October 19, 2007

AQ Behind The Bhutto Bombing

Pakistani security officials confirmed the obvious today, announcing that the bombings showed classic hallmarks of an al-Qaeda attack. The death toll rose to 136, making it AQ's most effective terrorist attack in years, but the failure to get Bhutto and the massive collateral damage makes it far from a success:

President Gen. Pervez Musharraf labeled the attack part of a "conspiracy against democracy," reaching out to the former prime minister with whom he is trying to forge a pro-U.S., anti-militant alliance.

The "signature at the blast site and the modus operandi" suggested the involvement of militants linked to warlord Baitullah Mehsud and al-Qaida, said Ghulam Muhammad Mohtarem, the head security official in the province where Mehsud is based.

"We were already fearing a strike from Mehsud and his local affiliates and this were conveyed to the (Bhutto's Pakistan's) People's Party but they got carried away by political exigencies instead of taking our concern seriously," Mohtarem said.

There was no claim of responsibility for the bombing of Bhutto's convoy, which killed up to 136 people as she triumphantly paraded through her hometown of Karachi Thursday.

Bhutto's husband wondered publicly whether elements within the government allowed the bombers to attack the convoy. Musharraf's office told reporters that they had warned the PPP, Bhutto's party, that three known suicide-bomber recruits had made it to Karachi in the days leading up to Bhutto's arrival. They claim that the PPP decided to conduct the public celebrations anyway.

The mutual recriminations will eventually give way. At this point, Musharraf needs Bhutto alive, not dead, to bring her party into a moderate alliance and support his presidency. Bhutto needs the Army to remain with the moderates. The two may not like each other, but at the moment they need each other.

They will shortly focus their attention on the real perpetrators. AQ made a mistake. Unlike in other nations, AQ needs political support from the Pakistanis to keep Musharraf off their back, and after the Red Mosque raid, they at least had garnered some sympathy. After killing 136 Pakistanis to miss Bhutto entirely, that sympathy will not last. They may have fired up the Pakistanis enough to bolster Musharraf's upcoming war in Waziristan more than Bhutto could have done.

The massive bombing showed Pakistanis how little AQ values Muslim life. The mask has slipped, perhaps for good, and AQ's diabolical face has been exposed.


TrackBack URL for this entry:

Comments (4)

Posted by Christoph | October 19, 2007 6:09 AM

It was never really in doubt.

These are tumultuous times and very dangerous for both leaders. Opportunities, sure, but the west is losing in Afghanistan even while we win in Iraq. Some major rethinking is going to be required to turn this conflict around. I consider Pakistan and Afghanistan to be in the same theater for this purpose, although each (both allies) requires a different approach.

Posted by Eno | October 19, 2007 6:30 AM

Wait a minute. I'm not sure how Bush, and imperialistic American Foreign policy caused this bombing. I mean, every other attack has been our fault, right? Surely America is at fault here. Can't some liberal help me out here?

Posted by docjim505 | October 19, 2007 6:40 AM

Perhaps Silky Pony can make a campaign trip to Pakistan and assure them the the War on Terror is just a bumper sticker slogan. Nothing to worry about. Nothing to see here. Move along, move along...

Posted by dougf | October 19, 2007 9:27 AM

These are tumultuous times and very dangerous for both leaders. Opportunities, sure, but the west is losing in Afghanistan even while we win in Iraq.---Christoph

Well the ignorant faction in Afghanistan is still alive and blowing things up. That is undeniable.

However there is a recent poll done in Afghanistan by the Canadian CBC which might surprise you. It probably surprised them, BBC clones that they are.

Afghanistan Speaks !

I understand that, as Marine Forces are gradually withdrawn from Iraq and their' space' assumed by Army or IA units, some of these Marines will be reposted to Afghanistan. Which will surely help with the ongoing 'security' problems. While you can't really KILL an insurgency by simply killing its practitioners, it never hurts to kill-off the actual insurgents. Can't have talk-talk until the slower thinkers get tired of war-war.

What Afghanistan has demonstrated is the fundamental uselessness of NATO as a cohesive defense force. While the US, the UK, Canada, and a few others have committed troops to the actual FIGHTING, the Germans and the rest of NATO are hiding out in the safer North of the country and refuse to commit to the 'dangerous' areas in the Pashtun South.

Europe is a complete waste of time, IMO. Lots of opinions and never a shortage of second-guessing but precious little in the way of DOING ANYTHING. Why the US still has forces stationed there is quite beyond me. For all the anti-US attitudes prevalent here up North, at least we have stepped up and pitched in.

Afghanistan is still not secure but it will have a better chance to get better if the Pakistanis move in force against the tribal areas on their side of the border.

Post a comment