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It was the first time in 64 years since Pakistan came into being that the country's military and intelligence bosses had to appear before an unprecedented joint session of parliament to explain their collective failure on May 2, 2011.
When asked by a member of parliament whether Mullah Omar and Zawahiri could also be present in Pakistan without the knowledge of the ISI, Pasha replied, "Yes, this could be possible and we are enhancing our intelligence network and improving relations with tribal chiefs (in the Pakistan-Afghanistan border belt) to get any such information."
Amir Mir is a senior Pakistani journalist and the author of several books on the subject of militant Islam and terrorism, the latest being Talibanisation of Pakistan: From 9/11 to 26/11.

[Description of Source: Hong Kong Asia Times Online in English -- Online newspaper focusing on political and economic issues from an "Asian perspective," with over 50 contributors in 17 Asian countries, the United States, and Europe, and a branch office in Bangkok; successor of the Hong Kong/Bangkok-based print daily Asia Times that closed in 1997, it claims an average of 100,000 daily site visitors, with 65% of the audience based in North America, and 22% in the Asia-Pacific region; tends to be critical of the United States; URL: http://www.atimes.com]


Pakistan: US Drone Attacks Targeting Foreign Terrorists in North Waziristan
SAP20110719118001 Islamabad The News Online in English 19 Jul 11
[Report by Amir Mir: "White Jihadis key target of drones"]
DUBAI: The July 5 killing of yet another white Jihadi commander in an American drone strike in North Waziristan - an Australian national this time - has given credence to some earlier claims by the Western intelligence agencies that the al-Qaeda network in Pakistan is increasingly recruiting white Muslim converts to widen the pool of terrorists who are able to foil racial profiling and hit Western targets.
The white Jihadi killed by two missiles fired by a drone at around 11:00 pm on July 5, 2011 in Mir Ali area of North Waziristan has been identified as Saifullah who used to serve as a key aide to Osama bin Laden and had been working in tandem with al-Qaeda's chief military strategist, Commander Ilyas Kashmiri, who was killed in a drone attack on June 3, 2011. Saifullah, 50 years old, has been described as a middle-ranking al-Qaeda leader, though little more is known about him.
The deadly strike actually targeted a guesthouse and also killed five other militants. In fact, the Mir Ali area, where Saifullah was killed, is in the sphere of influence of Abu Kasha al Iraqi, an al-Qaeda leader who serves as a key link to the Taliban and supports the external operations network of al-Qaeda, now led by Dr Ayman Al-Zawahiri. Pakistani Taliban leader Hafiz Gul Bahadar and the Haqqani Network led by Jalaluddin Haqqani's elder son Sirajuddin Haqqani, also operate in Mir Ali, which is a known hub for al-Qaeda's military and external operational councils.
An increasing number of Westerners who wanted to join the so-called Jihadi al-Qaeda is waging against the US-led Allied Forces in Afghanistan have travelled to the Pakistani tribal areas in recent years, which include Americans, Britons, Germans, French, and Australians. The al-Qaeda-trained white Jihadi have formed their own contingents in North Waziristan, which are also fighting along al-Qaeda militants on the Pak-Afghan border. The white Jihadis living in North Waziristan wear local clothes and travel in small groups in vehicles or on motorcycles, flaunting weapons including assault rifles, rocket launchers and rocket-propelled grenades. In fact, recruits bearing Western citizenship are prized by al-Qaeda leadership, mainly because of their nationality and English speaking ability. Therefore, more and more Muslim converts from the West are being chosen by the international Jihadi mafia as recruits to strike in the heart of the West.
The current spike in drone attacks in Mir Ali area is ostensibly meant to target the leadership of the North Waziristan-based white Jihadis, which the Western intelligence agencies believe, has been training and dispatching white men to Europe for carrying out commando-style terrorist raids in the West - similar to the 26/11 attacks in the Indian commercial capital of Mumbai that killed 166 people, including many foreigners. Therefore, the US Central Intelligence Agency, which actually runs the drone programme, has been repeatedly targeting al-Qaeda hide outs in the Mir Ali area of North Waziristan, ostensibly to wipe out the white Jihadis' network from there. So far this year, the CIA has carried out a record number of 43 drone attacks in the tribal areas of Pakistan, killing over 360 people, and is well off the pace of the 124 drone strikes that took place in 2010.
Commander Saifullah is not the first Muslim convert from the West to have been killed in Mir Ali. In fact, 16 Germans and two Britons have been reportedly killed in drone strikes in Mir Ali since September 8, 2010. All the killed Europeans were members of the Islamic Jehad Group (IJG), an al-Qaeda affiliate based in Mir Ali, which had suffered the last setback on December 10, 2010, with the killing of two white commanders, both British nationals, in a US drone attack. The Britons were killed in Khadar Khel town of Miranshah in North Waziristan and identified as Stephen and Smith.
They were known in the militant circles with their pseudonyms of Abu Bakar (Stephen) and Abu Mansoor (Smith), and were travelling in a vehicle with two other local militants when the drone targeted them. Even though the car was completely destroyed and little remained of the bodies, local militants were quick to take out from the burnt vehicle the mutilated corpses for burial. Stephen alias Abu Bakar, 47, was subsequently identified as a senior al-Qaeda operative who was imparting terror training to a group of white Jihadis from Great Britain in North Waziristan to carry out terrorist operations in Europe and America. Smith alias Abu Mansoor, 28, was identified as the right hand man of Stephen in the Islamic Army of Great Britain.
Hardly two months before the killing of Stephen and Smith, another American drone had killed the operational chief of the Britons in the same area. Abdul Jabbar, a British national, was killed in a drone attack in North Waziristan on October 4, 2010. Identified as the chief operational commander of the Islamic Army of Great Britain, he was a British citizen, came from the Jhelum district of Punjab in Pakistan, and had a British wife. Abdul Jabbar had earlier survived a drone strike on September 8, 2010, targeting a training camp being run by Hafiz Gul Bahadar. Jabbar was tasked by the Waziristan-based al-Qaeda leadership to plan Mumbai-style fidayeen attacks against targets in the Great Britain, Germany and France.
Besides perishing Abdul Jabbar, the October 4, 2010 drone attack also killed German nationals who were known in the militant circles of North Waziristan with their Islamic names of Imran and Shahab. According to the intelligence information the British authorities had subsequently shared with their Pakistani counterparts, Jabbar, Imran and Shahab had been making frequent phone calls to England and Germany to their jihadi contacts in a bid to set off the terror plot by finding appropriate accomplices in Europe. In their conversations, the white jihadis reportedly used to talk about facilitators and logistics they needed in Europe to successfully execute their terrorist operations.
However, Jabbar's younger brother, who is a key leader in the lslamic Army of Great Britain, and two other most wanted German jihadis were lucky enough to have survived the October 4 drone hit. The white Germans - 27-year-old Mouneer Chouka alias Abu Adam and 25-year-old Yaseen Chouka alias Abu Ibrahim are real brothers. Coming from Bonn, both lead a group of 100-plus German militants who had travelled to the border areas of Pakistan in recent years, raising security alert in Europe. The information about the presence and activities of the Chouka brothers in North Waziristan as well as the hatching of a Mumbai-like terror plot for Europe actually came from an arrested German jihadi of the Afghan origin, Rami Mackenzie alias Ahmed Siddiqi.
The 36-year-old was part of an 11-member Jihadi cell which was to take part in the European terror plot, but was arrested in the Afghan capital, Kabul, in the beginning of July 2010. He is reported to have told his American interrogators that the European terror plot was approved by none other than Osama bin Laden who had also provided some funding to execute the scheme. Currently being held at the US military airbase at Bagram, Siddiqi further told his interrogators that small teams of militants were to model their missions in European countries on the pattern of Mumbai attacks by first seizing and then killing hostages.
While unveiling the terror plans of the Chouka brother, Siddiqi reportedly told his interrogators that they have already trained and sent back to Europe over a dozen well-trained, battle-hardened German militants who had been tasked to carry out Mumbai-like terror attacks in Europe. The unearthing of the European terror plot soon led to an unprecedented surge in the American drone strikes in North Waziristan, primarily to target the hideouts of the Islamic Army of Great Britain, thus killing many of its top leadership.

[Description of Source: Islamabad The News Online in English -- Website of a widely read, influential English daily, member of the Jang publishing group. Neutral editorial policy, good coverage of domestic and international issues. Usually offers leading news and analysis on issues related to war against terrorism. Circulation estimated at 55,000; URL: http://www.thenews.com.pk/]


Author: Pakistan Move To Tackle Haqqanis With Force to be Counter-productive
SAP20110720114002 Islamabad The News Online in English 20 Jul 11
[Article by Tanvir Ahmad Khan: "Hacking Into Haqqanis?"]
The single most significant cause of the fairly long drawn out tension between Pakistan and the United States continues to be Washington's demand for a Pakistani offensive against the forces present in North Waziristan. Geography alone adds to the American impatience with the Pakistan army. They want to shift the axis of military operations from the southern to the eastern provinces of Afghanistan to create strategic space for a smaller but permanent military presence to control "the Af-Pak theatre".
A cursory look at the map will identify the crucial area as North Waziristan in Pakistan and Khost, Paktia and Paktita in Afghanistan. It provides several routes to most parts of Afghanistan including Kabul. Home to a number of armed militias, Washington's concern has increasingly focused on the so-called Haqqani network that allegedly has strong links with Al-Qaeda and also continues to enjoy Pakistan's support as its 'strategic asset'. Pakistan's responses have included an offer to persuade the Haqqanis to negotiate with the Karzai regime. It is argued that no matter what Pakistan does, Siraj Haqqani would not abandon the Al-Qaeda connection and mission.
Apart from doubts about Pakistan delivering on the offer to American satisfaction, the US military cannot accept the present ideological, political and military potential of the "network". The insistence upon action against North Waziristan is, therefore, fundamentally a demand to help the US forces decimate the Haqqani network.
A new study by West Point's 'Combating Terrorism Centre' has projected the Haqqani network on a scale that regional analysts of the Afghan scene would find as exaggerated. It dwells at length on Jalaluddin Haqqani's anti-Soviet outreach as an ideological force and as the "nexus" organisation that played an important part in keeping diverse militant tribal and religious forces of the era together. Ignoring the hiatus imposed upon the Haqqanis by the 2001 invasion and the illness of Jalaluddin, it goes on to build a narrative of continuity and reinvigoration under his son Sirajuddin Haqqani. The study emphasises the role of the network as an 'enabler' for Al-Qaeda on the one hand and other armed groups on the other. It argues that its "critical role in sustaining cycles of violence far beyond its region of overt influence" is still under-estimated.
The Haqqani network is portrayed as a global rather than a local threat. The West Point study does not deny that even as the Haqqani network cooperates with organisations such as Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), it tries to restrain the hard-core anti-Pakistan "Taliban" from actions hostile to Pakistan.
When one contemplates numerous strands that define the Haqqani network, particularly its geographical zone of influence, two seemingly irreconcilable conclusions emerge. The American analysts may be right that it could provide the matrix of long term nationalistic resistance to their indefinite military presence in Afghanistan. Secondly, in Pakistan, we know that things have not been static in this organisation rebuilt on the debris of the Taliban's defeat in 2001. The son is probably more amenable to the Arab militants and the Al-Qaeda than the old anti-Soviet warrior.
The network's attitude towards TTP is ambivalent which is better than an outright anti-Pakistan alliance with it. It is one movement that straddles the border and it absorbed the bulk of Pakistani militants that fled General Musharraf's crackdown. If Pakistan's ultimate objective is to recover this particular "lost territory", the better policy option is to strengthen pro-Pakistan elements in the network. An attempt under duress to hack into the Haqqanis with a do or die expeditionary force at this stage of the game can only be counter-productive.
The writer is a former ambassador and foreign secretary of Pakistan.

[Description of Source: Islamabad The News Online in English -- Website of a widely read, influential English daily, member of the Jang publishing group. Neutral editorial policy, good coverage of domestic and international issues. Usually offers leading news and analysis on issues related to war against terrorism. Circulation estimated at 55,000; URL: http://www.thenews.com.pk/]

Pakistan: Tribal Elders Deny Existence of Haqqani Network in North Waziristan
SAP20110718100018 Rawalpindi Nawa-e Waqt in Urdu 18 Jul 11 pp 8, 6
[Unattributed report: No Militant of Haqqani Network Present in North Waziristan: Tribal Elders Assure Governor]
Peshawar -- The elders of North Waziristan have told the Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa governor that the Hakimullah Group of the Pakistan Taliban Movement and Afghan Taliban Commander Jalaluddin Haqqani's network do not exist in the province. This was stated by tribal leader, Maulana Gul Ramzan, to BBC after a jirga [assembly of tribal elders] with Governor Masud Kausar.
Ramzan has said that the jirga told the governor that the local people of North Waziristan would not assist local and foreign militants who are involved in acts of terrorism in Pakistan. The sixteen-member jirga of Wazir and Dawar tribes from North Waziristan held a meeting with the Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa governor on the law and order situation of the area at the Governor House in Peshawar.
Malik Qadir Khan and Malik Mamoor Khan, main leaders of the jirga of North Waziristan, also took part in the meeting. Ramzan has also said that the jirga told the governor that the local Taliban belonging to the Hafiz Gul Bahadur Group are peaceful. He has added that the group has assured that it is ready to provide security if the government wants to launch development work in North Waziristan.

[Description of Source: Rawalpindi Nawa-e Waqt in Urdu -- Privately owned, widely read, conservative Islamic daily, with circulation around 125,000. Harshly critical of the US and India.]



Asia Times: 'More Power to the Haqqani Network'
CPP20110809715035 Hong Kong Asia Times Online in English 0854 GMT 08 Aug 11
[Asia Times Report by Arif Jamal: "More Power to the Haqqani Network"; headline as provided by source]
The Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (Pakistan Taliban - TTP) seems to be slowly disintegrating as various commanders try to pull it in different directions.
A clear indication of this process came when the TTP commander in Kurram Agency, Fazal Saeed Haqqani, announced that his group had seceded from the TTP.
Fazal Saeed Haqqani also announced the formation of a new group called Tehrik-e-Taliban Islami Pakistan (TTIP). Haqqani said his group was not happy with the TTP's policy of attacking civilian targets, a major reason for the split.
However, Haqqani and his group have been involved in the murders of innocent Shi'ites. In the very first statement to dissociate his new group from the TTP, Haqqani announced he would not carry out any attacks on the Pakistani security forces. He also announced that the United States was the TTIP's "main enemy".
The action of Fazal Saeed Haqqani has completely eliminated the TTP from Kurram Agency, as Haqqani vowed that he would not allow the TTP to operate there: "It is my area and I will ensure that no locals or outsiders oppose our policies and create problems for us in Kurram Valley."
Like Maulvi Nazir and Hafiz Gul Bahadur, Fazal Saeed Haqqani is closely allied with the Haqqani network in Afghanistan, which desperately needed a foothold in Kurram Agency and which only Fazal Saeed Haqqani could provide. Jalaluddin Haqqani along with his son Sirajuddin lead the Haqqani network, which is based in the North Waziristan tribal area. It is considered one of the biggest threats to foreign forces in Afghanistan.
According to Mansur Khan Mehsud of the Federally Administered Tribal Areas' research center, Fazal Saeed Haqqani is occupying a portion of the main road, the Thall-Parachinar road, connecting Kurram Agency with the rest of the country. While still a TTP commander, Fazal Saeed Haqqani did not allow Shi'ites residents to use that road.
Consequently, they had to go to Afghanistan first to go to other parts of Pakistan. (1) With Fazal Saeed Haqqani in charge of that road, the Haqqani network and other Taliban militants can use Kurram Agency as their base to carry out attacks inside Afghanistan or to provide sanctuary. (2)
North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) forces in Afghanistan identified the Haqqani network as the group responsible for a brazen attack using nine suicide bombers against Kabul's luxury Intercontinental Hotel on June 28 that killed 20 people, including the suicide bombers.
Shortly afterward, the Haqqani network suffered a major blow when NATO troops and Afghan Special Forces mounted a raid on one of its training camps in Afghanistan's Paktika province. The July 20-22 operation killed more than 50 insurgents in a base said to be used as a staging point for Haqqani network and foreign fighters. A large stockpile of arms was seized in the operation, which NATO sources said was based on intelligence provided by disenchanted insurgents.
Nevertheless, Fazal Saeed Haqqani's rebellion against the TTP has immensely strengthened the Haqqani network while weakening the TTP. According to one report, TTP commander Hakimullah Mehsud has become more and more isolated over the past year. On June 27, he suffered a setback when unknown persons killed Shakirullah Shakir, a spokesman for the Fidayeen-e-Islam (suicide-bombing) wing of the TTP.
Shakirullah was to replace Qari Hussain Mehsud, who was killed in an October 2010 drone strike and was known as Ustad-e-Fidayeen (master - or teacher- of the suicide bombers).
Commander Tariq Afridi's Taliban group in Darra Adamkhel and Khalid Omar's Mohmand group are already operating independently of the TTP. Lashkar-e-Islam in Khyber Agency, led by Mangal Bagh, is pro-army and does not accept TTP patronage.
The TTP breakup is a success for Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence, which has been working for some months to deliver Kurram Agency to the Haqqani network so that it could operate more freely in view of the emerging regional scenario. Dist rust among TTP militants seems to be growing. According to another report, Hakimullah Mehsud and his deputy Waliur Rehman rarely meet; when they do, they do not meet alone and only after making sure neither of them is carrying arms.
Fazal Saeed rebelled against the TTP on the eve of the military operation that started on July 3. Army troops moved into Kurram Agency from the town of Sadda and Tal area in Hangu district, backed by helicopters, tanks and artillery. The aim of the operation was to destroy the militants still loyal to Hakimullah Mehsud.
Although this military operation was ostensibly initiated against the militants, Shi'ite Muslim residents believe it is equally directed against them. A knowledgeable Pakistani columnist, Dr Mohammad Taqi, says that the operation is aimed at opening the Thall-Parachinar road for the Haqqani network and other pro-army jihadi groups.
More importantly, it is aimed at punishing those people in Kurram Agency who have resisted the Haqqani network and the Pakistan army's support for the Taliban.
The balance of power has shifted in favor of the Haqqani network for the first time with Fazal Saeed Haqqani openly on its side. Although several local Shi'ite leaders in upper Kurram vow to fight back, it is safe to say that they are losing the battle, at least for now. (3)
Notes 1. Mansur Khan Mehsud, TTP Divided in Kurram Agency , FATA Research Center, n.d.
2. For the strategic importance of this road for the Pakistan army and the Haqqani Network, see Dr Mohammad Taqi, "Comment: The Sham operation in Kurram," Daily Times, Lahore, July 7. Available here .
3. Telephone interviews with local leaders through research assistant, July 2011.
Arif Jamal is a visiting fellow at the New York University and author of "Shadow War - The Untold Story of Jihad in Kashmir."

[Description of Source: Hong Kong Asia Times Online in English -- Online newspaper focusing on political and economic issues from an "Asian perspective," with over 50 contributors in 17 Asian countries, the United States, and Europe, and a branch office in Bangkok; successor of the Hong Kong/Bangkok-based print daily Asia Times that closed in 1997, it claims an average of 100,000 daily site visitors, with 65% of the audience based in North America, and 22% in the Asia-Pacific region; tends to be critical of the United States; URL: http://www.atimes.com]

AFP: Reported Drone Strike Kills 7 Militants in Pakistan's North Waziristan
SAP20110810012001 Hong Kong AFP in English 2336 GMT 09 Aug 11
[AFP Report: "US Drone Strike Kills Seven Militants in Pakistan"]
MIRANSHAH, Pakistan, Aug 10, 2011 (AFP) - A US drone strike in Pakistan's northwestern tribal belt on Wednesday killed at least seven fighters from the militant Haqqani network, local security officials said.
A US drone fired two missiles, destroying a vehicle and a compound near Miranshah, the main town in North Waziristan tribal district, along the Afghan border. Three other militants were wounded in the strike, the officials said.
"At least seven militants were killed in the drone strike. All of them were Haqqani's men," a Pakistani security official in Miranshah told AFP.
Another security official at Peshawar confirmed the attack and casualties and added that three militants were also wounded.
Washington has called Pakistan's semi-autonomous northwest tribal region the global headquarters of Al-Qaeda, where Taliban and other Al-Qaeda-linked networks need to be defeated if the 10-year war in Afghanistan is ever to end.
The Haqqani network is considered the most dangerous enemy of US troops in eastern Afghanistan. It was founded by Jalaluddin Haqqani and is run by his son, Sirajuddin, both designated "global terrorists" by Washington.

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