveillance cameras fixed on the walls. The human security around the compound created the impression that it was a secret military or intelligence facility, something the people living in garrison towns are quite used to. A neighbor explained the local lack of interest in the unusual building by saying, “Once you know a particular building belongs to the military or an intelligence agency or any law-enforcement department in Pakistan, you stop taking interest in the unusualness of the building or the activities there.” [2] The neighbors’ conclusion that it belonged to some security agency seems to have put any worries at rest.

    The compound became the focus of attention soon after construction on the building started sometime in the fall of 2004. The haste with which it was built also surprised the neighbors: “The pace of construction of this house was one of the topics in our discussion with our families and with friends. We used to say either the owner is fairly rich or it is going to be a military facility, which is not uncommon in this garrison city.” [3] In a TV interview after his interrogation by the security agencies, Noor Mohammad, the contractor who built the house, said that the house was built in one and a half years (Geo TV, May 4). However, most of the neighbors’ accounts put the construction period between nine and 12 months. Mohammad noted that, unlike the usual back-and-forth negotiations between contractor and owner at various stages of construction that are typical of the residential construction process in Pakistan, the owners of the Abbottabad house never disputed costs and met all requests for additional funds promptly and without question. He also said that the construction work continued uninterrupted, which suggests some urgency. According to another contractor, it is quite possible to construct such a house in six months if the work is conducted without interruption. [4]

    When the house was completed its residents moved in quickly: “Nobody knew when exactly they moved in. They probably moved in the middle of night when all of us were sleeping. The furniture and other stuff were brought in during the day, possibly before they moved in. It took some time before the neighbors realized that there were people living in that house.” [5] The few guests to the house typically arrived in the darkness and were rarely seen by the neighbors.

    In a country where neighbors have strong ties and very often visit each other, the occupants of the new house discouraged their neighbors from visiting. “My wife tried to establish contacts with the women in that house more than once but was rebuffed. It was the only house in the neighborhood whose female occupants were not known to the other female [residents of the neighborhood]. I had concluded that some nuclear scientist was living there. Some of the nuclear scientists’ families are also reclusive.” [6] Interestingly, no neighbor seems to have seen another family visiting the Bin Laden family.

    The neighbors’ accounts contradict official claims that the house was not on the radar of the intelligence agencies. According to several of these witnesses, the house was under continuous and heavy surveillance by the Pakistani intelligence agencies. A local resident observed: “The compound was continuously under the watch of agents of the intelligence and security agencies. They always looked suspiciously at every unusual interest in that compound by our guests. I always had the impression that it was some sort of an intelligence facility.” [7] However, no neighbor ever saw any uniformed personnel visiting the compound. According to a local journalist, it is unlikely that any of the security agents deputed to carry out human surveillance on the compound would have been given any inkling of who was living there. [8] However, it seems clear those directing the surveillance were aware of the identity of the suspects under watch in the compound, indicating that the residents were under the protection of a Pakistani intelligence agency since occupation began.

    Notes:

    1. Approximately 62 cents, a substantial sum for children in Pakistan.
    2. Interview by a research assistant of a neighbor, Abbottabad, May 2.
    3. Interview by a research assistant of a neighbor, Abbottabad, May 2.
    4. Interview by a research assistant of a local contractor, Abbottabad, May 4.
    5. Interview by a research assistant of a shopkeeper, Abbottabad, May 2.
    6. Interview by a research assistant of a neighbor, Abbottabad, May 2.
    7. Interview by a research assistant of a neighbor, Abbottabad, May 2.
    8. Author’s telephone interview with a local journalist, May 3.

    http://www.jamestown.org/programs/gta/single/?tx_ttnews%5Btt_news%5D=37885&cHash=b542675e7d70bff627f297b7e40cd71f

  • Pakistan army knew about operation against Osama bin Laden

    Published on GlobalPost (http://www.globalpost.com)
    By Aamir Latif

    Aamir Latif [2]May 5, 2011 14:08

    ISLAMABAD, Pakistan — Pakistani officials have told GlobalPost that the Pakistani army had full knowledge of the U.S. raid that led to the death of Osama bin Laden and that it played a larger role in the operation than previously acknowledged.

    The statements run counter to the public position taken by officials in both Pakistan and the United States who have so far downplayed the role Pakistan’s military and intelligence community had in the attack, saying that it was limited to a small amount of information sharing.
    One senior military official, who asked not to be named because he is not permitted to speak to the press, said that Pakistani army troops were in fact providing backup support when the United States began its operations inside the compound where bin Laden had been staying, including sealing off the neighborhood where the compound was located.

    Officials interviewed scoffed at the idea that Pakistan could have been unaware of the American operation.
    “It’s a no-fly zone,” said a Pakistani intelligence official, referring to the area around bin Laden’s mansion and the nearby military compound. “It is impossible for U.S. helicopters to fly over there without our knowledge and permission.”

    A Pakistan Air Force official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, rejected reports that U.S. special forces had jammed Pakistan’s radar system in order to circumvent the no-fly zone.

    “This is totally untrue. Neither our radars were jammed nor was any scrambling of any air force plane recorded,” the official said, referring to the practice of launching aircraft in the event that the airspace has been breached. Some observers said the helicopters may have been equipped with stealth technology [3], but that has not been confirmed.

    Residents in the area confirmed that the Pakistan army appeared to have at least some knowledge of the operation well before it began. Several residents said that two hours before the United States launched its attack, Pakistani army personnel ordered them to switch off their lights inside and outside their homes and remain indoors until further notice.

    “The army personnel cordoned off the entire area long before we heard the sounds of helicopters hovering over the area,” said Zulfikar Ahmed, who lives in the Abbottabad neighborhood of Bilal Town, where bin Laden’s compound is located. Locals interviewed by the BBC and several other local and international media outlets made similar statements [4].

    Several meetings leading up to the attack, when viewed in sum, also indicate that Pakistan might have known of the operation beforehand.

    “Gen. David Petraeus paid an extraordinary visit to Islamabad on April 25,” said a senior military official. The official said Petraeus held a one-on-one meeting with Gen. Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, Pakistan’s army chief of staff, in which they discussed the details of the operation.

    The next day, Pakistan’s top military body — the Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee — held its quarterly session, which was attended by Lt. Gen. Ahmed Shuja Pasha, the country’s intelligence chief, who is not a regular member of the body. Pasha had visited the United States to meet with the head of the Central Intelligence Agency, Leon Panetta, on April 11.

    Analysts in Pakistan said that the Pakistani government likely wanted to hide its role in the operation to avoid a backlash from the public, which has grown increasingly impatient with the United States and the growing presence of the Central Intelligence Agency inside their country.
    But now international pressure is growing on the military to answer not only for its lack of support in the raid but also for not knowing about bin Laden’s hideout, which was located close to the Pakistan Military Academy. Some in the military — which has long been one of the more respected institutions in the country — are looking to correct the record.

    U.S. President Barack Obama has sought to diffuse the tension since the raid took place, calling Pakistan an important ally and highlighting the intelligence sharing between the two countries that helped lead the United States to bin Laden’s compound.

    In his speech on Sunday announcing bin Laden’s death, Obama recognized Pakistan’s cooperation.

    “It’s important to note that our counterterrorism cooperation with Pakistan helped lead us to bin Laden and the compound where he was hiding,” the president said.
    When contacted by GlobalPost about this latest information, the White House press office said all details about the operation have already been released.
    White House spokesman Jay Carney on Wednesday said the United States’ relationship with Pakistan was “complicated,” but that it was important to maintain [5].

    “The fight is not done, and we look forward to cooperating with Pakistan in the future,” he said at a White House press briefing. “As others have said, more terrorists have been killed on Pakistani soil than probably any other country. And the cooperation we’ve received from Pakistan has been very useful in that regard.”

    The European Union on Thursday also came to the defense of Pakistan, calling the country an “important partner,” echoing similar statements from officials at NATO that were made on Wednesday.

    Experts and analysts here in Islamabad said that the Pakistani government itself, which is concerned about appearing overly friendly with the United States and angering its citizens, is likely encouraging the United States to downplay Pakistan’s involvement in finding bin Laden and the eventual operation against him.

    In fact, analysts said, the Pakistani government has long been trying to compose a storyline that it is actively working against the United States — an effort that is aimed at keeping the country’s population from rising up against the political leadership. Pakistanis have grown tired of U.S. involvement in its affairs in the last decade and ongoing drone attacks in its northern tribal belt that have killed numerous civilians.

    Pakistani Foreign Minister Salman Bashir, for example, told reporters Thursday that the Pakistani military first learned about the operation when a U.S. helicopter crashed at the start of the attack.

    “Pakistan’s civilian and military leadership does not want to be the center of hatred, not only within Pakistan … but also in the Arab world,” where it believes elements of the population still support bin Laden, said Najam Sethi, a political analyst in Pakistan.

    But many here said this strategy could, in the end, hurt the country by making it appear more culpable than it actually is — a reality that is already beginning to take shape as the American media, and some members of Congress, asks why Pakistan hasn’t been more helpful.
    In the wake of all of the criticism, some here are now calling on Pakistan’s leaders to be more forthcoming about their cooperation with the United States, especially in regard to Sunday’s raid.

    “If Pakistan or U.S. officials do not publicize the cooperation between the two sides in the operation against bin Laden, Pakistan will be in serious trouble on the diplomatic front,” Sethi said.

    Salim Safi, a security analyst based in Peshawar, said it seemed clear that there had been a significant amount of cooperation between the two sides — a reality that should be made public, even if Pakistani officials think it might hurt them politically in the short-term.
    “The Pakistani government and the military establishment must not hide the facts from their own people,” he said. “They must come forward with the truth.”

    Source URL (retrieved on 2011-05-06 16:26): http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/asia-pacific/pakistan/110505/pakistan-army-osama-bin-laden-dead
    Links:
[1] http://www.globalpost.com/news/regions/asia-pacific/pakistan
%5B2%5D http://www.globalpost.com/bio/aamir-latif/articles
%5B3%5D http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/war/military/110505/osama-bin-laden-stealth-black-hawk-helicopter-navy-seal-video
%5B4%5D http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-south-asia-13268517
%5B5%5D http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2011/05/04/press-briefing-press-secretary-jay-carney-542011
%5B6%5D http://www.globalpost.com/section/osama-bin-laden
%5B7%5D http://www.globalpost.com/news/war/military

  • Osama bin Laden mission agreed in secret 10 years ago by US and Pakistan

    US forces were given permission to conduct unilateral raid inside Pakistan if they knew where Bin Laden was hiding, officials say

    Declan Walsh in Islamabad
    guardian.co.uk, Monday 9 May 2011 19.06 BST
    Article history

    The deal was struck between Pervez Musharraf and George Bush in 2001 and renewed during the ‘transition to democracy’ – a six-month period from February 2008 when Musharraf was still president but a civilian government had been elected. Photograph: Joshua Roberts/Reuters
    The US and Pakistan struck a secret deal almost a decade ago permitting a US operation against Osama bin Laden on Pakistani soil similar to last week’s raid that killed the al-Qaida leader, the Guardian has learned.

    The deal was struck between the military leader General Pervez Musharraf and President George Bush after Bin Laden escaped US forces in the mountains of Tora Bora in late 2001, according to serving and retired Pakistani and US officials.

    Under its terms, Pakistan would allow US forces to conduct a unilateral raid inside Pakistan in search of Bin Laden, his deputy, Ayman al-Zawahiri, and the al-Qaida No3. Afterwards, both sides agreed, Pakistan would vociferously protest the incursion.

    “There was an agreement between Bush and Musharraf that if we knew where Osama was, we were going to come and get him,” said a former senior US official with knowledge of counterterrorism operations. “The Pakistanis would put up a hue and cry, but they wouldn’t stop us.”

    The deal puts a new complexion on the political storm triggered by Bin Laden’s death in Abbottabad, 35 miles north of Islamabad, where a team of US navy Seals assaulted his safe house in the early hours of 2 May.

    Pakistani officials have insisted they knew nothing of the raid, with military and civilian leaders issuing a strong rebuke to the US. If the US conducts another such assault, Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani warned parliament on Monday, “Pakistan reserves the right to retaliate with full force.”

    Days earlier, Musharraf, now running an opposition party from exile in London, emerged as one of the most vocal critics of the raid, terming it a “violation of the sovereignty of Pakistan”.

    But under the terms of the secret deal, while Pakistanis may not have been informed of the assault, they had agreed to it in principle.

    A senior Pakistani official said it had been struck under Musharraf and renewed by the army during the “transition to democracy” – a six-month period from February 2008 when Musharraf was still president but a civilian government had been elected.

    Referring to the assault on Bin Laden’s Abbottabad compound, the official added: “As far as our American friends are concerned, they have just implemented the agreement.”

    The former US official said the Pakistani protests of the past week were the “public face” of the deal. “We knew they would deny this stuff.”

    The agreement is consistent with Pakistan’s unspoken policy towards CIA drone strikes in the tribal belt, which was revealed by the WikiLeaks US embassy cables last November. In August 2008, Gilani reportedly told a US official: “I don’t care if they do it, as long as they get the right people. We’ll protest in the National Assembly and then ignore it.”

    As drone strikes have escalated in the tribal belt over the past year, senior civilian and military officials issued pro forma denunciations even as it became clear the Pakistani military was co-operating with the covert programme.

    The former US official said that impetus for the co-operation, much like the Bin Laden deal, was driven by the US. “It didn’t come from Musharraf’s desire. On the Predators, we made it very clear to them that if they weren’t going to prosecute these targets, we were, and there was nothing they could do to stop us taking unilateral action.

    “We told them, over and again: ‘We’ll stop the Predators if you take these targets out yourselves.'”

    Despite several attempts to contact his London office, the Guardian has been unable to obtain comment from Musharraf.

    Since Bin Laden’s death, Pakistan has come under intense US scrutiny, including accusations that elements within Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence helped hide the al-Qaida leader.

    On Sunday, President Barack Obama said Bin Laden must have had “some sort of support network” inside Pakistan.

    “We don’t know whether there might have been some people inside of government, outside of government, and that’s something we have to investigate,” Obama said.

    Gilani has stood firmly by the ISI, describing it as a “national asset”, and said claims that Pakistan was “in cahoots” with al-Qaida were “disingenuous”.

    “Allegations of complicity or incompetence are absurd,” he said. “We didn’t invite Osama bin Laden to Pakistan.”

    Gilani said the army had launched an investigation into how Bin Laden managed to hide inside Pakistan. Senior generals will give a briefing on the furore to parliament next Friday.

    Gilani paid lip-service to the alliance with America and welcomed a forthcoming visit from the US secretary of state, Hillary Clinton, but pointedly paid tribute to help from China, whom he described as “a source of inspiration for the people of Pakistan”.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/may/09/osama-bin-laden-us-pakistan-deal

    ………..

    Secret Pakistani Deal with US on Bin Laden

    Posted on 05/10/2011 by Juan
    It turns out that when President Obama ordered the Navy SEALs to get Usama Bin Laden in Abbotabad, he did not infringe against Pakistani sovereignty after all. Rather, he was acting in accordance with a longstanding secret agreement between Washington and Islamabad, according to The Guardian. The agreement even stipulated that the Pakistani government would be constrained by public opinion to condemn the US action in the aftermath, however insincere the rebuke might be.

    Those who are unnecessarily worrying that Obama’s raid was lawless or set a precedent can rest easy; the only precedent is not military, but rather for back-room deals among governments who then put on public Kabuki plays.

    The shadowy agreement explains why Prime Minister Gilani gave such a tepid speech on the whole affair. He demanded no apology from the United States, appointed no commission of inquiry, and did not seem unduly alarmed (because he was not). He said that Bin Laden’s demise greatly benefited Pakistan, on which, he said, Bin Laden had declared war. Gilani, a relatively secular politician from a prominent Sufi family of Multan, was no doubt delighted to have Bin Laden out of the way. He did push back against suggestions that the Pakistani military knowingly harbored Bin Laden, though he admitted that the terrorist’s residence in Abbottabad was an embarrassment. Maybe not as big an embarrassment, he archly suggested, as invading a whole country such as Iraq on the basis of mistaken intelligence about WMD. But an embarrassment nevertheless.

    Aljazeera reported on the speech, but went to press before the Guardian’s revelation.

    The Guardian reports that a decade ago, then Pakistani dictator Gen. Pervez Musharraf made a deal with Washington acknowledging that US troops could come into Pakistan to strike at top al-Qaeda leaders whenever they liked. Aware that any such incursion would be unpopular, Musharraf warned his new American patrons that the Government of Pakistan would likely condemn it in public so as to assuage the population. The agreement was reaffirmed during the transition to civilian, parliamentary rule, in spring-summer of 2008, according to The Guardian

    In August of 2008, as the civilian government was about to take over from Gen. Musharraf, US officials met with Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani . He pledged to them that the Pakistani military would prosecute to the end its then campaign in Bajaur against the Pakistani Taliban. The US embassy reported back to Washington,

    ‘ [Interior Minister Rehman] Malik suggested we hold off alleged Predator attacks until after the Bajaur operation. The PM brushed aside Rehman’s remarks and said ‘I don’t care if they do it as long as they get the right people. We’ll protest in the National Assembly and then ignore it.’

    Bush & Gilani

    Other cables confirm that it has been routine for US special operations forces to work in tandem with their Pakistani peers on Pakistani soil, with the secret concurrence of Chief of Staff Gen. Ashfaq Kayani.

    Not only was Gilani merely going through the motions in Monday’s speech, but so was virtually the entire country. In the last couple of years, al-Qaeda’s favorability rating in Pakistan has fluctuated between 9% and 18%. I would argue that in any society, at least 10% of the people who answer polls are looney toons or have very strange politics, so in reality almost no reasonable Pakistanis thought much of Bin Laden. There have been no massive demonstrations in the wake of his killing. In June of 2007, 50,000 people are said to have come out in Lahore to demand the reinstatement of the supreme court justice who had been dismissed by the military dictator, Musharraf. They were offended by an attack on the rule of law by a general. So we know what gets Pakistanis exercised. The small scattered demonstrations against Bin Laden’s death in Pakistan during the past week, mostly by members of the minority fundamentalist party (the Jama’at-i Islami) have been a posthumous humiliation for him.

    Since nearly 60 percent of Pakistanis think the US is their enemy, whatever passion the raid on Bin Laden elicited had far more to do with defense of the nation’s borders than with any admiration for al-Qaeda terrorism. Of course, 64% of Pakistanis say want better relations with the US, which has to raise questions about what they mean by that ‘enemy’ crack.

    The raid on Abbotabad reopened recent wounds for many Pakistanis. This spring has been dominated by the scandal of CIA operative Raymond Davis, who shot two men in broad daylight in downtown Lahore last January, then got himself arrested while he was taking photographs of the corpses and inventorying their private effects. An extraction team from the US embassy ran over another Pakistani with their van in their haste to reach the scene, and anyway arrived too late to prevent the arrest. Davis was finally released when the US allegedly paid $2.4 million in blood money (diya) to family members, who under Islamic law have the prerogative of not pressing charges if they are satisfied with the diya offered.

    Please don’t tell the Oklahoma state legislature, which recently attempted to outlaw resort to any element of Islamic law.

    The Davis saga played to Pakistani fears of having been infiltrated by masses of Blackwater/ Xe operatives, anxieties stoked by the big US military footprint in the area as a result of the Afghanistan war next door. On the other hand, the polarization might be lessening. Few Pakistanis any longer admire those violent Pashtuns of southern Afghanistan who struggle against US and NATO troops

    It was in a post-Davis Pakistan that the mission against Bin Laden took place. Luckily, most Pakistanis had no use for al-Qaeda, and so public anger hardly boiled over at his death. Urban middle class people even welcomed it, because they feel that al-Qaeda has made their lives insecure with its domestic bombings and has smeared them with the tag of terrorist when they travel to the west.

    Ultimately, the key to the erratic behavior of the Pakistani government toward the US and its interests lies in a basic contradiction. The Pakistani elite is wedded to the $3 billion in aid that the US donated to them in 2010. That elite is also allied with the US against some of the Taliban factions. On the other hand, the Pakistani officer corps sees Afghanistan as their sphere of influence, and refuses to cede it to the US. Elements of the Inter-Services Intelligence seem to be allied with Jalaluddin Haqqani and his network, which fights the US and Karzai in Afghanistan and is based in North Waziristan.

    These contradictions make it tough for the Pakistani political class to save face. But that is what Gilani and others were trying to do in his recent speech.

    http://www.juancole.com/2011/05/secret-pakistani-deal-with-us-on-bin-laden.html

  • If I ever catch the author of this article I will kill you. You are being payed by the US embassy.IF RD WAS SENT TO CATCH BIN LADEN WHY WAS HE KILLING 2 BOYS IN LAHORE ? TAKING PHOTOS OF DEFENCE AREAS ?
    pakistan caught ppl like Khalid shiek mohammed, it could catch bin laden if american shared intel.
    Bin Laden planned many attacks on mariot hotel,army HQ why would we hide him

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