Why choose now to complain about Pakistan’s ISI?

August 1, 2008

Partial solar eclipse in Karachi/Athar HussainWhy now? Until this week, the ISI was an acronym for Pakistan’s powerful spy agency, the Inter-Services Intelligence, that was little known outside of South Asia. Now it’s all over the American media as the organisation accused of secretly helping Islamist militants in  Afghanistan and Pakistan, while the country it works for is a crucial ally in the U.S. battle against al Qaeda and the Taliban.

The New York Times led the charge by reporting that the CIA had confronted Pakistan over what it called deepening ties between members of the ISI and militant groups responsible for a surge in violence in Afghanistan. It followed it up with a story  quoting U.S. government officials blaming the ISI for an attack last month on the Indian embassy in Kabul. The Washington Post and TIME, amongst others, ran similar stories.

File photo of Indian parliamentWhenever you see a deluge of stories in the media quoting government or intelligence officials, it’s always worth asking why those unnamed officials have chosen this particular moment to speak out. The accusations against the ISI — denied by Pakistan — are not new.  

India has complained for years about the role of the ISI in supporting the insurgency in Kashmir. It threatened to go to war in 2001/2002 over a December 2001 attack on the Indian parliament that it blamed on militants backed by the ISI,  a charge denied by Pakistan. The debate within India at the time was very similar to the one you can find today in the U.S. media — how much do the ruling authorities in Pakistan control the ISI, and to what extent is it a monolithic disciplined organisation, and to what extent does it have renegade members who might follow their own agenda?

More importantly, perhaps, in the current context, is how the Americans viewed the ISI.  The U.S. diplomats I knew in India had no illusions about the ISI, although publicly they refused to take sides as they tried – successfully as it turned out — to persuade Islamabad and Delhi to stand down from a conflict that threatened to undermine America’s post 9/11 efforts to tame Afghanistan.

During the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan from 1979 to 1989, the CIA worked closely with the ISI to arm, train and fund the mujahideen. Between them they drove the Russians out of Afghanistan and helped bring down the Soviet Union. There can be no closer relationship between two countries’ spy agencies than that.  The CIA knows, and has long known, the ISI — perhaps better than any other country’s intelligence services.

So I come back to my original question. Why turn on them now?

There are, of course, obvious answers. Pakistan’s new government, elected in February, just made a botched attempt to bring the ISI under civilian control.  Its subsequent retraction served only to highlight the power of the ISI.  The Americans and their allies are suffering heavy losses in Afghanistan, while going into a presidential election where the war in Iraq, and the U.S. failure to hunt down al Qaeda and the Taliban, have become a major issue.

But I can’t help but wonder whether those unnamed officials now so keen to talk to the media are spinning a line.  There have long been arguments within the CIA about how to handle the ISI, with agents based in Kabul generally arguing in favour of confrontation and those in Islamabad backing cooperation.

So is what we are seeing in the U.S. media a reflection of a battle within the CIA over rival views on how to handle Pakistan and the ISI? Maybe.

Or is it a reflection of actual events, including the increase in violence in Afghanistan, the renewed focus on Iraq/al Qaeda created by the U.S. presidential election, the speculation about whether the United States will send its troops into Pakistan to hunt down leaders of al Qaeda and the Taliban, and heightened tensions between India and Pakistan over the attack on the Indian embassy in Kabul? Maybe.

I am not asking these questions in the kind of rhetorical way that suggests that I already know the answer. I’m asking because I don’t know.

April photo of a support holding a poster of Saddam Hussain/Saba al BazeeBut I am just a little bit suspicious when I see the media all heading in the same direction. It feels uncannily similar to the way the media quoted unnamed officials about WMD to justify the invasion of Iraq. Many countries had been suspicious of Saddam Hussein since the invasion of Kuwait in 1990. But having ignored that for years,  there was suddenly a groundswell of opinion to remove him. Are we now seeing a similar groundswell against Pakistan?

Once again, I don’t know the answer, but suggest only that there is a need to ask why people have chosen this moment to talk.  Otherwise we prove the old cliche true, that “we learn from history that we don’t learn from history.”

(A word on comments. I write this blog because I want to hear what people have to say. Many people have posted excellent comments that have moved the debate forward. But please don’t swear and don’t abuse others. And stick to the subject. We’re in the 21st century here so let’s not go back to 1947.)

  

32 comments

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Dear Madam,

Why the focus on the ISI? Could it be because the top US leadership has had enough of Pakistan’s double dealing?

For seven years since 9/11, there has been a debate within the US administration regarding treating Pakistan’s military establishment as an ally or an adversary. Up until it was one-man rule, Gen. Musharraf calculated correctly that he could keep playing a double game as long as he read US signals correctly. Whenever the pressure appeared to intensify, Musharraf would pull an Al Qaeda number three out of his hat.

After Musharraf’s sidelining, a vacuum has been created. Now that the ISI/Army hardliners realized that they do not have to directly answer to US pressure, as was the case under Musharraf, it appears that some in the ISI figured they’ll try pushing the envelope further and further. As is their wont, the Pakistani hardliners miscalculated once again. Remember these are the same geniuses who started the Kargil war and also the general trend to use jihadists as policy tools.

So what does all this mean? It means that the Pakistani military hardliners will either have to read the tea leaves and pull back post haste or they will face more US-backed attempts by civilian Pakistani rulers to bring scrutiny and perhaps even accountability to the ISI.

I’m pretty sure that the first ISI reaction would be appeasement of the US. I expect some “big fish” such as Al Zawahiri to be caught or killed. The overt assistance to Taliban will probably be pulled back. The aggressive actions on the Indian front may see some moderation.

And after a while, things will be back to square one and the new American admin will again resort to the “See no evil, hear no evil” policy with Pakistan.

Posted by Vijay | Report as abusive

Why now? You bring up a good question.

My 2 cents. US(CIA) always knew what ISI is upto because CIA worked closely and had close relationship. In the past ISI was focused on Kashmir and India. But now ISI may be causing problems in Afghanistan and not really listening to US. We all what happens when you don’t listen to US? Unnamed sources in major US news papers will say some things. Any news junkie pretty much knows this trick. That is why I don’t trust some of the major news papers. Linkages.

Posted by kurnool | Report as abusive

Forty years back i bought a book titled “america needs an ideology”. I feel that America needs an ideology just as much today because it’s foreign policy is based on opportunism and not on ideology. This was true when it worked hand in hand with ISI in Pakistan, it was true when it decided to get involved in Iraq war and it is true even today. No country respects USA because it has no principles. USA will support a dictator (Musharaf) and kill another dictator (Saddam) in order to satisfy it’s ego.

Posted by sunny bose | Report as abusive

If US needs to make a serious dent in terrorist related activities & on terrorism worldwide then Pakistan needs to be the centre of focus. US needs to have its agents within Pakistan to direct attcks on terrorists safe havens & direct investments towards setting up modern educational institutions rather than push sales of F-16′s to Pakistan which are not helping anyone’s cause.

Posted by James | Report as abusive

I think the mujhadeen monster created by the CIA/ISI to fight the soviets has now turned back onto its masters. I don’t think there is anyway they can now be controlled by anyone. The US is feeling the pain now and since the Pak-Afghan border has no state control it is trying to put pressure on the ISI to rein in the militants.
But unfortunately i think its too late.
I believe that area – called waziristan – will descend into civil war and may even split from pakistan, bringing anarchy and chaos to the region. Pakistan as we know would change drastically in the next decade as they fight the cancer within.

Posted by Andy | Report as abusive

Lack of statesmanship has been characteristic of American leadership in the last century. Invariably, victory, partial or complete, came their way by the weight of their power.
During the Second World War America ignored Churchill’s iron-curtain warning and saw that become a reality when peace returned.
Ho Chi Minh with earthy sagacity sent America back with the myth of their arms might and commitment to democracy shattered.
It is probably the outcome of the practice of deciding a course of action by drawing inputs from many sources. Principles and values are conspicuous by their absence. Expediency and short term gains become paramount.
Bush and statesmanship are as as afar apart as the sun and the earth. First Powell and then Rice led this novice to believe that military-man Musharaf was their best bet in Pakistan. His track record of betrayal and double speak was, wittingly or unwittingly, ignored.
America lost precious time and money by reposing faith in a dictator.
Americans must continue to bleed in distant, hostile lands because their leaders do not play by principles but are led by faceless academicians and bureaucrats. Present day Presidents lose their nerves on the loss of a few jobs. It was Lincoln’s courage that made him stake half of America for the sake of principles.

Posted by Jitendra | Report as abusive

Indians have old habbit of blaming Pakistan on what every happens in India is done by Pakistan.You have more then 41 seperate movements within your country at the moment so now is a good time to blame them on Pakistan or ISI what better time then this?
If so many things are being done by ISI or Pakistan why cant anyone put forward some evidence?
Have you thought about the indian double dealing while things were easing India kept on sponsering terrorism in both the Balouchistan and NWFP through consulates (money transfer) in Afganistan isnt tht double dealing? I dont see any point in easing the tension on Indian border as they are just buying time (how many issues resolved in 5 years?) and are not in any mood to resolve the outstanding issues,they lack the will.I have reached to one conslusion you will always keep in crying and blaming Pakistan like that.

The western media puts this problem as something which can be solved in just one action,one day these are the same people who were trained,funded and invited in white house by americans,and when objective of becoming the only super power was achieved they were left so whos is to blame for the root cause of the problem?
I dont get this point Americans and Nato have been in Afganistan for around 7 years and they dont have control over 80% of the area so how can they blame Pakistan for not doing enough? What are their achievments? What change have they brought in the life of the people?

Posted by Faraz | Report as abusive

Myra, instead of questioning why the US has spoken up now, I’m not inclined to look a gifthorse in the mouth, but am instead inclined to ask why you’re challenging the need to speak out against ISI. You seem to reduce ISI’s crimes against India as mere accusation-vs-denial. To me, this implies that you prefer to see Indians condemned to endless terror attacks by the ISI. Myra, why do you want to see Indians like me dead, murdered in terrorist attacks?

Posted by Sanjay | Report as abusive

Pakistan has a history of blaming the West for all its problems. The so called “vacuum” created in Afghanistan when U.S. gradually stopped supporting the Mujahideen in the 1980′s has a small part if any to play in the rise of terrorism in Pakistan and Afghanistan. It is the rampant support provided by ISI and other military-political leaders in Pakistan that has fueled the unprecedented rise of extremisn in Afghanistan (in the form of Taliban) and in Pakistan (in the form of terrorist organizations such as Lashkar e Toiba). The acknowledgement from Pakistan of its problems with ISI indicate how serious the matter is. We should not be surprized if the North-West frontier region of Pakistan is dismembered from the rest of the nation in the coming decade.

- Alam

Posted by Muhammad Alam | Report as abusive

Faraz disingenuously questions why US and NATO troops can’t control areas they patrol, when the reality is that Pakistani ISI are arming and coordinating the militants in those areas. Why is it that when the US launches missile attacks against jihadi hideouts and informs Pakistan in advance of this, that the militants mysteriously evade the attacks? This doesn’t happen when the US avoids informing Pakistan in advance. Does Faraz really care about this? No, of course not, as long as the US is enough of a sucker to keep sending money to his country’s economy to keep him employed. Hopefully, the US will wisen up and demand that Pakistan be held accountable for its acts of commission and omission. Sovereignty isn’t a one-way street. If you want your sovereignty respected, then you have to fulfill the obligations of sovereignty, which means taking responsibility for acts of terror emanating from your own soil. If you don’t take responsibility for what’s going on in your soil, then it’s not your soil. If it’s your soil, then it’s your responsibility, and you have to make yourself accountable for it. No accountability, then no sovereignty.

Posted by Sanjay | Report as abusive

Faraz poses an interesting question – what change has been brought into the lives of people? Rhetorical, beyond doubt, but important nevertheless. The problem I see the US facing is too much meddling in south east Asia.
To keep Pakistan cooperating, they’ve nurtured terrorism in the area for years – and Pakistan, with its troubled history has been taking the bait, not realizing (?) that this sort of a policy is going to backfire at some point. Again, as Faraz says, Indians will blame everything on Pakistan – I don’t really see anything wrong with that except that they should get up and do something about it. The fact is that the ISI doesn’t represent the common man of Pakistan – and when Indians blame Pakistan, they don’t mean the common man.
[At this point, it seems I'm spelling out things a little too much but oh well].
At any rate, the bigger problem I see here is that the ISI has close relations with the Taliban and I fear they might be able to hand out more terror attacks to us if they feel too threatened.
The solution that I think would work is not another Bush-like invasion of ISI’s HQs but tactfully disempowering the ISI with the help of the Pakistani Govt. over time. It will take a few years, but put in the effort and it’ll show. I doubt India and Pakistan will be friends in many years to come but we must think about avoiding a south-east asian conflict at any cost because of India’s rising clout internationally – it would merely put us in a very uncomfortable spot.

Posted by paul | Report as abusive

Okay, let’s see what happened to American top class world intelligence agency CIA & NSA.

1-Sleeping while 9-11 attackers were planning and hittting USA. More than 3,000 people are killed but No one got fired after 100% failure of CIA & NSA. Few days after 9-11 RAW (Indian sabotage agency) gave false report to CIA & White House that an hijacked airplane will be crashing into the White House

2- Lied about Iraq’s WMD and ZERO intelligence. And when all failed invaded a sovereign country and systematically killed 1 million Iraqi.

3- CIA & NSA have been lying about Iran’s nuclear program also.

4- CIA started Operation Cannonball with US military in Afghanistan in March of 2008. The whole operation has failed, therefore, Bush Admin has to place a blame on someone and might as well be ISI

5- Indian RAW sabotage agency has been has relationship with Baitullah Mehsud and Balochistan terrorist. They have been supplying them with money and weapons to fight in Pakistan.

6- Afghanistan under the direct occupation of USA and NATO has become Narco-State. CIA in the past in South & Latin America was involved in drug trafficking and it is doing the similar business moving drugs from Afghanistan to USA & Europe.

Don’t blame your failures and stupid mistakes on someone else.

Posted by Saleem Hatoum | Report as abusive

As reported by Maria Ressa of CNN on October 8, 2001, here is Omar Saeed’s connection to that incident:

“The Pakistan-based group, Jaish-e-Mohammad, initially claimed responsibility for the attack. It was formed by Pakistani cleric Maulana Mazood Azhar, shortly after he was released from an Indian prison in 1999. Azhar was one of three jailed Islamic militants freed by Indian authorities in exchange for passengers of the hijacked Indian Airlines 814. Indian and U.S. authorities now see a link between that hijacking and the September 11 attacks in the United States. Freed with Azhar was Ahmed Umar Syed Sheikh [Omar Saeed], whom authorities say used a pseudonym to wire $100,000 to suspected hijacker Mohammad Atta, who then distributed the money in the United States.”

The Times of India broke with this bombshell:

“While the Pakistani Inter Services Public Relations claimed that former ISI [the "Pakistani CIA"] director-general Lt-Gen Mahmud Ahmad sought retirement after being superseded on Monday, the truth is more shocking. Top sources confirmed here on Tuesday that the general lost his job because of the “evidence” India produced to show his links to one of the suicide bombers that wrecked the World Trade Center. The U.S. authorities sought his removal after confirming the fact that $100,000 were wired to WTC hijacker Mohammed Atta from Pakistan by Ahmad Umar Sheikh [Omar Saeed] at the instance of General Mahmud [Ahmad]. Senior government sources have confirmed that India contributed significantly to establishing the link between the money transfer and the role played by the dismissed ISI chief. While they did not provide details, they said that Indian inputs, including [Omar Saeed's] mobile phone number, helped the FBI in tracing and establishing the link.”

Posted by Salauddeen | Report as abusive

I am surprised to see how USA and NATO forces failure is blamed on Pakistan. The fact is that recently ISI headquarter in Lahore, Pak and Rawalpindi, Pak was bombed by extremists. Last year alone there have been more attacks on Pakistan Army while fighting extremist. These are highly protected areas of Pakistan Army. I say who is sponsoring that. If extremist are doing that then how come they organize these kinds of high level attacks on ISI. It must be organized by intelligence agency of some foreign country. Most probably India as its familiar with Pakistan military infrastructures. I wonder why India need consulates on Pakistan border when all the development work by Indian construction work is going on in western cities of Afghanistan. It’s because they are organizing attacks in Pakistanis border areas. They are supporting militancy there to bring instability in Pakistan.

Posted by Raja | Report as abusive

The US has worked with the ISI since 9/11. The reason Americans officials have now launched a campaign against the agency is because of the February 18 elections in Pakistan, which sidelined the anti-terrorist Musharraf and brought in a political government that is ambigious towards terrorism. So the US in response launches these pressure/media campaigns. If the Pakistani govt has learned a thing or two from the past, it should see through this bluff.

Not sure what the intent of the article is? Is it to overlook ISI involvment? America has always been slow to realize who it’s turn enemies are. U cannot win in Afghanisation by ignoring Pakistan. NO PAKISATAN = NO TERRORISM!!

Posted by Allah | Report as abusive

Coz CIA knows well the capability of ISI. CIA has given birth to two intelligence agencies——Mossad of israel & ISI of Pakistan.Both have outgrown in capability & efficacy than CIA.
Americans are in the same situation as were Russians of 1980s. ISIbwith the help of CIA turned the table & created a history in espionage nobody can rival for centuries to come.
CIA knows well that if ISI can outwit Russians they can outwit Americans as well. Actually, Americans have started fearing ISI. Let’s see what a mother (CIA) can do the daughter (ISI). History tells that the new generation takes over the old generation. Anybody can infer according to their imagination…..A billion $ question.
India has its own scores to seetle with Pakistan. They cry foul & join the western bandwagon in the hope that the west will deliver for them. But every nation has its own interests. Indians have to grow up and see the evolving scenario in the global geostrategic positioning. If they think a fragmented Pakistan will help them, wait a minute, they are next on agenda. The eyes are on Asian resources barring question of India & Pakistan. Nobody cares if 3.5 billion Asians are decimated in any conflict. They are just after the resources.

Posted by infoaxis | Report as abusive

infoaxis, your pro-pakistani propaganda belies the fact that no country is going to tolerate terrorism, and that certainly applies to India. There’s no way that India is just going to sit and take Pakistani-sponsored bombing attacks, whether against its embassy in Kabul, or whether the attacks in Ahmedabad and Bangalore. Your hope that India will see it in its interest to align with Pakistan against the United States is laughable. As if Pakistan doesn’t want to dismember India! When you say 3.5 billion Asians, remember that Pakistan doesn’t make up a sizeable chunk of that 3.5 billion, as India does. Next you’ll be claiming that Pakistan and Saudi together have the world’s largest oil supplies. As the sweeper once said, “mine and my master’s money add up to a great sum!”

Posted by Sanjay | Report as abusive

Looking at the situation from a purely Pakistani point of view. Among the American War on Terror, Indian ambitions in Afghanistan, Northern Alliance’s bitterness towards Pakistan and Indo-Pak cold conflicts there is another war as well, Pakistan Peoples parties war against the military establishment.

PPP has lost two leaders against this military establishment, first against the Army and second against ISI (in my view atleast). International resentment and concern over ISI has existed for a long time however it was ineffective until a substantial force joined these voices from within Pakistan. A similar case existed within Pakistan where progressive democratic forces fought against ISI’s influence without international support until now.

I believe the curtailing of ISI (if it happens) will usher a new forgein policy in Pakistan. Militant support will dry-up, anomosities against India will die down (even if no similar sentiments are made from the Indians). And most importantly Pakistan’s military establishment will be dealt a serious blow.

Posted by Ali Azam | Report as abusive

There is a simple three letter word that explains the United States present angst over Pakistan’s ISI. The word is oil. By threatening action against Iran ( a major oil producer), the U.S. and its ally Israel, sent the world’s oil markets in a tizzy that has hurt major world economies including the U. S. badly.

The Clinton Adminstration was more astute.Only non-oil producing nations were targeted for retaliation for the attacks on U. S. embassies in Africa.

The Bush Administration now clearly wants to complete the task they set out to do by invading Iraq.(wrong country?) Pakistan does not produce any oil. An attack on it will only draw shrill protests and nothing else.(There was never any great affection for Pakistan by the major oil producers in the Middle East.)

Neutralizing the Taliban in Pakistan once and for all may actually bring oil prices down and please the whole world.

Posted by LALAN FAKIR | Report as abusive

Good question, we need to always scrutinize the mass media. My guesses are as follows:

1. Pakistan is a US client state turning rotten and out of control, CIA realises that, and the CIA and USA have their own problems they brought about themselves. USA realise the impending explosion and are resorting to desperate measures.

2. USA is wooing a new horse called India, for its Asian theatre against China, which has courted Pakistan also. It needs to show India that its no longer in bed with Pakistan.

3. USA doesn’t want what Russia got from the Muhajadeen.
So a last ditch effort, before scrambling for the door.

4. What does US gain from Afghanistan? At some point the oil pipeline might become a pipe dream.

I’m sure the foreign policy teams in the Pentagon have their own battle amongst themselves, so I expect a lot of convoluted local (US) political infighting, like the neocon prelude to Iraq playing

Pathma

Posted by Pathma | Report as abusive

Why now? Because a scapegoat is required. The US is struggling in Afghanistan, losing the war there as well, as it was always bound to. It refused to acknowledge the history of the area, and is paying the lessons. That history shows the connectedness of Afghanistan with the tribal areas of ‘Pakistan’.

Posted by Emperors clothes | Report as abusive

Sanjay,

Your partisan view of India overlooks the works of its RAW agency. RAW has been nurturing chaos in Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka for decades. Please don’t hide under the ubiquitos terrorism banner and plead innocent.

What you fail to grasp is the new geo-strategic ‘Great Game’ being played out. South and Central Asia is the new Middle-East. The American New World Order is 100% geared towards ensuring that a new Superpower does not emerge to challenge it hegemony.

Access and control of resources will help starve rival nations – ie China. America’s recent warmth towards India is aimed at propping up India to neuter the Chinese.

The Russians and the Chinese understand this fully – hence the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation.

I would urge you not to swallow the nonsense dished out by corporate western media.

Posted by Moody | Report as abusive

It was a very simple question to answer which has been made look complicated by the subscriber to this post by their beating about the bush ( I don’t mean President Bush or self proclaimed President Mush )

The answer to this question is as follows:

First consider the internal politics of Pakistan:

It is common knowledge in Pakistan that there is no love lost between the present ruling party, Pakistan People Party (PPP), and the military establishment of Pakistan since General Zia’s time. The PPP due to some cogent reasons holds the military establishment of Pakistan responsible for the killing of its 4 top leaders ( ZA Butto his two sons and his daughter Benazir Bhutto). It also blames the military establishment, and that also for good reasons, for the dismissal of its two democratically elected governments. The present PPP government feels, and perhaps rightly so, that if it has to rule Pakistan comfortably and complete its tenure it will first have to tame the premier spy agency of Pakistan ie ISI which is currently managed and controlled by Pakistan Army. It is very difficult for PPP to tame and bring ISI under its control. PPP feels it can achieve this with the help of America.

Now consider the American compulsions for taming of ISI:

America has always been accusing some rogue elements in ISI for leaking some vital information to the Taliban before America takes an action against them which results in the failure of their operation. American accusation against ISI has always been denied by Pakistan. However, there is a strong possibility that there are indeed such elements in ISI which both in the distant and recent pasts had very friendly and brotherly relationship with Mujahedeen and Taliban. Thus we see how the American and PPP interests in taming of ISI converge perfectly.

Now come to the timing of present action in regard to ISI:

The PPP took over the reins of government some 5 months back but is still working under the shadow of military establishment which obviously it does not like. American Presidential election is due after about 3 months for which its republican candidate desparately needs a shot in the arm since America’s performance in war on terror in Afghanistan has not been all that successful which is now an election issue.

So you see what could be a better time than this both for America and PPP to tame the ISI and show some results to their voters.

Therefore 2+2=4 QED.

Posted by Kabir Das | Report as abusive

although i do not support an invasion of Pakistan, i support any action which will curtail the ISI’s abilities…it will go a long way in reducing terrorism within the Subcontinent and bringing true democracy within pakistan…RAW has been responsible for troubles within pakistan but it was retaliatory action…not that i justify killing of pakistani civilians but in da shadowy world of espionage there’s no room for morals….we all know who gave a start to this cloak and dagger game which began in 1947

Posted by Tejas | Report as abusive

Moody, why don’t you tell me which embassy of Pakistan’s has been blown up by India? Is Pakistan’s embassy in Nepal in flames or rubble? India often complains that Pakistan’s embassy there is involved in sponsoring militancy. While you want to play a game of moral equivalency between the 2 countries — obviously you don’t care one iota that India is the democracy out of the 2 countries — to ignore the long difference in their track records. Which Indian security agency isn’t accountable to the Indian parliament? Which military coup has India had? Which military dictatorship has India been ruled by? You seem to think that democracies and military dictatorships are morally equivalent, but they’re not. Democracies behave more responsibly and more maturely, in case you’re not aware. I’m so sorry that I have to spell out the obvious for you. Your comments say more about you than about the subject you’re commenting upon.

Posted by Sanjay | Report as abusive

Hey Sanjay
Its my turn to confront you now. Ok, so what democracy are you talking about? What India did in 1971 by imposing a war and flaming conflict in East Pakistan was totally undemocratic. RAW has been widely involved in the terrorist activities in Pakistan, I guess RAW being answerable to the Indian Govt, so RAW terrorism in Pakistan might be authorized by the Indian democratic govt? Do you have a say?
India is widely hated in Sri Lanka that is because of meddling in internal affairs of that country by India.
Nepal can never assert its soverignity over India, its such a small country. Its only Pakistan in the whole region that has always remained a challenge for India.
The question arises, why does India need half a dozen consulates in Afghanistan? Simply because RAW wants to destabalize the NWFP and Baluchistan region of Pakistan using these consulates as a shield. ISI is an intelligence agency, and cannot allow India to establish spy centres in its neighbourhood. Fact is, ISI remains a force to be reckoned with. You put your own house in order first, your corrupt law enforcement agencies lacking professionalism have failed to protect your people. Why blame ISI, RAW is your culprit. Ask RAW why is it sleeping while local Indian terrorist groups create mayhem in your cities.

Posted by UMPK | Report as abusive

Did the ISI get some training from the CIA?

Posted by Conscientious Observer | Report as abusive

They have chosen this time because it is ripe now. There could never have been a better time. Its all about taking control of Pakistan’s atomic program. It was impossible that the US forces packed back from Iraq and Afghanistan without settling the core issue of Pakistan’s nuclear program. So the time has come, fortunately for the US, the public opinion against the Pakistan Army is touching the lowest level in the country. The scenario may have been articulately created where President Musharraf was reassured again and again by the US only serving to drop his, and the Military’s, popularity to an extent where a strike against ISI, and thus the nuclear assets of Pakistan, was possible. It should be kept in mind that the total control of Pakistan’s nuclear program is in the hands of Military or more precisely ISI.

Posted by Jawad | Report as abusive

[...] A spate of allegationsthat Pakistan’s powerful spy agency, the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI),  was involved in the bombing has forced India-Pakistan rivalry back onto centre-stage. This is not just about India and Pakistan, or so the argument goes. Their rivalry is undermining U.S. efforts to defeat al Qaeda and the Taliban since the ISI is maintaining links with Islamist militants to counter Indian influence in the region. And Pakistan’s denial of involvement in the embassy attack has done little to quell the speculation. [...]

Dear Friends

I would like to add that the politicians in the White house require us to think that ISI is to be blamed for all that has gone wrong in Iraq and Afghanistan.

I would like to pose a question but don want an answer. I just want people to think about this within themselves.

DIDI YOU REALLY EXPECT THE WARR IN IRAQ OR AFGHANISTAN TO BE SMOOTH AND SUCCESSFULL?

In the time of election the parties need an escape goat but dont worry I am quite sure that another message from so alled terrorist (al qaeda) would help to swing the voters into certain direction as per some require in the white house.

This happend whilst Bush was running for presidency in his second phase as a President and just a day ago a helpful message for Pervaz Musharaff and in future as Amercia and allies required.

Anyways the only way o end this activities semms to be to reslolve major problems such as Killig of kashmiris by India in their controlled land is not relaistic and should not be able to happen in todays wold.

Asim

Posted by asim butt | Report as abusive

[...] Inter-Services Intelligence agency (ISI), as the CIA has recently publicly complained, though everybody has known it perfectly well, at least some elements have cooperative connections with the Taliban. This is [...]

Myra, Americans aspire – and pretend to be – world cops, but unless it begins to burn their own fingers and other parts of their anatomy, people killed by shady organizations like ISI in other parts of the world – such as the remote India of snake charmers and rope trick – makes no difference to them. Like dirty cops on the take they look the other way.
And now you are asking why they are looking the right way now!Well,simply because their own families are in danger now and the dirty money doesn’t count for much!

Posted by Ravindra | Report as abusive

All of us indulged in trying to imposing our own viewpoints on others and expecting others to believ blindly in these must realise that the spy agencies, no matter where and for whom they work for, are always meant for destructive and maLicious purpose. It’s not a question who did what and who didn’t. The question is that these agencies are always incorporated with a rougue idea of inflicting damage to others we think our opponents.

Posted by Shayan | Report as abusive

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