Wednesday, November 30, 2011
Longing for almost fifteen years for ‘Better Pakistan’, in political arena of Pakistan, Imran Khan fights back to get his place in the mainstream politics of the country, by demonstrating the power of his muscles in an unprecedented public congregation at Lahore, stunned both the main political parties, PPPP and PML-N.
The hard-hitting Imran Khan, who is also desirous to get ‘two wickets’ with a ball, asked the rulers to declare their assets and threatened a civil disobedience movement and a countrywide blockade if they did not do so. The roaring Imran, vociferously asked them “Declare your assets or face the wrath of people,” He said declaration of politicians’ assets was necessary for a transparent governance. If politicians did not do so, the PTI would set up a commission to prepare a list of politicians and their assets and take it to court, he said.
In a separate move, the former Foreign Minister , Shah Mehmood Qureshi, joined Imran Khan’s Team , in a handsome gathering at Ghotki , Sindh, though mostly dominated by the followers (Mureeds) of his Spiritual Clan and Gaddi of Hazrat Bahauddin Zikria Multan. Shah Mehmood Qureshi tendered his resignation from the lucrative slot of Foreign Minister, when he was, allegedly asked by president Asif Ali Zardari to declare , American Spy , Raymond Davis , as a diplomat , which he refused. Raymond Davis was forced to release, under the controversial garb of Islamic law of ‘ Diyat’, facing multiple murder charges and under arrest with Punjab Police and intelligence agencies.
The resignation from the minister's slot and membership of National Assembly,
Qureshi also strongly criticized the performance of the government saying one thousand billion rupees have been wasted in granting bail out packages to Railways, Pakistan Steel, PIA and WAPDA. He said the restructuring plan of strategic assets given by Shaukat Tarin has been thrown into the waste papers basket. He termed President Zardari as national security hazard and maintained that under his command, the nuclear assets of Pakistan are not secure. The resignation of the Former Foreign Minister is a major dent and shock for already losing popularity, PPPP, especially from specially from Seraiki belt , and home town of Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gillani, to be more specific.
At the surface, Imran Khan is, vehemently criticizing , the leaders of both main political parties PPPP and PML-N for their alleged massive corruption and eroding the development structure of whole Pakistan. His principal slogans, getting approval, with growing mandate, of masses especially youngsters . The poor and wretched citizens of Pakistan, who are worst hit of unprecedented price-hike , Electricity shortage, energy mismanagement, lesser opportunities for young educated persons, institutionalized Corruption, lawlessness, terrorism , are seeking any ‘emancipator’ to rescue them from the grim situation.
“Pakistan is losing over Rs3,000 billion a year in tax corruption. If it can be tapped, the country does not need foreign aid. Once the government wins the confidence of people, economic woes would simply go away” Imran outcried. PTI Chairman claimed that his party, if comes into power, then it would end corruption, declare an education emergency, improve tax collection, pursue an independent foreign policy, bring Balochistan into the mainstream national politics, end the war on terror and protect rights of minorities and women. The Corruption of ruling elite is ruining the infrastructure of the state . Imran Khan said a country that had “over 180 billion tons of coal reserves could not in any way be called an energy starved state”. There is an equally great potential in hydro-electric resources. “If the PTI can run thermal units even at 70 per cent of their installed capacity, currently running at 25 to 30 per cent, the country will have no energy crisis,” he said.
Pakistan’s Foreign policy , is mainly , allegedly dictated ‘ by the Military Establishment, especially , on Kashmir, Afghanistan , India and USA. Even it has been reported in the press that Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto and civilian Presidents or Prime Ministers, either were not allowed or to be discouraged to visit all the nuclear installations of Pakistan. Since the creation, Pakistan’s foreign policy, is mainly tilted towards Americanization, with the handsome approval of both Military and civilian authorities of the successive regimes. While Pakistani Nation, by virtue of its social thinking , are anti-Americans, in majority. They have witnessed the series of worst experiences and betrayal at many critical stages of Pakistan’s history. The ‘seventh Naval Warship’ was never reached to support Pakistan Army during Indo-Pak War in 1971, in which Pakistan was divided. USA masterly planned to defeat USSR, another counter-part super power by using expertise of Pakistani Security and Intelligence Agencies in Afghanistan. The Afghan War led Pakistan to multiple international and national crises.
Unfortunately, Pakistan’s Military Establishment and ISI became the principal targets of terrorism and international subversion. The primary reason was; due to blind following the ‘orders’ of Capitol Hill. The present series of ‘ following the orders ‘ was started when 9/11 incidents happened and the then Chief of Army Staff and President Musharaf , bent down to the wishes of USA. On the other hand Pakistan suffered immense loss to this ‘so-called’ War against Terror , lost almost 40 thousand civilians and security personnel. Recent NATO attacks on Pakistan Army Check Posts is an eye-opener for Pakistani Military Establishment, forced everybody at the helm of all affairs to block the supply-line of NATO and asked USA to leave the Shamsi-base. Imran is of the view that American highhandedness and accesses is due to the ‘ blind-following’.
Imran Khan is the principal protagonist of an ‘Independent Foreign Policy’ , to be controlled by elected governments. On foreign policy, he said the focus should be on “independence, not slavery: the PTI will want friendship with everyone, including the Americans, but on the basis of equality. The Americans will be told that Pakistan cannot fight their war and Pakistan Army cannot do its bidding. “Ties with China will form the cornerstone of PTI’s foreign policy. I am leaving tonight for China at the invitation of the Chinese government and friendship with them will be pursued to the fullest.”
To form an independent foreign policy , is an uphill task for Imran Khan, if he is elected on top slot. Imran, once blue-eyed of General Musharaf, is allegedly considered as ‘ brainchild’ of Inter Services Intelligence and Army, by his opponents maintained that drone attacks were part of the problem rather than a solution. “They are feeding terrorism. The PTI bigwigs believe that they are pushing over one million armed Pakhtuns to the other side of the divide. Once Pakistan quits the US-sponsored war on terror, these one million armed tribal people will take care of militancy and terrorism in their areas. It is simply a matter of making the right choices.” He has personified his repentance on his certain affiliations with former dictator General Musharaf , whose political party APML, is still in the offing to take off.
It is very difficult to understand . that if Army or ISI , as alleged by most of the analysts, is supposed to form foreign policy and pursuing the alleged American Agenda, then how they can support Imran Khan ?? If the latter is principal protagonist of an anti US led War in the region against Terror and a ‘ well-defined role’ of Army as laid down in the Constitution, how can Military Establishment accept to leave ‘dictating civil governments’ on Foreign policy matters . It will be acceptable by Army and ISI that they quit the role of forming policies, though due to corrupt and weak governments. When asked by a journalist that Imran khan is being supported, funded and patronizing by ISI, PM Gillani maintained “ Agencies are working under Prime Minister, not under Imran Khan” . In fact , Imran Khan responded well to the ‘ irritating question’, stated, “ More the politicians accuse me of having patronization of ISI, more people throng to join PTI”( as ISI is considered as source of Power in the political circles) .
Recently, Military Spokesman Maj General Ather Abbas also rejected a news item appeared in the national press that Imran Khan met US Embassador in the presence of DG ISI, Lt General Ahmed Shuja Pasha .“The allegation is an attempt to divert the attention of the people from the fast-declining popularity of PML-N because of the failure of its government in Punjab and its anti-people policies that it practiced during its two tenures in the federal capital,” said Dr Arif Alvi a leader of PTI maintained. Imran Khan must be ready to face moral corruption charges and allegations of a primary figure for elections, patronized by Jewish lobby, besides ‘ man of the match’ candidate of Army and Agencies.
A cricketer-turned-politician, Imran Khan, who has been in the political wilderness of sorts, has matured in the last three-four years. His popularity graph has shot up only recently. Until a few weeks back he was known for being a single-man political party. He has to play a long innings , he is accused of gathering the ‘ turn-coats’ in his team, which included Mian Azhar, a former governor of Punjab, EX-MNA Faiz Tamman some ex- MPAs and members of former Uninion councils. He needs to demonstrate utmost leadership political qualities to keep intact all segments of the PTI tiers. It is fact, ’ There's many a slip 'twixt the cup and the lip’ before going for general Elections . As soon as, the popularity graph will jump, some more turncoats are expected to join, simultaneously he must be prepared , that there might be possibility of some desertions too. As it is rumored that PTI leader , Shireen Mazari is thinking to quit PTI, who was aspiring an ‘ an Apple’s Eye’ position in PTI. During the early days, Journalist Naseem Zehra also quitted PTI , when it was in an embryonic stage.
Pakistani politics is roaming around SHO Police and ‘ patwaari’ , which supports the landlords and feudal mindset. Every elected representative, has an earnest desire to manage the appointment of police officers and revenue officers in their respective constituencies, to influence the voters and maintain their threat perception or ‘tyrannical policies’. The next Election will also be subservient the subject vicious circle. To break this circle is a Herculean Task - A circle, in which all tycoons from Civilian and Military Establishment may directly or indirectly involve. Though Imran has planned to computerize all the Revenue record, but he will face immense resistance from all the corridors of power.
To get sudden surge in political popularity is just termed as his ‘Maiden Century ’. He has to play, while keeping an eagle’s eye on every political ‘fielder’ of the Political ‘Ground’ with the ‘opponents’ , also to dispel the image of an ‘arrogant’ Captain for his rapidly growing magnitude of his Team-mates. Any midterm Elections in country will be harmful for him. Imran Khan , so far, did not chalk out policy , how to pitch candidates in rural areas, as it has different standards and political game-plan. Secondly, in the absence any ' independent Election Commission', will be available to ' play' a fair 'game' or otherwise, that too under the aegis of President Zardari? Political pandits have to observe , how Karachi behaves him on 25th December 2011, where he is scheduled to address the public. So far he has managed to clip certain definite votes from almost every constituency of at least Punjab province. He has very limited choices to have political alliances with the present political parties , but the possibility of some settlement with lesser parties like JI , cannot be ruled out. However, he is the most popular leader in overseas Pakistanis and he can expect immense support from them during the general elections, as compare to that of any other political leader.
Sunday, November 27, 2011
Pakistani Military Establishment is under severe pressure of the Pakistani Nation after the un-provoked attack by NATO gunship helicopters on Pakistani troops that allegedly killed as many as 28 soldiers, including one Major and one Captain each, also left several critically injured. Apparently a willful and well-calculated attack, two km inside Pakistani territory , on a military check post Salala, must have clear approval of the Capitol Hill. It will further deteriorate already tense multilateral relations between the USA, in the recent chronology of events which begins from the forced evacuation of US Spy , Raymond Davis and then Killing of Osama bin Laden , after violating the Air borders of Pakistan. Ridiculously the western Media claimed that it was an act of self-defence. While, the question of military preparedness has also arisen , that why Pakistan Air Force didn't react to the 'US Operation' and shoot down helicopters, which remained in Pak Air space for ninety plus minutes. Similar, security lapse was observed during OBL case in Abbotabad.
The claim, which is highly incredible , personified and referred to ‘the Kabul-based official, a joint US-Afghan force operating in the mountainous Afghan frontier province of Kunar was the first to come under attack in the early hours of Saturday morning, forcing them to return fire. There was no physical authenticity of the ridiculous claim was unearthed nor it was ever reported to Pakistani Government .
The high death toll from an incident between two ‘supposed; Military allies suggests NATO Gunship helicopters and jets strafed Pakistani positions with heavy lethal weapons.
Pakistani Nation , which demonstrated severe reaction against her own Defense Forces and Inter Services Intelligences , after failure to protect the Air Space violation by US Authorities in OBL operation and Naval airbase attack in Karachi, will consider it a fuel to injury , if there is not effective measures may be taken practically. More than forty thousand Pakistanis including troops from security forces , were killed in the alleged ‘ so-called’ War on Terror. Almost all political parties , including newly ‘revitalized’ political force , Pakistan Tehreek-e Insaf, led by glamorous Imran Khan, vehemently opposed the US policy and becomes principal vocalist to revise, rather to take U-turn towards US WAR in Afghanistan , which is allegedly hampering with security issues of Pakistan. Pakistani Government can not afford opposition to a highly charged anti-US Public feelings , which may further aggravated with the due course of time.
Visibly furious over the NATO attacks on Salala post, the government on Saturday reacted sharply , called emergency meeting of the Defence Committee of the Cabinet (DCC), the country’s highest forum for defence policy consultation and coordination. The meeting was convened to discuss the NATO air strikes and make strategies for a response. The retaliatory decisions , included closure of supply routes used NATO forces in Afghanistan and once again asking the United States to vacate Shamsi airbase, within 15 days . Shamsi airbase originally is owned by UAE and previously used for drone operations. The government also said it would carry out a thorough review of its cooperation with the US and NATO.
The DCC also decided that the government will revisit and undertake a complete review of all programmes, activities and cooperative arrangements with US/NATO/ISAF, including diplomatic, political, military and intelligence,” said a statement issued by the Prime Minister’s Office after the meeting. Reportedly, it is believed, It was originally proposed to unilaterally terminate the NATO supply route, but ultimately the DCC settled for keeping it indefinitely closed even as it had been squelched soon after the incident and the decision by the country’s top civilian and military leadership appeared as a formal closure announcement. The decision which moved from permanent closure to just termination , may apparently show, a liberal way-out for the expected “visits of top US officials” for luring Pakistani Government or may be Military Establishment to sit on a table for more ‘perks’ in the ongoing “war against Terror’ or to re-negotiate the ‘ terms’. Earlier the Pakistani Government witnessed a stormy visits of US top officials , including , Hillary Clinton, Senator John Kerry and Mullen, when the former took a stern stance against the US wishes in Raymond Davis and OBL Killing cases, though succumbed to US pressures, later. Even Pakistani Government failed to negotiate the terms of release of Dr Aafia Siddidue in lieu of Raymond Davis’ release.
Earlier , the supply route remained closed for 11 days last year after NATO helicopters penetrated into Pakistani airspace and fired at a paramilitary force, killing two soldiers. The issue was resolved after apologies from US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and NATO generals. The sudden stoppage of supply through Chaman and Torkham border crossings will paralyse the NATO operation, as 40% non-weapon transportation was being routed through the Pakistan which are the preferred routes for being economical and easy approach.
Moreover, NATO has developed an alternative, though too expensive, northern route through central Asian states as a contingency for a situation where the Pakistani route is closed due to variety of reasons.
Pakistani Military establishment and government , who are visibly disturbed over the revelations of Pakistani –turned US national business tycoon, Mansoor Ejaz, in which, allegedly , Pakistani Envoy to USA, Hussain Haqqani was made Scapegoat, to avoid possible tussle between the powerful state institutions, may get an opportunity to reunite and sit together to face the US hostility on the same pitch with a joint will. It was for the third time this year that the US has been asked to vacate the Shamsi airbase, 300kms southwest of Quetta. But this time it has been given a 15-day ultimatum for leaving the airfield, which is under the United Arab Emirates’ control.
The two previous occasions when similar demands were made from the US were after the CIA operative Raymond Davis episode and then in the aftermath of Osama bin Laden denouement. Drone operations from the base were believed to have ceased in April and the facility is now supposedly being used for logistic purposes. Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani on Saturday strongly condemned NATO’s helicopters and fighter aircraft’s unprovoked firing on two Paki-stan Army border posts in Mohmand Agency resulting in loss of 24 security forces officials.
He said that the “NATO/ISAF’s blatant and unacceptable aggression resulted in loss of precious lives of Pakistani soldiers, said an ISPR press release. While lauding the effective response by the soldiers of Pakistan Army in self-defence, he directed that all necessary steps be taken for an effective response to this irresponsible act. The release said that on the night of November 25 and 26 NATO helicopters and fighter aircraft carried out unprovoked firing on two Pakistan Army border posts in Mohmand Agency.
Keeping in view the giving scenario , Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar may cancel her trip to Bonn for a conference on Afghanistan and the country may be represented there at a lower level. A final decision may depend on how Washington moves to prevent the frayed ties from taking yet another slide.
A spokesman for NATO's International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) said it was "highly likely" that aircraft which had been called into the area to provide "close air support" to troops on the ground was responsible for causing casualties among the Pakistani soldiers.
The Pakistani nation rejected the Obama administration’s promise to conduct a full investigation. Earlier, Hillary Clinton, the US secretary of state, and Leon Panetta, the defense secretary, issued a joint statement saying they had each spoken to their Pakistani counterparts to express their condolences for the loss of life.
Some political analysts believe that US has tried to check the pulse of Pakistani Military Establishment as to take revenge against ISI and Pak army, which curtailed the CIA operations by imposing strict Visa sanctions and security clearance. In the recent weeks, Pakistani security agencies have strict surveillance of US vehicles , which are plying outside Islamabad without assigning any plausible reasons. Many US vehicles were sent back by Pakistani Authorities to US Embassy in Islamabad. On many occasions, Pakistani Security forces confiscate illegal weapons from US embassy vehicles en-route to KPK and Punjab provinces.
Pakistan has to redesign its foreign policy towards its relations with USA. The meager 'perks' in shape of Kerry- Louger Bill, so far didn't pay any dividend to immense losses to Pakistani Nation, while its National security , rather its existence is threatened. In case, Military Establishment and Pakistani government role-back their decision due to expected immense pressure from US Authorities or to strike a deal for more ‘ perks’ in the name of national Interest ; it will not only further damage the confidence of Pakistani nation over its defense Establishment , rather Nation will plunge into a chaos of deprivation, which will be a national disaster.
Thursday, May 26, 2011
In a dramatic and unprecedented move, Israeli citizens held protest demonstration infront of US Embassy, Tel Aviv , Israel on Sunday (22May). The demonstrators symbolically wore nooses around their necks in protest entitled, "Obama, Israel won't commit suicide." The protest comes in response to US President Barack Obama's Thursday (19 May) Middle East speech in which he called for a solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict based on the 1967 lines with mutually agreed upon land swaps. The protest was staged under the aegis of radical ‘My Israel Movement’ and several other NGOs and public segments. The analysts believe that Conservative voices in the Jewish community in USA have expressed anguish over the speech. The Zionist Organization of America called on AIPAC to rescind the invitation to Obama. Even some of Obama's longtime political colleagues were unsettled.
"You can't unilaterally tell Israel you have to go back to '67," said Ira Silverstein, a Democratic Illinois state senator who once shared office space with Obama in the state Capitol. "He wasn't elected president of Israel. He was elected president of the United States.", As reported by Los Angles Times ,
Whatever the situation and mayhem, observed in Tel Aviv or Washington, one similarity in Pakistan is felt , in the protest or critical voices against Obama , in handling Osama Bin Laden’s venture, exposing First Black President’s desire to expand the political vote bank for next presidential Elections; though both matters are that of opposite in nature . Netanyahu, however , has already realized the rhetoric of Obama, as latter is focused his eyes for another four years in the White House Office.
In Pakistan , the political situation directly affects aversely, with weak foreign policy and decision – making process at top level, rather absence of a full-fledged Foreign Minister incarnates, the interest of the State and the government managers, in dealing and executing the foreign policy, which is the core course of action for the existence and solidarity of any state.
American President Obama ordered to conduct ‘ an Operation ‘, by violating the sovereignty of the country, stunned the nation; Pakistan’s Armed Forces and Intelligence agencies, ISI in particular. After delayed response ,Pakistan’s military and security officials delivered details about the US operation in which Osama Bin Laden was killed. Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani, heads of all three armed forces and DG, ISI attended the meeting. The ISI chief General Shuja Pasha asked the nation and parliament to forgive him and stated that if the parliament orders his resignation he would be willing to step down. He also delineated a weak defense system against US technology. After that the relations between CIA and ISI got at the lowest ebb.
The killing of Osama Bin Laden is still shrouded in mystery, still many questions are unanswered. Iranian President Ahmedinejad revealed that Osama bin Laden was a prisoner in US custody for "sometime" before he was killed by the American Commandos. "I have exact information that bin Laden was held by the American military for sometime... until the day they killed him he was a prisoner held by them," the president said in a live interview on Iranian state television.
"Please pay attention. This is important. He was held by them for sometime. They made him sick and while he was sick they killed him," Ahmadinejad added. He accused US President Barack Obama for announcing the Al-Qaeda leader's death for "political gain." "What the US president has done is for domestic political gain. In other words, they killed him for Mr Obama's election and now they are seeking to replace him with someone else," Ahmadinejad focused to a ‘conspiracy theory’. On May 4, Iranian Defence Minister Ahmad Vahidi too had cast doubt on bin Laden's death, saying there were "ambiguities" over the way he was killed. The Americans "said they threw his body in the sea. Why did they not allow an independent expert to examine the body to say if it was Osama bin Laden or not?" Vahidi argued.
General Pasha, during his briefing to the Pakistani parliament exposed that Pakistan is facing several troubles due to unilateral policy towards USA, he also indicated that the dire need of revamping of US policy . He also suggested that ISI and Pak Army have no reluctance, if a probe committee or Commission to fix the responsibility is formed. The ball is still in court of the parliamentarians. But the weak legislatures did not able to identify the members of the proposed Commission yet. The principal protagonist , Chudhary Nisar Ali Khan announced few tentative names, but so far it is not finalized, which is top most priority for ensuring the security of the country an the Military institution. General Pasha, the ISI chief submitted that 'future relationship with the United States about what parliament decides, we will follow you.' The surrender of General Pasha and submissive gestures of General Kiyani shocked the brains at Capitol Hill, forced John Kerry to have a stormy visit to Pakistan , who foresaw a sudden U-turn of Pakistani Establishment after the ‘issue’ of violating sovereignty of Pakistan to kill OBL, added by growing discontentment among the masses against the Drone Attacks, in particular. He managed to salvage the ‘bilateral’ relationship with little changes in the Pak-US security and diplomatic relations, as Obama announced to inform the Military establishment of Pakistan before any possible hunt-attack on intelligence information to capture or killing the high-valued target.
Few days after the incident, Capitol Hill observed that the weak political leadership of Pakistan and equally impotent opposition , failed to pursue the initiative what General Pasha, proposed in the parliament, then, President Obama took another U-turn and reiterated to take unilateral action , like that of Osama bin Laden, within Pakistan, if any high value-target is tracked down. Talking to BBC, when asked what he would do if one of al-Qaeda's top leaders, or the Taliban leader Mullah Omar, was tracked down to a location in Pakistan or another sovereign territory, he said the US would take unilateral action if required.
"Our job is to secure the United States," Obama said. "We are very respectful of the sovereignty of Pakistan. But we cannot allow someone who is actively planning to kill our people or our allies' people. The indication and suggestion of Pakistan’s top Security Manager, General Pasha, to revamp Pak US Policy contained a message which requires more exploration of hidden and painful stories , yet to be told?
Delay in implementing the parliamentary resolution against US drone attacks and intelligence failure in locating OBL’s hide out in Pakistan, will be similar to multiplication of challenges faced by government. There is a lull before the storm in the capital Islamabad. The public furry needs a catharsis and their apprehensions must be addressed. PML-N and Tehreek-e-Insaf threatened to cut NATO supply line if drones don’t go quiet. He said that his party called for formation of an autonomous High-Powered Commission, which became part of the parliamentary resolution. PML-N wants to uncover culprits behind the negligence, which caused intelligence failure in Obama hiding and tarnished image of Pakistan in the world.
Pakistan second major security breach was witnessed Sunday (22 May) , six terrorists infiltrated into the PNS Mehran Naval Airbase Karachi, equipped with Rocket –Launchers and other sophisticated weapons. It is worst ever disastrous failure of intelligence and security lapse in the history of defense of the country. Pakistan has lost almost half of its sophisticated long-range maritime snooping and strike capabilities, which apparently master-minded, by Tehreek –e –Taaliban that ended on Monday after a 15-hour gun-battle, left 10 security persons and four attackers dead. At least two of the five P-3C Orion long-range patrol aircraft, worth Rupees 6 Billion Pak rupees, supplied to Pakistan Navy by the US, were destroyed in the attack.. These P-3C Orisons were packed with radars and weapons like the E-2C Hawkeye 2000 airborne early-warning suites and anti-ship Harpoon missiles, from the US as part of the around $15 billion military aid to combat the terrorism .
The failure of Pakistan’s Intelligence agencies aroused many suspicions about the defense and security capabilities in the present scenario. The Nation is still in the state of trauma after the attack to capture Osama bin Laden, questioned the defense managers that terrorists who walked through a small water channel and entered through an abandoned house, exposed the preparedness of Armed forces and gave a lead to the enemy about slackness , even at the military headquarters. There were clear indications that some Americans and Chinese personnel were also present at the base during the attack.
The recent attacks on GHQ, Naval base, Naval buses, ISI buildings and Military personnel, Military units, clearly show that the enemy to Pakistan has access to achieve their targets, with better intelligence then that of Pakistan. That intelligence information was so accurate that , it could not be disseminated to the terrorists without a defense expert, agent handler or some disgruntled elements within the armed forces set-up. The identification of two most precious aircrafts could not be possible either by a lead or information leakage . Pakistani security forces have to face two challenges ; to identify and locate the disgruntle elements within their folds ;secondly they have to revise the defense policy as per the aspirations and satisfaction of the masses. Unfortunately, the present government lacks the political will to deliver the goods which create ambiguity in devising strategy for the armed forces itself. Pakistani Media , first time openly criticized, the failure of Armed forces in combating the terrorism, even at their own top security Zones. Some analysts attributed the continuous failure to de-tracking Army itself from professionalism to business oriented projects, which is not their primary task of the forces, spurred by military dictators to get support of red- tapers.
Pakistan has to identify its real enemy. Just to focus towards the conventional enemy, is not sufficient intelligence. India, is not to be figure out only as a threat to the national security. Pakistani Defense Managers have to think beyond regional enemies also. So far nation has failed to understand that who patronizes the Pakistani brand ‘Tehreek-e Taaliban?? Nation did not accept the meager reality, that just banned groups or militant outfits are funding and extending training to the terrorists? Why our intelligence agencies failed to break the network of Pakistani Tehreek-e Taalibaan?? How a spokesman issues statements and accept the responsibility of terrorist attacks?? That too within minutes of attack??
To pursue and strengthen the relations with China after the diplomatic debacle with USA, noticed during OBL venture, Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gillani rushed to Beijing , where Chinese leadership promised to accord urgent delivery of a fresh batch of 50 Advanced multi-role JF-Thunder fighters . Pakistan has a deal to get about a dozen F-16s from the US but these are too expensive and too few for Pakistan’s comfort. Hence the Thunder option. While an F-16 will set back Pakistan by a cool $125m, the J-15 will cost ‘only’ $25m. That means $1.25bn for a batch of 50. The same number of F-16s would have cost $6.26bn.
The Pak- China revitalization of security contact is not welcomed at Capitol Hill. Cheap weaponry of China verses most expensive weapons may reduce burden on Pakistan’s national Economy and more so there will be no dictations like that of USA. Pakistan lost almost 70 Bn US $ in the so-called War on Terror of US dominated Forces in the region.20 Bn $ US Aid with full of dictations. There can be lot of questions on the technological aspects of Chinese weapons? But the junk of present F-16 are getting either old or requires overhauling, another expensive orchestration. Obama is planning to relinquish Afghanistan Venture prior to his Elections? But needs a presence in the region with a robust and logical reasoning for his voters , which is being focused and followed by his subordinates, trying to make international community understand that Pakistan’s Nuclear Arsenals are under threat of fundamentalism and ‘indigenous’ extremists . The ‘efforts’ of Obama are considered as suspicious by majority of Pakistanis, as they question ; if AMERICA is not safe due to ‘ fundamentalism’ and ‘extremists’ , functioning in the bordering areas of Pakistan , then USA has to adopt the policy like that of Israel- to protect the national security interests of Pakistan, practically which is other way round.
USA will never think to kill or become cause of killing of 37000 Israelis to curb the menace of threat to its national security?? As same numbers were killed in Pakistan, due to her ‘ War against Terror’. Obama must realize this fact, that growing hatred against America in Pakistan , is a national security threat itself , which needs to be addressed . American Nation can not afford more ‘ attacks’ of hatred in the region. The brains at Capitol Hill must realize that ‘Might’ can’t fight against ‘Right” .
The independent analysts believe that there must be more such like attacks on Pakistan’s security and Defense installations in the near future. The Defense Committee , headed by Prime Minister failed to chalk out any robust defense policy for the Nation, which may restore the confidence on their Armed Forces (25 May). So far no disciplinary action has been taken by the miserable and weak Prime Minister Gillani against the naval officers , who were responsible for the criminal negligence.
Once considered, diplomatically less literate, British Prime Minister David Cameron stressed “allies must work with Pakistan more closely than ever before instead of turning away from it. He said Pakistan had suffered mightily in the fight against extremism. “Their enemy is our enemy,” he opined. He was addressing a joint press conference along with US President Barack Obama at the garden of Lancaster House. (25 May). David Cameron’ finding that “Pakistan had suffered mightily in the fight against extremism” , is infact an encouraging acceptance of the reality , from a close partner of USA. Both David Cameron and Barack Obama have strong realization that Pakistan was crucial for peace in Afghanistan and without Pakistan terrorism can never be defeated . With reference to the war against terrorism, Cameron said: “We can defeat al-Qaeda. The events of recent months give us the opportunity to turn the tide against their terror once and for all. We must continue to destroy their network.”
The British prime minister congratulated the American president on the operation that led to the killing of al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden. “This was not just victory for justice but a strike at the heart of international terrorism.”
David Cameron’s clear conclusion that the West must continue to work with Pakistan. “People are asking about our relationship so we need to be clear. Pakistan has suffered more from terrorism than any country in the world. So far from walking away, we hope to work even more closely with them.”
Obama said Nato forces were “preparing to turn a corner” in Afghanistan. He and Cameron “affirmed the importance of beginning the transition to an Afghan lead for security this year and completing that transition by 2014”. He added: “We discussed the opportunity that exists for promoting reconciliation and political settlement, which must be an Afghan-led process.
What lacks in the policy of Obama towards Pakistan , as a balancing factor, is the ‘less commitment’ and ‘high expectations’. Besides all the negative factors, as exposed in the recent times in Pakistan i.e. lesser political will to combat the oddities, mal-governance, lack of statesmanship, security negligence or massive corruption , USA and the West has realized that only emancipator available to USA to facilitate her in securing release from the clutches of Afghanistan ‘venture’ , is Pakistan . Obama has to devise a clear-cut policy towards Pakistan, as it is very difficult to play’ hide and seek’ or personify a wavering policy of ‘ to be or not be’ to get certain objectives, will not bear any fruit , in the presence of vibrant Media and charged nation, though weak political leadership .
Wednesday, May 4, 2011
In an unprecedented move, former CIA agent and once blue-eyed of USA, Osama Bin Laden, is claimed to be killed by US special commandos, in a small city Abbottabad, Pakistan, somewhat 50 KM away from the capital Islamabad. The most wanted terrorist, was killed in a very controversial manner, during the 40-minute raid, when OBL was fatally shot in the head. After intelligence searches of the compound were conducted, his body was taken into custody at which point genetic and facial recognition tests were performed. After positive identification, and within 24 hours of his death, as claimed by Americans, Bin Laden's body was taken out to sea for burial. The ‘Operation Geronimo’, is ended in a mystery. The most wanted fugitive, even after his death, wearing a veil of ambiguity as happened in 9/11 attacks, when various stories unearthed, which created a controversy syndrome.
Reportedly, US intelligence officials discovered the whereabouts of Osama bin Laden by tracking one of his top couriers. Information was collected from Guantánamo Bay detainees, who gave US intelligence officers the courier's pseudonym and said that he was a protégé of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed.
In 2007, US officials discovered the courier's real name, Maulawi Abd al-Khaliq Jan, and, in 2009, that he lived in Abbottābad, Pakistan. OBL location was identified through one of his courier man. As Bin Laden was believed not have let any of Al-Qaeda foot soldier or top commander know his whereabouts. CIA interrogation at Guantanomo Bay revealed the identity of the courier man as Abu Ahmed Al-Kuwaiti. Later when Khalid Sheikh Mohammed was captured, he too confirmed details of al-Kuwaiti, but denied he had anything to do with al-Qaeda. Further lead-up to the courier man were found after the arrest of top Al-Qaeda operative Hiassan Ghul in Iraq. Hassan told CIA interrogators that he courier was close to Faraj al-Libi. Later the courier real name was identified as Sheikh Abu Ahmed, a Pakistani man born in Kuwait. However, no information about Ahmed was available. It was only through a telephone conversation that Ahmed had with another operative whom the CIA was monitoring that the CIA managed to track Ahmed and therefore in Aug 2010, Ahmed unknowingly led authorities to the compound in Abbottabad.
The credibility of the information which CIA furnished to the US ‘controlled’ media , raised many questions; How the helicopters reached Abbotabad, from Afghanistan,; Pakistan’s national Security System or Radar system was jammed by US ‘Technocrats’, Why one helicopter was shot down by American themselves ? Why Osama Bin Laden was residing in that Compound, where CIA and ISI conducted a mutual raid in the similar compound few years back to capture Abu Farjj, a top Al-Qaida aide? Why the dead body of Osama Bin Laden is not exposed to Media yet?? What makes USA authorities to bury the dead body in a sea?? And which sea?? And why?? While , when Saddam Hussain was captured , his video was immediately resurfaced, even his capital punishment was telecasted at all international TV Channels?? President Obama who watches the operation, live ,spoke to world, immediately after that :
“ Today, at my direction, the United States launched a targeted operation against that compound, in Abbottābad, Pakistan. A small team of Americans carried out the operation with extraordinary courage and capability. No Americans were harmed. They took care to avoid civilian casualties. After a firefight, they killed Osama bin Laden and took custody of his body.””
There is a visible twist in the speeches of Obama’s top aides and that of Obama himself. President Obama recognized the efforts of Pakistan (ISI), while delivering his nationwide speech on TV, he says, "Over the years, I've repeatedly made clear that we would take action within Pakistan if we knew where bin Laden was. That is what we've done. But it's important to note that our counterterrorism cooperation with Pakistan helped lead us to bin Laden and the compound where he was hiding. Indeed, bin Laden had declared war against Pakistan as well, and ordered attacks against the Pakistani people”.
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton at the U.S. State Department stated that "cooperation with Pakistan helped lead us to bin Laden and the compound in which he was hiding". The most damaging statement is that of CIA Chief Leon Panetta, who tells TIME “ U.S. officials feared that Pakistan could have undermined the operation by leaking word to its targets”. Long before Panetta ordered Vice Admiral William McRaven, head of the Joint Special Forces Command, to undertake the mission at 1:22 p.m. on Friday, the CIA had been gaming out how to structure the raid. Months prior, the U.S. had considered expanding the assault to include coordination with other countries, notably Pakistan. But the CIA ruled out participating with its nominal South Asian ally early on because “it was decided that any effort to work with the Pakistanis could jeopardize the mission. They might alert the targets,” Panetta says.
It is not the first time that Osama Bin Laden is claimed to be dead. The Hunt expedition for Osama is not the first time venture, it happened to be taken place, even before 9/11 , when the then President Clinton had signed a directive, authorizing the CIA (and specifically their elite Special Activities Division) to apprehend Bin Laden and bring him to the United States to stand trial after the 1998 United States embassy bombings in Africa; if taking Bin Laden alive was deemed impossible, then deadly force was authorized. On August 20, 1998, 66 cruise missiles launched by United States Navy ships in the Arabian Sea struck bin Laden's training camps near Khost in Afghanistan, narrowly missing him by a few hours. In 1999 the CIA, together with Pakistani Inter Service Intelligence, had prepared a team of approximately 60 Pakistani commandos to infiltrate Afghanistan to capture or kill Bin Laden, but the plan was aborted by the 1999 Pakistani coup d'état; in 2000, foreign operatives working on behalf of the CIA had fired a rocket-propelled grenade at a convoy of vehicles in which Bin Laden was traveling through the mountains of Afghanistan, hitting one of the vehicles but not the one in which bin Laden was riding.
According to US Media, the American government concluded that Osama Bin Laden was present during the Battle of Tora Bora, Afghanistan in late 2001, and according to civilian and military officials with first-hand knowledge, failure by the US to commit enough US ground troops to hunt him led to his escape and was the gravest failure by the US in the war against al Qaeda. Intelligence officials have assembled what they believe to be decisive evidence, from contemporary and subsequent interrogations and intercepted communications, that bin Laden began the battle of Tora Bora inside the cave complex along Afghanistan's mountainous eastern border.
The Washington Post reported that the CIA unit composed of their special operations paramilitary forces dedicated to capturing Osama was shut down in late 2005. US and Afghanistan forces raided the mountain caves in Tora Bora between August 14–16, 2007. The military was drawn to the area after receiving intelligence of a pre-Ramadan meeting held by al Qaeda members. After killing dozens of al Qaeda and Taliban members, they did not find either Osama bin Laden or Ayman al-Zawahiri.
Immediately after the 9/11 attacks, George W bush and US government officials named bin Laden and the Al-Qaeda organization as the prime suspects and offered a reward of $25 million for information leading to his capture or death. On July 13, 2007, this figure was doubled to $50 million. Reportedly, US expert used satellite photos and intelligence reports, the CIA surmised the inhabitants of the mansion to which the courier was traveling. In September, the CIA concluded that the compound was "custom-built to hide someone of significance" and that Bin Laden's residence there was very likely. Officials surmised that he was living there with his youngest wife, a Yemeni by origion , whose passport is also recovered by agencies .
The compound was built in 2005, the million-dollar three-story mansion was located "at the end of a narrow dirt road" 2.5 miles (4 km) northeast of the city center. Eight times larger than nearby houses, it was surrounded by 12-to-18-foot concrete walls topped with barbed wire. There were two security gates and the third-floor balcony had a seven-foot-high (2.1 m) privacy wall. There was no Internet or telephone service connected to the compound. Its residents burned their trash, unlike their neighbors, who simply set it out for collection. The mansion was known as Waziristan Haveli by the local residents, and owned by a transporter from Tangi, Charsada.
According to Media reports, ‘a Pakistani intelligence official said ; raw phone-tap data had been transferred to the United States without being analyzed by Pakistan. While the U.S. "was concentrating on this" information since September 2010, information regarding bin Laden and the compound's inhabitants had "slipped from" Pakistan's "radar" over the months. Bin Laden left "an invisible footprint" and he had not been contacting other militant networks. It was noted that much focus had been placed on a courier entering and leaving the compound. The transfer of intelligence to the U.S. was a regular occurrence according to the official, who also stated regarding the raid that "I think they came in undetected and went out the same day", and Pakistan did not believe that U.S. personnel were present in the area before the special operation occurred.
Pakistani high commissioner to the United Kingdom, Wajid Shamsul Hasan, maintained that, Pakistan had prior knowledge that an operation would happen. Pakistan was "in the know of certain things" and "what happened it happened with our consent. Americans got to know him—where he was first—and that's why they struck it and struck it precisely." Husain Haqqani, Pakistani ambassador to the U.S., had said that Pakistan would have pursued bin Laden had the intelligence of his location existed with them and Pakistan was "very glad that our American partners did. They had superior intelligence, superior technology, and we are grateful to them."
Another Pakistani official stated that Pakistan "assisted only in terms of authorization of the helicopter flights in our airspace" and the operation was conducted by the United States. He also said that “in any event, we did not want anything to do with such an operation in case something went wrong.”
There are numerous allegations made that; the government of Pakistan was involved in shielding and patronizing Bin Laden. Aspects of the incident that have fueled the allegations include the proximity of Osama Bin Laden's heavily fortified compound to the Pakistan Military Academy, that the United States did not notify the Pakistani authorities before the operation, and the alleged double standards of Pakistan regarding the perpetrators of the 2008 Mumbai attacks.
Pakistani-born British MP Khalid Mahmood stated that he was "flabbergasted and shocked" after he learned that Bin Laden was living in a city with thousands of Pakistani troops, reviving questions about alleged links between al-Qaeda and elements in Pakistan's security forces. U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham questioned, "How could [bin Laden] be in such a compound without being noticed?", raising suspicions that Pakistan was either uncommitted in the fight against Islamist militants or was actively sheltering them while pledging to fight them. A Pakistani intelligence official said that they had passed on raw phone tap data to U.S. that led to the operation but had failed to analyze this data themselves.
U.S. government files leaked by Wikileaks disclosed that American diplomats were told that Pakistani security services were tipping off bin Laden every time U.S. forces approached. Pakistan Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) also helped smuggle al-Qaeda militants into Afghanistan to fight NATO troops. According to the leaked files, in December 2009, the government of Tajikistan had told U.S. officials that many in Pakistan were aware of bin Laden's whereabouts.
U.S. Senator Joe Lieberman, chairman of the Senate Homeland Security Committee, said "This is going to be a time of real pressure on Pakistan to basically prove to us that they didn’t know that bin Laden was there" John O. Brennan, the chief counterterrorism advisor to Obama, stated that it was inconceivable that bin Laden did not have support from within Pakistan. He further stated "People have been referring to this as hiding in plain sight. We are looking right how he was able to hide out there for so long." Senator Dianne Feinstein stated that "it's hard for me to understand how the Pakistanis ... would not know what was going on inside the compound." and said that top Pakistan officials may be "walking both sides of the street."
Gulf News reported that the compound where bin Laden was killed had previously been used as a safe house by ISI, but was no longer being used for this purpose. The US claims of “ vehement and blatant” violation of Air Space has exposed the credibility of our national security and Defense mechanism against the enemy. What is the national agenda of USA, as CIA is pursuing ? To defame the top intelligence agency ISI, which collaborated against the “ War against the Terror”, . CIA is always skeptical about the role of ISI in war against Taaliban. They will definitely find a reason to further denigrate ISI and Pakistani Security Forces and get an international approval stamp for Drone attacks, now inside Pakistan, whenever and wherever they believe so. Military Establishment and security agencies cut a sorry figure when they have no answer to the blatant air violation and operation against the most valuable target. Earlier, Air Chief Marshal Suleman Qamar maintained that if Government of Pakistan can allow us the they can hit any Drone. Even top scientist Samar Mubarak Mand have the similar assertion. CIA , on the other hand claimed itself to deceive ISI or its counterparts, while DG ISI General Pasha , who played a pivotal role, in releasing CIA Spy Raymond Davis to win the “ minor perks’ and ‘goodwill gestures’, did face the severe criticism by Opposition leader Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan in the National Assembly.
The Military Establishment got a severe setback in the eyes of common citizens , the later felt insecurity with the air-raid announcement of US authorities. Pakistani Nation did not like continuation of collaboration of ISI with CIA from the very beginning of Afghan Jehad, as Kalashnikov Culture, Heroin and Terrorism came to Pakistan from Afghanistan, and spread like a Cancer in the society. It is now generally believed, that whole Nation is forced to face the humiliation due to ISI-CIA nexus. What is next? CIA will try to prove that ISI was the chief patronizer of Osama Bin Laden? Drone attacks will be multiplied? US Targeted Operations will be conducted, wherever and whenever US desires, as a preemptive measure? The more radical General David Petraeus is taking over CIA as its chief , one can expect the multiplication of ‘Do- More Policy’ with more Drone Attacks . Unfortunately , Pakistan Government is totally failed to come up with the expectations of the citizens. PM Gillani left for France without explaining what really happened in that fateful night ? Can we expect more suicidal attacks at vulnerable installations, security forces and public? Can we expect more intrusion of hostile agencies in Balochistan? Or CIA will find a way to withdraw the majority forces from Afghanistan, due to growing pressure of US citizens and keep tactical forces only? How USA will bring changes in political set-ups of Pakistan and Afghanistan, as to get the desired contracts of reserves of mineral and natural resources, USA needs installation of more weak governments ? The ghost of Osama Bin Laden will now give tip offs of his aides, where ever US authorities like to unearth?
It is the dire need of the time, to immediately convene a national security conference, to be attended by all stake-holders under all political and military leadership, to take a unanimous decision or consensus about, now a questionable, Defense and Security mechanism and to quit the policy of keeping silence or allowing Drone Attacks secretly. The Nation has to be taken into confidence , how robust our nuclear and missile systems are? Only Indian war planes can be hit or any plane which illegally or unlawfully enter into the Pak-Space is supposed to be shot down? It is believed that another fake picture or series of pictures of Osama Bin Laden will be surfaced shortly , but who will check the veracity of the pictures or ‘operation film’ of the ‘drowned Pharaoh’, once ruled on the hearts of Americans of Capitol Hill. Operation Geronimo’ was not only just show that Osama Bin laden was killed but it will have far-reaching affects on geo-political situation of the region . A National Security Policy, must be envisaged if government of Pakistan wants to come out of this fiasco. Secondly, the begging ‘ repute’ must be finished now… No country can be run on aids and grants only, until her economy and tax system is improved indigenously. The weak Pakistani government has installed another army of ministers in the Cabinet, which may further levy a new burden on the already shattering economy, in the given scenario?? Hostile agencies always play games of destabilization, in such given scenarios.
Tuesday, April 26, 2011
Legend Naeem Hashmi was a famous versatile actor, writer, poet, producer, and director in Pakistan. He was famous for his variety roles the late 1940s and 1950s, but he later took character roles in over 100 films. His naats, or praises said for the Islamic prophet Muhammad also earned him much fame. Many of his films, such as the banned Inqalab-e-Kashmir, touched upon social and national issues.
Naeem Hashmi was not only an actor but also a very much respected poet and writer. He was poet of the all time best and famous film Naat "Shah-e-Madina, Yasrib ke wali...". (Some sources claim that this Naat was written by Tanvir Naqvi). Naeem Hashmi was introduced in Indian film "Chandni Chowk" in 1946 which was produed in Calcutta.
Naeem Hashmi produced the first ever short feature film "Inqala-e-Kashmir" in 1948 in Pakistan, but this film was banned after only one show in Ritz cinema Lahore. A patriotic song from this film "Salam a Qaid-e-Azam, teri azmat ko salam, tera Parcham hai tabinda, tera pecham hai zinda..." was a National Anthem of Pakistan before 1954 which was also written by Naeem Hashmi and sung by Saghar Siddiqi. Reportedly, Naeem Hashmi produced the first ever Stage play "Shadi" in Odeon cinema Lahore in 1948. His acting was depiction of natural and real character of the story. He has immense talent to portray the characters as he became an embodiment to the real world. His exposition of characters, has multi-dimensional pursuit, as happened in Shakespearean drama. He is a wonderful critic of the age, a representative of the wretched class of the society , even if he performed a role of a villain. His nationalistic approach is hardly found in any actor of sub-continent , which personified his talent and passionate love for revivalism of Islamic glory. His Love of Holy Prophet (PBUH), is an example for whole nation, which showed unprecedented Submissive Love for the best Creation (PBUH) of the universe.
Naeem Hashmi had the privilege to work with giants of the biggest film industry in the world, the Indian film industry, well before Partition. He started his long journey in the film industry from Calcutta before creation of Pakistan. Chandani Chowk was his first movie which was produced by none other than the iconic Indian film producer BR Chopra and directed by Tahkur Himat Singh.
Hashmi s female lead artist was Erica, who was later introduced with the name of Rukhshi in Pakistan after Partition. She is still alive. His famous quotation “THERE IS ALWAYS POISON ON THE LIPS OF ART” , reminds the sacrifice of famous philosopher Socrates. Naeem Hashmi played role of Principal protagonist in at least seven PTV dramas, those included; drams of Nusrat Thaker, Munno Bhai and Yawar Hayat.
After creation of Pakistan, Naeem Hashmi made Inqalab-e-Kashmir in 1948, which was confiscated due to government s policies. It was the Inqalab-e-Kashmir for which Naeem Hashmi, Fida Shahjehanpuri and Sagar Siddique collectively wrote an anthem which was broadcasted as the national anthem till 1954. Naeem Hashmi appeared in 74 films, 37 Urdu and 37 Punjabi. He played the title role in Babul. Other famous films were Khatoon, Noor-e-Islam, Azma-e-Islam, Shama, Ayaz, Sher Jawan and Banarsi Thagg. He died on April 27, 1976.
THE 35th death anniversary of Naeem Hashmi, a versatile persnailty of Pakistani film industry and writer of most famous Naat Shah-e-Madina and co-writer of the first national anthem, will be observed on April 27. Khawer Naeem Hashmi, is son of legend Naeem Hashmi, who is a symbol of courage and struggle against dictatorship and a rising star of journalism, presently serving as Bureau Chief of GEO TV, Lahore.
Sunday, April 24, 2011
Journalists For International Peace appealed to Secretary General Ban Ki Moon , to utilize all efforts to recover four Pakistanis including Captain Wasi , from the custody of Somalian Pirates . Though the Inter non-governmental organisations have announced financial support for the release of captain Wasi and other three Pakistani, But so far efforts bore no fruit. The pathetic attitude of government of Pakistan , made the family members of the kidnapees , so desperate that a teen age daughter of captain Wasi, Laila, had announced to sell out her livers for the release of her father.
Earlier, an Indian based non-governmental organisation announced financial support of US$ 0.5 million. Somali pirates demanded US$ 1.1 million of the release of Captain Wasi. Brother of Captain Wasi, Askari Hasan has said that US$ 0.6 million are still remaining to complete the demand of Somali pirates. He also paid thanks for the Indian NGO over the announcement of the support. The pathetic Pakistani Federal Ministers and political tycoons came to various private TV Channels and pledged to recover the Pakistanis after paying ransom from government exchequer , disappeared from the scene. Even Prime Minister Yusuf Raza has failed to understand the gravity of the situation .
Reportedly, the final dead line is just 11 days away to set release Capt. Wasi Hassan with his four Pakistani members and innocent Laila (daughter of Captain Wasi Hassan) is begging for money to release her father from the Somali Pirates.
“After repeated request to government; now family of Captain Wasi has started fund raising campaign on their own. But it is shameful that government has done nothing in this issue and all the political parties are ignoring this issue.” A member of Capt Wasi’s family orchestrated. “We are Muslim; but we forget that Muhammad Bin Qasim travelled thousand miles on the call of his religious sister to save her.” He added .
The daughter of Capt Wasi, innocent Laila questioned Rehman Malik that what he would do if his own son would have been kidnapped; but she couldn't still receive the reply from Rehman baba. I'm sure the reply will never come from him. They don't have the moral courage to face such innocent questions. The pirates have reduced their demand to $2.0 million and $1.5 million have already been arranged by shipping company and international NGO; but still there's a $500,000 difference. I'm sure that Almighty Allah will not disappoint the innocent Laila and she will again see her father safe and sound.
Earlier, Sixteen Pakistanis and two Iranians have been freed from Somali pirates after the Danish Navy carried out an air-raid operation to rescue the Pakistani hostages who have been in the custody of Somali pirates since last year.
On April 2, the Danish Navy’s rescue team was attacked by open fire by the pirates after which the rescue team responded through fire and conquered the ship and its crew. The team boarded the vessel off Somalia's coast targeting an Iranian fishing boat that the pirates had used as a mothership. The rescue operation was backed by aircraft support.
The Danish Navy Spokesperson Kenneth Nielsen confirmed that 15 Somali pirates have been arrested from the ship out of which three received injuries in the operation. All of them are being held in custody of ESBERN SNARE, a Danish ship that is part of NATO’s counter-piracy force. The Danish Navy also recovered arms, weapons and other equipment from their possession.
The Captain of ESBERN SNARE has expressed great pleasure in being able to have the pakistani crew on his ship and participate in their joy. According to him, the freed hostages have been able to call their families from the Danish ship and ”are safely on their way back home”. Kenneth Nielsen has said that no decision has been taken about what to be done with those captured. The possibility of legal prosecutation is under review and the case has been handed over to the Attorney of Special International Crime. The freed hostages have on their own request been brought back to their own ships enabling them to sail back to their domestic areas.The wounded pirates are so far being treated by doctors, Nielsen added.
Four Pakistanis were onboard an Egyptian vessel that was captured by Somali pirates last year. Another ship from Malaysia carrying five Pakistanis was hijacked by the pirates on November 26, 2010 while two more Pakistanis were among hostages of a hijacked ship belonging to the UAE on March 26, 2010. The Companies that own these ships were negotiating with pirates to release their crew members since long but the pirates showed great stance and resistance in any compromise. In March 2011, the Somali pirates sent out the threat to kill four Pakistani hostages if $20 million was not paid to them in ransom by mid March.
In the past year, the Somali pirates have been responsible for numerous kidnapping cases of official crew members from companies around the world, including families traveling on sea. Their criminal activities have become of high concern among the international community and called out for concerted, global action against piracy on the high seas.
On 17 August 2009, NATO’s North Atlantic Council (NAC) approved the Alliance’s latest counter-piracy operation, Operation Ocean Shield. The operation is NATO’s contribution to the international efforts to combat piracy off the Horn of Africa and is focusing on at-sea counter-piracy operations. This operation builds on the experience gained during Operation Allied Protector and Operation Allied provider, NATO’s previous counter-piracy missions. Since 5 August 2010, Denmark has contributed with a support ship, ESBERN SNARE, including crew and a helicopter. Denmark previously contributed to Operation Ocean Shield with the support ship ABSALON from late January until the middle of March 2010.
Reportedly, Many pirates are 20–35 years old and come from the region of Puntland, in northeastern Somalia. The East African Seafarers' Association estimates that there are at least five pirate gangs and a total of 1,000 armed men. According to a BBC report, the pirates can be divided into three main categories:
Local Somali fishermen, considered the brains of the pirates' operations due to their skill and knowledge of the sea. Many think that foreign boats have no right to cruise next to the shore and destroy their boats.
Ex-militiamen, who previously fought for the local clan warlords, or ex-military from the former Barre government used as the muscle.
Technical experts, who operate equipment such as GPS devices.
According to Globalsecurity.org, there are four main groups operating off the Somali coast. The National Volunteer Coast Guard, commanded by Garaad Mohamed, is said to specialize in intercepting small boats and fishing vessels around Kismayo on the southern coast. The Marka group, under the command of Yusuf Mohammed Siad Inda'ade, is made up of several scattered and less organized groups operating around the town of Marka. The third significant pirate group is composed of traditional Somali fishermen operating around Puntland and referred to as the Puntland Group. The last set are the Somali Marines, reputed to be the most powerful and sophisticated of the pirate groups with a military structure, a fleet admiral, admiral, vice-admiral and a head of financial operations.
The conduct of a typical pirate attack has been analyzed and shows that while attacks can be expected at any time, most occur during the day, often in the early hours. They may involve two or more skiffs that can reach speeds of up to 25 knots. With the help of motherships that include captured fishing and merchant vessels the operating range of the skiffs has been increased far into the Indian Ocean. An attacked vessel is approached from quarter or stern, and RPGs and small arms are used to intimidate the operator to slow down and allow boarding. Light ladders are brought along to climb aboard. Pirates then will try and get control of the bridge to take operational control of the vessel.
There have been both positive and negative effects of the pirates' economic success. Local residents have complained that the presence of so many armed men makes them feel insecure, and that their free spending ways cause wild fluctuations in the local exchange rate. Others fault them for excessive consumption of alcoholic beverages and khat.
On the other hand, many other residents appreciate the rejuvenating effect that the pirates' on-shore spending and re-stocking has had on their impoverished towns, a presence which has often provided jobs and opportunity when there were none. Entire hamlets have in the process been transformed into veritable boomtowns, with local shop owners and other residents using their gains to purchase items such as generators -- "allowing full days of electricity, once an unimaginable luxury."
Local fishermen in the Malindi area of Kenya to the south have reported their largest catches in forty years, catching hundreds of kilos of fish and earning fifty times the average daily wage as a result. They attribute the recent abundance of marine stock to the pirates scaring away the foreign fishing trawlers, which it is claimed have for decades deprived local dhows of a livelihood. Marine biologists agree, saying that the indicators are that the local fishery is recovering because of the lack of commercial scale fishing.
The Somalian piracy appears to have a positive impact on the problem of overfishing in Somali waters by foreign vessels, as a comparison has been made with the situation in Tanzania further to the south, which suffers from the same problem, and also lacks the means to enforce the protection and regulation of its territorial waters. There, the catches have dropped to dramatic low levels, whereas in Somalia they have risen back to more acceptable levels since the beginning of the piracy.
The pirates get most of their weapons from Yemen, but a significant amount come from Mogadishu, Somalia's capital. Weapons dealers in the capital receive a deposit from a hawala dealer on behalf of the pirates and the weapons are then driven to Puntland where the pirates pay the balance.Various photographs of pirates in situ indicate that their weapons are predominantly AKMs, RPG-7s, AK47s, and semi-automatic pistols such as the TT-30. Additionally, given the particular origin of their weaponry, they are likely to have hand grenades such as the RGD-5 or F1. Al-Qaeda reportedly funded pirates with cash to purchase weapons. Osama bin-Laden supported these pirates in a video footage aired on al-Jazeera
The funding of piracy operations is now structured in a stock exchange, with investors buying and selling shares in upcoming attacks in a bourse in Harardhere. Pirates say ransom money is paid in large denomination US dollar bills. It is delivered to them in burlap sacks which are either dropped from helicopters or cased in waterproof suitcases loaded onto tiny skiffs. Ransom money has also been delivered to pirates via parachute, as happened in January 2009 when an orange container with $3 million cash inside it was dropped onto the deck of the supertanker MV Sirius Star to secure the release of ship and crew. To authenticate the banknotes, pirates use currency-counting machines, the same technology used at foreign exchange bureaus worldwide. According to one pirate, these machines are, in turn, purchased from business connections in Dubai, Djibouti, and other areas. Hostages seized by the pirates usually have to wait 45 days or more for the ships' owners to pay the ransom and secure their release.
Somali pirates allegedly get help from the Somali diaspora. Somali expatriates, including reputedly some among the 200,000 Somalis living in Canada, offer funds, equipment and information.
The purpose of piracy is to get ransom money for release of the crew, ship, and cargo. Pirates' income from ransom has been estimated to be about 39 million euro (about $58 million) in 2009 and $238 million in 2010. However, indirect costs of piracy are much higher and estimated to be between $7 to 12 billion as they also include insurance, naval support, legal proceedings, re-routing of slower ships, and individual protective steps taken by ship-owners. Further, piracy in Somalia leads to a decrease of revenue for Egypt as fewer ships use the Suez canal (estimated loss of about $642 million), impedes trade with a number of countries such as Kenya and Yemen, and is detrimental to tourism and fishing in the Seychelles.
A 2011 report published by Geopolicity Inc, investigated the causes and consequences of international piracy, with a particular focus on piracy emanating from Somalia. The report asserts that piracy is an emerging market in its own right, valued at between US$4.9-8.3 billion in 2010 alone, and it establishes, for the first time, an economic model for assessing the costs and benefits of international piracy. This model provides a comprehensive, independent framework of trend analysis, whilst also highlighting where the greatest rates of return on international counter pirate investment and policy are to be found across what Geopolicity term the ‘Pirate Value Chain.’ The report states that the number of pirates could double by 2016, increasing by 400 each year.
Journalists For International Peace appealed to Ban Kio Moon that UNO and NOTA forces must undertake concrete measures to clean the international sea from the Somalian Pirates and also unearth the hidden hand which patronises these pirates. “ USA and her allies are claiming to curb the terrorism from any country where it prevails, but the desperately fails to nab a group of pirates , which became a permanent threat to almost all the passenger or cargo ships”. Iftikhar Chaudri added in a statement here at JIP office. He also appealed to President Asif Ali Zadari and Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gillani to take a sympathetic view of the case and recover all detainee Pakistanis from the custody of the pirates.