Monday, June 27, 2011

Dementia of General (R) Mirza Aslam Beg & Zombie in ARY NEWS.

Dementia: Dementia is a loss of brain function that occurs with certain diseases. It affects memory, thinking, language, judgment, and behavior. Dementia usually occurs in older age. It is rare in people under age 60. The risk for dementia increases as a person gets older. Symptoms: Dementia symptoms include difficulty with many areas of mental function, including: 1) Language, 2) Memory, 3) Perception, 4) Emotional behavior or personality, 5) Cognitive skills (such as calculation, abstract thinking, or judgment) Dementia usually first appears as forgetfulness. REFERENCE: Dementia Chronic brain syndrome; Lewy body dementia; DLB; Vascular dementia; Mild cognitive impairment; MCI Last reviewed: August 29, 2009. 

Wishful thinking is interpreting facts, reports, events, perceptions, etc., according to what one would like to be the case rather than according to the actual evidence. If it is done intentionally and without regard for the truth, it is called misinterpretation, falsification, dissembling, disingenuous, or perversion of the truth. REFERENCE: Wishful thinking 

ISLAMABAD: Former Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Mirza Aslam Beg does not believe that Brigadier Ali Khan and four other officers have been arrested on the grounds of having contacts with a banned organization, the Hizb-ut-Tehrir. “There are some other reasons behind these arrests, which, the present army leadership is concealing,” he said while talking to The News here on Tuesday. Beg was however confident that if a brigadier level officer is detained in the army it must be after a thorough and in-depth investigation with solid evidence of his involvement in some crime. Pointing to the timing of his disappearance and detention, the former army chief said it was almost impossible for an officer to get elevations to the position of brigadier while maintaining contacts with an organization banned in Pakistan. He referred to army procedures saying the military keeps intelligence check on each and every officer and soldier from top to lower level. It starts from the army units, then at stations, corps and field level. “Discreetly, they (intelligence people) carry out investigations under a system that exists within the army from very first day.” Besides, he said, the Military Intelligence (MI) and Inter-Service Intelligence (ISI) keep a vigilant eye on all officers and Jawans. “So, what I want to say is that the arrested brigadier or others on the same charges would have certainly committed some crime as the concerned authorities would have collected concrete information before the action.

On contacts with the banned Hizbul Tehrir, Beg said arresting a high ranking official for having contacts with it is nothing except to conceal the facts. There are some other factors that led to Ali Khan’s detention.” The former COAS said the HT is purely a non-violent organization which neither forces its agenda nor plans to do so. “Their people want the implementation of Shariah through a convincing mechanism and their books, some of them I have read, are a research work.” “I told their people, when I was in command and even after leaving the command, that their system of Shariah is possible to be implemented in Pakistan provided the Constitution of Pakistan, based on Quran and Sunnah, and it (their system) has coherence.” Beg said he was surprised when General Musharraf had banned the HT and “I do not think any one else as USA had asked the dictator to declare it a terrorist organization. On Brigadier Ali’s case, he said the military courts would try him even after the intelligence gatherings, providing him opportunity to defend his position under the laid down procedures. REFERENCE: Beg says Brig Ali, others arrested for different reasons Dilshad Azeem Thursday, June 23, 2011 

General (R) Mirza Aslam Beg in Sawal Yeh Hai -1 (26 June 2011)

ISLAMABAD: For the first time in the country’s democratic history, the Public Accounts Committee of the National Assembly has directed the defence ministry and the GHQ to submit a report on corruption charges against three retired generals. The generals were allegedly involved in misadventures in the stock exchange which caused a loss of about Rs2 billion to the National Logistics Cell (NLC). A meeting of the PAC held here on Saturday also took notice of the killing by Rangers personnel of an unarmed youth in Karachi and officials of the interior ministry informed the committee that activities of Rangers were being monitored. The meeting, presided over by Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan of the PML-N, asked the defence ministry to submit the report on NLC scam to the PAC Secretariat by June 30. Saeed Zafar, a member of the PAC, said the committee had been waiting for the past seven months, but the GHQ was to submit its report on the scam to the committee. The defence ministry officials said the GHQ had already completed its inquiry into the scam and would soon forward a report to the ministry. “The three retired army general and a bureaucrat need to be brought to justice,” Chaudhry Nisar said, adding: “I have also told the army chief that the inquiry has to be in light of three audit reports already conducted into the NLC affairs.” The NLC is a subsidiary of the Planning Commission but has traditionally been dominated by the army. It is being headed by a serving major general and various army officers are working as his subordinates. According to an audit report, the NLC management had obtained illegal and unauthorised loans of Rs4.3 billion between 2004 and 2008 for investment in the volatile stock market and suffered a loss of Rs1.84. The PAC chairman told the defence ministry officials that obtaining the report from the GHQ would not be a problem. “Gen Ashfaq Kayani has already assured me,” he said. At an earlier meeting of the committee, NLC Director General Maj-Gen Junaid Rehmat had said the NLC was paying Rs2.7 million per day as mark-up on the loans illegally obtained for investment in the stock market. REFERENCE: PAC calls for report against three retired generals By Kalbe Ali | From the Newspaper Yesterday Delay in army probe into NLC scam irks PAC By Khawar Ghumman | From the Newspaper June 14, 2011 (2 weeks ago)

General (R) Mirza Aslam Beg in Sawal Yeh Hai - 2 (26 June 2011)

KARACHI: Secret internal American government cables, accessed by Dawn through WikiLeaks, provide confirmation that the US military’s drone strikes programme within Pakistan had more than just tacit acceptance of the country’s top military brass, despite public posturing to the contrary. In fact, as long ago as January 2008, the country’s military was requesting the US for greater drone back-up for its own military operations. Previously exposed diplomatic cables have already shown that Pakistan’s civilian leaders are strongly supportive – in private – of the drone strikes on alleged militant targets in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), even as they condemn them for general consumption. But it is not just the civilian leadership that has been following a duplicitous policy on the robotic vehicles. In a meeting on January 22, 2008 with US CENTCOM Commander Admiral William J. Fallon, Army Chief General Ashfaq Kayani requested the Americans to provide “continuous Predator coverage of the conflict area” in South Waziristan where the army was conducting operations against militants. The request is detailed in a ‘Secret’ cable sent by then US Ambassador Anne Patterson on February 11, 2008. Pakistan’s military has consistently denied any involvement in the covert programme run mainly by the CIA. The American account of Gen Kayani’s request for “Predator coverage” does not make clear if mere air surveillance were being requested or missile-armed drones were being sought. Theoretically “Predator coverage” could simply mean air surveillance and not necessarily offensive support. However the reaction to the request suggests otherwise. According to the report of the meeting sent back to Washington by Patterson, Admiral Fallon “regretted that he did not have the assets to support this request” but offered trained US Marines (known as JTACs) to coordinate air strikes for Pakistani infantry forces on ground. General Kayani “demurred” on the offer, pointing out that having US soldiers on ground “would not be politically acceptable.”

In another meeting with US Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen over March 3-4, 2008, Kayani was asked for his help “in approving a third Restricted Operating Zone for US aircraft over the FATA.” The request – detailed in a cable sent from the US Embassy Islamabad on March 24 – clearly indicates that two ‘corridors’ for US drones had already been approved earlier. In secret cable on October 9, 2009 (previously published by WikiLeaks), Ambassador Patterson reports that US military support to the Pakistan Army’s 11th Corps operations in South Waziristan would “be at the division-level and would include a live downlink of unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) full motion video.” In fact, in November 2008, Dawn had reported then commander of US forces in Afghanistan, General David McKiernan, telling its reporter that US and Pakistan also share video feeds from Predator drones that carry out attacks. “We have a Predator feed going down to the one border coordination centre at Torkham Gate thats looked at by the Pakistan Military, Afghan Military, and the International Security Assistance Force,” General McKiernan had said. Sharing of video feeds does not imply operational control by Pakistan’s military, however, and even this sharing may have subsequently been suspended. Despite the occasionally disastrously misdirected attacks which have fed into the public hue and cry over civilian casualties, there is, in private, seeming general acceptance by the military of the efficacy of drone strikes. In a cable dated February 19, 2009, Ambassador Patterson sends talking points to Washington ahead of a week-long visit to the US by COAS Kayani. Referring to drone strikes, she writes: “Kayani knows full well that the strikes have been precise (creating few civilian casualties) and targeted primarily at foreign fighters in the Waziristans.”

Another previously unpublished cable dated May 26, 2009 details President Zardari’s meeting on May 25 with an American delegation led by Senator Patrick Leahy. “Referring to a recent drone strike in the tribal area that killed 60 militants,” wrote Ambassador Patterson in her report, “Zardari reported that his military aide believed a Pakistani operation to take out this site would have resulted in the deaths of over 60 Pakistani soldiers.” The general support for drone strikes from both the military and civilian leadership is also evidenced by the continuous demand, documented over numerous cables, from Pakistan Government officials to American interlocutors for drone technology to be placed in Pakistani hands. The issue conveyed to the Americans is not so much that of accuracy as that of managing public perceptions. In the meeting with Senator Leahy, Zardari is directly quoted telling the US delegation to “give me the drones so my forces can take out the militants.” That way, he explains, “we cannot be criticized by the media or anyone else for actions our Army takes to protect our sovereignty.”

General Kayani also “focused on the need for surveillance assets” in the meeting with Admiral Fallon according to Patterson’s cable. “Kayani said he was not interested in acquiring Predators, but was interested in tactical Unmanned Air Vehicles (UAVs).” Predators are considered ‘theatre-level’ technology able to cover wide regions such as the whole of Afghanistan and Pakistan through remotely stationed operations rooms while ‘tactical’ drones are less wide-ranging and can be operated by forces on the ground. After the first US drone strike outside the tribal areas, in Bannu on November 19, 2008 which killed four people including an alleged senior Al Qaeda member, Ambassador Patterson had presciently noted in another previously unpublished cable (dated November 24, 2008) the dangers of keeping the Pakistani public misinformed. “As the gap between private GOP acquiescence and public condemnation for US action grows,” she wrote back to Washington, “Pakistani leaders who feel they look increasingly weak to their constituents could begin considering stronger action against the US, even though the response to date has focused largely on ritual denunciation.” REFERENCES: Army chief wanted more drone support By Hasan Zaidi | From the Newspaper May 20, 2011 Kayani asked for “continuous Predator coverage” DAWN.COM May 20, 2011

General (R) Mirza Aslam Beg in Sawal Yeh Hai - 3 (26 June 2011)

The chief of Pakistan's spy agency said he had contacted Israeli officials to head off potential attacks on Israeli targets in India, according to an October 2009 U.S. diplomatic cable published by WikiLeaks. Lieutenant General Ahmad Shuja Pasha, head of Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence agency, told former U.S. Ambassador Anne Patterson that he wanted Washington to know he had been to Oman and Iran "to follow up on reports which he received in Washington about a terrorist attack on India." "Pasha asked Ambassador to convey to Washington that he had followed up on threat information that an attack would be launched against India between September-November. He had been in direct touch with the Israelis on possible threats against Israeli targets in India," the Oct 7, 2009 cable reported. A Pakistani Inter-Services Intelligence spokesman had no immediate comment. Israel's anti-terrorism headquarters publicized a severe travel warning for Israelis, especially those planning to enter India only one week later, on October 15, 2009. That travel warning specified that there was a very real concrete threat of an attack on Israelis in India. The travel warning of October 15 was a ramping up of a previous travel warning issued on the eve of the Rosh Hashanah holiday in September 2009, which conveyed fears of an attack against Israelis throughout India. The anti-terrorism headquarters announced at that time that the terror organization that had carried out the most lethal terror attack in Mumbai in November 2008 was planning a series of attacks throughout India, especially in locations with large concentrations of Western and Israeli tourists, and possibly in Chabad Houses, as well. In November 2009, the anti-terrorism headquarters announced that it was retracting its travel warning. Pakistan, a conservative Muslim country, has no official diplomatic relations with Israel. Such contacts would infuriate Muslim militants waging a campaign to topple the government. In September 2005, however, then-Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom organized a public meeting with Pakistani then-Foreign Minister Khurshid Mahmoud Kasuri, with the help of Turkey. REFERENCE: WikiLeaks: Pakistan tipped off Israel on terror threats in India Pakistan wants contacts with Israel to remain secret in order not to anger anti-government Muslim militants. By Barak Ravid and Reuters Published 19:46 01.12.10 Latest update 19:46 01.12.10

General (R) Mirza Aslam Beg - 1 (Frontline 30 May 2010)


General (R) Mirza Aslam Beg - 2 (Frontline 30 May 2010)

General (R) Mirza Aslam Beg - 3 (Frontline 30 May 2010)

General (R) Mirza Aslam Beg - 4 (Frontline 30 May 2010)

One afternoon, in the midst of a monsoon, I sought out one of the founders of the pro-jihadi strategy, the retired general Mirza Aslam Beg. He lived in Rawalpindi, the military capital half an hour from Islamabad, in a brick and tile-roofed mansion with a basketball hoop, flowing greenery and Judy, his one-eyed cocker spaniel. The house was immaculate, with marble floors, rugs, fine china and porcelain on display behind glass and an amusing portrait of Aslam Beg as a young, Ray-Banned, pommaded officer. His mansion sits across the street from Musharraf’s. Aslam Beg played a leading role in the military’s creation of “asymmetrical assets,” jargon for the jihadis who have long been used by the military as proxies in Kashmir and Afghanistan. He was chief of the army staff from 1988 to 1991, while the Pakistani nuclear scientist A.Q. Khan was selling the country’s nuclear technology to Iran, Libya and North Korea. Beg held talks with the Iranians about exchanging Iranian oil for Pakistani nuclear skill.

Aslam Beg likes to remind visitors that he was one of a group of army officers trained by the C.I.A. in the 1950’s as a “stay-behind organization” that would melt into the population if ever the Soviet Union overran Pakistan. Those brigadiers and lieutenant colonels then trained and directed the Afghan jihadis.

In the 1980’s, “the C.I.A. set up the largest support and administrative bases in Mohmand agency, Waziristan and Baluchistan,” Aslam Beg told me. “These were the logistics bases for eight long years, and you can imagine the relations that developed. And then Chechens, Uzbeks, Tajiks, Saudis developed family relations with the local people.” The Taliban, he said, fell back after 2001 to these baselines. “In 2003, when the U.S. attacked Iraq, a whole new dimension was added to the conflict. The foreign mujahedeen who’d fought in Afghanistan started moving back to Afghanistan and Iraq.” And the old Afghan jihadi leaders stopped by the mansion of their mentor, Aslam Beg, to tell him they were planning to wage war against the American occupiers.

As the rain outside turned to hail, banging against the windows, Aslam Beg ate some English sandwiches that had been wheeled in by a servant. “As a believer,” he went on, “I’ll tell you how I understand it. In the Holy Book there’s an injunction that the believer must reach out to defend the tyrannized. The words of God are, ‘What restrains you from fighting for those helpless men, women and children who due to their weakness are being brutalized and are calling you to free them from atrocities being perpetuated on them.’ This is a direct message, and it may not impact the hearts and minds of all believers. Maybe one in 10,000 will leave their home and go to the conflicts where Muslims are engaged in liberation movements, such as Chechnya, Palestine, Iraq, Afghanistan and Kashmir. Now it’s a global deterrent force.”

The Authentic Jihad

The old city of Lahore, with its broad boulevards and banyan-tree canopies, remains the cultural and intellectual heart of Pakistan. It is home to a small elite of journalists, editors, authors, painters, artists and businessmen. Najam Sethi, editor in chief of The Friday Times, and his wife, Jugnu Mohsin, the publisher, are popular fixtures among this crowd. Like so many of Pakistan’s intellectuals, they have had their share of run-ins with government security agents. For pushing the bounds of press freedom, Sethi was dragged from his bedroom during Nawaz Sharif’s reign, beaten, gagged and detained without charge. Musharraf, in his new autobiography, claims that Nawaz Sharif wanted him to court-martial Sethi for treason, an act that seemed ludicrous to him, and he refused.

I met him one afternoon at the newspaper’s offices as he was preparing his weekly editorial. He is a tall, affable man with smiling eyes and large glasses. And he got right down to business, providing an analysis of why Pakistan had decided to bring its “assets” — by which he meant the Taliban and Kashmiri jihadis — off the shelf.

In the days following 9/11, when Musharraf gathered together major editors to tell them that he had no choice but to withdraw his support for the Taliban, Sethi raised the touchy issue of the other jihadis. He said that if Musharraf was abandoning the Taliban, he would have to abandon the sectarian jihadis (fighting the Shiites), the Kashmir jihadis, all of the jihadis, because they were all trained in mind by the same religious leaders and in body by the same Pakistani forces.

In January 2002, Musharraf gave an unusually long televised speech to the nation. He reminded the people that his campaign against extremism was initiated years before and not under American pressure. He vowed that Pakistan would no longer export jihadis to Kashmir, that he was again placing a ban on several jihadi organizations, that camps would be closed and that while the madrasas were mostly educating the poor, some were centers of extremist teaching and would be reformed. A month later, Musharraf was at the White House next to President Bush, who praised him for standing against terrorism. REFERENCE: In the Land of the Taliban By ELIZABETH RUBIN Published: October 22, 2006 A version of this article appeared in print on October 22, 2006, on page 686 of the New York edition.

General (R) Mirza Aslam Beg on AAJ TV - 1 (27 Apr 2010)


General (R) Mirza Aslam Beg on AAJ TV - 2 (27 Apr 2010)

General (R) Mirza Aslam Beg on AAJ TV - 3 (27 Apr 2010)

LAHORE, Aug 7: Politicians must start developing a consensus for providing a safe exit to Gen Pervez Musharraf when he will transfer power next year. This was stated by Gen Mirza Aslam Beg (retired), chief of Awami Qiadat Party, while addressing a press conference here on Tuesday. He said the parliament had approved 69 amendments to the Constitution, including Article 58-2(b), and ratified all acts of the martial law regime before President Ziaul Haq transferred power to the government headed by Muhammad Khan Junejo. Gen Musharraf would not be an exception, Mr Beg said. "He needs indemnity laws. An insurance policy before transferring power to civilians. It is up to the politicians to provide him with an escape route if they want a smooth transition," he said. Mr Beg predicted that the next set-up would suffer from inherent problem of pulls and pushes from different sides because not a single party was going to win next elections. This situation puts an added responsibility on politicians to develop some kind of agreement for running the country in the future, Mr Beg said, adding that the absence of such a consensus would make things difficult for the nation. About allegations of armymen meddling with polls to ensure election of "right candidates" and its possible resulting in the division of the army, he said: "The establishment's interference in the elections has always backfired. The same will happen this time. Look at Azhar Saeed Butt's case. He was virtually living with the 114 Brigade but lost elections. I don't think that a wishful thinking of getting "desirable candidate" elected works. Let the army play its hand and see the results for itself." REFERENCE: Provide safe exit to Musharraf: Beg Staff Reporter DAWN WIRE SERVICE Week Ending: 11 August, 2001 Issue : 07/32

Shafqat Mahmood

How Aslam Beg damaged a nation By Shafqat Mahmood Friday, September 04, 2009

The history of this much abused country is being churned to let the scum rise to the top. And what nuggets of filth are floating up -- military-made political parties, midnight jackals, cash for elections, Karachi operations, agency this and agency that. Is this the Pakistani version of a truth and reconciliation commission? The 'truth' being dished out has more slants than a right-angle triangle and it is certainly not leading to any reconciliation. The million-dollar question is where all these worms crawled out of? Have they rolled down the presidency, as the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) alleges or have they emerged from the irritable bowel of an over-active nine zero?

General (R) Mirza Aslam Beg in Jirga - 1 (GEO TV 4th Sep 2009)

General (R) Mirza Aslam Beg in Jirga - 2 (GEO TV 4th Sep 2009) 

General (R) Mirza Aslam Beg in Jirga - 3 (GEO TV 4th Sep 2009)

Whoever has unleashed them has no care for the ascetic discipline of the holy month because they make for a juicy and spicy fare. It is easy to choke on Brigadier Billa because he is truly unsavoury. But let us admit to a secret vice; he has stories to tell. And stories are interesting even if they come from the mouth of someone you would ideally like to see begging for mercy, hanging upside down a pole The question of the month though is -- and it has been asked often enough -- let he who is without sin cast the first stone. I don't see a mad rush for the quarries and the reason is simple. The elite of this country has much to seek forgiveness for. We are all sinners literally and metaphorically.

The politicians top the list because they flaunt their sins publicly or maybe we scrutinise them more fearlessly. They are vulnerable because their passion for fame and fortune makes them impatient. It is not a pleasure they want to defer and end up becoming easy targets for manipulators. The Hameed Guls and the Billas of this world thrive in this milieu. They have guns and cash. While the politicians are more visible, their sins in the larger scheme of things are relatively innocent. They make money and are unprincipled but their impact on the nation is more through happenstance than design. The sins of some people in the military have been more sinister, more egregious and more damaging to the nation. It is they who need to be exposed.

In my reading of post-Zia history, there is no greater sinner than Aslam Beg. By his actions after Zia's death and indeed throughout his tenure of office, he caused great harm to this nation. He did not let democracy settle, manipulated parties and politicians and corrupted them, brought governments down, indeed did everything he possibly could to create circumstances for his ascent to power. He failed but in the process, he hurt us badly. It is easy to blame Ghulam Ishaq Khan (GIK) because he had his share of sins but without Aslam Beg goading him on, much of what GIK did would not have happened. It was Beg who asked Hameed Gul to form the Islami Jamhoori Ittehad (IJI) and stop Benazir and the Pakistan People's Party (PPP) from coming to power. When he could not stop it, it was he who led the media and dirty-tricks campaign to undermine it and bring it down. Let us keep our biases aside for a minute, ladies and gentlemen. Whether we like Benazir Bhutto is not the issue here and more importantly, let us suspend our knowledge of what she did later. However, in 1988 she was not only the most popular leader in Pakistan but an international celebrity. She was an Aung San Suu Kyi like figure whose father had been murdered and who had suffered much hardship. There was not a hint of the taints that later followed her. If Beg and his cohorts had been patriots, they would not have formed the IJI to stop her. Afterwards when she still made it to power, they would have seen her as an asset to Pakistan. 

They should have gone to her and said "Madam, you are inexperienced but we will help you run the government. Your international image is a great plus for the country and we want you to repair the damage to our global reputation after Zia's draconian dictatorship." They did nothing of the sort. They started to sully her image and taint her reputation from day one. She indeed had her faults and made their task easier but she should have been guided. Instead, they launched operation midnight jackal, engineered a no-confidence move against her, got the MQM to take on the PPP in the streets of Karachi, thwarted the Pucca Qilla operation, which was leading to the capture of a huge cache arms stored by terrorists in Hyderabad, and then prevailed upon GIK to dismiss her government. This not only hurt Pakistan but derailed democracy. Had a single civilian government completed its tenure and transfer of power taken place through constitutionally scheduled elections, we would have been on our way. But Beg would not allow this. It was not without purpose. His plan was to first destroy the reputation of Benazir, bring her government down, and then do the same to Nawaz Sharif. Once all politicians had been damaged, he thought, his ascent to power would become easy. Consider this. After the Benazir government had been dismissed in 1990, he distributed money and did everything to make an IJI government come into power. Yet no sooner had Nawaz Sharif taken over, he was conspiring against him. I know this personally because I saw it happen before my eyes. Nawaz Sharif had taken over in perhaps October or November and by December, officers of military intelligence were making contact with the PPP to instigate it against the government. 

Not only that, Beg deliberately started to undermine Nawaz by taking a position different from that of the government during the First Gulf War. His agents, largely serving military officers but also some of his friends, principally one Lahore-based businessman, started to goad the PPP to take on the Nawaz Sharif government through street power. The purpose was to create enough trouble to make it possible for Beg to take over. Fortunately, for us, his time ran out and Ghulam Ishaq Khan trumped him by appointing a new army chief, two months before his term of office was to end. This was unprecedented and the only reason it was done was to make him a lame duck and thwart his ambition for power. 

Beg left with much regret but a legacy of bitterness was created that tainted the entire decade of the 90s. Democracy could not settle after that. Benazir and the PPP eventually managed to bring Nawaz Sharif down through Ghulam Ishaq Khan and PML N paid the compliment back by launching various movements during Benazir's second term in office. It then supported Farooq Leghari in the sacking of the second PPP government. This merry-go-round continued until Musharraf threw the whole lot out in 1999. End of democracy phase one. A new phase has started. What will this bring? Email: Source: The News International URL:

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