Show us the evidence first, Musharraf didn’t say

He just did the needful.

Even as it turns out that the jihadi plot that the British authorities thwarted so spectacularly had the usual Pakistani connection, the Musharraf regime is alreading using the ‘assistance’ it provided to embellish its FATWAT credentials.

Pakistani officials said Thursday that they were informed about the plot by their British counterparts in December and that they actively assisted with the investigation. “We were in the loop since the blip appeared on the radar screen in London last year,” said a senior Pakistani intelligence official. [WP]

Arrests have been made and more assistance is promised, and all it took was a ‘blip on the radar screen in London’. No one in the Pakistani government did the reasonable thing and asked the British authorities for evidence first.

The Musharraf regime will add this too to the litany of its performance in the war against terrorism—arrested 600 al-Qaeda operatives, thousands of troops fighting al-Qaeda in Waziristan etc. It will find it much more difficult to answer just why, in spite of all this, jihadis from around the world come to Pakistan for training, funds and operational assistance. The truth is, capturing or killing Osama bin Laden and is immediate colleagues is far less important for international security than is the decommissioning of Pakistan’s jihadi establishment. The guerilla war in the godforsaken mountains of Waziristan has ended up as the primary theatre in the war against radical Islamic terrorism. That’s probably important, but not critical. What is critical is coercing Gen Musharraf and the Pakistani military establishment to really (as opposed to just cosmetically) get rid of all those Lashkars, Jaishs, Harkats, Hizbs and their associated ‘charitable’ organisations. For it is still playing both sides of the hares and hounds game.

8 thoughts on “Show us the evidence first, Musharraf didn’t say”

  1. I think what the ISI is working is, on the lines of the global outsourcing, to outsource all “physical” terror assets to Bangladesh with some self starting modules in each country (Britian above for example). The planning, indoctrination will continue in the “universities and charities of terror” in Pak (or online), but satellite pictures can never ever get the picture of a “terrorist camp”, because none will exist.

    India needs to understand this – the longer we delay taking action against Pakistan, the more we stand to lose out. Say, 10 years down the line, all will be quiet on the western front, perhaps zero infiltration and all the goodies will enter our country from Bangladesh or from within.

    Then, Pakistan will have really have no terror camps and we will be forced to, giftwrap and hand over Siachen, Kashmir and then some, given our inept and spineless leadership.

  2. Is the fact that Pakistan is a terrorist state only apparent to Indians? Is the rest of the world that gullible? Doesn’t seem likely. So why does it seems like Pak is fooling all of the people (less Indians of course) all of the time?
    Quite mind-boggling how the Pak establishment exonerates itself of blame because the perpetrators were “British-born”. And expects accolades for helping stave off a major catastrophe.

  3. Libertarian,

    Looks like nobody wants to own them.

    The two dozen people taken into custody are being questioned at Paddington Green high security police station in West London. The majority are understood to be young British Asian men of Pakistani descent, many holding dual nationality. [The Times]

  4. Perhaps this plot was “meant to be foiled”. So, in the eyes of the western world, FATWAT gets better credentials and they are in the “war”, “colloborating”, “Sharing evidence” and that means more weapons and money for a greater “WAT”

  5. It is not at all surprising that Mushy co-operated with the Brits. Like any politician, yes even a dictator, he did simple cost/benefit analysis. If he did not cooperate the Brits would fall on him like a ton of bricks. This cost would be too high for him. So the conclusion is to lend them a helping hand, earn accolades and have them (Brits, West etc) off his back for a few months.

    With India on the other hand, there is NO benefit in cooperating. Why??? Because India makes it very cheap for him to play his bloody game. After every terrorist attack, all he can expect from India is a “strongly worded” statement from some spokesman “asking” him to rein in the jihadis. So basically, no cost. The benefit of course is that he looks like a committed warrior for the Kashmir cause.

    Folks, the fault lies squarely with us (Indians). There is no payback for the games he plays with us. Till we make it “expensive” for him he will keep asking for proof.

  6. Umrao Jaan: cannot agree more. The price has got to go up. It used to be fairly high when Pak was meddling in Punjab – seems that helped convince them to stop. Then along came Gujral and his weak-kneed successors – and officially put the policy of retaliation to rest. High time we resurrected it.

  7. I have read this in B Raman’s interview as well – Pakistan backed-off in Punjab because of the covert operations ran by India. This does not make sense. While Pakistan was backing off in Punjab, it was promoting terrorists in Kashmir. Why would a covert Indian operation result in selective retreat from Pakistan?

    Gujaral and his doctrine are forever consigned to the hall of shame. Nonetheless, the covert operation argument sounds hollow to me.

  8. Manu,

    Success has many fathers, and perhaps rightly so. The end of terrorism in Punjab was due to several things (focussed anti-insurgency, political climate, weaking of the separatist appeal, Zia’s death, Pakistan’s new focus on Kashmir etc). Covert ops too, perhaps, for the game is played on several levels. Some were serendipitous, others natural, still others a result of wilful action by India.

    Covert ops are part of a range of tools; success results from a clever and proper usage of each of them.

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