[Marxism] Operation Backfire

Marvin Gandall marvgandall at rogers.com
Wed Mar 24 07:53:24 MST 2004

The Pakistani army has been mauled and the Musharraf government is risking
civil war in its failed attempt to capture Ayman al-Zawahiri in the Pashtun
tribal region, reports today’s Asia Times.

American and Pakistani officials boasted last week that they had trapped a
“high value target”, understood to be al-Zawahiri, Osama bin Laden’s close
aide, in the Pashtun province of South Waziristan.

But the Times’ Pepe Escobar says bin Laden and al-Zawahiri crossed the
border into Afghanistan two months ago “when word was rife all over the
tribal areas about the upcoming spring offensive.”

Meanwhile, the Pakistani army, composed mainly of Punjabi conscripts, is
seen as an occupying army by the Pashtuns, and has behaved as such, shelling
villages and inflicting civilian casualties, and taking serious losses in
return, while the country’s powerful Islamist parties are mobilizing in
defence of the tribal revolt.

An accompanying report by Syed Saleem Shahzad describes the growing dissent
in the army ranks, and the rumoured involvement of Indian and Afghan
intelligence services seeking to exploit Musharraf’s difficulties.

Articles available on www.supportingfacts.com.

Sorry for any cross posting.

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