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Posts tagged with: War of Terror

Pakistan Terrorism Accountability Act in US Congress – to fine Pakistan $2.2 Billion

US Congress presented the Pakistan Terrorism Accountability Bill 2012 – which aims to block all aid to Pakistan – it is as per the new US rhetoric asking Pakistan to “do more” in terms of the War on Terror – It actually means to push the Pakistani  Government & the Military to allow for more access to our soil for NATO, drones and US military action.

As a sovregin nation I personally would tell the US to shove it … but with goofs like Zardari … we will most likely be acceding to all their demands and be back at the behest as to how the US wants to trample over us all over again.

FIRSTPOST: A Legislation has been introduced in the US Congress that would deduct $50 million from the aid to Islamabad for every American killed by terrorists operating from the safe havens in Pakistan with the ”support” of ISI.

“Pakistan has for decades leveraged radical terrorist groups to carry out attacks in India and Afghanistan,” Congressman Dana Rohrabacher said introducing the ‘Pakistan Terrorism Accountability Act of 2012′.

The Pakistan Terrorism Accountability Act asks the US government to pay the family of each US soldier killed in Pakistan $50 million/soldier for a grand total of $2.2 Billion from the promised aid being given to Pakistan to the soldiers that were killed in Pakistan.

H.R.5734– To provide compensation for the deadly acts by elements of the Pakistani military and intelligence services against United States citizens.

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Stuxnet: Cyber Weapon of Mass Destruction

Stuxnet I’m sure over the past year you may have accidentally stumbled across the word Stuxnet, it is technically a simple computer virus that has started infecting Microsoft Windows computers since July 2010, I too heard some reports of the virus, but as usual shrugged it aside as just another scare, little did I worry any any further until I heard Ralph Langner speak about it at TED 2011 Cracking Stuxnet, a 21st-century cyber weapon. Only recently after reading a blog post by Amit Agarwal who shared an animated documentary on the Stuxnet Virus prepared by ABC1 Australia on Jun 8th 2011, that made me realize the implications of this mere virus to have the devastation power of becoming a Cyber Weapon of Mass Destruction, im not talking sci-fi, this weapon is being used, carried around on hundreds, thousands and millions of USB’s with the potential force of causing a meltdown in any [or possibly a certain series] of nuclear power plant around the globe.

Stuxnet How it spreadsLets start with a brief explanationStuxnet is a Windows worm virus spreading via USB drives once inside an organization, it self propagates by copying itself to network shares and other USB drives for further infection once it infects the system it hides itself with a rootkit and sees if the infected computer is connected to a Siemens Simatic (Step7) factory system and sends particular commands to modify PLC (Programmable Logic Controllers, i.e. the boxes that actually control the machinery) [centrifuges in nuclear power plants]

Take a moment to watch the animated documentary prepared by Australia ABC1 uploaded on Youtube on 8th June 2011
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Pakistan Rangers impart Justice in 10 seconds

Words fail me, after I watched this video of a Sarfaraz Shah being shot down by our paramilitary law enforcement agency imparting justice in a mere ten seconds. Sarfaraz Shah was apparently brought to the Rangers checkpost positioned inside Benazir Bhutto Park across Boat Basin Karachi accused of holding a family hostage. A heated exchange of words between the two, with the alleged culprit pleading for mercy from the angered soldier requesting him to lower his gun – ends up in the soldier shooting two bullets into the abdomen of the victim, leaving him to bleed and ultimately Sarfaraz succumbs to death probably from excessive bleeding a few hours [?] later.

I wonder if Pakistan has been reduced to serving justice in mere 10 seconds. From the initial contact to the bullets being fired it took mere 7-10 seconds. On one hand I can understand the lawlessness prevailing in our country, with thugs roaming free killing people left right and center, it has gone out of hand and one would suggest a stern hand is needed to stop this menace, but such criminality under the watchful eyes of 6-7 military personel is unwarranted and I must hold our law enforcement agencies to a higher standard on the judicial discharge of their weapons, which is indirectly entrusted to them by the state and eventually by the same tax payers who happend to be the citizens of Pakistan.
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Who is The Terrorist?

Guest Blog by Zeeshan Khan

She crouches in a corner of her humble abode
Fear writ large in her light brown eyes
In her heart she cries out to the world,
“How much more will we be terrorized?”

There has to be something about the term ‘Terrorism’ which makes it the most misused term in recent history in my opinion. Whoever feels like it, picks it up, chews it into a thousand particles and spits it out to be then picked up by another and abused likewise.

Many debate and articulate what “terror” means? Can we, with our safety-bubble lifestyles even come close to understanding what it means? You switch to the news everyday, witness scenes of “blood curdling horror” and human limbs scattered on pavements like nonentities. You shake your head in pity then switch the channel to find out who is the latest “American idol”!

Ask the little girl crouched in a corner, palms pressed tight against her ears to muffle out the screams and firing. Ask the young woman who stares defenselessly at the approaching group of bulky men. Ask those people what terror is, who jumped off the World Trade Center on the ill-fated morning of September 11. My point is that without knowing the essence of this all-encompassing term, great powers, intellectual giants and so-called religious bodies alike use it to promote their own vested interests.
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Dr. Aafia Siddiqui’s Trial

Dr. Aafia Siddiqui is on trial this last week in New York on charges of her attempting to kill an FBI officer in Afghanistan. It interesting to note that none of the assault charges are seemingly holding up against her, the M-4 rifle which she allegedly used to fire four shots at the officers has not produced a single finger print of her, while other items presented as evidence in are trial are also not standing up in court. What one must remember that Dr. Aafia Siddiqui was abducted from Karachi and held in some US custody from 2003 for allegedly supporting terrorism, only to re-emerge as a Prisoner 650 charged with assaulting FBI officers in 2008, her trial is not about her terrorism but instead an assault charge made against her in 2008.

Sounds like someone in Pakistan must answer the tough question as to why they felt the need to hand over her and many like her over to the US without a proper investigation and trial ensuring that they were actually guilty of the alleged crime or terrorist activity. Musharraf or for that matter should not have bartered with her life to pick up and let the Americans smuggle her out of Pakistan merely on the basis of a hunch?

A good summary of the progress of the trial can be heard in this short 10-minute interview of Tina Foster, Executive Director of International Justice Network who has been monitoring Dr. Aafia Siddiqi trial in New York on Letters to Washington telecasted on KPFA Washington Radio

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Blackwater ‘IN’ Pakistan – Rehman Malik, Patterson & Clinton all LIED to the People of Pakistan

In an interview with Express News [transcript on DoD], Robert Gates confirmed in some clear terms that private security firms Blackwater and DynCorp are operating inside Pakistan. “They’re operating as individual companies here in Pakistan” – so technically by all counts this statement more or less proves that Anne Patterson, Hilary Clinton and Rehman Malik all have being LYING to the people of Pakistan. Where over the past few months they have one after the other vehemently denied the presence of Blackwater and its operatives in Pakistan. Rehman Malik is on record to quit. In an attempt to soften the blow the US Department of Defense is covering up their statement by that updating reporters that Mr. Gates had been speaking about contractor oversight more generally and that the Pentagon didn’t employ Xe in Pakistan – which we all know is yet another lie, since even Erik Prince, the founder of Blackwater, confessed to his organizations involvement in Pakistan barely a month back in the Vanity Fair article.

I can’t complain much if foreign agents like Anne Patterson and Hilary Clinton lied to our people, as they probably were protecting the interests of their own government, but what irks me is that our own Ministers (& President) knowingly continue to lie to their people literally selling our soul to the highest bidder and yet had the audacity to deny the real facts while our country continued to burn under our noses.
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Open Letter to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton

Feryal GoharYour Excellency,

Allow me to apologize to you for not being able to be present during your address to civil society at the hallowed campus of Government College University in my beloved city of Lahore. Much as I would have wanted to benefit from the wisdom of your analysis and foresight, I could not make the journey quickly enough from the remote town of Chilas where I was in consultation with the proponents of a major dam which shall displace 32,000 people and submerge 32,000 ancient rock carvings if and when built. Allow me to further explain that since flights were cancelled from the nearest airport in Gilgit, a tedious five hour journey on the Karakoram Highway, I was compelled to take the road journey over the Babusar Pass situated at an altitude of 14,000 feet above sea level, travelling a total of eighteen hours to Islamabad.

Your Excellency, it was during this eighteen hour journey through some of the most desolate yet spectacular landscape of my country that I imagined speaking to you, being unable to join the privileged few who were invited to hear you speak both in Lahore and in Islamabad. As the vehicle carrying us made its way carefully over open culverts fashioned by the able engineers of the China Construction Company, as it slid over six inches of freshly falling snow, as it dipped into crevices swirling with glacial melt, and as it glided smoothly over the bits of tarmac which have survived the devastation of the 2005 earthquake which killed 70,000 people in these remote parts, I spoke to you, imagining that you were truly interested in what I, an ordinary citizen of this, my beloved, blighted country had to say.
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US official, Resigns in Protest questioning the American agenda in Afghanistan (& Pakistan)

Matthew Hoh, A former Marine Corps captain stationed in the Zabul province in Afghanistan tendered his resignation to the US Ambassador Nancy Powel, becoming the first U.S. official known to resign in protest over the Afghan war, which he had come to believe simply fueled the insurgency.

I have lost understanding of and confidence in the strategic purposes of the United States’ presence in Afghanistan,” he wrote Sept. 10 in a four-page letter to the department’s head of personnel. “I have doubts and reservations about our current strategy and planned future strategy, but my resignation is based not upon how we are pursuing this war, but why and to what end.
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Double Jeopardy: Arrested Pak students need Justice & Fairness

Pakistani Students arrested in the UKOn 8 April 2009, twelve students mostly Pakistani nationals were arrested at Manchester in a suspicion of terrorism related offences in a rushed police operation ‘Pathway’. At the time of writing this article those detained have been off loaded from ‘terror charges’ to national security considerations on behest of Home Office and are handed over to UK Border Agency. Home office has indicated that they will be removed from UK being a threat to country’s ‘national security’ having maligned in international terrorism. Prime Minister Gordon Brown initially indicated that police have foiled ‘a very big terrorist plot’ Pakistan as a state was subject to a negative media frenzy and individuals and their families were without counsellor access in breach of Art 36 of the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations 1963 and all those detained were on periodical remand until a decision was made not to charge them within 28 days and they had a limited access to basic rights guaranteed by (ECHR) European Convention on Human Rights 1950 as well as country’s Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1925 (s.25) such as free access to their attorneys, contacting their families, medical check up to avoid torture, interpreters, counsellor service access etc.
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Mumbai vs Karachi: is the blame game ever going to end?

Before I begin this rant, I must out-rightly condemn all terrorism activities, be it from a ruthless terrorist in India or even in Pakistan wherever there is loss of life it must be condemned regardless of who is suffering The Mumbai attacks were shocking for everyone, for the three days the killers were on rampage killing over 200 innocent lives everyone specially in India was shaken to the core. While we in Pakistan sat watching in earnest prayer hoping that this bad dream would simply go away, we too are sick an tired of these terrorist and truly do not wish this plague to get worse

What followed soon after the dust settled in Mumbai, was an all out aggressive propaganda waged by the Indian Government against Pakistan trying its best to pin the blame on Pakistan. Generally the accusations were based on some scanty evidence that the bureaucracy could muster up in the short few hours, it was for us, as if the entire book of conspiracies were suddenly cracked open by RAW and brought into quick production simply to exploit this disaster for its own gains, all in an attempt to bring Pakistan on its knees and into Indian submission [being a patriot Pakistani, I assure you that will not happen, Indians would agree vice versa if they were in the same spot] To believe that this highly professional group of terrorist could conduct a fully coordinated attack while leaving a blatant bread crumb trail seems too dubious. A team of terrorists hitchhiking a boat ride from Karachi to land smack in the middle of Mumbai and take the city om a target shooting spree, seems all too James Bond’ish. To have a confession by a person allegedly a Pakistani, is definitely a poorly enacted video, as the accent completely defies all dialects spoken anywhere in Pakistan.
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Wrapped up in million stars this old sky,
As they stare from little windows of existence
From the wooden bridge, in the mountains
As the mist rises in its colors of remembrance,
There lies the valley, where beauty is suicidal
There lies home, where protection is nature
All in there, fleeting glance or permanence
The old days of reflection, spent in between
As they whisper, ode to change and for help
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In-Camera security briefing – Your analysis?

Today at 5pm marks the start of Pakistans third ever in-camera parliamentary briefing on the security situation in Pakistan. It is to be made by the top brass of Pakistan army specifically Director-General of Military Operations, Lt.-General Ahmad Shuja Pasha, who will be presenting the Pakistan Army’s point of view which has been approved by the President Asif Ali Zardari.

While I would be the first to accept that this is a positive step in the right direction to take the Parliamentarians into confidence but I have a few reservations. More along the lines that this is a one-way conversation and the strategy is not open for debate / revision. If this one-way conversation cannot be questioned or modified then I fear it is all hoopla and this session will only serve as a rubber stamp for allowing a free hand to Zardari a license to do as he or Americans desire ‘in the name of war on terror, as approved by the members of Pakistani parliament’. Its sadly has all the hallmarks of the rubber stamping parliament that Musharraf used previously, took them ‘into confidence’ but did everything as he pleased

Overlooking my own reservations, what is your take on this in-camera briefing

….and the US attacks again – killing five in South Waziristan

It is being reported that barely a few hours ago US Army launched yet another US Drones attack on the village of Baghar in South Waziristan near the Afghan border inside Pakistan killing five more people. The US army alleges that this attack was limited on a specific military training camp. But it was after all an attack on the sovereignty of Pakistan, It was only yesterday that Pakistan Army spokesperson Maj Gen Athar Abbas had threatened that if this were to happen yet again it would result in retaliatory fire from Pakistan Army in defense.

It seems any & all diplomatic effort initiated by Asif Ali Zardari is failing as it is on record that since the day of his accession to the throne of the Presidency, the US has upped the ante, and been on the offensive to bomb the northern areas of Pakistan. One does have to suspect that his election into office might have something to do with a free hand accorded to the US in their War OF Terror offensive.

As a Pakistani I fully condemn this attack on Pakistan and expect our Army to stand up and defend out country, no longer should we be willing to annihilate our people at their free will – as a Pakistani citizen its simply unacceptable to me any more