Thursday, September 22, 2011

Haqqani Network, Proxy War & US History of Proxy War.

Headlines like “Jap City No More” soon brought the news to a joyous nation. Crowds gathered in Times Square to celebrate; there was less of the enemy left. Rarely are victors encumbered by remorse. President Harry Truman declared: “When you have to deal with a beast you have to treat him as a beast. It is most regrettable but nevertheless true.” Not surprisingly, six decades later, even American liberals remain ambivalent about the morality of nuking the two Japanese cities. The late Hans Bethe, Nobel Prize winner in physics of Manhattan Project fame and a leading exponent of arms control, declared that “the atom bomb was the greatest gift we could have given to the Japanese”. REFERENCE: Bin Laden And Hiroshima by Pervez Hoodbhoy August 06, 2005


The Rev. Samuel McCrea Cavert, general secretary of the Federal Council, sent a telegram to the president on August 9, the day Nagasaki was bombed:

Honorable harry s Truman
president of the United States the white house

Many Christians deeply disturbed over use of atomic bombs against Japanese cities because of their necessarily indiscriminate destructive efforts and because their use sets extremely dangerous precedent for future of mankind. bishop Oxnam president of the council and john foster Dulles chairman of its commission on a just and durable peace are preparing statement for probable release tomorrow urging that atomic bombs be regarded as trust for humanity and that Japanese nation be given genuine opportunity and time to verify facts about new bomb and to accept surrender terms. respectfully urge that ample opportunity be given Japan to reconsider ultimatum before any further devastation by atomic bomb is visited upon her people.

Federal Council of churches of Christ in America
Samuel McCrea Cavert general secretary

Harry Truman, in office only five months, struggled with diplomatic language in his quick response. In a letter dated August 11, he wrote:

My dear Mr. Cavert:

I appreciated very much your telegram of August ninth.

Nobody is more disturbed over the use of Atomic bombs than I am but I was greatly disturbed over the unwarranted attack by the Japanese on Pearl Harbor and their murder of our prisoners of war. The only language they seem to understand is the one we have been using to bombard them.

When you have to deal with a beast you have to treat him as a beast. It is most regrettable but nevertheless true.

Sincerely yours,

Harry S. Truman

Courtesy: A moment in ecumenical history August 1945: the churches and the bomb


WASHINGTON: Days before he retires as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral Mike Mullen has said that Pakistan’s premier intelligence agency has been supporting ‘proxies’ as a strategy. Addressing the audience at the think-tank Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Mullen adopted a critical tone and focused on the Inter-Services Intelligence agency’s (ISI) links with proxies in the regions, which he said was part of their strategy. “The ISI has to make this decision to strategically disengage. They have been supporting proxies for an extended period of time,” he said. “The Haqqani piece of this has got to be reversed.” He said that he had met General Kayani for four hours in Seville, Spain, on September 16 on the sidelines of the Nato conference, where they discussed the Haqqani network. When asked if General Kayani had given him a commitment on action against the Haqqani network, Mullen evaded a reply by saying that he had managed to protect his relationship with Kayani by not talking in detail about what was discussed in their meetings. “We have a very close relationship … the strength of the connection is what is important so that we can get through hard times.” In response to a question about US assistance with helicopters for Pakistan, Mullen said that while the US had provided a large amount of military equipment to Pakistan and had focused on helicopters, he did not believe there was a direct link between improving Pakistan’s helicopter fleet and an operation in North Waziristan. REFERENCE: ‘Strategic assets’: ISI must disengage from proxies: Mullen By Huma Imtiaz Published: September 21, 2011 

Hillary Clinton on Pakistan - Part - 1


Toasts of President Reagan and President Mobammad Zia-ul-Haq of Pakistan at the State Dinner December 7, 1982 - In the last few years, in particular, your country has come to the forefront of the struggle to construct a framework for peace in your region, an undertaking which includes your strenuous efforts to bring peaceful resolution to the crisis in Afghanistan—a resolution which will enable the millions of refugees currently seeking shelter in Pakistan to go home in peace and honor. Further, you've worked to ensure that progress continues toward improving the relationship between Pakistan and India. And in all these efforts the United States has supported your objectives and will applaud your success. And, Mr. President, unfortunately, a new and menacing turbulence has arisen in our region. More than a fifth of the entire population of Afghanistan has been compelled to seek shelter in Pakistan as a result of the armed intervention in that country by a foreign power. We are bending our effort to resolve this tragic situation through a peaceful political settlement, in accordance with the principles enunciated by the international community. The latest manifestation of this was the Resolution of Afghanistan adopted by the United Nations General Assembly, once again with the overwhelming support of the member states. Spread this America, Mr. President, to areas other than the United States of America. Let America be the torchbearer of peace, peace not only on the American continent but peace in Afghanistan, peace in Vietnam, peace in Somalia, and above all, peace in Palestine. We wish you, sir, all the best in your endeavors. And you will never find Pakistanis faltering. We'll be there right behind you to give you the helping hand, if we can, at the moment that you wish us to do so. REFERENCE: Toasts of President Reagan and President Mobammad Zia-ul-Haq of Pakistan at the State Dinner December 7, 1982

Steve Coll ends his important book on Afghanistan -- Ghost Wars: The Secret History of the CIA, Afghanistan and bin Laden, from the Soviet Invasion to 10 September 2001--by quoting Afghan President Hamid Karzai: "What an unlucky country." Americans might find this a convenient way to ignore what their government did in Afghanistan between 1979 and the present, but luck had nothing to do with it. Brutal, incompetent, secret operations of the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency, frequently manipulated by the military intelligence agencies of Pakistan and Saudi Arabia, caused the catastrophic devastation of this poor country. On the evidence contained in Coll's book Ghost Wars, neither the Americans nor their victims in numerous Muslim and Third World countries will ever know peace until the Central Intelligence Agency has been abolished. It should by now be generally accepted that the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan on Christmas Eve 1979 was deliberately provoked by the United States. In his memoir published in 1996, the former CIA director Robert Gates made it clear that the American intelligence services began to aid the mujahidin guerrillas not after the Soviet invasion, but six months before it. In an interview two years later with Le Nouvel Observateur, President Carter's national security adviser Zbigniew Brzezinski proudly confirmed Gates's assertion. "According to the official version of history," Brzezinski said, "CIA aid to the mujahidin began during 1980, that's to say, after the Soviet army invaded Afghanistan. But the reality, kept secret until now, is completely different: on 3 July 1979 President Carter signed the first directive for secret aid to the opponents of the pro-Soviet regime in Kabul. And on the same day, I wrote a note to the president in which I explained that in my opinion this aid would lead to a Soviet military intervention."

Asked whether he in any way regretted these actions,

Brzezinski replied: Regret what? The secret operation was an excellent idea. It drew the Russians into the Afghan trap and you want me to regret it? On the day that the Soviets officially crossed the border, I wrote to President Carter, saying, in essence: 'We now have the opportunity of giving to the USSR its Vietnam War.'

Nouvel Observateur: "And neither do you regret having supported Islamic fundamentalism, which has given arms and advice to future terrorists?"

Brzezinski: "What is more important in world history? The Taliban or the collapse of the Soviet empire? Some agitated Muslims or the liberation of Central Europe and the end of the Cold War?"

Hillary Clinton on Pakistan - Part - 2


Funding the Fundamentalists

The motives of the White House and the CIA were shaped by the Cold War: a determination to kill as many Soviet soldiers as possible and the desire to restore some aura of rugged machismo as well as credibility that U.S. leaders feared they had lost when the Shah of Iran was overthrown. The CIA had no intricate strategy for the war it was unleashing in Afghanistan. Howard Hart, the agency's representative in the Pakistani capital, told Coll that he understood his orders as: "You're a young man; here's your bag of money, go raise hell. Don't fuck it up, just go out there and kill Soviets." These orders came from a most peculiar American. William Casey, the CIA's director from January 1981 to January 1987, was a Catholic Knight of Malta educated by Jesuits. Statues of the Virgin Mary filled his mansion, called "Maryknoll," on Long Island. He attended mass daily and urged Christianity on anyone who asked his advice. Once settled as CIA director under Reagan, he began to funnel covert action funds through the Catholic Church to anti-Communists in Poland and Central America, sometimes in violation of American law. He believed fervently that by increasing the Catholic Church's reach and power he could contain Communism's advance, or reverse it. From Casey's convictions grew the most important U.S. foreign policies of the 1980s -- support for an international anti-Soviet crusade in Afghanistan and sponsorship of state terrorism in Nicaragua, El Salvador, and Guatemala. Casey knew next to nothing about Islamic fundamentalism or the grievances of Middle Eastern nations against Western imperialism. He saw political Islam and the Catholic Church as natural allies in the counter-strategy of covert action to thwart Soviet imperialism. He believed that the USSR was trying to strike at the U.S. in Central America and in the oil-producing states of the Middle East. He supported Islam as a counter to the Soviet Union's atheism, and Coll suggests that he sometimes conflated lay Catholic organizations such as Opus Dei with the Muslim Brotherhood, the Egyptian extremist organization, of which Ayman al-Zawahiri, Osama bin Laden's chief lieutenant, was a passionate member. The Muslim Brotherhood's branch in Pakistan, the Jamaat-e-Islami, was strongly backed by the Pakistani army, and Coll writes that Casey, more than any other American, was responsible for welding the alliance of the CIA, Saudi intelligence, and the army of General Mohammed Zia-ul-Haq, Pakistan's military dictator from 1977 to 1988.

On the suggestion of the Pakistani Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) organization, Casey went so far as to print thousands of copies of the Koran, which he shipped to the Afghan frontier for distribution in Afghanistan and Soviet Uzbekistan. He also fomented, without presidential authority, Muslim attacks inside the USSR and always held that the CIA's clandestine officers were too timid. He preferred the type represented by his friend Oliver North. Over time, Casey's position hardened into CIA dogma, which its agents, protected by secrecy from ever having their ignorance exposed, enforced in every way they could. The agency resolutely refused to help choose winners and losers among the Afghan jihad's guerrilla leaders. The result, according to Coll, was that "Zia-ul-Haq's political and religious agenda in Afghanistan gradually became the CIA's own." In the era after Casey, some scholars, journalists, and members of Congress questioned the agency's lavish support of the Pakistan-backed Islamist general Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, especially after he refused to shake hands with Ronald Reagan because he was an infidel. But Milton Bearden, the Islamabad station chief from 1986 to 1989, and Frank Anderson, chief of the Afghan task force at Langley, vehemently defended Hekmatyar on the grounds that "he fielded the most effective anti-Soviet fighters." Even after the Soviet Union withdrew from Afghanistan in 1988, the CIA continued to follow Pakistani initiatives, such as aiding Hekmatyar's successor, Mullah Omar, leader of the Taliban. When Edmund McWilliams, the State Department's special envoy to the Afghan resistance in 1988-89, wrote that "American authority and billions of dollars in taxpayer funding had been hijacked at the war's end by a ruthless anti-American cabal of Islamists and Pakistani intelligence officers determined to impose their will on Afghanistan," CIA officials denounced him and planted stories in the embassy that he might be homosexual or an alcoholic. Meanwhile, Afghanistan descended into one of the most horrific civil wars of the 20th century. The CIA never fully corrected its naive and ill-informed reading of Afghan politics until after bin Laden bombed the U.S. embassies in Nairobi and Dar es Salaam on August 7, 1998. REFERENCE: Are We to Blame for Afghanistan? By Chalmers Johnson 11-22-04

UN Ambassador Madeleine Albright in 60 Minutes with Lesley Stahl


Vice-President George H. W. Bush returns from his trip to the Middle East, where he has passed along a message to Iraq to step up its air war against Iran (see July 23, 1986). The covert machinations nearly become public knowledge when US embassy officials in Saudi Arabia, learning of the Saudi transfer of US arms to Iraq earlier in the year (see February 1986), question the Saudi ambassador to the US, Prince Bandar. Bandar, fully aware of the arms transfer, tells the officials that the transfer was “accidental” and the amount of arms transferred was negligible. The State Department is also curious about the transfer, warns that the arms transfer violates the Arms Export Control Act, and says it must inform Congress of the transfer. Such a notification would endanger the entire process, and possibly short-circuit another arms deal in the works, a $3.5 billion transfer of five AWACS planes to Saudi Arabia, of which Congress has already been informed. But after the White House notifies the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Richard Lugar (R-IN), and mollifies Lugar by telling him the arms sales to Iraq were “inadvertent,” “unauthorized,” and involved only a “small quantity of unsophisticated weapons,” Lugar agrees to keep silent about the matter. Another senator later approaches Lugar about rumors that Saudi Arabia is sending US arms to Iraq, and recalls that “Dick Lugar told me there was nothing to it, and so I took his word.” [NEW YORKER, 11/2/1992] REFERENCE: August 5, 1986: Covert Arms Sales to Iraq Nearly Revealed Profile: Bandar bin Sultan a.k.a. "Bandar Bush", Prince Bandar

Shaking Hands: Iraqi President Saddam Hussein greets Donald Rumsfeld, then special envoy of President Ronald Reagan, in Baghdad on December 20, 1983. REFERENCE: US NATIONAL SECURITY ARCHIVE Shaking Hands with Saddam Hussein: The U.S. Tilts toward Iraq, 1980-1984 National Security Archive Electronic Briefing Book No. 82 Edited by Joyce Battle February 25, 2003

Proxy War with the Help of Mafia

Two months after Japan's December 7, 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor, 48 American merchant ships had been sunk in the Atlantic Ocean not far off the United States Eastern seaboard by Nazi U-Boats. This onslaught was said to have officially begun on February 2, 1942, after the French ship Normandie, then the largest ship in the world, caught fire and capsized at New York City's Passenger Ship Terminal. (Note: while the Normandie spread fears of sabotage throughout the country, it was later determined that the fire was caused accidentally by errant sparks from a welding torch.) The ship casualties led to Naval Intelligence suspecting that the Nazis were getting information on Atlantic Ocean ship movements and logistics from domestic sympathizers and spies. While Naval Intelligence knew that organized crime had controlled the East Coast docks for years, they needed a way to enter that world and ask for help. Intelligence officers first approached gangster Meyer Lansky and asked him to meet with his close friend, Charles "Lucky" Luciano, the undisputed boss of organized crime in the United States. The object of this liaison was for Lucky and Lansky to help recruit informants on the East Coast docks. At that time, Luciano was serving a long sentence at Dannemora Prison in a remote part of New York State, up to 50 years for promoting prostitution. When Luciano agreed to help, the government's Office of Strategic Services (the forerunner of the CIA) granted him unrestricted (and unrecorded) visits at Dannemora from friends, family, and business associates. "Operation Underworld" became the name of the OSS alliance with organized crime in its war effort. After Luciano and Lansky put the word out on the docks, recruiting thousands of informants, the U-Boat attacks on merchant ships soon stopped. After the government was sure that Lucky had made good on his promise, they moved him from Dannemora Prison (then known as "the Siberia of America") to Great Meadow, a "country club" prison near Albany, the New York state capital. Toward the end of the war, "Lucky" Luciano was again approached by Intelligence before the Allied invasion of Sicily. The OSS believed that the mobster's connections on the island of Sicily with Mafia leaders would help funnel Nazi troop movement information to the invading force, General George Patton's Third Division. Luciano, sure enough, was easily able to make contact with Calogero Vizzini, Sicily's Mafia boss. When Patton's Division attacked, Vizzini's men protected the roads from snipers, enabling the invasion's success. At the end of the war, Vizzini was made an honorary Colonel of the U.S. Army. In 1946, the government rewarded Luciano with a commuted sentence on condition that he then be deported to Italy after release. (Lucky had never been a naturalized American citizen.) Charles "Lucky" Luciano never returned to the United States, except after death. His body was allowed to be buried at St. John's Cemetery in New York City. REFERENCE: Lucky Luciano, American Hero? 2008 04 25 By Elliot Feldman | How the Underworld Helped Us Win WWII  For Further Reading: The Last Testament of Lucky Luciano by Martin A Gosch and Richard Hammer 

The CIA & the mafia


Lucky Luciano - Meyer Lansky - Frank Costello - In the 1930s, Meyer Lansky and his gang claimed to have stepped outside their usual criminal activities to break up rallies held by Nazi sympathizers. Lansky recalled a particular rally in Yorkville, a German neighborhood in Manhattan, that he claimed he and 14 other associates disrupted: The stage was decorated with a swastika and a picture of Adolf Hitler. The speakers started ranting. There were only fifteen of us, but we went into action. We threw some of them out the windows. Most of the Nazis panicked and ran out. We chased them and beat them up. We wanted to show them that Jews would not always sit back and accept insults. During World War II, Lansky was also instrumental in helping the Office of Naval Intelligence's Operation Underworld, in which the US government recruited criminals to watch out for German infiltrators and submarine-borne saboteurs. According to Lucky Luciano's authorized biography, during this time, Lansky helped arrange a deal with the US Government via a high-ranking U.S. Navy official. This deal would secure the release of Lucky Luciano from prison; in exchange the Italian Mafia would provide security for the war ships that were being built along the docks in New York Harbor. German submarines were sinking allied shipping outside the coast on a daily basis and there was great fear of attack or sabotage by Nazi sympathizers. REFERENCE: But They Were Good to Their People But They Were Good to Their People 

The Mafia and the First Republic (1948-1992).


Reference: FBI 100 Years: An Unofficial History By Henry M. Holden

Fast Forward to 2011 (present days)

The Obama administration has sharply warned Pakistan that it must cut ties with a leading Taliban group based in the tribal region along the Afghan border and help eliminate its leaders, according to officials from both countries. In what amounts to an ultimatum, administration officials have indicated that the United States will act unilaterally if Pakistan does not comply. The message, delivered in high-level meetings and public statements over the past several days, reflects the belief of a growing number of senior administration officials that a years-long strategy of using persuasion and military assistance to influence Pakistani behavior has been ineffective. White House officials and Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta are said to be adamant in their determination to change the approach, according to officials who spoke on the condition of anonymity about internal administration deliberations. Although he declined to provide details, Panetta told reporters at the Pentagon on Tuesday that “we are going to take whatever steps are necessary to protect our forces” in Afghanistan from attacks by the Haqqani network, which has had a long relationship with Pakistan’s intelligence service. “We’ve continued to state that this cannot happen,” Panetta said of the Haqqani network strikes, including a Sept. 13 attack on the U.S. Embassy in Kabul. REFERENCE: U.S. sharpens warning to Pakistan By Karen DeYoung, Published: September 20 

Haqqani Network & US Threat to Pakistan - 1 (Aapas Ki Baat -- 21Sep 2011)


As Panetta spoke, new CIA Director David H. Petraeus was holding an unpublicized private meeting in Washington with his Pakistani counterpart, Lt. Gen. Ahmed Shuja Pasha. Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who met with Pakistan’s army chief in Madrid on Friday, said that the “proxy connection” between Pakistani intelligence and the Haqqani network was the focus of those discussions. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton is among a minority of administration officials still willing to express public sympathy for Pakistan’s weak civilian leaders as they face a growing threat from domestic terrorism and the politically powerful military. But during a 31 / 2-hour meeting in New York on Sunday with her Pakistani counterpart, she warned that Pakistan is fast losing friends in Washington, according to one official deeply familiar with the session. Clinton left the meeting with Pakistan’s assurance that “they recognize that these people are threats to Pakistan as well, and that no one should think that their relationship with the Haqqanis was more important than their relationship with the United States,” a senior administration official said. But another administration official emphasized the severity of the U.S. officials’ warning. “We are expressing the firm conviction that things have to change . . . in Miranshah and in Islamabad, as well,” this official said. Miranshah is the main population center in Pakistan’s North Waziristan region, where the Haqqani leadership is based. CIA drone attacks elsewhere in the region have avoided the city for fear of civilian casualties. REFERENCE: U.S. sharpens warning to Pakistan By Karen DeYoung, Published: September 20

Haqqani Network & US Threat to Pakistan - 2 (Aapas Ki Baat -- 21Sep 2011)


“It’s a reality that they’re not living in tents in the open,” the official acknowledged. But with Pakistani cooperation, “we know that there are ways to get at extremist leaders anywhere,” the official said, citing the past capture of senior al-Qaeda leaders during joint intelligence operations in the far larger cities of Karachi and Quetta. As U.S. commanders have claimed progress against the Taliban in southern Afghanistan, the allied Haqqani group has stepped up its efforts in the eastern part of the country and is now considered the principal threat to U.S. forces. The organization was formed by Jalaluddin Haqqani as one of the resistance groups fighting the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan in the 1980s, with U.S. and Pakistani assistance. In the Afghan civil war that followed, Haqqani sided with the Taliban forces that took power in Kabul in 1996. His fighters fled after the Taliban overthrow in late 2001 to Pakistan, where U.S. intelligence officials think they are in close coordination with al-Qaeda forces. Pakistani intelligence maintained close connections to the network, now operationally led by Sirajuddin Haqqani, the founder’s son, as a hedge against the future in Afghanistan. Two years ago, President Obama, in a letter to Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari, warned that Pakistan’s intelligence ties to extremist groups, including the Haqqanis, could “not continue.” At the time, Obama promised an expanded strategic relationship with Pakistan in exchange for action. REFERENCE: U.S. sharpens warning to Pakistan By Karen DeYoung, Published: September 20

Haqqani Network & US Threat to Pakistan - 3 (Aapas Ki Baat -- 21Sep 2011)


Since then, U.S. military and civilian aid to Pakistan has increased significantly, and the administration has repeatedly described Pakistan as a crucial partner in the fight against the Taliban in Afghanistan. U.S. diplomats have tried to foster working relationships between the often-estranged Afghan and Pakistani governments, as well as between Pakistan and India, its historical adversary. Intelligence and counterterrorism cooperation between the two governments has ebbed and flowed over that period, reaching a low point this year with several events, including the shooting death of two Pakistanis by a CIA contractor in January and the unilateral U.S. military raid that killed Osama bin Laden in his suburban Pakistani hideout in May. Several months of open estrangement were followed by a slow climb back to cooperation — although not against the Haqqanis — by late August. CIA officials noted some improvement in the intelligence relationship, although Pakistan has continued to refuse entreaties for long-term, multiple-entry CIA visas. Even as they have traded public barbs, U.S. and Pakistani military officials reached a tentative agreement this week to return at least 100 of about 200 U.S. military trainers whom Pakistan expelled earlier in the year. But recent attacks attributed to the Haqqani network in eastern Afghanistan, culminating in the embassy assault last week, appear to have abruptly changed attitudes within the senior levels of the administration. On Saturday, in a message approved at senior levels in Washington, Cameron Munter, the U.S. ambassador to Pakistan, told a radio interviewer in Islamabad that the United States had evidence “linking the Haqqani network to the Pakistan government.” Although U.S. officials said they are continuing to look for a way forward with Pakistan, at least two factors are likely to narrow the administration’s options. As the conflict continues, Pakistan has fewer friends in Congress, where budget-cutting zeal increasingly coincides with pressure to stop funding assistance to Pakistan. At the same time, the administration has grown increasingly determined to ease its way out of the Afghanistan conflict, and has diminishing patience for what it views as Pakistani impediments. “What’s different is that we have begun a transition” in Afghanistan, one administration official said. “We’ve got a credible program to build an effective Afghan security force, and transition is happening, whether people like it or not.” “For those who are wedded to the past — past relationships, past support structures — and for those who would destabilize Afghanistan,” the official said, “they’ve got to take account of the fact that things are different.” REFERENCE: U.S. sharpens warning to Pakistan By Karen DeYoung, Published: September 20 

Haqqani Network & US Threat to Pakistan - 4 (Aapas Ki Baat -- 21Sep 2011)


TEHRAN, March 11 (UPI) -- Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari says a proposed gas pipeline from Iran to India would generate much-needed new jobs and economic development. Speaking Wednesday at the 10th Summit of the Economic Cooperation Organization in Tehran, Zardari called for the speedy implementation of the so-called Peace Pipeline, the state-run Iranian news agency IRNA reported. The proposed $7.5 billion, 1,500-mile pipeline would transport natural gas from Iran's Pars field through Pakistan to India. It is opposed by the United States, which says it would bind its key South Asian allies too closely to Iran, analysts say. In the speech, Zardari cited "deeply-rooted ties between Iran and Pakistan" and said the two nations "shared many historical common points," IRNA paraphrased. Zardari also urged ECO member states use the global economic crisis as an opportunity, saying Asia has the ability to rev up its economic engines to overcome the situation, the news agency said. REFERENCE: Zardari, in Iran, backs 'Peace Pipeline' Published: March. 11, 2009 at 9:41 AM

TEHRAN Iran finalised a $7 billion “peace pipeline” deal on Sunday to export natural gas to Pakistan by 2015, Irans state television reported. “The deal was signed. Export of Irans gas to Pakistan will be launched by the end of 2015,” state TV reported. “For 25 years Iran will export one million cubic metres of natural gas to Pakistan per day,” it said. The project is crucial for Pakistan to avert a growing energy crisis already causing severe electricity shortages in the country of about 170 million, at the same time as it confronts Islamist militancy. Iran has the worlds second largest gas reserves after Russia but has struggled for years to develop its oil and gas resources. Iranian officials say the country needs $25 billion to develop its crucial energy industry. Sanctions by the West, political turmoil and construction delays have slowed Irans development as an exporter. The pipeline will connect Irans giant South Fars gas field with Pakistans southern Baluchistan and Sindh provinces. State television said the pipeline was 1,000 km (620 miles) long, with about 907 km of it already built. Dubbed the “peace pipeline,” the project has been planned since the 1990s and originally would have extended from Pakistan to its old rival, India. New Delhi has been reluctant to join the project because of its long-running distrust of Pakistan. Under a deal signed in March, Pakistan will be allowed to charge a transit fee if the proposed pipeline is eventually extended to India. The United States has tried to discourage India and Pakistan from any deal with Iran because of Tehrans disputed nuclear programme, which the West fears is a cover to build bombs. Iran, hit by a fourth round of UN sanctions on Wednesday over its refusal to suspend its uranium enrichment activities, denies any such ambitions. REFERENCE: Iran approves “peace pipeline” deal with Pakistan June 13, 2010

Seymour Hersh- US is funding Al-Qaeda to counter Iran - 1


RICHARD Holbrook, US Special Envoy for Pakistan mandated to secure and promote US agenda in the region, is now a familiar figure with frequent visits to Islamabad. He has gradually become more intrusive in Pakistan politics and governance and consequently more unwelcome. Holbrook carries an unsavoury record and reputation for his diplomatic exploits in Latin America. During his recent call on Islamabad, Holbrook evinced deep interest in the energy requirements of Pakistan and offered $1billion to boost the energy sector, stating that “US is determined to support Pakistan for peace and stability, for fight against terrorism and for alleviation of poverty”.

The offer however is not an altruistic as Holbrook made it out. The severe energy crisis that Pakistan is facing today has had enormous negative impact on its economic development and political stability. The long power outages across the country has made it an issue of extreme volatility causing suffering in the daily life of Pakistani and putting Pakistan`s economic future in serious jeopardy . Pakistan`s energy requirements are increasing in geometrical ratio, and not only economic growth but political stability is directly linked with the availability of adequate energy resources. Pakistan initiated discussions with Iran in 1985 for construction of a natural gas pipeline linking Karachi with the South Pars natural gas field. The agreement called “peace pipeline” was signed by the president of Iran and Pakistan in Turkey on June 4, 2009, after considerable delay and lengthy negotiations, on price formula, security guarantee and transit royalties.

Iran has some 15.7 per cent of the world`s natural gas reserves, second only to Russia. Although its share in the global market does not reflect it, primarily due to US sanctions against Iran since the Islamic Revolution in 1980. However, now Iran is following an aggressive export policy and it is expected that given the ever increasing demand for energy by China, India and Europe, Iran`s total gas export will reach $18 billion in 2025. The pipeline would run about 1,115 km in Iran, 705 km in Pakistan and 850 km in India, had it joined IPI. Total investment is estimated at $7.04 billion and may take 4-5 years for completion. The US has continued its opposition to the proposed pipeline and urged India and Pakistan to abandon the project and instead explore alternative sources, such as coal, wind or solar energy. Samuel Bodman, Energy Secretary under Bush administration conveyed US concerns “If IPI is allowed to be formed in our judgment, this will contribute to the development of nuclear weapons by Iran. We need to stop this”. The US has periodically conveyed its concerns at the highest level. This policy remains constant and now even more strident in the context of Iran nuclear standoff with US.

Despite the fact that energy needs of Pakistan are desperate and immediate, the US ignoring this consideration has mounted strong pressure on Pakistan to abandon Iran pipeline accord. Ambassador Holbrook in his discussion with Pakistani authorities assured them that the US was well aware of the energy crisis confronting Pakistan. He told them that if Pakistan foregoes the agreement providing gas import from Iran the US would help import electricity from Tajikistan through Afghanistan via Wakhan corridor. It would construct high voltage power transmission lines from Tajikistan to Pakistan. Holbrook assured that within the next four years US will assist another mega project in Pakistan costing 1 billion dollars. India was involved in the IPI project in the beginning but succumbed to the US pressure and opted out. Pakistan under the circumstances is not likely to resist any longer. The World Bank has also joined the US effort and warned Pakistan that major multilateral donors will stay away from the projects due to US opposition and hence the safe course for Pakistan would be to give up the project of Iran. It has instead proposed gas line project with Tajikistan known as TAPI.

TAPI is a 1680-km, 56-inch diameter gas pipeline starting from Dauletabad field in Turkmenistan to Fazilka at the Pakistan-India border, passing through Herat and Kandahar in Afghanistan and Multan in Pakistan. It is estimated that the pipeline will carry $3 to 5 trillion oil and natural gas from the Caspian Sea basin via Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, and Pakistan. Two oil refineries and four thermal power houses, with a 1,000 MW capacity will also be built for shipment of gas to other Asian markets. Pakistan government has already awarded the contract for laying the TAPI gas pipeline project to US-based International Oil Company (IOC). The four nation — Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan, India (TAPI) pipeline — project is part of the grand US design to set up a regional power grid stretching from Almaty to New Delhi. Central Asia with abundance of existing and potential oil gas and electricity sources can meet the growing demands of South Asia and also advance regional economic development and integration.

Given the US strategic interest in TAPI investment problems associated with IPI are not likely to prove a hurdle. ADB has shown interest in funding the project and agreed to a comprehensive review of the feasibility study to invite foreign investment. The four partners have agreed to formulate a long term pricing mechanism and a draft of the gas sales and purchase agreement would be ready soon. The issues of payment of transit fees to Afghanistan and Pakistan taxation structure and consortium procedures will be finalised by the end year. The supply is to begin in 2015. While the prospects for TAPI appear bright, the challenges of security situation in Afghanistan and the state of relations between India and Pakistan put a question mark on the completion of the project within stipulated time frame. The open and determined US opposition to IP project makes it highly improbable that the project signed between Pakistan and Iran on June 4, 2009 could be implemented. The project is not likely to get any investors and hence the project appears to be still born. Pakistan and Iran have already signed the Gas Sales Purchase Agreement and the deadline for the submission of conditions precedents (CP) by Pakistan was September 5, 2009 which in view of the constraint explained above has been extended until this month. The prevailing circumstances leave little space for Pakistan and it may have to opt out of the agreement. The stakes for Pakistan are very high. Pakistan`s diplomacy is facing its severest test. The negative impact on our bilateral relations with Iran could be well imagined in the event of Pakistan`s withdrawal. Pakistan should continue meeting its obligations under IPI to protect its national interests and avoid friction with the United States. There are reports of China`s interest in IPI. Pakistan should simultaneously intensify its diplomatic efforts to bring China on board, which given the rising cost of fuel and galloping needs of Chinese burgeoning economy may not be difficult to achieve. This is no small consideration for the sort of influence Pakistan would gain in resisting US pressure vis-Ã -vis IPI should TAPI run into serious schedule delays due to volatile security situation in Afghanistan. The writher is a former ambassador. REFERENCE: Energy crisis & Pakistan`s dilemma By Tayyab Siddiqui February 7, 2010
Seymour Hersh- US is funding Al-Qaeda to counter Iran - 2


WITH energy crisis feared to worsen next year because of the doubling of natural gas shortfalls, the only apparent hope to keep the economic engine running is the swift completion of the Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline project and import of liquefied natural gas. Over the next 20 years or so, the country is likely to depend primarily on timely realisation of these two projects. The country has already lost decades in development of cheap hydro and coal resources for power generation, resulting in the rising power rates and long hours of loadshedding. But the opposition to Iran-Pakistan pipeline has not died down. During the recent bilateral strategic dialogue concluded in Islamabad, the US officials clearly told Islamabad that Obama administration did not appreciate the gas import plan. They have tried to raise doubts over Iran`s reliability as a gas supplier and Tehran`s credibility not to seek tariff revisions after completion of the project. However they were surprised over the rates on which the two neighbourly countries have struck the deal.

At current oil prices, the Iranian gas is estimated to cost Pakistan around $9 per MMBTU (million British thermal unit) and the price is capped at a maximum of $100 a barrel. This could be used only for power production because of its comparatively higher rates when compared with domestic gas price of about $4.5 per MMBTU. While opposing the Iranian gas project, the US has not shown any interest in going deep into Sui field in Balochistan and in exploitation of over a trillion cubic feet of tight gas in small pockets across the country at economical rates. America is known to have made technological advancement for tapping such difficult resources. Pakistan had sought the US assistance for technical studies, surveys and latest production techniques to maximise domestic production of gas including from deep, shallow and tight horizons. This makes easier for Islamabad to resist the US pressure against Iranian gas project. It would be in the best interest of Iran and Pakistan to stick to the `peace pipeline` agreement, honour their mutual commitments and move swiftly to complete the multi-billion dollar project as early as possible.

The agreements entail first gas flows by end 2014 which could be advanced by one year if domestic gas companies – SNGPL and SSGCL – are engaged to construct about 750-kilometer of pipeline. More so, because they are well versed with the terrain, routes and other technical details inside their country`s borders, given their vast existing pipeline network – one of the world`s largest integrated transmission system. The two companies have indicated to complete the pipeline in 36 months compared with estimates of minimum 48 months, presented by a consultant who had been engaged without a transparent process as required under the public procurement rules. Simultaneously, the LNG import is the key to resolution of short-term energy needs. The prime minister has decided to go ahead with the contract finalised with 4Gas and GDF Suez for import of 3.5 million tons per annum (500 million cubic feet per day), on which a lot of time has been lost due to unnecessary litigations. At the same time, the prime minister has agreed to allow other firms to bring in additional quantities of LNG. The benchmark prices agreed for contracted project would, however, need to be kept in mind to ensure that energy costs remain within affordable limits.

Officials estimate that the gas shortfall is likely to almost double to more than two billion cubic feet a day (BCFD) even if the liquefied natural gas (LNG) imports planned over the next few months materialise. The most important thing is to put all resources and efforts together to expedite and enhance domestic oil and gas production. The OGDCL, the PPL and others have been sitting on vast hydrocarbon resources for decades because of bureaucratic wrangling and security reasons, which should end, given the increasing energy shortages. As of now, the gap between gas demand and supply stand at around one BCFD this year and the plan to import gas from Iran through a proposed pipeline would, at best, materialise in four to five years. The shortage of one BCFD this winter, would go up to 2.1 BCFD by next year. The demand and supply estimates suggest that the gas shortfalls would increase by more than 300 per cent to 6.5 BCFD by 2020.

The projections imply that while gas demand would maintain a steady increase over the next 10 years — from 4.8 BCFD now to 8.6 BCFD in 2020 — the supplies would register a further decline, from four BCFD this year to 2.11 BCFD by 2020. Over the next two years, however, the supplies would slightly increase by 0.5 BCFD because of LNG imports. The estimates suggest the shortfalls would increase despite a projected gas import through the IPI pipeline in 2014 and LNG imports next year because of the decrease in domestic production. These estimates indicate that shortfalls would be even higher if taken at the historic 6.5 per cent growth rate rather than 4.5 per cent assumed earlier. Many believe that the demand, supply and shortfall estimates were still conservative given the fact that these had been prepared keeping in mind the current downturn in economic activities. That would mean even higher reliance on imported fuels like diesel and furnace oil to meet electricity demand. The oil import bill last year stood at about $9.5 billion and is forecast to be around $11.6 billion this year. If the gas import pipeline is not completed, oil import bill could reach $15 billion in only two years. In the recent past, the previous government had planned five major initiatives to meet energy requirements, including three gas import pipelines, Gwadar port as an energy hub and LNG import. There has been no progress on these three pipeline projects, while building energy facilities at Gwadar has remained a pipe dream chiefly because of security situation. REFERENCE: Energy security options By Khaleeq Kiani June 21, 2010
Seymour Hersh- US is funding Al-Qaeda to counter Iran - 3


KARACHI: A US State Department official in a meeting urged President Asif Ali Zardari against accepting Iran’s offer of concessional oil for Pakistan and providing Iran with a foothold in Pakistan, a ‘Secret’ American diplomatic cable made available to Dawn reveals. The meeting between Richard Boucher, US Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia during the Bush administration, and President Zardari took place on October 18, 2008 at the Aiwan-e-Sadr, during which Mr Zardari apprised the visiting official of the Iranian offer that the President “did not believe he could refuse.” “How could he go to the National Assembly and tell them Iran had offered the assistance and Pakistan had turned it down, he asked rhetorically,” the then US Ambassador to Pakistan Anne W. Patterson wrote in the cable dated October 22, 2008, referring to President Zardari. She added that, “Boucher reminded him of Ambassador Haqqani’s recent conversation with Deputy Secretary Negroponte in which the Deputy cautioned against providing Iran with a toehold in Pakistan.” The cable illustrates how US officials tried influencing Pakistan’s policy not only with regard to Iran but also indicates how and with whom Pakistan had been dealing with at the time in order to meet its energy requirements. The American caution about Irani oil is consistent with the US government’s efforts to isolate Iran both militarily and economically. The oil offer was discussed months after Pakistan’s Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) had approved the revised gas purchase agreement between Islamabad and Tehran for the import of gas through the Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline (formerly the Iran-Pakistan-India gas pipeline). The US has continually expressed its reservations over the project from which India withdrew in 2008. REFERENCE: Don’t provide Iran with a foothold, US told Pak By Qurat ul ain Siddiqui | From the Newspaper (6 hours ago) Today
Seymour Hersh- US is funding Al-Qaeda to counter Iran - 4


Months after the talks with Mr Boucher, President Zardari, in a discussion with a Congressional delegation headed by US Senator Patrick Leahy, again referred to Iran’s offer to provide “oil, gas and electricity to Pakistan”, another cable dated May 26, 2009 by Ms Patterson detailing the meeting states. Mr Zardari told the delegation during the May 25, 2009 meeting that “Pakistan desperately needed energy resources” and that “no on else – especially the Saudis” was ready to help. However, in a possible attempt to please the delegation, he went on to say: “I need you more than anyone else, so I will take my cue from you. Perhaps now it will be possible to work with Iran on energy issues.” Interestingly, however, Ms Patterson noted in the cable that President Zardari asked for the “cue” a day after he and Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad had signed an inter-governmental framework declaration to support the Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline agreement between the oil ministries of Pakistan and Iran. Moreover, around the time of the Boucher-Zardari meeting, along with pursuing the Iran gas pipeline project, Pakistan was in talks with the Chinese government over a deal to build two additional nuclear power plants for the country, once construction of the Chashma II reactor was completed. A contract to cooperate in building the two new nuclear reactors, commonly referred to as Chashma III and IV, at the Chashma atomic complex was eventually signed on June 8, 2010. The development occurred despite misgivings on part of the US and other governments which have every now and then stated that China should seek approval of the reactors from the Nuclear Suppliers Group, a group of nuclear supplier countries that seeks to reduce nuclear proliferation and of which China is a member. On the other hand, the US government was almost simultaneously in touch with Saudi officials regarding Saudi-Pak negotiations to assist Pakistan “by deferring crude oil payments”, a previously published cable dated July 30, 2008 states. It further states that if the US government assessed that a “rapid implementation” of the Saudi offer was “critically important to the Pakistan government’s stability, it will likely take USG intervention at the highest levels with senior Saudi officials…to secure its rapid implementation.” REFERENCE: Cables referenced: WikiLeaks #174700, 208526, 164170 Don’t provide Iran with a foothold, US told Pak By Qurat ul ain Siddiqui | From the Newspaper (6 hours ago) Today
Seymour hersh and Scott Ritter on Iran 1-3


The arrest of Jundallah leader Abdolmalek Rigi on Tuesday should have a positive impact on Iran-Pakistan relations. The terrorist leader and his deputy were arrested by Iranian security forces when a Bishkek-bound flight was diverted to Iran to catch a man whose organisation was responsible for a deadly terrorist attack last October that killed 35 civilians, besides seven revolutionary guards. While Tehran never really joined the `do more` chorus to pressure Islamabad for action against the plethora of banned — and not banned — militant outfits in this country, the Iranian government had serious reservations about the efficacy of Pakistan`s policy, especially with regard to the anti-Iran terrorists operating close to its border in Pakistani Balochistan. On a visit to this country following last October`s crime, Iranian Interior Minister Mostafa Mohammad Najjar reportedly provided Islamabad with proof of Jundallah`s activities here and its use of Pakistani soil for acts of terrorism against his country. For its part, Islamabad was vocal in denying that Rigi was ever based in Pakistan. But the ease with which militants of various nationalities have operated in this country for years has given a hollow ring to official protestations. Look at the most recent example Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, one of the Afghan Taliban`s top commanders, was arrested earlier this month in Karachi. He reportedly lived in Pakistan for several years and seemingly enjoyed the freedom to direct Taliban operations inside Afghanistan. Many people have aired suspicions that the so-called Quetta Shura leadership has started moving to the port city now. Against this backdrop, Jundallah`s claim that Pakistani intelligence helped in Rigi`s arrest should serve to remove some misunderstandings between Tehran and Islamabad. Additionally, along with Mullah Baradar`s arrest it may also mark a dramatically different, and welcome, approach by the Pakistani security set-up. REFERENCE: Jundallah chief`s arrest February 25, 2010 Iran's Arrest of an Extremist Foe: Did Pakistan Help? By Ishaan Tharoor Thursday, Feb. 25, 2010,8599,1968126,00.html
Seymour hersh and Scott Ritter on Iran 2-3


Annals of National Security - The Iran Plans Would President Bush go to war to stop Tehran from getting the bomb? by Seymour M. Hersh April 17, 2006 The Bush Administration, while publicly advocating diplomacy in order to stop Iran from pursuing a nuclear weapon, has increased clandestine activities inside Iran and intensified planning for a possible major air attack. Current and former American military and intelligence officials said that Air Force planning groups are drawing up lists of targets, and teams of American combat troops have been ordered into Iran, under cover, to collect targeting data and to establish contact with anti-government ethnic-minority groups. The officials say that President Bush is determined to deny the Iranian regime the opportunity to begin a pilot program, planned for this spring, to enrich uranium. American and European intelligence agencies, and the International Atomic Energy Agency (I.A.E.A.), agree that Iran is intent on developing the capability to produce nuclear weapons. But there are widely differing estimates of how long that will take, and whether diplomacy, sanctions, or military action is the best way to prevent it. Iran insists that its research is for peaceful use only, in keeping with the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, and that it will not be delayed or deterred. There is a growing conviction among members of the United States military, and in the international community, that President Bush’s ultimate goal in the nuclear confrontation with Iran is regime change. Iran’s President, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, has challenged the reality of the Holocaust and said that Israel must be “wiped off the map.” Bush and others in the White House view him as a potential Adolf Hitler, a former senior intelligence official said. “That’s the name they’re using. They say, ‘Will Iran get a strategic weapon and threaten another world war?’ ” REFERENCE: Annals of National Security - The Iran Plans Would President Bush go to war to stop Tehran from getting the bomb? by Seymour M. Hersh April 17, 2006 Target Iran: Former UN Weapons Inspector Scott Ritter and Investigative Journalist Seymour Hersh on White House Plans for Regime Change December 21, 2006
Seymour hersh and Scott Ritter on Iran 3-3

Annals of National Security - The Coming Wars What the Pentagon can now do in secret. by Seymour M. Hersh January 24, 2005 George W. Bush’s reëlection was not his only victory last fall. The President and his national-security advisers have consolidated control over the military and intelligence communities’ strategic analyses and covert operations to a degree unmatched since the rise of the post-Second World War national-security state. Bush has an aggressive and ambitious agenda for using that control—against the mullahs in Iran and against targets in the ongoing war on terrorism—during his second term. The C.I.A. will continue to be downgraded, and the agency will increasingly serve, as one government consultant with close ties to the Pentagon put it, as “facilitators” of policy emanating from President Bush and Vice-President Dick Cheney. This process is well under way. Despite the deteriorating security situation in Iraq, the Bush Administration has not reconsidered its basic long-range policy goal in the Middle East: the establishment of democracy throughout the region. Bush’s reëlection is regarded within the Administration as evidence of America’s support for his decision to go to war. It has reaffirmed the position of the neoconservatives in the Pentagon’s civilian leadership who advocated the invasion, including Paul Wolfowitz, the Deputy Secretary of Defense, and Douglas Feith, the Under-secretary for Policy. According to a former high-level intelligence official, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld met with the Joint Chiefs of Staff shortly after the election and told them, in essence, that the naysayers had been heard and the American people did not accept their message. Rumsfeld added that America was committed to staying in Iraq and that there would be no second-guessing. “This is a war against terrorism, and Iraq is just one campaign. The Bush Administration is looking at this as a huge war zone,” the former high-level intelligence official told me. “Next, we’re going to have the Iranian campaign. We’ve declared war and the bad guys, wherever they are, are the enemy. This is the last hurrah—we’ve got four years, and want to come out of this saying we won the war on terrorism.” Bush and Cheney may have set the policy, but it is Rumsfeld who has directed its implementation and has absorbed much of the public criticism when things went wrong—whether it was prisoner abuse in Abu Ghraib or lack of sufficient armor plating for G.I.s’ vehicles in Iraq. Both Democratic and Republican lawmakers have called for Rumsfeld’s dismissal, and he is not widely admired inside the military. Nonetheless, his reappointment as Defense Secretary was never in doubt. REFERENCE: Annals of National Security - The Coming Wars What the Pentagon can now do in secret. by Seymour M. Hersh January 24, 2005 Target Iran: Former UN Weapons Inspector Scott Ritter and Investigative Journalist Seymour Hersh on White House Plans for Regime Change December 21, 2006


2008: Do not to allow Iran toehold in Pakistan: US

174700 10/22/2008 8:58 

08ISLAMABAD3339 Embassy Islamabad SECRET//NOFORN “VZCZCXRO1234


DE RUEHIL #3339/01 2960858


R 220858Z OCT 08



















E.O. 12958: DECL: 10/22/2018




Classified By: Anne W. Patterson, Reasons 1.4 (b), (d)

1. (S/NF) Summary: In a wide-ranging discussion with visiting SCA Assistant Secretary Boucher, President Zardari expressed complete satisfaction with his just concluded visit to China, reviewed planning for the Friends of Pakistan, and reiterated his determination to press the fight against extremism and the militancy in the tribal areas. He linked his ability to sustain the counter-insurgency fight to progress on addressing Pakistan,s economic woes, however, and chastised the IMF for only wanting to &take away8 in its negotiations. Zardari alerted Boucher to Iran’s offer of concessional oil for Pakistan, an offer he did not believe he could refuse. Boucher reminded him of the Deputy Secretary’s recent caution not to allow Iran to gain a toehold in Pakistan. End Summary.

2. (SBU) Visiting Assistant Secretary for South and Central Asian Affairs Richard Boucher called on President Zardari at the Aiwan-e-Sadr, October 18. He was accompanied by the Ambassador, DCM (notetaker), and SCA Senior Advisor Hayden. Minister of Information Sherry Rehman joined Zardari.

China Visit


3. (S/NF) Zardari told Boucher his visit to China was

&great.8 He confirmed that the Chinese had committed to building two additional nuclear power plants for Pakistan ) Chashma 3 and 4. He noted, however, that construction would not start until the completion of the Chashma 2 reactor, which he anticipated would require an additional five years. Commenting that the Chinese were providing only old technology, Zardari said that Pakistan had no choice but to accept &junk.8 Boucher told Zardari we would examine the implications of the new nuclear deal vis–vis the International Atomic Energy Agency and let the Pakistanis know if we anticipated any problems with the deal.

4. (S/NF) Zardari also told Boucher that the Chinese had committed to providing assistance to Pakistan,s security forces. Arguing that China was Pakistan,s only affordable option for needed security items, Zardari said the government plans to acquire armored vehicles, body armor, and small arms from China. The Chinese also plan to provide large scanners to Pakistan to help check the contents of trucks. Boucher and the Ambassador reminded Zardari that the U.S. is working with the Frontier Corps on a comprehensive train and equip program. (Comment: Embassy is preparing a letter to Zardari reviewing the details of the U.S. government’s extensive support to the Frontier Corps. End Comment)

5. (C) Although silent on the question of possible Chinese balance of payments support to Pakistan, Zardari lauded Chinese &out-of-box8 thinking about business investment in Pakistan. As an example, he described a project to build a dam that would irrigate land that Zardari would then grant to women, who would grow flowers on the land for export to the Emirates. The Chinese will manage the marketing for the

Friends of Pakistan


6. (C) Zardari confirmed that he wants to formally change the name of the group to Friends of Democratic Pakistan. In response to Boucher’s question about the Saudi position, he provided Boucher with a convoluted description of his discussions with Prince Turki bin Abdullah, who requested Zardari,s participation in the Interfaith Dialogue that the King is organizing in New York. In exchange, Zardari expects that the Saudis will be full participants in the Friends group (see septel).

7. (C) As for other possible additions to the Friends group, Boucher suggested that Spain and the Scandinavians might be ISLAMABAD 00003339 002 OF 003 good additions. Zardari assented, and asked Boucher if the U.S. would support Libya’s inclusion, to which Boucher agreed. Zardari suggested to Boucher that he would like China added to the steering group. Boucher was open to the idea but noted that the steering committee needed to remain small.

8. (C) Boucher reminded Zardari that the Friends group is not a &checkbook8 organization. He noted that we need to sit with the steering group and consider issues like membership and the role of the UN. We are hoping that the UN will help drive the process by providing a secretariat function. After the next meeting in Abu Dhabi, the U.S. vision would be to launch a series of experts meeting that would consider Pakistani policies and initiatives in a sector-by-sector review.

9. (S/NF) In an aside, Zardari mentioned that Iran has offered to provide Pakistan with concessional oil. How could he go to the National Assembly and tell them Iran had offered the assistance and Pakistan had turned it down, he asked rhetorically. Boucher reminded him of Ambassador Haqqani,s recent conversation on this issue with Deputy Secretary Negroponte in which the Deputy cautioned against providing Iran with a toehold in Pakistan.



10. (S) Zardari stressed repeatedly his determination to carry through with the fight against extremism and militancy. &I don’t believe in talking to the Taliban,8 he said. &We won’t do it on our side of the border.8 He noted that he has built a good relationship with the military and praised the leadership of Chief of Army Staff Kayani, ISI Director General Pasha, and Frontier Corps General Tariq Khan. To challenge the fundamentalists, however, Zardari needs to gain the confidence of the Army, the National Assembly, and the people. To do that, he believes he must address the economic situation and demonstrate that he can deliver on his economic promises. Zardari chastised the IMF for just wanting to &take away8 from Pakistan in the negotiations over a bailout package.

11. (C) In response to Boucher,s question about the National Assembly debate on Pakistan,s counter-insurgency strategy, Zardari expressed confidence that he would succeed in winning from the Assembly a consensus resolution on the government,s policy. (N.B.: A day earlier, both National Security Advisor Durrani and Information Minister Rehman expressed skepticism that an acceptable consensus resolution was achievable.) Nawaz Sharif,s Pakistan Muslim League is offering no help on Pakistan,s counter-terrorism policy, Zardari opined. Rehman added that Nawaz and Chaudhry Nisar have a &good cop/bad cop8 routine. Nawaz says good things about his party’s commitment to cooperation, but Nisar does the opposite in the Assembly.

12. (C) Describing his legislative strategy going forward, Zardari said that proposed revisions to the Frontier Crimes Regulations (FCR) are nearly ready to bring to the Assembly. He anticipates that the extension of the Political Parties Act to the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (permitting political parties to organize and campaign in the tribal areas under the same regulations as apply to the rest of the country) would be introduced within three months. Zardari also described a de-radicalization program he plans on introducing in the Assembly. Zardari will propose a criminal regime for &small fries8 that would sentence them to seven years in a &special prison8 to be constructed for handling reforming militants. While in the prison, the militants would receive job training and would receive lenient treatment, including conjugal rights. &I won’t stop pressing,8 Zardari declared, &either he (the militant) dies or he takes the option.8 Anyone caught a second time after going through the reform program will be sent to prison for ISLAMABAD 00003339 003 OF 003 life, Zardari declared.

13. (S) Turning to the fighting in Bajaur, Zardari asserted that the government needs a mechanism to get compensation into the hands of the victims of the fighting, suggesting that he thought one billion U.S. dollars might be sufficient. Responding that we anticipate the financial requirement would be less than that, Boucher and the Ambassador assured Zardari we are looking for ways that we can help. Zardari asked if the Friends of Democratic Pakistan might be of help, but Boucher reiterated that such assistance would likely fall outside the mandate of the group. Zardari then suggested that the Saudis could provide the necessary funds, noting that &the problem leads back to them.8 Rehman interjected that the National Assembly members were asking how the militants were getting their funds and raised the flow of funds from the Gulf to extremists in Pakistan. (DCM observed that efforts to stop funding terrorist groups were not helped by Pakistan,s obstruction of work in the UN 1267 Committee, mentioning specifically the hold on Katrina. Zardari expressed surprise that Pakistan was playing such a role, and Rehman made note of the issue.)

14. (S) As for the Pakistan-Afghanistan mini-jirga scheduled for Islamabad in a week’s time, Zardari expressed the hope that it will re-occupy political space in the tribal areas. He expressed the hope that the jirga could re-consolidate the government,s position among the majority of the tribes, noting that the government,s greatest challenge in rooting out the extremists is when they are able to shelter among the population in the area. As for leadership of the Pakistani delegation to the jirga, Sherry Rehman noted that Asfandyar Wali Khan, who had been proposed as the senior Pakistani, will not be back in Pakistan in time for the meeting. She suggested that Asfandyar is in &bad shape8 following the terrorist attack on his home near Charsadda. Zardari indicated separately that he is helping Asfandyar relocate his family to Dubai and would provide him with an armored vehicle when he returns to Pakistan.

Friends: the U.S. and the UK


15. (C) Zardari mused about the need to reach out to the new U.S. Administration after the elections and suggested that he would like to organize a &road show8 to visit the U.S. and explain Pakistan,s situation. Boucher suggested that such an effort could emphasize U.S.-Pakistani cooperation on the border coordination centers, the Joint Military Operations Coordination Center, and the Frontier Corps train and equip program.

16. (S/NF) As for the UK, Zardari expressed some concern  that their support was getting wobbly. He believes that their views reflect their conviction that Zardari would fail and would be replaced by Nawaz Sharif. Boucher thought that the concerns are more a reflection of attitude than policy. If Zardari achieves results, he asserted, then the British will come around.


- – - -

17. (S/NF) Zardari was clearly buoyed by his visit to China and in good spirits as he looks ahead to the serious challenges that confront him and the country. He ran through numerous ideas for new initiatives to deal with the political, economic, and security problems, nearly all of which come with high price tags. In that regard, Zardari continues to express considerable optimism that, ultimately, his friends will ride to his rescue despite little evidence to support that view.


2008: Do not to allow Iran toehold in Pakistan: US


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