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Posts Tagged Indian Army-Taliban Cooporation

Fazlullah helps India in feeding terrorism in Pakistan

Fazlullah helps India in feeding terrorism in Pakistan

 

Asif Haroon Raja

 

Maulana Fazlullah is son-in-law of Maulana Sufi Muhammad who had founded Tehrik-e-Nifaz-e-Shariat-e-Muhammadi (TNSM), which was banned by Pakistan government. He belongs to Babukarkhel clan of Yusafzai tribe of Swat district. On January 12, 2002, he became the leader of TNSM since Sufi had been put behind bars. In 2006, he started broadcasting his fiery speeches twice a day in Swat Valley, preaching virtue and exhorting the people to abstain from vices. While condemning western systems, he stated that imposition of Islamic laws was the sole cure for all the evils in the society. As his audience grew in size, he started taking practical action against so-called evil doers by torching electronic and video shops arguing that dance and music were major sins. His armed men threatened barbers not to shave beards and were forced to close their shops. Mujras and singing were disallowed.

He opposed anti-polio drive in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa saying that it was western conspiracy to make Muslims impotent. He barred women from taking part in education and imposed ban on female education in Swat district. Some 400 schools enrolling 4000 girls were shut down and 170 schools were blown up or burnt. He had also ordered death of Malala Yusafzai simply because she spoke in favor of education of girls. She was shot at from a point blank range on October 9, 2012 but she miraculously survived.  

 

Once Fazlullah gained popularity and earned the nickname of ‘Mullah Radio’, he urged the people to donate money and help him in introducing Islamic system so that they could get speedy and cheap justice. Gullible women donated their jewelry. He also started collecting money through extortion and kidnapping for ransom to strengthen his financial position. From the ill-gotten wealth he collected, he constructed a Madrassa in Mingora worth Rs 25 crores, which became his base of operation and he used it for the purpose of training terrorists. He also opened training centres for preparing teenage boys as suicide bombers. Siege of Lal Masjid in Islamabad in July 2007 and its tragic ending propelled Fazlullah to forge an alliance with Baitullah Mehsud to consolidate his hold over Swat.     

 

By mid 2007, Fazlullah was able to organize a 500 strong force to terrorize the people of Swat. He established a parallel government in 59 villages of Swat where Qazi courts functioned to enforce Shariah laws. He virtually made Swat into a State within a State. Police stations and Frontier Constabulary posts were frequently attacked. On November 3, 2007, 220 paramilitary soldiers and policemen deserted after a FC post and two police stations were overrun by Fazlullah’s militants. Worsening law and order situation impelled Musharraf government to order a military operation in Swat in November 2007 and restore order. Fazlullah hid himself and resurfaced after the Army withdrew. He once again restarted his anti-State activities and unleashed a reign of terror on the people of Swat and surrounding districts including Shangla, Upper Dir and Malakand. Indian and Afghan intelligence agencies kept pumping in weapons, ammunition, equipment and cash in huge quantity to enable Fazlullah to convert Swat into a formidable strong point.

 

During his black reign of terror from 2007 till April 2009, slaughter of captives, beheadings in public, floggings, kidnapping for ransom and suicide bombings became a norm. Green Square in Mingora earned the name of ‘Khooni Chowk’, where slaughtered or bullet ridden dead bodies were hung upside down almost every day. Fazlullah would demand from every family in Swat to hand over one young boy to join TNSM and one girl for marriage with a Taliban. He undertook barbaric acts to be able to impose his brand of hard-line Shariah on others.    

 

After the second military operation in Swat in last quarter of 2008, peace deal was signed with Maulana Sufi and Fazlullah in February 2009. KP government agreed to introduce Nizam-e-Adal in Malakand District and the other side agreed to renounce violence. Hardly had the ink dried on the agreement when Fazllulah’s men opened new fronts in Buner and Lower Dir, which raised alarm bells that militants were working their way towards Islamabad. All political forces got together and passed a joint resolution to combat the militant threat with full force. It led to launching of military operation codenamed Rah-e-Rast on April 26, 2009.

 

By April 28, Lower Dir was retaken and Buner on May 5. By May 14, the attacking troops were 6 km south of Mingora. Battle of Mingora started on May 23 which ensued heavy fighting but by 27th 70% of the city was cleared and by 30th the whole of it. On 14 June, the entire Swat Valley was cleared of the presence of militants and the Army regained control over Swat. Well over 2000 militants were captured and handed over to the police for trials. It was unfortunate that none was convicted and punished. Released militants once again took to militancy. 1.7 million people displaced from Swat and nearby districts returned by August 22. OnJuly 10, BBC reported that Fazlullah was critically injured and was near death bed. In November 2009, he told BBC service that he had escaped to Kunar and vowed to continue fighting Pak Army.

 

Afghan National Directorate of Security and RAW helped Fazlullah and his men to settle down in Kunar and Nuristan and provided all sorts of facilities to enable him to launch cross border attacks. By April 2011, he started sending his militants into Pakistan who attacked targets in Bajaur, Mehmand and Dir in their bid to clear their way to re-enter Swat through Dir. Subsequently, targets in Chitral were also hit. Despite Pakistan’s strong protests, Afghanistan took no measure to bridle Fazlullah and other absconding militant leaders like Faqir Muhammad and Khalid Khurasani who had fled from Bajaur and Mehmand Agencies respectively. Perforce GHQ had to deploy regular troops in Bajaur, Mehmand and Chitral to counter the threat. NATO helicopters came to the rescue of Fazlullah’s men on the night of November 26, 2011 when the infiltrators were fired upon by military post at Salala. On June 22, 2013, his militants kidnapped 17 soldiers and beheaded them. Fazlullah proudly claimed that his men had killed Maj Gen Sanaullah Niazi and two others on September 2013 at a time when environments were getting ripe to begin peace talks.      

 

Appointment of absconding Fazlullah as new Ameer and his deputy Khalid Haqqani from Swabi, both not in favor of peace has strengthened the group of hardliners in TTP, which is to the advantage of India, Afghanistan and USA. Fazlullah with a criminal background will help India in feeding terrorism in Pakistan. As long as Fazlullah remains at the helms of affairs of TTP, hope of peace talks is a pipedream.                

 

The writer is a retired Brig and a defence analyst. asifharoonraja@gmail.com

 

Additional Reading:

Tehrik-e Taliban Pakistan (TTP)
 

Tehrik-e Taliban Pakistan (TTP) is an alliance of militant groups in Pakistan formed in 2007 to unify groups fighting against the Pakistani military in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. TTP leaders also hope to impose a strict interpretation of Qur‘anic instruction throughout Pakistan and to expel Coalition troops from Afghanistan. TTP maintains close ties to senior al-Qa‘ida leaders, including al-Qa‘ida’s former head of operations in Pakistan.

Baitullah Mahsud, the first TTP leader, was killed in an explosion on 5 August 2009 and was succeeded by Hakimullah Mahsud, who vowed to deploy suicide operatives to the United States. The group has repeatedly threatened to attack the US homeland, and a TTP spokesman claimed responsibility for the failed vehicle bomb attack in Times Square in New York City on 1 May 2010. In June 2011, a spokesman vowed to attack the United States and Europe in revenge for the death of Usama Bin Ladin.

Islamabad has blamed TTP for most of the terrorist attacks in Pakistan since the group was founded, including the assassination of former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto in December 2007. TTP in 2011 claimed responsibility for a number of attacks in Pakistan in the aftermath of Bin Ladin’s death—including a bombing of a Frontier Constabulary training center, an assault on a Pakistani naval base in Karachi, a bombing of a Criminal Investigation division building in Peshawar, and a bombing of a police station. TTP claimed each attack was in retaliation for Bin Ladin’s death.

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John Boone, Islamabad, The Observer: ‘Malala survived – that is a big defeat. Now they want to kill many Malalas.’ Ghanizada @Khamaa.com: Indian Consulates in Afghanistan Infiltrating Taliban Militants into Khyber Paktunkhwa

India is behind the insurgency in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Indian Consulate in Jalalabad and Indian Army are arming and training terrorists exported to Pakistan, as Taliban militants. While, Zardari is enjoying wine and women in Bilawal House.
 
As the Pakistani schoolgirl leaves hospital in Britain, extremists continue their murderous campaign by turning their guns on health workers and teachers. Pakistan Army has to destroy militancy from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, even it uses non-conventional methods. 
Naila ul Hadi
After Naila ul-Hadi begged for her son to be spared, one gunman threw him out of the vehicle in an apparent act of mercy – she was killed

For the teachers and health workers serving the village of Sher Afzal Banda, there were few things more mundane than their daily return journey to work.

Every morning a cramped Suzuki minibus owned by the charity Support With Working Solutions (SWWS) would collect them from the junction on a main road and drive them down the rough country track, just wide enough for a single vehicle. In the late afternoon it would bring them back.

“She never thought she was running a risk,” said Zain ul-Hadi, the husband of Naila, a 28-year-old who led a team providing basic healthcare to some of the 2,000 people who live in traditional mud houses in the village in Pakistan‘s Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. “She had no reason to be scared of anyone.”

He last spoke to her on Tuesday afternoon, when she called to confirm she would meet him as normal. “She said she was on her way and I said I would be waiting to pick her up.” Thirty minutes later she and six out of the nine people, mostly fully veiled women, riding in the Suzuki would be dead, murdered by as yet unidentified militants while they sat inside the vehicle.

The appalling incident has raised fresh alarm about the growing willingness of Pakistan’s increasingly brutal militants to attack civilians. Like many other parts of the country where ethnic Pashtuns live, the district of Swabi has had its share of trouble with militancy. But while some schools have been blown up, no one can recall anything like last week’s attack.

One victim, a male nurse called Umjad Ali, had even moved home from his employment in Karachi after his family feared for his safety in the strife-torn coastal megalopolis.

The two gunmen, faces covered with cloth, had picked their site carefully. Their motorbikes were parked at a narrow point where the road dips, forcing traffic to slow down. There were no people or houses for miles around, only fields sown with a young wheat crop.

The driver, who survived a bullet in his chest, asked whether he should try to smash past the two sinister, pistol-brandishing men. But Umjad Ali thought it better to stop and talk.

In one apparent act of mercy, one of the men pulled Naila’s four-year-old son, Ehsan Shehzad, out of the vehicle and threw him into a field after she begged that he be spared. The gunmen asked for everyone’s mobile phones, but then began shooting through the windows of the vehicle before the devices were handed over.

In a part of the world where people hate to break the worst possible news over the phone, relatives of the six women and one man eventually received calls saying their wives and daughters were “seriously hurt” and they should come immediately. Days on, they are all still in deep shock.

“When the Taliban killed the polio vaccination team it occurred to me she could be targeted as well,” said Umara Khan, father of Shourat, a 28-year-old who taught in Sher Afzal Banda’s small primary school. “But I did not ask her to leave, she loved to teach.”

Like many of the other families affected, Shourat, with her well-paid NGO job, was the main breadwinner for her household.

“What are they trying to achieve? I don’t know,” said Hussain Wali, the father of Rahilla, a 25-year-old teacher who was also in the Suzuki. “We did not have a sense that women, teachers and health workers would be targeted.”

On Friday police claimed that one of the culprits blew himself up after the police attempted to arrest him.

The incident in Swabi comes after the killing of nine people working on UN-backed anti-polio vaccination teams during a string of attacks last month.

In October, Malala Yousafzai, a schoolgirl from the nearby district of Swat, survived being shot in the head by a Taliban gunman, who objected to her fight for girls to be educated. Last week she was discharged from hospital in Birmingham after weeks of treatment. In December, militants kidnapped 23 tribal police. Observers say that in the past the militants would probably have tried to trade them for a ransom, but 21 of them were killed with no demands made.

“Things are changing, things have been happening that never happened in the past,” said Rahimullah Yousafzai, a journalist based in Peshawar who has been covering the tribal area for decades. “Attacking mosques, funerals, graves and, of course, these teachers and health workers.”

Yousafzai says Pakistan’s militants have come to see anyone involved in charitable or development organisations as fair game: “They take it for granted that if you work for an NGO you are funded by the west, that you are trying to change local traditions and customs, you are doing something that is secular. They no longer expect to get any public support, so no effort is being made to win hearts and minds. That is beyond them. Now all they want is to intimidate and pre-empt an uprising against them.”

For the time being, the people of Sher Afzal Banda are defiant. Local residents say they want the school to be reopened as soon as possible.

Javed Akhtar, executive director of SWWS, is considering hiring armed guards for his staff. Like most humanitarian workers, he hates the idea of using guns but sees no alternative. But he fears more trouble. As in nearby Swat, the people of Swabi have a strong commitment to educating their daughters and the district boasts a high female literacy rate. “Malala survived, she was discharged from hospital – that is a big defeat for them,” he said. “They now want revenge, they want to kill many Malalas.”

India hosts training for 30,000 Afghan army troops (to be infiltrated into Pakistan as Taliban)images-51

By GHANIZADA 

 
  • The government of India is intending to arrange military training for more than 20000 Afghan security forces inside the Indian soil in a bid to pave the way for expanding its political presence in Afghanistan beyond 2014, when all the NATO-led combat forces will leave the country.

The United States of America is going to sponsor the training expenses of the Afghan national security forces and has vowed a $12 billion budget to train Afghan security.

In the meantime, the United States of America urged the other nations having common interests to take part in the Afghan national army trainings.

On the other hand, lack of tendency by the Afghan government to train its national security forces by Pakistan has doubled the responsibilities of the Afghan counterpart India, to burden shoulder for more training responsibilities of the Afghan security forces.

According to reports, India is going to host around 30,000 Afghan national army soldiers to train in Indian military facilities in northern and western parts of India.

Meanwhile, training Afghan national security forces also makes a section of the strategic cooperation agreement between India and Afghanistan, which was signed on October 2011 between the two nations.

 

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