India-Pakistan: Secret Pleasures Revealed


September 28, 2009: India believes that the Pakistani government has still not gained complete control over Islamic radical elements in its intelligence (ISI) and security forces. As evidence, India points to ten new terrorist camps that have been allowed in Pakistan in the last year, bringing the total to 62. Most of the new ones are near the Indian border. Hatred of, and violence towards India remains popular in Pakistan, despite the more immediate threat from Islamic radical groups like the Taliban and al Qaeda. Many Pakistani government officials still support the use of terrorism against India, especially in Kashmir. Thus while the senior-most Pakistani officials talk peace, many junior officials make war on India. The Pakistanis have removed some of these Islamic radical officials, but hundreds remain, and are considered too much trouble to deal with. Meanwhile, Islamic radicals in the Pakistani army appear to have made a come-back, at least when it comes to violence against India. In the  last year, there has been an increase in incidents where Pakistani troops on the border, fire into India, to provide cover for Islamic terrorists trying to cross the border. The Indian army is incensed at the inability of the Pakistani government to deal with this kind of indiscipline and blatant cooperation with Islamic radical groups. In Indian Kashmir, there are several clashes, with Islamic terrorists, each week, as a result of the increased border crossing attempts.

U.S. investigators believe that a major source of financing for the Pakistani Taliban is pro-terrorist Arabs in the Persian Gulf. While there are some wealthy individuals sending money to the Taliban, there are many more who contribute to Islamic charities, that pass the money on to the terrorist groups. Violence against non-Moslems is still a popular theme in the Islamic world, something the governments of these nations strive to downplay. But taking a look at the local media (especially the stuff published in the local languages) makes this hatred clear. The English language web sites of Pakistani and Arab media are much less hostile to the infidels (non-Moslems). This split personality has long been ignored in the West, but it's one of the major sources of terrorist support.

The U.S. is also angry at Pakistan, believing that Pakistani police and intelligence officials have been moving Taliban leaders to Karachi (the largest city in Pakistan, where many Pushtun tribesmen live). There, the police are told to stay away from Pushtun neighborhoods where the terrorist leaders are living. Taliban leaders are also being moved into Baluchistan (southwest Pakistan), an area where, by mutual agreement, U.S. UAVs have not often attacked terrorists. The U.S. says it will start hunting terrorists in Baluchistan more aggressively, because Pakistani officials are helping Taliban flee to that area.

The Pakistani government has put rewards, of up to $60,000, on the heads of the five top Taliban leaders in the Swat Valley. Most of the civilians, who had fled, have returned to Swat. But there are still hundreds of armed Taliban in the valley, all trying to hide and prepare for a comeback. In support of this, the Taliban has increased their assassination attempts against anti-Taliban tribal leaders. This has caused the kind of split, among pro-terrorist tribes, that caused the collapse of Islamic terrorist power in Iraq. The same thing is happening in Pakistan, at least in the tribal territories.

The Pakistani army is still skirmishing with Taliban gunmen in Swat and Waziristan. The tribes want the roads unblocked before Winter sets in, and are willing to fight against the Taliban, if that's what it takes. This violence has killed about a hundred so far this month, less than a third the death toll across the border in Afghanistan (where Western troops have been more aggressive than the Pakistanis).

India is getting more concerned with China, especially since its diplomats there noticed that the government controlled mass media has replaced the United States with India, as the designated "main enemy" of China.

The Indian government has massed over 20,000 police and soldiers for a major offensive against Maoist rebels in Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand states. The government has had a more difficult time getting the army to release more of its Special Forces battalions for the anti-Maoist effort. The army insists that these units are essential for anti-terrorist operations, not chasing communist rebels through the jungles of eastern India.  The government has been criticized, for years, of mismanaging anti-Maoist efforts. Police and troops have not been allocated properly, and efforts to deal with the social and economic problems have been half-hearted and ineffective. All this has allowed the Maoists to survive, and often thrive, in the rural areas.

In southeastern Bangladesh, police arrested five Islamic terrorists, and seized bomb making materials.

September 26, 2009: Two suicide car bombers attacked in Pakistan's tribal territories (Peshawar), killing about two dozen and wounding over 200. One target was a police station, as the Taliban attempt to shake government control of Peshawar, the largest city in the territories. Such efforts have not been successful, and have turned more people against the pro-Taliban tribesmen. This anti-Taliban attitude helped clear the Taliban out of the Swat Valley, and has turned most of the Mehsud tribe against the Taliban. For years, the Mehsud tribe has been the core support of the Taliban in Pakistan. But many Mehsud make their living driving trucks that carry cargo in and out of Afghanistan. Taliban violence against this lucrative trade has split the tribe. Taliban violence against schools (which most Mehsud back) has also caused internal divisions. It is believed that most of the Mehsud no longer back the Taliban, and this has caused more violence within the tribe. There is now a tribal council that is anti-Taliban and negotiating a peace deal with the government.

September 24, 2009: In Pakistan's tribal territories, Taliban gunmen ambushed and killed four anti-Taliban tribal leaders. Two other anti-Taliban tribal leaders were killed in the Swat Valley. At the same time, a U.S. UAV fired missiles into a Taliban compound, killing at least a dozen terrorists. All the dead were believed to be Afghans, including a Taliban leader.

September 22, 2009: Outside Peshawar, the largest city in Pakistan's tribal territories, the Taliban blew up another school, because it taught girls as well as boys. In the last two years, the Taliban have destroyed over 200 schools in the tribal territories. The Taliban violence has left over 2,000 dead.




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