Counter-Terrorism: Is Pakistan Pretending?

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September 19, 2006: Pakistan has stepped up its war on Islamic terrorism, and no one believes them. Pakistan has taken a lot of heat recently, for it's peace deal with the pro-Taliban tribes along the Afghan border. Many people in Afghanistan and Pakistan don't trust the tribes to keep their word (to expel all foreigners, especially al Qaeda, and preventing tribesmen from crossing the border to spread Taliban terror in Afghanistan). Pakistan made matters worse by, as part of the deal, by releasing over 2,000 tribesmen who had been arrested as suspected Taliban.

Now Pakistan wants to resume peace talks with India, which is to include, for the first time, Pakistan cracking down on Islamic terrorists who have, for the past two decades, launched attacks on Indian targets from Pakistani bases. These groups include LeT (Lashkar-e-Tayyiba) and JeM (Jesh-e-Mohammadi), who have not only killed thousands in Kashmir, but also hundreds more in other parts of India. One bomb attack, on the Indian Parliament, in late 2001, almost precipitated another war between India and Pakistan. To help forestall that, Pakistan banned LeT and JeM in 2002. But the ban was more smoke than fire. Both organizations continued to operate from Pakistan, under different names, and continued their attacks in Kashmir, and elsewhere in India.

The Pakistani Islamic groups are also known to train terrorists for operations in Western countries. Several of these graduates have been captured, or killed while carrying out terror attacks. If Pakistan is really going to crack down on this type of activity, that is really, really big news. But there are a lot, as in millions, of enthusiastic supporters of Islamic terrorism in Pakistan. The government there is caught between two pressure (from foreigners, and many Pakistanis) to shut down the Islamic terrorists, and from many Pakistanis, to continue supporting the terrorists.

By the end of the year, another promise will have been kept, or broken.


 

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