Original Articles

A comment on Bruce Riedel’s proposed accountability of Pakistan army

Related posts: Appeal to international community: Impose travel restrictions on all senior officers of Pakistan army

The world may help Pakistan through United Nations Monitoring, Verification and Inspection Commission on Pakistan (UNMOVICP)

Urgent Petition: Stop Pakistan Army’s Crimes against Humanity

In principle, we support any policy initiative which distinguishes Pakistan’s ruling elite (military establishment, their right wing proxies and fake liberal apologists) from the ordinary people of Pakistan. However, it is important to note that India-centric dimension is only one element of Pakistan army’s strategic agenda. Perhaps more injurious not only to the South Asian region and the world at large but also to the people of Pakistan is the Saudi-Ikhwan agenda of a global jihad, a global Salafi aka Wahhabi revolution.

This revolution is currently being implemented in Pakistan and Afghanistan through local radicalised Deobandis (e.g., JUI, SSP, TTP, LeJ) and Wahhabis (e.g. LeT, JuD) and in Egypt and Libya through local radicalised Wahhabis and Ikhwan network. The Saudi-Ikhwan network is known to have a petro-dollar rich, influential lobby in Washington, D.C., the same lobby which successfully misled the USA to wage an Islamic Salafi Jihad against Soviet Union (instead of a straightforward nationalist struggle for freedom), and which is currently using its political, ideological and financial influence to consolidate the Salafi Empire in Afghanistan (through sinister talks with the Haqqani network and Taliban), Yemen (by backing Ali Abdullah Saleh), Libya and Egypt (by successfully hijacking the pro-democracy movement in the respective country via the Wahhabi-AlQaeda-Ikhwan operatives) and by crushing the pro-democracy movement in Bahrain as well as in Saudi Arabia (e.g., in Riyadh and Qatif).

Of course it is not Pakistan’s civilian leaders (who are routinely killed and/or persecuted by Pakistan’s military establishment and its footsoldiers and affiliates), but army generals who are responsible for the Salafi-Deobandi Jihadi mess in Pakistan and the region. The generals who run Pakistani state tolerate and nurture terrorists at home, seek a Taliban victory in Afghanistan and are building the world’s fastest-growing nuclear arsenal. They have sidelined, killed and intimidated civilian leaders elected in 2008. We therefore support Bruce Riedel’s idea of a policy of containment, i.e., a focused hostility aimed not at hurting Pakistan’s people but at holding its army and intelligence agencies accountable.

In Reidel’s words:

As Adm. Mike Mullen, then the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told a Senate committee last month, Pakistan provides critical sanctuary and support to the Afghan insurgency that we are trying to suppress. Taliban leaders meet under Pakistani protection even as we try to capture or kill them.

We must contain the Pakistani Army’s ambitions until real civilian rule returns and Pakistanis set a new direction for their foreign policy….The generals who run Pakistan have not abandoned their obsession with challengingIndia. They tolerate terrorists at home, seek a Taliban victory in Afghanistan and are building the world’s fastest-growing nuclear arsenal. They have sidelined and intimidated civilian leaders elected in 2008. They seem to think Pakistan is invulnerable, because they control NATO’s supply line from Karachi to Kabul and have nuclear weapons. The generals also think time is on their side — that NATO is doomed to give up in Afghanistan, leaving them free to act as they wish there. So they have concluded that the sooner America leaves, the better it will be for Pakistan. They want Americans and Europeans to believe the war is hopeless, so they encourage the Taliban and other militant groups to speed the withdrawal with spectacular attacks, like the Sept. 13 raid on the United States Embassy in Kabul, which killed 16 Afghan police officers and civilians.

It is time to move to a policy of containment, which would mean a more hostile relationship. But it should be a focused hostility, aimed not at hurting Pakistan’s people but at holding its army and intelligence branches accountable. When we learn that an officer from Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence, or ISI, is aiding terrorism, whether in Afghanistan or India, we should put him on wanted lists, sanction him at the United Nations and, if he is dangerous enough, track him down. Putting sanctions on organizations in Pakistan has not worked in the past, but sanctioning individuals has — as the nuclear proliferator Abdul Qadeer Khan could attest.

We hope that international bodies, European Union and United Nations in particular, will pay serious attention to this proposal and act without late to save innocent Pashtuns, Balochs, Hazaras, Shia Muslims, Ahmadi Muslims, Christians and other minority groups from the ongoing massacres and persecution conducted by Pakistan army, which are routinely ignored or misrepresented by army’s (fake) liberal and right wing affiliates in the media and NGOs.

About the author



Click here to post a comment
  • Don’t Trust Musharraf
    Oct 22, 2011 12:00 AM EDT

    With Pakistan in the news following Hillary Clinton’s visit, Bruce Riedel argues that we can’t forget to hold Musharraf accountable for bin Laden.

    Former Pakistani President General Pervez Musharraf should be held accountable for his role in the search for Osama bin Laden who for some three years was hiding within earshot of the country’s premier military academy while Musharraf led the country and its army. Whether clueless (his answer) or complicit about bin Laden’s hideout, Musharraf failed to bring justice to the world’s most-wanted man for years. We should press him for answers about his ineptitude, not look to him for answers about his country’s future.

    Musharraf is regularly hosted by American think tanks and the media and asked his views on his country’s future. This is normal in America. He can’t go home of course because of numerous pending court cases involving his presidency, which ended in disgrace in 2008 after the murder of his rival Benazir Bhutto.

    In 2001, Musharraf promised President George Bush Pakistan’s help in bringing bin Laden and the rest of al Qaeda to justice. Some al Qaeda operatives like Khalid Sheik Mohammed were caught, but the big fish, bin Laden, his deputy Ayman al-Zawahiri, and Taliban leader Mullah Omar, were able to hide out in Pakistan throughout Musharraf’s era. Zawahiri and Omar are still hiding out in Pakistan.

    Sometime in 2005 or 2006 bin Laden moved into a house in Abbottabad. An al Qaeda operative, a Pakistani who had grown up in Kuwait, served as his messenger to the outside world from this hideout. Named for a 19th-century British army officer, Abbottabad is an army town. Three regiments are based there, Pakistan’s first military dictator Ayub Khan was born there and it is home to the Kakul military academy, Pakistan’s West Point.

    David Levenson / Getty Images

    The commandant at Kakul when bin Laden settled into his lair was one of Musharraf’s closest aides, General Nadeem Taj. Taj had accompanied Musharraf on an official visit to Sri Lanka in 1999. On the flight home Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif fired Musharraf as army commander. Taj helped orchestrate the coup that ousted Sharif and put Musharraf in power. Taj, as commandant in Kakul, should have been well informed on all security issues in Abbottabad and keeping his boss in the loop.

    We should also bear in mind Musharraf’s past when he pontificates for think tanks.
    In his chatty memoirs published in 2006, Musharraf says the army was looking for al Qaeda leaders in Abbottabad, so it was on their screen. He has also said he used to jog past the house bin Laden was hiding in.

    In 2007 Musharraf gave up his uniform after the Pakistani people demanded a return to democracy. General Kayani took his place as army chief. Taj became director general of the Inter Services Intelligence directorate (ISI), replacing Kayani and thus had the top intelligence command for the hunt for bin Laden. Within a year, the Bush administration demanded Taj be removed because the ISI was warning al Qaeda terrorists in advance about drone strikes, and had helped the Taliban blow up India’s embassy in Kabul. He was promoted to be a corps commander, one of the dozen or so top generals who run the country. A few weeks later, 10 Pakistani terrorists attacked the city of Mumbai, killing dozens including six Americans. We now know the ISI had helped train them and pick their targets.

    President Obama wisely decided we could not tell Kayani that we had tracked bin Laden to Abbottabad. He could not be trusted. Nor can we trust Musharraf. Americans and Pakistanis have every reason to ask Musharraf and his fellow generals hard questions about what they knew and when they knew it. We should also bear in mind Musharraf’s past when he pontificates for think tanks. Maybe his advice is a bit tarnished.


  • army generals have nothing to do with the terrorist you mention, past support of them was based on doctrine of neccesity , doesnt mean the army shared that view

    this page is run by secular Fascists
    nothing to do with PPP