You better start behaving before dad cuts your allowance

The big news out of Washington this morning was that the White House has confronted Pakistan about their lame efforts in going after terrorists within their borders:

President Bush has decided to send an unusually tough message to one of his most important allies, Gen. Pervez Musharraf, the president of Pakistan, warning him that the newly Democratic Congress could cut aid to his country unless his forces become far more aggressive in hunting down operatives with Al Qaeda, senior administration officials say…

American intelligence officials have concluded that the terrorist infrastructure is being rebuilt, and that while Pakistan has attacked some camps, its overall effort has flagged…

For the time being, officials say, the White House has ruled out unilateral strikes against the training camps that American spy satellites are monitoring in North Waziristan, in Pakistan’s tribal areas on the border. The fear is that such strikes would result in what one administration official referred to as a “shock to the stability” of General Musharraf’s government. [Link]

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p>I find some humor in the fact that Bush is telling Musharraf to be worried that the Democrats will be more stern than him. It is a little like a mother saying, “you better shape up or you will be in big trouble with daddy.”

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p>The Blotter reports additional details:

In a highly unusual move, the deputy director of the CIA, Stephen R. Kappes, was flown to Pakistan to personally present President Pervez Musharraf today with “compelling” CIA evidence of al Qaeda’s resurgence on Pakistani soil, U.S. officials say.

Kappes joined Vice President Dick Cheney for the surprise showdown meeting in Musharraf’s office in Pakistan.

The CIA evidence reportedly included satellite photos and electronic intercepts of al Qaeda leaders operating in Pakistan. [Link]

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Of course, we all know that if El General goes down then things could get a lot worse in Pakistan. And so the dance continues (at least until daddy comes home).

74 thoughts on “You better start behaving before dad cuts your allowance

  1. ah… the classic good cop / bad cop routine.

    The key to making it work, of course is that the badcop has to be credible in his threat… arguing that the dems want to “cut & run” is pretty credible as far as threats go…

  2. I find it ridiculous the way Pakistan is being singled out here. Today the Canadiam premier has criticised Pakistan for not controlling its borders properly.

    I think it is imperative America understands that If you want to ensure failure of Al-Qaeda, USE YOUR RESOURCES BETTER. I think it is ridiculous that America wastes its military budget attacking Iraq, when it could be assisting Pakistan in overcoming terrorism.

    Secondly, I also find it ridiculous that Pakistan is expected to fight terrorism despite Al-Qaeda being an offshoot of America’s world politics. Al-Qaeda, while a terrorist organization, is based on the ideological premise to support injustices against muslims, and it is America that has been bankrolling Israel for decades (even providing nuclear arms).

    Lastly Pakistan is a victim too, there have been 4 – 5 bombs in the past 7 months linked to Al-Qaeda. 7 months ago there was a bomb blast right outside my aprtment, last month america fired tomahawk missiles into my drivers neighbourhood (in NWFP) and last week Al-Qaeda bombed a court house DURING proceedings.

    It pisses me off that Pakistan is being made the scapegoat here. Pakistan is not obliged to fight the war against terrorism. America also needs to understand that terrorism cannot be stopped that easily. Even in todays world bombing Manhattan should not be too much of a problem for people hell bent on it. Terrorism can only be curbed by reducing anti-American hatred in the world, by dismantling Al-Qaeda’s support base. Occupying Iraq, supporting Israel and bombing Afghnistan and Pakistan is not going to achieve anything, but make AL-Qaeda stronger.

  3. Pakistan is not obliged to fight the war against terrorism.

    Say what? If we’re defining terrorism as “acts of violence against civilian populations,” I would think every country is obliged to fight terrorism.

  4. Pakistan is not obliged to fight the war against terrorism.

    Yep, and it cannot even if it wants to. ‘Cuz its too busy fighting proxy wars against india :-D

  5. ” supporting Israel and bombing Afgahnistan “

    What are you, Sanam Bewafa? Abandoning Kashmir already? What about our oppressed brethren in Mindanao, Southern Thailand, Chechnya, Bali and last but not the least Europe?

    We shouldn’t have bombed the Taliban – we should have simply invited them to a Biryani feast at the White House and they’d not only have handed us Osama but also agreed to stop shooting women dead in sports stadiums.

  6. I’m not very well informed about the Waziristan situation, but this man is. One of the best blogs on politics in Pakistan, written by a Pakistani journalist.

    http://politicalpakistan.blogspot.com/

    Search his blog for “Waziristan” and you’d find a bunch of pieces. From what little I know, both in Balochistan and Waziristan, autonomy movements are being suppressed in the name of fighting terrorism. I wonder if the Americans are so naive as to believe whatever line Musharraf feeds them about terrorists hiding in Waziristan who need to be smoked out.

  7. You guys are right about the obligation part, and I didn’t say that correctly. Terrorism in undoubtedly wrong and needs to be countered by all parties as it is a crime against humanity. However, I continue to feel its ridiculous that Pakistan is being made singularly responsible. If its a crime against humanity than humanity needs to make a collective effort to curb the crime. Its a collective failure, and not a only a failure by Pakistan that we have witnessed the resurgence of the Taliban.

  8. Ba,You basically do the job you are paid to do.Pakistan gets funding for its military from the US to fight terrorism. Its either they take the money and fight for the US or refuse the money and face the consequences for funding Al-qeda and other such organizations. You can’t just take the money and do nothing about it. We have CEOs for that.

  9. Al-Qaeda, while a terrorist organization, is based on the ideological premise to support injustices against muslims, and it is America that has been bankrolling Israel for decades (even providing nuclear arms).

    OMG. It must be America’s fault. Thank god they are fighting “injustice” against Muslims by killing women and children and innocent civilians. Real swell.

    Lastly Pakistan is a victim too, there have been 4 – 5 bombs in the past 7 months linked to Al-Qaeda. 7 months ago there was a bomb blast right outside my aprtment, last month america fired tomahawk missiles into my drivers neighbourhood (in NWFP) and last week Al-Qaeda bombed a court house DURING proceedings.

    Pakistani is an exporter of terrorism, not a victim of it.

    I don’t think everyone’s pointing the finger at Pakistan and saying “You, you go clean up the whole mess you created” its more like “You, you better chip in to clean up the whole mess you created”

  10. Since Pakistan has been the main source of terrorism they obviously have an interest in fighting terrorism or otherwise they will be fought as terrorists. The Bush administration could obviously be accused of being naive about the Generals ability to strike down on ISI and their offsprings, something they seem to have realized, but to accuse them of creating the terrorists is at best laughable.

  11. I was going to recommend the same politicalpakistan.blogspot.com blog but noticed that Thalassa beat me to it. Very thorough and heavy on details and analysis. There was also a good ICG report a few months back about Musharraf’s failure to fight Taliban-lite in Waziristan.

  12. No too much new here. US foreign policy is addicted to folks like Musharraf, upstanding generals who need a billion or two to “manage” their people. Yesterday it was Saddam, today it is Musharraf, tomorrow it will be some other dictator in a “strategic” third-world country.

    Meanwhile our tax dollars continue to flow to these losers. And, yes, I realize that one can find fancy 10 rupee words to describe the “relationship” between US and Pakistan. The reality is much simpler and quite crass…

  13. I think I have to play the devil’s advocate and support Musharraf. :-) . If I’m in Musharraf’s position, I’d do the same thing. Get money and do nothing.


    Musharraf to US (in his heart):

    What a bunch of fools (or maybe not)?. 20-30 years back you paid us with money / modern missiles / propaganda materials to fund the same guys who you are fighting against now. Now you are again paying money to attack the same thugs. Don’t you guys know this country is formed on the basis of “Islam in danger”. we won’t take any attack on islam silently. that’s why we burned your islamabad embassy in 70s even though you are not responsible for the attack on Mecca.

    let’s talk history here. When Pakistan was formed you supported and pumped in money and induced us to join SEATO etc. in the 50s and gave us modern military equipment to confront the “communist” threat. It helped us that the other fool “Nehru” with his aristocratic background thought too much of himself to articulate his opinions on everything under the sun talking some BS about non-alignment but begging you for support in 62 during the attack by the other “communist” brother, while missing much on the domestic front. We were like your slaves and failed to take advantage of the 62 war and even during 65 war you backstabbed us. let’s not even talk about 71. why do you want us to believe you?

    Anyhow my position is screwed. I am constantly thinking of a “jihad crazed bomber” or a “helicopter crash”. I have been harassed so much that I need to make a visit to the “Hindoo shiva temple” (yeah..yeah the one whose ‘d*ck’ is worshipped by those fools), to prove my secularism..

    sigh..


  14. I can’t believe the lack of discussion on what “terrorism” is. The movement against terrorism is, as a few were pointing out concerning Waziristan situation, realtive! For example Ba’s comment “You guys are right about the obligation part, and I didn’t say that correctly. Terrorism in undoubtedly wrong and needs to be countered by all parties as it is a crime against humanity.” Without “terrorism” its possible most nations would not exist as they do today. it is the power struggle between two regimes, and often, as in the cases of most of Latin America, they are both pretty powerful ones.

    Other than that, Abhi i love the foreshadowing with “until daddy comes home”. Its interesting to see the dems portrayed as the tough ones when republican rhetoric is built on hawkish international relations and keeping america “safe”

  15. So does Mr. Bush still think that invading Iraq will weaken Al-Qaeda? There’s so much hypocrisy on all sides that no one can take the moral high ground on global terrorism. Though, Mr. Bush might deserve more of the blame for destabilizing the situation so much in the first place.

  16. A point to ponder, of the approximate billion dollar international arms trade, the US holds more than a 60% share and then there is the UK and France along with some other countries who form a big chunk of the remaining. A good percentage of the weapons obtained by terrorist groups (not the bottle bomb ones but the slightly more sophisticated ones) are usually these same arms which come into the black and gray markets at sometime.

  17. Terrorism existed in India long before the US invaded Iraq, Bush might not have helped the situation but I wouldn’t say he deserves more of the blame.

  18. Terrorism is a lovely buzzword thrown around for political purposes. Apply it equally to all those who spread fear and kill innocent civilians, then try taking the higher moral ground. Hypocrisy that benefits one group is no better than hypocrisy that protects another and the word terrorism means little until it is applied equally to all those who spread it.

  19. samjay

    Terrorism existed in India long before the US invaded Iraq, Bush might not have helped the situation but I wouldn’t say he deserves more of the blame.

    Indeed, terrorism existed before the US invaded Iraq. And those of us who have been around remember well that one major source of terror in India involved US funding of Zia-Ul Haq’s pakistani goverment in the 80s. I also recall Ronald Reagan standing with Mujihadeen in the White house in 1982 and declaring them the “equivalent of our founding fathers”. Not soon thereafter the “freedom struggle” in Kashmir took on a more ominous and violent form.

    Anyway, US policy in South Asia hasnt been all bad. I was educated at a technical school created with US help in the 50s. I also recall US food shipments (“PL-480″) to india in the 60s. But in relationship to Pakistan US policy has been appalling. The US has winked at genocide (Bangladesh) and openly supported the most appalling forms of islamism (afghanistan, pakistan). It will take a lot more than a few visits by Cheney to change much of this.

  20. I also recall US food shipments (“PL-480″) to india in the 60s.

    I wont be as sure about the PL-480 scheme. I know people take Vandana Shiva with a pinch of salt but I have heard this many times from different sources over the years

    Past experiences shows that several of the minor weeds that came along with PL-480 wheat shipments into India during sixties have turned into biological nuisances, often becoming a national menance. The noxious Pathenium weed came with American wheat and now occupies 15 per cent of the country’s geographical area.

    The link is here though its not related to PL-480 directly.

  21. I think I have to play the devil’s advocate and support Musharraf. :-) . If I’m in Musharraf’s position, I’d do the same thing. Get money and do nothing.

    Yep. You have to give the devil his due. He plays the game better than anyone else. I wish the Indians would learn a lesson or two from him. But to the extent that he’s not been good for Pakistan itself it’s hard to admire him for all the audacity he may have.

  22. It has been appaling, but the source to terrorism in India is still in Pakistan and the arab world and not the US. Unlike former Indian administrations I’m happy to see that the current is able to see enemies based on real threats and not some percieved ideological threat. And don’t forget that our friend in the 80′s was as appaling, and not to forget disastrous for our own people.

  23. Ardy

    Ever read the Mithrokhin archives? Our leaders wand journalists where Soviet lapdogs that where paid to spread rumors like that. Infact we where as colonized by the russians as we where by the brits.

    and Vandana Shiva is not to be taken with a pinch of salt, she is the mouthpiece of western farmers that want to stop us from exporting agrucultural goods. Why else would she be marching with french and japaneese farmers? To the benefit of our people! Surley no one can be that stupid…

  24. Samjay – are you saying that because of the Soviet Influence and all that was exposed by the archives, the information about weeds that came with PL-480 is all conclusively false? I already said that Vandana Shiva should be taken with a pinch of salt, though I am not so sure about your assertion of her being anti export of agricultural produce (or rather it would be interesting to know if true, what her reasons are). Not to say you are wrong, but that I would need to study up on it before I form a opinion on that.

    Coming back to PL-480, there have been enough assertions and counter-assertions and the waters are murky enough, that I wont be as sure as you are that it was beneficial in the long run. The US did not do it deliberately might be true but whether PL-480 caused harm or not, I am not so sure.

  25. oh, before you get all excited :-) , I do believe that the US helped us when we needed it, just that in the long run we are not sure if the weeds issue helped us or not

  26. Ardy

    Neither you nor me can tell if they are conclusively false by citing sources from the internet, but anyone who was in India in the 80′s remebers how most things where blamed on the US.

    Frankly I take nothing Vandana Shiva says seriously, she has made such ridicoulus statements through and through again that therer really is no reason to. Judge the claim by it’s merits, she marches with José Bové, what is his reason behind restrictions of imports from the developing world? Do you seriously believe that export would be bad for Indian farmers? Vanadana Shiva is a celevrity in the west, she sells her books in the west, her source of living come from those in the west that oppose imports from the developing world. She does not earn her income in India. That makes her their mouthpiece.

  27. the source to terrorism in India is still in Pakistan and the arab world and not the US

    From Wikipedia :

    ..intensified attacks[in Jammu and Kashmir] occurred in the late 1980s, when Mujahideen fighters from Afghanistan slowly infiltrated the region, allegedly with Pakistan’s help, following the end of the Soviet-Afghan War in 1989.

    Samjay, do you not think that the US is directly responsible for the creation of the Mujahideen, who in turn became the cause of terrorism in J&K? Agreed, that Pakistan and the Arabs sustained it from there on but is not the creator of a Frankenstein as much to blame as his caretaker?

  28. A great book about the relationships among the CIA, ISI, Taliban, Saudi intelligence, Northern Alliance, and the Pakistani government is last year’s Pulitzer prizewinner, “Ghost Wars” by Steve Coll.

  29. Can this discussion be less about Pakistan’s role vis-a-vis India? Everything in Pakistani politics doesn’t have to analyzed with respect to its dynamics with India, and rehashing the same thing over and over is tiresome.

    Can anyone familiar with the places say a bit more about Waziristan? What are the different perspectives on Waziristan’s links with al-Qaeda? What kind of autonomy movement exists in Waziristan and what is the Pakistan government’s policy on them?

  30. At least right now it’s limited to threats of pulling funds. Tariq Ali’s article in today’s CounterPunch pretty much covers what punitive expeditions under UN mandate can achieve (on such of our tax dollars as are brought to bear) — nothing good. The Taleban are on a stronger footing in Pakistan because NATO troops are in Afghanistan. No matter how much I try to explain to college friends that their zeal for improving women’s lives there is window dressing at best and a poor excuse at any time for wrecking such sources of support they do have, I haven’t been able to get through. They never seem to hear of atrocities like this one.Another thing TA mentions which people tend to avoid– since the Durand Line died well over ten years ago, there is no border between Pakistan and Afghanistan. No reason to believe the Pathans will put up with another line drawn in the sand.

  31. Interesting, Christopher Hitchens is a polemicist with whom i find my self often in agreement Here’s what he wrote while reviewing a book {link}

    I also have done a fair amount of watching pakistani TV and they contradict Ba’s point, Several times people have been on TV who have described meeting Osama in person in Pakistan. And some of these same folks are sitting in pakistani parliament. Well frankly you cant have it both ways!

    Musharraf’s internal strategy was mentioned several times on these shows. Their argument is that pakistanis should support him as he is trying to prevent pakistan to be attacked. I recomend watching geo, ptv and ary channels to any one who wants to see the mental gymnastics the pakistanis are doing in their head.

    Regarding War on Terror, It is obvious that it is about ISLAM. and like it or not Pakistan, UAE, and Saudi Arabia are huge supporters of terrorism and Jihadi mentality have to be dealt with. And slowly they are being dealt with.

  32. Well, the US policy toward Pakistan has been apalling and short-sighted; they are taken in too easily by the scare tactics of, ‘what happens if Musharraf falls’ scenarios. It’s a good game, but please, everyone supports dictators. I love how only the US gets called on it.

    BTW: What was India’s response to the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan? I mean, weren’t the close relations between the Soviets and India just as much supportive of a repressive regime (you had no trouble buying Soviet weaponry) as the US supporting Pakistan? And, spare me the, ‘we only do it because the Americans do it’ routine. I mean, what about all that oil from Sudan? What’s your super moral policy there, blame-America-for-everything-crowd?

    *Look, the US got it wrong in Afghanistan, but what do you think people should have done about the Soviet invasion? There are still land-mines from that invasion killing innocent Afghanis. Why can’t some of you think outside the standard bash the West mode?

  33. Amrita wrote:-

    since the Durand Line died well over ten years ago, there is no border between Pakistan and Afghanistan. No reason to believe the Pathans will put up with another line drawn in the sand.

    and guess what the Taliban adminstration had refused to make durand line permanent or to extend it. And its not only the pukhtoons who want line to be dropped, Balochs too support it. Ever wonder why Karzai brought up the issue of balochistan on CNN with Wolf Blitzer(Now thats a name better suited for a General)

  34. Quick Survey! I would love to do something on the lines of longbets.org….

    {1} How long will war on terror last?> My semieducated guess is, its going to be a series of war for at least next 70 years or so. What do you folks think?

    {2} What role will India play I beleive it will do nothing and probably still have more terrorist attacks. This is my reading of indian politics. India’s strong economic growth happened without the politicians and the country has no consensus

    {3} What do you think will happen to Saudi Arabia, UAE, Pakistan? I dont have a strong prediction but US is inching towards a confrontation and they know it too so I dont know if/when and by how much they will change direction or not.

  35. Preston wrote:-

    A great book about the relationships among the CIA, ISI, Taliban, Saudi intelligence, Northern Alliance, and the Pakistani government is last year’s Pulitzer prizewinner, “Ghost Wars” by Steve Coll.

    Great Book,

    BTW did any one else read Steve Coll’s brilliant work on AT&T. The Deal of the Century: The Breakup of At&T Here’s a man of great width as a writer writing about AT&T, financial analyst, politics etc. And he’s very much an autodidact on the various topics he has covered.

  36. BTW: What was India’s response to the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan? I mean, weren’t the close relations between the Soviets and India just as much supportive of a repressive regime (you had no trouble buying Soviet weaponry) as the US supporting Pakistan? MD didi,

    You knowledge about South Asia needs some serious brushing up. It is almost all “hawa hawai

    Two points:

    1) Afghanistan as a buffer between Russia and British India, and then between Pakistan goes back to 100s of years – the Czars, Lenin and all. It has a significant strategic importance to Russia. Afghanistan Governments have been in past from Russian puppets to friends of Russia. At some point CIA got into the game, also linked with Shah toubles in Iran, and headon collided with Russian interests – nothing wrong, it is all part of Cold War. The covert operations of CIA date back to 1975, before the invasion – well, it is all part of global intrigue. That is when Russians panicked. Here is background on the “Great Game“. India’s interest in Afghanistan has nothing do with US, but with Pakistan – another intrigue that goes back to Pashtun politics, Congress party, Muslim League, and MA Jinnah.

    2) India and USSR close defense ties was an response to US-Pakistan ties, and East Pakistan crisis, and even earlier Washington-Islamabad-Tehran alliance. The historical defense pact between Indira Gandhi and Brezhnev was at the start of East Pakistan crisis, and Kissinger-Indira Gandhi falling out. I do not know whether you pay attention to such facts.

  37. Kush Thanks for pointing some of these points. Indias position regarding USSR in afghanistan was complicated and muddled but still amoral. It did(or i should say Indira did) make statements saying that USSR should withdraw quickly. Pre sikh militancy the policy was different. Several Afghans were given refuge in india(these were mostly anti pakistani and anti soviet dissident). Post sikh miltancy the policy was more pro USSR as it did provide intelligence on training camps in pakistan.

    Although a more serious charge in morals comparing human rights is that of india’s silence on Khmer rouge and Tibet issue. Polpot regime was recognized by india. and the tibet issue is oh well ti-kya bhaiya. I would like to india take a decent moral stance but it hasnt…

  38. Why Kush, why would I pay attention to facts when I know you already know more than I possible could, more than anyone else at Sm possibly could, and would summarily correct me?

    Sloppy post of mine so let me make it clear: the United States is not the only nation which has supported dictators. If India had national interests which allied her with certain powers, than the US believed the same, and acted accordingly. I object not to the criticism of policies, but the almost religious belief that the US is the only nation which has every corrupted itself.

    Much easier to criticize a world power than to be one. We (well, our forebears) shall see if the Indian hegemon will be any more ‘clean’ than the US one.

    BTW: is there anything that India has ever done wrong in it’s almost perfect foreign policy past? Do you pay attention to such facts?

  39. BTW: is there anything that India has ever done wrong in it’s almost perfect foreign policy past? Do you pay attention to such facts?

    MD, India has done lot of things wrong in past, and still does. It is a foreign policy of a developing country that had to cover their ass at times, and often lacks mojo – classic case when they took a strong moral stance on Tibet (when almost no one did) but later backed off.

    However, 1971 is not one of them, not at all, and at that time, strategic alliance with USSR was one of the smartest move. It is the same time, Henry Kissinger had directed Shah of Iran, and Turkey to divert F-16 squadrons to Pakistan, and spare parts. By asking Iran and Turkey, it was outside the purview of US Congress, and was blank check courtesy Washington-Islamabad-Tehran alliance. Around the same time, Nixon was also seeking Ayub Khan’s help (match maker) for Ping Pong/ Great Wall Policy to China.

    They have been huge messes, goofups in past by India. However, India vis-a-vis Afghanistan is very complicated (a lot of refugees from Afghanistan came to India after Soviet invastion – the current President Karzai was one of them. He even got educated in Simla), and Pakistan factors in as a primary factor in the equation.

    To understand Afghanistan, one has to step back and even look what has happened in Iran in last 100 years, the role of communist politicians in over throwning Shah (all of them were executed by Ayatollah Khomeini immediately), and oil politics. In my comment (#.42), I have kept a neutral view regarding USA and USSR, they were in each other’s……what can I say. And India was looking after their interest, with keeping China and Pakistan in mind.

  40. Liberal Warrior, please explain this -

    Regarding War on Terror, It is obvious that it is about ISLAM. and like it or not Pakistan, UAE, and Saudi Arabia are huge supporters of terrorism and Jihadi mentality have to be dealt with. And slowly they are being dealt with.

    What are you referring to? Are you saying that the governments of UAE and Saudi Arabia are state sponsors of terrorism? Are you sayin the Saudi royal family has been directly involved in funding al-Qaeda. Are you saying that Rashid al Maktoum is a supporter of Islamic fundamentalism? What’s your point?

  41. Al Beruni,

    The US has winked at genocide (Bangladesh)

    The Nixon tapes that recently came out proves the above completely. For example: “Yahya is our guy” – Henry ‘nobel “peace” prize winner’ Kissinger As usual I agree with your views, I would have expressed the same if I could express them as well as you do.

  42. What are you referring to? Are you saying that the governments of UAE and Saudi Arabia are state sponsors of terrorism? Are you sayin the Saudi royal family has been directly involved in funding al-Qaeda. Are you saying that Rashid al Maktoum is a supporter of Islamic fundamentalism? What\’s your point?

    dozens of journalists have traced the flow of money, traveling pattern of terrorism and they all point to a common pattern that citizens, and government officials of these countries are involved with terrorism. Now you may get a kenyan or an american of latin ancestory to do the act but look at what they are doing. And the other part was hello it is about ISLAM. Every politico likes to say its not about it, but thats either a lie or its a delusion. And Regarding Saudi Royal Family, which of the 4000 member should i start with from wanted drug smugglers to half wahabis to full wahabis living in the tent…. Are you saying that those societies are like the modern day Scandanavians? Get to your point?

  43. dozens of journalists have traced the flow of money, traveling pattern of terrorism and they all point to a common pattern that citizens, and government officials of these countries are involved with terrorism.

    Your comment implied that UAE and Saudi Arabia were state sponsors of terrorism. This is certainly not the case, no matter how many of the Saudi royal family members are half or full wahabis (last I checked, being a wahabi and being a supporter of terrorism is not the same thing).

    Oh, and watching Geo and PTV doesn’t necessarily a Pakistan expert make.

  44. A good review on India and Afghanistan relationship historically, and in present context. Some quotes:

    Karzai led a 110-strong delegation made up of cabinet ministers, members of the Afghan National Assembly, and businesspeople on a four-day visit to India in early April. The trip was Karzai’s fourth to India since he became Afghan leader in late 2001. But unlike during Karzai’s visit to Islamabad in February — which led to an exchange of accusations between the Afghan leader and Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf — Karzai and his hosts in New Delhi appeared to get along well.
    Close cooperation with Afghanistan — a country with which India has had historically friendly relations up to 1992 — is a cost-effective policy to keep Pakistan in check. India made a strategic mistake when it took a back seat to Pakistan in the postcommunist era of Afghanistan. It seems very unlikely that New Delhi — with its aspirations to become a regional and even extraregional power — would allow Afghanistan to once again become a pawn in Pakistani plans.
    Unlike New Delhi’s aspiration to take a seat on the world stage, Pakistan’s policies from that state’s inception until now are focused primarily on the real and perceived threat emanating from India. This overarching concern also has been at the heart of Islamabad’s designs to help establish a client government in a weak and dependent Afghanistan, keeping Kabul outside of the Indian orbit and Afghanistan.

    and the last one

    The fact that Abdul Ahad Karzai — Afghan President Karzai’s father — was assassinated in Pakistan in 1999, allegedly by the Taliban, coupled with Karzai himself being a graduate of Himachal Pradesh University in Shimla, India, did not help diminish the threat perception in Islamabad that Kabul’s Indian-educated leader could have a potential distaste for Pakistan.

    And Kashmir comes into play too.