Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Blood Money

Who needs enemies when you've got allies like Pakistan? The Vancouver Sun reports:

MAYWAND, Afghanistan - The leader of an Afghan district where Canadians are currently deployed says he has reason to believe the Pakistani secret police are offering cash rewards to anyone who uses an explosive device to injure or kill a NATO soldier. "I have heard the Pakistan ISI (Inter-Services Intelligence) is openly giving money for people that are laying mines," said Haji Saifullah, district leader for Maywand, a desert region in the northwest sector of Kandahar province with a population of about 100,000 people.

"If the mine goes off on coalition forces, they are going to get more money, if they go off on (Afghanistan National Army soldiers) they are going to get middle-class money, and if it is going off on police, they are going to get less money," he added, while speaking through an interpreter provided by the Canadian military.

CanWest News Service yesterday could not independently verify Mr. Saifullah's comments, and the district leader did not provide any direct evidence to prove the allegations. ... In yesterday's interview, Mr. Saifullah said he has been told that a successful bomber will get 100,000 Pakistani rupees, about $1,900 Cdn, if he kills a member of NATO's International Security Assistance Force, and 20,000 rupees, about $380, for members of the Afghan forces. He added he has heard a bomber will get half those amounts if he is able to simply hit a convoy with an explosive device.

Well maybe Pakistan isn't offering the money, not the government anyway, but the practice of offering cash for heads seems a well established practice. The families of suicide bombers sent to kill Jews, for example, are given special vouchers they can redeem, while those who actually go on missions pose for a special video to commemorate the occasion. The current world crisis has generated many absurdities. Recently a number of Serbs have been sentenced by a war crimes court for videotaping the murder of innocent Muslims. But when Muslims videotape the murder of American soldiers and source it through the backdoor to the mainstream media it becomes transformed into news. But history is funny in that way.


Blogger Doug said...

Meanwhile, in Waziristan

The Pakistani government is gladly providing the aid and political cover to promote the fiction that 'peace deals' like the Waziristan Accord are working. In doing so, they are backing the Taliban, which is in league with Al Qaeda.

While there is value in the infighting between the Taliban tribes and the Uzbeks - the fighting will weaken the organizations in the short term - the reality is the long term impact from the Taliban and al Qaeda's perspective is insignificant. This fighting is the equivalent of an internal mafia war - in the end a family rises to the top and the criminal enterprise continues.

The real danger is that this fighting will be viewed as proof future Waziristan Accords are sustainable, and remove Western pressure on the Musharraf regime not to make these deals. More 'peace agreements' will then be cut and will provide the Taliban and al Qaeda with more safe havens to train, arm and operate, and allow them to establish a firmer foothold in the nuclear armed Pakistani state.

4/10/2007 01:34:00 PM  
Blogger Pangloss said...

Pakistan is enough to make anybody lose hope that moderate muslims will ever be able to fend off the domination of their religion by political Islam/ wahhabis/ deobandis/ khomeinistas. Mush sure can't do a thing with his ISI or army. They run around behind his back all day and night, helping bin Laden and Zahawiri roam freely between Chitral, Quetta, and Baluchistan, and claim that Al Qaeda attacks on Uzbek terrorists are proof that Pakistan is on the right side of the War of the Assassins.

Either Mush is under threat by the vampires and knows it, or he is utterly incapable of controlling things the way your typical dictator can control things. In either case, I fear that Pakistan is leaning towards Iran with plans to betray the U.S. either openly or covertly.

4/10/2007 09:36:00 PM  
Blogger ElMondoHummus said...

You know, it hurts me to say this, but the truth is undeniable:

Pakistan is not our ally. Some claim they are, but their populace has shrugged off any thought that the relationship is respected and honored. Musharraf may be a US ally, but the general population of his nation is not.

Plus, in the past, the US relationship with that country was just a repeat of Iraq/Iran, except between Pakistan and India. With India's progress into the modern world economically, and their no-longer existing relationship with the no-longer existing Soviet Union dead and buried, they're no longer an opponent. Economically, they're already practically an ally in that their trade relationship with the US is rather friendly, and recognized by both sides as being of mutual benefit. But with Pakistan's invovlement in the Taliban vis-a-vis the INI, and their society's reluctance to deal with radical militant Islamicism, they're a friend in name only, not in actions. The "benefits" we get out of the relationship have some mighty painful effects, and their populace does not view the US with a friendly eye.

It's going to be painfully obvious in the near future that Pakistan is an antagonist (minus their President and the population in a few earthquake-ravaged areas where the US did humanitarian work). I do hope they don't devolve into an out-and-out enemy, but the future looks bleak. And I hate saying it, because there are moderate muslims in Pakistan, and they're going to become nothing but voices on the margin, scarce in volume and declining in numbers. It's a lousy situation all around with that country and the US.

4/11/2007 09:53:00 AM  

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