Uncle Sam formalises bombing and rocket attacks on Pakistan ... insufficient numbers of civilians killed so far
Regardless of the solemn agreements entered into by the USA the US military struck inside the sovereign territory of Pakistan today, allegedly hitting at an an al Qaeda-linked group called Al Badar (Al Badr) , allegedly run by Gulbuddin Hekmatyar. This is in the badlands the tribal region which is simply referred to as "ilaka ghair" or the land of the lawless. Home for 3 million people, mostly Pashtun tribes. More concerned at killing each other than Uncle Sam's footsoldiers of democracy.
The village of Tol Khel on the outskirts of Miramshah, the administrative seat of North Waziristan was hit by missiles fired from predator UAV drones . D Tel Saturday 13/9/08"The pre-dawn strike destroyed the house and 12 people were killed," the official said, adding that another 14 people were wounded. "
AFP report that 12 members of Al Badar have been reported killed and 14 were reported wounded in the attack.
The Al Badar group is claimed to be a Kashmiri terrorist group supported by Gulbuddin Hekmatyar and has training camps in the Manshera area of North West Frontier Province (NWFP) in Pakistan, Kotli and Muzaffarabad," . This information arrives via the South East Asia Terrorism Portal who say Kashmiri terrorist groups have flocked to the Northwest Frontier Province, which is only a section of the 2,600 kilometer Afghan-Pakistan border .
Hekmatyar, a hero of the resistance to the Russkis is said to operate under the banner of Hezb-i-Islami Gulbuddin, and to have close links to al Qaeda and Osama bin Laden, as well as the Inter-Services Intelligence, Pakistan's military intelligence agency.... and probably the Boy SCouts of America.
South Waziristan is a killing ground for US forces currently ;
1. August 13th Taliban commanders Abdul Rehman and Islam Wazir, three Turkmen, and "several Arab fighters" were said to be killed and reports "indicated" up to 25 "terrorists" killed in the attack.
2. A total of 8 airstikes and raids in North and South Waziristan have been undertaken since Aug. 31. Five of the strikes have been aimed at compounds in North Waziristan. Four of them were operated by the Haqqani Network.
3 On September 8th US forces fired a clutch of missiles ati the town of Danda Darpa Khel aiming for the Manba Ulom madrassa and an adjacent home. Several members of the Haqqani family were reportedly killed in the strike.
The Manba Ulom madrassa was established by Jalaluddin Haqqani, a mujahideen commander who is closely allied to Mullah Omar and Osama bin Laden. The madrassa was used in the 1980s to train mujahideen to fight the Soviet Union in Afghanistan.
Baitullah Mehsud, head of the Pakistani Taliban and the alleged brains (one of the many) behind the assassination of former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto is also supposed to hang his AK 47 on a tree somewhere near here.
The Haqqanis (Father and Son) are closely allied with the Taliban and al Qaeda, and have close links with the Inter-Services Intelligence. The Haqqanis run a form of informal government in North Waziristan and conduct military and suicide operations in eastern Afghanistan. Siraj Haqqani, Jalaluddin's son, has close ties (it is said) to Osama bin Laden and is one of the most wanted terrorist commanders in Afghanistan. See pic above Jalaluddin Haqqan foreground, and son Nazruddin.
All this of course is a total and complete reversal of what Kim Howells was up to a couple of years ago - Sunday, September 10, 2006 Kim Howells is both mad and ignorant ... Taliban triumphant
British Minister hails Pak-Taliban deal in Waziristan Sept 9th 2006 ZeeNews
"The peace deal between the Pakistan government and pro-Taliban militants which it is claimed will end 5 years of unrest in the tribal area bordering Afghanistan is a "great step forward" and could be a "future model" for insurgency-ridden Kabul,Foreign Minister Kim Howells told reporters during his visit to Peshawar yesterday."Pakistan protests about UAV rocket attacks
All this plays badly in whatever is the Pakistani equivalent of Peoria. The Chief of the Army Staff General Ashfaq Pervez Kiyani and Minister of Defense Chaudhry Ahmad Mukhtar both said the country would do what is needed to defend itself from outside attacks.(AFP report) Pakistan closed the vital and extremely busy Torkham border crossing into Afghanistan to NATO traffic on Sept. 6th. Some 60% of Westerm ISAF / NATO supplies pass through this route.
It was opened the following day.
The bulk of NATO's supplies arrive by sea at Karachi, move overland, north to Peshawar, and head west to the Torkham crossing into Afghanistan and then on to Kabul. The rest of the supplies pass through the Chaman border crossing point in Baluchistan or arrive via air.
In a secret (but not THAT secret) Memorandum / Executive order the outgoing
President George Bush is said to have authorized the increased air and ground strikes inside Pakistan with the express intention of rooting out al Qaeda and Taliban forces. There have been 15 cross-border strikes in Pakistan this year alone, compared to just 10 in 2006 and 2007 combined.
US intelligence officials claim that The Taliban, al Qaeda, and allied terrorist groups (whoever they may be) have established 157 training camps and more than 400 support locations in the tribal areas and the Northwest Frontier Province. The chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen has called for a new strategy in Afghanistan to deny militants bases across the border in Pakistan.(BBC Online)
On July 23, Pakistani Prime Minister Gilani and his cabinet were told that more than 8,000 foreign fighters were operating in the tribal areas.
From the Long War Journal which is effectively the CIA mouthpiece is is a recent list of US attacks on Pakistan territory.
US attacks inside Pakistan in 2008:
• US hits compound in North Waziristan,Sept. 12, 2008
• US targets Haqqani Network in North Waziristan, Sept. 8, 2008
• US airstrike killed five al Qaeda operatives in North Waziristan, Sept. 5, 2008
• Report: US airstrike kills four in North Waziristan, Sept. 4, 2008
• Pakistanis claim US helicopter-borne forces assaulted village in South Waziristan, Sept. 3, 2008 - this was suposed to involve the Task Force 88, the hunter-killer teams assigned to take down al Qaeda and the Taliban's command structure.
• US hits al Qaeda safe house in North Waziristan, Aug. 31, 2008
• Five killed in al Qaeda safe house strike in South Waziristan, Aug. 31, 2008
• Al Qaeda safe house targeted in South Waziristan strike, Aug. 20, 2008
• Cross-border strike targets one of the Taliban's 157 training camps in Pakistan's northwest, Aug. 13, 2008
• Six killed in strike in South Waziristan, July 28, 2008
• Senior Algerian al Qaeda operative killed in May 14 strike inside Pakistan, May 24, 2008
• Missile strike kills 20 in South Waziristan, March 16, 2008
• Unprecedented Coalition strike nails the Haqqani Network in North Waziristan, March 13, 2008
• Missile strike on al Qaeda meeting in South Waziristan kills 13, Feb. 28, 2008
• Senior al Qaeda leader Abu Laith al Libi killed in North Waziristan, Jan. 31, 2008
These reports, written in Langley VA tend to omit that civilians, women, children are maimed, burnt, killed, houses blown away - domestic animals killed.
Claimed kills of "bad guys" include 3 "senior al Qaeda operatives " in this year's strikes. Two Canadians of Arab origin were killed in a strike in strike in South Waziristan last weekend.
Abu Khabab al Masri, al Qaeda's bomb expert and weapons of mass destruction chief, was killed South Waziristan on July 28 which is odd because he was previously killed in a a U.S. airstrike on a Pakistani border village in January 2006.
The US Rewards for Justice Program had a $5 million bounty out for the capture of Khabab. Three other Egyptians were killed in the strike. Abu Mohammad Ibrahim bin Abi al Faraj al Masri, a religious leader, and Abdul Wahhab al Masri and Abu Islam al Masri.
They were all killed during a targeted strike on an al Qaeda safe house in the village of Zeralita in the Azam Warsak region of South Waziristan on July 28th .
Abu Sulayman Jazairi, al Qaeda's external operations chief, was killed in Bajaur on May 14th, he was one of the most wanted terrorists due to his experience, seniority, and expertise with bomb making, chemicals, and poisons.
Abu Laith al Libi, a senior commander in Afghanistan and the leader of the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group, was killed in North Waziristan on Jan. 28. (CNN report) see pic.