Category Archive 'Waziristan'

21 Apr 2008

“Walk Warily in Waziristan”

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Captain Francis Stockdale in Waziristan, 1919

The BBC reports that the privately-printed memoir of a British officer deserves wider contemporary circulation, proving that, in that particular inclement corner of the world, little has changed in nearly a century, beyond precisely who it is the locals are sniping at.

In 1919, a young British army officer, Francis Stockdale, was deployed to the Waziristan area of British India.

The title of his book, “Walk Warily in Waziristan” seems no less appropriate now than it did 90 years ago, because today the autonomous Pakistani tribal region of North and South Waziristan is the centre of militancy orchestrated by pro-Taleban and al-Qaeda militants.

It is also an area where many believe the al-Qaeda leader, Osama Bin Laden, may be hiding after the September 2001 World Trade Centre attacks.

It wasn’t until the 1980s that Capt Stockdale’s family published a handful of copies of the book, only a few of which survive. But because or renewed interest in the region, the family in the English county of Norfolk are considering reprinting it.

The book provides a fascinating account of what was regarded then – as it is today – as a thoroughly dangerous area.

One of the main towns close to Waziristan is Tank. Capt Stockdale describes it as being “the worst station in British India”.

“It was known as ‘Hell’s door knocker’ because in the summer the temperature would rise so high that a village nearby rejoiced in the highest temperature in the world – a modest 131 degrees in the shade.

“But it was also an area where hostile tribesman waited, watched and pounced,” he wrote.

“My memories of Tank are characterised by sporadic outbreaks of rifle fire by night and spasmodic outbreaks of cholera during the day. The town fully deserved its poor reputation.”

Capt Stockdale goes on to describe just how dangerous the “hostile tribesmen” were in the Wana, the main town of South Waziristan, when a sniper infiltrated a British camp.

“Like all tribesmen in this area, he was a marvellous shot,” Capt Stockdale wrote, “and he killed the commanding officer with his first shot.

“He killed or wounded 11 other men before his hiding place was discovered.”

Ninety years ago, it seemed that British troops in Waziristan faced the same kind of dangers as Pakistani troops in the region do today.

Read the whole thing.

29 Jul 2007

Pakistan Invades Waziristan Emirate

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The London Times reports that Pakistan has sent in 80,000 troops into the area it previously surrendered to Al Qaeda with orders to root out the Islamist extremists.

map

Pakistan is still refusing to permit US military actions within its borders, and threatening to withdraw from its American alliance if the US were to act unilaterally, the Chinese Xinhua news agency reports.

23 Sep 2006

Osama Dead?

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A French Intelligence leak reveals that the Saudi Intelligence service believes it has good information that Osama bin Laden died on August 23 in a remote location in Pakistan of typhoid fever.

Washington Post story

AP provides an English version of the French story:

L’Est Republicain… the daily newspaper for the Lorraine region in eastern France printed what it described as a confidential document from the French foreign intelligence service DGSE citing an uncorroborated report from Saudi secret services that the leader of the al-Qaida terror network had died.

The contents of the document, dated Sept. 21, or Thursday, were not confirmed by French or other intelligence sources. However, the DGSE transmitted the note to President Jacques Chirac and other officials, the newspaper said.

Defense Minister Michele Alliot-Marie “has demanded an investigation be carried out of this leak,” a ministry statement said, adding that transmission of the confidential document could risk punishment.

Defense Ministry spokesman Jean-Francois Bureau, clarifying the statement, said that the DGSE document exists but that its contents – that bin Laden is allegedly dead – cannot be confirmed.

The DGSE, or Direction Generale des Services Exterieurs, indicated that its information came from a single source.

“According to a reliable source, Saudi security services are now convinced that Osama bin Laden is dead,” said the intelligence report.

There have been periodic reports of bin Laden’s illness or death in recent years but none has been proven accurate.

According to this document, Saudi security services were pursuing further details, notably the place of his burial.

“The chief of al-Qaida was a victim of a severe typhoid crisis while in Pakistan on August 23, 2006,” the document says. His geographic isolation meant that medical assistance was impossible, the French report said, adding that his lower limbs were allegedly paralyzed. On Sept. 4, Saudi security services had their first information on bin Laden’s alleged death, the unconfirmed document reported.

In Pakistan, a senior official of that country’s top spy agency, the ISI or Directorate of Inter-Service Intelligence, said he had no information to confirm bin Laden’s whereabouts or that he might be dead. The official said he believed the report could be fabricated. The official was not authorized to speak publicly on the topic and spoke on condition of anonymity.

U.S. Embassy officials in Pakistan and Afghanistan also said they could not confirm the French report.

Gateway Pundit has a link collection.

Original L’Est Republicain story

15 Sep 2006

Invade and Occupy Pakistan, Do it Now

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The Telegraph reports that the consequences of the Waziristan surrender by the Musharraf regime is far worse than previously known. Pakistan is releasing thousands of terrorists, including most likely the murderers of Daniel Pearl.

Pakistan’s credibility as a leading ally in the war on terrorism was called into question last night when it emerged that President Pervez Musharraf’s government had authorised the release from jail of thousands of Taliban fighters caught fighting coalition forces in Afghanistan.

Five years after American-led coalition forces overthrew the Taliban during Operation Enduring Freedom, United States officials have been horrified to discover that thousands of foreign fighters detained by Pakistan after fleeing the battleground in Afghanistan have been quietly released and allowed to return to their home countries.

Pakistani lawyers acting for the militants claim they have freed 2,500 foreigners who were originally held on suspicion of having links to al-Qa’eda or the Taliban over the past four years.

The mass release of the prisoners has provoked a stern rebuke to the Musharraf regime from the American government. “We have repeatedly warned Pakistan over arresting and then releasing suspects,” said a US diplomat in Islamabad. “We are monitoring their response with great concern.”

Bill Roggio counts the cost:

A sample of those released included the following individuals, including the killers of journalist Daniel Pearl:

Ghulam Mustafa: “He was once close to Osama bin Laden, has intimate knowledge of al-Qaeda’s logistics and financing and its nexus with the military in Pakistan.”

Maulana Sufi Mohammad: “Maulana Sufi Mohammad was Faqir Mohammed’s first jihadi mentor who introduced him to militancy in Afghanistan in 1993. Sufi Mohammad was one of the active leaders of Jamat-e-Islami (JI) in the 1980s. He was the principal of the JI madrassa in Tamaergra, a town in the northwestern part of NWFP. He was an instinctive hardliner and in due course developed differences with JI and left them in 1992 to form Tehrik-e-Nifaz-e-Shariat-e-Mohammed [TNSM].” Sufi Mohammad organized Pakistanis to fight jihad in Afghanistan and along with the TNSM fought in Kunduz November of 2001.

Mohammad Khaled: A brigade leader who led the Taliban in against U.S. forces in Afghanistan. “”It is a difficult time for Islam and Muslims. We are in a test. Everybody should be ready to pass the test – and to sacrifice our lives,” said Mohammad Khaled.

Fazl-e-Raziq: A senior aide to Osama bin Laden, and “an ethnic Pakhtoon resident of Swabi district of the North West Frontier Province.”

Khairullah Kherkhawa: The former Taliban governor of Herat.

Khalid Khawaja: “Khalid Khawaja is a retired squadron leader of the Pakistan Air Force who was an official in Pakistan’s intelligence agency, the ISI, in the mid 1980s. After he wrote a critical letter to General Zia ul-Haq, who ruled Pakistan from 1977 till 1988, in which he labeled Zia as hypocrite, he was removed from the ISI and forced to retire from the airforce. He then went straight to Afghanistan in 1987 and fought against the Soviets along side with Osama Bin Laden, developing a relationship of firm friendship and trust. Khalid Khawaja’s name resurfaced when US reporter Daniel Pearl was abducted and subsequently killed. Pearl had come to Pakistan and met Khalid Khawaja in order to investigate the jihadi network of revered sufi, Syed Mubarak Ali Gailani.”

Mansour Hasnain: A member of the group that kidnapped and murdered Danny Pearl. He also was “a militant of the Harkat-al-Mujahedin group, is one of those who hijacked an Indian Airlines jet in December 1999 and forced New Delhi to release three militants — including Omar and Azhar.”

Mohammad Hashim Qadeer: “Suspected of being one of [Daniel] Pearl’s actual killers, was arrested in August 2005 and has notable al-Qaida links” and “ties with the banned extremist groups Harkat-ul-Mujahedeen and Jaish-e-Muhammad.”

Mohammad Bashir: Another Pakistani complicit in the murder of Daniel Pearl.

Aamni Ahmad, Hala Ahmad and Nooran Abdu: Facilitators/couriers, and wives of al-Qaeda members. “Pakistani authorities arrested 23 Arabs, including two children, suspected of links to Osama bin Laden, officials said Wednesday. All of them sneaked into the country from Afghanistan in recent weeks. The suspects include three women, identified as Aamni Ahmad, Hala Ahmad and Nooran Abdu, who are believed to be relatives of bin Laden. An interior ministry official who spoke on condition of anonymity said the arrests were made in Pakistan’s southwestern Baluchistan province, which borders Afghanistan.”

Gul Ahmed Shami & Hamid Noor: Al-Qaeda foot soldiers who fought in Afghanistan. “I want to be the next Osama bin Laden,” said Shami in 2001. “Allah is with us. The Americans have technology but they don’t have the courage to face death, which we do. I will be there until my death if need be. I know I probably won’t come back,” said Hamid.

But how can anyone realistically expect the administration to act decisively, at the cost of facing even more of the wrath of our domestic treasonous clerisy?

09 Sep 2006

Pakistan’s Waziristan Defeat

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The Washington Post is running an article on Sunday titled Bin Laden Trail ‘Stone Cold’ which sheds light on why Pakistan is withdrawing from Waziristan, and why it is not possible to track terrorist targets in the region.

At least 23 senior anti-Taliban tribesmen have been assassinated in South and North Waziristan since May 2005. “Al-Qaeda footprints were found everywhere,” Interior Minister Sherpao said in a recent interview. “They kidnapped and chopped off heads of at least seven of these pro-government tribesmen.”

Send in the Marines would be my advice. Waziristan is good hunting country.

08 Sep 2006

Why Pakistan Surrendered in Waziristan

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Today’s Wall Street Journal explains why Pakistan’s government found it necessary to make peace with the Taliban and other jihadis in the North-West Frontier Province.

Pakistan’s decision to end a military offensive against Islamic militants in the country’s troubled northwest frontier reflects mounting pressure on President Pervez Musharraf to deal with an even bigger security problem: a growing rebellion in the resource-rich province of Baluchistan.

Political analysts say Gen. Musharraf, boxed in by a pair of increasingly costly conflicts, has been forced to focus on the more important political threat to his government — the Baluch separatist movement — even if it means U.S.-led forces across a porous border in Afghanistan could pay a price for the Pakistani military’s withdrawal from the northwest region of Waziristan.

Under a cease-fire agreement struck this week between tribal chieftains and the military, a three-year government campaign against Islamic militants in Waziristan ended. The military released hundreds of prisoners taken in the rugged tribal area and granted amnesty to others, including some with known links to al Qaeda. Soldiers have vacated advance outposts in the region and relocated to a nearby army camp, according to a senior military official…

One of the brokers of the deal was a retired general now serving as governor of Pakistan’s North West Frontier Province, which includes Waziristan. Gov. Ali Mohammed Jan Orakzai, who comes from a tribal area, argued that the military’s campaign in Waziristan had been counterproductive. “Extremism is more a mind-set,” concurred Pakistan’s senior military spokesman, Gen. Shaukat Sultan. “You don’t open up every mind through use of force.”

In Baluchistan, meanwhile, the military’s drive to put down a separatist rebellion has intensified, sparking violent protests in the region and beyond, which grew after separatist leader Akbar Khan Bugti was killed by security forces late last month. Baluch nationalists have been demanding greater political autonomy from Islamabad and a bigger share of the region’s resources, which include large natural-gas reserves.

Previous posting.

06 Sep 2006

Pakistan Surrenders to the Taliban?

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Bill Roggio‘s coverage points to some very alarming details, not mentioned by the mainstream media.

The “truce” is in fact a surrender. According to an anonymous intelligence source, the terms of the truce includes:

– The Pakistani Army is abandoning its garrisons in North and South Waziristan.
– The Pakistani Military will not operate in North Waziristan, nor will it monitor actions the region.
– Pakistan will turn over weapons and other equipment seized during Pakistani Army operations.
– The Taliban and al-Qaeda have set up a Mujahideen Shura (or council) to administer the agency.
– The truce refers to the region as “The Islamic Emirate of Waziristan.”
– An unknown quantity of money was transferred from Pakistani government coffers to the Taliban. The Pakistani government has essentially paid a tribute or ransom to end the fighting.
– “Foreigners” (a euphemism for al-Qaeda and other foreign jihadis) are allowed to remain in the region.
– Over 130 mid-level al-Qaeda commanders and foot soldiers were released from Pakistani custody.
– The Taliban is required to refrain from violence in Pakistan only; the agreement does not stipulate refraining from violence in Afghanistan.

The truce meeting was essentially an event designed to humiliate the Pakistani government and military. Government negotiators were searched for weapons by Taliban fighters prior to entering the meeting. Heavily armed Taliban were posted as guards around the ceremony. The al Rayah — al-Qaeda’s black flag — was hung over the scoreboard at the soccer stadium where the ceremony was held. After the Pakistani delegation left, al-Qaeda’s black flag was run up the flagpole of military checkpoints and the Taliban began looting the leftover small arms. The Taliban also held a ‘parade’ in the streets of Miranshah. They openly view the ‘truce’ as a victory, and the facts support this view.

While this is not reported in the media, the “Taliban commanders” in attendance include none other than Jalaluddin Haqqani, military commander of the Taliban in Afghanistan, and Tahir Yuldashev, the commander of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan.

Although Pakistan changed its position later, originally

To add insult to the defeat of the Waziristan truce, Pakistan has openly admitted that it would let Osama bin Laden remain a free man if committed to living a peaceful existance in the region. “If he is in Pakistan, bin Laden ‘would not be taken into custody,’ Major General Shaukat Sultan Khan told ABC News in a telephone interview, ‘as long as one is being like a peaceful citizen,” reports ABC News’ The Blotter. An independent intelligence source confirms Maj. Gen. Shaukat Sultan Khan’s position is an accurate reflection of Pakistani policy.

Time to invade a few more Islamic countries.


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