In Pakistan, bewilderment

May 6, 2011

Cyril Almeida at Dawn has written a powerful and anguished column about the bewilderment among many Pakistanis on discovering that Osama bin Laden had been hiding in Abbottabad, a garrison town in the heart of the country and home to the Pakistan Military Academy.

“It’s too frightening to make sense of. The world’s most-wanted terrorist. A man who triggered the longest war in American history. The terrorist mastermind the world’s only superpower has moved heaven and earth to track down. A decade of hunting. Hundreds of billions of dollars spent. The blood of countless Americans and others spilled. And when he was finally found, he was found wrapped in the bosom of the Pakistani security establishment.”

“Did they know he was here? Surely, they knew he was here? Nobody has come out and said it openly yet. It’s too early, the story still unfolding. Ask the question in private, though, and with hand on heart, no one will say anything but, yes, they knew he was there,” he wrote.  “Grim questions are etched on anxious faces, but so is fear of the answers. Proud men and women, people who love and serve their country, have cried as they connect yet another dot in the horrifying trajectory this country is on.”

The mixed messages given out in public or private after President Barack Obama announced on Monday that U.S. forces had flown unnoticed deep into  Pakistan and killed bin Laden, have left many dazed about what really happened. Had Pakistan at least helped in some way by providing the intelligence that  led to bin Laden? President Barack Obama had specifically mentioned counter-terrorism cooperation with Pakistan.  Or did Pakistanis have to face up to the possibility that the Americans had acted entirely alone — hoodwinking the country’s powerful army — and that perhaps, as Almeida writes, “they knew he was there”.

A government statement said that the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) agency ”had been sharing information with CIA and other friendly intelligence agencies since 2009″ about the compound where bin Laden was killed. But that statement, described by columnist Ejaz Haider as “nonsense at its most nonsensical” was even more confusing — if the ISI knew about the compound in 2009, why did it not take action?

Towards the end of the week, the “authorised” version of events filtered out from a briefing given by Pakistan Army chief General Ashfaq Pervez Kayani to senior Pakistani journalists.

Pakistan had not known in advance about the U.S. plans, but nor had it known that bin Laden was there, wrote Time magazine’s Omar Waraich, who had spoken to some of those present at the briefing. “Kayani was adamant that the Pakistanis had no idea that bin-Laden was hiding in Abbottabad. “We had no clear, actionable information on Osama bin-Laden,” he told the journalists. “If we had it, we would have acted ourselves. No one would have questioned our performance for ten years. It would have raised our international prestige.”

Najam Sethi at The Friday Times in his account of what appeared to be the same briefing, gave the first properly coherent explanation of how the United States and Pakistan had managed to square the circle of saying they had shared intelligence while acting alone.   It’s worth quoting at length, since in the weeks and months ahead, this is likely to be the story that will have to survive scrutiny if the two countries are to carry on working together — something both countries need to do in their own interests, irrespective of the distrust.

“Sometime in 2009, an ISI wiretap picked up a conversation in Arabic between a Sim card in Nowshera and another in Saudi Arabia. The conversation was brief and hinted at financial matters. This transcript was passed on to the CIA for processing. Three months later, in 2010, the same Sim woke up to another conversation in Arabic, this time from Peshawar to Saudi Arabia. Again, the transcript was passed on to the CIA. There were four other occasions that year when the same Sim was used, once from a location in Waziristan and the last one actually from the compound in Abbotabad, and all the transcripts and location details were passed on to the CIA. The ISI took the view that its Intel apparatus was focused on the Pashto or Punjabi speaking Taliban in FATA and elsewhere in the country and Arabic speaking Al-Qaeda terrorists were the responsibility of the CIA.

“Meanwhile, the CIA analysed the transcripts and followed all the clues until the last one led them to the compound in Abbotabad. When the CIA homed in on it in February via ground and satellite surveillance in 2011, it was convinced that a very high value target was living in it, possibly OBL. They found it unbelievable because of its location in the military’s backyard. The consensus view was that an exclusive and secret operation should be launched to get their man because the ISI couldn’t be trusted with a joint operation. The CIA just wasn’t sure whether the ISI was hiding OBL because it was the ISI that had provided the lead to the Sim card and transcripts that led the CIA to the compound in Abbotabad.

“This explains two statements made by senior US officials. President Obama said the operation benefited from “counterterrorism cooperation with Pakistan’s Intel agencies that led the CIA to the compound in which OBL was living”. The CIA chief said they couldn’t mount a joint operation because they didn’t want leaks in the ISI by rogue elements to jeopardize it.”

The explanation has an internal coherence and brings together the U.S. and Pakistani narratives that they had shared intelligence, even as the United States later acted alone.  It does not begin to give all the answers, but it does provide some useful details to work on.

 In 2010, for example, the ISI, according to this explanation, picked up a conversation in Arabic from a particular SIM card.  That same SIM card was used “once from a location in Waziristan and the last one actually from the compound in Abbottabad”.  It’s terribly easy to criticise other people’s mistakes in hindsight, but what would you conclude if you had a link between an Arabic speaker, Waziristan, and the compound?  Leave it to the CIA?

Or was this a question of an overworked junior officer failing to join the dots? With every new explanation we get, more questions need to be asked.

121 comments

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Myra wrote “Or was this a question of an overworked junior officer failing to join the dots?”

We have been waiting for Myra’s analysis. And she hasn’t disappointed. Along predictable lines!!

In the last 5 days, this is the best write up I have read (including pak media), where she has managed to slip in sufficient spin to give an impression ISI was not actually hoisting OBL, but just there must have beem some “intelligence
failure”.

Even if we accept this spin, letting OBL live right next to Pak military academy in a cantonment town demonstrates the incompetency of ISI/PA.

It is worthwhile to remember, after successfully launching Mumbai terrorist attacks, paks gloated to Indians on our incompetence on intellgence gathering.

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

The ISI is desperately trying to prove it’s innocence with a bunch of lies. I read in the stratfor file (provided on the other thread) that an ISI officer said that they had reported the Bin Laden house to the CIA back in 2004. When asked about this, the CIA said that the house did not exist until 2005 & before that it was just vacant land.

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive

Trust Myra to give the benefit of a non-existent doubt to the ISI.

Posted by SilverSw0rd | Report as abusive

ISI and CIA have worked together for decades, first in Soviet Afghan war, and after US invasion of Afghanistan in 2001. Similarlo, OBL was no stranger to the area, he had been around since 1980s, that time in Peshawar area and Afghanistan etc. All the players knew each other very well, CIA did no favor by getting a monster it created in first place.
Now that the operation is done, its aftermath is devastating in every way. The distrust between US and Pakistan is at its worst. People in Pakistan did not shed tears for OBL, nor does majority adhere to his veiws. But the way this covert operation was carried out is a humiliation and insult. It is for Pakistan military to review its cooperation with US.

The work of intelligence agencies is often painstakingly slow, they have to track, conduct surviellence, deploy resources, make a lot of effort in order to show progress on a single lead. This much should be understood, If CIA had sophisticated technology, it should share with allies.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive

“People in Pakistan did not shed tears for OBL”

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/video/20 11/may/04/bin-laden-protests-pakistan-vi deo

How many more lies Umair?

First your country claimed Bin Laden was not in Pakistan.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/12/04/world/ asia/04britain.html

Then with egg on the face, a claim was made that Pakistan did not know Bin Laden was hiding there:

http://blog.al.com/wire/2011/05/pakistan _we_did_not_know_osama.html

And there was enough intelligence available even during Musharraf’s time that
Bin Laden was hiding in Abbotabad.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/may  /05/osama-bin-laden-afghan-intelligence -abbottabad-lead

There is no use playing innocent. It is as obvious as the sun that Pakistan’s military and its ISI have worked hand in glove with Taliban and Al Qaeda. ISI kept Bin Laden in this safe house, just like it has in the case of other Al Qaeda leaders, Taliban leaders and Dawood Ibrahim.

Pakistan has become the Mecca of global Islamic terrorism. All terrorists and their acts abroad have been traced back to Pakistan till date. Pakistan is not fighting terrorism. It has bred it and nurtured it. It is pretending to be fighting terrorism because of American presence. It is playing the role of the arsonist on one side and is pretending to be a fire fighter at the same time. Pakistan made no sacrifice here. It is paying the price for what it has been doing surreptitiously.

Good try Myra and Umair.

Kindly do not try to cover up the stuff that has hit the ceiling fan. Just let it go. More embarrassment is coming. Brace for it. Myra must have struggled for a week or so after seeing Pakistan being exposed like this. So after a quiet period, one sees an article justifying Pakistan’s ridiculous excuses.

ISI has been hiding Bin Laden in Pakistan all these years. US now has taken all the tapes, hard drives and memory sticks. More truth will emerge.

I have nothing against you being proud of your country. But it has done evil things to the world. One cannot deny it at all costs. Truth is absolute.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

Suspicions are growing by the day.

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/07/world/ asia/07policy.html?_r=1&hp

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

When trying to add spin to the unfolding events, Author’s such a Myra should be careful not to use overdoeses for such events, which will make them bigger fools and destroys the credibility of the Author.

Once can understand people like umair arguing desperately for his country but its unreasonable for an author to add spin contrary to the common sense which is so evident of course unless they have thier own interests in their mind, which will allow them to take the risk on their credibility.

Even if one assumes ISI had passed on some information regarding OBL in the past, it may have been to secure themselves from the extreme criticism or to guard agaist heavy blowback if the Americans realized pakistan had been harbouring OBL all this long. They may claim innocence saying that “had it been so, why would we be sharing that little information on OBL?” . A sort of an alibi to rescue themselves from criticism from Internation Community.
The line had got even blurred between Myra and Pakistan establishment so much so that we may as well read Myra’s comments to understand the Pakistani Official line!

I wondered Pakistani state edifice is standing on three pillars of 3A’s the Army (military establishment which is the actual arbiter and only viable institution),Allah (using religion to unite people) and America (Not to lose america at any cost) but a fourth unseen pillar is of Hatred for India (literal hatred with no holds barred hatred reached with spin on historical, theological, cultural and what not) Now I think it has added another pillar and that is nurturing and abetting world’s most wanted people in order to blackmail foreign governments into submission. This is handy as it can frighten people into providing Aid and can push the existence of state a little longer. But this policy will only result in constant destabilisation and can never become a source of stablity for the state and region at large.

Posted by sensiblepatriot | Report as abusive

The question is that if the ISI realised in 2009 about the SIM card and passed it on because of Arabic content to the US on the ground that this was not concerning Taliban but the AQ, are we to infer that there was no responsibility with Pakistan about fighting the AQ? Sounds rather bizzare to me. I thought they had said that they too were in on the hunt for OBL. I thought they were allies in the fight against terror and not just limited to Pashto Punjabi speaking Taliban. (This is what I call terrific Afridi type spin). Even after the last transmission was picked up from Abbotabad, in the heart of a Pakistani garrison town, the ISE blithely passed it on. It did not bother them one bit or make them wary that something was brewing right under their very nose?

Yet the major question really has been untouched – 5 years??? Ejaz Haider is bang on the button ““nonsense at its most nonsensical”.

Lets face it, almost every major AQ guy caught so far has been hiding in Pakistan. If anyone doubts Pakistan’s involvement or proclaims non-involvement has a major credibility problem on their hands. Pakistan is a safe haven – or is that also still in doubt?

The fact is OBL was Pakistan’s insurance to continued dollars and weapons, why would they give him up and why wouldn’t they hide him? The reaction now in the US over aid to Pakistan is proof. With screws being tightened the claws are being bared.

Posted by DaraIndia | Report as abusive

Umair,

“But the way this covert operation was carried out is a humiliation and insult. It is for Pakistan military to review its cooperation with US.”
“This much should be understood, If CIA had sophisticated technology, it should share with allies”

This is amusing. Just 10 days ago you were gloatingly telling us how Pakistan has turned the tables on the US. What kind of allies are these? Each one seems to be in it only for what and how much one can squeeze out from the other.

Posted by DaraIndia | Report as abusive

1. After sacrificing our 32K civilians, and 5K soldiers and paramilitary/police men and bearing the burnt of being pushed to civil war, destroyed economically (just few days back our president quoted 68 billion $ loss due to this war), and handing over 100s of Al qaida men, this is what we get back? Just because it was 1 slip? I think it is more of local police matter to determine who lives where and according to recently published news in times, if US was spying on ground for few months, they might have known if somebody was supporting him or we might get to know from the hard drives and stuff seized after-all, why this rancor? why not wait for facts and stop speculate?

Posted by ftiger | Report as abusive

> Sometime in 2009, an ISI wiretap picked up a conversation in Arabic between a Sim card in Nowshera and another in Saudi Arabia. [...] Three months later, in 2010, the same Sim woke up to another conversation in Arabic, this time from Peshawar to Saudi Arabia.

The obvious question: Who’s on the Saudi end? That’s another “ally”, right?

Regards,
Ganesh Prasad

Posted by prasadgc | Report as abusive

Our Balochi brothers have some ideas:

http://my.news.yahoo.com/us-must-lie-det ector-terrorist-general-pasha-locate-090 806626.html

‘US must use ‘lie detector’ on ‘terrorist general’ Pasha to locate Qaeda links’
By ANI | ANI – Sat, May 7, 2011

Washington, May 7(ANI): The United States should arrest Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) chief Lieutenant General Ahmad Shuja Pasha and Pakistan’s Ambassador to Washington, Husain Haqqani, and use polygraph test on both to determine their role in shielding Al Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden, the American Friends of Balochistan (AFB) has said.

The Al Qaeda founder, who had evaded capture for a decade, was killed in a top secret operation involving a small team of US Special Forces in Abbottabad city, located 50 kilometres northeast of Islamabad and 150 kilometres east of Peshawar.

Expressing anguish over Pasha’s ongoing visit to Washington to explain Pakistan’s position on the presence of Bin Laden in the country before he was killed in a US operation on May 2, the AFB asked American law enforcement agencies to arrest him for questioning his role in protecting the world’ most wanted terrorist.

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

If ISI has picked up clues about OBL in another country and passed it on to the CIA a few years ago, that would make sense. ISI does not have legal authority in a foreign country. But the intelligence information was about a possible hideout inside their own country. Why would they simply alert the CIA about it and wait for them to take their own action? Shouldn’t Pakistan conducted house to house search in Abbotabad itself? The CIA could zero in on the whereabouts of the criminal and set up a safe house across the street and watch all activities going on. The ISI could train David Coleman Headley on reconnaissance, spotting contacts, establishing links, run survey, train people commando style, and launch them into a foreign country to take out innocent lives. But somehow, it just never knew that Bin Laden was living in a compound that sticks out like a sore thumb in the area, for five odd years, while the CIA could. Kindly spin a better story for public consumption.

The only thing that is clear to everyone other than Pakistanis and their sympathizers is that Pakistan’s military and the ISI have been hiding and protecting all key criminals as much and as long as possible. Whenever they sensed that the CIA got wind of one of the criminals, the ISI washed them off and simply handed him over to the Americans to erase their tracks. If they had sensed that the CIA was zeroing in on OBL, they would have raided his place and handed him over as well. This way they get pats on the back, while taking a chance at the same time. What if the Americans give up the hunt due to domestic pressure? Then Bin Laden could be unleashed without worries.But that gamble did not pay off. The CIA had stopped trusting the ISI and went on its own mission. All the embarrassment arises from this scenario. Bin Laden was a source for American dollars. Something like 20 billion dollars have been poured into Pakistan in this hunt. Why not take that money for as long as it takes? All the sacrifices and soldiers lives is all talk. Musharraf abandoned all his soldiers in Kargil and simply declared no Pak soldier was involved. Many years later the liar admitted the truth. In Pakistan, soldier’s life is not valuable to the military cartel. They sacrificed them in order to protect their duplicity.

I am so glad that Pakistan has been exposed. This impression is very deep and Pakistan will be made to pay for it. It is better if they give up the other criminals sooner rather than latter. Everyone knows for certain that the ISI is hiding all the terrorist leaders. Time, unfortunately, is not going to be on their hands.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

If ISI has picked up clues about OBL in another country and passed it on to the CIA a few years ago, that would make sense. ISI does not have legal authority in a foreign country. But the intelligence information was about a possible hideout inside their own country. Why would they simply alert the CIA about it and wait for them to take their own action? Shouldn’t Pakistan conducted house to house search in Abbotabad itself? The CIA could zero in on the whereabouts of the criminal and set up a safe house across the street and watch all activities going on. The ISI could train David Coleman Headley on reconnaissance, spotting contacts, establishing links, run survey, train people commando style, and launch them into a foreign country to take out innocent lives. But somehow, it just never knew that Bin Laden was living in a compound that sticks out like a sore thumb in the area, for five odd years, while the CIA could. Kindly spin a better story for public consumption.

The only thing that is clear to everyone other than Pakistanis and their sympathizers is that Pakistan’s military and the ISI have been hiding and protecting all key criminals as much and as long as possible. Whenever they sensed that the CIA got wind of one of the criminals, the ISI washed them off and simply handed him over to the Americans to erase their tracks. If they had sensed that the CIA was zeroing in on OBL, they would have raided his place and handed him over as well. This way they get pats on the back, while taking a chance at the same time. What if the Americans give up the hunt due to domestic pressure? Then Bin Laden could be unleashed without worries.But that gamble did not pay off. The CIA had stopped trusting the ISI and went on its own mission. All the embarrassment arises from this scenario. Bin Laden was a source for American dollars. Something like 20 billion dollars have been poured into Pakistan in this hunt. Why not take that money for as long as it takes? All the sacrifices and soldiers lives is all talk. Musharraf abandoned all his soldiers in Kargil and simply declared no Pak soldier was involved. Many years later the liar admitted the truth. In Pakistan, soldier’s life is not valuable to the military cartel. They sacrificed them in order to protect their duplicity.

I am so glad that Pakistan has been exposed. This impression is very deep and Pakistan will be made to pay for it. It is better if they give up the other criminals sooner rather than latter. Everyone knows for certain that the ISI is hiding all the terrorist leaders. Time, unfortunately, is not going to be on their hands.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

Well Guys,
This is one of the best book I’ve ever read on India and pakistan. Its not the routine pakistan bashing book but a good collection of well composed articles by respected Authors.
http://www.infibeam.com/Books/info/ira-p ande/great-divide-india-pakistan/9788172 238360.html

One of the Auther points that, is it possible for Pakistan to transform its relationship vis-a-vis India into a more progressive and sucular form of Hatred! Put it simply can it be turned into more of an adversarial relationship of nation building saying “we can do better than you” rather than “we are already better than you”.
Indeed some of the statistics for Pakistan are better than India like child malnourishment or Incidence of Hunger. But then I am a bit pessimistic on that because the hatred shown by Pakistani state is to allow the continued entrechment the deep state combined by Military-feudal-religious class which wanted to precide over a nation as thelogical lords reigning over the people and India is only a tool for scare mongering.

The reason for Pakistani state’s hatred for India may well be this bluff. The lie created out of scare mongering where the real agenda is only to continue their lordship of hapless people.

Many pakistani’s seem to wonder why Indians show so much hatred for Pakistan, so let’s make once and for all clear that the hatred is because of the involvement in Indian affairs (honestly its not limited to kashmir) had the pakistan destroyed theier culture (well they already done), weakened democratic institutions (completed a long ago) and radicalising their youth (happening at rapid pace) we Indians we not have cared much and wont give two hoots for them ,but only for the attacks that are directed against us.
We already have the problems of poverty, corruption and even honour killings are we are not shameful to admit it. But is extremely frustrated with the cross border terrorism which is hampering the national building process.

Posted by sensiblepatriot | Report as abusive

KP, The capture of the OBL may well be the blessing in disguise for Pakistan. Lets see this in a slightly different angle.
1. The pakistanis may well have realized that Obama might not be a war time president like the George Cowboy bush. So they started realizing the nature of endgame in Afghanistan and come to terms with the possibility that Americans may not pusue the combat operations well into the future.
2. Given the above scenario, they have started thinking of a case that if the Americans were to leave Afghanistan, it will be back to square-one for them and they may not get the Aid which they are so addicted to now.
3.Their interest lay in handing over the terror groups which may already lost operational capabilities on the terror front. Alqaida fits the bill extremely well, with little operational capabilities in Afghanistan and limited ability to hit pakistan itself, Pakistanis must have realized that this must be the group which is expendable. And we’ve seen leaders being captured to be given to Americans.
4.The same reason why tehrike taliban (pakistan) is pursued so strongly bcoz it hits the Pakistan interests and on the other hand kayani is stubborn not to act against haqqani’s or LET bcoz they still have utility with regards to Afghanistan and India respectively.
5.Finally, The American discourse in the war is about to shift to probably a counter-terrorism war rather than counter-insurgency war.
http://blogs.timesofindia.indiatimes.com  /Globespotting/entry/what-could-be-a-ne w-afghan-strategy
which means the Pakistanis continue to create,nurture terrorists and send them to Afghnistan while Americans pay Pakistan still some Aid for target practice and real time training for their young blokes.
And unfortunately whether one accepts or not US may never declare Pakistan a rogue state for fear of complete closure of ties with a nuclear armed country(aka Iran) of 180 million people who it could have some leverage and the fear of that leverage handing it over to chinese.
The only flaw in this seemingly flawless pakistan’s double game is that with fast weakening of the Pakistan’s economy and the slide is real serious this time,a strategic decision needs to be made earlier and need to be made now. Despite american aid, the country is sliding to a point of no return. The same scenario that played in 1999 just when musharaff camne and gave almost 6 years of good growth before the pakistan begun their new belligerence against India and the world.

Posted by sensiblepatriot | Report as abusive

The capture of OBL might have been most embarrassing for pakistan, but it will in long term only hasten the end game in Afghanistan. They might have plans to dump him eventually but were not expecting the way it unravelled on early hours on Monday. With the capture of OBL, Pakistan maight have a lot of leverage in Afghan political structure in the future and strangely though, if India finds that structure too Anti-India, it will have to resort to supporting the Norther Alliance to destablise that edifice.

Posted by sensiblepatriot | Report as abusive

I call BS. As somebody who has worked in the allied intelligence community and used real, actionable intelligence, I find it incredibly suspicious that mere transcripts from two phone calls (probably in coded talk), would trigger an entire investigation. At best, the Pakistani contribution was tangential to the hunt.

I know the Pakistanis have to save face and to do that they have to insist that they contributed. The reality says otherwise.

A key clue on the level of the trust is the raid itself. If the Americans had a modicum of trust for Pakistan, they would not have risked exposing a stealth helicopter that has not even been revealed in the US. Risking such assets simply to cover the raid, simply shows that the US had zero intention of sharing anything with Pakistan or that Pakistan even knew what was going on.

President Obama was simply being polite and trying to help Pakistan save face.

Posted by kEiThZ | Report as abusive

@ Umair

You speak of distrust. That was there long before this raid. You (and even media persons like Myra) have no idea what is said and known about Pakistan behind closed doors. Consider this raid, just a brief glimpse into the real opinion of decision makers (and I don’t just mean the US) around the world vis-a-vis Pakistan.

This is now well beyond Afghanistan. I daresay that governments in the West have accepted that Afghanistan is largely a lost cause. They’ll find a face-saving exit and get out. But nobody should think for a second that they are going to forget about Pakistan’s treachery. You can bet that a very long-term plan is being concocted to deal with Pakistan over the next few decades.

And as long as elements of the Pakistani state believe that it’s acceptable to use terrorists, than the Pakistani state will be fair game. Pakistanis will brag about their nukes and be fixated on them, of course. Silly Pakistanis have never understood that economic and diplomatic isolation is far more dangerous than the Indian bull to their south. Yet, this is exactly what they will have brought upon themselves.

Aid will dry up. Yet nobody will want to do business with Pakistan. What multi-national will want to post employees in Jihad Central? Nobody is ever going to believe Pakistan on anything. Every time a mouse farts in India, they’ll be able to blame Pakistan and the world will accept it. After all, that was the country that hid Bin Laden down the street from their military college, while loudly proclaiming that he wasn’t in the country. Official positions on Kashmir will change over time to support India. After all, how credible is Pakistan when they are harbouring terrorists who kill our citizens and soldiers trying to stabilize the country next door? India must be right about them. On and on it goes. You see, what Pakistanis don’t understand is that those “strategic assets” are proving to be a strategic failure because they are creating a massive strategic vulnerability for Pakistan. They are a giant PR problem, an internally destabilizing force and a force which serves to destabilizes a weaker neighbour next door, and antagonize a larger one on the other side.

There’s a way out. Reverse course. Forget India. Stabilize Pakistan itself. Sincerely pursue all anti-Afghanistan and anti-India groups (LeT, Haqqanis, Taliban, etc.). Will Pakistan do it? I doubt it. And that’s the truly, truly sad part.

Posted by kEiThZ | Report as abusive

Myra,

I think more focus should be given on the implications of the raid. It’s clear the Americans aren’t going to stop. You can bet that if they find Zawahiri in Pakistan, they’ll be going after him too. Haqqanis? Solid lead and you can bet that they’ll be paid a visit by a bunch of Deltas or SEALs.

Pakistan will of course, now try to beef up it’s surveillance of the Afghan border to try and catch intruding US forces. But it’s not at all clear that they have enough capabilities to detect such an intrusion.

And then there’s India. If it’s okay for the US, why is it not okay for India to go in and do the same, the next time a train goes boom in a major Indian city? Of course, the Indians won’t declare their efforts publicly. But surely, it’ll be very difficult to argue against a similar Indian action, particularly given the recent penchant by Pakistan-based anti-India groups, for targeting Westerners in India.

I’m deeply worried about this. It’s the kind of stuff that leads to escalating conflicts.

Posted by kEiThZ | Report as abusive

I have proved to myself as I am sure most of us have many times before the last place we find something we looking diligently for is right in front of us,like looking all over the house your glasses that where sitting on top of head all along or the car keys that where in the other pocket instead of the one you usually put them .Very simple simple but true in many circumstances.Not everything in this world has to be a conspiracy ,though it makes for a better mystery.Though I must also say after all it is politics.

Posted by Invictus247 | Report as abusive

Another Pakistani lie which has been exposed in the last few days is all their posturing regarding the US aid. Over the last few years, the Pakistanis have tried to act like they don’t care about the aid & it’s not worth the lives of Pakistani soldiers etc. As it now turns out, it is ALL about the aid. Now that the aid is in some jeopardy, they seem to be scrambling & hustling to protect it.

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive

Oh well. May be it is time now for the West/US to abandon the racist, hypocritic policy that pakistani terrorism on Indian civilians should not be taken as seriously as terrorism on westerners.

http://tinyurl.com/3hnbc7h

Three chiefs of Lashkar-i-Taiba, the Pakistani terrorist group, were also indicted in Chicago. They include Sajid Mir, a suspected Mumbai mastermind whose voice was caught on tape directing the three-day slaughter by phone from Pakistan. Mir, too, has ISI links. He remains at large along with the suspected ISI major and half a dozen other top suspects.

Despite the unprecedented terrorism charges implicating a Pakistani officer, the Justice Department and other agencies did not issue news releases, hold a news conference or make any comments when the indictment was issued. The 33-page document names the suspect only as “Major Iqbal.” It does not mention the ISI, although Iqbal’s affiliation to the spy agency has been detailed in U.S. and Indian case files and by anti-terrorism officials in interviews with ProPublica over the past year.

>>>>>>>“Obviously there has been a push to be low-key,” said an Obama administration official who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the pending trial.

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

The old game has started. Todays news in the TOI mentions Pak troops on high alert along the LOC with Indiar because of what Pakistan sees as threats based on what senior military officials in India said about India having capability to launch similar strikes. Well, whats new? Next week this time the hysteria will have been built up and you will have Zardari and Gillani making stirring speeches of shedding their last drop of blood etc etc. And then take the next flight to France!

Too old a story to have any effect anymore. But it shows a mindset which has developed through pushing the threat from India like it were religion. No one cares to ask why if India was so willing and keen to mount attacks in Pakistan, it hasn’t all these years when Pakistan has been at its most vulnerable? But then asking that question would to Quote Ayaz Amir, speaking in another context, be against everything Pakistan stands for:

“…..and we’ll keep subscribing to theories of Indian hostility and encirclement, because these are the foundations on which stands the peculiar national security state we have constructed, forever threatened and insecure…..

Our ruling establishment is too set in its ways and, sadly, the roots of national stupidity run too deep.

And perish the thought of anyone taking responsibility and throwing in his papers. That’s just not the Pakistani way.”

http://www.thenews.com.pk/TodaysPrintDet ail.aspx?ID=45440&Cat=9&dt=5/6/2011

Posted by DaraIndia | Report as abusive

Keith:
“As somebody who has worked in the allied intelligence community and used real, actionable intelligence, I find it incredibly suspicious that mere transcripts from two phone calls (probably in coded talk), would trigger an entire investigation. At best, the Pakistani contribution was tangential to the hunt.”

-Keith, Pakistan has given termendous sacrifice in the war on terror, I have highlighted before the over 3000 officers and men who sacrificed their lives in this war. Try to understand, the history, the containers of weapons shipped to Karachi port by CIA. ISI shipped it to the frontlines and an Soviet-Afghan war where all it began. The roots of a troubled US-Pakistan relationship lies in those fateful years of Afghan war in the 80s, the US later became a superpower and Pakistan became mired in the problems. Unfortunately, despite all that Pakistan is not considered an ally, and decisionmakers in Pakistan are not kids, they know it.

“You (and even media persons like Myra) have no idea what is said and known about Pakistan behind closed doors.”

-Ok, it is that Pakistan is demonized, but as a Pakistani I know who was John Stockwell, I know he was part CIA task force Angola 1975, Operation IA Feature, funding both sides of conflicts, that is just one example of CIA interventions overseas. I know he wrote “In search of enemies”. All intelligence agencies have some dirty secrets, its just that Pakistan is being pursued now. That is what feed the conspiracy theorists, propagandists, and fuel insecurity.

Now that the war in Afghanistan is being lost, there will be an attempt again to abandon Afghanistan, save face and blame everything on Pakistan. We have been betrayed before, Pakistan will be ready for another betrayal and face it courageously. Aid should dry up, i hope it acts as a spur and Pakistan succeeds in creating a sustainable economy and attain dignity.

“There’s a way out. Reverse course. Forget India. Stabilize Pakistan itself. Sincerely pursue all anti-Afghanistan and anti-India groups (LeT, Haqqanis, Taliban, etc.). Will Pakistan do it? I doubt it. And that’s the truly, truly sad part.”

-There is no way out of the mess we have been pushed into by so called “allies”, can’t forget India, they dismembered Pakistan in 1971, at first opportunity they will do it again, can’t let the guard down. PA already moving against HQN, LET, Taliban via step by step approach.

“Pakistan will of course, now try to beef up it’s surveillance of the Afghan border to try and catch intruding US forces. But it’s not at all clear that they have enough capabilities to detect such an intrusion.”

-I can tell you, Pakistan Armed Forces had always thought we have our allies on the western border with Afghanistan, that has changed. But tell you what, next time a SEAL team breaches the border from west, rest assured they will be kissed by a sidewinder from a PAF F-16. And you know the black hawk down raid in Somalia, a botched up attempt to capture warlord Farah Aidid, and Pakistan Army rescued the stranded US special forces team. Your worries are correct, deep down your heart you know the capability of Pakistan military.

“And then there’s India. If it’s okay for the US, why is it not okay for India to go in and do the same, the next time a train goes boom in a major Indian city? Of course, the Indians won’t declare their efforts publicly. But surely, it’ll be very difficult to argue against a similar Indian action, particularly given the recent penchant by Pakistan-based anti-India groups, for targeting Westerners in India.”

-Sir, before we come to that point, I am sure GHQ and Air Headquarter will order to shoot down a drone or intruding forces anywhere to set a precedent. The strategic implications of this raid were discussed in latest ISPR statement after the corps commander conference, and India has already been warned. Any botched up attempt, any more stupid attempt to sieze Pakistan nukes would be dangerous. You never know how a cornered tiger could react. Even then if someone is stupid, sure they can go ahead and be our guest any time and pay us a visit. We will leave no effort in our famed hospitality, pathan style if you know what i mean.

“I’m deeply worried about this. It’s the kind of stuff that leads to escalating conflicts.”

-You should be rightly, afterall not a good idea to mess with a nuclear armed Muslim nation of 200 million people. Believe me, an isolated and humiliated, betrayed Pakistan could react irrationally. And after 1971 Pakistan has nothing to loose, rest assured similar act from India will lead to an all out war.

Lastly, Keith we have had many discussions before, but I would conclude, surely there are crises ahead for Pakistan. Not something new for us, but hopefully we will muddle through them. But never forget the betrayals. You keep harping about Pakistan’s treachery. Maybe we were never destined to be friends. Not after 3000 PA officers and men embracing martyrdom in “war on (t)error”, not at the expense of their blood.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive

Keith,

Pakistan Air Force conducted a country-wide exercise “High Mark 2010″ last year. Entire Air Force and elements of the Army in the country’s biggest military exercise, we are getting back to the old days of Soviet-Afghan war here. It is only a matter of time before things get ugly.

Another thing, when US had the window they did not fix their differences with Iran in 1979. Pakistan too will be lost, and also there is the issue of logistics. If anything, Pakistan can stop the logistic supply line to US/NATO forces. We can’t allow to feed an Army that sneaks into Pakistan overnight like petty thieves and make a mockery of our security forces.

Having stated that, Pakistan though should strictly follow UN security council resolution 1373, control its territory, eliminate non-state actors/terrorist groups and after that shoot down any foreign intruding forces.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7HDIiJbqQ IM
Highmark 2010

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive

Keith

I am sure Pakistan would also be closely examining the tail section of the operational stealth helicopter and will be extending cooperation with China. Pakistan and china jointly develop fighter jets and tanks already. Finally, I would conclude by not sharing intelligence on OBL and conducting a covert op, US may have committed a “strategic blunder”.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive

Navy SEALs Used Secret Stealth Helicopter in OBL Raid

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gfr2PSTGt Nw

US worried pieces of stealth chopper on their way to China already, after developing a stealth fighter jet, how soon will China develop a stealth chopper. and specially when Pakistan and China are known for reverse engineering how soon will PAKISTAN

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive

TIT FOR TAT

US demands identities of top ISI operatives
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/07/world/ asia/07policy.html?ref=asia

Pakistan reveals name of CIA station chief Islamabad Mark Carlton
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world  /us/Pakistan-breaches-trust-names-local -CIA-boss/articleshow/8191679.cms

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive

The thumping has started already :)

Posted by DaraIndia | Report as abusive

http://www.thehindu.com/opinion/lead/art icle1994245.ece?homepage=true

Sadly the American imperialists are unwilling to learn from their follies.
continuing with more aid to Pakistan, and persisting with same failed policies.

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

“The thumping has started already :)

–Posted by DaraIndia

Exactly same thing happened right after Raymond Davis was caught. Chest thumping is so in the Blood of Pakistanis.

This reminds me of “Achmed, the Dead terrorist”.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1uwOL4rB- go

Posted by punjabiyar | Report as abusive

“But tell you what, next time a SEAL team breaches the border from west, rest assured they will be kissed by a sidewinder from a PAF F-16.” Posted by Umairpk

Do you ever tire from empty chest thumping? I remember, a few months ago when a US strike had killed some Pakistani soldiers, you & your “brave” army had thumped your breasts hard & declared “the next time the US does an operation like this again we’ll do this, we’ll do that blah blah blah”. What happened? Navy seals flew in from Kandahar, violated your airspace & took out your most “valuable asset” in an operation which took app. 2 hrs, while your wily security forces was caught sleeping at the wheel. Despite all you hollow bravado, exactly how many drones or US planes/choppers has your army downed? ZIP. The world is laughing at you guys but instead of being humble & taking corrective measures, you are again doing, what you do best – breast thumping. You guys are nothing but farts in the wind, you make some noise & stink up the place but that’s pretty much it.

“US worried pieces of stealth chopper on their way to China already, after developing a stealth fighter jet, how soon will China develop a stealth chopper. and specially when Pakistan and China are known for reverse engineering”

Yes we know, you guys are well known cheats. Your nuclear program is a testament to that. Good luck developing the stealth chopper with the help of a few burnt up blades because from what I’ve heard, the body of the chopper was completely burnt.

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive

Until the war in Afghanistan is completed, Pakistan will be needed. So Pakistan will need to do everything it can to delay the settlement in Afghanistan. They have. They have hidden OBL and all the key criminals for over ten years and stretched this war for as long as they could. A smart President arrived and he began to connect the dots quickly. He knows now that Pakistan is the real villain and not Taliban or Al Qaeda.They can be contained and decimated easily. But Pakistan has used its deceptive methods to come in between, tried to play as a conduit and has taken all the resources for its own benefit. This is how bandit lords operate. They place themselves in the path of caravans and manage bandits to intimidate the caravans, so that traders would have to pay up in order to get through. So the US has decided to take on the bandit lord himself. OBL’s killing is only the beginning. The swift operation took everyone by surprise, including the crooks in Islamabad. They must be really nervous because they will be wondering what the next move will be. The US probably has leads to the other criminals as well. And they are going to knock them out one by one, right in front of the Pakistanis. At the end of this long movie, the bad guys are about to lose.
Chest thumping will not change a thing.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

Now the diplomatic dance between Manmohan Singh and Geelani is not going to go anywhere. With complete lack of trust in Pakistan, one cannot be sure of their ulterior motives. Hope we do not cheat ourselves by reaching out to shadows.

Musharraf must be indicted and tried in a US court. I am sure he set up all double dealing infrastructure when WOT started. He must have arranged for hiding all Al Qaeda and Taliban criminals. He is such a liar that they will need to use lie detectors when he answers questions.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

Suspects are slowly emerging:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india  /Who-sheltered-Osama-bin-Laden-Kayani-a mong-suspects/articleshow/8200678.cms

Some want heads to roll:

http://www.dawn.com/2011/05/08/time-for- heads-to-roll.html

This splattered egg is going to be difficult to wipe off.

Behind the scenes, the US might already been collecting information on who all have been involved.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

KPSingh,
This news confirms assessments that Kayani is hard core fundamentalist Islamist. It will be fun to see who betrays who within the top echleons of PA/ISI.

I hope the Mumbai trial starting on May 16th will shed more light on how Pasha and Kayani were directly involved in terrorism.

I’ve been posting here we will never find out a power point presentation of Kayani going over the operational details of Mumbai train station and Taj Hotel before lauching the terrorist attack.

Now I feel more optimistic, may be we”ll find something like that :-)

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

Netizen said:

> This news confirms assessments that Kayani is hard core fundamentalist Islamist.

He doesn’t have to be a fundamentalist Islamist. By his own admisssion, he is “India-centric”, in other words, an India-hater. He’s probably a US hater as well. That is sufficient to explain all his actions as ISI chief (support for LeT, Osama, Haqqani, etc.)

Regards,
Ganesh Prasad

Posted by prasadgc | Report as abusive

I have a feeling that the US authorities have plenty of evidence regarding Pakistan’s complicity in hiding Bin Laden from the treasure of information retrieved from the compound. They are waiting for the right moment to release it to the world, if & when necessary. They will try to convince/coerce Pakistan to mend it’s ways & if they’re unable to do so, the smoking gun will be revealed to the world.

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive

@GP, I agree.

C Raja Mohan has penned a masterpiece on potential coup scenarios in Pakistan. This may be a great opportunity to completely expose PA/ISI.

or will China play spoil sport and decide to prop up Pakistan Army against, the rest of the world?

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/pakist ans-next-coup/787782/4

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

Umair:
My personal opinion is that you are on the wrong track. In every matter. I say this solely based on one of your statements:
“And after 1971 Pakistan has nothing to loose, rest assured similar act from India will lead to an all out war.”
This statement is so naive, and proves that you really don’t get “it”. The fact is, you have EVERYTHING to lose. Most importantly, you will lose your future. No matter what response you have to my claim, fact will be that you would have destroyed your country. This should not be acceptable under any circumstances. Your rationale is that of a suicide bomber. It wouldn’t even matter that you took the other guy down with you. Sadly, I think your leaders (army) in your country have the same way of looking at things.
I think you need to understand the concept of Opportunity Cost. There is a cost associated with every decision, a cost related to something else you could have done. In this pursuit of strategic depth/defense (whatever you want call it), what has been the opportunity cost for Pak? You have given away your economic prospects, your country’s integrity & reputation, your country’s safety, and have jeopardized its future.
Perfect example: You boast about giving away American tech (stealth chopper) to the Chinese. What is the opportunity cost here for you? The cost is the relationship with the country that has been your biggest donor for the past decade. The cost is the relationship with a country that is your biggest trade partner and customer (go check world bank figures). I know the general arguments to my claims. You’ll say, we deserve even more for our efforts. But hey, look around you, no one is stepping up to the plate – not even China. Your attitude of raising your chin at the rest of the world (especially the US)is not doing you any favors. Wake up.

Posted by rainydays | Report as abusive

A state that was founded on the basis of religion alone in modern times, that has a long history of dictatorship & martial law, whose left hand (present ‘democratically’ elected government) doesn’t know what it’s right hand (the army & the ISI) is doing; besides Pakistan exports terrorism as state policy & much of the nation is bound only by religious fundamentalism & a common hate for India, Israel etc.

Now here comes the worlds greatest democracy, the US, gives the Pakis aid – much of which is diverted to export terrorism to the West & India (incidentally the world’s largest democracy) and the Americans are still surprised to find OBL holed up in Pakistan! What a sick joke!!

Posted by job_charnock | Report as abusive

Pakistan’s lobbyists launch Washington D.C. charm offensive

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2011/05/0 9/politics/main20060975.shtml

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive

“Pakistan-U.S. Rift Widens”

In a few days time the trial of the Mumbai attack planners will start in Chicago. There ISI’s involvment is going to be brought to light.

Pakistan cannot retaliate. It is not in a position to do so. Intelligence people are working round the clock, sifting through the material taken from Bin Laden’s enclave inside Pakistan. Who knows what more will expose Pakistan?

Kayani was heading the ISI when Bin Laden moved into his Abbotabad residence. He was succeeded by Nadeem Taj who was a radicalized lunatic. Mumbai attacks happened during his time, while Kayani now was the chief of the military. Connect the dots.

Pak military and ISI are the real villains. They are the foundations of global Islamic terrorism. The US is only looking for more evidence to confirm this fact. So far, Pak military/ISI have managed to cover the tracks. But it is not something that can be done for too long. They are going to face the barrel of the gun if they act with arrogance.

It is time to clean up the system by firing all these crooks and starting off with a fresh set of open minded and liberal personnel who want to start on a fresh note. This will mean undoing everything that has been invested in the Jihadi infrastructure. They are irrelevant after the Soviet defeat in Afghanistan. It simply won’t work in today’s world.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

Umair,

You are so defensive. I understand that your national pride is hurt. But I’m not going to follow you down that rabbit hole. My opinion here is for more than just your benefit.

But I will address some of your arguments:

1) The sacrifice of Pakistanis in the “War on Terror”. Nobody is questioning the sacrifice of Pakistanis. What I suggested was that Pakistanis contributed very little in getting Bin Laden. Your injured pride led you to jump to the wrong conclusion.

2) Pakistan is not demonized behind closed doors. I’m sorry if I gave that impression. But it’s quite clear to the rest of us that there is an element of the Pakistani elite (military and civilian) that’s willing to harbour terrorists at any cost. The Pakistani people are simply collateral in the emerging conflict with this elite. And, westerners, now fully understand the difference between the Pakistani public and the elites of Rawalpindi (though it should be said that not all of the Pakistani military establishment favours conflict with India or the harbouring of terrorists).

3) Forget India. I don’t mean forget about defending against them (1971 and all that). I meant forget about trying to get revenge. It is this thirst for revenge that is driving Pakistani security policy, not a fear of India. Fear of India would lead to a sound defence policy. Thirst for revenge leads to irrational decisions to support terrorists even when they are killing Pakistanis, in the hopes that they might kill a handful of Indians some day. To quote Golda Meir, “We will have peace when they love their children more than they hate us.”

4) Shooting down US intruders. I find it laughable that you think the PAF will even see a US helicopter on their radars (you obviously don’t know the limits of radar technology, especially in the moutains of the Hindu Kush), and that you believe that a Sidewinder will be able to take down a helicopter stuffed to the gills with defensive aids to defeat incoming missiles (whose seeker profile the US military is fully cognizant of). Your chest-thumping aside. I’m not even American and I know. The US will risk their entire armed forces for one US citizen. That’s why it means something to be an American. What do you think they’ll do if that citizen was wearing a uniform? I have no doubt your generals understand that too. They won’t be shooting down any US helicopters any time soon. They might try to intercept them though and prevent them from carrying out any raids though. Drones they might shoot down. Don’t let your pride overcome your logic. My comment was aimed at the wider audience. What is the implication of knowing that Pakistan might (or will) attempt to limit or stop some raids?

5) If the Pakistani GHQ is an unimaginative as you, the Indians are going to have a field day demolishing terror groups in Pakistan. Then again, the first reaction to a raid from Afghanistan is to place forces along the Indian border on high alert. So maybe the GHQ is really ignorant. If you were an Indian planner why would you send the choppers in from Rajasthan or Punjab, knowing the Pakistanis are watching for intrusions from here? I’d send them out over the Arabian sea and after a refuelling, low-level through Iran, Afghanistan and over Pakistan’s Western border. Or I’d simply send in RAW undercover. If the ISI can’t find the world’s most wanted man, 700m from a military college, what’s the chance they’ll be able to catch a bunch of RAW agents that can easily blend in to the local population? My question however was aimed at the wider audience. More specifically, how can the West condemn India, after this raid? We, in the West, might chide India for raising tensions and all that. But here on in, nobody is really going to seriously pressure India for taking on terrorists hiding out in Pakistan. Especially if those terrorists also kill Western citizens. There will just be token statements about stability in South Asia and avoiding the escalation of tensions. Etc. Though, if the Indians are really smart, they’ll take out their enemies and never claim credit for it, denying Pakistan the ability to make claims against India. Kinda like Mossad’s policies of ambiguity.

6) The stealth chopper on its way to China. I’m curious to see what the Chinese will do with only the tail. I’m an aerospace engineer by training. There’s nothing I see there that would give away any big secrets to the Chinese. Oooh, angled surfaces reduce radar cross-section. The good stuff was all reduced to ash by the thermite grenades. And you’re assuming the US hasn’t already insisted on its property being returned in exchange for not cutting a billion or two off the air schedule.

7) Your nukes. Blah blah blah. Nobody cares anymore. You silly Pakistanis never learned from the Soviets despite helping to defeat them. They had a massive nuclear arsenal too. Guess where it got them. To paraphrase Bill Clinton, “It’s the economy stupid!” Pakistanis will do anything to protect the nukes while the country withers away economically. All the Indians have to do is increase defence spending by 1-2% of GDP and Pakistan will starve itself into oblivion trying to keep up. The greatest enemy of Pakistan are Pakistanis themselves. Sadly, this prediction is coming true. Ronald Reagan’s wisdom is at work in South Asia. Not because the Indians want to harm Pakistan, but because they must raise defence spending to keep up with Pakistan’s ally: China. So in the end, Chinese antagonism towards India is screwing over Pakistan, all while the Pakistanis believe that China it their all-weather friend bringing them sunshine, rainbows and unicorns. Isn’t the circle of life wonderful? And while you complain about the US, guess whose money is helping you keep parity while not starving.

8) Giving up the name of the CIA station chief. Big deal. He’ll be on his way home to Washington, and another guy will be in place soon enough. Such is life. These kinds of moves, are diplomatic games, for public consumption. Do you really believe that passing out the name of the CIA station chief is going to have a big impact? All that will accomplish is further demonstrate how unreliable Pakistanis are. If they can’t keep the name of the station chief secret, why would you trust them with the address of Al Qaeda’s leader? “We were going to get them in on Zawahiri next month, but….”

All this, is why I have said, that Pakistan needs to get out of its anti-India mentality and focus internally. This anti-india policy is leading to irrational decision-making that isn’t even in the long-term best interest of Pakistan and Pakistanis. Seriously. Tell me what Pakistan would do if there was no aid coming in? How would Pakistan cope economically? And what’s the plan to keep up with India if they keep raising defence spending at 10%or more every year? These are questions that need urgent answers. The war in Afghanistan is coming to an end. Pakistan won’t be needed any more. The aid might stick around for a year or two after. But it will dry up eventually. But you’ll still have your bloated armed forces to pay for.

Posted by kEiThZ | Report as abusive

@kEiThZ,

How r u old friend! I called it months ago! I said the real war on terrorism will be within Pakistan. Lo and behold, the mastermind OBL was there all along!

I bet, others like Zawahiri and top AQ guys are protected in other urban centers, as well, for deep storage.

Whether duplicity, or incompetancy is involved here, as Leon Panetta says, none are a good place to be.

Although many Pak Army soldiers have lost their lives, its all suggesting now that there are severe fractures in these institutions, especially the ambivalent dont’ ask and don’t tell attitude, which all comes from the top. Billions of Dollars of AID, and this guy was sitting in luxury all along.

Top U.S. brass have alluded to Pakistan’s mentally unhealthy obsession with maintaining enmity with India. The excuses, double games and lying are about to come to an end. A top general was quoted as saying, that Pakistani’s have their heads buried in the sand, choosing to maintain a 50 year old war that doesn’t exist anymore.

I think the repercussions are going to be quite severe. The blackmail is being called out directly now. I don’t think the Pindi boyz want to end this dog and pony show, they don’t want to catch anybody big and they want to maintain a facade by continually making token Taliban or AQ catches. Don’t put it past these guys if they are even creating half of these guys, only to catch them later and claim that they are fighting the war on militancy. Its not in their interest to end this militancy, it is lucrative, very lucrative, judging by the luxurious homes in the Abottabad district, the establishment has found a lucrative niche on the heads of U.S. taxpayers and therefore, they truly have no interest in ever ending the billions of AID that keeps flowing, that is their bread and butter. Do you agree with me now? It really is that simple. If the Pak Army cleans up house, there is theoretically no more aid required from the U.S. There is no incentive for the Paks to end this game. As I said, there will always be token arrests and eliminations to maintain the facade and protract the milking of aid from U.S. taxpayers.

Posted by G--W | Report as abusive

@Keithz

I don’t think the U.S. will back down, if they are blackmailed by the Paks.

All I gotta say, is that Obama has got bxlls of titanium!

The highest level fish, caught using stealth copters, and the best trained specialists on earth.

The shame and embarrassment is mythic and uncontainable. I also predicted that would be the case, that they would be embarassed and the Obama the lawyer, would systematically dissect and corner the Paks, that he did.

@Umair,

Sorry Umair, you failed on all counts, especially on principles. The pants are around their ankles, w-addling around with wet p-alms and still claiming that there was no wrong doing…PLEASE stop it already…people are not fools.

Indians are laughing all the way to the bank. I would not be surprised, if they try something with India, just to salvage their damaged pride.

This is far worse than 1971, many times worse, more shameful and embarassing. The lies have come out.

Posted by G--W | Report as abusive

Umair,

A direct question to you. I find it incredible that in this whole episode you find no fault with your establishment. Do you not have any questions yourself about why and how Bin Laden was found in Abbottabad? Do you not care?

You seem more offended by the US action than the failures of your establishment in tolerating the world’s most wanted terrorist on Pakistani soil. Surely, the presence of Bin Laden was a much bigger threat to Pakistan than the raid that took him out. If you disagree, I’d like to know your reasoning. I’m genuinely interested in hearing your opinion.

I’d like to know more about Pakistani public opinion on this. Do your fellow citizens share your opinion? Are they more offended by the raid than the presence of Bin Laden? And why aren’t there more demands for the resignations of the ISI Chief, the CoAS and the Chief of the Air Staff? Had this happened in any other democracies, the men would have resigned themselves within hours. I am trying to understand why this is not happening in Pakistan? Is the sense of honour and professional pride different in Pakistan?

Posted by kEiThZ | Report as abusive

@Keithz, How childish, tossing the CIA stn chief under the bus.

If Mr. K ayani and P asha knew nothing, or had no clue whatsoever, its clear their underlings are rogue and are operating under their own ambitions. Hypothetically, if this is the case, their underlings have made them into cheap props with clown uniforms. Sorry for the metaphor, but its true.

Or the alternative, if these two had a don’t tell policy, then that can only mean one thing, that being, there is an intent to protract this facade to milk the cash cow for as long as possible. If this is hypothetically true, then this working relationship had come to an end some time ago, Obama, just didn’t know it.

Posted by G--W | Report as abusive

@keithz,

I have read that most people r too scared to talk public-ally. They use generic sugar coated words like
“the agencies” when talking.

Nobody is going to resign, when this falsly protracted war on militancy is the only source of income for the Pk Army.

The purging and surfacing of truth we have seen in Tunisia, Egypt, Bahrain, and now in Syria. One wonders if that will have chance to see the light in Pk.

Rest assured, so-called “rogue” elements are probably trying hard to create the next new boogeyman to be chased. There are a lot of jobs and paychecks on the line here. Nobody has any intention of telling the truth, or resigning. The scapegoats will be found soon enough.

When you tell one lie, you need to tell 10 more to make the first lie work…and so on.

Posted by G--W | Report as abusive

@Keithz, Obama said:

“We’ve got a chance to, I think, really deliver a fatal blow to this organization, if we follow through aggressively in the months to come,” he said.

Let me loosely translate lawyer talk, in other words, the Navy Seals likely found a treasure trove of more embarrassing information.

Obama went for high lying fruit and I think has in fact been rewarding with a bounty of low-lying fruit.

Posted by G--W | Report as abusive

Myra,

There’s an excellent piece here by Prof. Mead:

http://blogs.the-american-interest.com/w rm/2011/05/08/high-noon-in-pakistan/

He perceives this raid as the ‘moment of truth’, so to speak. I’d love to hear your thoughts. Do you perceive that we are entering a period of strong divergence in US-Pak relations? Is Prof. Mead right about China’s reservations vis-a-vis the triangular calculs between Pakistan, the US and India? There’s a lot of questions that come up. And that makes for some very interesting discussions.

We live in interesting times.

Posted by kEiThZ | Report as abusive

We have tried to explain to the Pakistanis that India is not their enemy. But they want to keep India as their bogeyman at all costs. And it has led to their current status. This is the time the US, China and other powers have to take Pakistan’s military and political leaders for a summit and tell them that India is not the enemy. There is no motive for India to get into conflicts at this time. Only then will the Pakistani war lords will be able to let their country focus on peace and growth. And the US should promise itself and the world that it will never manipulate other countries to their detriment. To a large extent, the US has pampered and spoiled Pakistan’s military. They had turned a blind eye to the dangerous development in South Asia and kept supporting the military in Pakistan. And it has turned into a blow back for the US itself. Pakistan can be corrected very easily if its India obsession is relieved. It is time to move on.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

KP, if the Pakistanis had a fraction of your wisdom, their country would not be in the mess it is in today. Don’t waste your breath showing them the truth. They don’t seem to be interested. There is no sign *even now* that they are willing to take the necessary steps to fix the problem. There is only delusion and more conspiracy theories. Truly, those whom the gods would destroy, they first make mad.

I think their only hope now is a coup from within the army itself that overthrows the short-sighted generals currently at the top and brings to the fore a more pragmatic lot that can stop the jihadist agenda and embark on genuine peace. It will cause the military establishment to shrink, but will save the country. Are there any officers around who are patriotic enough to do that?

Regards,
Ganesh Prasad

Posted by prasadgc | Report as abusive

Imperial Pakistan’s Rules of the Game are as follows:

1) India remains an enemy by simply existing.

2) India making ecnomic progress, gaining international stature by hardwork is proof of Hindu Bania evil.

3)At a minimum India should bend down and punch below its weight, and Imperial Pakistan should punch above its size.

4)Afghanistan should be a colony under the foot of Imperial Pakistan.

5) Concept of “Soverignty” applies only to Imperial Pakistan.

6)Imperial Pakistan can host an assortment of global terrorists, and local terrorists who should be allowed freely to violate the soverignty of other nations.

7)In return rest of the world should pay jiziya tax to Imperial Pakistan.

8)Imperial Pakistan will collect ransom money, so that PA/ISI can live off other people’s money.

9)Anything constructive, productive for any one inside Imperial Pakistan or for the outside world? Forget it.

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

I used to wonder why Americans persisted in saying, “There is no alternative but to continue working with Pakistan”, after each episode where the divergence of interests was made obvious. Prof Mead’s article now makes it very clear. Diplomacy is the art of saying “Nice doggie” until you can find a stick. If a Stuxnet-like virus can be used to take out Pakistan’s nukes, the game will be over and the “Nice doggie” routine will come to an abrupt end.

Regards,
Ganesh Prasad

Posted by prasadgc | Report as abusive

I think the US will pressure Pakistan into making some changes at the top. Kayani, Zardari, Shuja Pasha etc will be forced to resign and be replaced by yet unkown people that are favorable to the US. This way they can help Pakistanis wipe the egg from their faces to some extent. They will do this by black mailing them with “facts” discovered in the Bin Laden’s den. Thye might get the Pak military to deliver Mullah Omar, Zawahiri and Haqqani. In return Pakistan under a new leadership will get to keep their “dignity” in tact, whatever that means. Or else, they can trigger the final slide of Pakistan so that they can never get to control their own country, let alone others. Obama wants more done before the 2012 campaign starts. He has scored a goal already by taking out OBL. Pakistanis should get worried.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

Personally I feel that we are laying too much store by the likes of Umair and the views that appear under this name so often here. This voice is most certainly not the voice of the average Pakistani. There is, from what I see elsewhere a lot of soul searching going on in pakistan and there have been open calls for resignations and taking on responsibility by the unseen Pak Army hand and the puppets they throw up for the public to tear apart.

http://www.dawn.com/2011/05/08/smokers-c orner-not-my-faith-really.html

http://www.dawn.com/2011/05/08/time-for- heads-to-roll.html

http://majorlyprofound.wordpress.com/

I completely agree with G-W, this is another Dec ’71 moment for the Pak Army if not worse. It is also in our combined interests that Pakistan comes out of it without violent upheaval.

Posted by DaraIndia | Report as abusive

[...] In Pakistan, bewilderment  [...]

Dara

What makes you think and how you can base your opinion on a couple of articles in the newspaper. Sure, in Pakistan the media is free and press writes against the Army. That is democracy, but the respect of the Armed Forces is still in place. Public sensitivities are involved, surely questions are being asked from the military high command and political leadership as well. I can tell you there is a lot of public pressure on the Armed Forces to take on the intruding drones as well as any future incursions.

Keith:
” Do you not have any questions yourself about why and how Bin Laden was found in Abbottabad? Do you not care?”

-Yes I do, definitely the presence of a most wanted man in the middle of a Pakistani city is truly shocking. So too the discovery that CIA watched him over from a nearby safe house. Terrorists watching over terrorists, both CIA’s clandestine network as well terrorists need to be eliminated from Pakistani soil, both have a mission to destablize Pakistan. On the first one, Pakistan Army has already ordered to reduce it to “bare minimum level”. Certainly, the media has criticized the establishment and government, the uproar has still not settled, PMs statement in the parliament stopped short of satisfying either the opposition or general public, tough questionsa re being asked and inquiries are being launched, intelligence failure has been accepted.

“You seem more offended by the US action than the failures of your establishment in tolerating the world’s most wanted terrorist on Pakistani soil. Surely, the presence of Bin Laden was a much bigger threat to Pakistan than the raid that took him out. If you disagree, I’d like to know your reasoning. I’m genuinely interested in hearing your opinion.”

-When Pakistan soverignty is breached it is something that offends, given the public sensitivity in Pakistan, neither the government nor the military can now openly support US policies in the region or assist in US regional objectives after the raid. Atleast, there could have been an effort to take Pakistan onboard and share intelligence on the matter. The raid might have been a hollywood style bravado shown by the Navy SEALS but in the long term implications it was a big blunder. Pakistan military has a long tradition of defending the nation and proudly boasts its record, this raid severely damaged the credibility. I can assure next time even there could be an attempt to deliberately draw the US special forces in such an op and there will be an attempt to intercept them to establish credibility. If anything, the raid only reinforces the notion that US and Pakistan are not allies. It will add to mistrust, jeopardize counter-terror cooperation, and further fuel apprehensions on both sides. It helps in nothing, US might have won the battle in Abbottabad, but may loose the war in Afghanistan.

“I’d like to know more about Pakistani public opinion on this. Do your fellow citizens share your opinion? Are they more offended by the raid than the presence of Bin Laden? And why aren’t there more demands for the resignations of the ISI Chief, the CoAS and the Chief of the Air Staff? Had this happened in any other democracies, the men would have resigned themselves within hours. I am trying to understand why this is not happening in Pakistan? Is the sense of honour and professional pride different in Pakistan?”

-When the 9-11 happened in New York, did CIA chief resign? did US president resign? did heads rolled in the US military? Intelligence failures do take place, but certainly the way in which the raid was carried out, lack of confidence shown about ISI and it was not entrusted with intelligence sharing, joint raid not sought speaks a lot that US doesnt give 2 cents about its cooperation with Pakistan. And Pakistani public do not care about such an ally. I can tell you there is a lot of resentment in Pakistan vis-a-vis its relations ith US. General impression is that Pakistan is always used by US to attain its regional interest and abandoned later. Public pressure is on the government and Army to stop such a relationship with US.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive

And just to add, as per emerging new details, US president authorized the special forces team in the raid to be large enough to fight their way out of Pakistan in case there is a confrontation with Pakistani forces.
Do you really think after this the standard operating procedures will be similar in PAKMIL, I am sure there have been new directives issued to forward bases and units deployed on the border.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive

US support for Pakistan, A Long Messy History

The Double Game

http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2011/ 05/16/110516fa_fact_wright?mbid=social_r etweet

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive

Wait a minute luxury? I have seen pictures of Osama’s home, and it is big and largeness in most places means expensive, but luxurious it was not, unless you mean luxury by very poor third world country luxury.

His television was old and out dated, and his house was decorated trailer trash style. The inside decor was also trailer trash. This was probably by choice rather by need. If the mansion cost a million dollars then the cost went into bribes, lot payment, the basic material like concrete, the cost of the electrical grid which according to reports was not hooked up to the local power sources directly, but not labor because we all know what they pay laborers in third world countries.

Why is this important because when our politicians stand in front of pictures of the inside and outside and call this place luxurious, many people, including me, ask the question of themselves, “Are they blind? Or who do they think they are trying to fool? Or aren’t they overstating things by calling this place luxurious?” Osama’s home was by no means, luxurious, unless you are comparing it to a cave in the mountains where people are sleeping on the ground and cooking by open campfires.

If we see things as they are and don’t fool ourselves by calling things what they are not, we may find more intelligence clues which will help us end Osama’s terrorist organizations for good. This will not not end terrorism for good because there will always be some one that will use terrorism to get what they want, but if people’s needs are meant by democracy, there may be fewer terrorists in the world and fewer people who will help them.

Of course in the United States today a millions dollars doesn’t not buy the house it used to, but it will be better constructed and decorated than Osama’s dump.

Posted by Myche | Report as abusive

The US has begun to push Pakistan towards changing its attitude towards India. They have come to the realization that belligerent stance towards India is unnecessary.

http://www.dawn.com/2011/05/10/us-expect s-pakistan-to-redefine-security-preferen ces.html

ISI might get Isfandyar Khan Pataudi as its next chief. This guy is the first cousin of Mansur Ali Khan Pataudi that Indians are familiar with. Mansur’s dad Ifthikar Ali Khan and Isfandyar’s dad were brothers. Isfandyar might change the outlook of the ISI and dilute the anti-Indian venom built up in the ISI. A similar change at the military’s top position can do wonders for the region. I think the US is slowly forcing Pakistan to get out of its addiction.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

The US is already zeroing in on Bin Laden’s successors:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/42965337/ns/ world_news-death_of_bin_laden/

Justice will be served.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

Umair, read what I have said carefully. I am not talking of respect for the army. I am saying that people in Pakistan do have the good sense to see through its failings and incompetence also. Your voice is the one that seems to be the lonely one which sees nothing but everything good in everything that the army has and will do.Here too, instead of looking at events of the raid you are talking of pressure regarding drones, just a red herring.

There are many many others who take a more rational view and are open to introspect instead of just plain flag waving which you seem to revel in. It fools no one.Thats why I am sure. I simply refuse to believe that your view of view represents the view of most average Pakistanis because I read differently. Its just not articles but the responses to those articles which I find reflect the true pulse. I wish some more of them would come here and give their opinions too it would make for a more rational and balanced discussion. YOur views are simply unilateral – the army is perfect – period! Nothing to discuss.

Posted by DaraIndia | Report as abusive

About Paks c;aim about “soverignty”

1) Does Pakistan violate the soverignty of other countries by hosting an assortment of global and local terrorists? who bomb and maim people of other countries.

2) If Pakistan doesn’t respect the soverignty of other countries why should other countries respect Pakistan’s “soverignty”. (Thanks US of A!)

3)Or do paks feel only Imperial Pakistan is entitled to “soverignty”?

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

http://www.frumforum.com/pakistans-marke ts-unworried-about-rift-with-us

Pakistan’s Markets Not Worried About Rift With U.S.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive

Frum forum is a good site. Full of useful information.

http://www.frumforum.com/pakistan-pariah -state-to-investors

$50 million in equity investment in the first four months of 2011 for all of Pakistan?

In the depression year of 2009, Bangladesh – long thought of as the basketcase of Asia – attracted $700 million, down from over $1 billion before the global economic crisis began.

We are familiar with the problem of rogue states. Pakistan seems in danger of turning itself into a pariah state.

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

The situation Room pic, watching live feed of the raid

http://yfrog.com/gzlctaoj

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive

Dara

@ Army is perfect. Well I never stated Army is perfect, what I am stating is that Army and ISI have over the years extended far too much cooperation to US and there is a need to curtail that now. :)

and BTW, while this is Pakistan’s internal matter, but if you really want to know the public voices, let me assure you the corrupt Zardari government has absolutely no credibility in front of the public. Common Pakistanis know if someone will take a stand on important national matters, it will be the Army. Somehow this lack of unified command led the US to exploit the situation in Pakistan and violate Pakistan’s soverignty. But now even the PM, civil govt. have come out in full support of Army and ISI.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive

Umair this is not what we are discussing here. What I am saying is that you are not the sole voice of the average Pakistani. There are enough people in Pakistan who are now crying out that someone has goofed up and goofed up badly and someone needs to take responsibility. No one is owning up, its all being buried under this smoke screen of sovereignty. No one is standing up. Everyone wants authority but no one has a sense of responsibility it seems.

It isn’t just Pakistans internal matter anymore; and are they forever going to maintain their plausible deniability? It does effect the stability of the entire region.

Here’s one more voice for you:

Mother of all embarrassments by Ayaz Amir

http://www.thenews.com.pk/TodaysPrintDet ail.aspx?ID=45440&Cat=9&dt=5/6/2011

Why dont you read what many of your own countrymen are saying and rebut them with logical debate instead of going off at tangents talking of how much sacrifice and how much co-operation you have extended. Just plain denials carry no more weight any longer. let them be backed by logical and pertinent explanation.

Posted by DaraIndia | Report as abusive

My heartiest congrats to Pakis for losing a great leader, mentor and soldier of Islam. Further thanks for letting rest of the world know that your country is the place to look for all kinds of Islam related terrorists and related activities. And thanks for letting everyone know how incompetent your forces are. But then what else can one expect from a nation whose majority people are so mad about religion that even for educated lot like Matrixx and Umair, Islam comes before Pakistan despite that Islam has only given them humiliation till date. All this info will be very helpful in future fights against terrorism and further exploitation of your country and its people, to core in name of Islam. I agree with Ganesh that people of Pakistan want to see only what lenses of Islam make them enable to see and not the whole truth.

Posted by 007XXX | Report as abusive

Umair,

Lots of words. Yet, not an answer in sight. You dodged my question and I’m calling you out on it. Let’s see if you have the temerity to actually give me a clear answer.

In your opinion, is the presence of Bin Laden, hours from Islamabad, a greater threat than the US raid that killed him?

Yes or no. There’s no need for an essay format answer. Answer the question directly.

Second question: How common is your opinion among your fellow Pakistanis? Answer honestly.

Lastly, this crap about a “Hollywood style raid”. Geez. There was nothing Hollywood about it. That’s how SOF works. They go in, get their target and get out. The entire thing was over in less than half the time of most Hollywood movies and a significantly smaller body count than most Pakistan Army operations. Would you rather they have dropped a Daisy Cutter from a B-52 and take out the whole neighbourhood?

Posted by kEiThZ | Report as abusive

keithz: “Would you rather they have dropped a Daisy Cutter from a B-52 and take out the whole neighbourhood?”

Be careful who you are talking to! You are challenging a nuclear armed nation with 200 million sitting ducks. What if they dropped a nuke on themselves to save their pride and then blame the Americans for smuggling the nuke in the form of a drone? You guys need to think of long term effects. Do you think there will be enough stock of 72 vegans, sorry virgins in the heaven if a nuke or a daisy cutter falls on them? Not many boys are left. Most have been molested already in the Madrasas so much that they want to be suicide bombers to get out. Understand the sensitiveness and sensibility of the people and the military of Pakistan. :-)

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

-When the 9-11 happened in New York, did CIA chief resign? did US president resign? did heads rolled in the US military? Intelligence failures do take place, but certainly the way in which the raid was carried out, lack of confidence shown about ISI and it was not entrusted with intelligence sharing, joint raid not sought speaks a lot that US doesnt give 2 cents about its cooperation with Pakistan. And Pakistani public do not care about such an ally. I can tell you there is a lot of resentment in Pakistan vis-a-vis its relations ith US. General impression is that Pakistan is always used by US to attain its regional interest and abandoned later. Public pressure is on the government and Army to stop such a relationship with US.

Posted by Umairpk
=====

Yeah. It’s not like they had a Congressional commission which led to a complete re-work of the US intelligence community or anything like that.

And I wasn’t aware that the 9/11 hijackers had taken up residence down the street from Westpoint or the US Naval Academy. And for all their failures, the Americans have caught various plotters since then.

But what truly makes your answer absurd, are all the denials by Pakistani officials for years, that Bin Laden wasn’t in Pakistan.

The ISI possibly coddling Bin Laden, would be like the CIA harbouring terrorists who kill Americans. If that happened, I sincerely doubt the American people would be satisfied with mere resignations from the top brass. I can’t believe that you don’t think the leaders of the ISI and the Army deserve their walking papers after likely harbouring an individual who killed many Pakistanis…including many brave Pakistani soldiers.

Posted by kEiThZ | Report as abusive

Keithz has point. I think this mission has set the bar now, on rooting out terrorists, no matter what country they are in. The entire intelligence establishment has taken a huge reaping in terms of their capabilities and credibility, quite the opposite for the Pakistani counterparts.

People naturally get rattled and upset when there is collateral damage and innocents in the crossfire. This by far is the best example of how a much cheaper, surgical take out is effective. In this one, the U.S. used AssymetricaL warfare against an enemy, who ever they are and won big.

I think in the future many conflicts will be settled by extremely competant crack commando teams that infiltrate and complete their mission in secrecy with lethality. I think there will be victories known and unknown.

I bet there are much more actionable targets like Geronimo sitting, hiding in that or other cities. This is definitely fodder for hollywood. I for one would like to see the Gurkha Rifle sitting on those modified Stealth Blackhawks.

We have to remember here, this all started with 911, the U.S. WAS the victim here. The mastermind was sitting in Pakistan. Naturally, the world is watching and wondering if the rest of his lower level commanders are there as well. Rest assured the capture of Geronimo is not the first, nor the last intentioned mission.

Posted by G--W | Report as abusive

G-W: “I think in the future many conflicts will be settled by extremely competant crack commando teams that infiltrate and complete their mission in secrecy with lethality. I think there will be victories known and unknown.”

Pakistan has already proved this capability by launching the Mumbai attacks. They could do it so well that none of their “soldiers” were real soldiers. They came in plain clothes and took on India’s entire system. Bravo Pakistan! You are ahead of even the Americans.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

I find the sovereignty argument used by the Pakistani public and state officials to be incredulous.

On the one hand, they get all worked up about US drone strikes and this SOF raid. On the other, there’s scarcely a peep about what cause those US forces to violate Pakistan’s sovereignty in the first place: the Haqqanis, Al Qaeda, Taliban, etc. Where’s the anger and protest in Pakistan, when those groups violate Pakistan’s sovereignty? Or is a violation of Pakistan’s sovereignty only a problem when it’s not in Pakistan’s perceived interest? Why the double standard?

I’d suggest that once a state allows so-called non-state actors to violate their sovereignty, you’ve made it fair game for anybody else (including other states) to follow suit. Post-9/11 this seems to be par for the course.

Posted by kEiThZ | Report as abusive

Or is a violation of Pakistan’s sovereignty only a problem when it’s not in Pakistan’s perceived interest? Why the double standard?

Posted by kEiThZ
==

Imperial Pakistan has one set of rules for itself and one for others.

It comes from a supremacist mindset, and a sense of entitlement. It is a myth that only PA/ISI subscribe to such notions, most of pak civilian population are like that. That’s why “moderate” paks are opposed to Taliban terrorists ruling Lahore but are strongly in favor of Taliban terrorists ruling Kabul.

Pak civilian population with PA/ISI feels they are destined for some sort of Islamic Glory. It is like Third Reich all over again.

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

@G-W:
“I think in the future many conflicts will be settled by extremely competant crack commando teams that infiltrate and complete their mission in secrecy with lethality. I think there will be victories known and unknown.”

I think overall its a dangerous trend for humanity in general. Such operations might be used and will be used to gain personal or national interests which may not be morally correct. This whole thing takes us back to Babylonian days when Alexander accused Darius of financing his father’s death and waged a war on Persia to eventually become king of whole middle east. So in case of Pakistan and OBL it is fine but where do you draw the line? Sudan, Somalia, Lebanon, Syria, Libya, where do you draw the line? By the way such operation are nothing new. Ask Israelis about operation Wrath of God and operation Spring of Youth. But what is worrying is that now Israel may feel a kind of free hand to carry more Wrath of God upon middle east. Will Pakistan the saviour and warlord of Islam be able to defend middle east when its own house is in such mess despite having all the nukes.

“I for one would like to see the Gurkha Rifle sitting on those modified Stealth Blackhawks.”

Gurkha rifles/Sikh regiment/Rajputana rifles/NSG on Stealth Blackhawks is an extremely lethal combination, a super deadly weapon that would demand extreme caution before even thinking of using it.

Posted by 007XXX | Report as abusive

Those who (repeatedly) violate the sovereignty of others by unleashing their “non-state actors” on them, have absolutely no right to demand their own. If you don’t respect the rights of others, you can’t claim any, either.

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive

Keith:
“Lots of words. Yet, not an answer in sight. You dodged my question and I’m calling you out on it. Let’s see if you have the temerity to actually give me a clear answer.

In your opinion, is the presence of Bin Laden, hours from Islamabad, a greater threat than the US raid that killed him?

Yes or no. There’s no need for an essay format answer. Answer the question directly.

Second question: How common is your opinion among your fellow Pakistanis? Answer honestly.”

-Keith, in first place I am under no obligation to answer any of your questions, but still I will answer them and this is based on the understanding that you will also share the links, your personal opinions about how the west percieve pakistan from policy making point of view. below is my answer:

“In your opinion, is the presence of Bin Laden, hours from Islamabad, a greater threat than the US raid that killed him?”

-Honestly, OBL presence was a greater threat, no one shed tears for him, also when Baitullah mehsud was killed in a drone strike that too was good riddance. However, unilateral action by US caused a public backlash, anger in the Pakistan Army and the level of future counter-terror cooperation appears to go down. These unilateral raid/drone strikes destablize Pakistan.

“Second question: How common is your opinion among your fellow Pakistanis? Answer honestly”

-I think the general opinion in Pakistani public too is very much in favour of getting rid of Bin Laden. PA came under rare public criticism since it could not detect the US intrusion and did not confront the intruding forces. That is a different thing, but generally tell you, OBL and his ideology has no place in Pakistan.

“Yeah. It’s not like they had a Congressional commission which led to a complete re-work of the US intelligence community or anything like that.”

-Yeah, United States is now a Police state, its citizens have no more civil liberties, everytime the government is watching them. This is what an American tourist told me, the life in US after 9-11 is much more difficult than before. Now you have a dozen intelligence agencies, a huge Army of Defense contractors and private mercaneries. Good job, keep it up!

“The ISI possibly coddling Bin Laden, would be like the CIA harbouring terrorists who kill Americans. If that happened, I sincerely doubt the American people would be satisfied with mere resignations from the top brass. I can’t believe that you don’t think the leaders of the ISI and the Army deserve their walking papers after likely harbouring an individual who killed many Pakistanis…including many brave Pakistani soldiers.”

-You know the case of Jaycee Dugard she was kidnapped as teenage girl, kept for 20 years in a backyard in California and when discovered her kidnapper had children with her. Things happen, the world is too small a place yet to big to live in. How OBL managed to be in Pakistan, certainly there is no justification. People of Pakistan reject terrorism and terrorists, be they Al-Qaeda or CIA. two sides of the same coin. And tell me what happened after the Iran Contra-affair, what happened whenever CIA overthrew a foreign government? Did Americans ever felt any shame? When US Army did the Abu Ghraib prison abuses in Iraq? did the Americans came out in streets? Were the perpetrators fired from their jobs? And what about the chopper film where people are fired upon from a gunship helicopter who turn out not to be insurgents? I am not giving any excuses and justification here ok, sometime you accused Pakistan of becoming like Nazi Germany? I am asking you if it is true that CIA has ‘black sites’ across Europe, they conduct torture? or not? After all this, I support Pakistan should strictly adhere to UN security council resolution 1373, eliminate all non-state actors and terrorists if found in their territory. But don’t think we are evil and you are angels, ok.

“I find the sovereignty argument used by the Pakistani public and state officials to be incredulous.”

-Sure, it is ridiculous for a third world country to stand up to a super power and demand that its soverignty to be respected. But when that third world country turns out to be a Muslim nation of 200 million people and a nuclear power, i think that means its time to seriously respects its soverignty or risk backlash. Sir, you argue that US forces violate Pakistan’s soverignty becoz of HQN, LET, AQ, TALIBAN present here, don’t forget it was CIA whinvited AQ back in 80s to take on Soviets on Af-Pak soil. Yesterday US supplied all of them including ISI, today what we see are the fallout of those years.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive

Keith,
I have a few brief questions and would appreciate if you answer:

1. What is your position on Kashmir, do you think that dispute with India causes all the strategic depth/nurture terrorists argument against Pakistan’s security establishment? Do you think resolution of disputes with India will make Pakistan a better country?

2. What is your position on India, do you agree they are Pakistan’s enemy no. 1 posing an existential threat?

3. Given CIA’s clandestine network, its adversareial relations with ISi, is it true there is an outside hand in destabilizing Pakistan? To put it bluntly, is CIA working against Pakistan?

4. Despite all of Pakistan efforts, if the war is lost in Afghanistan, will Pakistan be punished? If yes in what way (diplomatic isolation, sanctions etc.) ?

5. Lets suppose Pakistan gives up its strategic depth/harboring terror/double game policy etc. Pakistan accepts all demands placed on it. In return will the US and west force India to settle Kashmir dispute?

Lets see if you can grasp my questions, interpret correctly and answer them, ofcourse you are under no obligation though. And remember, my questions are because of a fundamental problem faced by Pakistan. I will elaborate further when you give me the answers.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive

Pakistan’s Government Remains Defiant in Face of bin Laden Criticism

http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0  ,8599,2070632,00.html

Ambassador fends off doubts about Pakistan’s role

http://networkedblogs.com/hHEnN

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive

The Vexing U.S.-Pakistani Relationship Heads South, Post-bin Laden

http://battleland.blogs.time.com/2011/05  /10/the-vexing-u-s-pakistani-relationsh ip-heads-south-post-bin-laden/

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive

@Umair

First step to improving is to accept the mistakes. But when you guys cannot accept your mistakes then how will you improve? All hope for Pakistan is lost.

Posted by 007XXX | Report as abusive

LOL. I was wondering when the Kashmir angle would be interwoven into this discussion and by whom.

I will repeat, Pakistan and India have a Kashmir problem since 1947. The Afghan situation and 9/11 were decades later. Yet they never tire of trying to get it in somehow or other in any context. When there was no Afghan problem, when the terrorist problem was not so compounded, Pakistan still started hostilities over Kashmir. Why didn’t things stay calm and get sorted out? Is Pakistan in such a mess because of Kashmir alone? If so, how did India manage to move on and develop? It has taken decades of stupidity and no one thought of changing course? Its the same old story, we are never at fault. Its always someone else, poor us!

BTW just a thought. Bashir, the Pakistani foreign secretary mentioned the other night that asking Pakistan to deliver justice over 26/11 is outdated….in other words history, so lets forget it and move on. Well then Kashmir is pre-historic by the same standards. Yet if its Pakistan, then they will not only bring it up whenever they want but will also change their stand whenever they want!

Posted by DaraIndia | Report as abusive

Umair,

I know your questions were addressed to Keith, but maybe you can give an answer to this one:

1. If India refuses to settle the Kashmir dispute, will Pakistan refuse to quit its current trajectory?

(Who loses from this, BTW?)

Regards,
Ganesh Prasad

Posted by prasadgc | Report as abusive

I think the common man of every country in the world suffers in this power struggle.They seem to lose their limbs hands & legs in the most selfish pursuits of personal glory tossed between a terrorist, a corrupt army & a super power country. Mankind seems to rejoice this guys killing in Newyork just like 10 years back people danced elsewhere when the twin tower was hit.The photo ops of Obama’s victory is just as much disgusting as much as Osama watching over himself in the TV.I hope the God who created these men & women is really worthy of worship.

Posted by Abardaijan | Report as abusive

1. If India refuses to settle the Kashmir dispute, will Pakistan refuse to quit its current trajectory?

I will answer.

The problem is with your question. Seriously.
you think Pakistan is going down.
He thinks Pakistan is going up.

Down is up and up is down in irrational, delusional “thinking”.

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

(unfortunately) rational arguments will not solve irrational aggression,

US should cut aid drastically. Pak economy is in such bad shape, it is being propped up in a fake manner.

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

“Nobody cares about Bin Laden or America’s war. Nobody gives a damn. Pakistanis are more worried about inflation.”

—Posted by d3v

Are you serious ? When did you see Pakistanis coming out on streets against hike in Petrol prices.

But they do came out on “Shahadat” of their Beloved Sheikh OBL.

Posted by punjabiyaar | Report as abusive

In general Paks give quite a bit of “damn” while in public saying they don’t give a “damn”.

Like collecting money from Americans and then training suicide bombers to go and kill American soldiers.

Or they give a “damn” like this also…

Pakistan paid £135,000 to British MP for promoting its Kashmir case

http://www.ndtv.com/article/world/pakist an-paid-135-000-to-british-mp-for-promot ing-its-kashmir-case-105022

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

@umair,

you keep reminding us that Pakistan is a country of 200m Muslims and a nuclear state. So what does that mean? Does that mean you are exempt from acting and behaving responsibly and incoherently, does it give you a blank cheque to misbehave, blackmail, lie, carryout duplicitous policies? Does it also exempt you from civilized, stately behavior, should provide immunity to you from being questioned and cross-examined by the outside world?

Pakistan has abused its nuclear status to such a horrible degree that it has undermined its ally USA in Afganistan and carried out assymetrical warfare against India and h as in fact used its nuclear status as a heel to carry out all manners of dirty nefarious activities against India and has also falsly protracted this war against militancy, to milk the cash cow as long as possible.

So please excuse the rest of the world, if they seem, just a little dismayed and a little annoyed. Perhaps you should step outside of it all and see our POV. There is not quarrel with the citizens of Pakistan. The USA taxpayers have a quarrel with your double dealing pindi boys, their continual evasion and now the top AQ boss being right under your noses for so long…please tell us how to interpret this, tell us what to think, give us a reasonable explanation for the billions of USD? The optics are far beyond horrible. You have to admit that. Please don’t dredge up the soviet era past, it just starts to sound like more hollow excuses.

I told you a year ago, Obama is a lawyer and will eventually corner you guys into honesty. The time for honest is here. It time your establishments got cleaned up and send a whole bunch of guys packing and dishonorable discharges. There must be accountability anything else will not be acceptable.

Posted by G--W | Report as abusive

“United States is now a Police state, its citizens have no more civil liberties, everytime the government is watching them. This is what an American tourist told me, the life in US after 9-11 is much more difficult than before. Now you have a dozen intelligence agencies, a huge Army of Defense contractors and private mercaneries.” Posted by Umairpk

This is grossly exaggerated & false. I can’t imagine that even you, believe in some of your hyperbolic comments. I agree that security & vigilance has been drastically heightened since 9/11 but americans have the same civil rights, they had prior to 9/11 & that includes muslims. If you are suspected to be involved in terrorism related activities, you’ll be watched but if you are clean, you have nothing to worry about. There are no spies & mercenaries hanging around. Maybe your “tourist” got in trouble due to suspicious behavior.

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive

Now Pakistanis have started using the new line: “Some rogue elements inside ISI or military might have housed Bin Laden”

http://www.hindustantimes.com/Rogue-elem ents-in-ISI-army-may-have-helped-Osama-M usharraf/H1-Article1-696360.aspx

Looks like Pak military and ISI have a couple of departments – Non state actor department and Rogue element department. Somehow they do things without the knowledge of the official top brass and put the nation under pressure.

There is no dearth of creativity for lies in Pakistan. If rogue elements could build a nice farm house right next to an army enclave and house Bin Laden there for five odd years, how difficult is it for the same rogue elements to seize the nukes or set the country on fire? Mumbai attacks were carried out by “rogue elements” or “non state actors”? Which one of them is being run by Major Iqbal? How long do you guys think you can fool everyone? On one side Pak military is supposed to be professional, united, modern, mighty, and what not, according to the posters here. So where did rogue elements suddenly arise from? And why would they do anything against their own country’s dignity and self respect?

The next raid inside Pakistan to finish off another key militant will make a complete mockery of the entire system in Pakistan.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

As keith put in her previous post, the desire for revenge against India blinds the elite of pakistani establishment which is the fundemental problem. Although they do not formally speak of against this desire, it is very much evident in their actions. Destined to be small economic player vis-a-vis India, their only option of taking on India is unravelling a low intensity warfare. This will end for frustrating the enemy at some point and makes it to take irrational decisions.

The US has become the pakistan’s enemy the day musharraf was threatened by Americans to be with us or against us. Foreseeing a disaster, Pakistani’s opted to ostensibly work with the Americans but their gameplan was to eventually tireout the Americans while all along taking their money and pretending to work for them. Americans believed initially that pakistan may be,just maybe willing to break off their suicidal policy and were flirting with the Idea that solving kashmir would inevitably solve the Afghan problem.But it was not to be.

No matter who asks , Pakistan wont backtrack from its policy of low intensity warfare against Indian because its the only option to keep India bogged down in Kashmir (atleast it hopes are pinned on it).
When Indians started to keep the conflict restricted to Kashmir, the frustrated Pakistani establishment went out all the way to open a new front outside Kashmir (read Mumbai).

Most Indians were believing that the Case of Kashmir is entirely the fault of Pakistan, but after reading from so many journals and from neutral sources, we see in the last decade that Indians no longer claim completely innocent of their actions. They now believe that India had made grave mistakes in rigging the consecutive elections in 83 and 89 which resulted in the orgin of kashmir insurgency which pakistan happily stoked fires. Our more than moderate,tolerant culture and respect for different opinions embedded by our educational system(as well by socio-political institutions) resulted in accepting this truth.

The case for Pakistanis is different where the state orchestrated a irrational and delusional theory of greatness of Islamic rule and ceaseless hatred for India reflected in their text books (children of Zia) eventually ended up making pakistanis intolerant,one-sided, lack of uniqueness in their approach (a kind of rotary behavior or herd mentaility), when sorrounded we see them making delusions of grandeur about Islam, chest-thumping, victimization, sudden ray of hope and finally a prophecy for the world. With such a population which establishment of the world wont be envious of pakistani establishment!! Even revolutions fizzle out without making any basic changes to the statecraft.

Pervez hoodbhoy elequently puts it his article “Why do they pick on us Pakistanis? ”
http://www.asianwindow.com/tag/pervez-ho odbhoy/

Posted by sensiblepatriot | Report as abusive

Umair,

In your argument with KeithZ, you bring the case of a mentally sick man who hid a girl in the basement in a nice neighborhood for years.

This is a very flimsy argument. In the case of OBL, he was being hunted by the world’s largest super power. More than anything else, the radars are supposed to be watching every crow and dog that moves inside Pakistan. The amount of resources being used for this hunt is probably a million times more than the abducted girl’s case where a police system with limited resources is used to trace her.

You do not have to take any responsibility for any of what happened. You are an ordinary citizen. Your country’s military has committed a criminal act, knowingly. Without the blessings and support of your military nothing can move inside Pakistan or outside of it. If OBL could “fool” your military, then explain to me how Balochi rebels and other anti-state activists are unable to hide inside Pakistan? Your military is hand in glove with Islamic terrorists of all kinds because of its India obsession. It has become like a mentally sick patient. As more “truths” emerge, your military is going to be purged by the US, nukes or not. Changes happen in Pakistan at the command from the US. Your democratic government is surviving because of the US. Kayani has not staged coup because of the US. He will also be replaced and your system cleansed by the US. Watch the events that are about to unfold. Your chest thumping has become a laughing stock. Try not to make a fool out of yourself in defense of these corrupt clowns.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

Musharraf says in the article I quoted above,

“It’s really appalling that he was there and nobody knew. I’m certainly appalled that I didn’t know and that intelligence people from that time onward didn’t know for six years that he was inside”

If at all there is the best crook, the title goes to Musharraf. He was the guy who made double dealing and deception into an art. He lied openly that no Pak soldier was involved in Kargil war and changed the statement many years later. He sponsored Al Qaeda and the Taliban inside Afghanistan. He fooled the Bush administration by pretending to be an ally on war on terrorism. He arranged to airlift all Pak army regulars,Taliban and Al Qaeda militants from Kunduz and hid them in different parts of Pakistan. He headed the illegal nuclear proliferation scheme and used AQ Khan as a scape goat to cover up all the actions. Now he says rogue elements might have hidden OBL. He was the head of that rogue army. The US needs to arrest him and bring him to justice. It is because of him the war on terror has reached a near dead end. He is responsible for setting things on fire and pretending to be fire fighting. Extradite Musharraf from London and put him in jail. He will reveal a lot more truth if given a vacation in Guantanamo bay.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

“You know the case of Jaycee Dugard she was kidnapped as teenage girl, kept for 20 years in a backyard in California and when discovered her kidnapper had children with her. Things happen, the world is too small a place yet to big to live in. How OBL managed to be in Pakistan, certainly there is no justification.” Posted by Umairpk

How’s that analogous? One is a deranged kidnapper & the other is the world’s most wanted terrorist. If you want to compare OBL living in Abottabad for 6 yrs, compare it with OBL living in West Point or Sandhurst for 6 yrs. There are unapprehended criminals in every country, the US is no different.

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive

So most people believe now that Osama is dead, and was killed by “WE”, the most misused and probably misleading word in this decade, and mentioned by the current President of the United States. Two choppers went into a sovereign country ( contraveinng UN charter)with special force and supposedly killed at least one unarmed person and returned to base with one chopper having lost the other chopper (perhaps out of nervousness or fear of dectection by the Pakistan army?), carrying a dead body and loads of videos and a full size library with them.

The body is claimed to have been thrown into the sea, according to muslim customs and the DNA proved that the dead man was OSAMA BIN LADEN, says the USA President.

Mission accomplished, but without any clarity and therefore Pakistan Govt. is being asked to clarify the whole matter and even allow USA interrogaters to approach the assumed wife of the deceased. According to Mr Obama Mr Bin Laden must have had support from within Pakistan to stay undetected(by whom?)for such a long period. Very bright conclusion?

What a diabolic story for the birds, no trial of the criminal and no body to prove the deceased man’ guilt. Europe has awakened to the new set of values being established by the current USA administartion and the vulgar display of celebrations of the mob in today’s christian country of America at the death of a human. Even the German chancellor slipped and had to be reminded by the clergy including the Pope that no christian is to show happiness on the death of a human.

A country of law does not entitle even the President of a country to follow the methods of a lawless terrorist to carry out the justice. UNO is under pressure to investigate the incident and the USA administration is being asked politely to explain its action.

I doubt if even the the incompetent Pakistan leaders are likely to accept any more crap from their unreliable and distrustworthy ally in future dealings.

Rex Minor

Posted by pakistan | Report as abusive

When are they going to ban opium cultivation?

Posted by DaraIndia | Report as abusive

“When are they going to ban opium cultivation?”

LOL

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive

When is India going to take back the sikh community which they so cleverly exported to Europe and North America under the pretext of voluntary asylum. Perhaps Indiia could control the population growth by following the Chinese example or the good old pharaoh who ordered the killing of first born one among the immigrant workers?
No personal attack is intended, simply a practical proposal to reduce Indian out of control growth in the world. The world resources are limited and there must be some alternative to war!

Rex Minor

Posted by pakistan | Report as abusive

In general Jihadi terrorists, and their supporters tend to be racially prejudiced and bigoted individuals.

Mindset is minor, but prejudice is major.

http://tinyurl.com/47shqga

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

Someone needs to remind the psycho jihadi mullah, complaining about “world population growth” that muslims contribute to that growth more than any other group; growth rate amongst muslims is almost twice that of non-muslims. Someone needs to put a lid on that gutter already. The rat seems to be coming up, way too often!

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive

Rat? :-)

More like jihadi cockroach. Pestilence is visiting.

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

Amazing to see Indian population control figuring here in Pakistan article/blog and that too by a supposed German “muslim”. Height of bigotry.

BTW does this bigot know who in India is against strict implementation uniform civil code?? Or what is the proposed UCC in India?? The typical indication of bigotry is that bigots speak too much and display their extreme lack of knowledge.

Posted by 007XXX | Report as abusive

I thought we had agreed not to respond to this person.

Regards,
Ganesh Prasad

Posted by prasadgc | Report as abusive

@Myra
The most difficult task in intelligence professions is the CONNECTION OF DOTS. You do want us to believe that white house story is a genuine one and it was old Osama who got killed and thrown into the sea. For argument sake let us agree with the current President that Osama was unarmed and killed by the highly trained commandos. Now please recall the history of CIA failures in connecting the dots accurately and timely? The Sept. 11 terrorist attack could have very well been prevented!
Now guess how many members of the CIA, ISI and M16 are participating actively as bloggers in Reuers Blog? Not to mention Pakistan next door neighbouring country who along with the intelligence operatives have also sent in several PR propagandists to appear on this blog and to engage Pakistani bloggers?

I have not included the langley operation which is monitoring all the data live!!
It is all a matter of connecting the DOTS! Today’s intelligence networks are relativel y well advanced, but are slow in response on account of the mega data which computers and then humans have to sift through after which they are able to connect the dots. It is almost mission impossible and then slow.

Remember the cold war was won by the west because they were too many and became too good in the dots game versus their adversaries.

Rex Minor

Posted by pakistan | Report as abusive

I Thank Rex for reminding the question of population growth. As Ganesh pointed out, there is little point in reasoning with this Guy, who thinks We bloggers are CIA agents, wish I were.. atleast I might have had a good spooky proud job of acting as spy blogger to defend what is zionist-christina-Hindu conspiracy to defame pakistan rather than just bloody code developer. Can’t stop laughing at that when I read.

And “langley ..” what? A system that processes zetabytes of information that is generated everyday! I had a bad day at office today but you made my day. :-)

But Seriously the Question of population growth is a serious issue which should be dealt with seriously, first by understanding it.
After the failure of Malthusian theory that we cannot feed a growing population and which had to wait for catastrophic consequences (obviously his IQ did not support the idea of innovation and science), the new economic theory states that population growth has three phases in a decently forward looking progressing nation.

In the first phase, the population growth is slow as both death rates (owing to low expectancy and high fatality rate at birth) with high birth rates keep the population tab in control.

In the second phase when serious reforms take root, the population growth surges with better medical facilities which result in better life spans and improved child mortality and survivable rates. This is also the time when governments call it their youth bulge and will invest hugely in social sector aka, Education and infrastructure to support low end jobs owing to high population.

In the final phase population grows older as the youth bulge pushes itself into later part of the old age. The next generation with larger old populations to feed will have to invest excessive amount of GDP to their welfare and a desire for middle class families (and lower middle class) to lead better economic lifestyles will limit the number of children.Governments invest in higher education,innovation and better resource utilization. The populatin stabilizes with high percapita incomes.

Now the catch here is, while all the western societies transformed their populations as stated above. One doesn’t understand why they decry when India does the same thing! western People visiting in the forums fume at our population growth but never remember that it is our demand for good that is fuelling their exports. No, they wont remember that. Australia completely depends on chinese and Indian demand for raw materials.

They don’t remember that we are no longer dependent on their food and that we produce our own food and export in large quantities. No they wont remember it.

They need us to fuel their Industrial demand but ostracise us when we become competetive to them (more so in hitech sectors).

Their own economists say that we are in the same phase that American baby boomer generation was in 50′s and will in all possibilities follow their phenomenon. And the most important issue during this transition phase is whether we are growing with the speed we need to grow to create enough job oppurtunities. Economists say that during this second phase (baby boomer) a country should atleast grow 3 times as fast as population growth for atleast a generation say 30 years. If India’s populaton growth rate is 1.5 percent (I adjusted to higer possible range) we should atleast grow 4.5 percent, well have they noticed we are growing double that 4.5 percent.

In retrospective, pakistan with arount 2 percent of population growth rate, is growing at around 4 percent but should grow atlest 6 to 8 percent to create enough jobs for avoiding the pull of youth by extremists. Continued bombings in pakistan is the best statement to your politicians and establishment that you are not focussing enough on that and ther’s a blowback effect.
Infact lack of progessive attitude will result in perennially growing youth bulge and result in Malthusian nightmares.

Posted by sensiblepatriot | Report as abusive

Re: Population growth

I’ve been on this blog for a couple of years & I’ve seen Umair go from “we’re a proud nation of 150 million muslims with nukes” TO “we’re a proud nation of 200 million muslims with nukes”. Now that’s some growth, keep it up Pakistan ;)

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive

Sensiblepatriot,

Appreciate your simplified explanation which I think I understood! But it has helped in my understanding of the theory. Maybe it is old hat to the others but I have learnt something.

I understand zilch of all these theories, except superficially. My perspective is from what I see around me and my limited experience. With that yardstick, I would say India to-day is in the second stage of this growth theory. Many see this young able bodied and educated youth as a spur to better performance, which is right.

I do have one major worry about the future, specially when it comes to a country like India or any other specially in this part of the world. Before we know it, this youth will be middle aged and retired. Because we have no forward looking social security network in our countries, when we get to the final phase, these same people who were considered assets will be treated as liabilities. In fact a few years ago when Chidambram was the finance minister there was talk going around that pensions should be only till 75 years. I think this is going to be our undoing in a few years time, likewise for China.

We have to plan now and prepare for when we have this huge elderly bulge in our population. What baffles me is that none of our so called intellectuals and analysts even vaguely touches on this. It is almost as if throwing up of hands and saying nothing to be done, just let them rot in their old age.

Posted by DaraIndia | Report as abusive

[...]  In a pell-mell issue that followed bin Laden’s killing, a municipal supervision missed an event to claim a authority over a military, that dominates foreign and confidence policy.  If a United States had unequivocally wanted to accelerate a municipal government, why did it leave it flailing? An oversight? A doubt of aged habits failing hard? A matter of unsentimental convenience? Or an denote that in Washington’s decades-long welfare for traffic directly with a troops in Pakistan, nothing has unequivocally changed? [...]

[...]  In the chaotic aftermath which followed bin Laden’s killing, the civilian government missed an opportunity to assert its authority over the military, which dominates foreign and security policy.  If the United States had really wanted to bolster the civilian government, why did it leave it flailing? An oversight? A question of old habits dying hard? A matter of practical convenience? Or an indication that in Washington’s decades-long preference for dealing directly with the military in Pakistan, nothing has really changed? [...]

If you went to an extraterrestrial planet and saw this going on, would you land?

Posted by lillian_g | Report as abusive

[...] was completely dependent on the military and the ISI to tell them afterwards what had happened. In the chaotic aftermath which followed bin Laden’s killing, the civilian government missed an opportunity to assert its authority over the military, which [...]

before the indian bloggers use this space to discuss their domestic social security issues, reuters has a separate blog fo the indian issues, let me suggest to pakistani leaders that they stop displaying medals on the chest from now on.
being a strategic partner of usa means nothing more than being colonised by the imperialist usa. no other country in the world would allow their infra struczure for use by foreign convoys without any toll and custom duty. pakistan current civilian govt. is made up of incompups!

Rex Minor

Posted by pakistan | Report as abusive

Keith,

I have a few brief questions and would appreciate if you answer:

1. What is your position on Kashmir, do you think that dispute with India causes all the strategic depth/nurture terrorists argument against Pakistan’s security establishment? Do you think resolution of disputes with India will make Pakistan a better country?

2. What is your position on India, do you agree they are Pakistan’s enemy no. 1 posing an existential threat?

3. Given CIA’s clandestine network, its adversareial relations with ISi, is it true there is an outside hand in destabilizing Pakistan? To put it bluntly, is CIA working against Pakistan?

4. Despite all of Pakistan efforts, if the war is lost in Afghanistan, will Pakistan be punished? If yes in what way (diplomatic isolation, sanctions etc.) ?

5. Lets suppose Pakistan gives up its strategic depth/harboring terror/double game policy etc. Pakistan accepts all demands placed on it. In return will the US and west force India to settle Kashmir dispute?

-Umair

=====

Apologies for a delayed response. But here’s my take

1) Kashmir is for Pakistan, India and Kashmir to sort out. The rest of us really don’t care. We only worry about it because there’s the faint possibility that the dust from a mushroom cloud might come our way.

I really don’t think, however, that militancy in Pakistan is caused solely by Kashmir and/or that it will be solved if Kashmir is solved. We’ve seen Kashmiri Jihadists increasingly become associated with the global Jihadist movement. If they are already branching out, why would they suddenly close up shop if Kashmir is solved.

2) From everything I have seen in my career, I do not believe that India is an existential threat to Pakistan…ANY MORE. In the past, maybe. But then, the situation of having a country divided, with a large adversary in between was always tenuous at best.

Pakistanis are free to believe what they want. But I (and most analysts around the world) are hard-pressed to see what benefit would accrue to India from Pakistan becoming unstable or collapsing. If you have any ideas, I’d like to hear them. I have to come across any hypothetical scenario where India gains on its security from a fractured Pakistan. They simply end up trading one threat (the PA) for another (fanatic anti-India jihadis). If you think differently, articulate it for us.

3) Same as 2. I’m not going to discuss conspiracy theories with you. I generally don’t like getting my blood pressure up by talking to the insane. All I will suggest is that there is no logic and zero security gains to be made by anyone from an unstable Pakistan. Forget unstable. Even left to their own devices while stable and semi-prosperous, Pakistanis can cause global security headaches (AQ Khan network). I can only imagine the arms bazaar that Pakistan’s generals will run if the country becomes unstable. This is not in anybody’s interest.

4) Yes. I’m sorry, but Pakistan just has not done enough. Yes, Pakistan has had thousands of soldiers die. But at least some of that blood is on the hands of Pakistanis who have chosen to shelter and support those who would kill innocents in the West, in India, in Afghanistan and even in Pakistan. Unless Pakistan comes fully clean post-Afghanistan, I cannot foresee anything but isolation. Once the world is not being held hostage by supply lines running through Pakistan, there will be very little leverage for Pakistanis to get out of truly being held accountable. At that point, it will be decision time. Make your bed with killers and you will be isolated.

5) How can the US and the West force India to “solve” Kashmir? We really have no real leverage over India. It is however, in the interest of the West to encourage India to settle the Kashmir dispute. And I would actually suggest that it is also in India’s long-term interests to solve this problem.

More broadly, I don’t see why Afghanistan should be tied to Kashmir. Is a stable Afghanistan not in Pakistan’s interest too?

But on Kashmir itself. “Solving” this is going to be quite hard. Everyone loves to bring up the UN resolution. Most don’t know what it says. It requires full withdrawal of all Pakistani forces from Kashmir (and that’s AK and Gilgit-Baltistan). It’s also debateable as to how valid a plebiscite would be today given that both sides have seen significant demographic changes. The Pakistani portions have seen huge influxes of non-Kashmiris from other parts of Pakistan. And the Indian side has seen an exodus of groups like the Pandits and other minorities because of violence against them. Would Pakistan agree to a full military withdrawal in accordance with the UNSCR? And would both sides agree to a plebiscite only applying to the original inhabitants of the region (and/or their descendants)?

And what about if the Kashmiris just want independence? What if they don’t want India or Pakistan? Are both countries willing to honour their wishes in such a scenario (which is certainly a possible outcome)?

So when you say that you want the West and the USA to compel India to “solve” Kashmir, you can understand that the situation is quite complex and the West would much rather that Indians, Pakistanis and Kashmiris work it out themselves.

Posted by kEiThZ | Report as abusive