India-Pakistan: Islamic Militants Calls For Help Ignored


July 10, 2007: At dawn, police attacked the Red Mosque in Pakistan's capital. After five hours of fighting, about 70 percent of the mosque complex was captured. Three security personnel were killed, along with 41 Islamic militants. Another 51 militants were captured.

In northwest India, a police crackdown on tribal separatists (many of whom have turned into ordinary gangsters) led to at least five arrests.

July 9, 2007: The Red Mosque is believed to have 50-100 armed Islamic militants, many foreigners, inside. With them are several hundred teenage religious students, many of them female. In northwest Pakistan, the army has set up several checkpoints on the main roads, in response to increased terrorist and Taliban activity in the area.

In eastern India, police fought a large battle with Maoist rebels, killing at least twenty of them.

In Kashmir, Islamic terrorist fired a rifle grenade into a political rally of a Moslem politician. Twenty people were injured.

July 8, 2007: Pakistan has told the Islamic militants in the Red Mosque to surrender or die. The government believes the militants still have several hundred women and children with them, to be used as human shields. The militants deny this, but it does appear that many of the militants are foreign Islamic terrorists. Water and power have been cut off to the mosque complex. So far at least twenty have died in the siege. Another militant religious school in the capital was occupied by troops.

In northwestern Pakistan, gunmen attacked a Chinese owned factory and killed three Chinese. This may just have been a robbery attempt. In the last seven years, the Pakistani economy has boomed, and there's a lot more to steal.

July 7, 2007: In Pakistan, president Musharraf has gained allies among the political parties that usually oppose him. That's because the siege of the Red Mosque has hurt the Islamic militants (who believe democracy and political parties are un-Islamic), and shown the militants to be more bark than bite. But the siege has got some militants enraged. Today, police discovered three rifles, including two long range 14.5mm ones, on the roof of a building near an airport used by Musharraf's aircraft. The weapons did not have sufficient range to hit the Musharraf's aircraft. The president was unharmed, but it is known that his movements are kept secret. So this assassination attempt had the help of someone inside the government. Musharraf has long known that many in the army and intelligence services back the Islamic militants. But these radicals have to keep their heads down, because moderates are in charge.

At the Red Mosque, militants inside fired at security forces, as well as throwing grenades and gasoline bombs.

July 6, 2007: In Pakistan, one of the Red Mosques captured leaders has been charged with kidnapping Chinese citizens last month, an incident that led to the current siege. In Kashmir, nine Islamic terrorists were killed, including four trying to cross the Pakistani border with a large supply of weapons and explosives. Most of the terrorists fled back into Pakistan, abandoning most of their loads. India has been getting large quantities of sensors and night vision devices from Israel, as well as advice on how to use them to close a border to Islamic terrorists.

July 5, 2007: Most of the students in Pakistan's Red Mosque were allowed to leave. Some 1,200 have left, leaving at least a few hundred still inside. Police blasted several holes in the mosque complex walls. After a week, at least sixteen people have died in the siege, and nearly 200 have been wounded. There has not been a public response to the militants call for an uprising, and public opinion appears to back the governments "besiege and negotiate" strategy.

July 4, 2007: In the Pakistani capital, the siege of Islamic militants in the "Red Mosque" continues, with both sides hardening their positions. For several years, the government tolerated the militants in the "Red Mosque," avoiding confrontation. But the militants interpreted this a weakness, and escalated their activities. Earlier this year, the militants began using the tactic of sending groups of teenage female students out to attack and close down brothels and other activities considered "un-Islamic." Male students at the large Mosque religious school also went about attacking un-Islamic activity. The police were ordered to avoid a confrontation. But the militants went too far when they attacked a Chinese run, and patronized, massage parlor, and hauled off some Chinese citizens. Pakistan depends on Chinese weapons and diplomacy to support its decades old struggle with India. The Chinese complaints could not be ignored, and now the government is determined to remove the militants from the Red Mosque. The militants are defiant, calling for a mass uprising against the government, and vowing to fight to the death. However, today one of the two militant leaders (who are brothers) was arrested as he attempted to leave the mosque dressed as a woman.




Help Keep Us From Drying Up

We need your help! Our subscription base has slowly been dwindling.

Each month we count on your contribute. You can support us in the following ways:

  1. Make sure you spread the word about us. Two ways to do that are to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.
  2. Subscribe to our daily newsletter. We’ll send the news to your email box, and you don’t have to come to the site unless you want to read columns or see photos.
  3. You can contribute to the health of StrategyPage.
Subscribe   contribute   Close