Afghan supply routes face setbacks in Pakistan, Kyrgyzstan

February 3, 2009

U.S. efforts to improve supplies for its troops in Afghanistan just had a double setback after militants in northwest Pakistan severed the main supply route for western forces and Kyrgyzstan’s president said the United States must close its military base there.

Militants blew up a bridge on the Khyber Pass, cutting the supply route to western forces in Afghanistan and underscoring the need for the United States to seek alternative supply lines. The U.S. military sends 75 percent of supplies for the Afghan war through Pakistan but has been looking at using other transit routes through Central Asia. Although Washington has been sketchy on the details of its plans, its Manas military airbase near the Kyrgyz capital Bishkek has so far provided important logistical support for its operations in Afghanistan.  During a visit to Moscow, Kyrgyz President Kurmanbek Bakiyev announced the closure of the base, opened after the 9/11 attacks.  Bakiyev made the announcement after securing a $2 billion loan and a further $150 million in aid from Russia.

So what is going on here? Is Russia taking advantage of U.S. vulnerability in Afghanistan to flex its muscles in Central Asia? Or responding to a perceived threat of U.S. expansionism in the region?

Former Indian diplomat M.K. Bhadrakumar has suggested that the United States can win Moscow’s support in Afghanistan only if it dispels suspicions that it has exploited its post 9/11 operations there as an excuse to build its presence in Central Asia as part of a containment strategy targeting not just Russia but also Iran and China.  That may sound a little bit like Cold War thinking, harking back to those simpler days when containment was one of the buzzwords of superpower rivalry. These days the scramble for Central Asia seems to be more about the competition for resources — especially oil and gas – as discussed in this post. But he does make a lot of interesting points, particularly if you remember the Soviet Union’s own justification for its disastrous invasion of Afghanistan in 1979, which was partly to stop the United States from setting up bases there following the Iranian Islamic revolution.In an article for Eurasia, Stephen Blank, a professor at the U.S. Army War College, took a different view of U.S. motives, but reached the same conclusion: the United States will have to make concessions to win Russia’s cooperation on Afghanistan. 

“Russia has the capability to exact a steep price for its cooperation, and it seems fairly certain that the Kremlin will strive to do just that,” he wrote. “One area in which it will likely try to exact that price is in the Caucasus and Black Sea regions, specifically in seeking NATO assurances that Georgia and Ukraine will not be offered membership in the alliance for the foreseeable future, if ever. It is a mark of the strategic malpractice of past U.S. policymakers in Central Asia and Afghanistan that Moscow now finds itself in position to potentially dictate conditions for participation in an endeavor that is clearly in Russia’s best interests.”

There are still lots of stray threads in this struggle for influence in Central Asia. Tajik President Imomali Rakhmon just reversed an earlier decision to cancel a trip to Moscow, in what was seen as an attempt to put pressure on Russia to increase financial support for Tajikistan. Meanwhile the United States is quietly rebuilding ties with Uzbekistan, despite its human rights record, according to this article in the Christian Science Monitor. Uzbekistan evicted the U.S. military in 2005 after Washington and other Western governments called for an inquiry into the reported massacre of hundreds of civilians during a protest in the city of Andizhan.

And if you don’t want to go through Central Asia, NATO says it would not oppose member nations making deals with Iran to use it as a transit route to supply their forces in Afghanistan, according to this AP story. That would probably require compromises of its own, not least over Iran’s nuclear programme. The alternative, of course, is to keep relying on Pakistan as the easiest entry point into Afghanistan – bringing us full circle back to the early days post 9/11 when the Bush administration turned to Islamabad for help in overturning the Taliban.

Can, or will, the new administration of President Barack Obama chart a different course?

 

 

 

 

79 comments

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The important question you should be addressing is that Who are the Taliban? Who created them? Who are Supporting them?

There is no pashtun nationalistic struggle against the foreign troops in afghanistan rather a bunch of terrorists from Punjab, arab countries, central asian republics etc are fighting for their own agendas and play havoc with the lives of innocent pashtuns.

In the tribal areas all this is happening in connivance and colloboration of Pakistani national security apparatus- army and ISI.

Being a pashtun I fully support international presence in afghanistan untill process of institution building is complete. Leaving afghanistan at this moment, westren world will commit a grave crime. Lets recall what happened to afghanistan and pashtuns after the withdrawl of USSR.
Pashtuns intelligencia around the world supports US and Nato presence in Afghanistan at this moment of history.

We are highly enlightened! Once upon a time we created Taliban to drive away the Soviet. Now we seek his Almighty Soviet’s help to drive away the Taliban. How fascinating are we!

Posted by pk | Report as abusive

[...] Myra MacDonald cites Stephen Blank, a professor at the U.S. Army War College who reached the conclusion that the United States will have to make concessions to win Russia’s cooperation on Afghanistan.  “Russia has the capability to exact a steep price for its cooperation, and it seems fairly certain that the Kremlin will strive to do just that,” he wrote. “One area in which it will likely try to exact that price is in the Caucasus and Black Sea regions, specifically in seeking NATO assurances that Georgia and Ukraine will not be offered membership in the alliance for the foreseeable future, if ever. It is a mark of the strategic malpractice of past U.S. policymakers in Central Asia and Afghanistan that Moscow now finds itself in position to potentially dictate conditions for participation in an endeavor that is clearly in Russia’s best interests.” [...]

pukhtoon’s comment is interesting.

i want to refer the readers to this link….

http://edition.cnn.com/2009/POLITICS/02/ 02/Obama.afghan/

“The Taliban are seen as a foreign force by many Afghans, Hafvenstein says.

“Many Afghans saw the Taliban as an occupation army funded by Pakistan and various Arab countries, and were willing to tolerate a U.S./NATO military presence in Afghanistan as a lesser evil,” he says.”

Posted by basu | Report as abusive

“Many Afghans saw the Taliban as an occupation army funded by Pakistan and various Arab countries”- if we accept this statement then who is funding the Taliban occupying a large chunk of tribal areas/ Swat and fighting against Pakistan army?

Posted by Julius | Report as abusive

The set back in kyrgystan is only a matter of money..The Kyrgystan prez has been demanding more money for the US base in there for last 3 years but with out results, as per US the negotiation talks are still on..this is a simple but good move by Russia and or Kyrgystan to exploit US and other NATO countries..looks like its payback time..the west should be exploited on every opportunity, afterall they are rich only after looting our resources for centuries..

Posted by Anitha | Report as abusive

These supply lines through Pakistan have existed for last eight years, and now because of a few attacks during past few months, the media now call Pakistan “unreliable”. What a bunch of ingrates.

Let NATO/US truck their supplies in from elsewhere I say, less problems for Pakistanis.

Myra
“Can, or will, the new administration of President Barack Obama chart a different course?”

—Obama’s plans to re-engage Russia to cut nuclear warheads by both the countries & reduce them to 1000 is being seriously pursued & White House has also for now,delayed, the installation in the Czech Republic and Poland of the missile defence shield system, Russia has reciprocated by shelving it’s own plans to install missiles near Poland…one thing is sure – The American think-tank may concede some grounds to the Russians, but not an inch to Iran, irrespective of what NATO says or does…

Posted by Anup | Report as abusive

Bangash Khan
“Let NATO/US truck their supplies in from elsewhere I say, less problems for Pakistanis.”

—If this happens, then the problems for Pakistan will multiply a thousand folds…

Posted by Anup | Report as abusive

Myra
Your article is knowledgeable, I believe Pakistan’s logistical support is of paramount importance for the coalition forces in Afghanistan.The fragility has underscored the importance not to push Pakistan to the edge by reckless drone attacks on tribes. No matter how many alternative supply routes are sought, those will be stretched, vulnerable and costly not to mention the realiability factor. As US is pledging 30,000 more troops, the question is how will they sustain themselves in Afghanistan. The US will be pushed to closely cooperate and work with Pakistani leadership both civilian and military. Importantly, if Pakistani leaders put their point across properly, the drone attacks could stop. These drone attacks are tactical and they are increasing the strategic costs. This logistical nightmare/challenge could be turned into an opportunity. Given the current situation, Iran factor is also interesting. Pakistan enjoys a satisfactory relations with Iran. Afghanistan is centrally located, all its immediate neighbours have a huge stake in its stability and important role to play. The task to sustain any large troop surge in Afghanistan will be very challenging for Obama administration and will be a test of leadership. Are they willing to take risks like engaging Iran? Should they become more aggressive with a nuclear Pakistan already pushed to the limits? I hope our leaders play it wise. If we can hold our nerves and keep a lid on things in FATA and provide the much needed stability we can surely become indespensable partners in this effort to attain coalition objectives in Afghanistan. Will Obama administration chart a different strategy will much depend on the situation on ground, the way things are turning they need to adopt a flexible open approach keeping options on the table. This increases their dependence on multiple players and decreases their leverage.

In other words, US is in same position today as the Soviet Union was in Afghanistan during the 80s. Russia knows this, it further limits US options vis-a-vis engagement with Russia. If all the countries and leaders act in good faith, both Afghanistan will get stable and its neighbours will avoid instability.

Posted by Umair | Report as abusive

@”who is funding the Taliban occupying a large chunk of tribal areas/ Swat and fighting against Pakistan army?”

-Julius, dont get fooled by tactics fo pakistani army..it is still being funded by pak army..the latest proof is Taliban capturning 30 frontier corps men and relazing them with out harming after confiscating all the weapons they had..militants has also taken over the police station and god knows how much ammunition was stored in that station!! nobody calls this fighting..this is the method used by paki army to supply arms and ammunition to taliban & alquaeda to fight in afghanistan..

Posted by Anitha | Report as abusive

Anup
in response to Bangash Khan you seem to suggest alternative supply routes to Afghanistan will increase Pakistan’s problems. I didnt quite get that, could you please elaborate how?

NB: I agree with Khan, more countries need to shoulder the burden. Why Pakistan is always asked to “do more, do quickly”?

Posted by Umair | Report as abusive

If US can think on cost lines..it still looks cheaper to counter the 2billion $ loan from russia to Krygystan by $4billion instead of paying pakistan $8.5 billion in aid not even loan !!

Posted by Anitha | Report as abusive

Anitha

—You forgot to mention Saudi & middle east arabs…

Posted by Anup | Report as abusive

Guys this will be an interesting read:
http://blogs.reuters.com/great-debate/20 09/02/04/americas-long-long-afghan-war/

Some highlights:

-the United States will stay longer in Afghanistan than the Soviets did.

-politicians running for the 2012 presidential election will describe the Afghan war as Barack Obama’s war.

-The Soviet and American wars in Afghanistan differ vastly in scale and purpose.

- hot-pursuit U.S. air strikes into Pakistan carry the risk of destabilizing the fragile government there – the government of a nuclear-armed state.

Thanks

Posted by Umair | Report as abusive

Anup, engaging Russia in a quiet (and ultimately deniable) way over the missile shield and arms reduction is one thing. But if quiet diplomacy is the way things are meant to go, wasn’t the announcement of the closure of the Kyrgyz airbase a little bit loud? In other words, how do you think the United States will, or can, respond to such a public demarcation of territory?

Umair, you will have seen that Holbrooke is now also going to Delhi to discuss Afghanistan: http://www.reuters.com/article/latestCri sis/idUSN04294944

This question may be a long shot, but do you see any possibility of India and Pakistan finding common ground on stabilising Afghanistan?

Myra

Posted by Myra MacDonald | Report as abusive

Myra
I just read the news of Holbrroke’s upcoming visit.

-”Holbrooke’s mandate was carefully drawn to avoid any suggestion that he would mediate between India and Pakistan.”
-”"Like the Europeans and others, India has a very strong interest in Afghanistan, expressed by their over $1 billion in assistance, and in the issue of terrorism in Pakistan and the region, so we are going to coordinate with (them) just like we coordinate with other interested parties,”

I believe Pakistan is being left out of the equation. India is not interested to normalize its relations with Pakistan. They are way too concerned with the stability of Afghanistan. They would have taken a different approach with pakistan, we share a 2200Km long border with them, if Pakistan gets unstable it will affect India more. In my opinion Pakistan’s concerns regarding India using Afghanistan to encircle it are true to some extent. I do not want to be paranoid about it, but the situation on the ground shows. In other words US is saying lets bring India on board and screw the Pakistanis if they dont behave(??).
If Europeans and Indians and Americans are interested in Afghan stability so is Pakistan.
Ok, Holbrooke has his limitations. He needs to secure India’s cooperation and knows India will not accept US mediation with Pakistan on issues like Kashmir. Understandable. But unless India and Pakistan come together and develop trust, much can be mutually achieved. On the positive, I believe the US will certainly put efforts to get India and Pakistan gain some common ground. We saw it in Kargil, in 2001-02 border standoff and after Mumbai to some extent.
The possibility exists for Indo-Pak common ground on Afghanistan but due to mistrust it is low currently.

Thanks

Posted by Umair | Report as abusive

Myra

—Probably,Kyrgystan is abiding Russia’s wish & it could well be a message from the Russians that they should be the defacto concierge, the Georgian invasion, surely must have conveyed a tacit yet unambiguous message to the entire region…but a single entity to work things out with, could prove to be beneficial to the Americans also

Posted by Anup | Report as abusive

Just to add few more sentences Myra, the onus is on India now. Much depends on them, if they are willing to normalize relations with pakistan and work. This way Afghanistan will achieve greater stability, consequently Pakistan and India in return. This is where i seriously think Mumbai attacks were designed to harm India as much as they were designed to harm pakistan.

Posted by Umair | Report as abusive

there is no common ground between India and pakistan for a cause in afghanistan..
when we speak of military support pakistan do not want India to be present in India and for financial aid pakistan do not have money to give away aid..and India will never give a aid for pakistan army to fight.

Posted by Anitha | Report as abusive

Anitha
If Pakistan and India do not have a common ground in Afghanistan, do you know what does that translate into literally: “proxy war”. Yes, the international community is investing huge in Afghanistan, they cannot allow India and Pakistan to use Afghanistan as a battleground for proxy warfare. India should forget the idea of using Afghanistan as a means to destablize Pakistan.

Posted by Umair | Report as abusive

Myra
I have to share following links:

NATO-Pakistan Relations
http://www.nato.int/issues/nato_pakistan  /practice.html
While Afghanistan is a key focus of cooperation, NATO and Pakistan have developed regular exchanges at various levels, including visits by senior officials and opinion leaders, as well as participation by Pakistani military officials in NATO training programmes.
Visits of Pakistani opinion leaders to NATO HQ have also been organised. There, they were briefed on NATO’s policies. Military contacts are also taking place, and NATO has agreed to open selected training and education courses to Pakistani officers.

Myra
By giving a second thought, also after reading the Russian/Kyrgyz news on closure of airbase and economic ties. I feel Pakistan has close ties with NATO and traditionally been a US ally. India has drifted closer to the US with civil nuclear technology etc in recent years. It is coincidence while Russia is urging cooperation taking China and CIS states on board. This time around, both India and Pakistan seem to be in the US camp. Well, to your earlier question I must say I tend to agree with you, the way things are going India and Pakistan might have to find common ground or might be compelled to find common ground on Afghanistan.
India cannot rely on Russia like the Soviet Union in the cold war. Russians are driven with interests (economic and military). Also, Holbrooke might have included India in his intenirary immediately as Russia lured Kyrgyzstan. A new power game seems to be building up. Russia has messed up a little here.
It is begining to look like Russia/China/4 former soviet republics VS NATO-US/EU PAK/IND. Many allies find themselves on the opposite sides. It is certainly complex situation.

Posted by Umair | Report as abusive

Umair, you said:

“It is begining to look like Russia/China/4 former soviet republics VS NATO-US/EU PAK/IND. Many allies find themselves on the opposite sides. It is certainly complex situation.”

That’s an interesting point and one I shall follow up. I tried to approach it in this blog about Afghanistan and the breakdown of the balance of power:
http://blogs.reuters.com/pakistan/2009/0 1/27/afghanistan-and-the-breakdown-of-th e-balance-of-power/

As far as I know historically (and hope to be corrected if I am wrong) the last time there was such a malaise in the balance of power was just before World War One.

If you, or others who post here, think that parallel is wrong, please let me know.

Myra

Posted by Myra MacDonald | Report as abusive

KHYBER AGENCY: Pakistan Army engineers busy in repairing the bridge, damaged by militants, to restore the heavy traffic and Nato supply within 72 hours here on Wednesday. -APP
http://www.brecorder.com 04Feb 2009

Posted by Umair | Report as abusive

Myra,
Third World War! No way!( Personally I don’t want a war ). Even if the countries are going to take sides,I think there is a certain rule that will never change. Its like even though Russia and US consistently bicker among themselves,they will finally end up as allies,like it happened during the previous world wars. The same is the case with UK and France-in the future even India and Pakistan may end up as allies,some day some country may try to invade India and Pak will come to India’s rescue or vice-versa. (In the future,Pakistan and India can certainly be like England and France ,why not?)

I don’t think there are enough fanatics present today to spark a third world war. China certainly wants development. Western Europe isn’t interested in the war. Maybe after a long time,if some dictator in some communist nation try to do show his authority towards other nations,nations may regroup. But this is not the time for the war where the supposed future superpowers like China are still not fully developed. It is still premature to group the nations and no country will take sides to support a silly jihad.

Posted by mitchell | Report as abusive

[...] Reuters Global post goes more in-depth on those logistical problems, noting (for example), There are still lots of [...]

Umair
“the onus is on India now.”
—The onus is on the citizens of Pakistan, you’ll have sacrificed a lot for democracy, now strengthen it—Send the Army to the barracks, confine it to where it belongs, & contain ISI…

“i seriously think Mumbai attacks were designed to harm India as much as they were designed to harm pakistan.”
—I assure you it was designed to harm India only but will eventually harm Pakistan.

Posted by Anup | Report as abusive

Myra
USA+NATO vs Russia+China, rest are ambiguous…
Although the ingredients are there, who will brew the soup? Who’ll be the trigger? Asian countries do not possess the potential, maybe the focus should again be the Eastern European countries…

Posted by Anup | Report as abusive

On the one hand,India sits on the negotiating table & tries to make peace with us. On the other hand,it sends terrorists into Pakistan to try & destabalize/breakup the country.

What sort of hypocritical country is this?

Posted by Qasim | Report as abusive

@anup

“I assure you it was designed to harm India only but will eventually harm Pakistan”—> I assure you, India has been sending terrorists into our country to try & harm us for some time now…it has been a terrorist country with an expansionist agenda in the region. Theres nothing new about your threat…your country has been specializing in cross border terrorism for a long time now

Posted by Qasim | Report as abusive

Quasim,
“On the one hand,India sits on the negotiating table & tries to make peace with us. On the other hand,it sends terrorists into Pakistan”

Come on Quasim, give us some proof-credible proof,not some garbage from Zaid Hamid.

Posted by mitchell | Report as abusive

Qasim

—The Pakistani Army & leadership, over the years, have injected a fear psychosis of India & degenerated the civil population into a neurotic society…

Posted by Anup | Report as abusive

@mitchell

You want proof of how RAW has fanned the flames of revolt in Balochistan? Here you go then,I have coped & pasted an article from Sri Lanka’s Daily Mirror newspaper…its an editorial. Enjoy!

RAW RAW rocks the boat

It certainly is a monumental task for the informed Sri Lankan or for that matter anyone in the neighbourhood of India to keep a straight face when talking about the Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) in India.

Formed in 1968, the predatory operations carried out by this external intelligence agency of India in the neighbouring countries, is perhaps the best example as to how a geographically advantageous nations bully their little neighbours.

A careful study of the RAW would spell out that its modus operandi include multi-nationals, non-governmental organizations and even cultural centres. Among its most ambitious operations that are currently underway is the move to separate Balochistan province from Pakistan by supporting Balochistan Liberation Army.

The RAW in Sri Lanka has a pretty colourful record.

Having raised, nursed and fortified the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam it later went through phases where it adopted ‘rock the baby, pinch the baby’ approach towards the LTTE. While many thought the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi would have hardened the approach of the RAW towards the LTTE it really did not happen that way. While New Delhi was shattered by the death of Nehru’s grandson the less emotional RAW moved on with rest of operation.In 2007 ripples were created in the spy agency when one of its Colombo based officers Ravi Nair of 1975 batch was found allegedly carrying on an affair with a woman working for a Chinese spy agency.

The ‘crime’ was considered only second to what was committed by the RAW Joint Secretary Rabinder Singh in 2004 when he escaped with copies of several highly confidential documents and is believed to have passed them on to the CIA. This was after Singh’s superiors confronted him with evidence that he had spent time with a Delhi based female US embassy officer at a resort down New Delhi- Jaipur highway.

The incident really rocked the RAW and forced it to go for several reforms which included strong counter-check measures on its officers.

Despite these measures within three years a second scandal broke out, this time in Colombo.

Following the embarrassment caused by Ravi Nair in Colombo, the RAW recalled the officer made it a point to post a lady officer to Colombo, probably thinking that’s the best way to discourage Chinese spies.

The reports that the RAW is out to create mischief in the backdrop of recent military victories by Sri Lankan troops surfaced days after media reports that Pottu Amman who was pulled up by Prabhakaran over recent debacles, had slipped off to India.

That the RAW was planning to host a selected group of fleeing LTTE seniors in India with a view to checkmate Sri Lanka in the future was the speculation among many war analysts around this time. Many held that it would only be a surprise if it doesn’t resort to such a counter- strategy given its record which included among others dozens and dozens of moves to weaken both SLFP and UNP led governments in Sri Lanka.

Then came the ‘Times of India’ leak that a team of the RAW operatives and spy planes have been sent to spy across the Palk straits and yesterday the local dailies here went to town about the spy plane spotted in the skies above Mullaitivu and the Navy attempts to shoot it down. All this is little too much evidence for a cynic to dismiss that the whole thing is just a grand ‘conspiracy theory’, a rumour spread by the anti- Indian lobby in Colombo.

Sri Lanka is certainly in no mood to trust the Research and Analysis Wing of India.

Posted by Qasim | Report as abusive

@mitchell

I have copied & pasted an article from a non-Pakistani newspaper,showing how RAW spreads T-ism in Pakistan. What do you have to say now? What is your response?

Posted by Qasim | Report as abusive

@anup

Look,very few Pakistanis view military rule as having been constructive & thats why so many of us took to the streets in protest last year, ie the 2007 lawyers movement that culminated in the toppling of President Musharraf. And although very few of us hate your country, it IS inflammatory that India has been supporting T-ism in Pakistan…how can we make peace with a country that supports T-ism on our soil? I am not saying I believe in war; I merely think peace is not possible.

Posted by Qasim | Report as abusive

@Quasim,
Again let me quote you
“On the one hand,India sits on the negotiating table & tries to make peace with us. On the other hand,it sends terrorists into Pakistan”

I didn’t ask you about Sri Lanka. I agree RAW played foul games in Sri Lanka. But where’s the proof it played the same in Pak. Again don’t write some garbage misleading to Lanka,show a non-partisan source.

Posted by mitchell | Report as abusive

@Quasim,
“I have copied & pasted an article from a non-Pakistani newspaper,showing how RAW spreads T-ism in Pakistan.”

There is not a single word on Pakistan in the article you showed me……….

Posted by mitchell | Report as abusive

Qasim

You are strengthening my pointing out the incompetency of RAW…It’s hightime they prove a match to ISI, pay back Pakistan in their own coin…
“the ‘Times of India’ leak that a team of the RAW operatives and spy planes have been sent to spy across the Palk straits and yesterday the local dailies here went to town about the spy plane spotted in the skies above Mullaitivu and the Navy attempts to shoot it down.”

LOL! TOI is a Pakistani spy…hahahaha

Posted by Anup | Report as abusive

Kyrgyzstan says U.S. air base decision is final

http://www.reuters.com/article/topNews/i dUSTRE5151GN20090206

Posted by Anup | Report as abusive

@mitchell

Read the last sentence of the third paragraph & you will see how the Sri Lankans assert how RAW has cause havoc in Balochistan province…which btw is in Pakistan.

Posted by Qasim | Report as abusive

@anup

Funny how you assert that RAW should pay back Pakistan for its own games,because thats EXACTLY how some Pakistanis viewed the Mumbai attacks.Fine they were tragic, it was an appaling episode & loss of innocent life (be it Hindu,Muslim,Christian,Jew or whoever) is unjustified. However RAW has been playing these games in Pakistan for decades now…it has been killing innocent Pakistanis for so long.

Based on this reasoning,it can be said that the Mumbai attacks were no different an episode from what RAW has been doing to other countries in the first place.

Posted by Qasim | Report as abusive

@anup

Just in case you dont WANT to acknowledge how third parties ALSO acknowledge RAW’s role in Pakistan, I have copied & pasted the entire third paragraph from that article…which asserts how RAW has set out to dismember Pakistan through its conduct in Balochistan province….

A careful study of the RAW would spell out that its modus operandi include multi-nationals, non-governmental organizations and even cultural centres. Among its most ambitious operations that are currently underway is the move to separate Balochistan province from Pakistan by supporting Balochistan Liberation Army.

Posted by Qasim | Report as abusive

Quasim,
Its very tough speaking with you bro,I meant a full article on RAW’s activities in Baloch not a word,a line the which the journalist probably hadn’t researched on and he might be just quoting your people. I myself is searching such an article for days.

Posted by mitchell | Report as abusive

@mitchell

Sis, you asked for evidence about RAW’s activities in Balochistan & I gave it to you…whether its a sentence or a line or a paragraph or a book it doesnt matter…what matters is that a non-Pakistani source is accusing you of the same thing…and the fact of the matter is that you have been proven wrong….’nuff said

Posted by Qasim | Report as abusive

Quasim,
Mitchell is right. Its an article on RAW’s fanaticism in Sri Lanka,not our Baluchistan. Its funny,We quote one line and say its an evidence,but when India sends a multipage dossier we say it is just an information and that it is fabricated,we make contradicting statements,we blush,We drive away the terrorist’s relatives away from the media etc etc..

Posted by pk | Report as abusive

@pk

stop posing as a Pakistani and google “RAW an instrument of indian imperialism” its by Isha Khan, a Bangladeshi author

Posted by Qasim | Report as abusive

Qasim

“separate Balochistan province from Pakistan by supporting Balochistan Liberation Army.”
—I wish them all the luck to succeed in their noble mission, we owe it to the Balochi’s.

Posted by Anup | Report as abusive

@anup

In which case, I wish our ISI luck in seperating Kashmir, Assam etc from India. Plus I hope our government steps up its support for the Maoists in Chattisgarh & Andrha Pradesh :)

Posted by Qasim | Report as abusive

Even the Sri Lankan & Bangladeshi media have printed articles condeming India’s expansionist role in the region…it must be remembered that other countries in the SAARC region are grateful to Pakistan having stood up to the evil giant again & again in their meetings. Pakistan should ally itself with all these other movements & infiltrate India on a huge scale…giving our neighbour a taste of its own medicine because thats EXACTLY what India deserves

Posted by Qasim | Report as abusive

Qasim

—May the best man win…

Posted by Anup | Report as abusive

@Anup

Indeed…although remember your country can be torn apart by a neighbour thats unstable…it terrifies level headed commentators in your country

Posted by Qasim | Report as abusive

Qasim

—This american propaganda is digested by Pakistani’s, not by Indians,

Posted by Anup | Report as abusive

@Anup

What American propaganda do you speak of?

Posted by Qasim | Report as abusive

Quasim,
See,Indians,Pakistanis and Bangladeshis are liars when it comes to framing history or speaking about politics. People like Zaid Hamid and Raj Thackerey talk without citing sources and have the talent of making the whole world believe them,like they are prophets. The sources we can trust can be only from journalists. There are many people like you who would like to malign India. You only quote your word,at most some line from some source and no proof. This also happens in wikipedia,there is a topic called ‘STATE SPONSORED TERRORISM’ which was seriously vandalised by Pakistanis and Bangladeshis. They added a big story-while Iran’s is only a line- with a lot of typos,grammar mistakes,forget them,but without any citations. That Paragraph on India exist still today with some us only having corrected the typos and Grammatical errors,still those fellows like you in the user talk cannot submit proper proofs,the editors have given them a few month’s time. Of course you can file a proof from Dawn,times of India,but anyone having some conscience ,can they quote Zaid Hamid? The fellows there are showing brass tracks as an evidence! See accusing Indians of Baluchistan is just a garbage from your hate mongers. Your Government said you won the war in 1965,a lot of your people believed in that. They say they were winning the Kargil war until the day of your retreat. You people are full of hate,lies,delusion and abuses,the same whether in Youtube or blogs or anything. You say India sponsors terrorism and arrest an innocent tourist only to discover Taliban is claiming for the proud bomb blast. You all talk about kashmir,but why liberate it and make it a Swat? Suppression in the hands of the Indians are far better than oppression in the hands of the Pashtoon Muslims,isn’t it? If Indians leave,Taliban will come and kill women,just gendercide. These are not facts,still many of them agree,Can I quote this? Someone from BBC says one million Bangladeshis are killed,but that’s a taboo in your country. You will only quote Amnesty International for Kashmir,not Bangladesh. I quote J.K.Rowling when she say the same about loony Lovegood,”She only believe in a thing as long as there is no proof”. Great similarity between Quibbler’s spoof stories and yours.

Posted by mitchell | Report as abusive

Qasim

“What American propaganda do you speak of?”

—The shattering of the mirage called Pakistan, shall effect India – BS – ever heard of not feeling grateful after you awake from a nightmare…(just feel a little giddy, that’s all)

Posted by Anup | Report as abusive

Qasim, Mitchell, Anup and PK:
MY fee cents.

I am seeing Qasim is trying hard to pull out any information (forget evidence) from internet and all he researched was an article in Sri Lankan Newspaper mentioning few lines about RAW-Baloch connection.

I am also looking at it and I am as frustrated as Qasim is.

Mitchell: Great job with all the articles you have been posting lately.

OF NOTE, the article mentioned as an editorial (???)from Sri Lanka’s Daily Mirror newspaper seems like a copy/paste from Pakistani daily (www.daily.pk
Monday, 26 January 2009 03:14). Compare the 2 artcles.

http://www.daily.pk/pakistan/pakistannew s/9231-raw-behind-balochistan-unrest-raw -raw-rocks-the-boat.html

Oh my God, look below at the home page of this Paki daily, it is devoted to anti-India stuff.
http://www.daily.pk/

Qasim, if you knowingly doing this and believing, GOD help you. My knowledge tells me PAK is safe from RAW. YOu’ll learn more with an open mind than proving the non-existent.

Posted by rajeev | Report as abusive

Qasim, Mitchell, Anup, PK:
Please ignore if this is repeat post. Message upload problem—Seems ISI hand ?

My few cents.

Qasim: Back to your favorite research project of RAW-Bloch connection. I have tried to look at it and not found much.

Guys even the article posted by Qasim is not originally from Srilanka newspaper, it is a copy/paste from a Pakistani newspaper. I wonder how it could be an editorial!!! Compare the 2 articles.

If it is Dawn, it can still be thought of, here is the original article below:
http://www.daily.pk/pakistan/pakistannew s/9231-raw-behind-balochistan-unrest-raw -raw-rocks-the-boat.html

The home page stinks of a variety of anti-India stuff—the usual Paki propaganda.
http://www.daily.pk/

Qasim, A statement here and there will do no good and will not prove your point.
I suggest be open to new ideas than hell bent upon proving the non-existent

Posted by rajeev | Report as abusive

test

Posted by rajeev | Report as abusive

Qasim, Mitchell, Anup, PK:

Guys even the article posted by Qasim is a copy/paste from a Pakistani newspaper. I wonder how it could be an editorial!!! Compare the 2 articles. here is the original article:
http://www.daily.pk/pakistan/pakistannew s/9231-raw-behind-balochistan-unrest-raw -raw-rocks-the-boat.html
The home page stinks of a variety of anti-India stuff—the usual Paki propaganda.
http://www.daily.pk/

Qasim, don’t waste time. Micthell, great job for your several posts lately.

Posted by rajeev | Report as abusive

All respectable bloggers:
I apologize for the repeated messages due to uploading problem.

Posted by rajeev | Report as abusive

Rajeev,You are very right about daily.pk,its full of anti-India articles. The Pakistani papers should take a leaf out of Dawn. While the others have their main priority of spreading hatred,Dawn’s main agenda is spreading education about the troubles in SWAT,criticising Pakistani economic policies and so on. Of course he is a little inclined towards Pak in case of Indo-pak relations,like the times of India is inclined towards India.

Posted by mitchell | Report as abusive

Dailytimes.com.pk is left of liberal…whats evil is the Indian media

Posted by Qasim | Report as abusive

Qasim
So you did hide the fact of the source of the article-right?

what’s the problem with having open mind? I had oopen mind about RAW and researhed but found nothing that should Worry you at the moment. So let us Worry about the monster ISI.

Posted by rajeev | Report as abusive

To all the Pakistanis who hate India,
I want to quote something from the Dawn-an opinion from Adil Zareef,member of the Aryana Institute for Regional Research and Advocacy. He talks about the Pakistani perception of other security agencies.

“There has been a lot of double talk. Generally, the public has been led to believe by the security agencies that RAW, Mossad and CIA mercenaries were bent upon dismembering Pakistan” “The outright lies, distortions, cover-ups and fumbling by the state’s spokesmen have reached absurd proportions not only leading to a credibility deficit but the suffering of hapless civilians in the name of ‘national interest’ ”

Also let us see his views about Baloch,”Was it not a matter of grave injustice to have killed thousands in East Pakistan in the name of national interest? We have carried out similar military operations on the same flimsy grounds in Balochistan, killing the provincial leadership or forcing it into exile. This has led to the destruction of local livelihoods, and vast tracts of land have been taken away in the name of development.”

http://www.dawn.com/2009/02/09/op.htm#4

You people have got your own problems,accept that! What’s wrong in accepting the fact as it is? Your recent research that the Mumbai terror attacks were planned in Europe or Bangladesh is only going to get more shame to your nation.

Posted by mitchell | Report as abusive

@Rajeev

It was printed in Sri Lanka’s Daily Mirror magazine…hence the majority of the article was about Sri Lanka. But it did blame RAW for fanning unrest in Balochistan as well.

Posted by Qasim | Report as abusive

@mitchell

Pakistan has enough of its own problems, we know that & we see eradication of T-ism as being in our national interest. What you “refined intellectuals” dont understand is that by having a caricatured view of Pakistan & blaming the whole nation, you are marginalizing the moderates & the liberals in Pakistani society

Posted by Qasim | Report as abusive

Quasim,
See,I am not wasting my time in a pointless voyage. I want peace in Pakistan,because India benefits the most if there’s peace in South Asia. I want your moderates to educate your illiterates against using Jihad for killing innocent non-muslims. I want your moderates not to use the hate factor against India to unite your people because one day it will burst and end up in a civil war. I stand for a solution to Kashmir but not at the cost of Islamic Fanaticism. Particularly when the controversial hardliner cleric Anjum Chaudri told the BBC that killing of non-muslims is legitimate,it is the time for change in all of the Islamic states,if non-islamic or secular states have to survive.

Posted by mitchell | Report as abusive

@mitchell

Anjum Chaudhry is NOT a Pakistani, he is a mad mullah who may have had roots in Pakistan. The Pakis we sent to the UK were the ones we wanted to get rid of…they were the ones who EVEN TODAY are misfits in their own society & misfits in Pakistan as well. We dont want them & neither do the Brits…they are just so WIERD it escapes belief. Now you see, I am a “Pakistani”…..Anjum Chaudhry is a “Paki”…theres a difference!!

Secondly, I will restate that eradication of T-ism is in Pakistan’s national interest,because its good for business. Coming from a business family myself I have been affected by the lowering FDI and declining investment levels in Pakistan…in general, a society…any society needs peace if it is to prosper and create wealth for its citizens.

Thirdly, I will stop dissing your nation & engage you in constructive discussion,if you promise to do the same.

Posted by Qasim | Report as abusive

Qasim

—This very Indian “refined intellectuals” are the ones that are exercising restrain & not buckling under pressure to the warmongers,whereas the “marginalized moderates & liberals in Pakistani society”, if such do exist, lack guts & resolve to rein in the extremist ruling class – the Army & Mullahs.

“eradication of T-ism is in Pakistan’s national interest,because its good for business.”

— T-ism is the business of Pakistan! wonder what you’ll will live if eliminated?

Posted by Anup | Report as abusive

Anup wrote:
“— T-ism is the business of Pakistan! wonder what you’ll will live if eliminated?”

Anup, I am wondering how YOU will live if this blog is discontinued? where will run your smear campaign against Pakistan? Do you really think your junk posts really create an iota of difference? No.

Posted by Umair | Report as abusive

Umair
“where will run your smear campaign against Pakistan?”

—Via internet from earth- In Hell, where you’ll belong…lol

Posted by Anup | Report as abusive

Anup wrote:
“—Via internet from earth- In Hell, where you’ll belong…lol”

psycopath mentally ill Anup, keep going you are doing well. Next you will be flying on mars? huh

Posted by Umair | Report as abusive

“It was printed in Sri Lanka’s Daily Mirror magazine…hence the majority of the article was about Sri Lanka. But it did blame RAW for fanning unrest in Balochistan as well.”
- Posted by Qasim
—-Original article Was in Pakdaily. Qasim, are you still hanging on to those lines for life. Shake off all your fears (be altert though) and the fact is ISI has and is sponsoring a variety of terrorisms in India using a variety of approaches. India does not love all this. It is too big to be easily disturbed by terrorism. US and NATO believe that PAK is not dispensable yet; so sanctions not possible that can arm twist PAK to stop all that T-ism. war is not an easy solution since unstable Pak’s nuke movement is dangerous (even without firing due to T-ist issue). Covert operations by India can shake Pakistan so easily right now. Do you think India’ll sit and T-ist attacks.

Posted by rajeev | Report as abusive

“”"by having a caricatured view of Pakistan & blaming the whole nation, you are marginalizing the moderates & the liberals in Pakistani society”"”
—Liberals do not rule Pakistan, hence the reason.

Posted by rajeev | Report as abusive

Umair
“psycopath mentally ill”
—Huh? for what? using the net? is it proving to be counter-productive to pakistani’s? lol

“Next you will be flying on mars?”
—That’s advancement! not like you guys – committing suicide- hallucinating to end up in some perverted pleasure land – 72 virgins + 27 adolescent boys (sic)

Posted by Anup | Report as abusive

@Rajeev

Liberals are ruling Pakistan. Mr Musharraf was a liberal, and the current Pakistan People’s Party’s is a liberal, left-wing party.

But how would Indians know any of this as their level of knowledge about Pakistan is close to nil ?

@Mitchell

An opinion piece in Dawn does not make Pakistan guilty of everything, neither is the purpose of such pieces for them to be used as propaganda by hostile anti-Pakistan elements. An opinion piece can also be completely wrong, as it is true that Indian intelligence supports terrorists inside Pakistan, from Baloch groups to Pak-Taliban groups.

“Liberals are ruling Pakistan. Mr Musharraf was a liberal, and the current Pakistan People’s Party’s is a liberal, left-wing party.
But how would Indians know any of this as their level of knowledge about Pakistan is close to nil ?”"
- Posted by Bangash Khan

—Bangesh, in your post to Mitchell you say that article in Dawn is an opinion that could be wrong and does not mae Pakistan guility. So are you better than Dawn what you said above to me. We Indians enough of you and try to trust multiple sources of info, not just Indian media. In your Pakistan circles, isn’t it believed mullahs have influenced the Pakistani internal and external policies for a good reason they offer in many cases that they know about Sharia than the politicians. It is easier for Pakistan to control terrorists than to control hardcore religious Mullahs. This is the opinion of your own good journalists who want Pakistan progress and are not afraid to ask these questions, only that their views are rejected as opinions since you feel uncomfortable. I think you have forgotten LalMasjid siege so soon.

Posted by rajeev | Report as abusive

@Rajeev

You did not acknowledge that you were wrong in saying that liberals don’t rule Pakistan. You just jumped to another complaint.

Reading many news outlets about Pakistan, including Pakistani ones is not going to make you an expert on the country. Media is biased, sensationalist and suffers from groupthink.

Russia should come forward to help US and its allies to settle the matter in this region. They are the ones who started it all in 1978 and it has come this far. Russia did suffer in Chechnya and Dagestan recently. These issues will erupt again. This needs to be put to bed. Countries like Kyrgystan have to be told either they are with us in the war on terror or they are against us. This is a crucial period in the war on terror. India should allow US to operate from the Kashmir under its control. That place is very close to Afghanistan as well. With US operating from inside Indian controlled Kashmir, India can let the American see for themselves on what exactly going on and all the claims of rapes, pillage, plunder by the Indian military that Pakistanis have been claiming can be checked by a different observer. In fact the US should set up its camps on both Indian and Pakistani sides of Kashmir. It will kill insurgency inside Kashmir and will help zero in on the Taliban from inside India as well as from Afghanistan. India is going to lose Kashmir otherwise.