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Archive for March 4th, 2017

TO ROOT OUT TERRORISM, UPROOT ITS NETWORK CONTROLLED BY FOREIGN AGENCIES By Commodore Tariq Majeed PN (Retd)

Note by Commodore Tariq Majeed PN (Retd):

This Awareness Brief was sent in printed form to concerned Civil, Military, and Police
Authorities 2 years ago, on 14 February 2015. Please give it serious attention. The
step It emphasizes has to be taken now to uproot the ongoing entrenched terrorism.

TO ROOT OUT TERRORISM, UPROOT ITS NETWORK CONTROLLED BY FOREIGN AGENCIES

By

Commodore Tariq Majeed PN (Retd)

Why the Anti-Terror Measures have Failed
1.      After the savage attack by the terrorist brutes on the Army Public School in Peshawar on 16 December 2014, the nation as a whole cried out for protection against Terrorism. The civil and military authorities rushed to proclaim that they would take the most stringent measures to wipe out terrorism and that security would be tightened and made foolproof. Their repeated assertions to wipe out Terrorism seemed solemn. But would they succeed?
2.      People are very worried and fearful. They have been victims of dreadful terrorism for fourteen years now, and have seen all the measures taken by the civil and military authorities fail in wiping out Terrorism. The new measures designated as the National Action Plan (NAP) cannot succeed either. The reason is of a fundamental nature and is central to the ongoing Terrorism.
Terror Network of Foreign Agencies
3.      There exists in Pakistan an extensive network of foreign spy agencies which is creating, sustaining and directing all Terrorism. This Network has to be uprooted in order to root out Terrorism. There is no other way. But, this measure is missing from the NAP, as it was missing from the previous set of measures.
The Purpose of this Submission
4.     To identify this Network and to emphasize why it is absolutely essential to rid our Country of this rogue Network is the purpose of this submission, which is addressed mainly to the Country’s top defenders and policymakers.
The 9/11 Attacks and the Ongoing Terrorism
5.      Pakistan did experience incidents of terrorism in the 1980s during the Soviet-Afghan War.  But the current wave of Terrorism
originated with the 9/11 Air Attacks in the US. Those Attacks, now confirmed that they originated from within the US, were planned and executed with military precision and had political aims. The same features can be seen in the acts of Terrorism since 9/11.
Terrorists’ Obvious Capabilities
6.      The authorities evidently know much more than the public does about the characteristics and capabilities of the Terrorists. What thoughtful Pakistanis know from the news and the actual terror attacks reveals many of their characteristics.
7.      The terrorists are highly organized and trained in their destructive skills. For their ceaseless acts of terrorism and sabotage, they have vast supplies of resources: bombs, arms and ammunition, grenades, IEDs, rockets, electronic gadgets, satellite communication access, transportation facility, abundant money and manpower including female suicide bombers, intelligence and inside information on selected targets, help from local sources, safe houses to hide, and supporting publicity in Media.
False Image given to Terrorists
8.      These features are proof enough that there is a command organization behind the Terrorists. Yet the official quarters and the Media have created a false impression that the Terrorists are operating independently. This has misled and confused many people including politicians and officials, and analysts, dealing with Terrorism. On the other hand, this false impression has benefited the Terrorists and boosted their deceitful jihadist guise.
Top Authorities know about the Network
9.      The top civil and military authorities know about the rogue Network and the powers behind it. It is kept concealed from the public, except that ‘once in a blue moon’ it is said, “India is behind unrest in Pakistan,” (first headline in the Nation, 24 August 2013).
10.    In a rare case of disclosure of classified material, the Nation, 12 February 2010, carried a report about the threat to Pakistan by a joint axis of United States, India, and Israel. The lengthy report, “Secret Document Reveals Indian Subversion in Pakistan,” spoke more about the Indian “spy network and subversive operations” but also specifically identified the trio of spy agencies. Leaving aside some details, the essential message of the report, which quotes “well-placed sources”— most likely the ISI— is as follows: 
“Indian RAW’s Team CIT-X had been assigned to conduct subversive operations targeting Pakistan. The CIT-X was working relentlessly to destabilize Pakistan while New Delhi stepped up interaction with Islamabad on the diplomatic channels.
          “These plans came to light once a copy of the classified document detailing these activities was accidentally lost and became available for public scrutiny. The document lays out the extensive espionage network dovetailed into the diplomatic missions in Central Asia, Afghanistan, and the Middle East, which the Indian undercover intelligence operatives utilize to rake trouble not only in FATA but in Pakistani hinterland as well.
“Mossad’s tactics of infiltrating Palestinian resistance acted as a model
and provided the modus operandi for CIT-X to stir insurgency on Pakistan’s Western border. Targeting interior regions of Sindh province, Seraiki-belt and the Northern Areas of Pakistan forms pivots of the Indian plan.

The document of  RAW  revealed CIT-X operations which spells out the Mossad/RAW/CIA plot against Pakistan.

“Sources believed that UAE is being used as a launching pad for terrorist activities in Pakistan. Agents are getting hold of young, disgruntled elements and after carrying out their proper brainwashing, they are dispatched to Dubai. Indian Consulate in Dubai is issuing temporary passports to these activists for getting training. After completion of their formal training, they are launched into Pakistan to carry out terrorist activities. RAW and MOSSAD had conceived the ‘offensive’ a year ago. Modus operandi has been successful.
“CIT-X is effectively training agents for covert operations in Pakistan. Under the Vajpayee government, the CIT-X and other sensitive organizations were authorized to strengthen contacts with sleeping agents and recruit new front men to carry out covert operations in Pakistan.

 “This intelligence model is an improvement on the practices of Mossad which has infiltrated several Jewish agents into the occupied territory of Palestine as Muslims. These agents practice Islam like any normal Muslim. They mingle into local Muslim population just to wait for the appropriate time to strike.

      “The hostile intelligence operatives are making concerted attempts to achieve their aim of destabilizing Pakistan through a well-conceived plan. It needs to be countered utilizing all means available at our disposal. “Analysts say that Pakistan should think twice before initiating dialogue with India due to New Delhi‘s dangerous track record.”
  
Trilateral Terror Network and its Aim
11.    Does this report not throw ample light on the Organized  Terrorism, that is devastating our Country?  It does. It directly points to the Terrorism’s Organizers—the Trilateral Network of CIA, Mossad, and RAW. It asserts that their Aim is “destabilizing Pakistan through a well-conceived plan.”
12.    ‘Destabilisation’ means: weakening, disruption, subversion, undermining, dislocation.”  It is carried out by many methods, machinations, and instruments. Among the multitude of methods being used against Pakistan, ruthless Terrorism of multifarious forms stands out as the most destabilizing method.   Planned, persistent, unchecked destabilization of a country is bound to result in its collapse. There should be no doubt in the minds of Pakistan’s patriotic defenders and policymakers that this is the goal of the rogue Trilateral Axis of powers regarding Pakistan.
Root Cause of Terrorism—Not Addressed in NAP
13.    Yet, there is no mention in the NAP of eradicating or checking this Root Cause of Terrorism! How could the architects of the National Action Plan, who advised the Parliament Committees and the Government, have missed it?
CIA’s Terror Network
14.    The other authoritative source that points to the terror network in Pakistan is the Abbottabad Commission, which was set up to investigate the US commando raid in Abbottabad on 2 May 2011. Its composition indicates its high status.
 
President:    
   Justice Javed Iqbal, Senior Most Judge of the Supreme Court  
Members:
   1. Abbas Mohammad Khan, Retired Inspector General Police
   2. Ashraf Jehangir Qazi, Retired Ambassador, Director
       General, Institute of Strategic Studies, Islamabad
   3. Lieutenant General (Retd) Nadeem Ahmad
15.The Commission’s report was published by the Aljazeera Channel at www.aljazeera.com/indepth/spotlight/binladenfiles on 8 July 2013. Its important points appeared in Dawn 10 July 2013.    The report’s flaws aside, it contains many facts and comments which are of vital importance to Pakistan’s security. However, what is reproduced here is about CIA’s Network in Pakistan:
 
a.  Dismantling the Terror Networks.    “The dismantling of CIA, other foreign intelligence, and militant  networks must be treated as an urgent national priority if the country is to regain sovereignty over its own territory.”
                                                                                      (page  332,  paragraph 786)
b.  CIA’s Undercover Presence in Pakistan. “The Defence Secretary told the Commission that the CIA’s undercover officials had been operating in Pakistan since a long time…The CIA operated in diverse ways including cultivation of human resources, using Contractors, NGOs, Multinational Companies, USAID programs, intelligence personnel in the guise of Diplomats, etc. CIA’s Human  Resources were supplemented by Technical Intelligence.”                                                      (page 221, paragraph 531)
 
c.  Safe Houses.   “The Commission noted that the Americans had reportedly rented 389 houses in Islamabad and asked if there was any policy in place with regard to such matters including the entry and exit of aliens. The Interior Secretary said the visa policy was liberalized for trade and investment in 2000 and was again reviewed and updated in 2006 with the approval of the Prime Minister.”                       (page 237, paragraph 572)
      “With regard to the US Embassy hiring hundreds of houses in Islamabad and the suspicious activities of their US residents, the Foreign Minister said this was a matter of serious concern and that a comprehensive approach was required involving all relevant agencies and departments to address it and other such like issues. The problem was that the previous administration had been flexible with the sovereignty of the country vis-à-vis the US and once such flexibility was displayed, the ability of succeeding governments to reverse the situation is compromised.”                     (page 234, paragraph 564)
 
d.    Unchecked Grant of Visas by Ambassador Haqqani. “It was widely reported that Ambassador Haqqani had abused his authority in order to issue a large number of visas to US officials without proper security clearance.This enabled the CIA to develop a major spy network inside Pakistan  comprising US personnel, US personnel of Pakistani origin and Pakistani nationals.”                                          (page 214, paragraph 516)
   [Unbridled grant of visas]…“ resulted in an alarming increase in the presence of CIA agents in Pakistan, who established foreign spy networks… (page 217, paragraph 520)
“Mr. Haqqani is answerable for his role, but the primary responsibility for aiding and abetting the establishment of a nationwide CIA network in Pakistan whose purpose was to subvert the sovereign independence of the country…lay with Mr. Haqqani’s principals.  Mr. Haqqani directly reported to them, bypassing his proper reporting channel which was Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The political leadership was grossly irresponsible to deliberately sideline its own Foreign Office and Foreign Minister on such a delicate security issue. (page 217, paragraph 522) 
Alarming Situation
16.    The evidence of CIA’s nationwide subversive Network in Pakistan brings us face to face with a very alarming situation. The Commission rightly warned that it be dismantled urgently. There is no evidence of any efforts toward this end. Terrorists continue to operate with impunity. The rogue Network remains strong and is advancing toward its political goal.
People Suffering under Intensely Traumatic Conditions
17.    Pakistani People, although endowed by nature with courage and toughness, have been forced to live, for many years now, in a state of fear and acute anxiety. Thousands have lost their near and dear ones. Many are suffering from severe mental and physical stress, and a sense of helplessness.
18.    Terrorism’s dreadful effects and fears and Government’s ill-advised and thoughtless measures in the name of “security” have drastically disrupted the daily life of the people. This situation is crippling the performance of the people and the work of the government at every level. The Civil and Military Authorities ought to be well aware of the dangerous consequences of this crippling state of affairs. It has to be halted as a matter of urgency.
Dismantling the Terror Network—Essential for Country’s Survival
19.    Dismantling the CIA/Mossad/Raw Network, that is using devastating Terrorism with the aim of breaking up this Country, will be a difficult task, with a heavy cost. But it has to be undertaken and accomplished, no matter what the cost. Strong Will and Wisdom in the Country’s top Defenders and Policymakers shall, Insha-Allah, ensure success.
             

“Then, when you have taken a decision, put your trust in Allah,

 for Allah loves those who put  their trust  (in Him).”         (3:159)

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Saudi Arabia Is Redefining Islam for the World’s Largest Muslim Nation by Krithika Varagur/Mar 2, 2017

King Salman’s historic visit to Indonesia is the culmination of a long campaign for influence.

When Saudi Arabia’s King Salman landed in Indonesia on Wednesday, he became the first Saudi monarch to visit the world’s largest Muslim-majority country since 1970. Officials in Jakarta had hoped the visit would help them strengthen business ties and secure $25 billion in resource investments. That’s largely been a bust—as of Thursday, the kingdom has agreed to just one new deal, for a relatively paltry $1 billion.
But Saudi Arabia has, for decades, been making investments of a different sort—those aimed at influencing Indonesian culture and religion. The king’s current visit is the apex of that methodical campaign, and “has the potential to accelerate the expansion of Saudi Arabia’s cultural resources in Indonesia,” according to Chris Chaplin, a researcher at the Royal Netherlands Institute of Southeast Asia. “In fact, given the size of his entourage, I wouldn’t be surprised if there will be a flurry of networking activity amongst Indonesian alumni of Saudi universities.”
Since 1980, Saudi Arabia has devoted millions of dollars to exporting its strict brand of Islam, Salafism, to historically tolerant and diverse IndonesiaIt has built more than 150 mosques (albeit in a country that has about800,000), a huge free university in Jakarta, and several Arabic language institutes; supplied more than 100 boarding schools with books and teachers (albeit in a country estimated to have between 13,000 and 30,000 boarding schools); brought in preachers and teachers; and disbursed thousands of scholarships for graduate study in Saudi Arabia. All this adds up to a deep network of Saudi influence.
“The advent of Salafism in Indonesia is part of Saudi Arabia’s global project to spread its brand of Islam throughout the Muslim world,” said Din Wahid, an expert on Indonesian Salafism at Syarif Hidayatullah State Islamic University (UIN) in Jakarta.
Salaf is Arabic for “forebear,” and Salafism is a Sunni movement that advocates a return to the Islamic traditions of the Prophet Muhammad(PBUH) and his contemporaries. It arose in reaction to 18th-century European colonialism in the Middle East, but it took particular root in Saudi Arabia in the hands of the influential preacher Muhammad ibn Abd al-Wahhab. Al-Wahab’s alliance with the House of Saud in 1744 cemented Wahhabism as the spiritual backbone of the Saudi Arabian state. And in the 20th century, Saudi Arabia, which had become fabulously oil-rich, started to invest its considerable resources in propagating its ideology abroad.
The heart of Indonesian Salafism is the Institute for the Study of Islam and Arabic (LIPIA), a completely Saudi-funded university in South Jakarta whose campus was abuzz the day before the king’s visit.
“It’s really great that our two countries are becoming closer,” said one student who, like most of the other male students at LIPIA, had a wispy beard and wore cropped pants, per hadith verses stating that covering one’s ankles connotes arrogance. “I’ve been reading all the news about the royal visit. I hope to further my own studies in Saudi Arabia, God willing.”
LIPIA’s doors opened in 1980. Its ostensible purpose is to spread the Arabic language, and there’s not a word of the country’s official language, Bahasa Indonesia, on its campus—not a bathroom sign, not a library book. Tuition at LIPIA is free for all its 3,500 students. Music is considered bid’ah, an unnecessary innovation, and is prohibited, along with television and loud laughter. Men and women do not interact; classes of male students attend live lectures on one floor while female students watch the same lecture, live-streamed, on a separate floor.
Indonesia’s Ministry of Religious Affairs accredited LIPIA in 2015, which bodes well for the university’s push to open four more branches across the archipelago. Hammed al-Sultan, head of LIPIA’s Arabic language department, was confident that the satellite campuses would open by the fall of this year. But they will need their own green lights from the ministry, which has voiced concerns about whether they will uphold moderate Islam and Indonesia’s state philosophy of Pancasila, which enshrines religious tolerance.
When I asked whether LIPIA Jakarta already does this, al-Sultan said, “Pancasila … sorry, what is that again?” An LIPIA representative acting as our translator quickly briefed him on it. Al-Sultan said, “Yes, our integration of Pancasila is in progress since it was a requirement for our accreditation two years ago.”
Muhammad Adlin Sila of the Ministry of Religious Affairs was more frank.“We are concerned about some alumni from LIPIA who are big fans of khilafah [the caliphate of the Islamic State].”
Ulil-Abshar Abdalla, a LIPIA alumnus who now runs the Liberal Islam Network, said he found the university’s theological climate oppressive when he attended in the early 1990s. “Theology, which is a mandatory subject there, is only taught by committed Wahhabis, and I really think their ideology is antithetical to traditional Indonesian Islam, which is usually syncretic and relaxed,” he explained.
“Wahhabi, Wahhabi, Wahhabi… people love to throw around this term without knowing what it means!”
BeyondLIPIA, hundreds of Indonesians receive scholarships to study at Saudi universities every year. A few decades in, alumni of these programs are becoming nationally influential in their home country. Habib Rizieq, the founder of the Islamic Defenders Front, a hardline organization associated with religion-related violence, attended both LIPIA and King Saud University in Riyadh. Jafar Umar Thalib, who founded the militant Salafi group Laskar Jihad, also graduated from LIPIA. Right-wing Islamist leaders like Hidayat Nur Wahid, a member of parliament who earned three degrees on scholarship from the University of Medina, are prominent in mainstream politics.
LIPIA alumni have also set up pesantren, or Islamic boarding schools, across Indonesia. Many of the country’s 100-odd Salafi pesantren are supplied by Saudi Arabia with teachers, especially in the Arabic language, and textbooks, according to Din Wahid. For many poor families, these pesantren are the only feasible option for their kids’ schooling, despite ideological quibbles, Wahid said.
Enterprising Saudi envoys have even made inroads in places like Aceh, the westernmost Indonesian province that’s been wracked by natural disasters like the 2005 tsunami. “We have built mosques, hospitals, and schools there,” the Saudi ambassador to Indonesia, Mohammad Abdullah Alshuaibi, told me. “And an Arabic language institute.”
One reason Indonesia has been reluctant to push back on Saudi cultural advances is the all-important hajj quota, the number of citizens who can make the pilgrimage to Mecca in a given year. Indonesia gets the largest allowance in the world:221,000 this year. But decade-long hajj waiting lists are common in many provinces, and jeopardizing the national allowance could provoke a huge backlash, said Dadi Darmadi, a UIN researcher, and hajj expert.
“That being said, the Indonesian government has to be wiser and stop considering the hajj quota as a political gambit to attract more populist support in this country,” Darmadi said.
Nearly every Indonesian leader, from the president to the foreign minister to the Speaker of the House, has cited the hajj quota as an important focus of King Salman’s trip.
The first big policy objective announced for the visit, however, addressed not the hajj, but terrorism. A “pact to combat terrorism” will be the “centerpiece” of agreements signed in Indonesia this week, the Saudi ambassador, Alshuaibitold reporterson Tuesday.
“We need King Salman to make a clear and bold statement denouncing radicalism.”
It’s ironic, then, that some of Indonesia’s leading jihadists have passed through Saudi institutions. Although Salafism is largely “quietist,” or discouraging of political activity, there is a growing faction of Salafi jihadists in Indonesia, according to Din Wahid. In 1972, Saudi money helped to found the “ivy league” of jihadist pesantren, the Al-Mukmin school in Ngruki, Central Java. The Indonesian terrorist group Jemaah Islamiyah received funding from Saudi charities in theearly 2000s.Salafi TV, YouTube channels, Facebook groups, and Telegram channels have become a fertile ground for female extremists and ISIS sympathizers in Indonesia in the last few years, according to a2017 reportfrom the Institute of Policy Analysis and Conflict (IPAC).
“We’ve been seeing some evidence of the transition from Salafism to extremism among female extremists of the ISIS generation,” said Nava Nuraniyah, an IPAC researcher. “On the other hand, though, Salafi ulama [scholars] in Indonesia are among the most vocal opponents of extremism,” she said, suggesting that Salafism acts as a bridge to extremism for some even as it acts as a deterrent for others.
Saudi Arabia has long pushed the notion that its rigorous, state-sanctioned version of Islam is actually a bulwark against violent extremism, and has partnered with countries like the United States to fight terrorist groups from al-Qaeda to ISIS. But as Indonesia’s recent history shows, the distinction between Salafism and jihadism is not clear-cut.
“We need King Salman to make a clear and bold statement denouncing radicalism,” said Yahya Cholil Staquf of the moderate Muslim organization Nahdlatul Ulama. Otherwise, he said, “His visit will be easily perceived as more support to radical Islamic movements in Indonesia, as it is already a common public understanding that those radical movements take theological reference from Saudi Wahhabism and have been enjoying various kinds of support from Saudi Arabia.”
The Saudi ambassador, for his part, thinks such fears about the ideological impact of Saudi investment are off-base. “Wahhabi, Wahhabi, Wahhabi… people love to throw around this term without knowing what it means!” Alshuaibi told me. “They make baseless accusations. It is crazy!”
And some Indonesian leaders remain cautiously optimistic about closer ties with Saudi Arabia. “The two countries face the same challenge of rising radicalism and intolerance, so cooperation in those areas will be beneficial,” Yenny Wahid, a moderate Muslim activist, toldReuters.
Indonesia may be the largest stage for Saudi Arabia’s cultural diplomacy, but it’s hardly the only one. Saudi Arabia builtsatellite campusesfor Egypt’s Al-Azhar university in the 1980s, funded Bosnianrebelsand later built themschools in the 1990s, bankrollednumerous madrassasin pre-Taliban Pakistan and Afghanistan, and sent 25,000 clerics to India between2011 and 2013. Al-Hattem, of LIPIA Jakarta, was previously stationed at Saudi outfits in Bosnia and Djibouti.
Observers have commented that the scales of power seem to be shifting in the Indonesia-Saudi relationship so that the former is now theoretically in a better position to resist unwanted expansion than it was in the early years of its republic.
“Our economic condition now is very different, almost reversed, since the last Saudi visit,” said Luthfi Assyanukie, a liberal Muslim academic. “I think we can utilize that to prudently regulate Saudi investments.” Sila, from the Ministry of Religious Affairs, said, “I think the Saudi government needs Indonesia more now than vice versa, not least in terms of the revenue from hajj pilgrims.”
As Saudi Arabia’s economy fluctuates and it enforcesausterity measuresat home, will it ramp up its global efforts or scale them back? It may not matter.
“Salafi pesantren, and Saudi-inspired religious education in general, no longer necessarily rely on Saudi donations, as followers have become incredibly adept at raising money locally,” Chaplin said.
As the rise of hardliners, the Arabic language, and Salafi jihadist cells in Indonesia show, Salafism has some undeniable, durable appeal here. In Indonesia, at least, Saudi Arabia is already seeing the fruits of its labor. This new religious ecosystem may be self-sustaining.
Reporting for this piece was supported by a grant from the Pulitzer Center for Crisis Reporting

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