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Saturday, 31 January 2009
Police Chief Nawabzada Humayun Jogezai , son in law of the Balochistan Chief Minister, is involved in target killing of Hazaras in Quetta.....
Source: Hazara News Pakistan - http://hazaranewspakistan.wordpress.com/2009/01/28/the-gang-behind-target-killing-of-hazaras/
Quetta January 29: Target killing of Hazaras in Quetta started since 2000 when Sardar Nisar Ali Hazara was attacked by “unknown” gunmen. His driver succumbed to severe injuries and died, while Sardar recovered the injuries.
In February 2001 five other Hazaras died in another terorrist attack on a passanger van.
Later on June 8, 2003 “unidentified” terrorists killed 12 Hazara policemen in Quetta.
Just a month after this tragic incident on July 4 2003, 2 suicide bombers blew themselves up in a Hazara mosque killing about 60 people. It didn’t stop here.
On March 2, 2004 a group of suicide bombers attacked a Muharram procession killing 80 Hazaras and critically injuring another 150.
In 2005, another major suicide attack was foiled when some Hazara policemen, risking their lives, encountered with suicide bombers hiding on the route of the Ashura Procession. The Hazara policement killed all three terrorists.
Though apparently the series of Hazara target killing seemed sectarian, but the real story behind the scene is ethnic. The militant group Lashkar-i-Jhangvi has been claiming responsibility for most of the attacks on Hazaras. After the suicide attacks of 2004, security forces arrested 5 high-profile masterminds of Lashkar. They were involved in all the attacks on Hazars since 2000. Balochistan High Court sentenced them to death; but last year, in 2007, all the five terrorists broke away from a high-security jail in Quetta.
During the series of attacks on Hazaras, the roles of some high-profile security officials have been controversial. Police Chief Nawabzada Humayun Jogezai is prominent among them. Mr. Jogezai, son-in-law to current Chief Minister Nawab Raisani, was the In charge of City Police Station. He ordered policemen to open fire on Hazara protesters on 6th July 1986 killing, about 25 Hazaras. Following this, Mr. Jogezai was transferred out of Quetta city. With his departure from the city, the situation calmed down and business of life got normal.
With the passage of time, Mr. Jogezai was promoted to Deputy Inspector General (DIG) Police. He came back to Quetta in 2003. With his arrival, terrorists once again attacked on Hazara police cadets, killing 12 on June 8, 2003. Mr. Jogezai, being the police chief of Quetta, could not make any success in arresting the culprits. Some Hazaras even suspected Mr. Jogezai was behind the attack on Hazara police cadets. With DIG Jogezai in Quetta, 2003 and 2004 proved the most tragic years in the history of Quetta. Suicide bombers attacked on Hazara Mosque 2003 and Ashura Procession in 2004, killing over 100 Hazaras. During the riots after the Ashura attacks, eyewitnesses claimed Anti Terrorists Forces (ATF) opened fire on Hazaras and, killing than a dozen mourners.
Here another name came on scene. Anti-Terrorist Force SP, Rahim Mandokhel, was said to have ordered ATF forces for targeting Hazara mourners. Later, the Judicial Tribunal Report of Balochistan High Court, probing the attack on Ashura Procession 2004, released on June 29, 2004, clearly said that Anti-Terrorist Force led by Rahim Mandokhel was involved in firing on mourners.
During the Ashura Procession attack riots, ATF forces killed about 40 Hazaras. Later on, after large protests by Hazaras, Humayun Jogezai and Rahim Mandokhel were transferred from Quetta. A new Police Chief, Shoaib Suddle (Now Director General of Intelligence Bureau, IB), played a vital role in breaking the circle of masterminds of target killings of Hazaras. During his appointment in Quetta, five masterminds of Lashkar-i-Jhangvi were arrested and later sentenced to death by a court. Mr. Shoaib Suddle, relative to former President General Musharraf, was transferred from Quetta. Security in Quetta remained calm till 2008.
Once again Nawabzada Jogezai came back to Quetta after the new Chief Minister Nawab Raisani’s government was formed. Right after his arrival, five masterminds of Lashkar-i-Jhangvi, having links with Ramzi Yousaf of Al-Qaeda, broke away from a high-security ATF Jail in Quetta last year. Regardless of the slow and corrupt system that failed to carry out the punishment, the escape was more serious question raising doubt on ATF and its jails. How could high-profile terrorists escape from a high-security Jail where a mosquito can’t fly?
With the beginning of 2009 and just months after Jogezai’s appointment in Quetta, several attacks were carried on Hazaras. In a riot after 2 Hazaras were gunned down in July 2008, police and ATF forces once again opened fire on Hazara protesters, killing 6 people in Hazara Town. Provincial Minister Jan Ali Changazi, talking to media, strongly condemned ATF for killing innocent citizens. The situation got severe when two weeks ago a Hazara Deputy Superintendent Police (DSP) Hassan Ali and 3 others were killed. Despite several target attacks on Hazaras in January, City Police Officer Humayun Jogezai failed to arrest any terrorists. We lost a great leader, Hussain Ali Yousufi, on Junuary 26. Mr. Yousafi had been critical of Police role in arresting the terrorists. Following the riots in which non-Hazaras burnt down private property, Mr. Jogezai warned to deal with with the protesters with iron hands.
This gang is not limited to CCPO Nawabzada Jogezai and SP ATF Mandokhel. Two other names are also taken by some sources. DIG Operations Wazir Khan Nasir and SP Investigation Ismail Lehri are also said be part of the gang. Sectarian elements such as Lashkar-i-Jhangvi are given free hand.
The Hazara Delegation, comprised of Hazara leaders and politicians formed after the martyrdom of Hussain Ali Yusafi, will demand President Zardari and Prime Minister Gilani to appoint honest police officers in Quetta, ones who are committed to keeping the city and its people safe. The Hazara people are peaceful, and demand and deserve a peaceable environment for positive contribution to the society.
PML-N’s dangerous gamble
IN a democracy, the right to protest is fundamental and, if conducted peacefully, should not be opposed. From this perspective, the PML-N’s decision to throw its weight behind the lawyers’ protest in Islamabad on March 9 is well within the norms of democracy. Moreover, the PML-N has not reached this point in undue haste: it joined the federal cabinet after signing the Murree Declaration which called for the restoration of the pre-Nov 3, 2007 judiciary and, after the PPP-led government failed to fulfil its promise, the PML-N has lobbied from the opposition for the full restoration of the judiciary for nearly nine months now. The government’s claim that the vast majority of the deposed judges have been reappointed and, therefore, the lawyers’ movement has lost its raison d’être is weak. The central figure in the judges’ issue is deposed Chief Justice Iftikhar Chau-dhry and until his restoration it is difficult to argue that the lawyers and their supporters have no reason to protest.
Yet, though we accept the justness of the lawyers’ cause and the PML-N’s right to support them, we question whether now is the time to return to the politics of agitation. The transition to democracy which began last February is still at a delicate stage and the challenges facing the country — from militancy to the economy to political stability — are immense. While the principles of democracy are clear, so is the ever-present threat from undemocratic forces in the country. The history of street protests in Pakistan suggests that what begins as a genuine grievance snowballs into a systemic crisis and is exploited by others to undermine a fragile democracy. Tens of thousands of protesters converging on Islamabad and engaging in a stand-off with the government is a situation that has the potential to deteriorate into an ugly confrontation, in which the only winners will be the undemocratic forces. The judicial institution is a key pillar of a democratic state and its integrity and independence must be defended. But Pakistan is one of those unfortunate states in which upping the ante in defence of one institution runs the risk of undermining other institutions. For all its defects, after nearly a decade Pakistan has a parliament that is genuinely elected and includes the representatives of every major party. It is there that the judges’ issue must be pressed, for the sake of the judges, parliament, the people — and democracy itself. (Dawn)
|And the drone policy continues…|
| Saturday, January 31, 2009|
Pakistan abdicated its right to be taken seriously long ago when it first agreed to assist the US in fighting the Soviet occupying forces in Afghanistan, hosting, training and arming the Afghan mujahideen, and then did an about-turn in the wake of the 9/11 attacks to enable America to occupy the same country. Both decisions were made primarily at the behest of the US to advance the American agenda without calculating the consequences that such a policy would have for Pakistan. Pakistani society was radicalised due to the fallout of this policy and the consequences are now in evidence all over the country.
It is meaningless to indulge in a debate on whether the US is simply informing Pakistan, as Mr Gates disclosed about its drone attacks, and that too after the strikes have been made, or there is some kind of understanding between the two countries on the issue. In either scenario, the US doesn't want a negative answer. Conveying the information about the missile strikes to Pakistan is considered good enough and apparently non-negotiable. If the US hasn't already secured an understanding from the Pakistani government about the necessity of carrying out the drone attacks to target Al Qaeda figures, it could possibly do so by offering some carrots or by wielding the stick. Having given itself the right to launch pre-emptive attacks anywhere in the world to prevent harm to the US, superpower America is confident that it cannot be made accountable for its actions in our lopsided world where might is always right. Using this right, the US has attacked and occupied countries and bombed faraway places. it has gone too far in its revenge after 9/11 and created for itself a lot more enemies than it previously had.
In terms of airstrikes, Pakistan has suffered more US attacks than Syria, Yemen and Somalia for the simple reason that its tribal areas have been marked as a safe haven for Al Qaeda militants. All these countries are Islamic, just like Iraq and Afghanistan that are under US occupation, and this is a major reason for Muslims to complain that they are the real target of the US-led Western war against terror. It is true that some Al Qaeda operatives have been killed in the drone attacks and others are still hiding in the tribal areas or elsewhere in Pakistan, but the civilian casualties far outnumber of Al Qaeda militants eliminated and the outcome has been a further increase in anti-US sentiment. Still, the US is convinced that its policy is working as the drone strikes are considered an effective tool to hit Al Qaeda-linked militants and deny them safe havens in the tribal borderland. There is no realisation that this policy is destabilising Pakistan and making it increasingly difficult for its weak and directionless PPP-led coalition government to continue cooperating with the US.
Also, the missile strikes in Pakistani territory don't seem to have lessened the resolve of the Afghan Taliban or weakened their resistance against the US-led NATO forces in Afghanistan. Instead, the resurgent Taliban have forced the US to send another 30,000 troops over and above the 75,000 foreign forces already in Afghanistan by opening new frontlines and spreading their presence to 72 percent of the Afghan territory as a recent report by a European think-tank observed. If the US and its allies with all their might and technology cannot defeat the largely resourceless and outnumbered Taliban in Afghanistan, where questions of sovereignty have long been put to rest, how is it possible for America to destroy Al Qaeda and its allied Taliban and jihadi groups through occasional drone attacks in Pakistan's tribal areas? Killing a few Al Qaeda operatives or Pakistani and Afghan militants once in a while may provide a sense of achievement to the US military but it cannot be part of a successful long-term policy to combat militancy and extremism. Militant groups such as Al Qaeda and Taliban have a remarkable capacity to replace fallen comrades and attract new recruits, more so since the cause has a religious dimension. The motivation is to liberate your homeland from foreigners and the enemy is America. (The News)
The writer is resident editor of The News in Peshawar. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Ghost Of TK Says:
January 31st, 2009 at 3:42 pm
Why is it that the “Violation of Pakistan’s sovereignty by American Drones” is WORSE than the “Violation of Pakistan’s Sovereignty by Taliban Drones”
Why do those who bemoan the US drone attacks overlook the breaches of Pakistani State’s sovereignty by Talib Faggots?
P.S. US Drone violations can be technically fixed by two things:
1. Acquisition of said drones by Pakistan clandestine services.
2. Sharing of intelligence.
But, How shall we stop the Talib Faggots from trampling all over Pakistan’s sovereignty?
Are the Talibs and the US Drone Masters NOT morally equivalent? or shall we say equally morally depraved?
Muhammad Usman Says:
January 31st, 2009
Crush talibans with full force, zero tolerance.
This menace has to go.
Some A hOLES WERE praising changez khan when he entered baghdad, he slaughtered them first.
Why dont these taliban sympathizer understand , ther throats will cut first, if god forbid, these evil people advance.
January 31st, 2009
P.S. US Drone violations can be technically fixed by two things:
1. Acquisition of said drones by Pakistan clandestine services.
2. Sharing of intelligence.
But Who TF in the first place trusts Pak Army and its secret services. Wernt they hunting with the hound and running with hare all through the Mush era. Drones attacks started when the US finally got the wind of our double faced strategy of trying to appear controlling the fire while actually fanning it clandetinely. Simulateous and mutually oppossing actions of ISI’s overt and covert wings with the knowledge of GHQ have led us to the compromisg position that we find ourselves in today.
Here Dr Manzur Ejaz explains our dilemma:
When it comes to dealing with the Taliban and the US, the people of Pakistan seem to have a schizophrenic mindset. The average Pakistani rejects the Taliban’s interpretation of Islam but does not approve of the US strikes on them. He dislikes US influence but praises the rulers who can get more economic aid from Washington. He knows that Pakistan’s security forces have not succeeded in halting the Taliban advance so that in many areas the state has no writ; and yet he does not want the US to violate the country’s ‘sovereignty’.
Unfortunately, such self-contradiction is not limited to lay masses. The most powerful institutions of the state are either afflicted with the same malaise or have chosen to encourage a mindset prone to it.
Muhammad Usman Says:
January 31st, 2009
how ,when and who will be able to have dialogue with Taliban and have peace in return?
ANP has done peace deals with these and in result asfand was attacked.
Yo did that in waziristan and you got more violence
|Replicating the Al Anbar model in FATA?|
| Saturday, January 31, 2009|
Al Anbar is a region in Iraq that was devastated by Al Qaeda inflicted violence. Several Sunni tribes of the region formed an alliance, supported by the US, and took up arms against the terrorists. The tribes successfully controlled Al Qaeda terrorism and stabilized the region. In media it was called 'Al Anbar Awkening'.
All over the world think tanks studying the situation in FATA debate and discuss whether an Al Anbar style awakening is possible in FATA? Can FATA tribes take up arms against the Taliban and Al Qaeda? In my opinion there is tremendous potential for an Al Anbar style awakening in FATA. But there is one huge obstacle: the mistrust of the tribes in the military leadership, especially the intelligence agencies. The Taliban and Al Qaeda have been target killing tribal leaders and so far the military has failed to protect the latter. So far no one has even been officially accused or arrested of the target killing of more than 200 tribal leaders.
The target killing of the tribal leaders started in South Waziristan almost at the same time when the US was bombing Taliban and Al Qaeda hideouts in Afghanistan in 2001 and the militants ran towards Waziristan. They were not welcomed by the tribal leaders. In order to have a strong foothold in Waziristan, the militants killed more than 120 tribal leaders. Clearly the then government of General Pervez Musharraf was playing a double game. On one hand it joined the US led war on terror, on the other hand it allowed the militants to kill the tribal leaders and replace the tribal order with the Taliban order.
Next the killing spree was taken to other tribal areas including Khyber, Orakzai and Bajaur agencies. There is a strong perception among many Pakhtun that this killing was carried out with tacit consent of the intelligence agencies of Pakistan to create full leadership space for Taliban in the Pakhtun tribal society. This is the key obstacle that is preventing the remaining tribal leaders and young people in FATA from taking up arms against the Taliban and Al Qaida.
Despite this there is still a strong potential in FATA tribal leaders and young people to challenge the terrorists. I conclude this from the surveys conducted by AIRRA, an independent think tank working on human security, regional cooperation and radicalization, previous events in the area and my personal discussions with young men and women of FATA: They pointed out that in tehsil Pranghar of Momand Agency, the people rose against the Taliban as soon as the Taliban first assaulted Momand Agency. Consequesntly, Tangi in district Charsadda is safe because of this event. Since 2004, we find sporadic uprisings against the Taliban but due to the inability of the Pakistani security forces, the leaders of Qaumi Lashkars (national laskars) were mostly target killed by the Taliban. If the elders and the youth of the Pakhtun belt are taken into confidence and assured that an anti-Taliban tribal army will not be marked for target killing, the uprising can succeed.
But for that to happen Pakistan army and the government of Pakistan have to take some confidence building measures to restore the faith of the tribes. I had discussions with some tribal men and women during my recent visit to Pakistan. They suggested the following as confidence building measures. One, some, if not all Taliban leaders must be target killed by Pakistan army. Two, all security forces must be issued a kill at sight order against the first and second layers of all Taliban and Al Qaida groups in Pakistan. Three, the government should announce head-money for killing or capturing any top, second or third level leaders of the Taliban. They also said that the Pakistan army must closely coordinate with the tribal armies made against the militants. They pointed out that the tribal armies had been fighting for days and Pakistan army, stationed near by never showed up to help the armies besieged by the Taliban till the armies were massacred by the Taliban, armed with much more sophisticated weapons than the tribesmen. They said the tribal leaders must stay in some kind of hot line communication with the top leadership of Pakistan army and government and in case of any Taliban attack, Pakistan army must send air borne commandos to help the tribal armies. They also said if necessary Pakistan air force must carpet bomb the Taliban and they are not averse to the ISI buying some suicide bombers in some kind of intelligence cover and sending them to bomb the Taliban leaders in meetings, just like they bombed the tribal jirgas in FATA.
I would request the government of Pakistan and the leadership of Pakistan army to engage in discussions with the tribal leaders to work out details to form tribal armies, to take on the Taliban. I would request fellow citizens all across Pakistan to morally support such tribal armies and build up pressure on Pakistan army to stand by the tribal armies until the Taliban are controlled and writ of the government restored. I would also request the international community to keep financial plans ready for prompt reconstruction and development of FATA after the elimination of the Taliban and Al Qaeda. (The News)
The writer is a research fellow at the Centre for Interdisciplinary Gender Research, University of Oslo, and a member of Aryana Institute for Regional Research and Advocacy. Email: email@example.com
For a sample of the success of the Iraq Operation, read this op-ed on BBC Urdu dot com published 30 January 2009.
Iraqi PM hails vote as 'victory'
Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Maliki has hailed a largely peaceful vote for new provincial councils across the country as a victory for all Iraqis.
Voting was extended by one hour due to a strong turnout, including among Sunni Muslims who boycotted the last polls.
The first nationwide vote in four years is being seen as a test of Iraq's stability ahead of a general election due later this year.
Thousands of soldiers and police were deployed around polling stations.
The election is also being seen as a quasi-referendum on the leadership of Mr Maliki.
"This is a victory for all the Iraqis," he said, after casting his vote in Baghdad's highly-protected Green Zone.
Video Story of Swat Pakistan, a heaven turned into a hell by the Taliban and their accomplices in ISI
This is about Swat, a city of breathtaking natural beauty turned into a nightmare by those who use the name of Islam but all their actions are against Islam.
An excellent analysis by Rabia at Grand Trunk Road
Has anyone seen this hour-long edition of Geo Investigates on the topic of Swat? There were an enormous number of issues with this show. First of all, he interviewed a bunch of people, who wanted Shariah. Then they spent a really long time talking about the speedy justice offered by the Taliban in the most propagandistic of ways — they showed the 3 day trial process that occurs, then the Taliban lightly lashing someone, and then patting him on the back as he got up. There was a long discussion about why the people of Swat have not had access to speedy justice since the 70s. Of course there is truth in this, but it is also standard Taliban propaganda that this journalist was basically doing for free. Not only that but he also got local bureaucrats to basically agree with him.
Considering the fact that journalists are not allowed in Swat, he must have received special permission and protection from the army. He extensively interviewed Maj. Gen. Athar Abbas and the interesting (and disgusting) thing was that when he would do a little section on say, speedy justice of the Taliban, our proud army spokesman, Athar Abbas, would sadly nod his head and say something like “We are all to blame” (i.e. this insurgency was a natural consequence of the existing social conditions in Swat).
It was also really comical watching Athar Abbas talking about how the army is still acquiring the technology to jam Fazlullah’s radio station. The weak explanation he gave was that the latest technology enables the Taliban to move their broadcasting equipment, even on motorcycles and the army didn’t have the technology to counter this.
Then, this journalist actually got to meet and interview Muslim Khan, Fazlullah’s second-in-command. This makes absolutely NO SENSE to me. I guess journalists can do whatever they want, but I do get the feeling that this guy was there under the protection of the army. (this might not be true). In which case, why couldn’t the army take out Muslim Khan?
It should be pretty obvious to anyone watching this program that this journalist and Athar Abbas were both pushing the idea that this situation is not recoverable and also, is what the people want. It’s very convenient for this guy to put up all these interviews of people asking for Shariah, etc, since people of Swat are not allowed to speak out against the Taliban on pains of death (not that this journalist mentioned that little problem). This entire show was essentially army propaganda to negotiate and settle.
Geo Investigation Part 1
Geo Part 2
Geo Part 3
Geo Part 4
Geo Part 5
Why Swat was let down
The Prime Minister’s Interior Adviser, Mr Rehman Malik, has told the Senate that a new strategy had been worked out to combat militancy in Swat but he was prepared to discuss it only in camera. He appeared confident that the terrorists would be flushed out of Swat “in a few weeks”. As he spoke, the army renewed its operation in the valley targeting the Taliban hideouts with artillery and helicopter gunships. It appears that a new vigour has come into the military effort to liberate the people of Swat from the tyranny of the warlord, Fazlullah.
The Senate also heard some of the surveys carried out in the Tribal Areas by Pakistan Institute of Legislative Development and Transparency (PILDAT), making clear what the people really thought of the Taliban. To questions whether they approve of the Taliban governance, their policy of destroying schools, blowing up CD shops and enforcing their brand of sharia, all responses up to 90 percent were in the negative. This explodes the “theorisings” of the many TV critics of military operation — “this is not Pakistan’s war” — in the region. What was shown repeatedly and recklessly on private TV channels in the past as the local population’s support to the Taliban and their opposition to Pakistani troops fighting “America’s war” has now been revealed as pure fabrication and mere opposition politics.
Mr Malik also stripped the veil from those elements who have been active in the commission of terrorism in Swat. He named “Al Qaeda, Tehrik-e-Taliban as led by Maulana Fazlullah, Tanzeem-e-Islami, the Tora Bora group, and the Qari Mushtaq group”. He could have named a few more but that may have revealed flaws in the policy of the state towards “non-state actors” that it employed as “freedom fighters” in the past. More precisely, giving more details would have revealed the folly of not getting rid of the terrorist outfits instead of allowing them to change their names under flimsy legal justifications and letting them function as charity organisations. In short, one can say that the state’s policy of allowing multiple centres of power to emerge in the country under the guise of jihad has facilitated the possible emergence of many “statelets” within Pakistan from where the world could be threatened.
The “supply” connection of South Waziristan with Swat was also brought out by Mr Malik when he said that warriors and suicide-bombers were supplied by a Taliban commander named Qari Hussain Ahmed, through Maulana Namdar. Since eyewitnesses of the Swat mayhem have seen groups of non-Pakhtun foreigners beheading Swatis at will, it cannot be ruled out that Al Qaeda is strongly represented here. Mr Malik says that Swat got less attention from the army because of the distraction of Bajaur and Mohmand in the neighbourhood. Thus one won’t be surprised in some future time to learn that Al Qaeda leaders like Osama bin Laden, Ayman Al Zawahiri and Baitullah Mehsud took their R&R in Swat because of its exemption from the attention of the state.
The people of Swat have paid with their lives and their way of life because of the past flip-flop of policy and strategy in Islamabad. Additionally, the ANP government has suffered immeasurably because of this dereliction of duty and responsibility. The people of Swat had opted for the secular-nationalist ANP after rejecting the clerics who had a soft corner of the sharia of Fazlullah. The elected ANP leadership in Swat was cruelly treated and made to flee the area while Islamabad was distracted by the internecine activities of the politicians. The “unanimous” resolution of the parliament actually tells the army to “get out of the Trial Areas” while it now transpires that the people of Swat were actually praying for the Pakistan Army to come and relieve them of their torture. (Daily Times)
Friday, 30 January 2009
Let us build Pakistan
Welcome to our critical reflections on Pakistan's politics, society and arts. In the main, the blog offers a selection of editorials and op-eds from the Pakistani and international press. The blog is a project of 'Critical Supporters of Pakistan People's Party' (CSPPP); syndicated since June 2008.
Critical Supporters of Pakistan People's Party (CSPPP)
Formed in June 2008, this group is committed to providing constructive criticism on the policies of Pakistan People's Party while remaining committed to the original 1970 manifesto of the party based on the following four principles:
Islam is our Faith
Democracy is our Policy
Socialism is our Economy
All Powers to the People
For further details or to be a part of this endeavour, contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Veteran Pashtun leader defies Swat Taliban
* Three-time attack survivor Afzal Khan on top of Taliban’s most-wanted list
* Favours military action, says government has to regain control
ISLAMABAD: Veteran ethnic Pashtun politician Muhammad Afzal Khan has refused to leave home in Swat, even though the Taliban have repeatedly tried to kill him, and says the people should stand up to the militants.
Swat was, until recently, one of Pakistan's top tourist destinations, but the Taliban have all but taken over the scenic mountain valley, imposing their severe interpretation of Islamic law and slaughtering opponents with impunity.
Many families have fled, while residents say many policemen have either deserted or simply refuse to act against the Taliban, who have shot, blown up or beheaded numerous officers.
But Khan, an 82-year-old former cabinet minister known as Afzal Lala, or Afzal the Elder, has chosen to stay on to try to rally resistance to the Taliban.
"I'm from this soil. It's my home. My tribe is here," Khan told Reuters in a telephone interview. "I want to live among my people. I won't run away."
The Taliban's grip on the valley, just 130km northwest of Islamabad and away from the lawless Afghan border, highlights Pakistan's deteriorating security.
The government has vowed to regain control of the valley by talking to the Taliban who lay down their arms. But there's no sign of that.
Top target: The Taliban have tried to kill Khan three times and have placed him on top of a list of politicians and prominent residents they have demanded appear before their ‘courts’. Residents refer to the list as a ‘hit list’.
Khan blames the government for failing to provide proper security, leading to the exodus of fearful people from the valley, and says people have to stand their ground. "I ask my friends and the people of Swat to return to their homes. It's our land. It's our problem, we have to sort it out."
As well as attacking the security forces, the Taliban have banned girls from classes and destroyed about 180 schools while broadcasting edicts and threats over their illegal FM radio. They have threatened to throw acid on men who do not grow beards and recently killed a woman singer and left her body in a square in the valley's main town.
Military action: Khan is a member of the Pashtun nationalist Awami National Party that rules the North West Frontier Province and is part of the ruling federal government coalition.
The party opposes the Taliban, many of whom are also Pashtun, and several of its members have been killed by the militants and its leaders have been targeted by suicide bombers. Most party leaders have fled from Swat.
Khan is in favour of military action against the Taliban, saying the government had to regain control. "If the government fails, if your last option is exhausted, then this region will fall into their hands," he said, adding that talks should only start “if militants laid down their arms”.
The Taliban, led by rebel cleric Fazlullah, are trying to set up their own administration, including their ‘Islamic courts’, but Khan said no one took that seriously. "I don't accept it, the people don't accept it," he said. But many people failed to understand why the military had not gone after the Taliban, he said. The military launched a big offensive in the valley in late 2007. The Taliban withdrew to the remote side valleys to avoid government artillery and slipped back later.
Khan, who lives in a well-guarded house surrounded by fruit trees, said he had faith. "Being a Muslim, I have faith in Allah. Nothing can happen to me no matter if Fazlullah puts my name on his list or not." reuters (Daily Times)
BBC Urdu dot com:
Link to English and Urdu versions:
This site has moved to hhttp://criticalppp.com/archives/26780, click this link if you are not redirected
The first was: “People now have their reservations about the operation. They ask pertinent questions about it. They see a lack of willingness on the part of the state to curb the militancy. This perception is now held by the intelligentsia, particularly the Pakhtun intelligentsia. They contend that if the state’s military can stand up to a military as strong and large as India’s, how can it not handle an internal insurgency carried out by a few thousand armed men?” (Five thousand terrorists are fighting twenty thousand troops.)
The second serious observation was: “However, even some of the more historically accurate narratives which acknowledge the deep consensual relationship between the religious right and the military establishment do not consider how this relationship has evolved and why the religious right is able to make inroads into society (regardless of whether it is supported by the establishment or not)”.
But one can understand the situation in the light of the media-supported mass sympathy for the terrorists of Lal Masjid in 2007, which redounded to the advantage of the Swat Taliban. Why should the army oppose something that the channels-led people find acceptable? But after more than a year, and despite these channels, public opinion has changed and it is time to grasp the nettle of terrorism-supported parallel government in Swat. (Daily Times)
Another Shia killed, eight abducted from Hangu - Terror of Taliban and Sipah-e-Sahaba reigns the NWFP; Pakistan Army is a silent accomplice....
One killed, eight abducted from Hangu
HANGU: A person was killed and eight others abducted in several incidents of violence in Hangu district of NWFP, official sources said on Thursday.
They said unidentified armed men opened fire on a vehicle near Tutkas graveyard in the district’s Tal tehsil. The passengers were travelling from Kurram Agency to Hangu.
A man, Johar Ali, was killed in the firing, while the assailants abducted the other three men, identified as Malik Askar Ali, Syed Ali Shah and Haji Mali Khel, the sources said.
Separately, unidentified men abducted two persons from Tura Waray road in the Doaba police station precincts. An Afghan private security guard, Syed Agha, was abducted from Tal city, while unidentified men abducted a government contractor, Fazal Akbar, and Imtiaz, an employee of NADRA in Orakzai Agency, from separate areas of the district.
Meanwhile, the Taliban in the neighbouring Orakzai Agency took over two checkposts vacated by security personnel, official sources and locals said.
Speaking on condition of anonymity, the locals said there was no writ of the government in Orakzai, as security personnel have vacated checkposts for fear of the Taliban. The Taliban announced the imposition of sharia in the agency last month, barring women to visit bazaars and banning all modes of audio and video entertainment. (Daily Times)
PAKISTAN: 2 EXECUTED BY TALIBAN IN TRIBAL AREAS
(AGI) - Miranshah, Jan. 29 - Pakistani Taliban are on the attack in the tribal areas, the remote and wild mountain regions at the Afghan border, where the central government has little to say. According to security sources, the guerrillas have captured and executed two individuals accused of collaborating with the authorities. One, a young man in his thirties, was suspected of spying for the American troops, he was shot near Daigan, a village around 40km north of Miranshah, the capital of North Waziristan. The other, a policeman, suffered a similar treatment. He was captured together with four others in Tal, 45km north-east of the capital. The five, all Shias, were on their way to Parachinar, capital of another tribal area, Kurram. The policeman was killed, his companions were kidnapped and taken to an unknown location. The Taliban, like their allies of al-Qaeda, are all Sunnites who accuse the Shias of heresy. Meanwhile around 50 rebels have started a raging battle against the regular troops of Pakistan near Bannu, in the north-western province of North West Frontier, close to the border with North Waziristan. The rebels were forced to withdraw after two hours of fighting however, leaving two dead and five injured behind.
Shame on extremist Muslims who cannot respect the faith and practices of their fellow Pakistanis.
Mob tries to burn houses of Ahmadis in Layyah
* HRCP alarmed over four children’s detention on blasphemy charges
* FIR says local MNA’s uncle ‘probed’ the incident at his outhouse
By Abdul Manan
LAHORE: A mob – led reportedly by members of banned religious organisations – tried to set ablaze houses of Ahmadis in Layyah on Thursday, a day after four children belonging to the minority community were detained on charges of blasphemy, police and residents told Daily Times.
Twenty policemen had been deployed to the village, a police official said.
Police had registered a case (number 46/9) in the Kot Sultan police station against Tahir Imran (16), Tahir Mahmood (14), Naseer Ahmad (14), Muhammad Irfan (14), and Mubashar Ahmad (45) under Section 295-C of the Pakistan Penal Code.
The Ahmadiyya community has denied the charge, the first ever against children since the Section 295-C was introduced in 1986.
Asma Jahangir, the chairwoman of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP), said that it was heinous to use the law against children. The HRCP was finding facts about the incident, she said, and would soon send a team to Layyah.
Religious scholar Javed Ghamidi said the children were safer in police custody.
The children belong to Chak 172/TDA, a village about 25 kilometres from Kot Sultan. Last week, the locals had stopped the Ahmadi children from praying in the central Gulzar-e-Madina mosque, Kot Sultan Station House Officer (SHO) Rauf Khalid told Daily Times.
But they continued to use the latrines, where they have been accused of writing blasphemous material, according to the first information report (FIR).
Noor Elahi Kulachi – a retired schoolteacher, and, as the SHO confirmed, a member of the banned Sipah-e-Sahaba – complained to Iqbal Hussain Shah, the uncle of the local National Assembly member Saqlain Shah. According to the FIR, Iqbal Hussain called the SHO and the people who had seen the writings to his outhouse, where they “probed the incident” to find the Ahmadi children guilty.
But the local leader of the Ahmadiyya community alleged that Kulachi – who was also a member of Jamaatud Dawa – had pressured Iqbal Hussain to direct the police to register the case, and the latter complied because of the Jamaatud Dawa votebank in the constituency.
Saqlain Shah, an MNA from the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz, denied his uncle had pressured police. But he said representatives of the Ahmadiyya community should have visited his uncle’s residence for the matter to be resolved in line with local traditions, instead of denying charges.
He also said that Ahmadis had first lodged cases against local Muslims (for violating the Loudspeakers Act and under the Maintenance of Public Order) after being disallowed to hold a religious meeting, and should now “face the truth”. He said he would visit the village on Saturday, and that his uncle was trying to pacify the villagers.
The SHO said he had registered the case after consulting the district police officer and a deputy inspector general of police. The inspector general of police had also been informed, he added. (Daily Times)
Tanvir Qaiser Shahid
Mohammad Musa Islam Islam Says:
Some thoughts on Swat: the devastation caused by the army's till-now half-hearted attempts to defeat the insurgents is inexplicable
Friday, January 30, 2009
For months I have been reading assiduously the comments in Pakistani newspapers concerning militancy in the NWFP and FATA. This newspaper, in particular, has distinguished itself in its coverage of this tragedy. The courage, passion and tenderness that writers have shown in their articles and letters suggest to me that, contrary to appearances, Pakistan may still have a future. Of the regions now riven with bloody strife, the one about which I should like to comment here is Swat.
I have read everything I can find about Swat, the Taliban, and the trouble there. I have also spoken to many friends with close blood ties to Swat, who also have homes there. I visited Swat often when it was still a place of peaceful beauty and great hospitality. However, in all my reading and discussions, the things most absent have been reliable answers to centrally important questions. We seem to know much less than we need to know, if we are to understand what is happening in Swat.
Here are some of the things we don't know. When I say "we," I mean well informed people outside what Pakistanis call the "agencies." We don't know what, if anything, these "agencies" know. We don't know who is financing the militants. We don't know how many hardcore militants there are, nor how many supporters they have, nor what proportion of their supporters is coerced into their support. We do not know to what extent the militancy in Swat is a popular uprising. We don't know how many of the leaders of the insurgency are not Swatis. We don't know how they are being supplied and resupplied. In short, we don't know anything we would need to know if we were the people responsible for a successful suppression of the insurgency. I have heard lots of speculative answers to these questions, but I have never been offered anything as useful as a fact.
Nevertheless, some facts do seem to be emerging from this ghastly turmoil. A group of people, whom others call Taliban, are committing utterly disgraceful acts of brutality upon people who have done no one any harm (unless we were to share with the perpetrators of these atrocities their psychopathic views of good and bad). They are acting contrary to those principles of Islam that the vast majority of decent Muslims accept. Their actions are abhorrent. It is possible that few of their supporters approve of the atrocities committed by some of them, but we don't know what proportion approves or disapproves of these actions. Theirs is a guerrilla war. All guerrilla wars share some common elements: first, they cannot prosper without the support of a significant proportion of the population among whom they hide (the "support" need not be voluntary); and, second, in order to defeat a well organised, well-financed insurgency, the opponents of that insurgency must field at least ten fighters to every one fielded by the insurgents.
From what I have read, there is nothing to suggest that the Pakistani army is fielding ten fighters for every militant, so, according to military experience, it will fail. The soldiers fielded by the government are mostly Punjabis, who may or may not be willing to die for the salvation of Swatis. The result is that the military is resorting to tactics (shelling, bombing, mortar fire, etc.) which are sure to kill and injure many more civilians than insurgents, thus causing even greater suffering and further hatred of the government.
From what I read, the devastation caused by the army's till-now half-hearted attempts to defeat the insurgents is much, much worse than the atrocities being committed by the insurgents; though the insurgents' atrocities are more colourful.
That such a strategy should pass without outrage in Pakistani society is evidence of the tendency for outraged people to think unclearly. I read daily in the Pakistani press strident criticism of America's overlooking of the fact that its policies to kill a few militants may often lead to many civilian deaths. Yet when it happens in Pakistan, the occurrence passes with much less criticism, or is altogether ignored.
A brief survey of Swati history shows that the people of that beautiful valley have suffered repeated invasions from stronger groups, who have snatched their land, wealth, homes and daughters and who have tortured, imprisoned, expelled or killed all who opposed them. (Sound familiar?) The only good leader they seem to have had was the last Wali, under whose wise and fair guidance they showed themselves to be the nicest people on earth. A friend of mine knew the last Wali and asked him what was his secret of good governance. The Wali replied "impartiality." But ever since the Wali was deposed in 1969, impartiality is exactly what few Swatis have enjoyed. Quite the contrary, they have had removed from them the close personal care of their indigenous leader, only to be oppressed by greedy, arrogant, brutish, insensitive outsiders whose power base was not gained by popular approval but was imposed by force from a central government and its cronies, indifferent to the interests of the indigenous habitants of Swat.
Can one blame them for perhaps turning to terrible people for defence against those whom they may have seen as worse people? Alas, they may now have discovered that their hoped-for saviours are actually as bad as, or worse than, their oppressors were; it seems now to be their dreadful fate to be killed by their "liberators" too.
Why is no Pakistani government capable of impartiality? Why has it always lacked all sense of social justice? What Swat needs is the dedicated attention of well-financed people who really love its people. Richard Holbrooke's comments about America being unable to afford to create a Valhalla in Swat bode ill for the Swatis. Were the Americans better informed they might know that before 1969, Swat was a Valhalla that financed itself. America's policies destroyed it.
The writer is a freelance contributor living in Karachi. Email: email@example.com
Friday, January 30, 2009
by Ayaz Amir
A pundit, so-called, is meant to clarify things, to throw some light where darkness reigns. But I am confused myself and seek an answer to some very confusing questions.
My preferred Chief Justice of Pakistan, and like me the chief justice of choice of a vast number of Pakistanis, is Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry. If chief justices were to be chosen in an election he would win hands down, leaving all rivals far behind.
But what confuses me is the matter of his restoration. Can he be restored without President Asif Zardari being shown out of the presidency? Can a pistol be put to Zardari's head to make him agree to restore Chaudhry and the other deposed judges to their rightful positions? In other words, can this be done as long as the PPP is in power?
So what is the long march announced by the lawyers' community meant to achieve? They plan a sit-in before parliament and the Supreme Court (both being close to each other) in order to force the government's hand. But will the government's hand be forced? It won't be unless the lawyers storm the Supreme Court and physically install Iftikhar Chaudhry in the chair he once occupied. Can the lawyers do this? Are they even aiming to do this? And is the government in Islamabad so weak as to allow this to happen?
The lawyers' movement has shown amazing tenacity. When cynics expected it to wither away it survived and kept going. Zardari maintains it was Benazir Bhutto's 'wisdom' which created the conditions for General Pervez Musharraf to take off his uniform. This is selective and self-serving history.
What made Musharraf a liability in American eyes (and the US was his protective godfather) was his fatal weakening by the lawyers' movement. The path to democracy thus was paved by the sacrifices rendered by Pakistan's lawyers and the historic stand taken by the Supreme Bench headed by Justice Khalilur Rehman Ramday -- the bench which ruled against Musharraf and restored Chaudhry as chief justice.
But despite these striking and unprecedented successes the lawyers' movement was not able to ignite a mass movement on the lines of the 1968 movement against Ayub Khan or the 1977 rightist upheaval against Zulfikar Ali Bhutto. People lined the routes of the journeys Iftikhar Chaudhry made to various bar associations, and they showered him with more rose petals than perhaps anyone else in our turbulent history, but they erected no barricades and stormed no Bastilles.
From which we might infer that while the long march will excite public interest and people with great interest will watch the event unfolding on television, we are not going to see a million men and women, or even half that number, marching up Constitution Avenue and occupying the Supreme Court..
As for the sit-in, even if it is impressive, it's a bit hard visualizing it lasting for too long. If an army marches on its stomach, as Napoleon said, for a sit-in to go on, the least you need are adequate toilet facilities, which are rather skimpy around the place where the sit-in is supposed to take place.
Lawyers have every right to agitate for the rule of law and the restoration of the rightful judiciary headed by Iftikhar Chaudhry. They owe this to themselves and to the people who were so inspired by their movement. But their leaders should not set unrealistic aims. No street agitation can bring Iftikhar Chaudhry back and the movement's leaders do themselves no service by spreading the impression that somehow this miracle will come about with their long march.
Aitzaz Ahsan, Ali Ahmed Kurd, Munir A Malik and Hamid Khan -- some of the leading lights of the lawyers' movement -- are experienced enough to know that not every agitation is guaranteed to attain success. They should be satisfied if there is an impressive popular turnout on March 9. But if they aim too high and then fall short, they will only be paving the way to disillusionment and a collapse of morale.
Indeed, making it sound as if the long march will lead to decisive results is a sign not of confidence but desperation. This is a country where dictators have regularly stamped upon the constitution, where even elected leaders have not had much respect for the rule of law, where the highest judges at every turn in our history have provided succour and relief to military usurpers. Undoing this legacy is a vital task. But what makes anyone think that this task can be accomplished between one sunrise and one sunset?
Indian independence was achieved after decades of struggle. It took almost a century before apartheid in South Africa was buried. Behind Barack Obama's rise to the presidency lies the saga of the civil rights movement.
Yes, we need an independent judiciary, one that serves the people and defends the laws of the land, one that is not a handmaiden of tinpot dictators. The rule of law must prevail. But to hitch these absolutely vital aims to a single day's events is to betray impulsiveness, not resolve or strength of purpose.
Iftikhar Chaudhry and his fellow judges, Bhagwandas and Ramday chief amongst them, have performed what in Pakistan's context can rightly be described as an historic role. They upheld the rule of law and in so doing stood up to a dictatorship, contributing mightily to its decline and fall. What if the democratic government replacing that dictatorship has betrayed popular expectations, and its own pledges, by not restoring the Supreme Court sacked by Musharraf on Nov 2, 2007?
Which worthwhile struggle is without its share of betrayals or setbacks, of hopes unfulfilled? Ask the Palestinians, ask the ghost of Martin Luther King. Was Mohammad Ali Jinnah happy with the moth-eaten Pakistan he got? He wasn't but he had no choice: he could either take it or leave it. No revolution in history has lived up to its promise. Things desired are different from what they turn out to be. Which doesn't mean that we fold up our hands and give up the fight. But it does mean we not lose sight of reality.
To repeat the obvious, unless our lawyer friends know something that we don't, Zardari is not about to fall. And as long as this remains the state of play Iftikhar Chaudhry is not about to be restored.
What I also don't understand is our confusion about parliamentary sovereignty. If parliament is sovereign, then the matter of the judges' restoration should be left to parliament to decide. What the mood in that supposedly sovereign body may be, may not be to everyone's taste or liking. But then if parliamentary sovereignty is to be something more than a catchphrase, we are left with no choice except to abide by whatever dominant mood therein prevails.
I hate to say it but there is no majority backing in the National Assembly for the restoration of the pre-Nov 2 judiciary. Tragic but true. Lawyers have every right to protest against this state of affairs. They have every right to carry on their struggle. But it is scarcely wise to mislead public opinion, and perhaps mislead oneself into the bargain, by setting impossible deadlines.
Huge rallies against the Iraq war have been brought out in western capitals, far bigger demonstrations of popular fervour than anything we can imagine in Pakistan. But these rallies have been part of a movement which still continues. Pakistan's lawyers have done a great job and public sentiment is with them but it will be to their good to realise that the road ahead is long and arduous.
It is true there is much anger against the Zardari dispensation. Hopes raised by the last elections have given way to a feeling of disillusionment. But then, however hard it may be to swallow this, Zardari is democratically-elected president of Pakistan and the PPP enjoys majority support in the National Assembly. It took an election, not an armoured brigade, to see George Bush stepping into the sunset. We have to get used to the idea, however uncomfortable it may be, that we will have to wait for an election to see the last of the Zardari era.
Our political class refuses to learn from history. At a time when national unity should be the most precious commodity of all, knives are being sharpened for a fresh round of political confrontation, the PML-N talking in terms of popular mobilization and the PPP fishing for trouble in Punjab. Pakistan is facing serious threats, perhaps to its very existence, because of the fallout from America's war in Afghanistan and the growing Taliban threat in Swat and FATA. But the political class, not for the first time, is demonstrating its incapacity to see beyond its short-term interests. The people of Pakistan deserve better. (The News)
January 31st, 2009
If Mian sb really means business then he and the lawyers should take the long march to RawalPindi instead of Islamabad and should make Dharna right in front of GHQ.
It was the then COAS Gen Mush, the Corps Commander and the head of ISI(Gen Kiani) who were responsible for the Martial Law of nov 3, 2007 and the removal of Iftekhar Chaudhry. If they mean business they should go to Rawalpindi. Dharnas in front of Presidency Islamabad were OK as long as Musharraf occupied it but now with a Civilian president there it would only be a show for getting political mileage. It is GHQ who is responsible for giving Mush the departing guard of honour, it is the sitting COAS who allowed Mush to occupy Army House for more than the legally permitted time, it is the military top brass who is not letting Dr Abdul Qadeer Khan free. First at least define the real enemy.
But that is perhaps asking for too much. The Dharna Brigade do not want to take on the Army. Thats why Iftekhar Chadhry and the Supreme Court allowed Musharraf to contest elections in Uniform. That is the reason why Justice Iftekhar didnot name the “third person” responsible for his removal on Nov 3, 2008 in front of Pindi Bar Club.
The real Bastille to storm lies in Rawalpindi. But it would need real-life courage to go there.
In my assessment PPP is not quite ready to fight anyone else’s battle, not at least for now. It is in fact trying for a national reconciliation. Neither it needs to prove if it is anti establishment or not, the political history of Pakistan speaks for it.
I rather think that the time is ripe for the new claimants seeking the title of forces of anti-establishment to come forward and offer some real sacrifices. Lets have a shaheed Quaid from PTI, Jamat e Islami or PMLN for a change.
Friday, January 30, 2009
The COAS has said that the militant menace in Swat will indeed be overcome. Visiting Swat, General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani pledged to take measures to restore the writ of the state. Ahead of his arrival in Mingora, the military spokesman stated that 'decisive' action against militants had been planned. All this makes one wonder that why did it take so long for the government to order such action given that a sense of drift had set in the valley for quite some time and dozens of residents had been brutally killed by the militants. The background to the current militancy is that Operation Rah-e-Haq was initiated against the extremists in the valley towards the end of 2007 and was wrapped up in mid-January with the military and the government claiming success. Soon after this, the ANP assumed office in Peshawar, and one of their key electoral planks was to talk peace with Swat's militants. However, this otherwise sensible approach was not responded in kind by the Swat Taliban who in fact began targeting the local ANP leadership soon after the party took the reins of the NWFP government.
But it has almost been a year since that happened and one needs to wonder what took the government [read military] this long to order a fresh operation against the militants especially since with each passing day they only consolidated their grip over the valley – and in fact by the end of 2008 it was widely believed that much of Swat was under the control of Fazlullah and his men. While President Zardari has now been asserting that matters will be brought under control, we can only wonder why this wisdom did not dawn earlier. After all the attacks on schools in Swat, the action against those opposing the Taliban and the expanding control of the militants were hardly a secret. The dangers posed have been highlighted by the burning of a school in Bajaur. Quite evidently, the 'inspiration', if it can be called that, has come from events in Swat. The militant onslaught there must be stopped before the same kind of mayhem is created in other areas of the country.
It is of course better to act late, rather than to fail to do so at all. In this respect, the military's declaration of a new resolve is welcome. On the other hand, there should also be some analysis of what went wrong before. For some time, the ANP has been expressing concern about the state of the operation in Swat. Perhaps if their warnings and their pleas for tougher action had been taken heed of, we would not have faced the crisis we face today. There is a dimension to this which reaches beyond the borders of Swat or even Pakistan. Over the last decade, the image of Pakistan as a safe, civilized country has tumbled dramatically. It is now ranked as one of the most dangerous places on earth. This has affected investment, tourism and a great deal else. Our decision makers must remember that as the horrific tales from Swat make their way into the international media, Pakistan's standing will continue to fall further. This must not be allowed to happen. The military and the government must work together to prove that the suggestions that they have colluded with militants in Swat are entirely untrue. This they can best do by stamping out militancy in the area, apprehending key leaders and restoring to the blood-stained valley the peace its people so desperately seek. (The News)
Thursday, 29 January 2009
Friday, January 23, 2009
Militant, ex-Jihadi among three killed in Mingora
By our correspondent
MINGORA: Militants gunned down Amjad Islam, teacher of a private school who himself waged a Jihad against the Soviet forces in Afghanistan, for not hiking up his shalwar (trouser) above his ankles.
However, the issue did not end here but the militants went to the slain teacher’s house and gunned down his father, Ghani Akbar, a lawyer by profession. The militants later hung Amjad’s body from a pole in the Matta College Square.
Locals said that the militants on Thursday morning asked the teacher of the Hira School at the College Square to hitch up his shalwar above his ankles. However, Amjad told them he was a former Mujahid himself and knew everything about Islam but nobody could be forced to pull up shalwar above the ankles.
Continuing arguments, the teacher said that he had also saw the Taliban rule in Afghanistan who did not force into doing so, then how could they do? The arguments angered the militants and a scuffle took place. Amjad, who had a pistol, fired at the militants, killing Khalid on the spot and wounding two others.
The schoolteacher was trying to flee but the militants fired at him and attacked him with daggers. He was killed on the spot. His body was hung from a pole and warned the locals not to touch his body till Friday morning.
After killing the teacher, the militants scurried towards his house and dragged out his father, Sahibzada Ghani, and sprayed him with bullets. Locals said that Ghani was a religious and humble person and was respected in the area. The body of the schoolteacher, however, was taken to his house after the intervention of a local Jirga.
Imran Khan demands the imposition of Shariah in Pakistan
January 27th, 2009 at 8:51 pm
Imran Khan’s Sharia?
Where is Imran Khan on this?
Why is there no outrage over this? Why aren’t there BLOCK headlines in newspapers across Pakistan about this? Why isn’t PK Politics asking it’s visitors to discuss this? FU*K THE PALESTINIANS AND FU*K THE ARABS!
Ghost Of TK Says:
January 28th, 2009 at 12:42 am
@W.A.N: “Why is there no outrage over this?”
Because brozzer, these are RAW+ISI agents (if you are to believe Qazi’s umreeka-palat lesbian daughter) and this is not the true taliban.
P.S. “Kia yeh waaqi hamari jang hai?”
P.P.S. “Why isn’t there outrage over the army BOMBING the Chechen/Uzbek/Arab Insurgents “civilians and wymmynz und childrenzez? — who are actually ISI RAW agents — but somehow our Islamists feel the pain for these foreign agents all the same.
ppps. chalen choRen.. zara yeh to bataen… “Kia yeh hamaari jang hai?”
P.Q.R.S. Zarrin Mazari is a RAW fabrication. However.. Aafia Siddiki is the present day zul-jinah … Oh the humanity!!! The daughter of the nation, Afia Siddiqui was RRRRRAAAPPEED!!! oh THE HEW-MANA-TEEEEEE!!! GURGLE GURGLE…
Ghost Of TK Says:
January 28th, 2009 at 1:16 am
Meet Rita Katz
Or … How I stopped worrying and learned to love the Zionist infiltrators disguised as “fundamentalist” Muslims
1. Kafir means Kafir Police, Kafir Fauj.
2. Momin means Momin Taliban
3. Wazir-e-Azam is Kharr-e-Azam, Wazir-e-Aala is Kharr-e-Aala
4. Appreciation of the 'beautiful' scenes of slaughtering of the kuffar
5. Good news: So many soldiers killed in India, Mubarak (congratulations); so many Shia killed in D.I. Khan, Mubarak.
6. Announcement of the future line of action and Fatwas, including hit list and prohibition of girls education.
Report by BBC Urdu dot com, Abdul Haye Kakar
|عبدالحئی کاکڑ |
بی بی سی اردو ڈاٹ کام، پشاور
|مولانا فضل اللہ روپوش مگر ان کا ایف ایم چینل اپنا کام کر رہا ہے|
اگرچہ سوات میں دو سال قبل ایک درجن سے زائد غیر قانونی ایف چینل چل رہے تھے اب صرف ایک ہی چینل کی نشریات سنائی دیتی ہیں۔ یہ چینل ’مولانا فضل اللہ ایف ایم چینل‘ کہلاتا ہے۔
سوات کی شدت پسندی کو اگر ’غیر قانونی ایف چینل کی شدت پسندی‘ کہا جائے تو بیجا نہ ہوگا۔ کیونکہ اس چینل نے دو ہزار چھ میں اپنے قیام کے بعد صرف دو سال کے مختصر عرصے میں ایک باقاعدہ مسلح گروپ کی تشکیل میں مدد دی۔
ابتدا میں مولانا فضل اللہ نے لوگوں کا دل جیتنے کے لیے درسِ قرآن، دینی مسائل پر لوگوں کے سوالوں کے جواب اور سماجی کاموں میں ایک دوسرے کی مدد کرنے پر زور دیا۔ پھر رفتہ رفتہ ان نشریات پر ’جہاد‘ کی افادیت کا رنگ غالب آنے لگا۔ اس تبدیلی نے جوانوں کی ایک کھیپ تیار کی، لوگوں کے چندوں سے تقریباً تین کروڑ روپے کی لاگت سے امام ڈھیرئی مرکز کی تعمیر کاکام شروع ہوا جس میں مقامی لوگوں نے بلا معاوضہ کام کیا۔
سکیورٹی فورسز اور طالبان کے درمیان لڑائی کے آغاز کے بعد مولانا فضل اللہ پس منظر میں چلے گئے اور ایف چینل پر تقریر کی ذمہ داری مولانا شاہ دوران نے سنبھال لی ہے۔
مولانا شاہ دوران نرم لہجے مگر طنز و مزاح سے بھر پور انداز میں طالبان کی جانب سے احکامات پیش کرتے ہیں۔ ان کے ایک سامع نے بتایا کہ مولانا شاہ دوران نے سیاسی لیڈروں اور اعلی عہدوں کی پیروڈی بنارکھی ہے جیسےزرادری کو غداری، گیلانی کو گیلنے، وزیراعظم کو خ۔۔۔ اعظم اور وزیر اعلی کو خ۔۔۔ اعلی پکارتے ہیں۔
|مولانا فضل اللہ نے اپنے ایف ایم چینل کے ذریعے علاقے کے نوجوانوں کو متاثر کیا|
رات کے ساڑھے سات سے دس بجے تک جاری رہنے والی نشریات چار حصوں یعنی درسِ قرآن، چندہ دینے والوں کا شکریہ، ’خوشخبریاں‘ سنانے اور دھمکیاں دینے پر مشتمل ہوتی ہیں۔
مذکورہ سامع کا کہنا ہے کہ مولانا شاہ دوران اسلامی تاریخ کے واقعات کچھ اس انداز سے پیش کرتے ہیں جس سے طالبان کی کارروائیاں، جیسے لوگوں کا سرقلم کرنا وغیرہ صحیح ثابت ہوسکے۔ ایک دفعہ انہوں نے کہا کہ گزشتہ رات تقریر کے بعد جب وہ ساتھیوں کے ساتھ بیٹھ گئے تو انہوں نے ان سے ایک جہادی سی ڈی دیکھنے کی فرمائش کی اور بقول ان کے ’میں نے جب سی ڈی دیکھی تو اس میں ذبح کرنے کےاتنے خوبصورت خوبصورت مناظر تھے کہ مزہ آگیا۔‘
وہ اپنی تقریر کے دوران ملکی اور بین لاقوامی سطح پر تشدد کے ہونے والے بعض واقعات مزے لے کر بیان کرتے ہیں جس سے وہ خوشخبریوں کا نام دیتے ہیں۔
مقامی لوگوں کا کہنا ہے کہ ماضی کے مقابلے میں ایف ایم چینل کے سننے والوں کی تعداد بڑھ گئی ہے۔ اس کی وجہ یہ ہے کہ لوگوں کو یقین ہوگیا ہے کہ طالبان ایک قوت ہے اور وہ جو کہتے ہیں کرکے دکھاتے ہیں۔
مقامی لوگوں کا کہنا ہے کہ ماضی کے مقابلے میں ایف ایم چینل کے سننے والوں کی تعداد بڑھ گئی ہے۔ اس کی وجہ یہ ہے کہ لوگوں کو یقین ہوگیا ہے کہ طالبان ایک قوت ہے اور وہ جو کہتے ہیں کرکے دکھاتے ہیں۔
سننے والوں میں زیادہ تر پرائیویٹ سکولوں کے مالکان، ان اداروں میں پڑھنے والے بچوں کے والدین، مینگورہ میں خواتین مارکیٹ کے دوکاندار، این جی او سیکٹر میں کام کرنے والے اور کاسمیٹک انڈسٹری کے مالکان شامل ہیں۔
ان لوگوں سے جب بات کی تو ان کا کہنا تھا کہ وہ شوقیہ نہیں بلکہ اس لیے ایف ایم چینل سن رہے ہیں کہ انہیں اندازہ ہوسکے کہ طالبان کا اگلی ’لائن آف ایکشن‘ کیا ہے، یعنی کس کو قتل کرنے کی دھمکی دی جاتی ہے، سکولوں کے بارے میں ان کی سوچ اب کیا ہے اور جنگ کی تازہ ترین صورتحال کیا ہے۔
اس یف ایم چینل کی نشریات سوات سے باہر مردان کے بعض علاقوں تک بھی سنی جاسکتی ہیں اور ان میں زیادہ تر لوگوں کا کہنا ہے کہ مولانا شاہ دوران کے مزاحیہ انداز گفتگو سے لطف اٹھانے کے لیے وہ ان کی تقریر سنتے ہیں۔
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Will the "Swati Taliban" capture Islamabad or Will Islamabad capture them? An outcome of Musharraf's double-cross policies in the war on terror...
Army will restore writ in Swat: COAS
* Commanders brief COAS on security situation in valley
* Kayani meets Pashtun leader Afzal Lala, lauds his stance against the Taliban
RAWALPINDI: Pakistan Army has the ‘will and resolve’ to defeat terrorists, restore peace and establish the writ of the state in violence-hit areas, Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Ashfaq Kayani told troops during his visit to Swat on Wednesday.
The visit comes a day after the third phase of Operation Rah-e-Haq against the Fazlullah-led Taliban began on Tuesday.
Gen Kayani also lauded the morale of troops. A statement by the Inter-Services Public Relations directorate said the COAS “took stock of the situation” in Swat during the visit.
Military commanders briefed him on the security situation in Swat and Peshawar Corps Commander Lt Gen Masood Aslam briefed him on operational plans, it said.
Gen Kayani gave fresh directions for the operation. The COAS also met notables of Swat and the civil administration.
A private TV channel said he also met Pashtun leader Afzal Lala and lauded his stance against the Taliban. Lala said political leaders would not be able to stay in Swat if they were not protected. He called for more government and media attention to Swat.
Eight bullet-ridden bodies found in Swat
PESHAWAR: Bullet-ridden bodies of eight civilians were found dumped in Swat on Wednesday, officials and residents said. The bodies were found at two separate locations in Mingora. “Five bodies were recovered from one place and three from another,” a security said. It was not clear whether the civilians were killed during the military offensive or executed by the Taliban. Authorities have intensified efforts to win back control of the valley from the Taliban, with several towns under curfew and orders to shoot violators on sight. afp (Daily Times)
Swat, o Swat! Could it be that the former "assets" of the state are now turning their guns on their former benefactors?
The people of Swat are confused. They wonder how the might of the Pakistan Army cannot subdue the Taliban of Swat. The Swat insurgency and the "counter-insurgency" must be given priority attention by the country's intelligentsia.
With the beginning of "Operation Rah-e-Haq" in November 2007 people hoped that security in the region will improve. They were optimistic about the operation and welcomed the military with flowers and garlands. But gradually over time this trust receded and now it is practically non-existent.
People now have their reservations about the operation. They ask pertinent questions about it. They see a lack of willingness on the part of the "state" to curb the militancy. This perception is now held by the intelligentsia, particularly the Pukhtun intelligentsia. They contend that if the state's military can stand up to a military as strong and large as India's, how can it not handle an internal insurgency carried out by a few thousand armed men?
And whenever the state expresses and acts on the will to bring law and order to the region it is able to do so, as happened in the February 2008 election. Before the election everyone was concerned whether the election was possible in the Swat valley. But to everybody's amazement it was not only held but held peacefully, except in one constituency.
People ask who made the "miracle" possible then. Again this goes in the line of the argument that if "powerful state actors" will it then things can be settled in weeks.
The Swat issue started with the advent of the Taliban in Afghanistan. The TNSM was founded in 1989 in Malakand Agency at a time when the Soviets were leaving Afghanistan. The rise of the TNSM in Malakand Division at a time when the Taliban were gaining power in Afghanistan is not mere coincidence.
Overnight an elderly man rose from the hills of Maidan and became a hero. Before that nobody knew who Sufi Mohammad was. And later his movement was crushed in a couple of days because the state willed it – and after that there was complete peace in the valley. Tourists again began to pour back in and life once again became vibrant.
The peace was broken when the son-in-law of Sufi Mohammad gave his first sermon on the FM radio. It was post-9/11, and there was apparently drastic shift in Pakistan's foreign policy. Pakistan became a frontline state in the war on terror, but the Pukhtun intelligentsia thinks – and this is conception shared by many others as well – that its "assets" had to be guarded as well, and hence Swat was made a "haven" for some of them.
The unwillingness of the state to fight the militancy head-on, they claim, was evident by the way it loosened the grip which it had established over the militants in their stronghold of Gut Peuchar in Matta tehsil. Many residents of the valley wonder whether this was done by design.
Another claim is that the tactics and strategies the Swat militants use are not the work of semi-literate mullahs. The intention is to crush any hint of resistance from among the local population and hence the daily killing of people and the hanging of their dead bodies in public squares. Similarly, targeting the leadership is a tried-and-tested war tactic throughout history. Could it be that the former "assets" of the state are now turning their guns on their former benefactors? This is a question on a lot of people's minds. (The News)
The writer is a researcher and has written this under a pseudonym for the sake of his own safety. Email: kheyamkhan @gmail.com