Pakistan now facing 2-front war in Waziristan

Discussion in 'West Asia & Africa' started by Rage, Jul 1, 2009.

  1. Rage

    Rage DFI TEAM Stars and Ambassadors

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    Pakistan now facing 2-front war in Waziristan

    BY SAEED SHAH

    [​IMG]


    ISLAMABAD, Pakistan -- A militant commander in northwest Pakistan tore up a peace deal with the Pakistani government Tuesday, dealing a major blow to the government's campaign against Islamist insurgents in the extremist-controlled Waziristan region.

    The commander, Gul Bahadur, who heads the Pakistani Taliban in North Waziristan, ended his pact with Islamabad and threatened more attacks on the army after an assault on a military convoy in his area Sunday claimed the lives of at least 16 soldiers.

    Pakistan's military had sought to confine the battle in Waziristan to warlord Baitullah Mehsud, a rival of Bahadur and an ally of al-Qaida who has led the militant takeovers of several other regions in northwest Pakistan, but now it finds itself facing both Baitullah Mehsud and Bahadur, as well as a third Taliban commander in the region bordering Afghanistan. Maulvi Nazir, an ally of Bahadur, also announced the end of a peace agreement with Pakistan in recent days.

    Until now, Nazir and Bahadur had focused on the insurgency in Afghanistan, threatening the U.S.-led coalition there but not Pakistan. If Pakistan persists in its offensive, the battle in Waziristan - a base for Afghan insurgents and for al-Qaida - is likely to have far-reaching consequences.

    Bahadur blamed missile strikes in his territory by American drone aircraft for turning him against the Pakistani government, and his move also could spur an ongoing debate over whether the attacks are doing more good than harm.

    "This accord is being scrapped because of Pakistan's failure to stop the American drone attacks in North and South Waziristan," said Ahmadullah Ahmadi, a spokesman for Bahadur. "Since the army is attacking us in North and South Waziristan, we will also attack them."

    There've been some American 40 drone strikes in the tribal area since the beginning of last year, mostly in Waziristan. The deadliest one occurred last week, and it reportedly killed some 80 people at a funeral in South Waziristan.

    "If you're killing them (tribesmen) and at the same time expecting them not to retaliate, then you're expecting too much," said Ayaz Wazir, an analyst and Wazir tribal elder. "It's generally believed in the tribal area that it's the government that's broken the (peace) agreements."

    The Obama administration contends that the drone attacks are hurting the ability of Taliban and al-Qaida commanders to plan and mount operations in Pakistan and Afghanistan, and that the domestic political fallout from the strikes hasn't hurt the Pakistani government too badly, said two U.S. officials who requested anonymity because they weren't authorized to speak publicly.

    One of the officials, however, told McClatchy that Pakistan last week lodged its first formal protest of the drone strikes - called a demarche - with the State Department after two attacks on the same day claimed more than 80 lives.

    The demarche "reflects a gap between our perceptions and their perceptions," the U.S. official said.

    The new U.S. commander in Afghanistan, Army Gen. Stanley McChrystal, is skeptical that the attacks are worth the political price they've exacted, and he's reviewing the tactic as one of his first acts, according to two knowledgeable U.S. officials who've discussed the issue with him.

    Bahadur and Nazir are from the Wazir tribe, while Baitullah Mehsud is a Mehsud tribesman. Analysts said that both tribes could make for an overwhelming enemy for the Pakistani army. Baitullah Mehsud is reckoned to command some 10,000 men, and the Wazir groups would have thousands more.

    "You have to have a strategy to isolate Baitullah, clear the Mehsud area, then make arrangements for (fighting) Maulvi Nazir and Gul Bahadur," said Asad Munir, a former head of military intelligence for the tribal area. "You have to make every effort to separate the Wazirs and the Mehsuds."

    The Pakistani army already appears to be stretched thin by a continuing operation in the Swat valley in the North West Frontier Province, as well as operations in the Bajaur and Mohmand regions in the tribal area. Waziristan, where an offensive in the south is in its "preliminary" stages, is a mountainous area that's ideal for guerrilla warfare.

    In February 2008, Pakistani authorities signed a secret peace deal with Bahadur, according to U.S. and Pakistani officials who couldn't be named because of the sensitivity of the issue. Since then, North Waziristan has been relatively trouble-free for Pakistan.

    Pakistani authorities last week announced a bounty for the top Taliban commanders in the tribal area. The list didn't include Bahadur or Nazir, whom the army - according to many accounts - considered "good" Taliban, unlike "bad Taliban" Mehsud, whose violence has been directed at Pakistan.

    The United States and other Western countries have been critical of Pakistan's history of peace deals with selected Taliban militants, and they view Bahadur and Nazir as a danger to Afghanistan.


    Pakistan now facing 2-front war in Waziristan - World AP - MiamiHerald.com
     
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  3. Dark Sorrow

    Dark Sorrow Respected Member Senior Member

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    I think this is a part of pakistani propoganda to get more aid.
     
  4. MMuthu

    MMuthu Regular Member

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    I am awaiting when PA will kill Baitullah Mehsud.
     
  5. Vladimir79

    Vladimir79 Defence Professionals Defence Professionals

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    I am concerned with lack of truth coming from their media. We have seen in NWFP and Waziristan reports that the Taliban are being crushed with little loss of life yet we see in Western reports that do manage to get in there destroyed tanks and city/villages laid waste. Some Indian reports (sceptical) reveal mass desertion in three brigades. What the truth of the status of the campaign in civilian and military losses is concerning as I fear it is far higher than reported. If this truth is revealed and the state is found to be misleading it could cause repercussions that will turn the tide of public sentiment.
     
  6. MMuthu

    MMuthu Regular Member

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    I am not sure how the Pakistani's are fooling US on this Fake wake.
     
  7. x0700

    x0700 Regular Member

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    good thing they keep fighting,
    now thats called --- "jo dusro ke liye gaddha khodta hai, vo khud usme girta hai" in India
    how true, life completes its circle, karma comes back

    they created this monster, now they deal with it, no remorse from our side :emot154:
     
  8. Indianrabbit

    Indianrabbit Regular Member

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    Well my interaction with Pakistani's make me belief that this war is going to go for at least 5 years. First they still confused they still do not understand that civilians should not be used for war, that too in such big numbers. Second they still support terrorism for them issues being sorted by terrorism is valid. Also I found that there is a lot of hate between groups and they are suspecting each other now which is going to more dangerous since groups will react based on suspicion, creating further trouble. Religious Fanatism is going to take them backword, it is good for India will help in Kashmir.
     
  9. x0700

    x0700 Regular Member

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    although it's sad, for the people who are genuine peace lovers and non-fanatics that this is happening in that nation....
    what India should do is use diplomacy and protect its own security as such people can risk creating bad-relationships and start another war, this is what the army in pakistan and the mujahids want.
     

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