WAZIRISTAN Has NO Limit , Mind You! U.S. Army's busiest trauma center LOCATED in Afghanistan.Sorry for using military in Iraq but there was no choice: Bush
Troubled Galaxy Destroyed Dreams, Chapter 414
It was Oct 31, 1984, a day like any other with R.K. Dhawan, Indira Gandhi's special assistant, arriving at 1, Safdarjung Road at 8 a.m. to find the prime minister getting her famous tresses - with the distinctive streak of white rising from the centre - trimmed for a television interview. Click here for full story
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IB, RAW to probe into US Lashkar operative's 'Rahul' connection
Chidanand Rajghatta, TNN 30 October 2009, 01:05am IST
WASHINGTON: Several references to a ''Rahul'' made by Pakistani-American terror suspect Dave Headley aka Daaud Gilani in e-mail exchanges with
his Pakistani handlers in course of planning an attack in India has raised alarms in the security establishment about the intended target.
An Indian team comprising officials from the Intelligence Bureau (IB) and RAW (Research and Analysis Wing) will travel to the United States next week to question Headley, after an affidavit filed by the FBI showed up references to ''Rahul.'' US authorities have also sought cooperation from India to understand the full extent of the plot that involves Headley and his handlers in Pakistan.
In an affidavit filed in a Chicago court, the FBI refers to a July 8, 2009, e-mail in which Headley tells a man referred to as Lashkar-e-Taiba member A that ''I think when we get a chance we should re-visit our last location again and say hi to Rahul.'' According to the affidavit, following his arrest, Headley told investigators that ''Rahul'' refers to a prominent Indian actor with that first name.
Although there are a few Indian actors with the first name Rahul, there is apprehension that Headley may be trying to throw investigators off-track. Concern is high also because it is the first name of Rahul Gandhi, whose father and grandmother were both assassinated..
In response to Headley's mail the same day, the LeT member A says ''to see Rahul is a good idea coz have some work for you over there. Matters are good enough to move forward...'' On July 9, 2009, Headley responded: When you say ''move forward'' do you mean in the north direction or towards Rahul?'' to which the LeT handler replies, ''I mean towards Rahul.''
Headley's response is a series of questions to LeT A: 1. What is the status of the Northern Project, is it still postponed indefinitely? 2. The visit to Rahul's place, is it for checking out the real estate property like before or something different? Also is it exactly in Rahul's city or different one? 3. How long do you think I will need to stay at Rahul's place to complete this task? 4. Will I have to stay there continuously for a while or back and forth like before?
In the FBI affidavit, Special Agent Lorenzo Benedict tells the court that ''Based on my review of this and other communication, I believe that Headley had enquired of the LeT member A whether the Denmark project (to attack the newspaper that published Prophet Mohammed's cartoons) was on hold, and whether the visit to India that the LeT Member A had asked him to undertake was for the purpose of surveying targets for a new terrorist attack.''
Later on July 10, LeT member A responds to Headley's email, stating, in part, that ''There are some investment plans with me, not exactly at Rahul's city, but near that. Rest we can decide when meet according to your ease.''
Headley was arrested when he was on his way from Chicago to Philadelphia, from where the FBI says he was intending to proceed to Pakistan. According to the Bureau, he had already made several trips to Pakistan to meet his handlers and for training, and he may also have made trips to India for reconnaissance.
Special Agent Benedict's affidavit details further exchanges between Headley and the unnamed LeT member A as the Pakistani-American seeks more details about the next steps, time required etc, including despair inquiries about whether the ''Northern'' Danish attack was really being postponed.
''I understand these emails to reflect that beginning in July 2009, LeT member A was placing higher priority on using Headley to assist in planning a new attack in India rather than on completing the planned attack in Denmark,'' Special Agent Benedict told the court. ''After this time, it appears that Headley and Individual A continued the planning of an attack on (Ilyas) Kashmiri, rather than Lashkar e Taiba.''
Are we all militants, ask Kashmir's pre-paid mobile subscribers
Jammu/Srinagar: A wave of anger has swept through Jammu and Kashmir with the central government deciding to ban pre-paid mobile connections in the state from Sunday due to security concerns. Most angry are youths.
Even as the Kashmir government has promised to take up the issue with the centre, the 'walk and talk' generation in the state is furious that it has been clubbed with terrorists who misused pre-paid connections.
"Are we militants?" Shahid Khan, a student, asked in anger and frustration. "Are millions of pre-paid connection subscribers terrorists?" he asked. The decision to snap this service has resulted in total chaos among subscribers.
"It is strange that I should be punished because someone somewhere could be misusing the facility. This is unfortunate and condemnable," said Muzaffar Ahmad, 23, a college student in Srinagar.
There are around 3.8 million pre-paid connections in the state. Most of them are from Airtel (one million), and new companies have come into the state, like Tata Indicom, Idea, Air Cel, Reliance. They have made huge investments, and they too are angry. "This is a bad move," an official of a leading mobile service provider told IANS.
Most people, especially youth who have to deal with limited pocket money and prefer pre-paid connections, are very angry. "Until now we knew our limitations, how much to talk, if we go in for post-paid connections, that limit would be hard to know," said Sunita Sharma, a young working woman.
What surprises them is that the move comes right after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh visited the state promising more opportunities.
Khurshid Ahmed, 28, a student of Kashmir University, said: "On the one hand the government says we must become information savvy and use the latest technology to keep pace with competitors from other universities and now the same government is pushing us back by at least a decade."
Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram, during his visit to Kashmir, had hinted at banning pre-paid connections. The security concerns are rooted in the fact that the security forces were finding it difficult to trace the militants, who were passing on instructions to their cadres through mobile phones and also changing their SIM cards at will. Invariably, police found a number of SIM cards of various companies with the militants killed or captured during gunbattles.
"Pre-paid mobile connections had multiplied our challenges, and we were facing tough times in tracking the terror-guiding hands because they were having the power of mobile phones in their hands, besides guns," a senior police official said. But he refused to comment on the home ministry's blanket ban on the prepaid SIM cards.
Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) president Mehbooba Mufti has termed the move as "unfortunate" and sought the prime minister's intervention. "Pre-paid services should be restored," she said in a statement. The decision has also not gone down well with hundreds of Kashmiris engaged in the business of selling pre-paid cell phone connections here.
"We take sufficient documents to establish the identity of the subscriber before issuing the pre-paid SIM card and now since morning I have closed down my shop for fear that frustrated subscribers might manhandle me," said a cell phone SIM dealer in Srinagar who did not want to be named.
Asked Ramesh Chander, a businessman: "If this is happening to mobile service providers, what sort of a message is being conveyed to industrialists and prospective investors across the country? That Kashmir is a state where terrorism is as high as before the services were launched in the state in 2003?"
Justifying his decision on Iraq, former US President George W Bush today said dislodging of the "brutal dictator" Saddam Hussain was anecessity after 9/11 attacks but regretted that military had to be used to do so as there was no other "choice".
Bush, who had earned immense criticism for the war on Iraq launched in March 2003, rejected the suggestion that his action had led to radicalism among the Muslim community and insisted that the world and Iraq were "better off" now.
Protests, procession lead to traffic snarls across Indian Capital New Delhi on Saturday!A city court Saturday allowed the counsel of the 1984 anti-Sikh riots victims to examine the CD in which Congress leader Jagdish Tytler has been shown standing next to the body of former prime minister Indira Gandhi.Over 3,000 Sikhs were killed in the riots in various cities following the assassination of Indira Gandhi October 31, 1984.
U.S. Army's busiest trauma center LOCATED in Afghanistan!Soldiers are fighting to suppress the Taliban and win over the Afghan people!AFGAN People have NEVER been DEFEATED in History and Soviet Diintegration is CREDITED more to the Afgan stand OFF during Soviet Socialist Imperialism! US Imperialsim may BREATHE Easy as there happen no Super Power to help the Talibans! What if the Talibans targets the SOFT Targets , US Partners in the War Aignast Terror. Globlistion of Zionism and Hindutva may not Bail Out the Innocent Humanity Endangered!However, Days after the FBI busted Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba's plot to carry out terrorist attack in India using an American national,the United States asked its citizens to stay alert during their travel to India.
"The US Government continues to receive information that terrorist groups may be planning attacks in India," the State Department said in its latest travel alert on India. This replaces a similar travel alert issued by the State Department before the start of the festival season.
"Terrorists and their sympathisers have demonstrated their willingness and capability to attack targets where Americans or Westerners are known to congregate or visit," the Bureau of Consular Affairs of the State Department said.
Describing Hussain as a "brutal dictator" who posed a danger to the US, he said it had become more important for America to remove him after the 9/11 attacks.
Removal of Hussain was important as it was "felt" that Iraq possesses weapons of mass destruction and the then President was not allowing IAEA inspectors in, Bush said while addressing the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit in New delhi.
It is quite a good sign that Indian Prime Minister sounds SOUND Diplomatic as Prime Minister Manmohan Singh again signalled his desire to re-engage with Pakistan pointing to the need for a leadership in southAsia that was prepared to take a long-term view so that the future was not hostage to the past. As media reports.Emphasising that India sought peace and progress in the neighbourhood, the PM on Friday said the country's destiny was "intrinsically linked'' with that of its neighbours. Without naming Pakistan, Singh stated India wanted to resolve all outstanding issues with its neighbours through dialogue.
I never know how the Policy would shpae in as we always find ourselves in Diplomacy Disaster right from Nehruvian Foreign Policy and South Block alaways remained ONE EYED Doe!Though, Pakistan Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani today said Pakistan saw India's offer of talks "positively," saying solutions to problemsbetween the two countries cannot be found through wars.Welcoming his counterpart Manmohan Singh's offer of talks with Pakistan, Gilani said: "Wars are not the solution, dialogue is the only solution".
Waziristan Challenge posing great THREAT than the Sleeping Dragon beyond the Great Himalyas. Growing Anti US Anger and Escalating Taliban Menace in Pakistan may not ease a little bit even after Hillary Visit in pakistan. At the same time US Army getting Training in India to fight in Iraq would not enhance Indian Security Network despite CIA and Mossad help generous and NASA Suvillience, Nuclear Armament, Indo US Nuclear Deal, Hosting the Butcher BUSH and World bank Loans with longest ever shooping list for the Global Waeapon Industry. Zionist Hindutva Nationalism would not save us from Terror and Insurgency as the Back Lash against Monopolistic aggression in Free Market Democracy and Mass Destruction agenda of All Out Economic Reforms have Changed the Landscape as well as Humanscpe INFLICTED with war and Civil war.
WAZIRISTAN has no limit , mind you!
In New Delhi, Protests by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) workers, a religious procession and the India-Australia cricket match Saturday led to traffic snarls across the national capital.
"The persons who were seen in the CD like R.K. Dhawan (Indira Gandhi's secretary), Amitabh Bachchan (Bollywood star and close friend of the family) and some other senior political leaders were not examined by the investigation officer in the case. The entire CD looks fishy," Phulka told IANS.
In the morning, the 18-minute CD was shown in the chamber of the judge in the presence of Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) officials, Phulka and his team of lawyers. The court has now fixed the next hearing for further arguments Dec 1.
The CBI had, in the last hearing, said the witnesses, who deposed about the alleged role of Tytler in the anti-Sikh riots, were "not reliable". But recently another witness Jasbir Singh had said that Tytler, along with others, was involved in the attack at Gurdwara Pul Bangash in north Delhi and killed Thakur Singh and Badal Singh.
The probe agency will Saturday continue its argument on the version given by Jasbir Singh. The CBI had last month during the hearing also placed before the court audiovisual evidence showing that Tytler was near the body of assassinated prime minister Indira Gandhi at the time the murders of Thakur Singh and Badal Singh are alleged to have taken place.
The BJP workers demanding justice for 1984 anti-Sikh riots victims held protests around noon near Shyam Lal College in east Delhi, Janakpuri in west Delhi, Rani Bagh in northwest Delhi and Kalkaji in south Delhi.
"Protests resulted in traffic jams from 30 minutes to one hour in all these areas. It also had a spillover effect on all the major roads connecting these areas," a traffic police official told IANS.
The anti-Sikh riots started after the assassination of former prime minister Indira Gandhi Oct 31, 1984. Over 3,000 Sikhs were killed in the carnage which lasted three days.
Areas like Ashok Vihar, Azad Market and Chandni Chowk were affected due to a procession to mark the birth anniversary of Guru Nanak. The procession started from Gurudwara Sis Ganj in the heart of Chandni Chowk around 10 a.m.
The nearly 10-hour procession passed through Subash Marg, Red Fort crossing, H.C. Sen Marg, Town Hall, Nai Sarak, Fatehpuri, Church Mission Road, Lahori Gate Chowk, Pul Mithai, Azad Market, DCM Chowk, Rohtak Road, Rani Jhansi Road, Faiz Road, Baraf Khana Chowk, Mori Gate Chowk, Roshanara Road, Ghanta Ghar Chowk, Nangia Park, Swami Narayan Marg, Roop Nagar Chowk, GT Road, Ashok Vihar Flyover and Azadpur 'H' point.
"Minor traffic snarls were reported from most of the places. We had already advised road users to follow the directions given by the traffic personnel to ensure smooth movement and to minimise traffic dislocation and disruption," the official added.
The third one-day international cricket match being played between India and Australia added to the traffic problem, as the stadium always falls short of parking space.
AFGANISTAN, the nation prepares for the Nov. 7 presidential runoff amid growing tensions after allegations of fraud marred the August election.
26/11: Pak court declares Kasab, 13 others 'absconders'
Islamabad: A Pakistani anti-terror court conducting the trial of seven suspects in connection with the Mumbai attacks on Saturday declared 14 other accused, including Ajmal Kasab, as "absconders" and adjourned the matter till November 7.
During today's proceedings, Judge Malik Muhammad Akram Awan declared 14 other suspects linked to the attacks -- including Kasab, the lone terrorist captured alive by Indian authorities during the strikes -- as "absconders," sources said.
Details of the other 13 were not immediately available. Khwaja Sultan, the lawyer representing LeT operations commander Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi -- one of the seven suspects arrested by Pakistani authorities, said that Judge Awan M adjourned the case till next Saturday.
Today's proceedings were dominated by reservations expressed by the accused over the manner in which they were indicted during a hearing held on October 10. Judge Baqir Ali Rana, who was earlier conducting the trial, had formally charged the accused in the absence of their lawyers.
The accused, who have declined to plead guilty or not guilty, today again protested about the manner in which they were charged, sources said.
"I really like Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. The Prime Minister is a wise leader."
This is what former US President George W Bush had to say today about Singh with whom he had reached a landmark civil nuclear agreement which had led to the end of 34-year isolation of India in nuclear commerce.
Bush, who was at his humorous best, complimented Singh a day after the Indian leader described him as a "great friend of India".
Singh, who yesterday hosted a lunch in honour of the visiting dignitary, had told him a year back that "people of India love you".
Bush, who showered praise on Singh at the HT Leadership Summit here, described the economic liberalisation process initiated by India in 1991 when Singh was the Finance Minister as one of the two important events of that year that led to transformation of Indo-US ties.
Amid concerns in India over continuing American aid to Pakistan, former US president George W. Bush Saturday said it was in New Delhi's interest that Washington has 'a friendship' with Islamabad.
'It is in India's interest that the US has a friendship with Pakistan,' Bush said at the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit here.
He was responding to a question over the billions of dollars given to Pakistan by the US as aid which is suspected to have been used against building a war machinery against Indian interests.
Bush recalled that after 9/11 attacks, then US secretary of state Colin Powell had spoken to Pakistan president Pervez Musharraf and asked him to choose between the Taliban and the US.
Bush said Pakistan chose the US and said extremists were a threat to their own democracy.
Asserting that force alone can deal with such terrorists, Bush said: 'I don't think you can negotiate with extremists.'
'It's in our interest to stay engaged with Pakistan,' he stressed.
Bush said both the US and India were engaged in an ideological battle against extremists who kill innocents.
Expressing his 'deepest condolences' to the victims of the 26/11 Mumbai terror attack and their families, Bush said like 9/11 in America, the attack served as a 'moment of clarity' in India.
'Both our nations are engaged in an ideological struggle,' he said. The two countries seek to 'advance our values of liberty, tolerance and hope'.
Meanwhile,President Obama has asked the Pentagon's top generals to provide him with more options for troop levels in Afghanistan, two U.S. officials said late Friday, with one adding that some of the alternatives would allow Obama to send fewer new troops than the roughly 40,000 requested by his top commander. As Washington Post reports:
Obama met with the Joint Chiefs of Staff at the White House on Friday, holding a 90-minute discussion that centered on the strain on the force after eight years of war in two countries. The meeting -- the first of its kind with the chiefs of the Navy, Army, Marine Corps and Air Force, who were not part of the president's war council meetings on Afghanistan in recent weeks -- prompted Obama to request another such meeting before he announces a decision on sending additional troops, the officials said.
The military chiefs have been largely supportive of a resource request by Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal, the top U.S. and NATO commander in Afghanistan, that would by one Pentagon estimate require the deployment of 44,000 additional troops. But opinion among members of Obama's national security team is divided, and he now appears to be seeking a compromise solution that would satisfy both his military and civilian advisers.
Obama is expected to receive several options from the Pentagon about troop levels next week, according to the two officials, who discussed the deliberations on the condition of anonymity because they are not authorized to speak publicly.
Which strategy to embrace?
Before he can determine troop levels, his advisers have said, he must decide whether to embrace a strategy focused heavily on counterinsurgency, which would require additional forces to protect population centers, or one that makes counterterrorism the main focus of U.S. efforts in the country, which would rely on relatively fewer American troops.
One option under review involves a blend of the two approaches, featuring an emphasis on counterterrorism in the north and some parts of western Afghanistan as well as an expanded counterinsurgency effort in the south and east, one of the officials said. Obama has also asked for a province-by-province review of the country to determine which areas can by managed effectively by local leaders.
The president appears committed to adding at least 10,000 to 15,000 troops in Afghanistan in an effort to bolster the training of Afghan army and police officers in the country. Current plans call for the United States to double the size of the Afghan army and police forces to about 400,000 in the hope that they can take over security responsibilities.
In meeting with the military chiefs, Obama heard their assessment of the how prepared the services are to handle a new commitment. "Each chief discussed the state of their own service, how they are doing today and what the long-term consequences will be for each of their services," an administration official said. The military advisers also put the troop deployments in the context of the rest of their global deployments, including in Iraq.
It was not a "recommendations meeting," with concrete options of how to proceed, the official said. That will presumably come in the next such meeting, which has not been scheduled.
The timing of Obama's decision on Afghanistan remains up in the air. But his request for another meeting with the military chiefs -- and the expectation that he will meet again with his top national security advisers before reaching a conclusion -- may leave him too little time to decide the issue before he travels to Asia on Nov. 11. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton plans to be overseas for much of that time, except for a brief stint at home from Wednesday to Friday, giving Obama little opportunity to convene his war council in person. It appears increasingly likely that Obama will not announce his new Afghanistan strategy until after returning to the United States on Nov. 20.
Obama has come under criticism from Republicans, notably former vice president Richard B. Cheney, for deliberating so long, but his advisers have said he is determined to get the decision right rather than satisfy his critics.
FBI busts LeT plot to use American for attacks in India, Denmark
Chidanand Rajghatta, TNN 28 October 2009, 01:01am IST
WASHINGTON: US investigating agencies have busted a plot by the Pakistan-based Lashkar e Taiba (LeT) to use an American national for a terrorist
attacks in Denmark and India. ( Watch Video )
The man, identified as David Coleman Headley, was one of two suspects arrested early this month by FBI's Joint Terrorism Task Force at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport before he boarded a flight to Philadelphia, from where he was intending to travel to Pakistan to meet Pakistani terrorist handlers, including the fugitive Ilyas Kashmiri.
Headley's partner in the terror plot, which included plans to attack the Danish newspaper that published cartoons of Prophet Mohammed, was a Pakistani-Canadian named Tahawwur Hussain Rana, also a resident of Chicago who was arrested by the FBI on October 18.
According to the FBI affidavit filed in a Chicago court, Headley was in close contact with Ilyas Kashmiri and several unidentified leaders of LeT, two of whom are identified as "LeT member A" and "Individual A." He had visited Pakistan before to meet LeT handlers and was returning there ostensibly to finalize plans for strikes.
"In July and August 2009, Headley exchanged a series of e-mails with LeT Member A, including an exchange in which Headley asked if the Denmark project was on hold, and whether a visit to India that LeT member A had asked him to undertake was for the purpose of surveilling targets for a new terrorist attack," the FBI said in its affidavit.
"These e-mails reflect that LeT Member A was placing a higher priority on using Headley to assist in planning a new attack in India than on completing the planned attack in Denmark," it said.
Although the affidavit named Kashmiri, it did not identify others involved in the plot, referring to them as LeT member A and Individual A. It said LeT member A "has substantial influence and responsibility within the organization" and his "identity is known to the government."
While one reason for the FBI not naming the two other suspects could be that they are Pakistani nationals, the Bureau indicated that it received cooperation from foreign investigating agencies.
"Information developed during this investigation was shared with our foreign partners as we worked together to mitigate these threats. This case is a reminder that the threat posed by international terrorist organizations is global in nature and requires constant vigilance at home and abroad," said David Kris, Assistant Attorney General for National Security.
But there was no word about whether the US authorities would persuade Pakistanis to turn over or extradite the suspects, much less prosecute them in Pakistan.
The latest terror plot, one of dozens involving Pakistanis or Pakistani-origin suspects across the world, is bound to complicate monitoring in India because of the use of an American proxy and the volume of US nationals traveling to India.
US agencies have long suspected that Al Qaeda is trying to use western operatives to strike in the United States, but this is the first time LeT is known to have drafted an American national for possible strikes in India.
Although he currently carries a western name, Headley's original name was said to be Daood Gilani, which he reportedly got changed legally in 2006.
Rana, a Canadian citizen of Pakistani origin, lived mostly in Chicago, where he owned several businesses, including First World Immigration Services, which has offices on Devon Avenue in Chicago, as well as in New York and Toronto. He also owned a farm outside Chicago which provided halal meat for Muslim customers, as well as a grocery store, the FBI said.
According to FBI, in January 2009 and July 2009, Headley traveled to Copenhagen, Denmark, and Rana allegedly arranged portions of his travel.
In early September, Headley and Rana took a lengthy car ride during which they discussed the activities of the other individuals, including past terrorist acts, and Headley discussed with Rana five actions involving targets that expressly included Denmark.
According to the FBI affidavit, Headley at times has claimed to be a consultant with or representative of Rana's business, First World Immigration Services, but appeared to perform little if any actual work for the business. Despite his apparent lack of financial resources and substantial employment, Headley traveled extensively since the second half of 2008, including multiple trips to Pakistan and various countries in Europe.
"Postings to an internet group for graduates of a military school in the Pakistani town of Hasan Abdal (a group that refers to itself as "abdalians"), reflect that both Rana and Headley have participated in the group and referred to their attendance at that school," the FBI said.
It was not clear if it is a school run by the Pakistani military or if it is a terrorist training camp.
Beginning in late 2008, Headley corresponded extensively with Individual A and LeT Member A regarding what they referred to in coded communications as the "Mickey Mouse Project," "mmp," and "the northern project," according to the affidavit. The Mickey Mouse Project allegedly involved planning for one or more attacks at facilities and employees of Morgenavisen Jyllands-Posten, a Danish newspaper that in 2005 published cartoons depicting the Prophet Mohammed, to which many Muslims took great offense.
In October 2008, Headley allegedly posted a message to the "abdalians" internet discussion group stating that "I feel disposed towards violence for the offending parties,"referring to the Danish cartoonists and others who he identified "as making fun of Islam." Using coded language, Rana, Headley, Individual A and LeT Member A allegedly have referred to this plot, as well as discussions of other targets, as "investments," "projects," "business," and "action," and have described their hopes for success both in terms of receiving religious awards, as well as getting "rich," "richer," and making "profit." Between August 2008 and Dec.7, 2008, Headley sent multiple email messages from internet addresses locatedin Karachi and Lahore in Pakistan, the FBI said.
According to the FBI affidavit, following his visit to Denmark, Headley traveled to Pakistan to meet with Individual A. During this visit, Headley traveled with Individual A to Pakistan's FATA region and met with Kashmiri. After returning to Chicago in August 2009, Headley allegedly used coded language to repeatedly inquire if Individual A had been in touch with Kashmiri regarding planning for the attack, and expressing concern that Individual A's communications with Kashmiri had been cut off. In conversations with Rana and Individual A in August and September 2009, Headley indicated that if the "doctor" (said to be a reference to Kashmiri) and his people were unable to assist, then Headley would perform the planned operation himself.
In September 2009, after initial press reports indicated that Kashmiri had been killed in a drone attack in Pakistan, Headley and Individual A allegedly had a series of coded conversations in which they discussed the reports of Kashmiri's death and what it meant for the projects they were planning. Individual A sought to reassure and encourage Headley, telling him, among other things, that "this is business sir; these types of things happen." On Sept. 20, 2009, Headley told a family member words to the effect that he had spoken to Rana and they agreed that "business must go on." In a Sept. 21, 2009, telephone conversation, Individual A indicated to Headley that Kashmiri was alive and "doing well."
In a subsequent conversation on Sept. 30, 2009, Individual A again assured Headley that Kashmiri, whom he referred to as "Pir Sahib," was "absolutely all right" and had not gotten "married," which was code for being killed.
Headley asked Individual A if it was possible to now have a meeting with Kashmiri and Individual A responded that Kashmiri "just today, was asking about you" (Headley).
Ilyas Kashmiri, a former commando said to be connected to the Pakistani military's Special Services Group, was first reported killed in a US drone attack last month. He subsequently surfaced alive and gave an interview to a Pakistani reporter two weeks ago in which he swore to wreak havoc on India and the United States.
Giving 'tough love' to Pak, Hillary rejects mediation in Kashmir
Chidanand Rajghatta, TNN 31 October 2009, 03:51pm IST
WASHINGTON: US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton concluded a turbulent visit to Pakistan on Friday by rejecting Islamabad's persistent thesis
that terrorism could not be contained unless the Kashmir issue was resolved. She basically advised Pakistan to abandon the path of extremism and normalize relations with India using the trade route, without obsessing on disputes.
While promising to support resumption of dialogue with India on all issues, Clinton repeatedly spurned Pakistani efforts to draw Washington into the process, suggesting such an effort may be counterproductive.
"It is clearly in Pakistan's and India's interest to resolve [their dispute]. But it isn't to us to dictate a solution. That wouldn't last a minute," Clinton said on the show "Our Voice," one of several media engagements she had in Pakistan on an extra-ordinarily public and combative three-day visit.
Pakistan's argument, which New Delhi finds insidious, is that terrorism flourishes in the region because of unresolved issues with India, including the Kashmir problem. In not so many words, Washington is now saying Pakistan's problems go far deeper than that, and Clinton sought to drive home the message at several engagements.
Quoting d'Toqueville at one point, Clinton advised Pakistanis to develop ''habits of the heart'' that respected other people, tolerated other view points, and developed minority rights. In several nuances remarks, she suggested Pakistan had allowed extremists have a run of the country and that was the root cause of the problems the country is facing.
Clinton repeatedly refused to be baited by questions on India or comparisons and parity-seeking with India. She ignored charges that the US had ''bent the rules'' to offer India a favorable nuclear deal and politely declined pleas to give Pakistan the same deal, while offering help in other energy sectors.
She also dismissed Pakistan's charges that New Delhi was engaging in subversive activities in Balochistan, saying ''we just have no evidence to this effect,'' and largely ignored some sulfurous observations about India, including a comment from one female journalist that ''even paranoids have enemies and we have an enemy right across our border.''
The angry remarks played into the new US line that Pakistan's India phobia is exaggerated and misplaced and is not shared by the rest of the world. It was also reflected in Clinton's media engagements in Pakistan. At every event featuring Pakistani interlocutors, there were carping questions about the perceived U.S tilt towards India, the nuclear deal. Kashmir, water dispute etc. In five interviews she gave to the western media (PBS, NBC, CNN, CBS, and BBC) during the visit there wasn't a single India reference.
Broadly, America's top diplomat seemed to tread the emerging US line that largely de-links India from Pakistan's neuroses and engages it at a different level, a policy underscored by a state visit to Washington DC by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh three weeks from now. But more than once, Clinton also indicated that Washington will be happier if New Delhi resumed dialogue with Pakistan.
While Clinton was visiting Pakistan, India's National Security Advisor M K Narayanan was in the US capital tying up details of the visit that officials said would aim to consolidate the gains in the US-India ties in the past decade. Also in town was Education Minister Kapil Sibal, aiming to put academic exchanges on top of the agenda for the PM's visit when a US-India Education Council is likely to be announced.
Clinton's Pakistan trip attracted wide coverage in the US, more than a US Secretary of State's travels typically would. But Clinton herself said at one event that its seldom that a Secretary of State spends three days in a country, and that too with such a large number of public engagements and interactions. While she ostensibly intended it to be a charm offensive, she ended up conveying ''tough love.'' Not that she was apologetic about it. ''I did not come here to make happy talk,'' she said in one interview, although she was gracious and good-humored.
But as much as three-day SoS visits are rare, even more unusual was an under-reported three-hour meeting she had with Pakistan's army chief Pervez Ashfaq Kiyani and the ISI chief, Gen. Shuja Pasha. The meeting came soon after Clinton implicitly accused Pakistan's military and intelligence services of being in cahoots with terrorists, but it was also an indication who the US thinks can deliver the goods in Pakistan.
Q&A: Pakistan's Waziristan challenge
Pakistan's army has begun a ground offensive in the volatile tribal region of South Waziristan. The army has been massing troops near the militants' stronghold for months. But what lies in wait for the army as it finally takes on the Taliban on their home terrain?
Where is Waziristan and what is it like?
Waziristan is a mountainous region in north-west Pakistan, bordering Afghanistan.
It is part of the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata), a semi-autonomous region where the central government exercises limited control through a political agent.
For administrative purposes it is divided into two "agencies" - North Waziristan and South Waziristan.
Winters are harsh, making large tracts of the already inhospitable terrain almost inaccessible.
The tribal society found in North and South Waziristan is extremely socially conservative with a fierce reputation as "warriors".
North Waziristan is dominated by the Wazir tribe. This tribe also extends into South Waziristan and makes up one-third of its population. The remaining two-thirds of South Waziristan's population are Mehsuds.
Why is Waziristan a target?
South Waziristan and the surrounding region have been described by US officials as "the most dangerous place on earth".
Profile: Hakimullah Mehsud
Obituary: Baitullah Mehsud
Many analysts believe the area could harbour some of the world's most wanted men - including al-Qaeda leader Osama Bin Laden.
It was the home of former Taliban chief Baitullah Mehsud, who was killed in a suspected US drone strike in August 2009. It is also home to his successor, the current Pakistani Taliban leader, Hakimullah Mehsud.
North and South Waziristan form a lethal militant belt from where insurgents have launched attacks across north-west Pakistan as well as into parts of eastern Afghanistan.
South Waziristan is considered to be the first significant sanctuary for Islamic militants outside Afghanistan since 9/11. It also has numerous training camps for suicide bombers.
Pakistan's government is under considerable pressure from the US to tackle militancy there.
Analysts also say dislodging al-Qaeda-linked Uzbek and Arab militants in the area is an important goal.
What has happened so far?
The Pakistani army has maintained a brigade headquarters in the Wana region of South Waziristan since 2004.
But since May 2009 troops have been massing in large numbers in the semi-tribal areas on the periphery of Waziristan.
In the past few months the Pakistani army, working with local paramilitary forces such as the Frontier Corps, has launched some artillery and air strikes against Taliban militants.
SENIOR MILITANTS KILLED
2 October: Reports that Tahir Yuldashev, Uzbek militant chief was killed in August drone attack
29 September: Irfan Shamankhel, close to Taliban leader, killed in drone strike
28 September: Kalimullah Mehsud, Taliban leader's Hakimullah's brother, killed in clash in South Waziristan
15 September: Top militant Ilyas Kashmiri killed by missile in N Waziristan
6 August: Baitullah Mehsud, Taliban leader killed in suspected US drone strike in S Waziristan
Now or never for Waziristan push?
'Feared' Uzbek militant
But until now the army has said it wanted to surround the militants and use air power and artillery to ''soften them up".
This is in contrast to its recent campaign in the Swat valley where it suddenly began a three-month ground offensive in the summer of 2009 and largely succeeded in driving out Taliban fighters entrenched there.
People have been fleeing the Waziristan area for some months in anticipation of fighting.
The US has also been involved in attacks on militants in Waziristan, where suspected drone strikes have killed a number of senior Taliban militants in the region in recent months.
It was one such missile attack which killed Taliban chief Baitullah Mehsud at a family compound in South Waziristan.
What are the challenges of operating in South Waziristan?
The harsh mountainous terrain is often cited as a major challenge for the army. The gullies, ravines and high mountain trails make arduous going and provide many hiding places for militants.
Knowledge of the terrain is vital - and in this respect the militants have the advantage.
However, the BBC's M Ilyas Khan in Islamabad says that the terrain in the Swat valley, where the army took the battle to the Taliban, was more difficult than that found in South Waziristan because it is more densely forested.
The Malakand division which includes the Swat valley is also a larger area than that in which any Waziristan offensive is likely to take place.
Weather will play a role. Snow is likely to blanket parts of the region from early December - particularly the Makeen area which is a Mehsud stronghold.
This is likely to pose a problem for militants and troops alike. However, the cold has not prevented the army from launching operations in South Waziristan in the past.
What might be a deciding factor is the militarised psyche of society in Waziristan. The Wazir and Mehsud tribes are often described by analysts as "born soldiers" willing to fight to the death.
There are two divisions - or about 30,000 soldiers - of Pakistan's army already deployed on the edge of Waziristan. In addition the Frontier Corps - the paramilitary force made up of recruits from tribal areas - is likely to support army operations.
The number of militants is far harder to estimate. An army spokesman recently estimated their strength at between 10,000 and 20,000 fighters.
In South Waziristan Hakimullah Mehsud heads what is thought to be the largest militant force with an estimated strength of more than 15,000 armed men - although the "hard core" of his fighters is much smaller.
The western stretch bordering Afghanistan is the territory of the Ahmedzai Wazir tribe. The current operation is likely to be confined to the Mehsud area.
Analysts say there are also at least several hundred foreign, mainly Uzbek, fighters in South Wazirstan.
What tactics are being deployed?
The army says it has sent its troops and artillery into the region from the north, east and west.
The army appears to be heading towards the Mehsud stronghold of Makeen.
If the military goes in with full force, the militants are likely to disperse rather than attempt to hold territory, analysts say.
But so far they have been reported to be putting up resistance. Militants have also destroyed an important telecommunications tower.
Analysts say the militants will almost certainly engage in guerrilla warfare. With their knowledge of the terrain they are likely to launch ambushes as has been the case in previous assaults.
Reports say the militants are already using tunnel networks and booby traps.
But a lot depends on the tactics the army deploys from now on. Previously, the military has not had a clear strategy when venturing into Waziristan.
It remains to be seen if that is the case this time round.
The army would have to hold the roads and the main towns. Currently the Mehsud-dominated centres of Ladha, Makeen and Sararogha are virtual no-go areas.
A primary military target would be to take control of the heights and put up outposts.
And they are likely to continue their policy of going after mid- and high-ranking Taliban commanders.
What has happened in past encounters?
Waziristan has a long tradition of resisting outside interference.
WAZIRISTAN ASSAULTS AND PEACE DEALS
March - April 2004: Two-week assault where military suffered heavy casualties, ending in peace deal with militant Nek Mohammad
January - Feb 2005: Peace deal with Taliban leader Baitullah Mehsud ends significant army presence there
December 2007 - January 2008 - Army operation in Mehsud area partially successful but ended in peace deal with Baitulalh Mehsud
October 2009 - Army launches offensive
From the 1860s onwards, British forces made gruelling expeditions into the area following audacious attacks from Waziristan tribesmen in British-ruled territory.
More than a century later, it is no easier for the Pakistani army.
In 2004 the Pakistani army suffered heavily at the hands of Wazir-affiliated militants.
There is a possibility that a military offensive against the Mehsud group in South Waziristan could draw into the conflict militant groups based in the Wazir tribal areas of South and North Waziristan.
These groups are currently part of an al-Qaeda-affiliated network who have so far concentrated on fighting inside Afghanistan. They have "peace agreements" with the Pakistani army.
Can Pakistan hold on to South Waziristan?
Even if Pakistan's military is successful this time round against the militants, it will still be faced with the challenge of ensuring they do not get a foothold in the region again.
Mehsud tribesman are sometimes considered to be sympathetic to the Pakistani Taliban. Many are seen as unsupportive of the government offensive.
Taliban leader Hakimullah Mehsud and his predecessor Baitullah Mehsud are both of the Mehsud clan.
Analysts suggest that the army may have to maintain a significant presence in the region in order to preserve a military advantage. This would be a significant commitment of resources.
Officials from the region also suggest that this may be the time to integrate the semi-autonomous tribal areas into the rest of the country.
But Pakistan continued the British tradition of indirect government for a reason: the people of these areas feel independent in many respects.
Another way of seeking to foster stability in the area may be to pour in development and reconstruction funds.
Pakistanis too scared to leave home, many want to flee country
Omer Farooq Khan, TNN 27 October 2009, 01:44am IST
SLAMABAD: Peshawar-based Mustafa Kamal has had enough: he has just got his12-year-old son freed from a band of criminals in the lawless tribal
Internally displaced people flee
Internally displaced people fleeing a military offensive in South Waziristan. (Reuters)
area of Khyber agency by paying a ransom. He has left a lucrative job with Pakistan's telecommunication department and now has the immigartion papers for Canada ready for his entire family.
``I'm lucky to have found my son alive. But I won't take any more risk. Life has become extremely dangerous — it's not worth living here. Enough'senough,'' says Kamal.
For a country badly bloodied by a wave of suicide attacks (at least eight this month alone), the next tragedy appears to be collapse of governance. The Pakistani state is pitted against a wide array of militant groups across the country in a situation teetering on the brink of a civil war. And the chasm between the government and the people seems to be growing by the day.
The popular perception is that Pakistan is fighting the US war against terror. Many people in the lawless North West Frontier Province say Pakistan has been sold to the US piece by piece. Under coercion, they argue, Pakistan has started a war that has consumed its economy, national security, and has torn apart its social fabric.
``Our national integrity is at risk. I wish not to see the end of Pakistan in my lifetime. It is not yet too late for Pakistan to return from the precipice of national suicide. Pakistan must take a u-turn and preempt the civil war. Pakistan must say an emphatic no to the US,'' says Rabnawaz Khan, a former Pakistani diplomat, stressing that an internally torn Pakistan does not weaken but strengthens militants.
The civil unrest has spilled into many parts, giving rise to fear psychosis among citizens. So much so that when twin blasts rocked Islamabad's Islamic University on October 20, many did not believe that it was militants' handiwork. Instead, they blamed ``indistinct forces out to discredit Islam or weaken Pakistan''.
That attack led the authorities to take an unprecedented step of closing down all schools, colleges and other training institutions in the country. ``The law and order situation has only worsened since the military operations against the Taliban started. How can we believe that things will normalize by carrying out a big operation in Waziristan? I think the repercussions are going to be more blasts and suicide attacks,'' said Palwasha Zia, a third year student of Home Economics in Peshawar.
``People are very scared. Every time I go to market, I worry about blasts. We are being targeted and our life has become very difficult. We are hoping the situation will get better. What else can we do?'' says Shaheen Akhtar, a deputy provost of Peshawar University.
October has been the cruelest month. Militants have struck UN offices, police buildings, army headquarters in Rawalpindi and ambushed security forces. The government response has been on expected lines: it swiftly sent troops to battle the entrenched militants in trouble-torn South Waziristan and beefed up security in all major cities. Reportedly, there were at least 72 check posts at entry and exit points around sensitive installations in Islamabad before these attacks. Now, the check points have been increased up to 300 in the federal capital.
Has it helped? Margalla Road, the most expensive and posh area of Islamabad, has almost been turned into a fortress, with concrete barricades, security pickets and barbed wires installed in most of the places. The residents say driving inside the capital has become extremely difficult as they are checked several times a day during routine work. ``Establishing security pickets in residential areas and check points have not resolved the issue of law and order; rather the situation has further deteriorated,'' said a traffic police official in Islamabad's Blue area, wishing not to be named.
Just two days after the attack on Islamic university that killed seven people, suspected militants shot dead a senior Pakistani army officer of brigadier rank and a soldier in Islamabad on Wednesday, suggesting militants are shifting tactics in the face of a sweeping army drive in their South Waziristan stronghold.
``First, it was Peshawar. Then Islamabad and Karachi, and now Lahore and Rawalpindi. When you live in a place which is under threat of continuous attacks, you'll have to think twice before you step out of your house. The scare among people is visible — there are fewer people out on streets,'' says Mujeeb-ur Rehman, a news anchor in Islamabad-based TV station.
The frequent terror attacks have greatly damaged the business climate. Nasir Dawood, who ran a boutique shop in Rawalpindi's Raja Bazaar till last week has finally shut shop. ``My business was badly damaged in the last one year. Scared customers don't come for shopping. To avoid any further losses, I had no option,'' Nasir said.
Habibullah Zahid, another businessman who owns four restaurants in Peshawar, has shifted his family to Islamabad to escape the constant threats of militants. ``Though my business was affected, I left Peshawar due to threats to my life. A group of militants or criminals in the Khyber tribal area has made it a habit to make threatening calls, demanding money in millions. I could no more give in to their demands,'' says Zahid.
Clinton ends tough Pakistan trip
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has been meeting tribal leaders in north-west Pakistan on the last day of a testing visit to the country.
During her three-day trip Mrs Clinton hoped to strengthen ties between the US and Pakistan and tried to address a rising tide of anti-American feeling.
In an interview with the BBC she urged Pakistanis to "realise the connection" between al-Qaeda and the Taliban.
But her arrival was overshadowed by a deadly bombing in the city of Peshawar.
More than 100 people died when a car bomb exploded in a busy market on Wednesday.
The BBC's Jill McGivering says that a great deal of anger in Pakistan is focused on the US - widely seen as interfering and destabilising Pakistan for its own ends.
Kim Ghattas, BBC News, Islamabad
Hillary Clinton, reaching out one more time to Pakistan, is working to overcome tensions in a relationship she has described as scarred.
On her third day here and after countless roundtables and town hall meetings it appeared people were starting to be a bit more receptive. But in a BBC interview she acknowledged that challenges remained. Washington wants Pakistan to go after al-Qaeda and the hardcore Afghan Taliban.
Mrs Clinton leaves Pakistan encouraged by what she heard in official meetings but very much aware of the deep-seated mistrust of America here. Washington doesn't necessarily want to be loved here but it does need to manage the tension.
Mrs Clinton's tone was mainly appeasing, our correspondent says, as she lavished praise on the army for its efforts to fight militancy.
Mrs Clinton also faced America's critics when she addressed a group of belligerent students in Lahore.
But speaking to Pakistani newspaper editors in Lahore on Thursday evening, she said she found it hard to believe that nobody in the Pakistani government knew where al-Qaeda was hiding in the country and "couldn't get them" if they wanted.
In an interview with the BBC, Mrs Clinton clarified her comments and the US view of the Pakistan government's commitment to combating militancy.
"Of course we are very encouraged to see what the government is doing. At the same time, it is just a fact that al-Qaeda had sought refuge in Pakistan after the US and our allies went after them because of the attack on 9/11," she said.
"And we want to encourage everyone, not just the Pakistan government or the military but Pakistani citizens to realise the connection between al-Qaeda and these Taliban extremists who are threatening Pakistan. They are part of a syndicate of terror."
Hillary Clinton in Lahore
Pakistan's growing anti-US anger
Mrs Clinton said she was "very impressed by the resolve" of the Pakistani leadership in stamping out the militant threat.
But Mrs Clinton came face-to-face with many of the difficulties that have blighted Pakistan in recent weeks. On the day of her arrival, a massive car bomb obliterated a market in Peshawar.
It was just the latest in a series of attacks on civilian and military targets across the country - as Pakistan pursues an anti-Taliban offensive in the tribal region of South Waziristan.
Resentment has been further stoked by a US bill which grants aid to Pakistan - but on certain conditions.
Our correspondent adds that it would be hard to imagine a more hostile and sceptical audience for a US secretary of state.
Mrs Clinton acknowledged there was what she called a trust deficit towards the United States in Pakistan because of past policies.
But she said she was working to change that by reaching out to ordinary Pakistanis.
Mrs Clinton is due in the Middle East at the weekend to meet Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.
Don't politicise my Arunachal visit, Dalai tells China
TOKYO: Ahead of his proposed visit to Arunachal Pradesh, the Dalai Lama today hit out at China for opposing his trip to the state saying it was
"politicising too much" the issue as he was going there solely for teaching. ( Watch Video )
The Tibetan spiritual leader said he was surprised and saddened by China's criticism of his visit to Tawang monastery in Arunachal Pradesh.
"I was surprised at China's criticism. If my visit creates problem, I am very sad, that's all," the Tibetan leader, on a visit here told journalists, implying that he intends to go ahead with his visit on November 8.
"The Chinese government politicises too much wherever I go. Where I go is not political," the 74-year old Nobel Peace Prize winner said.
Contending that he was travelling to Arunachal in connection with teaching his beliefs, the Dalai Lama said Tawang held great memories for him as this was his first stop 50 years ago when he was forced to flee Tibet, Kyodo said.
India and China were recently engaged in a verbal spat over Dalai Lama's proposed visit to Arunachal over which China lays claim.
China objected to his visit, but India rejected the objection, saying the Tibetan leader was free to travel anywhere in India.
New Delhi, however, has made it clear that the Dalai Lama is not supposed to indulge in political activities or discuss India-China boundary question.
PTI 2 hours ago
"I am travelling to Arunachal for purpose of teaching my beliefs. Tawang hold great memories for me as this was my first stop 50 years ago when I was forced to flee Tibet," the Tibetan spiritual leader said.
PTI 30 minutes ago
A day after militants carried out a revenge attack on her house, Rukhsana Kausar, who became a household name after she slayed a LeT ultra recently, said youths should be imparted training in fighting terror.
PTI 1 hour ago
India issued 58,500 business visas to Chinese nationals in '08. "Those visas might have been utilised by unskilled and semi-skilled workers," MoS for external affairs said.