Globally recognised intelligence and forecast STRATFOR has rejected the US Central Intelligence Agency claim that the man killed in Abbottabad’s compound by US Naval SEALs was al-Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden. This was one of the reasons the CIA kept Pakistan’s premier intelligence agency Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) in dark.
The STRATFOR says: “The possibility that bin Laden was already dead and in terms of his impact on terrorist operations, he effectively was. That does not mean, however, that he was not an important ideological leader or that he was not someone the United States sought to capture or kill for his role in carrying out the most devastating terrorist attack in the US history.” In its latest intelligence gathering, the STRATFOR claims that
aggressive US intelligence collection efforts have come to fruition, as killing of Osama bin Laden was perhaps the top symbolic goal for the CIA and all those involved in the US covert operations. Indeed, President Obama said during his speech on May 1 that upon entering the office, he had personally instructed CIA Director Leon Panetta that killing the al-Qaeda leader was his top priority. The logistical challenges of catching a single wanted individual with Bin Laden level of resources were substantial and while 10 years, the United States was able to accomplish the objective it set out to do in October 2001.
Because of bin Laden’s communications limitations, since October 2001 when he fled Tora Bora after the US invasion of Afghanistan, he has been relegated to a largely symbolic and ideological role in al-Qaeda. Accordingly, he issued audiotapes on a little more than a yearly basis, whereas before 2007 he was able to issue videotapes.
The growing infrequency and decreasing quality of his recorded messages was the most notable when al-Qaeda did not release a message marking the anniversary of 9/11 in September 2010 but later followed up with a tape on January 21, 2011.
The bottom line is that from an operational point of view, the threat posed by al-Qaeda – and the wider jihadist movement – is no different operationally after his death.
“The killing of al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden represents possibly the biggest clandestine operations success for the United States since the capture of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in 2003,” it claimed.
The confirmation of his death is an emotional victory for the United States and could have wider effects on the geopolitics of the region, but bin Laden’s death is irrelevant for al-Qaeda and the wider jihadist movement from an operational perspective.
The operation that led to bin Laden’s death at a compound deep in Pakistan is among the most significant operational successes for the US intelligence in the past decade.
An important local source told this scribe: “If it was not the case why all the evidences leading to the confirmation of Laden’s death were eliminated. His was never subjected to postmortem. Neither the DNA was collected nor it was matched.”
Another important source conceded: “How come one of the wives of bin Laden, Hamal, who remained in the custody of Iranian Intelligence and hidden mole of US intelligence community made her way to Abbottabad. Hamal never appeared in public.”
“Hamal has deep US connections. When she traveled from Iran to Pakistan her movements were under watch and the watchers had decided Hamal to end her journey in Abbottabad”, the sources added.
Senior intelligence analysts in Islamabad argue: “A three trillion worth manhunt concluded very discreetly. Dead body of the ‘man killed” by SEALs had no media mention as was done by the US authorities in case of Iraq’s President Saddam.”
After receiving this vital information, this scribe phoned a senior Pakistani journalist in Washington DC early Thursday. He did not rule out latest findings on this subject saying: “Why the CIA was in hurry to remove all possible evidences of the bin Laden’s killing who dominated world politics for over a decade?”
The Washinton-based journalist termed the crash of US Army’s Chinook helicopter and killings of over 36 US Naval SEALs as a part of the effort to finish left over evidence which could lead to facts of May 2 US action in Abbottabad.”
The STRATFOR further states the primary threat is now posed by al-Qaeda franchise which can attempt to stage an attack in the United States or elsewhere in retribution for bin Laden’s death, but they do not have training or capabilities for high-casualty transnational attacks.
Pakistan’s former spymaster Lt Gen (r) Hamid Gul told TheNation they never challenged credence of the STRATFOR. “I agree with the latest intelligence gathering about May 2 operation’s follow up. This remains one of the reasons the CIA never informed its Pakistan counterpart ISI when it decided to kill a fake bin Laden”, he said.
Source: The Nation
|NATO OF THE EAST|
Operation pushes Pakistan closer to forging security ties with China, even India.An unintended consequence of the surgically precise United States military operation that killed Osama bin Laden is that not only Pakistan, but other South and Central Asian countries are looking for ways to protect their sovereignty and security.The implications of the skill and confidence with which the U.S. was able to mount a sixmonth intelligence operation to discover bin Laden’s hideout and then launch a military operation to kill him without the Pakistani government, army or spy agency being any the wiser has caused concern in capitals throughout Asia.There are signs that together with movements already underway as regional governments contemplate what their neighbourhood will look like when the U.S., NATO and other allied forces leave Afghanistan starting this year, the bin Laden operation is accelerating the formation of new alliances.Much of this is under the canopy of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), the mutual defence group founded in 2001 by Russia, China and the Central Asian states of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.The SCO has often been called the region’s post-Soviet Union answer to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. Certainly major motives in the formation of the group and its growth have been China’s perception that it was being encircled and confined by the U.S., and both Beijing and Moscow’s unhappiness about the spreading presence of American bases and influence in Central Asia.In 2005 both India and Pakistan, along with Iran and Mongolia, joined the SCO with junior “observer” status.But it has been widely signalled that at the upcoming SCO summit to be held in the Kazakhstan capital Astana in mid-June both Pakistan and India will gain full membership of the organization.SCO is purposefully a U.S.free zone. Indeed, Washington’s requests for observer status have been rebuffed.
Bin Laden’s death will change nothing for the US until the White House engages India and Pakistan in a regional solution.
administration expects that it will be easier to split the Taliban away from al-Qaida now that Bin Laden is dead. As one unnamed American official, who was recently quoted in the Washington Post, put it: “Bin Laden’s death is the beginning of the endgame in Afghanistan, it changes everything.” Nothing could be farther from the truth.
For nearly a decade, the United States has pursued an unfocused war in Afghanistan based on tactics with seemingly no thought about the wider strategy. The Bush administration wandered into South Asia ill-informed and unwilling to think about the big picture; the Obama White House has sadly failed to provide a comprehensive rethink of the problem, disappointing many diehard Obama supporters.
The talk from the military and administration officials has been about “winning hearts and minds” and “talking to the Taliban” and “reducing kinetic operations”. All of this is well and good, but these taglines and the tactics they refer to are about managing symptoms not fixing the problem. Bin Laden’s death does not rectify the strategic problem.
The decapitation of the al-Qaida leadership may result in the collapse of the organisation – I hope that is the case. But terrorist organisations do not always collapse following such incidents. In this case, the death of Bin Laden should be a step in the right direction, given that the real hammer blows to al-Qaida’s ideology have been dealt by the nascent democracy movements across the Middle East. While much uncertainty remains, most experts see these movements in Egypt, Syria and beyond as a rejection of al-Qaida’s call to violence and extreme interpretations of Islam. Again, I hope they are right.
More importantly, however, the problem of a weak Afghanistan is not caused by Bin Laden, al-Qaida or the Taliban. The Taliban provided order to an Afghanistan plagued by internecine violence following the withdrawal of the Soviet Union and American involvement in 1992. Al-Qaida took advantage of the Taliban rule to use Afghanistan as a base for their global operations.
Afghanistan has always been a highly decentralised state, not easily governed by a central authority. This has not changed. This weakness has led other states to take advantage of Afghanistan. During the cold war, the country became the backdrop for a proxy war between the US and the Soviet Union. But a third player was always in the mix: Pakistan. The US thought that it was using Pakistan to advance the US national interest against the USSR, but Pakistan was working for Islamabad’s interests, not American ones.
Pakistan wanted to settle their border dispute with Afghanistan to Pakistan’s advantage. Furthermore, Pakistan has always viewed Afghanistan as “strategic depth” to be used by the military in a conflict with India. In fact, the Pakistani military and intelligence services actively fomented radical Islamist groups in the last quarter of the 20th century to create a cadre of irregular fighters that could be used in an irregular war against India in Kashmir. Pakistan also backed the rise of the Taliban in the mid 1990s, since they viewed them as a friendly ally. Since the partition of British India in 1947, India and Pakistan have been at odds, and Pakistan still greatly fears India. Whether or not this is a rational view through western eyes is irrelevant. This is the root of the problem – and Bin Laden’s death changes none of it.
In the 2008 US election campaign, Barack Obama spoke about the need for a regional solution to the problem. In office, his administration has failed to pressure India and Pakistan to find common solutions to common problems. Right now, US goals for the region are directly opposed to Islamabad’s goals. The US wants a stable Afghanistan, free of radical Islam. This means India should be involved in Afghanistan. Indian involvement in Afghanistan, however, means that Pakistan would be “surrounded” by “hostile” governments. Elements of the Pakistan military and intelligence will never allow this.
Unless President Obama can work to increase trust, no amount of military tactics or civilian development can change the strategic reality. India does not want to be forced to deal with Islamabad, especially following the Mumbai attacks, but the status quo is simply not tenable. It is not tenable for the US, it is not tenable for India and it is not tenable for Pakistan. The Pakistani polity is imploding: the gap between the Pakistani public and their leaders is wide and deep, not to mention the divisions among the leadership in Islamabad.
It does not matter if the US remains committed to Afghanistan with 100,000 troops or if we withdraw tomorrow; the result – the eventual implosion of Pakistan and chaos across South Asia – will be the same, unless President Obama addresses the imbalance of power and the perception of fear and threat between India and Pakistan.
Source: Michael Williams
“The self-proclaimed supporters of capitalism and democracy … have reached the end of the road and the world is looking forward to a new way, culture and system — a thought that can literally guarantee social and individual happiness of mankind,” Ahmadinejad stated in a ceremony marking Teacher’s Day in Tehran on Wednesday.
Iran’s president highlighted the Islamic Republic’s aptitude to guide the world in its pursuit of perfection. He noted that the enemy’s concerns do not arise from the country’s economic or defense capabilities.
“The only point that concerns them is that the Iranian nation has the capacity and capability to become a role model and a pioneer,” he added.
He recalled how Marxism, despite all the attention it received and promises it made, led to greater oppression than at the time of earlier tyrants.
“Then capitalism took momentum which resulted in poverty, discrimination in more than half of the world, war, massacre and occupation,” he pointed out.
Ahmadinejad did not single out the United States but denounced the September 11 and the events around militant al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden as a plot by superpowers to save themselves.
“They used it as a pretext; they invaded and occupied and told lies before the eyes seven billion people and killed more than a million,” he regretted.
Ahmadinejad said the West has failed to meet its pledge of a utopia replete with freedom, comfort and human values and that poverty and discrimination plagues people even in the so-called bastions of democracy and capitalism.