UPDATE I – Observers have been trying to identify this APC and best guestimates are of a long wheel base US Stryker possibly an M1135 NAB-RV [Nuclear, Biological, Chemical Reconnaissance Vehicle]
UPDATE II – It is possible after observing the wide wheel base that this vehicle is actually a Short Range Ballistic Missle Launcher (upto 300km) resmebles the image here or here, in all likelihood this is not of Pakistan Army as teh color marking were of a muddy brown and the launcher was being transported in a private carrier without protocol and security
In a set of recently published pictures that were taken by me while I was going to Hingol, Baluchistan for a few days of offroading. We happened to come across a transporter parked at a gas station about 2 km west of a small town called Winder some 40km away from Karachi on the RCD Highway (Karachi-Quetta). It was a large privately owned transporter carrying a heavily draped vehicle which seemed like an Armored Personnel Carrier (APC)
The heavily draped cargo had no physical markings except a few on the back with bold letterings “Caution: Inflammable” It seemed to be a military grade Armored Personnel Carrier with a set of 8×8 heavy duty tires. According to some experts on site and even Bilal, a commenter on this blog, this type of an APC is not available in the inventory of the Pakistan Army but is found in use with NATO or US forces. It is my speculation that, had if the Pakistan Army, owned this APC or was transporting this cargo, they would have utilized their abundant brown colored military trailers and not be dependent on private contractors to move these to Quetta or possibly Waziristan
Reporters at France 24 spotted these pictures and had a detailed telephonic discussion with me today which can be read here in detail
It must be remembered that the official position by the United States is that it currently has no ground offensives underway in Pakistan and is at best giving other supportive measures for the War on Terror in Pakistan; even the President of Pakistan Asif Ali Zardari is on record this week to have resisted and refused Obama’s suggestion to deploy troops in Pakistan. All these speculative conjectures come after we have heard repeated reports that over 1000 marines were brought into Pakistan to protect the “US Embassy” and at the same time a huge controversy surrounds the covert CIA operatives called Blackwater is found roaming with great immunity on the streets of Pakistan
It is quite possible that this APC is being delivered to support the Pakistan Army in its offensive in Waziristan, but I actually fear far worse of a scenario, then what the Pakistan and the US Government might choose to share publicly. A long history of covert offensives have plagued this War on Terror, the drone attacks in Swat from 2007 were publicly denied for 2 years until recently some responsibility has been taken by the American forces, likewise, the buildup of 1000 officially declared Marines in Islamabad declared only after a media watchdog spilled the beans.
It is my fear that the US Army is actively engaged in running even the military affairs of this War on Terror, keeping Pakistan Army at the front-end, exposing our jawans to take to the hills and suffer the consequences of military casualties, while the American manipulators give orders and commands from secured compounds
I am sick and tired of this cat and mouse game, if we are to come to a possible solution to this War on Terror, it can only be possible if all concerned parties come clean and join forces with the civilian leadership to negotiate a peaceful resolution, military offensive alone will not solve this crisis unless a simultaneous and a deliberate effort is launched to constantly engage in trying to drag the saner elements to the negotiations table and possible edge towards a peaceful resolution.
The world stands witness to the ruthlessness of the IRA and after years of many stop-n-go peace accords did we see daylight of peace in Ireland, why cant we replicate the same here in Pakistan. I assure you not everyone is a crazed suicide bomber, they are all humans, but probably need to be treated with dignity and respect first so that we can attempt to understand their demands, bombarding them to smithereens will only alienate them further, pushing them into even more militarization which is already proving to be a disaster for us here in Pakistan
UPDATE: Following the suggestion of Abdullah Saad on twitter this is quite possibly a US Stryker IAV vehicle and more specifically an M1135 NBC-RV [Nuclear, Chemical, Biologocial ReconnaissanceVehicle] which can accomodate 11 people [2 crew + 9 personnel] this vehicle photographed is a longer wheel base version and the extension can possible add a couple more seat for more personnel, since I am not a military expert I could be wrong in many of my assumption and will stand corrected if proven inaccurate in any technical specifications.
An eye opener for us all, someone has really upped the threat level in how to tackle the insurgence in Pakistan, I only wish that the war on terror would come clean and stop living in a state of denial