– AMBIGUOUS PAKISTAN
The proofs that the Mumbai Carnage, from 11/28/2008, was planned in Pakistan, the preparations took place in Pakistan, the infrastructure was in Pakistan, the leaders, trainers, supporters and financier lives in Pakistan and the perpetrators themselves are all Pakistanis are as conclusive as proof can be. They came from variety of sources, and backed fully by USA and UK intelligence community. It is for Pakistan to stand behind its words to fully cooperate with the Investigation and to take drastic steps not only against the direct perpetrators of the specific Mumbai Carnage but against the huge infrastructure of terror formed by its own Intelligence service – ISI, aimed to encounter India over the Kashmir issue (see – Mumbai-carnage investigation).
Initially there were good signs that Pakistan really meant business. On 12/07/2008, following the visit of UK PM Gordon Brown, Pakistani troops indeed raided the militant Islamic Laskar-e-Toiba training camp near Muzaffarabad. Many of the list of most wanted that India handed over to Pakistan were arrested (see – INDIAN-Request). Although Pakistan refused categorically to extradite the most wanted to India it promised to judge them in Pakistan. Nevertheless Pakistan refused to allow British agents to interrogate any suspects on Pakistani soil which casted doubton the real transparency.
But the initial positive steppes got a disturbing twist. On 12/18/2008, despite all the conclusive evidences, the Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari, claimed seriously that there is no “real evidence” that the terrorists who attacked Mumbai came from Pakistan.
“Have you seen any evidence to that effect? I have definitely not seen any real evidence to that effect,” Zardari told BBC in an interview.
The claim came despite the fact that Zardari earlier acknowledged that the perpetrators of the Mumbai carnage of November 26 could be ‘non-state’ actors from Pakistan.
Challenging President Asif Ali Zardari’s assertion that there was no proof that the arrested Mumbai attacker hailed from Pakistan’s Punjab province, former premier Nawaz Sharif has said that the suspect’s village was cordoned off and his parents were not allowed to meet anyone.
“I have checked myself. His (Ajmal Amir Iman alias Ajmal Kasab) house and village has been cordoned off by the security agencies. His parents are not allowed to meet anybody. I don’t understand why it has been done,” Nawaz Sharif said in an interview to the Pakistani TV Geo News channel.
The claim of Pakistani President came a day after yet another bizarre twist, when the Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said, on Wednesday 12/17/2008, that the Pakistani regime “lost track” of one of India’s most wanted militants, Maulana Masood Azhar, following his supposed arrest only a few days earlier.
Qureshi’s remarks came about a week after Defense Minister Chaudhry Ahmed Mukhtar told a TV channel that Azhar had been detained by Pakistani authorities.
* Giving the facts that all! people involved in organizing the Mumbai Carnage were or are affiliated to the Pakistani intelligence – ISI, the scale of the preparations and the long period of time they took, over six month, it is impossible to assume that ISI, at least, did not overlook the activity.
* Investigations related to any possible involvement of ISI in terror attacks have the tendency to be stuck in a dead end. So were the cases of the INDIAN Embassy Bombing in Kabul, on 07/07/2008, Or the Marriott Bombing in Islamadab, on 09/20/2008. Not like in real democracies where, sometimes, to criticize or to lash out on intelligence is often the bon ton, in Pakistan the Army as a whole and ISI in particular, are still taboos.
* The u-turn in Pakistan’s attitude toward the international cooperation of the Mumbai Carnage investigation emphasizes that the investigation might led to its own intelligence apparatus – ISI and that the Pakistani Civilian and democratic regime does not feel sure enough to impose its authority on the Pakistani Army and Intelligence, which by all means is, in fact, a state within a state.
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