While the Chaudry / Sharif backed long march goes on in Pakistan, it’s been somewhat occluded by the recent confrontation between Pakistani and Nato forces. 11 Pakistan forces are dead, but a lot of questions remain.
Syed, mouthpiece of the Taliban, points this out as well in the Asia times, and I would rather he tell us who “Syed Sheikh” is and where he’s at. (“Syed Sheikh” is rumored to be the new AQ #3) I disagree with Syed on his article’s premise btw, Musharraf is great at tap dancing along the razor wire of Pakistan’s political schisms, but he will not be a force to be reckoned with in Pakistan Politics anytime in the near future. (I won’t say never since Pakistan has a history of recycling politicians as soon as one post-colonial feudal faction gains over another.)
Instead I expect Musharraf to serve out his term, advising here and there, but not quite be pushed out of the presidency. He will survive because he has too much valuable knowledge and advice, and besides he knows where every skeleton lies.
As to the Pakistan Army deaths, there’s quite a lot of furor over this and it makes you wonder if it weren’t a false-flag set up. The questions are many, and hopefully the proposed joint investigation will unveil the truth. Here are the questions I have:
- What were Pakistani troops doing in such close proximity to Taliban Troops?
- Why did they provide the Taliban covering fire, and continue to engage ANA and Nato troops? (this as demonstrated by the gun camera footage you can see here at Jawa Report. )
- Where does the Durand line really lie in this section? (Both Afghanistan and Pakistan are notorious for stretching this demarckation north or south when given the chance in any area.)
- Did the Pakistan Army think it was “just ANA” forces and fire at them as they have many times in the past in cross-border incidents?
- Was that scenario set up purposefully by the fleeing but now dead Taliban?
- What type of troops were the Pakistani forces? Were they SSG (special forces,) Frontier Corps (Frontier Militia forces,) ISI (Pakistan’s Intel agency,) local tribal levies, or regular Pakistan Army? [UPDATE: CT Blog identifies the Pakistani Forces as Frontier Corps.]
In the meantime every Pol in Pakistan is bound to protest, but methinks in this case it’s too much. If you fire on Nato forces a few shots might be ignored as it’s all in good fun, but an extended attack with multiple RPG’s etc. is bound to bring you both failure and death.
Update: Holger Awakens details the latest predator strike in Pakistan, it appears that Baitullah Mehsud was targetted. Reports of one dead, but no confirmations as to who.