January 01, 2005

TSUNAMI : PR stunt of Sonia Gandhi at Relief Camps

Just in case you are planning to donate to the Indian PM's Relief Fund, the following eye opener should give you a good glimpse into how your "donations" will put to work.

May Lord Rama help the people of poor Bharat.

PR

from another forum

The gentleman I met was a big businessman and a top
district level politician. But on that day he was a ground level
Samaritan trying to arrange for help. Apollo Hospitals was the first
outside of Nagai doctors' team to come for assistance. They had two
senior surgeons, pediatric, ortho, cardiac, gyneac specialists, a few
junior docs and many para medics. Most of the people who with whom I
was inducted, were local residents who had enormous economic impact
but not much of health impact. They had nothing to do with politics or
any organizations but just being themselves. They had all moved their
families to far away relative's houses and stayed back to help those
who lost everything in the waves. These I got to know later but then
there was no time for introductions then.

By the time, I was introduced into the team; the team was ready to
move to the next relief camp and was packing up. I was given a face
mask and gloves. There was one girl who was being carried into the
ambulance with a drip being administered. As soon as we started moving
towards the next relief camp, the traffic was blocked. SONIA GANDHI
WAS VISITING THE "IMPACTED" PEOPLE AND HENCE, RELIEF WORK WAS STOPPED.

Out of nowhere, came about 40 vehicles, 200+ supporters of congress
jumped out and formed a human wall. Sonia went into the hospital and
the police and supporters started controlling the crowd. PEOPLE WHO
LOST EVERYTHING WERE BEING THREATENED BY COPS WITH LATHIS TO NOT WALK
AROUND. Ladies were bought in from a nearby camp to cry in front of
Sonia!!! The spread their hair and started off, but were told to hold
off till Sonia comes out of the relief camp. About 15 mins later,
Sonia came out to meet the crowds and the "prepared" ladies started
wailing that they lost everything. Photo opportunities for leaders,
scoop for media and .......... Pack up time to move and all got into
the cars and went. Not one of the supporters stayed back, for they
have the important task of being the tail of their leader. The place
got its weary look back with only the cops on duty to guard the
refugees remaining.

US NOAA chief calls for global ocean sensing

NOAA chief calls for global ocean sensing

By Susan M. Menke
PostNewsweek Tech Media

In the wake of the deadly Indian Ocean tsunamis last week, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration chief Conrad Lautenbacher has renewed his call for a Global Ocean Observing System that could patch together many governments’ stovepiped sensors.

“He has been trying to build consensus for that since before he became administrator in 2001,” said spokesman Kent Laborde. “It would have multilevel platforms in space and on Earth, as well as decision support tools. Data isn’t useful unless it’s in a form that local governments can use for decisions.”

Laborde said the global observing system would combine new and existing systems, with “intergovernmental agreements to link and to add new layers where we see deficiencies.”

After seismometers detected the magnitude 9.0 earthquake that could generate tsunamis, NOAA tried to notify Indian Ocean nations of the possibility, but the agency has no tsunami-sensing buoys there, as it does in the Pacific Ocean.

NOAA’s Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory currently operates six sensor buoys along the Pacific coast that report changes in sea level. And NOAA’s Ocean Service has an extensive network of tide gauges used to identify a possible tsunami.

The Deep-ocean Assessment and Reporting of Tsunamis (DART) buoys consist of an anchored sea floor pressure recorder with a companion surface buoy. An acoustic link transmits data from the sea floor to the surface buoy. The data then travels to ground stations via one of NOAA’s Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites. The DART program in October won a Commerce Department gold medal.

NOAA’s National Weather Service currently supports tsunami warning centers for the West Coast, Alaska, the Pacific Rim and the UNESCO Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission. Its Tsunami Ready Program requires participating coastal communities to fund public awareness programs, recruit local directors, and install sirens and emergency radio and TV systems. Sirens must be tested monthly.

Laborde said it was difficult to estimate the cost of establishing tsunami warning systems in other nations. But he said there are “multiple parallel systems all over the Earth that don’t communicate now.”

The agency today posted a timeline of its notification efforts to other nations.

Tsunami : Nataraja Darshan saves lives of 4000 fishermen

Translation from Telugu – Eenadu, Tamilnadu Supplementary section dated 31st December, 2004: Page 1

Nataraja Darshan saves lives of 4000 fishermen

While thousads lost their lives in the Cuddalore coast to Tsunami, close to 4000 fishermen belonging to some 20 villages like Killai, Pichavaram, Kavarapattu neighboring the Chidambaram region escaped. They had left their villages to attend the annual ritual of "Arudra Darshan" at the world famous Nataraja Mandir in Chidambaram. As has been their practice for generations, they were involved in the pulling of the Mandir Car. When they returned to their villages post Tsunami, they found their entire villages ravaged beyond recognition. Sri Srinivasakumar a member of the fishermen community told us that they were saved because of the grace of Nataraja. He stated that inside the Chidambaram Mandir, they did not find any impact at all. He concluded " all of us owe our lives to Him".

December 31, 2004

UPA Government : An alliance neither united nor progressive


Author: M.V.Kamath

Publication: Free Press Journal

Date: December 30, 2004

Whatever else may be said of the BJPled NDA that ruled the country for
almost five years, it survived quite well with hardly any open show of
internal dissension, and whether one assigns credit to the NDA's
component units or to the excellent leadership of Prime Minister Atal Behari
Vajpayee, credit should be given where credit is due. The same, alas,
cannot be said of the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance which has
been showing within six months of coming to power that it is neither
united, nor progressive nor much of an alliance.

Dissension is rife within the alliance and it is seen every day.
Reports suggest that Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh had offered his
resignation at least four times in the last six months and they are quite
believable. Dr. Singh's Media Adviser, Dr. Sanjaya Baru has dismissed the
reports as "utter nonsense".

Nobody in his senses will take that seriously. The poor man is under
terrific pressure. The trouble is, Dr. Manmohan Singh is not a
politician. He is a harmless technician, if you please, who gave a good account
of himself as a Governor of the Reserve Bank of India and as a Finance
Minister and in sheer talent he is miles ahead of the likes of Foreign
Minister Natwar Singh, Defence Minister Pranab Mukherjee and the likes
of Arjun Singh and Shivraj Patil, all of whom, according to reports,
have been operating against him.

If the truth be told, these four colleagues of the Prime Minister are
not much of politicians either. They are certainly not what one would
describe as all-India leaders like a Vajpayee and an Advani. They have
hardly anything to their credit. Arjun Singh has been involved in a
lottery scandal and Shivraj Patil has been roundly criticised even by a
sympathetic pro-UPA press for his handling of violence in the North East.

Natwar Singh's gaffes are the talk-of-thetown. In sheer political
sophistication he nowhere comes up to the standards of a Jaswant Singh who
is in a class by himself. For Natwar Singh to hold the post of External
Affairs Minister is to insult Jawaharlal Nehru, the first one to handle
foreign affairs in independent India. Natwar Singh's gaffes are
unforgivable. In June, for instance, he unilaterally announced, to the shock
of his countrymen, that India would review its decision on sending
troops to Iraq when the universal consensus in the country is not to oblige
the United States.

But worse is his interview to a South Korean newspaper that virtually
apologised for the nuclear tests conducted under orders from his
predecessor government. That alone should have sufficed for the Prime Minister
to demand Natwar Singh's resignation. But the gentleman Prime Minister
merely contented himself with issuing a clarification of India's
position on the nuclear issue. So much for our Foreign Minister.

Now take the apparent tug-of-war between Defence Minister Pranab
Mukherjee and Home Minister Shivraj Patil. On 6 December Patil announced that
in the strife-torn state of Jammu and Kashmir, there has been
considerable reduction of cross-border terrorism which, according to him had
been reduced by 60 per cent. Patil made the point that the daily average
incidence of violence which was 11 in 2002 and nine in 2003 had come
down to six in 2004. Before one could breathe a sigh of relief the Home
Minister's statement was contradicted by his own colleague in the Defence
Ministry, Pranab Mukherjee.

If the latter is to be taken at his word, "infiltration attempts from
across the border are still going on in Jammu and Kashmir and even in
the last month there has been a sharp increase in the infiltration of the
militants". Mukherjee's statement was made within 24 hours of Patil's
announcement. Obviously there is no co-ordination between the two
Ministries which is strange, considering that there is, in the UPA
government, a special Ministry to co-ordinate the work of all Ministries.

What is clear is that both Mukherjee and Patil do not think they are
beholden to anybody, least of all to the Prime Minister. To see this show
of independence must be most galling to Manmohan Singh. Both the
Ministers need to be pulled up as should Natwar Singh as well. The ongoing
spat between Lalu Prasad Yadav and Ram Vilas Paswan must surely be
another cause for Manmohan Singh's worries.

In the past few weeks they have been behaving like street rowdies,
throwing mud at each other, in the process bringing down all respect for
not only the Prime Minister but the UPA alliance itself. What can a Prime
Minister do when two of his colleagues call each other as thieves?

Can a Prime Minister entertain two thieves in his cabinet and still
hope to command respect for his government? And the epithet, it is well to
remember, was not thrown at the Ministers by members of the Opposition.
It was an example of the pot calling the kettle black. One does not
have to listen to Paswan's charge against Lalu Prasad against whom there
are so many charges of corruption that one gives up all hopes of Bihar
ever seeing a decent corruption-free administration. It is no
consolation that the CBDT has cleared Laloo Prasad in one-the Income Tax case.

Laloo Prasad is also likely to be cleared in the Rs. 1000 crore fodder
case as well. As Arun Nehru correctly put it: "There should be no
surprises, as the CBI or the CBDT cannot be in conflict with the government
of the day". Besides how can the UPA last without Lalu Prasad's 26 MPs
lending their support? Even the UPA government has to put up with
crooks if it wants to last. It is bad enough for the Congress to have to put
up with the sixty odd Leftists who want to exercise power without
responsibility.

The pressure on Manmohan Singh must really be terrific. Here is a party
with a traitorous post-1942 record of betraying the Congress and the
country, literally holding the UPA government to ransom. Their threat
amounts to: "Do as we tell you, or else!'' which is another form of
blackmail.

Congress has no option but to meekly obey. Of course, the Leftists can
be shown their place easily, if Congress has the gumption to do so. It
can tell off the communists and challenge them to do their worst. It is
easy to threaten Congress but when the chips are down, the Leftists
know that if the Congress-led UPA government is overthrown, the door will
be open for the BJP to return to power.

What is distressing is that the Congress does not have the power or the
courage to take on the Communists. and it desperately wants to hold on
to power even if its allies insist on spitting on its face. It is to
such a state of impotence that the Congress has been reduced. What a
Jawaharlal Nehru or a Vallabhbhai Patel let alone a Mahatma Gandhi would
have felt at the current impotence of the party they once led is for
anyone to guess. That Congress has to so abjectly depend on, of all
parties, the Communists, is indicative of the depths to which it has fallen.

Worse still is Congress dependence on Lalu Prasad who hadn't the
courage to face Parliamentary ire, following the tragic railway accident in
Himachal Pradesh. Instead of attending theLok Sabha in session, Lalu
Prasad had rushed to Bihar to look after his political interests which are
now reportedly in great danger.

The opposition had to chastise him. But what can one say of a Lalu
Prasad who rules Bihar through his wife, whose `lower' bureaucracy and the
police are involved with criminal interests and, as Arun Nehru so aptly
says, the "senior officials play the survival game and look the other
way". There is that criminal Pappu Yadav, confined in jail but who,
thanks to obliging jail officials, puts in telephone calls from inside the
prison to several ministers, making a mockery of law?

In Bihar, as everyone knows there is no law, let alone order. Criminals
thrive and Sonia Gandhi's Congress looks the other way as if
criminality in Bihar is none of its business. Isis any wonder then, that rumours
are afloat in the capital that Manmohan Singh has been obliged four
times in six months to hand in his resignation to the Congress President?
If Manmohan Singh goes, who can replace him?

An Arjun Singh? He has already divided the country, and with him as a
Prime Minister, the country can honestly be expected to be torn as
under. Would Pranab Mukherjee be a good candidate? What stature does he have
in the country? None. So would that mean that Sonia Gandhi should take
over the reins of office? What would that do to her image as a `tyagi'?

So poor Manmohan Singh has to take the attacks on him from left, right
and centre and carry on, like Jeeves, as best as he can. But surely he
knows that even his best cannot hold the party or the alliance
together. And to top it all the CPI (M) politburo a pompous word for a poor
party executive committee has decided to support Samajwadi Party
candidates against the Congress in by-elections in Uttar Pradesh. The Samajwadi
Party preens itself on being a non-communal party when all the world
knows that it banks heavily on the Muslim and caste votes.

In Uttar Pradesh, as in India, seeking Muslim votes is not `communal'.
Seeking Hindu votes, is. Our political leaders have a great sense of
humour. The right and most sensible thing for the Congress to do is to
forget its pretenses and come to terms with the BJP. A Congress-BJP
government would be a truly national government and will remain
unchallengeable. But, as the saying goes, who will bell this cat?

Hardly seven months have passed since the UPA government came to power
and it is already showing signs of strain. It is easier to run a
government than tame the Natwar Singhs, Arjun Singhs and Harkishen Singh
Surjeets, not to speak of the Ram Vilas Paswans and the irrepressible Lalu
Prasad Yadav. That India still makes progress in many fields shows not
the competence of the UPA but the resilience of the people who have
suffered so many calamities in the past that they can well survive the
current crop of irresponsible politicians, with noticeable nonchalance.

In a bare seven months the Congress has shown itself incapable of
running the country. If this is considered `utter nonsense', let Sonia
Gandhi order fresh national elections. The Indian public illiterate,
poverty-stricken public is more politically sophisticated than many would give
it credit.

December 30, 2004

Riyadh Attack Was First Al Qaeda Attempt on Life of Saudi Royal

Riyadh Attack Was First Al Qaeda Attempt on Life of Saudi Royal – Prince Mohammed bin Nayef

DEBKAfile Exclusive Report

December 30, 2004, 5:18 PM (GMT+02:00)


Three al Qaeda tries and three misses


The night in Riyadh was torn Wednesday, December 29, by three huge explosions – not just the two officially confirmed. They were followed by long bursts of gunfire in northern and eastern Riyadh.

DEBKAfile’s exclusive counter-terror sources reveal that the three car bomb blasts were part of an al Qaeda attempt on the life of Prince Mohammed bin Nayef bin Abdelaziz, son of the Saudi interior minister, deputy minister and director of the ministry’s security unit which runs the war on terror. This was the first attempt by Osama bin Laden’s organization to assassinate a member of the Saudi royal family. It is a pivotal event in that it sharply escalates the terrorist offensive besetting the kingdom and raises the stakes on both sides.

By targeting interior minister Prince Nayef’s son, the terrorists declared open warfare on the minister who had been trying for the past year to maintain a dialogue with the Saudi cell through his connections in the clergy. According to our sources, Saudi cell leader Saud bin Hamoud al-Uteibi marked out the Nayef family after concluding that the interchanges the minister initiated were not on the level but an effort to plant his agents inside the terror cell and break it up from within.

Had the assassination plot against Prince Mohammed succeeded, a major upheaval would have ensued – destabilizing not only the oil kingdom but sending tremors around the Arab and Muslim Middle East as well. The balance of America’s war on Qaeda would have been affected and the ceiling lifted on oil prices. The sharp 4% rise in response to first news flash of the attempted murder was but an augury of the upsets to come.

According to DEBKAfile’s counter terror sources, the first of the three blasts occurred at 20:35 local time in a traffic tunnel in the town center through which Prince Mohammed’s convoy drove to his office. Al Qaeda operatives had spied on him and detonated the bomb car in the opposite lane as the prince’s car drove past. Because of the heavy Saudi news blackout, it cannot be established for sure if his five bodyguards were killed or injured.

Mohammed was on his way to a nocturnal conference with Saudi security and intelligence chiefs on the next stage of the crackdown on terrorists. Al Qaeda was in possession of the highly classified information on the time and place of the conference, the fact that Mohammed would be there to preside, and the route he would take to get there. This information also enabled the planners of the attack to prepare back-up plans in case Mohammed survived the tunnel blast. The second bomb car was therefore detonated, again by remote control, at the reinforced gates of the high-rise interior ministry building, while gunmen rained automatic fire on the entrance and parking lot. They hoped this second attempt would nail the prince as he stepped out of his car.

It was this blast that rocked the interior ministry building in the Murabaa district, shattered windows in the nearby post office, shops and post office and damaged cars.

But again their victim escaped.

Half an hour later and 8 km away, a third car blew up at the Saudi special forces recruiting center, the royal house’s primary fighting unit against al Qaeda. This time, two suicide bombers with bomb belts began hurling their explosives-laden car towards the gates, only to be repulsed by fierce fire from the guards. Although the car blew up short of the gates, it carried enough explosives to kill or injure a dozen Saudi officers inside the building.

The third failed attempt to murder Prince Mohammed also drew on the contents of the most secret contingency plans to send senior royals and their families to secure shelters if their lives were threatened. Mohammed’s protected hideout was to be the special forces recruiting center. Al Qaeda knew enough to waylay him there.

But again, their prey, suspecting his security plans had been blown, eluded his assassins.

Later, Saudi security forces pursued the terrorists through the city. They killed seven in gunfights and sustained an unspecified number of casualties themselves.

A Terrorism Tax : Urban Takedowns

URBAN TAKEDOWNS


John Robb (Global Guerellas)

A rapid increase in urbanization and the proliferation of megacities are salient trends of global economic development since WW2. These trends will be exploited in this war. Cities are both the center of gravity of modern urban economies and extremely vulnerable to global guerrilla systems sabotage -- the leveraged infrastructure that cities rely upon is the perfect target.

It is therefore important to understand what provides cities their cohesion and why they collapse. In a departure from 4th generation warfare (4GW) theory, this cohesion isn't provided by moral factors but rather economic. A good source of insight into the economic factors that hold cities together, is a post 9/11 report by James Harrigan and Philippe Martin of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York (PDF). http://www.ny.frb.org/research/epr/02v08n2/0211harr.pdf

Their analysis indicates the following:
Cities form when aggregation is economically advantageous to both firms and workers.
A city's size (its population of both firms and workers) is maintained through a market equilibrium, where the benefits of aggregation are balanced with the costs.
Ongoing insults to this equilibrium, in the form of a terrorist tax, can cause a city to decline (disaggregate). This decline is defined as a transition to a new stable market equilibrium at a smaller size.

A Terrorism Tax

A terrorism tax is an accumulation of excess costs inflicted on a city's stakeholders by acts of terrorism. These include direct costs inflicted on the city by terrorists (systems sabotage) and indirect costs due to the security/insurance/policy/etc. changes needed to protect against attacks. A terrorism tax above a certain level will force the city to transition to a lower market equilibrium (aka shrink). So, what is that level? Here's what they concluded:
Singular terrorist events (black swans), like 9/11, do not impact city viability. The costs of a singular event dissipate quickly. In contrast, frequent attacks (even small ones) on a specific city can create a terrorism tax of a level necessary to shift equilibiriums.

In the labor pooling model of city formation, a terrorism tax of 7% will cause a city to collapse to a lower equilibrium. Labor pooling equilibrium reflects the benefits of aggregating workers in a single location. Workers get higher wages and more choices. Firms get stable wages (no one firm can deplete the market) and more candidates.

In the core-periphery model of city formation, a terrorism tax of 6.3% will push a city to a lower equilibrium. The core-periphery model is based on transportation costs. Firms generate transportation savings by concentrating in a single location next to suppliers and customers. Customers and workers glean the benefit of lower transportation costs by locating near jobs and goods.

Russia's Spetsnaz and Islamic Terrorism

Russia's Spetsnaz and Islamic Terrorism


By Ryan Mauro

There is no doubt that the Soviet Union played a tremendous role in the
expansion and evolution of Islamic terrorism. Many of the people
responsible for the policy of promoting fundamentalist miliancy still
hold key positions in Russia. People can accept the fact that there are
"anti-Bush" cliques inside the CIA and State Department, and the fact
that there are "pro-Bin Laden" cliques in the Pakistani military ISI.
Yet, for some strange reason, they cannot accept the fact that there are
still "pro-Marxist" cliques inside Russia. I believe that the Russian
Mafia operates in unison with these "rogue" elements, almost as a
separate intelligence directorate.

To help our readers understand how this clique works, and what it means
today, I am posting a series of important quotes from the book,
"Spetsnaz" by the defector, Viktor Suvorov. I believe that readers will
have a better understanding of the role Russia's Spetsnaz (elite special
unit of the GRU) played in terrorism and how it continues to support
terrorism by operating through the mafia or in the security services
themselves.

Quotes From "Spetsnaz" by Viktor Suvorov

"...Soviet secret police, the KGB, carries out different functions (than
the Spetsnaz) and has other priorities. It has its own terrorist
apparatus, which includes an organization very similar to spetsnaz,
known as osnaz. The KGB uses osnaz for carrying out a range of tasks not
dissimilar to those performed by the GRU's spetsnaz. But the Soviet
leaders consider that it is best not to have any monopolies in the field
of secret warfare. Competition, they feel, gives far better results than
ration."

"...Osnaz apparently came into being practically at the same time as the
Communist dictatorship. In the very first moments of the existence of
the Soviet regime, we find references to detachments osobogo
nazhacheniya-special purpose detachments. Osnaz means military-terrorist
units, which came into being as shock troops of the Communist Party
whose job was to defend the party. Osnaz was later handed over to the
secret police, which changed its own name from time to time as easily as
a snake changes its skins: Cheka-Vcheka-OGPU-NKVD-NKGB-MGB-MVD-KGB. Once
a snake, however, always a snake."

"It is the fact that Spetsnaz belongs to the army, and Osnaz to the
secret police, that accounts for all the differences between them.
Spetsnaz operates mainly against external enemies; Osnaz does the same
but mainly in its own territory and against its own citizens. Even if
both Spetsnaz and Osnaz are faced with carrying out one and the same
operation, the Soviet leadership is not inclined to rely so much on
co-operation between the army and the secret police as on the strong
competitive instincts between them."

"...Thus if it is relatively easy to recruit a man to act as a
'sleeper', what about recruiting a foreigner to act as a real terrorist,
prepared to commit murder, use explosives and fire buildings? Surely
that is much more difficult? The answer is that, surprisingly, it is
not."

"A Spetsnaz officer out to recruit agents for direct terrorist action
has a wonderful base for his work in the West. There are a tremendous
number of people who are discontented and ready to protest against
absolutely anything. And while millions protest peacefully, some
individuals will resort to any means to make their protest. The spetsnaz
officer has only to find the malcontent who is ready to go to extremes."

"On another occasion a group of animal rights activists in the UK
injected bars of chocolate with poison. If spetsnaz were able to contact
that group, and there is every chance it might, it would be extremely
keen (without, of course, mentioning its name) to suggest to them a
number of even more effective ways of protesting. Activists, radicals,
peace campaigners, green party members: as far as the leaders of the GRU
are concerned, these are like ripe water-melons, green on the outside,
but red on the inside-and mouth-watering. So there is a good base for
recruiting."

"The spetsnaz network of agents has much in common with international
terrorism, a common center, for example-yet they are different things
and must not be confused. It would be foolhardy to claim that
international terrorism came into being on orders from Moscow. But to
claim that, without Moscow's support, international terrorism would
never have assumed the scale it has would not be rash. Terrorism has
been born in a variety of situations, in various circumstances and in
different kinds of soil. Local nationalism has always been a potent
source, and the Soviet Union supports it in any form, just as it offers
concrete support to extremist groups operating within nationalist
movements. Exceptions are made, of course, of the nationalist groups
within the Soviet Union and the countries under its influence."

"If groups of extremists emerge in areas where there is no sure Soviet
influence, you may be sure that the Soviet Union will very shortly be
their best friend. In the GRU alone there are two independent and very
powerful bodies dealing with questions relating to extremists and
terrorists."

"...The GRU's tactics toward terrorists are simple: never give them any
orders, never tell them what to do. They are destroying Western
civilization: they know how to do it, the argument goes, so let them get
on with it unfettered by petty supervision. Among them there are
idealists ready to die for their own ideas. So let them die for them.
The most important thing is to preserve their illusion that they are
completely free and independent."

"Although the vast majority of spetsnaz is made up of Slavonic
personnel, there are some exceptions...And spetsnaz contains Turks,
Kurds, Greeks, Koreans, Mongolians, Finns and people of other
nationalities."

"The Soviet Union condemns the civil war in Lebanon. But there is no
need for it to condemn the war. All it has to do is hold back the next
transportation of ammunition and war will cease."

"Apart from military and financial support, the Soviet Union also
provides the terrorists aid in the form of training. Training centers
have been set up in the Soviet Union for training terrorists from a
number of different countries."

"Every terrorist is studied carefully during his training, and among
them will be noted the potential leaders and the born rebels who will
not submit to any authority...Of equal importance are the students'
weaknesses and ambitions, and their relationships with one another. Some
time, many years ahead, one of them may become an important leader, but
not one approved by Moscow, so it is vital to know in advance who his
likely friends and enemies will be."

"The reward for the GRU is that a terrorist doing work for spetsnaz does
not, in the great majority of cases, suspect he is being used. He is
utterly convinced that he is acting independently, of his own will and
by his own choice. The GRU does not leave its signature or his
fingerprints around."

"Even in cases where it is not a question of individual terrorists but
of experienced leaders of terrorist organizations, the GRU takes
extraordinary steps to ensure that not only all outsiders but even the
terrorist leader himself should not realize the extent of his
subordination to spetsnaz and consequently to the GRU."

"The overture is a series of large and small operations the purpose of
which is, before actual military operations begin, to weaken the enemy's
morale, create an atmosphere of general suspicion, fear and uncertainty,
and divert the attention of the enemy's armies and police forces to a
huge number of different targets, each of which may be the object of the
next attack."

"The overture is carried by agents of the secret services of the Soviet
satellite countries and by mercenaries recruited by intermediaries. The
principal method employed at this stage is "gray terror", that is, a
kind of terror which is not conducted in the name of the Soviet Union.
The Soviet secret services do not at this stage leave their visiting
cards, or leave other people's cards. The terror is carried out in the
name of already existing extremist groups not connected in any way with
the Soviet Union, or in the name of the fictitious organizations. The
GRU reckons that in this period its operations should be regarded as
natural disasters, actions by forces beyond human control, mistakes by
people, or as terrorist acts by organizations not connected with the
Soviet Union."

"The terrorist acts carried out in the course of the 'overture' require
very few people, very few weapons and little equipment. In some cases
all that may be needed is one man who has a weapon nothing more than a
screwdriver, a box of marches or a glass ampoule. Some of the operations
can have catastrophic consequences. For example, an epidemic of an
infectious disease at seven of the most important naval bases in the
West could have the effect of halving the combined naval might of the
Soviet Union's enemies."

"There is a marked increase in the strength of the peace movement. In
many countries there are continual demand to make the country neutral
and not to support American foreign policy, which has been discredited.
At this point the 'gray terror' gathers scope and strength and in the
last days of peace reaches its peak."

Ryan Mauro has been a geopolitical analyst for Tactical Defense Concepts
(www.tdconcepts.com), a maritime-associated security company, since
2002. In 2003, Mr. Mauro joined the Northeast Intelligence Network
(www.homelandsecurityus.com), which specializes in tracking and
assessing terrorist threats. He has been published in WorldNetDaily.com,
Newsmax.com, StrategyPage.com, WorldTribune.com, HomelandSecurityUS.com,
JRNyquist.com and in the Turkistan Newsletter (Turkistan Bulteni). He is
a frequent writer for Milnet.com as well. He has appeared on radio shows
including The Al Rantel Show, WIBG Radio, WorldNetDaily Radioactive with
Joseph Farah, Jeff Nyquist Program, Kevin McCullough Show, Laurie Roth
Show, Tovia Singer Show, Stan Major Show, and Preparedness Now. His book
"Death to America: The Unreported Battle of Iraq" is scheduled to be
published in the coming months.

http://globalpolitician.com/articles.asp?ID=270&t=Russia%92s+Spetsnaz+an
d+Islamic+Terrorism
12/30/2004

ISI plotting to merge Northeast India with Bangladesh, indicates report

http://news.hinduworld.com/click_frameset.php?ref

The Sentinel, quoting security sources, has stated that a large number of representatives of various fundamentalist and radical groups attended a conclave held at the Mohammadpur Jamaitul Madrassa (seminary) in the Bangladeshi capital Dhaka on December 15, reportedly as part of a conspiracy at the behest of the Pakistani Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) to merge India's north-eastern States with 'greater Bangladesh.'

The strategy evolved at the meeting is to launch an infiltration drive in the Bengali Muslim-dominated areas of the region in order to foment secessionist forces and pave the way for a movement for the right of self-determination in the long run, the sources said.

Separately, a crude bomb was reportedly recovered from a marketplace
in the Kokrajhar town of Assam on December 29.

BALOCHISTAN CONTINUES TO HAUNT MUSHARRAF

By B Raman

The anti-Islamabad unrest in Balochistan continues unabated.

2. As already pointed out in our earlier articles on this subject, the unrest is, inter alia, due to anger over the suppression of the nationalist aspirations of the Balochs by the Government in Islamabad, the lack of economic development in the province despite the fact that its gas fields, which sustain the economy of Punjab, are a major source of revenue, the continuing failure of the Pakistan Government to give to the provincial administration and the tribes in whose territory gas was found an adequate payment of royalty for the gas supplied to the other provinces of Pakistan, the non-association of the provincial authorities with the decision-making on the construction of the Gwadar port on the Mekran coast with Chinese assistance, the award of almost all contracts relating to the project to non-Balochs, mainly Punjabis, the import of Punjabis and other non-Balochs, many of them ex-servicemen, into the province to work in the project and the plans of the military-dominated administration in Islamabad to construct three new cantonments in the province in order to increase the number of troops permanently stationed there.

3. The continuing unrest, which is mainly directed against the Army and the central Government authorities and the gas production and supply infrastructure, was reflected in another attack by the Baloch nationalist elements on para-military personnel deployed in the province on December 25, 2004, coinciding with the 128th birth anniversary of Mohammad Ali Jinnah, the founder of Pakistan.

4. Four men of the Frontier Corps (FC) were killed and as many injured in an ambush in the Buleda area of the Trubat district, about 650 kilometres west of Quetta, the provincial capital. According to the FC officials, two of their vehicles carrying 14 personnel were attacked by unidentified persons with automatic weapons. They also fired several rockets. The officials said that the attack was so fierce and sudden that the FC patrol could not retaliate and the attackers were able to escape after the ambush.

5. Shortly after the ambush, a person who identified himself as Azad Baloch of the Baloch Liberation Army (BLA) reportedly telephoned media offices in Quetta and claimed that the BLA had carried out the ambush in protest against the plans of the Pakistani Army to set up three more cantonments in the province. He warned that such attacks would continue if the Army went ahead with its plans. He also claimed that 17 members of the FC were killed in the ambush and not four as stated by an FC spokesman.

6.Earlier this month, 11 persons, including an army soldier, were killed when a powerful bomb exploded at a crowded market place in Quetta. While claiming responsibility for the incident, the BLA expressed regret for the death of the civilian passers-by in the explosion , which according to it, was directed against the Army. Six persons, including five military personnel ,were killed in Khuzdar in August while three Chinese engineers were killed by an explosion in Gwadar in May. On December 13, 2004, the police claimed to have foiled a major incident by defusing two rockets that were installed by the side of a road in Quetta. On December 18, 2004,a powerful bomb exploded in the Balochistan Civil Secretariat in the ministers’ block, but it did not cause any casualties.

7. While the explosion, which killed the three Chinese engineers working in the Gwadar project, was believed to have been caused by anti-Beijing Uighur separatists based in the South Waziristan area, the responsibility for most of the other incidents, which had taken place in Balochistan since the beginning of this year, has been claimed by the BLA.

8. While not much is known about the leadership and infrastructure of the BLA, since 2001, sections of the Pakistani media have been carrying some details of the various groups of resistance fighters behind the growing unrest in Balochistan. According to an account carried by the "Newsline", "hundreds of Marri Baloch tribesmen, armed to the teeth, have taken up position on the Kohlu mountains, one of Pakistan's most backward, but oil and gas rich areas, to challenge the Government's policies in Balochistan. The tribesmen, who call themselves "guerillas" waging a war for the rights of the Baloch population, are armed with Russian Kalashnikovs, heavy machine and anti-aircraft guns and RPGs (rocket-propelled grenades), picked up in Afghanistan during their 14 years in self-exile. Most of them are educated with military/guerilla training received in Afghanistan." (My comment: during the pre-1992 days of the then Afghan President Najibullah )

9. It further said: "The Marri guerillas are currently led by Nawabzada Balach Marri, the son of the ailing Nawab Khair Bakhsh Marri. Balach, an electronic engineer from Moscow, won the provincial assembly seat from Kohlu with a record vote of over 18,000 - the highest ever cast in the constituency - despite all efforts by the administration to support his rival candidate, Mir Mohabat Khan Marri, the then provincial caretaker Minister. After a sudden increase in the Marri tribes militant's actions in 2000, other militant groups also joined them to carry out joint actions across the province. Rocket attacks on F.C. posts, landmine and dynamite explosions against F.C. personnel were witnessed in the neighbouring Dera Bugti tribal agency. Similar attacks were also launched in Kalat, Dalbundeen, Khuzdar, Gwadar, and other areas by the militants in a show of strength.

10. "In a recent army search operation in the mountainous Kachh area against the militants, regular as well as paramilitary troops, despite using aircraft and heavy cannons, failed to nab or kill any of the militants. However, two soldiers reportedly lost their lives, while many others were injured. A couple of months back, the Government decided to take action against the militants and secure the mountains between Kohlu and Kahan that are still in the possession of the Marri militants. An army of Levy forces and Bijrani tribesmen loyal to the Government, backed by the Frontier Corps, battled with the militants for two days, in which one Bijrani tribesman and one levy personnel were killed, while no losses were inflicted on the militants. After gauging the capability of the militants and their political support from nationalist parties, the Government has stopped its operation for the time being.

11."Locals in Kohlu claim that there are over 30 to 40 militant camps where Baloch youth have joined the militants to train in guerilla warfare. However, Government agencies put the figure of the camps as little over 15. The first ever visit of a two-member journalist team from Quetta to some of these camps in the mountains revealed that each camp had 300 to 500 recruits. The camps were established in militarily strategic and protected areas, housed in abandoned buildings set up by the Pakistan army during the 1973 operation (against Baloch nationalists). The militants, equipped with modern communication gadgets, apart from physical training, spend their time discussing possible Government military actions, reading newspapers and listening to the BBC every night to keep up with public and political reactions and Government policies. They also visit areas under the influence of opponents and Government forces to spread their message of an armed struggle against Government policies.

12." Mir Balach Marri settled all enmities with the neighbouring Bugti tribe a couple of months back in accordance with the tribal customs and traditions. Now both tribes have formed a strong alliance against the Government. Some 300 well-trained Marri tribes rushed to the aid of Nawab Akbar Bugti to fight para-military forces a couple of years back when the Bugti fort in Dera Bugti was under seige in the wake of increased attacks on gas pipelines. The Government later withdrew their forces after an understanding was reached with the Bugti tribe.

13. "The Tali (Sibi)-Kahan road is in complete control of the militants who have established dozens of check posts and camps, while hundreds of men are perched on the mountain tops all the way from Kahan to Tali. Not a single vehicle belonging to anyone hostile to their cause is allowed on the road. The Kahan-Kohlu road used by Frontier Corps vehicles is a death trap of landmines. Despite regular mine-sweeping checks, incidents of mine explosions killing or maiming para-military personnel or members of opponent tribes are commonplace. In a recent action, the militants abducted two Frontier Corps personnel and one police constable and declared that they will not be released unless the Government stops its operations and gives up its plans of constructing cantonments in the area.

14. "The Marri tribesmen are also believed to be involved with other militant groups who are working underground in Balochistan. The Government believes that the militants support the Baloch Liberation Army, an organisation responsible for the many bomb blasts and rocket attacks that have rocked the province and killed scores of military personnel. However, leaders of militant tribesmen firmly deny any connection, but openly admit their sympathy for the BLA. With the exception of Dr. Abdul Hai Baloch of the National Party, all Baloch nationalist leaders and student organisations openly support the guerilla warfare against para-military forces by regularly issuing statements in the press. According to Government sources, the Marri militants are being financed by neighbouring Iran, some Gulf states and probably the United States who want to sabotage the Chinese involvement and influence in the building of the deep sea port in Gwadar." ( Citation ends)

15. A correspondent of "Ibrat", a Sindhi daily published from Hyderabad, Sindh, who claimed to have visited the training camps, reported as follows on August 1, 2004: "During a recent visit to the training camps by journalists , it was disclosed that more than 60 training camps are operating in the area where Baloch youth are getting armed training. The estimated number of such persons is in thousands whereas hundreds of youth are joining these camps daily.

16."Dosteen Baloch is the Commander of one of the training camps. He told the journalists: 'Resources of Balochistan have been misappropriated and the entity of Balochs has been badly damaged. The time to resolve the problems through democratic means is already over. Now we have been compelled to take up arms. I am a graduate and married. Now our children ask when they can join the movement.

17."Another Commander said he is a landlord who got an opportunity to exchange views with some young persons already present in the camps. Now I have decided to participate in the struggle in principle. He complained that Balochistan has been deprived of its national rights.

18."During the survey conducted by journalists, it was noted that Balochs were being trained with rocket launchers, RPG--7, mortars, anti-aircraft guns, Kalashnikovs, land mines etc. They were possessing modern wireless sets, walkie-talkies, and satellites sets. They had modern communication sets. For transport, they had motorcycles, pick-ups etc.

19."Well placed sources maintained that the Government has decided, for the moment, not to go ahead with its plan of a military operation in Balochistan, but instead buy some time by talking to local tribal leaders who they basically view with contempt.

20."It is generally believed that the present insurgency in Balochistan, which includes almost daily rocket attacks on the Quetta cantonment and other strategic installations besides gas pipelines, has been perpetrated by the still undefined Baloch Liberation Army.

21."The Baloch Liberation Army is an amorphous, underground organization which was born in the Balochistan university many years ago during the cold war era. Extremists, left-leaning students of the Baloch Students Organization (BSO) were its most important component. To establish the BLA as a countervailing force in a region perceived to be the weakest link in the US chain, that is, Pakistan, the former USSR funded BLA with money and arms and logistics. After the Soviets were removed from power in Russia, nothing was heard about the BLA.

22."However, after the collapse of the Taliban in Afghanistan but with their presence near the Pak-Afghan border areas, sources said the US thought it prudent to establish its own spy network to counter-check the information made available to them by the ISI. The anti-Taliban nationalist elements, whether they are Pakhtuns or Balochs , were thought to be the best available resource that could be used to keep track of Taliban activities.

23."In these circumstances, when Sardar Attaullah Khan Mengal returned from London to Pakistan after a long exile, it was not surprising for many suspicious people.

24."Sources in the Pakistan Army went on to say that soon after the Sardar returned, the youth were reorganized under the banner of the Baloch Liberation Army (BLA). Kohlu was the place where a recruitment and training camp was established.

25."Sources in the Pakistan Army maintained that about 200 people were armed and trained in Kohlu in which the Afghan and Indian Government officials came deep into Pakistan and played a major role. These same sources said that apart from the 200 people, the main propelling force are the tribal chiefs like Nawab Akbar Bugti, Sardar Attaullah Khan Mengal and Nawab Khair Bux Marri who are instigating their tribes to revolt against the Pakistan Army. It is their perceptions, whether real or imaginary, which have created grounds in the military minds for an operation in Balochistan.

26."Sources say that such is the mindset that has developed that the Army thinks it can wipe out the insurgents once and for all as the terrain in Balochistan is not tough like South Waziristan and tracking insurgents would not be a problem, but the army cannot afford to open up so many fronts at once.

27."The Govt has, for the present, abandoned its plans (for military operations) in the area and is pressurising the local tribal leaders to help in pacifying the situation." (citation ends)

28. While neither confirming nor denying the existence of such camps, Nawab Akbar Khan Bugti, the chief of the Jamhoori Watan Party and a former Governor of Balochistan, has stated that if such camps existed it was the result of state oppression, injustice and the prevailing sense of deprivation among the Baloch people.. He has blamed the military-dominated Islamabad Government for forcing the Balochs into a situation where they felt that they had no other way of protecting their dignity, honour and rights except through resort to arms. According to him, apart from the BLA, two other organisations called the Baloch Liberation Front (BLF) and the Baloch People's Liberation Army (BPLA) are spearheading the anti-Islamabad militancy in the province.

29. Though the Government and sections of the media say that the Government has not yet launched a military operation and has been trying to pacify the people through political means such as the constitution of a joint parliamentary committee on Balochistan by Shaukat Aziz, the Prime Minister, Baloch nationalists, including Nawab Bugti, say that a military operation with the use of the Air Force, helicopter gunships and tanks, similar to the operation launched by the late Zulfiquar Ali Bhutto in the 1970s, is already on since August last following an attack on some army personnel and an abortive attempt to kill the provincial Chief Minister, Jam Yousuf, who heads a coalition consisting of the anti-US religious fundamentalist parties and the Musharraf-created Pakistan Muslim League (Qaide Azam).

30. Musharraf and his military-intelligence establishment, who are calling the shots in Balochistan, have imposed a virtual ban on the dissemination of correct information about the ground situation and have not been sharing with the public and the international community details of the casualties suffered by the army in its operations in the province. Baloch Police sources claim that the Army and the para-military forces have already suffered over 100 fatal casualties, but they are not admitting them. These sources allege that in order to downplay the gravity of the anti-Army revolt in the province, the Army has been showing these casualties as suffered in the anti-Al Qaeda operations in South Waziristan and not in the undeclared operation against the Baloch nationalists in Balochistan. According to them, inflating the figures of casualties in South Waziristan, by including in them those suffered in Balochistan too, also serves the purpose of convincing the US of the claimed sincerity of the Army's drive against Al Qaeda, at a tremendous sacrifice to the Pakistan Army as claimed by Musharraf.

31. The Baloch nationalist movement is only one component of the deteriorating internal security situation in Balochistan. There are other factors too. Balochistan is Pakistan's largest province area-wise, but the most sparsely populated. Even more than 50 years after Pakistan's independence, large parts of the territory remain unopened up, unadministered and undeveloped. It is almost like North Myanmar, with very little administrative or military presence in large parts of the territory in the remote areas.

32. Taking advantage of this, the Pashtun survivors of the Taliban and the Arab survivors of Al Qaeda have moved into the remote areas of the province and set up their own clandestine sanctuaries and training infrastructure. Senior officials of the Hamid Karzai Government in Kabul, including Karzai himself, have been alleging for over a year that Mulla Mohammad Omar, the Amir of the Taliban, and his associates in the Taliban leadership are operating from Balochistan. Similarly, periodically, there are uncorroborated reports that Osama bin Laden and Ayman al-Zawahiri, his No. 2 in Al Qaeda, are now based in Balochistan and not in the Federally-Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), where there is a strong US intelligence presence.

33. Baloch Police sources say that the survivors of the 600-strong force consisting of the Uzbeck, Chechen and Uighur components of the International Islamic Front (IIF) of bin Laden, which was earlier operating from South Waziristan, have also moved over into the remote areas of Balochistan and that these areas have become important clandestine operational bases for the training of Al Qaeda and pro-Al Qaeda elements and infiltrating them into Iraq via Iran for operating against the US troops there. The Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU) has set up its own training camps. Uzbeck recruits are brought via Turkmenistan and Iran, trained in these camps and either sent back to Uzbekistan by the same route or infiltrated into Iraq via Iran. The Uighurs do not so far seem to have their own training camps. They are instead trained in the camps of the IMU and some of them have also gone to Iraq.

34. Instead of acting against these Taliban, Al Qaeda and pro-Al Qaeda elements using the Baloch territory, Musharraf has been concentrating his campaign against the Baloch nationalists, who are strongly opposed to the presence and activities of the Al Qaeda and pro-Al Qaeda elements from their territory.

35. The bad internal security situation in Balochistan poses a serious dilemma for Musharraf. After seizing power on October 12,1999, he had drawn up detailed plans for the diversification of the Pakistani economy in order to reduce the present dependence on the export of textiles, leather goods and sports articles and the Karachi port. His plans for the Gwadar port, the construction of the Mekran Coastal Highway connecting Karachi and Balochistan, and the plans for the exploitation of the rich mineral resources of the province are part of this economic diversification project. In his perception, Gwadar would not only become the exit point for the external trade of the Central Asian Republics, Afghanistan and the Xinjiang province of China, but would also reduce the dependence of the Pakistan Navy on Karachi, which is within easy reach of the Indian Navy.

36. The implementation of this project demands a large flow of foreign investment and the co-operation of the Balochs. His deep distrust of the Baloch people, which he shares with other Army officers, and his consequent dependence on imported non-Baloch labour, mainly Punjabi and Pashtun ex-servicemen, has made the Balochs oppose the project.

37. The bad internal security situation has kept the foreign investors, other than the Chinese, away. The Chinese have been actively associated with the construction of the Gwadar port and the development of the Sanidak copper-gold mines, a long lease of which has been given to them. The presence of a large number of Chinese engineers and other personnel in the province to work in these projects has attracted the Uighur terrorists into the province, who have targeted them.

38. The consequent security concerns of the Chinese have not slowed down their implementation of these projects, but have made them hesitant to undertake commitments for new projects as was seen during the recent visit of Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz to China.

39. The need to strengthen the physical security of the Chinese and the imported non-Baloch labour in the province has led to an increase in the deployment of Pakistani troops in the area and the launching of plans for more cantonments. These have become an additional root cause of the growing anger of the Baloch nationalists against the Army.

40. To deal with the situation, Musharraf has been trying to follow a carrot and stick policy. He has been claiming that his Government has been spending more money for the economic development of Balochistan than any of the preceding Governments and that the Balochs would be the ultimate beneficiaries of the on-going projects with Chinese assistance. He admits that the Balochs have legitimate grievances on the question of payment of royalty for the gas taken out of the province and has been promising since he took over in 1999 to have the issue re-examined without, however, any follow-up action so far. At the same time, he has been expressing his determination to crush the militancy.

41. He visited the province in the middle of December,2004, to review the security arrangements for the Chinese and the imported non-Baloch labour, to visit the site of the under-construction Mirani dam, and to inaugurate the Lyari-Gwadar section of the Mekran Coastal Highway. For his participation in the public engagements in the province, he chose to highlight his dual role as the Chief of the Army Staff (COAS) by wearing his uniform to give added weight to his warnings to the Baloch nationalists that they would be ruthlessly crushed if they did not call off their anti-Government activities. In the meanwhile, the attempts for finding a political solution through a joint parliamentary committee have received a set-back following the decision of the Balochistan National Party (BNP) led by Sardar Akhtar Mengal to boycott it.

Challenges to Baloch Resistance

By Dr. Ashok K Behuria


Charles Napiere called Balochistan the place where Allah had dumped “all the rubbish of this earth“. British military intelligence called the Baloch “thieves by tradition and descent“after they found it difficult to tame them.
With the discovery of oil and gas in north eastern Balochistan over the period since the 1960s, Napiere’s dictum does not quite hold any more. The spirit of Balochi resistance about which the British forces insinuated in their writings, however, continues till today. The strategic lure of Balochi terrain has invited steady incursion and invasion from outside-it was under British administration before 1947 it has been part of the Pakistani state ever since.

The Balochis resisted the might of Pakistan during the accession, which every Baloch believes was done through force and fraud, and also during the 1970s, when prime Minster Bhutto sent in General Tikka Khan, the butcher of East Pakistan and Balochistan, who infamously declared: “we need the territory, not the people of Balochistan.“ The rebel leaders were either allowed to flee or made to change their orientation during army rule under General Zia-ul-Haq, and consequently the movement was deemed to have kept silence waiting for another day.

But, enter the new millennium, and the clouds of a fresh insurgency have started building up. This has come out into open since the beginning of the year and even warranted army action since July since when encounters between the army and insurgents have resulted in quite a few casualties. Keeping in mind recent events in Balochistan — the killing of some off-duty army-men, an attack on the Balochi Chief Minister and subsequent arrest warrants against veteran Balochi leaders such as Khair Baksh Marri and Mr. Akhtar Mengal and their followers — suggests that Balochi unrest may again pose internal security problems for Pakistan. It is useful to analyse the phenomenon from a strategic perspective.

The current Balochi resistance drive has been building up for quite some time, especially since the federal authorities in Pakistan started developing Gwadar port with road and rail links to it as part of an ambitious project to provide a surface trade link with central Asia through Chaman, Kandahar and across Afghanistan into central Asia via the Silk Route. This was a fashionable idea during Nawaz Sharif’s time, the late 1990s. Chinese patronage of the idea gave it a further boost and it continued after General Musharraf’s takeover of the Pakistan government.
Resistance from the Balochi side to such efforts by the federal government efforts were initially limited to the nationalist fringe that came out with the traditional interpretation that even if it brought development to Balochistan, the development would ultimately favour the Punjabis. But the Balochi resistance was submerged in the Islamist fervour that surfaced in the wake of post-9/11 war on terror in the neighborhood.

Pakistani Interior Minister Faisal Salah Hayat held a press conference as Balochi soldiers’ burn confiscated drugs. Pakistan has stepped up its crackdown on Balochi rebels, including raids throughout the province

This was made apparent by way the nationalist parties suffered severe reverses in the elections of 2002, even if they did not quite concede the areas where the traditional nationalism held sway, in Khuzdar, Kohlu, Dera Bugti, and Awaran.

But the sense of Balochi disaffection grew in the aftermath of the attack on the Taliban in Afghanistan and the establishment of US bases in Pasni, Gwadar, Dalbandin and Jacobabad in Sindh. This was not so much because of the US military presence but because of the decision of the Musharraf administration to establish some army cantonments in Balochistan, under the pretext of contributing to the war on terror. This was part of a larger plan to consolidate the army’s position in the border provinces.

The army, as well as the MMA-led government in Balochistan, could not effectively counter the Balochi nationalist argument, which was put forward through the Pakistan Oppressed Nations’ Movement, that the building up of cantonments will help the Punjabis in strengthening their controls over the Balochis and their territory. The imperiousness with which the federal administration dealt with the legitimate demands of the Balochis, that they should be given preferential treatment in recruitment for so-called developmental activities, hardened their sentiments further. In a way, General Musharraf obliged Balochi nationalists with a cause they were desperately in need of, to resuscitate nationalist resistance.

While all this was happening it was interesting to see a younger generation of Balochi leadership taking on the mantle of the resistance movement. This new leadership is removed from the old in terms of its bases of influence, its outlook, its power of articulation and its ability to look at the Balochi problem in an unemotional way. Young leaders like Sanaullah Baloch (at present a Senator and associated with the Baloch Nationalist Party), and Hameed Baloch, Amaullah Baloch, who are associated with the Baloch Students Organisation (BSO, which has become BSO-United), which provided the sparks during the resistance of the 1970s, do not look towards the old traditional Sardari based system of loyalty and privilege for a guaranteed support base. Through their appeal and persuasion they have managed to assemble a group which is modern in its outlook and has the capacity to sustain the Balochi nationalist struggle for a longer period.

This is not to deny that the veterans of the resistance movement in the 1950s and 1970s, the “famous four”— Ghaus Bux Bizenzo, Khair Bux Marri, Mr. Akbar Bugti and Ataullah Mengal — have lost their appeal. The younger Balochi leadership, as was perceptible in the submission by Senator Sanaullah Baloch in Delhi, a few months ago, has enough respect for them and in fact jealously covers up the weakness of some of them like N.A. Bugti for hobnobbing with the federal administration in Islamabad.

It needs further mention here that the spark of the ongoing Balochi upsurge started from the areas still under the control of some of these veteran families. It built up around the terrain rich in gas resources (estimated total reserve of around 25.9 trillion cubic metres) and under the control of the Mengals, Marris and the Bugtis in the districts of northern Khuzdar, Kohlu and Dera bugti respectively. The tribe Marri has kept the flag of resistance alive in Kohlu, while Mr. Akbar Bugti’s successors have jealously guarded their influence in the Bugti region. Since October 2003, the Kohlu and Bugti areas have witnessed sporadic attacks on outposts of the Frontier Constabulary and the Levies. They have also reacted strongly to the idea of building up a cantonment in Kohlu, for which the federal government has asked the oil companies to contribute (Rs. 600 million over two years) since it is in their interest.

These growing attacks on the army in northern-central Balochistan (in Kohlu and Dera Bugti) perhaps encouraged the Balochi nationalists of the south around Kech (Turbat) and Gwadar and later Khuzdar to resist the idea of a stronger and larger army presence in Gwadar. In fact, since June the nationalists have even rejected the Mirani dam project close to Turbat and fired several rockets at the project site, damaging some parts of it.
The encounters between the army and the Balochi nationalists have become regular and more intense since early July 2004 when, in response to the rising tide of terrorist attacks in Karachi, Musharraf directed the Gwadar Port Implementation Authority (GPIA) to shift to Gwadar and instructed the army to provide them with tight security in view of the earlier attack on the Chinese engineers in April. With the introduction of regular army into the fight with the Balochi nationalists, the struggle has intensified and the attacks on the MMA Chief Minister and army men (who were only going on leave), the insurgency seems to be gathering momentum.

The problems the resistance movement may encounter in the coming weeks could, however, come from within the movement. For it will be really difficult to sustain the tenuous pan-Balochi unity, cutting across divisions on the lines of tribes, clans and even ethnicity (Baloch-Brahui). At another level, the Islamist enthusiasm of the majority Pushtuns of the northern Balochistan, which seems to have infected many Balochis in the Balochi-dominated corners in the western, central and southern Balochistan, is also diluting the nationalist position and making the army intrusion in the name of anti-terrorist operation, look more legitimate and creating more enemies than friends for the movement outside. Henry Kissinger said in 1962 that he would not recognize the Balochi problem even if it hit him in the face, and one believes the response of his successor in the US State Department would not be any different at present. It will thus require exemplary leadership, long-term strategy and resources to keep the movement alive.

In the Pakistani media, the insurgency in Balochistan is not given the attention it deserves. But still there is a suspicion in Pakistan, according to Pakistani sources, that the army is deliberately provoking the Balochis, fully aware of their sense of disaffection, to prepare the case for the ouster of the MMA government in the province. And with the introduction of sophisticated defence equipment for tackling the insurgency as well as assured American sympathy with its command, the army will never allow the insurgency to build up beyond a point. However, it would be naïve on the part of Pakistani administration to equate Wana with Balochistan, as Balach Khan Marri would argue, in one of his recent articles in Urdu. The present state of Balochi resistance is more explosive and cohesive, he would say.

It has been a constant refrain of many analysts close to the Pakistani establishment to try and drag India into the internal troubles in Pakistan and invent an Indian hand even behind the sectarian killings on the occasion of Muharram in Quetta. Such inventions have hardly helped to bring down the temperature in Balochistan. The authorities in Pakistan will have to be sensitive to the genuine demands placed on the federal government by the Balochis, rather than seeking to quell any show of resistance through force alone. History is witness to the fact that suppression is the fertilizer that nourishes such movements. If Balochistan burns today can Searikistan, Balwaristan and Pakhtunistan be far behind?

Dr. Ashok K Behuria is a New Delhi-based commentator on Pakistani society and politics

http://bb.1asphost.com/albaloch/article_read.asp?id=189

December 29, 2004

Who leads the Balochs?

Who leads the Balochs?

MALIK SIRAJ AKBAR

Balochistan National Party's totally unanticipated decision to
withdraw from the Senate's Subcommittee has come as a bombshell in
the political quarters. It is, political pundits believe, a major
setback for the ongoing peace process in Balochistan. This decision
was taken a day after the inauguration of Coastal Highway in Makran
by President Musharraf.

Makran Coastal Highway, a 529 kms long highway that was completed
with a cost of 10 billion rupees, will link Lyari to Gwadar. The
highway is divided in three sections: Lyari-Ormara (242 Km), Ormara-
Pasni (152 Km) and Pasni-Gwadar (135 Km).

During the inaugural ceremony, President Musharraf severely
castigated the elements that are perpetrating acts of violence in
the province. The President too maintained that those who were
destabilising the situation in Balochistan were not the true friends
of Balochistan.

These remarks of General Musharraf infuriated the Baloch
nationalists. The BNP (Mengal) leaders accused that following the
recent bomb blast in Quetta, several Baloch youths, majority of whom
are reported to be students of university, had been immured by the
law enforcing agencies.

They too, while disclosing the causes of their withdrawal,
complained that the government, on one hand, was making high claims
of improving the life standard of local people, on the other had, it
has not managed to comply with the demands of the nationalist
leaders yet.

The political situation in Balochistan has taken a dramatic turn
following the decision taken by the Balochistan National Party. This
decision has plunged the whole province's politics and the prospects
of the Subcommittee's success in a state of uncertainty. The
withdrawal of BNP seems to have long-lasting impact on the Senate's
Subcommittee's recommendations as it will arguably not be accepted
by the Baloch nationalists.

This step taken by BNP will greatly worsen the political situation
in that province and the government's efforts to dig out a peaceful
solution to the ongoing turmoil in Balochistan. The question arises
what the government contemplates to do now to gratify the
nationalists and continue the pace of development in Balochistan
simultaneously. Anyway, when one talks of finding out a peaceful
solution, the important question is to whom the government must
negotiate with.

Before the formation of the Senate's Subcommittee, the nationalists
of Balochistan continuously insisted that the government must come
forward and embark upon a negotiation process. The government
without any hesitation accepted the nationalists' demands. A process
of interaction with Baloch leaders was started and Senator Mushahid
with his teammates visited Balochistan and listened to the points of
view of all segments of life. That, no doubt, was a very positive
initiative taken by the government. But after the occurrence of
violent acts of terrorism in Balochistan, particularly in Quetta,
and the withdrawal of BNP from the Senate's committee, the question
arises what the nationalists exactly want and what approach they
want for the resolution of their problems and removal of their
reservations. Do they covet the settlement of their problems
peacefully or violently? It seems the Baloch leaders are not very
clear about it themselves.

As a matter of fact, there does not exist unanimity of views amongst
the Baloch nationalists. All of them do not see eye to eye with each
other. They are divided in various groups and there exists a lack
of 'Central Leadership' in the ranks of Balochs. Let's categorise
the Baloch nationalists for the sake of understanding the present
situation in Balochistan more clearly.

Balochistan National Party (Awami) is a prominent nationalist party
in Balochistan. It does not hesitate in terming itself a Baloch
nationalist party. But interestingly, at present this nationalist
outfit has adopted a very clear pro-government and pro-mega policy.
BNP (Awami), formerly a part of Sardar Mengal's BNP, is an ardent
backer of the ongoing development of Balochistan. Several leaders of
this nationalist party, including Syed Ihsan Shah and Asghar Rind,
are presently holding important portfolios in the cabinet of Jam-led
provincial government of Balochistan. BNP (Awami) terms rest of the
parties that oppose the construction of mega projects as anti-
development.

National Party, a newly formed party that culminated following the
merger of defunct Balochistan National Movement (BNM) and
Balochistan National Democratic Party (BNDP), is one of the key
parties that is opposing the ongoing mega projects in Balochistan.
Fascinatingly, this outfit often speaks against the 'Sardi System'
in Balochistan. It hardly shares ideological similarity with both
wings of BNP but ever since the emergence of the recent Balochistan
crisis, the two parties have gotten closer and share similar views
on Gwadar.

The third party in this political game is Balochistan Liberation
Army, and not much is known about its structural and organisational
features, as it is a hidden organisation. The government has been
insisting that this organisation does not exist in actual terms. But
soon after the recent bomb blast in Quetta, Balochistan Chief
Minister Jam Mohammad Yousaf, for the first time, said this
organisation does exist. BLA is unwilling to negotiate with the
government and is bent upon harming the government's interests via
violence.

Lack of clear vision and central leadership in the ranks of Baloch
leaders has made it more difficult for them to fight the battle for
their rights in an organised and effective manner. It is surely not
possible for the government to talk and satisfy each group as the
nationalists consist of elements with totally distinct viewpoints.
Unless they are united and have a central leadership, it will
neither be possible for them to voice their stance properly nor will
it be possible for the government to hold dialogue with any party.
Violence and negotiations cannot run at the same time.

E-mail: maliksiraj_1@hotmail.com
--------------------------

The United Nations always brings up the subject of human rights
whenever possible , and the United Nations is not the only one , the
European Union is also keen on raising human rights issues . Add to
this other well known groups such as Amnesty International . These
organisations which do alot of good for many oppressed people
throughout the world , don't seem to be doing much for the Baluch
Nation. E mails have been sent to these organisations , as well as
relevant documents , and yet we don't hear a word of critisism from
any one towards Pakistan or Iran. Why is this happening ? Why is no
one in the international community , apart from Sweden taking any
notice ? Why is our suffering being ignored by the world media , is
our suffering any less than the Palestinians and Kurds. The answer to
that is of course our suffering is no less than the Palestinians or
Kurds . It's a question of politcal convenience . It is not yet
politically convenient to bring up the Baluch issue. How many more of
will have to die , or be illegally imprisoned , or physically and
mentally tortured before it becomes politically convienient for any
one to do something positive. It seems that first the " Great and the
Good " must become enemies of our enemies , and then they must have a
vested interest in our natural resources . After all that , we then
will become valuable to them , and then of course they will use the
world media to show the world how our enemies who are now their
enemies , abused the human rights of the Baluch Nation. How much
longer do we wait ? What do we have to do to get noticed ? Do we
ignore the political process all together , and take up arms ?
However then of course , since our enemies are not their enemies
yet , there is always the strong chance that we will be labelled
terrorists. The Palestinians if nothing else at least have the
backing of 250 million fellow Arabs and the worldwide media . The
Kurds also benefit from a much larger population , and worldwide
media coverage of their horrendous plight under various regimes . Add
to this the fact that the " Great and the Good " are now enemies of
their enemies , they bow too have become valuable , not to mention
the uranium and oil that is beneath their soil.
However as for the Baluch Nation while deals can be done above our
heads , then no one will care to give us a second glance. Hundreds of
political activists and students have been arrested in Baluchistan
within the last few weeks. Many have been illegally detained ,
tortured pyhsically and mentally , and yet we hear nothing from the
outside world. Just one Baluch website alone has a list of over a
hundred illegally imprisoned Baluch in Pakistani jails , not to
mention the horrific torture and treatment of one person , who
refused to sign any statements given to him by the Pakistani
authorities , but let us not forget he is one of many , and not just
an isolated case. The arrest of over a hundred people in a Baluch
village in Iran a few months ago also by and large went unreported .
The fact that many of their homes had been bulldozed , and their
means of earning a living had been removed by the Iranian
authorities , didn't seem to matter to anyone in the outside world.
It would be really easy to be diplomatic and say thankyou ,
thankyou , thankyou to everone for helping us , but of course it
would be wrong. Shame on the United Nations , Shame on the European
Union , Shame on Amnesty International , where are you when we need
you.

Hindu temples stand tall and save neighbours from Tsunami

-- N S Rajaram

There seems to be a visible connection between the higher levels of
devastation in areas where stand-alone churches stick out as sore
thumbs with a cross on the coastline in comparison to the total
control of the fury of the sea in areas where Hindu Temples not only
protected the people living in the coastal areas but also offered
benevolent protection to the church structures.

Those familiar with the Chennai coastline will understand the
topography I refer in this note, better and will notice that the
devastation was more in Marina, Santhome, at Foreshore Estate, then
strangely find that there is no water gushing in at Besant Nagar, then
some devastation at Neelangarai, devastation at Kovalam and so on.

Let us examine each of these areas keeping in mind the vast
proselytizing activities along the coastline:

A stand-alone church at Santhome – in the name of the "mysterious"
sinner, St Thomas built after ravaging the Mylapore Kapali Temple,
devastation seen in and around the area, including the Foreshore
Estate and the neighboring fishermen colonies. Church is stand –alone.

A Velankanni church in Besant Nagar. SAVED literally by the presence
of Pyndi Amman, the local Ishta Devatha of the fisherfolk, the
Ashtalakshmi Temple – which the Paramacharya of Kanchi helped build
and consecrate. I learn from Radha Rajan ji of VIGIL Public Forum, who
was present during the visit of Paramacharya to this Temple site,
years ago, that He had made the following observation:

"The purpose of constructing this Ashtalakshmi Temple is to save the
people living in the land areas from the fury of the Sea waves. No
harm will befall anyone living in this region from the vagaries of the
Sea".

The famous Rathnagirishwarar Temple came up in the Besant Nagar
coastal region when Paramacharya pointed out at the spot and said
"There is a Swayambu Lingam inside". People found one and the Temple
came up, instantly.

In addition, there stands the Arupadai Veedu Temple on the Seashore in
Besant Nagar. The waters were under the control of the Muruga, the
presiding deity and did not dare enter His premises. This Temple came
up under the benevolence of Pujya Sri Jayendra Saraswathi Swamigal and
Sri Vijayendra Saraswathi Swamigal.

Not a single drop of water entered the premises of each one of these
Temples, despite their proximity to the sea.

People living in this region firmly have come to the conclusion that
it is the presence of these Temples on the Seashore that protected
even the Velankanni Church in Besant Nagar while her stand-alone
church at Velankanni, near Nagapattinam witnessed the fury of the Sea.

Stand-alone churches faced the wrath of the Sea-God in the rest of the
coastline. The presence of Hindu Temples not only saved hundreds of
people but also the neighboring church structures of every
denomination that have become sanctuary for brokers of
proselytization.

The Kannikaparameshwari Temple in Kovalam stood tall, within 500
metres from the Sea keeping the sea waters in check, with no drop of
water entering Her premises. The Temple saved hundreds of children who
were there, rendering soul-stirring Bhajans during the time when the
Sea showed its wrath. I am proud to be associated with the renovation
of this Temple along with our group of Sevaks, with the Blessings of
both the Sankaracharyas of Kanchi and Pujya Swami Dayananda
Saraswathi.

People have been heard confirming to the volunteers that it is the
presence of these Temples and the Blessings of the respective
presiding deities that protected thousands of people in Besant Nagar,
Adyar, Tiruvanmiyur, Kovalam etc in and around Chennai.


There is a question haunting some minds:

Whether the occurrence of the massive quake near Sumatra and
consequent devastating tsunamis, at 01:58:50 Vatican time on Dec 26,
while in Italy it was 23-00 Hrs GMT- 25th December, as the Christmas
celebrations were on in most parts of the world; is this some sort of
a warning to the Christians and the Proselytizing West.



B: Is Tsunami in Tamil Nadu a Divine Retribution for Seer's arrest ?

During the Seva work, volunteers have heard people throughout Tamil
Nadu saying with great conviction that such Tidal Waves were hitherto
unheard phenomenon in Tamil Nadu coasts and it is only the act of CM
Jayalalitha in arresting and humiliating the Sankaracharya of Kanchi
that has caused such a backlash of the Sea-Gods. Common people have
started connecting the two disasters.

People also have started seeing connection between simultaneous
devastation in Andhra Pradesh where from the Kanchi Sankaracharya was
arrested with the connivance of the local christian ruler and the
super christian ruler in Delhi.

It is also noticed that in many cases, churches have caved in and
taken many a converted sinner to sea, especially in the coasts of the
high conversion belts of Velankanni, Nagercoil and Nagapattinam.

While Swami Vivekananda stood tall as a Hindu rock in the sea, saving
hundreds, who took shelter behind Him.

People fear that worst is in store for them as long as the rulers of
today do not respect Hindus, Hindu Gods, Hindu religious leaders and
the sentiments of the common Hindus in a country predominantly
inhabited by the Hindus.

Many believe that unless the seer is released and his honor and
prestige completely restored, Tamil Nadu may face more retribution in
future.

December 28, 2004

DIVINE RETRIBUTION: DIWALI NIGHT TO CHRISTMAS MORNING

N.S Rajaram
(Multi Discliplinary Scholar)


A Hindu saint was arrested on the holy night of Deepavali by 'their' (meaning Christian) leader Sonia Gandhi, and the gods expressed their anger by wreaking havoc on the morning after Chrismas day, at a time were churches were full.

This is the creeping fear that is spreading through Christian communities in South India, many of which are concentrated along the coast.

This surprising report came to me not from any Hindu group or activist but an NRI physician and social worker originally from Goa who was in India for the Christmas holidays. Dr Vincent Prabhu, a Konkani Christian, visited me a couple of days after the catostrophe. He was stunned by the scale of the tragedy but particularly distressed that the tidal waves struck at a time when Christians were attending church in large numbers on the morning of the Sunday after Christmas. So the victims included a disproportionately large number of Christians.

Then he said something that I was totally unprepared for: he and many Christians believed that it was divine retribution for arresting the Kanchi Shankaracharya on the holy night of Diwali and his subsequent humiliating treatment.

Of course it makes no scientific sense-- the first was a human act, the latter the result of nature's fury unleasehed. But my friend, like so many Konkani Christians still held on to his ancestral beliefs like the karma theory.

But my 'scientific' explanation cut no ice with him. He also pointed out that it was not just the arrest instigated by their 'leader' Sonia Gandhi, but the subsequent behavior of Christian leaders who gloated over the Shankaracharya's arrest and took out processions supporting it. This made the gods (Dr Prabhu used the plural) angry.

He made another point: "Scientist like you may laugh at this, but go and try explaining it to the thousands of victims."

Whatever the reality, politicians and church officials -- practically one and the same -- have a major task on their hands. Perhaps this is why Sonia Gandhi asked Manmohan Singh to cancel his visit and decided to go herself-- and also hog the publicity limelight and pose as a saint
___________________________________

COMMENTARY BY ANOTHER PERSON WHO LIVES IN CHENNAI

Friends, the follwoing to think about:

1. The tsunami has been attributed to the quake in the ocean off
sumatra setting off tidal waves.

2. these tidal waves travelling at a speed as tho propelled by a
jetengine can reach chennai coast in a matter of 3 hrs.

3. there is no history of tidal waves in chennai altho we have known
storms, cyclones, hurricanes and flood.

4. now i live on the coast. in this locality there are three temples
of significance: one shiva temple which was built after the Kanchi
Paramacharya directed one of his bhaktas to 'look' for a swayambhu
sivalingam which Pujya Paramacharya said ought to be enshrined and a
temple built. (Kanchi mutt)

5. After i moved into this part of chennai in 1974, Kanchi
Paramacharya once again directed a temple to Mahavishu with ashta
lakshmi be built right bang on the shore. Pujya Paramacharya
concestrated the temple. later when he was talking to bhaktas he said
he had asked for the temple to be built on that spot to protect that
locality from the fury of the sea!

6. right at the extreme end of Besant nagar and on the coast again is
the new 'Arupadai veedu" Murugan temple consecrated by both Kanchi
Acharyas three years ago.

7. Now the worst devastation in chennai ocurred between the light
house and the harbour, on the marina where the san thome cathedral
stands. the waves have travelled over 2000 feet beyond the shore,
crossed the santhome main road and entered the office of the DGP!

8. But adjacent to this stretch are the shores of adyar and besant
nagar. no loss of life, no damage to property. just some water into
huts! i stood on the shore near the Ashtalakshmi temple and on other
parts of the shore at the height of the calamity trying to rescue wet
and drowning animals and i cld see how the waves were behaving. they
would rise menacingly slam against the sands and then retreat meekly.

9. it is amazing that tidal waves travelling from sumatra upto the
santhome marina coast causing death everywhere should bypass Besant
Nagar so completely. i have no secualr answers to this one. i have any
number of communal answers tho. and the first being this is divine
retribution for what J did to the Kanchi mutt. and this is
Paramacharya's way of giving J her comeuppance.

December 27, 2004

Balouchistan : GeoPolitical Puzzle of South Asia

Combines report from Strategytalk.org


This is prepared from Discussion forum

http://www.strategytalk.org/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=2348&postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=0

The U.S. has a complicated relationship with Pakistan. On one hand, it needed Pakistani cooperation for the campaign in Afghanistan. In addition, Pakistani cooperation appears to be politically and geographically necessary in order for U.S. oil companies to have ready access to the Central Asian oilfields.

On the other hand, many in the U.S. are upset that Pakistan clandestinely turned itself into a nuclear power, and are concerned that Pakistani nuclear technology could fall into the wrong hands. Israel and its supporters seem to be quite worried at the prospect of Pakistani nukes being deployed in Saudi Arabia. There is a general consensus that Osama bin Laden is hiding somewhere in Pakistan, and that the Pakistani religious schools or madrassas are the most fertile breeding ground for Islamic terrorists in the world today. The Pashtun tribal areas of Pakistan have been an effective refuge for Afghan Taliban freedom fighters.

This makes Pakistan a real conundrum for U.S. policymakers. The oil companies want that pipeline placed into operation, but the pro-Israel lobby wants the country to be disarmed. Several recent stories have led me to suspect that there are those in the U.S. who would like to see the problem solved in the same ingenious manner as the Gordian knot was untied: By cutting it into pieces.

The oil pipeline is currently planned to extend southward through Afghanistan, entering Pakistan near the city of Quetta, and extending southward to the Indian Ocean. This takes it through the Pakistani province of Balochistan (see map).

The Balochis have their own language and a distinct culture, and there has been an active independence movement for some time. For the past few weeks, I have been posting in a Balochistan discussion forum in order to learn more about the region. Balochistan also extends into Iran, and the Iranian Balochis are alienated from the central government somewhat because they are primarily Sunni Muslims while the rest of Iran is Shi'ite.

I've been wondering for the past few weeks about a scenario where the U.S. supports an independent Balochistan, which would become an ally and client state of the U.S. The oil pipeline becomes a reality, and the U.S. would be free to pressure the rest of Pakistan all it wants over the nuclear issue and the madrassas without it affecting that aspect of U.S. plans. The new country of Balochistan would actively assist the U.S. in the Pashtun border region, making life more difficult for Al-Qaeda. And the U.S. could use Balochi nationalist ferver to undermine Iran as well.

As I have pointed out in other threads, there is evidence that the U.S. has been trying to arrange a peace with "moderate elements" of the Taliban. If this succeeds, the Pashtun areas of Balochistan could be ceded to Afghanistan, providing a goodwill offering to the Taliban, who would be expected to support the pipeline as well. Alternatively, the Pashtun areas in Pakistan and Afghanistan could be combined in an independent Pashtunistan.

After toying with this idea, I was surprised to see this article in Asia times, which mentions the idea of an independent Pashtunistan and Balochistan. Of course, nothing is said about the oil pipeline or the broader strategy that is discussed above.

So now I am really wondering whether something like this is in the works. The obvious question or course is how the U.S. could pull something like this off without going to war with Pakistan.


USA government has a great interest in Balochistan for many reasons:

1- Pakistan is a burden on the USA. It totally depends on the US aids to survive. Its 85% of the budget goes to the military, which doesn’t pay back the debts.

2- Pakistan is too corrupt to be brought back to the civilized world. No government ever completed his 5 years in the office. And the only ex-ruler living in Pakistan is Mr. Jamali who was recently forced to resign by general Musharraf. The rest either hanged, bombed or in exile in corruption cases.

3- Pakistan is no use to the USA economically or strategically after the cold war and the government change in Afghanistan and USA friendship ties with India.

4- Pakistan is a fundamental country, and the pro Taliban forces are getting more and more stronger in Pakistan after losing ground in Afghanistan. To stop the fundamentalism in the region, Pakistan has to be vanished, as its known to everybody they are the ones who brought Taliban into the power in Afghanistan.

5- Pakistan has got nuke, and it’s very unsafe. As we all saw the Pakistani scientists selling nuke formulas to Iran, Libya and North Korea. And the same nuke can fall in the wrong hands in Pakistan and can cause a disaster.

6- On the other hand Balochistan is a very rich country with all the natural resources (natural gas, fuel, gold, silver, copper, marble and many more) and more than 305,000 square km which is almost 50% of the total landmass of Pakistan.

7- Balochistan has got almost 90% of the total coastal area.

8- Balochistan is living in the 15th century, so the American companies can work there for at least half a century to bring Balochistan close to the 21st century.

9- Balochistan`s population is only 6 million comparing to the Pakistani population which is 140 million, so its much easier for the USA to satisfy 6 million rather than 140 million.

10- Balochistan can be a great help to the USA to pressurize Iran as there is a Balochistan province occupied by Iran, which is the continuation of the Baloch land.

11- Balochistan`s location is just perfect in the middle of the old world between Europe and Asia. Connecting land lock Asian countries and China with the Arabian Sea and guarding the sea from the north.

12- Balochistan is under the focus from all over the world, especially from China, as Pakistan has got strong connection with China.

I think these are the main reason which makes USA think seriously about breaking up Pakistan.