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Islam,Terrorism and Jihad

Six years after being driven from power, the Taliban are demonstrating a resilience and a ferocity that are raising alarm here, in Washington, and in other NATO capitals, and they are engendering a fresh round of soul-searching. How has this relatively ragtag insurgency managed to keep the world’s most powerful armies at bay? A New York Times report.

 

In the past seven years, the US government has given over $10 billion to Pakistan for the specific purpose of fighting extremists and helping in the war in Afghanistan.Yet, Pakistan has slowly descended into an ever-widening whirlpool of extremist violence, with its western region bordering Afghanistan becoming a virtual safe haven for extremists...Experts say that the huge funding has largely gone to shore up Pakistan's military facilities and line the pockets of the military establishment.

 

Hundreds of thousands of Shia Muslims congregated in Islamabad today and staged a sit-in in front of the Parliament House to register a strong protest against the continuous atrocities being perpetrated against the innocent momineen of Parachanar , Dera Ismail Khan , Taank , areas of Kurram agency, Quetta and the most recent target killings of mominin witnessed in Karachi.

 

An earlier report from International Herald Tribune, “Shiites flee enclave in Pakistan after Taliban lay siege” by Jane Perlez and Pir Zubair Shah, Islamabad.

 

The Pakistani military establishment will oppose any move that could potentially reduce its powers, or the powers of the ISI. Given the architecture of Pakistan’s domestic politics and in the absence of sustained global pressure, a diminution of the ISI’s extraordinary powers and network cannot be expected in the proximate future. The shadowy ‘state within a state’, and its mandate of subversion and terror, will consequently continue to be a cause for serious global concern, says Indian strategic analyst Kanchan Lakshman.

 

KARACHI: The threat of Talibanisation is on the rise in Karachi and Mutahidda Qaumi Movement (MQM) activists must remain ‘mentally and physically vigilant’ to face the threat, MQM chief Altaf Hussain said on Sunday.

"What kind of Muslims do they [the Taliban] want to make us? Actually, they [the Taliban] want to bring the shariah of the Kalashnikov into force but people will not tolerate such a forced shariah,” Altaf said.

 

IT is hardly an exaggeration that the security of Pakistan, Afghanistan, the entire region and indeed that of the whole world will be defined by developments in Fata over the next few months. Different scenarios are being painted by military strategists and political experts, writes Afrasiab Khattak.

 

Pakistan's intelligence agency ISI is looking for an "opportunity" to push nearly 800 militants into India and vigil has been further intensified at the country's frontiers to prevent it, Border Security Force (BSF) Director General AK Mitra said on Monday.

 

A US Army biodefense scientist Dr. Ivins' suicide last week after he learned that he was about to be indicted for murder, in the Anthrax terrorism case, has already re-ignited a debate: Has the unprecedented boom in biodefense research made the country and the world less secure by multiplying the places and people with access to dangerous germs? ERIC LIPTON and SCOTT SHANE write on the deate in The New York Times.

 

British Muslims are part of the Taliban militia fighting against UK security forces in Afghanistan, a top British commander, who served in the restive country, has said.

 

European intelligence chiefs have launched a major investigation into the threat posed by female Islamic militants within the EU, whose involvement runs from logistics or propaganda activity to suicide bombing, they say. A report by Jason Burke, Europe editor, The Observer, London.

 

Success in the Pakistani tribal belt can offer an incentive to the Afghan Pashtun tribes and could go a long way towards making the Afghanistan effort a success, writes Shaukat Qadir in Daily Times, Lahore

 

The seven-year investigation into the anthrax attacks that traumatized and baffled the nation just weeks after the Sept. 11 attacks has taken a stunning new turn with the apparent suicide of a scientist who was the prime suspect in the case.

With investigators close to filing charges against him, the scientist — Bruce E. Ivins, 62 — apparently took his own life with a prescription painkiller, Tylenol mixed with codeine. He died Tuesday at a hospital in Frederick, Md., about an hour’s drive north of Washington. A report by DAVID STOUT and MITCHELL L. BLUMENTHAL in The New York Times.

 

The Deoband's denouncement of terror is not enough. Their dictates must show an impact on Islamic terror outfits, otherwise its papers and faxes would remain nothing more than a crude PR exercise. It's the bounden duty of Muslim leaders to make it sure and visible that those involved in jihadi barbaric attacks are condemned as un-Islamic and are practically declared non-Muslims like they have done with regard to many others in the past, writes Tarun Vijay, a Hindu nationalist ideologue.

 

THE Surat bombs are shrouded in mystery. Nobody knows where they came from, who planted them, or why they didn’t go off. Now, adding to the list of unanswered questions is the one about the bomb spotters of Surat.

 About two dozen bombs were discovered in the city, some at unlikely places – tucked behind hoarding bills and up on trees. But, no one appears to know who first spotted a bomb. Kamran Sulaimani in Surat reports for Mail Today, New Delhi.

 

The Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) on Thursday dismissed as baseless a statement made by Adviser to the Prime Minister on Interior Rehman Malik, in which he had said that TTP chief Baitullah Mehsud had connections with India. The TTP said Malik’s statement was absolutely unfounded and that it was an attempt to malign the Taliban.

 

Libya can pay hundreds of millions of dollars to compensate American victims of terrorism under a tentative agreement that hinges on action by the United States Congress, sources familiar with the accord said on Wednesday. The US and Libya worked out the tentative deal to resolve all outstanding cases of what Washington regards as past Libyan terrorist acts that killed or injured Americans. If carried out, the deal could end the legal liability to Libya stemming from multiple lawsuits by families of US victims. Long estranged, the two nations have dramatically improved relations since Libya’s 2003 decision to abandon its pursuit of chemical, biological and nuclear weapons.

 

Can the ISI ever be reined in? There is no clear-cut answer to this question. However, for the foreseeable future, it would be naïve and indeed risky for any civilian leader to drastically curb its powers or try to render it accountable by a public diktat. The organisation, which a British officer Major General Cawthorne, the then deputy chief of staff of the Pakistan army, had created in 1948, has a substantial budget, with over 10,000 officers and men on its payroll and with organic ties to the Pakistani military establishment. It is believed that over two-thirds of its staff is drawn directly from the army, writes Sumit Ganguly, professor of political science at Indiana University.

 

Outlook newsmagazine’s publication of an edited version of the e-mail sent by the so-called 'Indian Mujahideen' and a response to it by an Indian Muslim academic teaching in the US has generated unprecedented interest in the issue. As promised, the magazine has published another response by another academic and the readers’ comments on it. We are reproducing the same courtesy Outlook on internet. Editor, NewAgeIslam.com

Waquar Ahmed, an Indian, a professor at Mount Holyoke College in South Hadley, Massachusetts, USA writes: “Ideologies similar to those of the 'Indian Mujahideen' or criminals who masquerade as leaders should not have any space in Gandhi's India, in Azad's India. The time has come to work towards the prevention of disorder and catastrophe, and not merely towards their control.

 

It’s a moment of trial for Muslims, as also for the country as a whole. The letter sent by the so-called Indian Mujahideen, which may well be an arm of the Mafia - some experts suspect D-Gang’s involvement - shows the dangers to which our youths are exposed. Completely crazy arguments, written in what scholar C. M. Naim finds seemingly “rational” manner, apparently by educated people, calling for Revenge of Gujarat could lead some of our impressionable youths astray, as it perhaps already has. .....

Editor,

NewAgeIslam.com

 

India continues to bleed at the hands of jehadi terrorists, indigenous as well as from Pakistan and Bangladesh. Not only has the indigenous component been on the rise, the religious dimension of the jehad has assumed predominance over the political, economic and other elements. It seems the recently-initiated attempts of clerics and other leaders of the Muslim community to condemn the resort to terrorism is not yet having any impact on younger people. The blasts in Jaipur, Bangalore and Ahmedabad are a symbol of the failure to dissuade younger Muslims to give up the path of terrorism, says B Raman, a Chennai-based former intelligence officer.

 

An al-Qaida commander who escaped from a US prison has posted a web video urging Muslims to kill the Saudi king for leading an interfaith conference in Madrid earlier this month. Abu Yahia al-Libi, who escaped from Afghanistan's Bagram prison in 2005, says "bringing religions together...means renouncing Islam." Saudi King Abdullah sponsored the dialogue among Jews, Muslims, Christians, Hindus and Buddhists and encouraged all faiths to turn away from extremism. But al-Libi says "equating Islam with other religions is a betrayal of Islam." He calls for "the speedy killing of this tyrant."

 

In June, US Republican candidate John McCain's adviser, Charlie Black, invited a lot of comment when he said that a terrorist attack before the November US presidential elections could help the Republican Party. With the string of terror attacks spattering blood all over India, particularly in BJP-ruled states, a similar question is raising its head: are Islamist jihadis making themselves a part of the election discourse in India, just as they have attempted in other parts of the world, asks Indrani Bagchi of the TNN.

 

A virulent Al-Qa'ida website has issued a new call for followers to kill Canadians and other westerners and attack oil and economic targets. The message on the password-protected al-Ekhlaas.net forum was posted July 7, the third anniversary of the London transit massacre. The website is a favoured site of hardcore jihadists. Experts are debating the significance of the latest al-Ekhlaas threat calling for the targeting of Christians, especially those from Canada the U.S., Britain, Spain, Australia and Italy. IAN MACLEOD of Canwest News Service reports.

 

Officials Play Down Claims on Video, Which Includes Threats to Olympics

A group calling itself the Turkestan Islamic Party has released a video asserting responsibility for deadly bus bombings last week in China's western Yunnan province and other recent incidents, and threatening attacks during the Olympic Games.

The Chinese government, which has warned that terrorism is the biggest threat to the Olympics and has mounted a massive security effort, played down the group's claims, some of which were inconsistent with details of the incidents, reports Jill Drew of the

Washington Post Foreign Service.

 

The serial bombings in Ahmedabad and Bangalore, which have taken a toll of over 50 lives and injured more than 150 people, form part of a sequence of attacks that have demonstrated just how dangerous the terrorist threat to India’s major cities continues to be. Even by the macabre standards we have been compelled to become accustomed to, the character of the violence is horrifying: after all, it takes a special kind of savagery to bomb a hospital: An  Editorial in the Hindu, New Delhi.

 
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