Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby ramana » 14 Jul 2010 03:05

KV is a guiding light of US.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby RajeshA » 14 Jul 2010 03:36

ramana garu,

My apologies, but I haven't really understood what part of KV's plan you found ill-thought out.

I too am of the view, that Afghanistan could be stabilized far better if it were 'reorganized'. I am in favor of creating a UN-sanctioned Ethnic Federation in Afghanistan. Securing the non-Pushtun parts using NATO and others, and letting Taliban take over the Pushtun parts.

I expressed this view some time earlier.
RajeshA wrote:India's efforts should be to work with the international community to make Afghanistan an ethnic federation with pockets of mixed control, places like Kabul and Herat. If India can get a stable arrangement in Afghanistan, then the Taliban war effort would be directed rather southwards into FATA, Pakhtunkhwa Khyber and Northern Baluchistan through TTP, etc., bringing them in conflict with TSPA and Pakjabis.


As long as NATO does not force the Taliban to physically take administrative control of the Pushtun areas in Southern Afghanistan, NATO would also not be able to coerce them to 'behave'.

Now I know, the outlines of what KV proposed, and what I am suggesting is not the same, but both suggestions envision a 'reorganized' Afghanistan and a retreat of NATO forces from Pushtun areas.

My view is, KV may not be well-versed in all aspects of Afghan history, but there is some logic in his proposals. I hardly think, that there will be many others in the US Administration or Pentagon who would be having an in-depth knowledge of Afghanistan, so KV would hardly be worse placed than them to talk about Afghanistan. I know, that my knowledge of Afghanistan is limited. I certainly cannot distinguish between Ghilzais and Popalzais.

I will be very much interested to know, what you think are the fallacies of KV's plan. Why would it not work?

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby Prem » 14 Jul 2010 04:08

Pakistan: America's Achilles' Heel in the Afghan War
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/ehsan-aza ... 42673.html
Many Western political analysts interpret Pakistan's secrete behind this double-barrelled policy as part of Islamabad's compulsive contest with Indian influence in Afghanistan. There is a historical reason that always is left out from the attention of the political observers. This also explains Pakistan's topsy-turvy priorities in Afghanistan. Despite its denial, Pakistan is well aware that it has a disputed border with Afghanistan, which has never been recognised by the Pashtuns who are straddled on both sides of the Durand Line, which was drawn by the foreign minister of the British Indian Empire in 1893. The Durand line represents a cut-throat business, which is like a volcano that could erupt at anytime once the straitjacket of Islamic militancy was taken from the Pashtuns. To counter nationalism and secularism within the Pashtun community on both sides of the dividing line, Pakistani military and spy agency have promoted during the past thirty years a violent kind of religious militancy. This straitjacket policy created a contagious ideology that now justifies and regenerates terrorism and suicide bombing against non-Muslims. The top brass within the Pakistani military and the ISI sees the Islamic militancy as a necessary evil, the greatest strategic asset, and way above anything else that in their view guarantees the existing of the country. Given Pakistan's deadly hidden and deadly game, the Obama administration surge policy which is drawn out largely by Pentagon's generals will face a strategic failure. This is a policy which ignores the root cause of the insurgency in Afghanistan.
Last edited by Prem on 14 Jul 2010 06:09, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby Sanjay M » 14 Jul 2010 05:44

Once again, I'm dismayed to hear all these pro-Pak voices trying to argue against the breakup of Pak. Certainly it would be good for India if Pak broke up, and partitioning Afghanistan is the first way to do this. The Durand Line is an artificial creation of British imperial war. Let it completely disappear.

India can only benefit from this, while China can only lose from this, as they'll no longer have the Pak card to play against us. With Pak out of the picture, we can then turn more of our focus towards the border with Tibet, which is where most of our water comes from.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby vijayk » 14 Jul 2010 07:20

Sanjay M wrote:Once again, I'm dismayed to hear all these pro-Pak voices trying to argue against the breakup of Pak. Certainly it would be good for India if Pak broke up, and partitioning Afghanistan is the first way to do this. The Durand Line is an artificial creation of British imperial war. Let it completely disappear.

India can only benefit from this, while China can only lose from this, as they'll no longer have the Pak card to play against us. With Pak out of the picture, we can then turn more of our focus towards the border with Tibet, which is where most of our water comes from.


Why dismayed? Pro-Pak voices want Pak to be hinder our progress and keep India on the edge and losing side always.

If Afghanistan is broken up into North Afghanistan and South becomes Pasthunistan with NWFP of Pukestan. Then Baloochistan and Sindh go separate ways. Did I ever think of this seriously? No. But it appeals a lot to me and also stabilizes the entire region. We still have to deal with Pakjab.

I never wished this to happen but the way the terrorist nation went on a "Destroy India" campaign, they deserve it. Will this ever happen? I doubt it.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby RamaY » 14 Jul 2010 08:04

RajeshA garu,

Your idea of "Reorganization of Afghanistan on ethnic lines" may be a reasonable short-term idea. Perhaps recognition of united Pashtunistan might bring some sense into the key actors of this game.

But KV is not saying that. In his article he is trying to sell US's defeat as a long-term victory.

I think we all agree on the NA (North Afghanistan) creation.

That leaves South Afghanistan. KV agrees that in the short term it would be a win to TSPA/ISI/Haqqanis. Then he wants to create a dark cloud of predators on this region. The hollowness of his strategy comes out when one checks the facts.

USA has provided ~$15B financial aid in the same period. He doesn't recommend stopping of this aid-flow in the near future. This is nothing but feeding one's enemy with food, weapons, training, and defense intelligence.

Why is USA doing it? Unless USA is doing this consciously, and it for sure knows what TSPA/ISI intentions were/are all along.

My CT is this -
- KV's article and KS's follow-up are nothing but an effort to pull a woolen-curtain over Indian eyes. Since giving complete control of Afghanistan to Pakistan might expose their perfidy, these guys are phasing it. The first phase is Haqqani in southern-Afghanistan.

- Afghanistan is the necessary step to justify Iraqi invasion. Imagine the world's reaction if Unkil invaded Iraq only, leaving Taliban in control of Afghanistan.

- Taliban is never truly hurt by USA/NATO in the past eight years. It is kept in barracks. The preference to have direct american control over Afghanistan. When it didn't work, the next alternative is being deployed.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby ramana » 14 Jul 2010 09:56

RamaY, Good ideas. Only request don't put KS garu in same sentence as Blackwill. He is truly Bhisma personified. Thinks and breathes India's security all the time.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby Sanjay M » 14 Jul 2010 18:11

If Blackwill says the Earth is round, then it doesn't make it not so.

The fact is that the Pashtun issue is the underlying cause behind the Kashmir dispute. Note that Jinnah send Pashtun tribals to attack Kashmir in 1948 - he was trying to divert them away from their own national issue. Solving the Pashtun issue will automatically resolve the Kashmir issue.

So what if there's still a Pakjab? A landlocked Pakjab would be much less of a threat to us than a full Pak. We can deal with that situation when we come to it.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby RamaY » 14 Jul 2010 18:43

ramana wrote:RamaY, Good ideas. Only request don't put KS garu in same sentence as Blackwill. He is truly Bhisma personified. Thinks and breathes India's security all the time.


My apologies Ramanaji. I never doubted his intentions. In my immaturity, sometimes I wish our Bhishmapitamah trashes all these KV-types with clarity of thought, purpose, and strategy :oops:

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby RajeshA » 14 Jul 2010 19:06

RamaY ji,

(please, please, please stop calling me a garu, mere bhai. I am not worthy of that honorific by a long shot)

Blackwill is not proposing a comprehensive solution to Afghanistan, but rather
  • a stop-gap tactical retreat, and
  • a change of strategy from holding land, and thereby becoming a target; to one of letting your enemies hold land, so that they are better targets.

It is to be expected that Blackwill will present his case from the US Viewpoint. It is also to be expected that he will have American interests first and foremost in his mind. I think, it is also common knowledge, amongst those who care, that Americans are losing in Afghanistan. Blackwill is not trying to dispute that.

So I think, it is not important WHY Americans do what they propose to do, but rather WHETHER what they do is compatible with Indian interests.

Indian Interests in Afghanistan are:
  • 1) No complete Taliban takeover of Afghanistan, and thereby of TSP
  • 2) Northern Afghanistan continues to develop, economically and security-wise, because mostly it is the non-Pushtun people of Afghanistan, who are more sympathetic to India, and would have pro-Indian policies. At least they are less susceptible to Pakistani influence. I believe Pushtun are also sympathetic to India, but they would not be allowed by the Taliban to have pro-Indian policies. Non-Pushtun Regions of Afghanistan remain under Indian influence, and provide India with a platform for further interaction with Central Asia, as well as stop Pakistan from cutting India out of Central Asia.
  • 3) Autonomous Pushtun region in Afghanistan which spreads out into Pakistan, doing away with the Durand Line, leading to unraveling of Pakistan itself. This itself can only come about when the Pushtun, in this case, the Taliban get their land back, and are not dependent on Pakistan for safe haven.

Now what he is proposing, does not collide with any of the above. He explicitly mentions strengthening Northern Afghanistan.

The point is that it is either securing Northern Afghanistan against a Taliban attack, where Americans and Indians can continue to have presence and exert influence, or an American pull-back from the whole of Afghanistan leaving the Northern Alliance either dependent on insufficient support from Russia, Iran and India and barely surviving; or totally decimated by the Taliban attacks.

Southern Afghanistan is a lost cause. NATO is losing lives there, and soon there will be no domestic support for NATO to stay in Afghanistan leaving Afghanistan at the mercy of the Taliban and TSP.

Blackwill is proposing losing half of Afghanistan rather than the whole of it. That is good for India.

Secondly if Southern Afghanistan is given over to the Taliban, there will be no more NATO supply trucks coming from the South, through Pakistan. NATO would have to look for other supply routes, leading to a decrease in American dependence on Pakistan.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby ramana » 14 Jul 2010 21:06

RajeshA, While all you say is true, the handover of Southern Afghanistan to current Taliban will only prop up TSP interests as it allows their faction(Ghilzai) to takeover Pashtun leadership. This is unstable for it will lead to intra-Pashtun turmoil due to historical tribal divisions. Historic Afghanistan, as opposed to Kingdom of Kabul, is based on Durrani/Popalzai leadership of Pashtuns and this is acceptable to all Afghans: Pashtuns or not. So leaving Southern Afghanistan to Taliban will not be an Indian interest.
TSP has two threats to it. On the Eastern front it has India. However India is a status quo state and will not attack TSp unless grossly provoked. Hence its not an extentialist threat.

However on the Western fronthe big extentialist threat is the erasure of Durand Line. Now the land east of Durand Line has become part of TSP as NWFP. If you read the works of Olaf caroe, the India they wanted is Punjab and NWFP as a unit for their Great Game. Abdr Rehamn gave the British land east of Durand Line till 1993. Since then Durand Line is not legal. Even the Taliban govt in Afghanistan refused to recognize the Durand Line. The TSP strategy is to have their Islamised Pashtuns come to power on both sides of the Durand Line to keep it defacto intact. It is their way of providing self determination to the Pashtuns via Islamism. As such its not in India's interest.

And the last para in Blackwill's paper about India wanting the US to stay in Afghanistan to fight the Taliban is a hogwash. If that is untrue what else is untrue?

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby RajeshA » 14 Jul 2010 21:59

ramana garu,

As I see it, the Americans would like to hand over Southern Afghanistan to any Pushtun who can ensure, that they would not be further attacking Americans in Afghanistan and 2. who would not give any sanctuary to Al Qaeda.

In fact, NATO are there so much under pressure, they would be willing to give custody of Southern Afghanistan to even those, who would be willing to promise them that performa, without needing to uphold that promise.

The only Pushtuns, who have the strength to promise them that are the Haqqani Group and other Taliban groups fighting Americans.

Haqqanis belong to the Zadran Tribe, not the Ghilzais. Mullah Mohammed Omar is certain from the Ghilzai Tribe (Subtribe Hotak).

I have no idea, from which tribes most of the Afghan Taliban come from and from which tribes come the leadership (2nd tier, 3rd tier, ....)

The question is not, whether the Taliban come to power in Southern Afghanistan, but rather Taliban of which tribes come to power there, and whether they are strongly aligned with ISI or not.

If it is against India's interests that the Ghilzais come to power, what stops us from selectively supporting those tribes which are not close to Rawalpindi? Iran has already good connections with the Taliban.

I don't think that the Pakistan-based Quetta Shura would allow Americans to transfer power to any other group but them. So let the Americans do it. Let them have their taste of power.

After the power transfer,we can always subvert the ISI-backed Taliban by channeling funds (and arms) either through the Iranians or through Northern Afghanistan to all those Pashtun tribes who are not close to ISI or Pakistan and feel left out of the power sharing. It may be a little Pushtun Civil War, but Pakistan may not have the resources to finance Southern Afghanistan's economy and the upkeep of their Taliban (Keeping Drugs out of the discussion here).

There is no need to worry that the arrangement between the Pushtuns of Southern Afghanistan (Taliban) and the Pakistanis would endure for too long.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby Sanjay M » 15 Jul 2010 03:13

Pak/ISI lifting Ghilzai/Popalzai Pashtuns to the fore over Durranis causes no problems to India - it only causes problems to Durranis. Northern rejection of Popalzai/Ghilzai leadership is par for the course, since Northerners even reject Pakhtun Milat under Durranis.

All this means is that "Pakistani Taliban" take primacy over "Afghan Taliban" - as if it really matters. :roll:

With all Pashtuns under one banner, then it's highly doubtful that Pak/ISI would be able to maintain control - even from the Ghilzai/Popalzai end. When they are all together, then the Pashtuns are too powerful for Pakjabis to control. If Pak/ISI tries to assassinate leaders who don't toe their line, then it would be an automatic trigger for war between Pashtuns and Pakjabis. So either way, Pak is stuck on a trip to dissolution.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby abhishek_sharma » 15 Jul 2010 09:04

Special Briefing On Upcoming Kabul Conference

http://www.state.gov/s/special_rep_afghanistan_pakistan/2010/144537.htm

QUESTION: Lalit Jha. I have two questions. One, what is Kabul Conference all about? This – is it a pledging conference of what – some donations, money, have been given to Afghanistan? And secondly, this week in Islamabad, foreign ministers of India and Pakistan are meeting there after longtime revival of Indo-Pakistan peace dialogue. How helpful is it for you to achieve your goals in Afghanistan and Pakistan?

AMBASSADOR HOLBROOKE: On the second part of your question, anything that reduces tensions and increases confidence and understanding between Pakistan and India is something we would encourage and support. But we are not directly involved in those talks. I did have a very good discussion this morning with the Indian Ambassador to the United States who came and at my invitation so that I could brief her on the things we’re talking about here.

In regard to the first part of your question, our – this is not a pledging conference. It’s not a pledging conference. It is a follow-on to the January 28th Conference held in London and it was called at the invitation of President Karzai. I am told it’s the largest gathering of foreign leaders in Afghanistan since the 1970s. It will be an Afghan-led conference, and in it, the Afghan Government has told us that they will present their renewed commitments on security, governance, development, and they will put heavy emphasis on their programs on reintegration. This is a – I can’t give you the exact number of foreign ministers who are coming because I really don’t know it, but we know that the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon will be there, the NATO Secretary General Rasmussen will be there, and many other foreign ministers.


QUESTION: Mr. Ambassador, thank you. Let me ask you, one, what will this Kabul conference will make a difference? And second, as far as change in the command at the highest level from General McChrystal to General Petraeus will make any difference? And finally, as you said that you have briefed the Indian Ambassador here. What role you think India will play in this Kabul Conference?

AMBASSADOR HOLBROOKE: First of all, the Kabul Conference will be a very important international demonstration of support for the Government of Afghanistan and they will outline their programs.

Second – let me take your third question and go back to your second. Secondly, in regard to the Indians, you have to address the ambassador here and her government as to who will represent India and how that will be done. But on your larger question, India has a very real role in the region for historic and strategic reasons, and they can play an important role in resolving these issues, going down the – looking forward into the middle distance.

In regard to the change of command at ISAF, I think a lot’s been said on this already. I don’t need to add much. I was in Kabul with General McChrystal when the article appeared. He called me to apologize personally. I – of course, I wasn’t personally upset by what was said. Worse things have been said about me. (Laughter.)

QUESTION: Remind us what was said about you? (Laughter.)

AMBASSADOR HOLBROOKE: Don’t you have to be accredited to be here? (Laughter.)

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby ramana » 15 Jul 2010 20:44

Nightwatch 7/14/2010

Afghanistan: The National Security Council agreed in principle on a proposal to establish local defense forces in some parts of the country -- a measure NATO has long advocated, The Associated Press reported 14 July. Afghan President Hamid Karzai's office said the local forces would operate separately from the Afghan National Police under the authority of the Interior Ministry. The Interior Ministry will provide more details of the proposal at the next National Security Council meeting.

A plan for local security forces in Afghanistan is a "stop-gap measure" because there are not enough police forces to provide security, a Pentagon spokesman said today. He also said the program would create "local community policing units," not militias.

Comment: One of the significant problems with such schemes in Iraq was that the Sunni militias were loyal to and dependent on the US Army, not to the government in Baghdad. The militia program was poorly planned in the sense that it did not anticipate the problems of integration with the national armed forces; problems of pay for those not assimilated and enduring questions of loyalty by Sunni militiamen to a Shiite-led government. Those problems did not loom large until the Americans drew down and they are not solved yet.

Karzai and his advisors seem to have a good understanding of the flaws in the Iraq program plus they know that issues of loyalty in Afghanistan are exponentially more complex than in Iraq.

They also have first hand experience in witnessing what happened to the Northern Alliance tribal militias that helped overthrow the Taliban in 2001. Many were disarmed, supposedly. Most fighters were found unfit for integration in a modern military force - most could not read or write. They were sent home, but had hidden their weapons.

For the Northerners -- the Tajiks, Uzbeks and Hazaras -- who stood against the Pashtun Taliban for years, the idea that the Americans would organize, train and arm Pashtun village militias risks returning the Northerners to subservience to the Pashtuns… again. They will not accept that.

Karzai is wise to be skeptical about a program that is not necessarily based on loyalty to the government in Kabul over loyalty to the Americans; cannot guarantee that the militias/policing units will not join the Taliban; operates outside the government's control or financing and could threaten the local agents of the government after the Americans leave. This program easily could reinforce the longstanding rule of insurgency that the government usually supports both sides of the fight.


So again a good idea is being subverted by US advisers. Is there a plan for permanent destabilization of Af-Pak?


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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby ramana » 20 Jul 2010 01:18

X-post...
Muppalla wrote:I think we have to move beyond the discussion of whether Pillai ji did "as a representative of hawks to teach a lesson to doves" or the whole thing was beautifully orchestrated by GOI. No news paper/article will ever write that explicitly for another decade or until MMS retires. The end result has no difference. There is a good news if in case it is really hawks Vs doves and that is the check and balances of India are very well stress tested.

The BRF reasoning that "why this stupid talks with TSP" still stands. Is it Uncle's pressure or is it the way we deal with Uncle's pressure. The argument that India gave legitamacy to TSP government still holds. Though the GOP is not a power center and it is just a guboing-end of ISI+TSPA, India agreed to talk with GOP. As we already talked to these untouchables several times starting from SeS, even arguing against talks is futile. I guess we should move on to what next on the game board of three players (Uncle, India and TSP).

I firmly beleive that TSP and Uncle were very happy buddies when the terror was just India specific. For uncle, the entire terror machine is not global and for TSP it keeps the nation united as Kashmir is a motivator for all the bearded ones to be united. The problem started when the machinery moved global and TSP is seen as a terror machine and not "moral support to Kashmir". The broader reasoning for the talks-pressure from Uncle is India has wherewittal to take terrorist attacks as life is very cheap and has a lot of population where death does not matter much. So it wants to put back the genie into bottle so that (1)terrorism again becomes basically a South Asia thingy, (2)TSP lives on as a country (3) Kashmir is back as most dangerous point on the planet. If that is ensured, it can leave Afghanistan to dogs and exit from there. A rollback to good olden days is what is being ordered.

There are certain things/agreements that have happened post Kargil and US directly asking India to make some compromises on Kashmir like those during Clinton admin is not yet possible. It wants to box India and TSP to talk and keep talking so that the inevitable discussion about Kashmir comes on to the table so that Kashmir can be referenced again going forward. For India it is the terror originating from TSP that is important and it wants to talk just that before any other gentlemen topics can be discussed. Who blinks first? Kashmir or Terror?

Several meetings starting from SeS took place and the ice is not broken yet and so what is next?

(1) Since the percieved goals are not reached, US keeps TSP engaged in AF-Pak. As a pressure release, another attack in India from TSP may be ordered and the rollback game gets delayed again as India will have more pre-conditions to talks. So far we are only talking Mumbai, Headley, Hafeez. We will have more of such parameters in talks.

(2) US may think enough is enough and comes out open and asks India to make some compromises on Kashmir. This will jeopordize their commercial interests viz. nuclear reactors, FA-18s etc.etc.

I do not think US can afford (2) and to make Kashmir as primary agenda in talks unless US prevails upon TSP to yield to India on terror and convince TSP to handover Haffez types, ISI types and Dawoods etc. Here is where the tension and jack-assism of TSP comes into picture. They just want to avoid a situation where US asks TSP to yield to India. As long as jackasses as there in TSP the possibility of Kashmir becoming central agenda is remote.


I also see that two moves are going on simultaneously:
- Southern Afghanistan to Taliban which is defact controlled by TSP. So makes Western borders of TSP secure from erasure of Durand line.
- The other not being understood is the borderless kashmir which again is a plus for TSP for dejure they have no say in Kashmir but with uncle's help they have defacto say. Who knows what the demographics will do in a few decades?

So thus both sides of TSP are being stabilised by US to ensure state survival.

And as long as India keeps the MRCA/reactors tender open then US will keep Cashmere off the table. Once the orders are finalized and if they don't partake of the feed they will bring back Kashmir.
So in reality Kashmir has become Cashmere.

However its not in Indian interests to allow this defacto stabilization underway.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby ramana » 20 Jul 2010 01:35

From Nightwatch. As it affects Af-pak and India posting here:

India-Pakistan: The Foreign Ministers' talks in Islamabad yesterday have deepened suspicion and resentment, despite public statements that the Indians were pleased. Indian External Affairs Minister Krishna told the press, "I'm going back (to India) with the assurance from the highest level that information shared during Indian Home Minister P. Chidambaram's visit here and the leads that have emerged from Headley's interrogation by the FBI and Indian investigators would be investigated. If these could help unravel the conspiracy and go after the culprits it could be the biggest confidence-building measure."

Pakistani Foreign Minister Qureshi thinks Krishna snubbed him and sidestepped Pakistan's concerns. In the joint press conference, the men described the talks as constructive -- which means they achieved nothing --and agreed to meet again.

Subsequently, Qureshi insulted Krishna in public in saying today that the Indians are not ready for dialogue; are not "mentally prepared to engage in dialogue." Krishna fired back that his "mandate was very clear," implying the Pakistani expectations were not realistic and missed the point.

Comment: Since 26 November 2008, India single mindedly has pursued one issue with Pakistan: justice for the perpetrators of the Mumbai attacks on that date. Every Indian initiative or response has put progress on terrorism based in and supported by Pakistan as the top issue for discussion, the condition for talks on all other issues.

Pakistan has indulged a fantasy in thinking the Indians would get over Mumbai after several years and move beyond it to issues such as water rights to the Indus. They made a strategic blunder in this assessment.

The Indians take away confirmation that Pakistan remains unserious about suppressing anti-Indian terrorist groups; about overhauling its intelligence apparatus whose support for the anti-Indian Lashkar-e-Taiba has never stopped; and about abandoning terrorism as an extension of state policy. Pakistan continues to be a state supporter of anti-Indian terrorism. That made yesterday's meeting a dialogue of the deaf.

Mumbai update. According to the Indians, :mrgreen: David Headley, a U.S. citizen who helped plan the 2008 Mumbai attacks, said Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) gave Lashkar-e-Taiba 2.5 million rupees ($53,000) to buy a boat to carry the Mumbai attackers from Karachi, The Times of India reported 16 July. The terrorists then hijacked an Indian fishing boat at the Pakistani maritime boundary to reach Mumbai.

Headley has identified two ISI officers who handled the attackers through a voice sample, and Indian investigators have information indicating that ISI chief Lieutenant General Ahmed Shuja Pasha met one of the handlers, Sajjid Mir, who is currently held in a Pakistani jail. All of the information has been shared with Pakistan, an Indian source said. Pakistani Foreign Minister Qureshi declined to address this information raised by the Indians.

Comment: The Indians are in a quandary. They know -- because Pakistani analysts have found -- that Pakistani military governments, especially that of Musharraf, have a record of advancing and deepening popular support for Islamic extremism, measured by the exponential growth in madrasahs during periods of military rule. A few years ago The Daily Times published an extensive expose that presented the data.

At the same time, politically, military governments tend to mend fences with India. Musharraf went so far as to propose a solution for converting the Line of Control in Kashmir into a permanent border.

The result of this combination of policies is that Kashmir becomes less violent but anti-Indian terror increases. Thus, under Musharraf's tenure Kashmir devolved into a law and order problem for India, tourism increased and India began withdrawing soldiers. However, Pakistani intelligence supplied and financed the LeT attack against Mumbai in November 2008, three months after Musharraf resigned as President.

Elected civilian governments in Pakistan restrain the growth of Islamic extremism, including the proliferation of madrasahs, but do so by using Kashmir human rights and self determination to generate popular and Army support.

The result of this combination is increased infiltration into Jammu and Kashmir State during the past two years that has slowed the return to civil normality in Kashmir. However, there have been no new major LeT terrorist attacks against India.

Under both forms of government Pakistani intelligence avoids executive control by switching its emphasis, alternately supporting terrorism against India or Kashmiri militants.

{Mushy reduced the terror apparatus in TSP due to the threat of hot pursuit by the NDA govt during Parakram. It wasn't due to any enlightenment! After the UPA govt came and essentially reduced readiness of Ind Army the TSP has grown bolder and hence the frequent attacks on India. So this is incorrect analysis that attributes wrong causes for the effects.}


Lately, India is pressing an advantage in that the elected Pakistani government shares India's concern about the threat of Islamist terror and even a takeover of government at some point. However, the Zardari-Gilani leadership in Islamabad seems to lack the power, and maybe even the knowledge, to control the extremists. The Indians remain willing to help them, to be sure, as this week's talks showed.

{Again wrong analysis. The civilian facade in TSP is due to the need to have a civilian face in order to get more funds from US. If there were no clauses in Kerry-Lugar and such bilsl the TSPA would retake control before you can say Bismillah.}


Pakistan: President Asif Ali Zardari agreed to extend the tenure of Chief of Army Staff Gen. Ashfaq Kayani for two to three more years, The News reported 16 July, citing an unnamed source. The source said an announcement would be made within three days.

A major purpose of this extension is to keep Kayani out of internal politics. No Pakistani Chief of Army Staff could turn down such an offer, especially when it promises him the opportunity to shape the armed forces as he sees fit. Kayani has the chance to surpass Musharraf as Chief of Army Staff. :wink:

Security. Pakistani intelligence agencies have warned of possible attacks by extremists on foreign embassies, consulates and foreigners working in Pakistan, Sify.com reported 16 July. The agencies said the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan plans to attack Pakistani Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry, Lahore High Court Chief Justice Khwaja Sharif, Justice Khalilur Rehman Ramday and the justices' families, The Daily Times reported. Security has been increased in Punjab and other parts of Pakistan for possible targets. :mrgreen:

Pakistan-Afghanistan-NATO: Pakistan will impose restrictions on NATO cargo destined for Afghanistan following the disappearance of thousands of shipping containers carrying weapons and other supplies, The Nation reported 16 July, citing an unnamed source with the Pakistani Federal Board of Revenue.

The Board and the Commerce Ministry will impose the restrictions. The director of Custom Intelligence in Sindh and Baluchistan, Zahid Khokher, said criteria will be established soon for upcoming shipments. Tracking devices will be placed in each container to avoid theft and damage, according to Khokher. He said it would also be helpful for customs intelligence to maintain a record.

A NightWatch precept about insurgency is that the government and its allies always support both sides. Logistics systems are always porous and poverty induces good people to sell their weapons, ammunition and uniforms, even.

The new measures are a testament to that precept because they imply government awareness of the threat it implies. Meanwhile, the costs of shipping overland from Karachi just went up. They are already estimated to be in $ thousands per container with no guarantees anything will arrive on time or in usable condition. The railroad from the North Sea across Russia to Turkmenistan is more secure, higher volume and less expensive than the roads from Karachi to Kabul or Kandahar.

A cynical Reader might infer that the decline in road shipments via Karachi, resulting from the switch to higher capacity and more secure Russian rails, is the primary factor in Pakistan's new found concern to improve container security. The issue appears to be less about security than to regain market share.


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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby ramana » 20 Jul 2010 01:53

Response to Muppalla's post....

Brad Goodman wrote:I beg to differ on your analysis. here is what I feel is how Unkil thinks

1) First and foremost is short term solution to get out of Af Pak before the next election circus begins. Ombaba will have a tough time defending it along with a weak economy, moth eaten healthcare bill and no starter immigration reform. So they are giving carrots to pakis like the KL bill and reconciliation with good telebunnies etc. Now Pakis as smart as they are are raising India bogey to say boss we cannot take on bad bunnies because our troops are tied on eastern border. So amrikhan wants India to talk to pakis and create a semblance of aman ka tamasha which will negate this paki bluff

2) Amirkhans interest in paklands as strategic ally (basically a hit man) to control Middle East, C Asia, China & India. Now you must be suprised that I mention China here but trust me pakis are capable of selling their mothers for arms and money so cheena might be tallel than mountains and deeper than ocean friend but $$ are lot taller and lot deeper for pakis so if unkil quotes a right price in future (not peanuts) some new zia will step out of rawalpindi and take over the awan e sadar to wage the jeehaad in east turkestan. So for unkil pakis are easy to hire handy man to get all the dirty jobs done and done for cheap. They dont care the long term consequences of their acts. Hell every one has to pay some price for all actions & inactions so I beleive they are fully cognizant of the price they pay for supporting pakis and the benefits far outweigh the risk's of working with this international leper country.


3) Amrikhan is interested in india for two things. Its a big economy with huge skilled manpower and friendly population which it can cultivate as an future partner to further its strategic vision for Asia. Look at it this way NATO was unkils right hand for past 60 years slowly NATO is losing its shine. Neither they have developed any new technology nor have enough manpower to help unkil in global policing. They are more of a mill stone around unkils neck than an asset. Its like a close cousin who is slowly becoming old and poor and you know that in few years will start begging you for help and money. So like a smart baniya (capitalist) you weigh what benefits you can get from this relation ship and what risk you carry and decide to distance yourself from this person. Plus Unkil can exploit Cheena, India and Pakis to play one against the other to keep every one dependent on unkil so that way sam can maintain his status as global power and judge.

We can already see that when MMS and pakis run to Ombaba with complaints like school children. I am all against MMS wasting his precious time as 1 on 1 with Ombaba talking about pakis he needs to use that time wisely to further trade, visa, technology and education. As for pakis we have been taking blows on our cheeks and all parts of body for 20 + years now we can take a few more till we turn into 3rd largest economy in the world then hell can anyone tell us to act in restraint. We need technology and money to put up a fight right now we are short on both so all talk of bravardo is waste till we can muster up enough of these two.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby Rudradev » 20 Jul 2010 02:11

Sanjay M wrote:Pak/ISI lifting Ghilzai/Popalzai Pashtuns to the fore over Durranis causes no problems to India - it only causes problems to Durranis. Northern rejection of Popalzai/Ghilzai leadership is par for the course, since Northerners even reject Pakhtun Milat under Durranis.


The Popalzai are a subset of the Durranis, not of the Ghilzai.

There is a historical precedent for non-Pashtun Afghan minorities accepting the millat of a Pashtun ruling dynasty in modern Afghan history... the Barakzai dynasty, of whom Mohammed Zahir Shah was the last monarch. Barakzai are a branch of the Durranis, and inherited the country from the Durrani empire. If any Pashtun could be acceptable to the Tajiks, Hazaras and Uzbeks as a consensus leader, it would have to be a Durrani, who at least could claim the weight of historical precedent.

Immediately after 9-11, the US mulled bringing back King Zahir Shah, thinking that his status as a Durrani of the Barakzai dynasty could have resonated with enough of the Afghan population to create a national consensus in support of his leadership. The aged Zahir Shah, however, declined.

Hamid Karzai, a senior leader of the Popalzai, was among the next best choices from the US point of view. He was a well-known leader with Durrani blood whom the US thought they could manipulate.

Unfortunately, everything from that point forward was mismanaged. The US forgot that Karzai's strongest claim to Afghan leadership did not stem from any mass-popularity among a non-existent democratic polity, but indeed from his connections to a dynastic legacy. In a nation completely devoid of the rule of law, where for decades all political power had been determined solely by the capacity to inflict violence, the GOTUS wanted Karzai to respect "democratic norms" and hold "free and fair elections" without first building a state or re-establishing the rule of law. The Americans' sole motivation in this was of course, to be able to sell the war to the American electorate... "Yeehaw, we done brought Democracy to Aff-ganner-stan!"

The consequences of expecting corruption-free democracy to take root overnight in Afghanistan (by osmosis through the freshly cleansed pores of GIs' pink skins, no doubt) were disastrous. Hamid Karzai had never been brought in to Kabul for his mass base of popularity among Afghans, but only because his status within the Popalzai, and the tribal status of the Popalzai as a branch of the Durrani, conferred some degree of potential legtimacy to his overlordship in a profoundly feudal society. By accusing Karzai of "corruption" and "election rigging", the Americans disrespected him in the eyes of the Afghan people, and directly undermined the very status they were counting on for his legitimacy as an acceptable proxy.

The right way to sideline Karzai would have been to "kick him upstairs". First the nation should have been pacified by NATO forces under Karzai's nominal authority, which could have been acceptable to many Afghans thanks to his Durrani status (before the Americans undermined it). Then, the Americans could have re-established the rule of law under a new constitution that relegated Karzai to figurehead status, perhaps as some sort of rubber-stamp "president for life". Only then would Afghanistan have been ready for any semblance of democracy.

Instead the Americans demanded that Karzai win free and fair elections in a completely lawless land, even as they refused to punish Pakistan's efforts towards increasing its lawlessness. Karzai, a wily survivor of many political ups and downs in his time, has taken matters into his own hands and is busy cutting deals with various parties even at Holebroke rants and raves at him to toe the line.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby ramana » 20 Jul 2010 02:49

Very good summary of how we got here here and the importance of the Durrani legacy.

Wiki on Karzai

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hamid_Karzai

When the Taliban emerged in the mid 1990s, Karzai, like many other Afghans, supported them, because he saw them as a force that could finally end the violence and corruption in his country. However, he later broke with them and refused to serve as their ambassador to the United Nations, telling friends he felt that the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) was wrongly using them.[21] Karzai stated that "there were many wonderful people in the Taliban."[22]

Karzai lived in exile in Quetta, Pakistan, where he worked to reinstate former Afghan King Zahir Shah. On the morning of 14 July 1999, Karzai's father, Abdul Ahad Karzai, was gunned down as he was coming home from a mosque in the city of Quetta. Reports suggest that the Taliban carried out the assassination.[21] Hamid Karzai worked closely with Ahmad Shah Massoud in 2001 to help gather support for the anti-Taliban movement. In an interview in February 2005, Karzai criticised the role the United States played in empowering the Taliban to take control in Afghanistan.[


Most likely the ISI ordered the hit to prevent a Zahir Shah restoration.

In October 2001, Hamid Karzai and his group of fighters survived a US friendly fire missile attack in southern Afghanistan. The group suffered injuries and was treated in the United States; Karzai received injuries to his facial nerves as can sometimes be noticed during his speeches.[24] On 4 November 2001, American forces flew Karzai out of Afghanistan for protection


:!:

Karzai re-enacted the original coronation of Ahmad Shah Durrani at the shrine of Sher-i-Surkh outside of Kandahar where he had leaders of various Afghan tribes, including a descendent of the religious leader that originally chose Ahmad Shah Durrani as key players in this event.[27] Further evidence that Karzai views himself fulfilling a Durrani monarch's role arise from statements furnished by close allies within his government.[28] His younger brother, Ahmad Wali Karzai, has made statements to a similar effect.


And Holebrooke and his cohort want to have Democratic elections! Have they looked at tribal demographics?

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby Sanjay M » 20 Jul 2010 05:41

All you have said is trumped by the fact that the Tajiks and Uzbeks of Afghanistan were once part of their parent motherlands, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. Their areas were incorporated into Afghanistan by force, even while Moscow had weakened their Uzbek and Tajik motherlands. The USSR is now gone, and both Tajikistan and Uzbekistan are once again sovereign states. It's only reasonable that their Tajik and Uzbek children return to their folds.

So whatever loyalty you have to Karzai, ascribing his Pak-dealing to mere short-term wiliness, the fact is that Pak is gaining inroads from it, and they're not playing for the short-term. Note that India is immediately prodding Iran to build up their Chahbar port, which indicates what the Indian leadership is feeling about Karzai's dealings with Pak.

There's no need to keep pussyfooting around by resorting to penny-ante wiliness, when all of these unproductive back-and-forth tactics can be dispensed with, by splitting Afghanistan across the middle. Then the Pashtuns of the Southern Afghan rump can reunify with the Pashtuns of NWFP. That's good enough for me - I've no appetite for minutiae of the endlessly circular eddies of some drawn-out diplomatic soap opera, as you all do. It's about as stimulating as watching paint dry.

Instead, let's cut this drama short by pushing for ethnic reconsolidation, and the end of Pak. No more Pashtun problem means no more Kashmir problem. Then we can go on with our economic climb, instead of enduring another 26/11 every year, so that BRFites can watch it like another cricket match.

Wars are meant to be won, and not prolonged like some kind of strip-tease. Let's just get on with it, and make sure Pak is eliminated sooner rather than later.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby ramana » 20 Jul 2010 06:00

Wonder by thunder. Convergence in Indian strat community!

BC and KS agree on Blackwill proposition which is what Haas is also selling.


http://chellaney.spaces.live.com/blog/c ... 1227.entry

Needed: A new political order in the Hindu-Kush region

Time has come to accept the de facto partition of Afghanistan

Brahma Chellaney

The Sunday Guardian, July 18, 2010

As the Afghanistan war approaches its 10th anniversary, it is a reminder that this is the longest foreign war in American history. The U.S. war effort is clearly faltering, to the extent that Afghan President Hamid Karzai has started exploring the possibility of cutting his own deal with the Taliban.

If defeat is beginning to stare the U.S. in the face, it is largely because of President Barack Obama’s botched strategy. Obama has designed his twin troop surges not to militarily rout the Afghan Taliban but to strike a political deal with the enemy from a position of strength. But as CIA director Leon Panetta admitted recently about the Taliban, “We have seen no evidence that they are truly interested in reconciliation.”

Why would the Taliban be interested in negotiating a deal with the Americans when Obama publicly declared, just weeks after coming to office, that he was interested in a military exit from Afghanistan? The Taliban and their sponsors, the Pakistan military, simply want to wait out the Americans.

Unable to bring the Taliban to the negotiating table, the Obama administration is searching for credible options to fend off defeat. While the U.S. has no cost-free option, its least bad option, according to Robert Blackwill, is to accept the de facto partition of Afghanistan. Blackwill, who served as U.S. ambassador to India, deputy national security advisor for strategic planning and presidential envoy to Iraq in the George W. Bush administration, says in an article that de facto partition offers the only alternative to strategic defeat. That option means that the U.S. will end ground operations in Afghanistan but use air power and its special forces to attack Taliban strongholds in Afghanistan’s Pashtun-dominated south and east while ensuring that the non-Pashtun northern and western Afghan regions retain their present de facto autonomy.

Blackwill has picked up the de facto partition idea from M.J. Akbar, who has been advocating it for a while. This idea meshes with the thesis this writer has been propounding that the way to contain the scourge of international terrorism is to stop treating as sacrosanct the existing political borders of Afghanistan and Pakistan. There is continuing reluctance in the international policy discourse to face up to a central reality: The political border between these two problem countries has now ceased to exist in practice.

The so-called Durand Line, in any event, was an artificial, British-colonial invention that left the large Pashtun community divided into two. Set up in 1893 as the border between British-led India and Afghanistan, the Durand Line had been despised and rejected by Afghanistan for long as a colonial imposition.

Today, that line exists only in maps. On the ground, it has little political, ethnic and economic relevance, even as the Afghanistan-Pakistan region has become a magnet for the world’s jihadists. A de facto Pashtunistan, long sought by Pashtuns, now exists on the ruins of an ongoing Islamist militancy but without any political authority in charge.

The disappearance of the Af-Pak political border seems irreversible. While the writ of the Pakistani state no longer extends to nearly half of that country (much of Baluchistan, large parts of the North-West Frontier Province and the whole of the Federally Administered Tribal Areas), ever-larger swaths of Afghanistan are outside the control of the government in Kabul. The Pakistani army has lost increasing ground to insurgents in the western regions not because it is weaker than the armed extremists and insurgents but because an ethnic, tribal and militant backlash has resulted in the state withering away in the Pashtun and Baluch lands. Forced to cede control, the jihadist-infiltrated Pakistani military and its infamous Inter-Services Intelligence agency have chosen to support proxy militant groups, in addition to the Taliban.

The international reluctance to come to terms with the new reality is because of the fundamental, far-reaching issues such acceptance would throw open. It is simpler to just keep up the pretense of wanting to stabilize Pakistan and Afghanistan within their existing political frontiers.


Take U.S. policy. As if determined to hide from this reality, Washington is now pursuing, at least outwardly, a military approach toward Afghanistan through a troop “surge” and a political strategy toward Pakistan centered on the tripling of non-military aid. The plain fact is that the entire war effort has been focused on the wrong side of the Durand Line. A forward-looking Af-Pak policy demands consistency in approach toward these two interlinked countries and recognition of the 2,640-kilometer Durand Line’s disappearance. The ethnic genie cannot be put back in the bottle.

To arrest further deterioration in the Afghan war, the U.S. military needs to focus less on al-Qaeda — a badly splintered and weakened organization whose leadership operates out of mountain caves — and more on an increasingly resurgent Taliban that operates openly and has sanctuaries and a command-and-control structure in Pakistan.

The Obama administration complains that a weak, corrupt government in Kabul is driving Afghans into the Taliban’s clutches. So, it has sought to do business directly with provincial governors and tribal leaders and seek their help to set up local, Iraq-style militias to assist the U.S. forces. Yet in Pakistan it is doing the opposite: propping up a shaky, inept central government while pampering the military establishment that is working to undermine the civilians in power. Despite the generous U.S. aid, the 2010 Failed States Index ranks Pakistan as the 10th most failed state on Earth.


Let’s be clear: Pakistan and Afghanistan, two artificially created states with no roots in history that have searched endlessly for a national identity, constitute the most dangerous region on earth. They have emerged as the global epicenter of transnational terrorism and narcotics trade. Additionally, Pakistan is where state-nurtured terrorism and state-reared nuclear smuggling uniquely inters
ect.

Yet, as if the forces of terror can be boxed in, the U.S. is now scaling back its objective to regionally contain rather than defeat terrorism — a strategy that promises to keep the Af-Pak problem as a festering threat to global security.

Given that this region has become ungovernable and borderless, it seems pointless to treat the existing political frontiers of Afghanistan and Pakistan as sacrosanct when the Af-Pak fusion term itself implies the two are no longer separate entities. The time has come to start debating what kind of a new political order in the Hindu-Kush region could create stable, moderate, governable and ethnically more harmonious states. Accepting the de facto partition of Afghanistan can serve as a first step in that direction.

July 18 12:01 PM


Muppalla
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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby Muppalla » 20 Jul 2010 06:16

Jai Ho Pasthunistan.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby RajeshA » 20 Jul 2010 14:25

No matter what kind of spin, Pakis have been set up to lose big time!

The major problem facing the Americans in Afghanistan was simply that the Taliban insurgents in Afghanistan had a safe haven - FATA, Pukhtunkhwa-Khyber, Northern Baluchistan.

This no-go area in West Pakistan has in fact almost ruined the whole American enterprise in Afghanistan. The Americans are coming to their senses, that with such constraints they cannot win in Afghanistan.

They themselves cannot dismiss the Durand Line, because that sits very uncomfortable with their allies the Pakis, who have to answer to their own people, why Americans are killing Pakis and the Pakistani Army is twiddling its thumbs. If the Americans cannot erase the Durand Line, then somebody else has to do it - the Pushtun, the Taliban.

Once Pushtun Areas in Pakistan are not under the charge and sovereignty of Pakistan, only then can any power really pursue the Al-Qaeda, the Taliban without their hands tied behind their backs. The Americans are trying to lure out the Taliban out of their guerrilla mode out into the open.

If NATO surrenders the Pushtun Areas in Afghanistan to the Taliban, de-facto the Taliban become the rulers of the whole of Pushtunistan - Afghan side and Pakistan side. The Pakistani Army control over the Pushtun areas is far weaker today then it was before 2001. There is not much the Taliban would have to do to assert their own control over these areas. So the splitting of Pakistan is pre-programmed.

In the future, once there is only one Pushtunistan entity with a Taliban leadership and only a marginal international recognition, it will be far easier for the Americans to dominate the region, than it is now.
Blackwill wrote:Announcing that we will retain an active combat role in Afghanistan for years to come and that we do not accept permanent Taliban control of the south, the United States and its allies could withdraw combat forces from most of Pashtun Afghanistan (about half the country), including Kandahar, over several months.


The Americans will keep the option of intervention in the new greater Pushtunistan entity as and when they wish. It depends on the behavior of Taliban.

American success in Afghanistan depends on Pakistan's loss of their Pushtun areas.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby chaanakya » 20 Jul 2010 16:23

Muppalla wrote:Jai Ho Pasthunistan.



Need to resurrect Badshah Khan aka Frontier Gandhi aka Khan Abdul Gaffar Khan and remind them of their great legacy.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby Sanjay M » 20 Jul 2010 18:01

The successful detachment of Pashtun areas could well depend upon taking that momentum to other areas, like Balochistan. After all, landlocked Pashtuns would benefit from having an alternate access route to the sea, rather than just being dependent upon Pakjab.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby JE Menon » 20 Jul 2010 18:45

The Americans are not leaving Afghanistan anytime soon, the idiotic timelines set by Obama notwithstanding. Of course, the de facto partition pretty much already exists... What is needed is a greater recognition of the invalidity of the Durand Line, and that recognition can only (or primarily) be concretized by American/NATO military actions across the border conducted with impunity. The Americans will not leave Afghanistan until Pakistan changes fundamentally by itself or is changed by them. We merely need to enjoy the show and offer intelligent encouragement.

No US government will be able to withdraw so long as the possibility of another 9/11 launched from a legally non-existent Pashtunistan remains. This is why the regular reminders from high-ranking American officials that a successful attack on US soil (similar to the failed one of Faizal Shehzad) will result in an unpredictable retaliation. This is why the Pakistani military is gradually getting into a strategic chokehold where every aspect of its hitherto unhindered policy of exporting terror is being steadily whittled down - including terror directed against India. Not, of course, at a pace we may be fully in sync with, but it's happening.

Question is, how will the Pakistani military react when faced with this option? There is no choice really. It's survival is at stake. But they can be suicidal and/or stupid - and strike out eastwards in order to prove the purity of the two nation theory.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby RamaY » 20 Jul 2010 18:56

If I really train my brain to see only the positive side :roll: I see the following -

This is an orchestrated game by India and USA to allow Paki perfidy given that all unstable regions are handed over to TSP so that it can successfully do a Bhasmasura. This could be the reason behind the "idea of partitioning Afghanistan". The unstable southern Afghanistan is put under TSPA's de facto control, while northern Afghanistan is salvaged with the help of US/NATO/INDIA and strengthened. India can play a major role in developing this region a.l.a South-Korea (w.r.t NK) or West Germany (w.r.t EG).

The assumption here are -

* The idea Pashtunistan is kept alive and it further unifies and solidifies a separate state demand.
* Balochistan takes cue from this example and starts its long & puritan journey towards self-determination
* TSPA will be occupied with controlling the puritan fires in its Pakijab house (of course with the help of democratic USA/NATO, communist China etc.,)
* As far as India is concerned this will have little/no impact on Cashmere.


***
Alas, my yindoo-punda-mentalist brain cannot think positive beyond 72 seconds :((

Taliban - will see this as a victory against another duper-power and will be emboldened. They will argue (with ISI/TSPA of course) that arrah will support only the purest and demand that TSPA convert or get beheaded. They might demand access to the family jewels in the hope to resolve the core ummah issue.

TSPA - being trained to smell victory out of camel dung, will get emboldened by its strategy-of-perfidy, use of non-state actors, and family jewels and would like to push the envelop a bit further and create next Kargil/Mumbai. I prefer to have a INC govt in power at that time as they have to prove that they are tougher than BJP, in a kargil-like scenario.

WKKs - get more agitated and louder as the RAPEs get raped by demands for purity in paquistan. Demand a better and coordinated crowd control by national security apparatus.

Closet-Pakis a.k.a Huriyat - Once again I believe in Gandhian principles and prefer direct contact with poor/dirty indians/abduls instead of their viceroys. So I prefer all these Cashmere leaders travel in a janata-express train and meet their 72 due to some Naxal-sabotage or Didi-inefficiency factor.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby ramana » 20 Jul 2010 20:42

Perceptive article by R. Vaidya.....

R Vaidya wrote:http://www.dnaindia.com/mobile/report.php?n=1412011

Dealing with Pak Taliban
R Vaidyanathan July 20, 0:22 IST
It is no more a question of if, but when. My assessment is that there will be a Talibanised government in Pakistan within two to three years, after a prolonged civil war. Pakistan is currently a ferocious Doberman held on a leash by the US, and fed with exotic bones. It was meant to bark at and bite the USSR (and India) when the cold war was on, but the US realised recently that the dog has developed rabies and has become ferocious enough to bite the owner and the neighbours. The US has no clue on what to do with its rabid canine. Running away from it is one option. The other is to try its best to force India, the eastern neighbour, to distract it with more bones like joint sovereignty of Jammu & Kashmir. The hope is that the dog will be distracted enough to allow the US to make its getaway from Afghanistan. Whatever the scenario, the net result will be an increasingly Talibanised Pakistan.The problems faced by Pakistan are of its own making. It sees itself as a leader of the Islamic world. One Egyptian professor told me after visiting Pakistan in the 1990s that they gave him the impression that Islam was invented on August 14, 1947. During the recent Facebook prophet controversy, it was Pakistan which banned all internet media — something that wasn’t done by many countries even in the Middle East. Some sections of Pakistani society have embarked on a dangerous path of searching for pure Islam. First, they targeted Hindus and Christians using blasphemy laws. Then they targeted Ahmaddiyas (or Ahmadis) by declaring them to be non-Muslims. The grave of Abdus Salam says he is the “First Nobel laureate in physics,” with the word “Islamic” being deleted after the word “first”.For some radical Sunnis, Shias are less than pure Muslims. More recently, Sufis have been targeted. When Ahmaddiyas were butchered recently, the media categorised them as a religious sect and many “experts” absurdly argued that all this was done by the Ahmaddiyas themselves to abrogate the blasphemy laws which had banned them from calling themselves Muslims. Pakistan is thus close to civil war.Pakistan’s finance ministry (May 24, 2009) says that terror costs the country more than US$ 35 billion, but it is not clear whether this figure includes the amounts spent on instigating terror in Kashmir valley and in other parts of the world. Khaled Ahmed (2007) gave an estimate that Pakistan pays into Kashmir around US$ 2.6 billion annually to keep the All Party Hurriyat Conference (APHC) and other radical organisations alive. This also includes an “infiltration budget”. Pakistan gets around 800 “incursions” annually for this money. The economy of Pakistan, mostly owned by the army and completely dependent on US crumbs, is in a shambles. Singapore Airlines has closed shop and three foreign institutional investors (FIIs) who set up offices some years ago have closed down. The elites are trying to emigrate to the west after going through special ID checks. India does not comprehend the impending denouement in the terrorist state of Pakistan. We absurdly mouth the belief that the rabid Doberman is also a “victim” a of terrorism and conduct talks with political leaders who do not wield any real power in Pakistan — as the shenanigans of foreign minister SM Qureshi in the recent India-Pakistan talks show. If at all, India should talk directly to Ashfaq Kayani, the army chief, and Shuja Ahmed, the ISI chief. But even they are unlikely to be able to control the army as the cadre that grew up during the Zia ul-Haq regime is now reaching the top. Their allegiance may be to Wahabi Islam, and not necessarily to the Pakistani state or army. They want to erase their Indic past and the primary purpose of existence is the destruction of India or become its equal. The Indo-Pak hyphenation is gone in global discussions and Pakistan’s problems are not discussed, but Pakistan is recognised as a global headache. Of course, they will as usual argue with the US even though a pistol is held to their own head, but declining powers like the US can only bribe and beg with these blackmailers.India should keep quiet and our civil society should avoid links with that medieval monster, especially if a Taliban government gets formed in Pakistan. It may take few years for such a government to implement its ideology. Some Wagah candle-kissers may want India to help the liberal society of Pakistan, but liberals are trying to leave Pakistan. There is a possibility of Pakistanis trying to migrate to India, but efforts should be made to keep them on the other side of the border. A stable Pakistan is more dangerous to India than a dynamic disequilibrium. As long as there is internal strife and civil war they will be very busy wallowing in their own mess. Any stability will make them look east.


Lot of BRF wisdom in the article. Hope it gets wide coverage.

brihaspati
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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby brihaspati » 20 Jul 2010 20:55

The US army may not have much options. I have proposed before, that the US now is in a last stages of Vietnam scenario. They cannot leave until the last bitter end, because that will mean a severe loss of face and its military and political repercussions felt globally. But they will be forced to leave as the situation will become untenable for them to hold on to power.

In fact this winter and the following spring will be crucial. If US admin is unable to finalize a honourable retreat time schedule at least in agreement before the winter sets in, the army will have to face a two faced squeeze, one from the north and west and the other from the south and east. The longer the US army stays the more it is helping radicalize the lower ranks of the PA and providing unknowingly the resources and the ideological excuses for the lower ranks to switch sides. The radicalizing will proceed anyway, with or without US presence. However, US presence helps in accelerating it.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby vijayk » 20 Jul 2010 22:53

brihaspati wrote:The US army may not have much options. I have proposed before, that the US now is in a last stages of Vietnam scenario. They cannot leave until the last bitter end, because that will mean a severe loss of face and its military and political repercussions felt globally. But they will be forced to leave as the situation will become untenable for them to hold on to power.

In fact this winter and the following spring will be crucial. If US admin is unable to finalize a honourable retreat time schedule at least in agreement before the winter sets in, the army will have to face a two faced squeeze, one from the north and west and the other from the south and east. The longer the US army stays the more it is helping radicalize the lower ranks of the PA and providing unknowingly the resources and the ideological excuses for the lower ranks to switch sides. The radicalizing will proceed anyway, with or without US presence. However, US presence helps in accelerating it.


1. Do you think it is possible that US will then decide to eliminate the top threats in TSP army or ISI or top guns of LET?

2. If they decide, will they use let us join the operation?

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby Muppalla » 20 Jul 2010 23:27

US has two options:
(1) Reorganize AF-Pak on ethnic lines, destroy nukes in TSP.
(2) Create a situation where the direction of the terror is not directed towards west. In that pursuit to makesure TSP does not collapse give the keys to China to manage TSP.

I beleive it is try to see if (2) works.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby brihaspati » 20 Jul 2010 23:31

vijayk wrote

1. Do you think it is possible that US will then decide to eliminate the top threats in TSP army or ISI or top guns of LET?
2. If they decide, will they use let us join the operation?


I am not sure the US army has the "cunning" to outsmart PA second line of command. First the army is handicapped by political doubt in the admin. The admin is handicapped by thoughts of potential drastic swing arounds in policy subsequent 2012. Political indecision is fatal for war. The targets for the US army and its allies are shifting in the sands as USA realizes the trap it has created for itself in the cumulative errors of understanding of Islamism and Pakism.To a great extent perhaps the original Brit networks of subcontinental info gathering is responsible for the colouring of info.

There are outright risks for the USA in trying to eliminate the top rung of PA, or whom they consider threats. The PA upper leadership will pretend to the every last moment that they are with the USA, and some of the Taleb sympathizers will probably even manage asylum in the west. The USA will knowingly allow this since, it will leave a thread of connection to come back and have underhand dealings with the new Talebjabi regime. If they go for known black sheep in the regime, they may not be sure of how many other sleepers they will therefore force to cross over earlier to the Talebs.

Why should the USA actually play any active role against Islamist takeover? They did not do so in Iran, where are there quite a few indications that the USA actually helped keep the army neutral while Khomeini took over and replaced the Shah, even though the Shah was a protege of USA himself! The Reagan admin had no problem in doing a Contra deal with Khomeini on the sly.

The US admin has already invented the next largest global threat - Iranian nukes, and can use that threat to justify a transfer of power to Islamists who pretend to be Sunni's and therefore anti-Iranian. in fact I will not be too surprised, if soon policy buff from USA start writing about the greater effectiveness of Sunni Islamists in power in AFPak as the best possible check against Iranian ambitions compared to less efficient regimes like that in current Islamabad or Kabul.

I think USA will try to keep India out of any attack on Pakis. For that takes the whole outcome out of USA control. Wars are started on one set of premise, while they end on premises created by the developments within the war. USA' has a kind of strategic blindness where Islamism is concerned, and therefore fails to take appropriate tactical steps. If such a war ends in India;s decisive victory, India gains influence and control over the region that makes USA irrelevant. So they will try to prevent war action by India to the very last moment.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby aqkhan » 21 Jul 2010 03:16

Posting from another forum:

These are not my views, but an Afghan's view of what Pakistan's interests are vis-a-vis Afghanistan

Afghans live like in hell for the last 30 plus years, but for the first time we heard Taliban name was about 14 years ago. Who were the biggest thread to Afghanistan unity before them?

The fight is not over Kharoti, Durani etc. The war is over unknown reasons. What tribe Massoud and Rabbani belong to when he was fighting Hekmatyar? What tribe Karmal belong to when he was fighting with 8 Mujihadeens leaders (Tajik, Pashtoon, Hazara etc.) and his fellow Parchamis and Khaliqis?

For your information, dividing Afghanistan is not a solution. The real solution is when Afghanistan recognize Pakistan existing and I think me and you agree on this. Pakistan will not let any party bring peace to Afghanistan and be in control of the country including Taliban. Pakistan will eliminate Taliban if Taliban are on verge of bringing peace to the country. Reason, Pakistan stability is at risk if Afghanistan gets stability.

The problem with Afghans (Pashtoons, Tajiks, Hazaras etc.) is they are not afraid to ask for Pakistan help any time. Abdullah 2X will not hesitate for a day to ask for Pakistan help if he find out he can defeat Karzai with Pakistan help. He done this in the past.


I was going through the Afghan people's forum posts, they all hate Pakistan! I think these Pashtun rebels have entered through NWFP and are engaged in terrorist activities in Pakistan to destabilize it, simply because they understand that Pakistan will not work for a stable Afghanistan.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby ramana » 22 Jul 2010 02:00

GP in Pioneer

EDITS | Thursday, July 22, 2010 | Email | Print | | Back


Obama reviews his agenda

G Parthasarathy

Few developments have so profoundly affected the course of India-Pakistan relations as the stunning revelations by Daood Gilani aka David Coleman Headley about the direct involvement of the ISI and Hafiz Mohammed Saeed in the 26/11 terror attack on Mumbai. Just on the eve of Foreign Minister SM Krishna’s visit to Pakistan, US National Security Adviser Gen James Jones remarked in Delhi, “In our bilateral relationship with Pakistan, we have expressed strong concerns over the existence within the borders of Pakistan, of terrorist organisations that have goals to destabilise our way of life, your way of life, to prevent (our) strategic goals from being achieved in Afghanistan.”

Cornered by pressure from the US on the role of its favourite jihadi groups in India and Afghanistan, Gen Ashfaq Parvez Kayani has evidently worked to get a weak civilian Government to divert attention from its role in the Mumbai outrage by reverting to a Jammu & Kashmir-centric agenda, even going to the extent of demanding “time-bound” efforts to resolve “core issues” to its satisfaction. India should realise that Pakistan’s politicians, who have watched elected Prime Ministers executed, assassinated or exiled during Army rule, have no stomach any longer to defy Army diktats.

The cooperation extended by the Obama Administration in the interrogation of Headley appears to be part of its larger strategic review of global policies. The US State Department has rejected Pakistani accusations of “human rights violations” during recent protests in the Kashmir Valley. Referring to these events, the State Department Spokesman has said, “We regret the loss of lives in this incident. It is an internal matter (of India). We respect the efforts of the Government of India to resolve the current situation in Kashmir. In terms of the protest, we would urge everyone to refrain from violence and conduct protests in a peaceful manner.”

Moreover, the new Obama National Security Doctrine states, “Collective action is needed in terms of engagement with friends and allies. The US must also work to build deeper and more effective partnerships with other key centres of influence — including China, India and Russia, as well as increasingly influential nations such as Brazil, South Africa and Indonesia.” It adds, “We value India’s growing leadership on a wide array of global issues, through groups such as the G 20, and will seek to work with India to promote stability in South Asia and elsewhere in the world.”

On July 1, the Pentagon’s Under Secretary for Defence Policy (the counterpart of India’s Defence Secretary), Ms Michele Flournoy, outlined the US approach in Asia. She asserted that it no longer makes sense to discuss the increasingly inter-connected Asian region in terms of ‘East Asian’ security or ‘South Asian’ security. She said, “It also means that the security of Asia’s two dominant powers (India and China) can no longer be viewed as a zero sum game. A safer and more secure India that is close to the United States should not be seen as a threat and vice versa. Indeed all three countries play an important role in that region’s stability.” Ms Flournoy also remarked that the economies of both India and the US rely on effective maritime security to preserve free passage in the Indian Ocean and surrounding waterways.

India believes that its interests are not served when US-China relations are marked by collusion, as was apprehended in the first year of the Obama Administration, or by confrontation, which marked the early years of the Cold War. Moreover, emerging American policies appear to reject Chinese efforts to undermine India’s ‘Look East’ policy. China views India’s engagement with its Asia-Pacific neighbourhood with suspicion, asserting that India is merely a “South Asian power”.

While Ms Flournoy indicated that the Obama Administration recognises that India has a “lot to offer” in space technology and that agreements are being finalised to permit “frontline American (defence) technologies to be shared” with us, substantial spadework remains to be done if the relationship is to grow significantly. American firms are still restricted in developing relations with the Indian Space Research Organisation and key defence industries.

Though India has already moved to acquire C 130 J transport aircraft and P 8 maritime reconnaissance aircraft and appears interested in meeting its shortages in field artillery by purchases from the US for its mountain divisions, future high value Indian defence acquisitions should have detailed provisions for technology transfer and imports from India by American suppliers — provisions which the American defence industry needs to get familiar with.

The US is now realising that despite all its solicitude towards and assistance for Pakistan, Gen Kayani has no intention of ending support to Taliban groups like the Quetta Shura led by Mullah Omar and the Haqqani network based in North Waziristan which are inflicting heavy casualties on American forces in Afghanistan. Moreover, these groups are now being reinforced by the Lashkar-e-Tayyeba.

In these circumstances, there are now calls in the US, led by influential Congressmen and Gen David Petraeus, to declare the Haqqani network as a terrorist organisation. Thus, contrary to earlier perceptions, it now appears that while the US may nominally thin down its forces in Afghanistan and even move its forces out of southern Afghanistan, the Americans will not permit a Taliban takeover of Afghanistan and will retain adequate air power and ground forces to inflict continuing damage on the Taliban and Al Qaeda bases on either side of the Durand Line. {Blackwill line}

Moreover, there are now indications that as the Pentagon readies for an extended stay in Afghanistan, an improved US-Russian relationship is leading to the US reducing its dependence on Pakistan for its fuel and logistical supplies which will now come increasingly through Russia and Central Asia in the coming years.

Preparations now appear to have commenced for US President Barack Obama’s visit to India this November. While the Obama Administration is now showing a better understanding of India’s security concerns, New Delhi would be well-advised to prepare even now to utilise his visit for addressing other concerns also like the existing sanctions on Indian Defence Research and Space Organisation. A strategic partnership can have little meaning if such sanctions persist. Moreover, India needs to work with both the US and Russia in thwarting Gen Kayani’s jihadi ambitions of installing a Taliban-oriented regime in Kabul. India should ensure that Pakistan’s men in khaki pay a heavy price for their jihadi ambitions.


Tame/sudden ending?

Carl_T
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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby Carl_T » 22 Jul 2010 03:13

I wonder if Taliban will be brought to power as a way to control Pakistan. Maybe a merging of good and bad Taliban interests.

After US withdrawal I feel relations with India may improve to some extent, but it is futile wondering about this because Ombaba's plans seem to have no clear strategic goal.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby Sanjay M » 22 Jul 2010 03:29


abhishek_sharma
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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby abhishek_sharma » 22 Jul 2010 07:58

Obama Faces New Doubts on Pursuing Afghan War

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/22/world/asia/22assess.html

ramana
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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby ramana » 22 Jul 2010 19:40

This is a vrey good book. It covers events upto early 2010. His historical section is accurate and matches BR knowledge.

Afghanistan: A Cultural and Political History By Thomas Barfield

Publisher: Princeton University Press 2010 | 400 Pages | ISBN: 0691145687 |

A brilliant book to educate all of us about a country we should know and appreciate. . . . Thomas Barfield's book on Afghanistan is likely to become the first source that serious students turn to as a guide to this complicated country. His comprehensive portrait of Afghanistan is a stunning achievement.
(Joseph Richard Preville Saudi Gazette )

Impressive. . . . Barfield traces much of what Afghanistan is about to its geography and to developments from thousands of years ago, but he also asserts that the decade of Russian occupation changed Afghanistan permanently.
(Harry Eagar Maui News )

Barfield shows how Afghan notions of political legitimacy and social organization are eerily timeless. . . . This book may change the way you think about Afghanistan.
(Brian Kappler Montreal Gazette )

This fascinating survey of Afghanistan is an excellent book for those wanting to go beyond headlines. Written by an expert, with the stylistic flair to be savored by the nonexpert, Afghanistan also has judgments worthy of scholarly reflection. Barfield has captured political, social, and cultural insights of extraordinary importance to the policy arguments of today and tomorrow. Deploying diplomats, soldiers, and aid workers in particular should pay attention.
(Ronald E. Neumann, U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan, 2005-2007 )



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