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No release of Bin Laden death pic
Today's Headlines
Headline Comments [Views]
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-Obits-
Obama took SIXTEEN HOURS to make up his mind about Bin Laden mission
Posted by: tipper || 05/04/2011 07:33 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [427 views] Top|| File under:

#1  And from the fringe....

Posted by: Besoeker || 05/04/2011 7:56 Comments || Top||

#2  That doesn't sound too bad to me. It wasn't an extremely urgent mission, and potential repercussions were severe (accidentally starting a nuclear war between India and Pakistan, perhaps?) Still, it shouldn't have come as a surprise to the President - planning has been going on for months in detail, and years in general, so the only real decision should have been now or not now. One wonders if the Ditherer-in-Chief was motivated to make the call when some handler reminded him that his NOT making the call might/would probably leak out sooner or later.
Posted by: Glenmore || 05/04/2011 7:59 Comments || Top||

#3  I'm willing to cut him some slack on this one, for the reasons Glenmore has already mentioned. However, I don't want to hear any more about GWB being indecisive because he took seven minutes to finish his school visit on the morning of 9/11/01.
Posted by: Mike || 05/04/2011 9:02 Comments || Top||

#4  Making his own mind up after sixteen hours is better than having it made up for him by semi-rebellious subordinates after months of intransigence, which is the story-line of Besoeker's link.

But that "White House Insider" story is way too... omniscient and confident for a supposed single-source "inside scoop". It's also way too "too good to check", by which I mean it hits all of my confirmation biases, as well as those of the majority of the commenters here at Rantburg. Distrust nebulous anonymous stories which tell you everything you believe is secretly true. That way lies the entrance to an iron-bound echo chamber with no exit.
Posted by: Mitch H. || 05/04/2011 9:03 Comments || Top||

#5  Personally I think the final deciding factor was probably Pineta begging Obama to grab him while he was still the CIA guy, and telling him if Osama slipped away the Democrats would be unelectable for decades.
Posted by: rjschwarz || 05/04/2011 9:13 Comments || Top||

#6  16 hours doesn't seem unreasonable to me. We got UBL. Slick Willy Clinton had opportunities to get UBL and screwed it up. The donks didn't want to screw it up this time.
Posted by: JohnQC || 05/04/2011 9:22 Comments || Top||

#7  It took longer for Nancy Pelosi to come around. The dishonesty of this woman is appalling. She said recently:

The death of Osama bin Laden marks the most significant development in our fight against al-Qaida. . . . I salute President Obama, his national security team, Director Panetta, our men and women in the intelligence community and military, and other nations who supported this effort for their leadership in achieving this major accomplishment. . . . [T]he death of Osama bin Laden is historic. . . .
Posted by: JohnQC || 05/04/2011 9:41 Comments || Top||

#8  While the "i" and the "o" are adjacent on my keyboard, the secrect source in Besoeker's link kept saying CoC, when I think he meant CiC, right - Commander in Chief? Maybe not such a good source?
Posted by: Bobby || 05/04/2011 11:29 Comments || Top||

#9  CoC in that context almost certainly means "Chain of Command", Bobby. Namely, that people were doing end-runs around each other, and making decisions for the President instead of accepting his decisions as he made them.

I don't know, Stephen Green just made a pretty good argument in favor of "White House Insider", namely, that the White House PR apparat certainly don't *act* like they were in the loop & properly prepared. In fact, they're behaving rather like sulky, confused children on a lit stage, being forced to go through the motions by some unseen offstage guardian or teacher.
Posted by: Mitch H. || 05/04/2011 13:01 Comments || Top||

#10  It’s easy to Monday morning quarterback decisions that were made by President Obama. He is not the star in a the movie “Navy Seals” or a character in the game “Call of Duty” so none of us know the complete story behind this. I have heard at least five different versions that include as few as six and as many as 50 personnel involved.
Whatever time it took (18 seconds, minutes, or hours) does not diminish two things: The mission was a success and it was a VERY risky decision for the U.S. (and the President). Looking at the room of people with the President watching the live feed I can’t imagine any of them advising him to go through with this mission or making that decision if they were in his shoes. There were so many things that could have gone wrong and we were lucky that we had a backup to the 1st chopper that went kaput.
I am not a huge President Obama fan and I can see where he is going to milk this for all the publicity he can get. IMHO it’s his victory as much as Americas as much as those brave men who landed in that compound. Good job SEALS and good call President Obama!
Posted by: Cyber Sarge || 05/04/2011 13:15 Comments || Top||

#11  (accidentally starting a nuclear war between India and Pakistan, perhaps?)

Sorry, unclear. Does that go in the Pluses or Minuses column?
Posted by: SteveS || 05/04/2011 13:54 Comments || Top||

#12  This is the same genius who needed a TelePrompTer to speak to grade school kids. In fact, it recently came out that it costs $100k per year to teach him how to read his TelePrompTer. This guy is no brain trust. Probably took 16 hours to explain to him where Pakistan is and why some guys named "seal" wanted to go there.
Posted by: Iblis || 05/04/2011 16:43 Comments || Top||


Bin Laden's young daughter 'saw father shot dead'
Osama bin Laden's young daughter has told Pakistani officials that she saw her father shot and killed by armed Americans, an official with Pakistan's spy agency said on Tuesday.

The official, who asked not to be named because of the sensitivity of the subject, said the daughter, whom he described as being 12 or 13-years-old, was one of eight or nine children in the house when a team of US Navy SEALs stormed the complex by helicopter, early on Monday.

"We have no independent confirmation of Osama bin Laden being there or dying there except what we got from the daughter," said the official, a member of Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence agency.

The official said that based on interviews with the daughter and others in the house, Pakistani authorities now believe that bin Laden had been living in the Abbottabad compound for "some months".

The Pakistani official's comments came as new details emerged about the men who built the house and were also killed, and as Pakistan broke its silence and denounced the raid as a "unauthorised unilateral action" that "cannot be taken as a rule".

Posted by: tipper || 05/04/2011 06:34 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [345 views] Top|| File under:

#1  That's unfortunate.
Posted by: Glenmore || 05/04/2011 7:19 Comments || Top||

#2  the daughter, whom he described as being 12 or 13-years-old

She's lucky it were eeeevul mericans instead of fellow muslims: she would have been killed---after being raped.
Posted by: gr(o)mgoru || 05/04/2011 7:23 Comments || Top||

#3  One reason not to become a criminal mastermind is the risk that one's wife and offspring might one day have to see such things. Mr. bin Laden ought to have taken this into consideration as he settled on a career. That he didn't demonstrates his evil inclination in matters small as well as large.
Posted by: trailing wife || 05/04/2011 7:35 Comments || Top||

#4  So she was in Daddy's bedroom at 1am?
Posted by: Grunter || 05/04/2011 7:58 Comments || Top||

#5  Grunter, that's an evil thought. More likely she and his wife fled to him once the bullets started flying.
Posted by: Glenmore || 05/04/2011 8:04 Comments || Top||

#6  Bin Laden's young daughter 'saw father shot dead'

Given the choice, I'll take a headshot over a leap from an 80 story building with my arss on fire.
Posted by: Besoeker || 05/04/2011 8:18 Comments || Top||

#7  Cry me a river, kid.
Posted by: Parabellum || 05/04/2011 8:18 Comments || Top||

#8  Cry me a river, indeed.

Further comment not fit for printing.
Posted by: Boss Ulavith1461 || 05/04/2011 8:25 Comments || Top||

#9  Tune in A&E on Thursdays for 'First 48' and watch a lot of kids who see their parents shot. Theirs usually were not a mastermind in the killing of 3,000 human beings just going about their daily routine.
Posted by: Procopius2k || 05/04/2011 8:59 Comments || Top||

#10  To put this in perspective:

9/11 was an attack on the scale of Pearl Harbour. Even the MSM saw it this way, see this at 1:01 for example.

Breaking with historical precedent, the response was not a war on Afghanistan. There was no devastating conventional strategic retaliation against the Afghan nation and the Afghan people.

Instead there was a very restrained military response that ousted the non-moderate Taliban from power (Powell wanted the moderates to join.)

Western military is in Afghanistan to "serve the people", Afghanistan has received billions in aid courtesy of western taxpayers, same for Pakistan.

Putting a bullet in OBL's head is an act of retaliation that is as precise as theoretically possible. There was no collateral damage. Even immediate neighbors were unharmed.

And now I am supposed to give a sh*t because a bint (who never should have been born in the first place(*)) got her precious little feelings hurt? Am I supposed to condemn the Navy Seals who took out the guilty and risked their lives to protect innocents, including Pakistanis who happened to be OBL's neighbors?

"The (9/11) dead included 8 children: 5 on American 77 ranging in age from 3 to 11, 3 on United 175 ages 2, 3, and 4.[19] The youngest victim was a 2 year-old child on Flight 175,"

These children are never going to be "12 or 13 years old". They will never experience Western mercy that will risk the lives of Western military in order to spare the innocent.

9/11 was filthy treachery, a filthy betrayal of Western hospitality, Western tolerance and Western generosity. If anything Osama bin Laden and his ilk and ,yes , Islam in general got off far too lightly.

(*) In a just world OBL would have been killed during the 90's well before he could have fathered her.

/rant
Posted by: Punky Thrusoque1295 || 05/04/2011 9:09 Comments || Top||

#11  Poor kid - but yes, what grom and TW said.

Pakistani authorities now believe that bin Laden had been living in the Abbottabad compound for "some months".

Like 60 or 70?
Posted by: RandomJD || 05/04/2011 9:55 Comments || Top||

#12  Is incest unIslamic?
By the time Osama bin Laden was killed, he was down to only one of his five wives: Amal Ahmed Abdul Fatah, the youngest(29) and his rumored favorite. By the time he moved into his Pakistan mansion, Bin Laden had divorced one of his wives and three others had moved to Syria, according to ABC News, but Amal had remained with him. She had been given to him as a gift when she was still a teenager, and eventually had three children with bin Laden—a daughter (13) and two sons, who lived with them in the compound. On the night of the raid, Amal was in the bedroom with Bin Laden, and apparently reacted with fury to the Navy SEALs who had come to kill her husband. "She rushed one of the U.S. assaulters and was shot in the leg, but not killed,"
Posted by: Lumpy Elmoluck5091 || 05/04/2011 10:38 Comments || Top||

#13  Are we sure its his daughter?
12 or 13 is old enough to be one of his wifes!
Posted by: Black Bart Phuling7750 || 05/04/2011 11:45 Comments || Top||

#14  "The daughter has reportedly told her Pakistani investigators that the US forces captured her father alive but shot him dead in front of family members."

If true, this could make things very ugly for our guys - at leasts sounds like murder. (Not that I mind, but ... it would complicate things.)
Posted by: Glenmore || 05/04/2011 12:55 Comments || Top||

#15  The official said that based on interviews with the daughter and others in the house, Pakistani authorities now believe that bin Laden had been living in the Abbottabad compound for "some months".

Five bucks sez the neighbors' stories about the house go back more than a few months.

"The daughter has reportedly told her Pakistani investigators that the US forces captured her father alive but shot him dead in front of family members."

Someone ought to remind UBL's "daughter" that

1) UBL said himself he wouldn't go down without a fight and would not be captured alive, and

2) We have gun cam footage of the event.
Posted by: gorb || 05/04/2011 13:02 Comments || Top||

#16  In all likelihood the Bin Laden group had prepared such a story in case of an American attack that would kill some but not all of them.

Wasn't there an AQ training manual that gave explicit instructions on how to plausibly claim torture and abuse in captivity?

If this should get the Seals into trouble maybe next time an ARCLIGHT airstrike is the better solution. Rubble does not make trouble, but surviving Bin Ladens might.
Posted by: Punky Thrusoque1295 || 05/04/2011 13:25 Comments || Top||

#17  Is it bad that this came to mind?

What a shame.

Posted by: Anon4021 || 05/04/2011 16:01 Comments || Top||

#18  TFB. F with the bull and you get the horns. Hope she learned that well watching the her daddy's brain splatter the wall out of the back of his head.
Posted by: The Other Beldar || 05/04/2011 17:42 Comments || Top||


-Short Attention Span Theater-
Students Guessed bin Laden's Hideaway?
Radio said the students put him in Abbot-town, but the original article is not so generous -
Could Osama bin Laden have been found faster if the CIA had followed the advice of ecosystem geographers from the University of California, Los Angeles? Probably not, but the predictions of UCLA geographer Thomas Gillespie, who, along with colleague John Agnew and a class of undergraduates, authored a 2009 paper predicting the terrorist's whereabouts, were none too shabby. According to a probabilistic model they created, there was an 88.9% chance that bin Laden was hiding out in a city less than 300 km from his last known location in Tora Bora: a region that included Abbottabad, Pakistan, where he was killed last night.
A 300 km radius takes in about 70 million acres, or over 100,000 square miles. Not all that impressive abulls-eye. But maybe the radio editor saw an earlier version -
*This item has been corrected. The figure initially reported was incorrect; the model predicted a 88.9% probability given the distance. Also, the model only predicts the probability of his being within a geographic radius of his last known location, not a specific city. The article has been corrected to reflect this fact.
Expect some in the media (that don't do careful fact checking) to get this wrong. They would've, to embarass other Presidents - like - "Students Knew - Why Not Bush?"
Posted by: Bobby || 05/04/2011 06:11 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [399 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Wehell now, IIRC no less an Expert than HOMER
"DONUTS - IS THERE ANYTHING IT CAN'T DO?" SIMPSON said that nothing is, nor ever shall be, 100% accurate.
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 05/04/2011 20:45 Comments || Top||


Africa North
LIBYA: REBELS WANT 3 BILLION DOLLAR LOAN
h/t Gates of Vienna
Libyan rebels have today warned that their economy could collapse in the next few months if France, Italy and the United States do not provide loans worth three billion dollars guaranteed by the frozen funds of the Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi.

"The liquidity we have in the country will probably be enough for three months, four at most," said Ali Tarhouni, the economy and oil "minister" for the National Transitional Council (NTC), the political organ of the rebels controlling the east of the country.
The man was a professor of economics until recently, so possibly he knows what he's talking about. There is a question of establishing an economy capable of generating the income to pay back the loan...
Posted by: gr(o)mgoru || 05/04/2011 07:30 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [278 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Would such a loan be any riskier than one to the US?
Posted by: Glenmore || 05/04/2011 8:02 Comments || Top||

#2  John Adams to the white courtesy phone.
Posted by: Procopius2k || 05/04/2011 9:00 Comments || Top||

#3  How 'bout we have an international military force sit on the oil wells in the east around Benghazi? You know, for collateral.
Posted by: Steve White || 05/04/2011 9:11 Comments || Top||

#4  It's a liquidity problem. Cash will be draining out of rebel areas and they have no way to replace it.
Posted by: phil_b || 05/04/2011 10:18 Comments || Top||

#5  Oh, so the rebels are running out of cash.
Boo, Hoo.
Posted by: Redneck Jim || 05/04/2011 11:21 Comments || Top||

#6  The man was a professor of economics until recently, so possibly he knows what he's talking about.

Tell me you were being facetious, TW
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 05/04/2011 14:34 Comments || Top||

#7  Probability between zero and one, g(r)omgoru. Beyond that...I am not a financial whiz kid. On the other hand, it doesn't take a PhD to ask for money from them who got some.
Posted by: trailing wife || 05/04/2011 14:53 Comments || Top||

#8  Confederate currency will do nicely.
____________________________________
borgboyjeffdavis
Posted by: borgboy || 05/04/2011 16:44 Comments || Top||


Arabia
EU warns Bahrain against executions
[Iran Press TV] EU foreign policy chief, Catherine Ashton, has expressed deep concern over the imminent executions of four anti-government protesters in Bahrain.

"These death sentences risk further exacerbating recent tensions in Bahrain and as such, present an obstacle to national reconciliation," she said in a statement on Tuesday.

On April 28, a military court sentenced four Bahrainis to death for the alleged killing of two coppers during anti-government protests in March.

"Reconciliation requires dialogue to be started without delay and without preconditions, enabling real reforms which are the only viable solution to successfully addressing the challenges the country is facing," Ashton was quoted as saying by AFP.

She also noted that though the charges were "serious," the fact that civilians were tried before a military court behind closed doors was "a further cause for concern."

"In accordance with international human rights
...which are usually entirely different from personal liberty...
conventions that Bahrain has signed up to, every person has the right to a fair trial including the right of effective appeal," the statement read.

"Anyone sentenced to death has the right to seek pardon or commutation of the sentence, which may be granted in all cases," the EU official concluded.

People in Bahrain have been protesting since February 14, demanding an end to the rule of the Al Khalifa dynasty.

Demonstrators maintain that they will hold their ground until their demands for freedom, constitutional monarchy as well as a proportional voice in the government are met.
Posted by: Fred || 05/04/2011 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [277 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Or we send you a very stiff note!
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 05/04/2011 3:09 Comments || Top||


Bangladesh
NSI, Ulfa links concealed
[Bangla Daily Star] The involvement of the NSI officials and Indian separatist group Ulfa in smuggling of 10 truckload of arms was not mentioned in the arms haul case probe report due to an active role played by the then DGFI director Brig Gen Rezzakul Haider Chowdhury.

The former chief of DGFI, Chittagong Col (retd) AKM Rezaur Rahman said this as witness in a statement given before the court of Metropolitan Magistrate Mohammad Mahbubur Rahman yesterday.

Terming Rezzakul a 'very dominating', 'influential' and 'sharp' person, Rezaur stated, "I came to know from different sources that the issue of involvement of the NSI officials and Indian separatist group Ulfa in smuggling of the arms was suppressed in the probe report due to crucial role played by Rezzakul.", said a source at the court quoting Rezaur's statement.

He also stated that Rezzakul had very good link with former state minister Lutfozzaman Babar and he was so influential for his political connection.

The court recorded Rezaur's 13-page statement in three hours started at 3:15pm in connection with country's largest ever arms haul in Chittagong on April 2, 2004.
Posted by: Fred || 05/04/2011 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [253 views] Top|| File under:


Caribbean-Latin America
Chihuahua state Bans "Narcomusic"
The Chihuahua state legislature has passed a law that ban certain types of music within Chihuahua state, according to Mexican news accounts.

Led by state deputy Raul Garcia Ruiz, head of the Chihuahua state Chamber of Deputies Comision de Gobernación, the law bans promotion of musicians in Chihuahua radio stations that glorify drug lords as heroes of the people. The new law also forbid state funds to hire such groups to public events.

The law was originally introduced by state deputy Ricardo Boone who is the manager of Grupo Radiorama in Chihuahua, which is apparently a subsidiary of the largest Mexican radio station group Grupo Radiorama.

Grupo Radiorama has ties with Televisa, an electronic entertainment giant that has strong ties with Mexican President Felipe Calderon Hinojosa.

When the law is signed by Chihuahua governor Cesar Duarte, bands such as Tucanes de Tijuana, Buitres de Culiacan and Movimiento Alterado would be banned from airtime on Chihuahua radio stations, nor could they be hired in the state using public funds for events such as fairs. These and other music groups are immensely popular in Chihuahua and Sinaloa states, where drug violence is often the worst.
Posted by: badanov || 05/04/2011 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [339 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Mexican Gansta Rap. I never realized, though it should be no surprise.
Posted by: Glenmore || 05/04/2011 7:22 Comments || Top||

#2  Closer to Gansta Polka, but you have the right idea.
Posted by: Zebulon Thranter9685 || 05/04/2011 14:19 Comments || Top||

#3  ...polka but with tequila.
Posted by: Procopius2k || 05/04/2011 20:57 Comments || Top||


China-Japan-Koreas
Evidence Points to N.Korea in Hacker Attack on Bank
A computer network breakdown on April 12 in agricultural cooperative lender Nonghyup was the result of a cyber attack North Korea's General Bureau of Reconnaissance prepared meticulously for more than seven months, a spokesman for the Seoul Central District Prosecutors' Office said Tuesday.

A North Korean source said the bureau's department in charge of technological affairs probably carried out the attack. It reportedly has about 1,000 hackers under its control.

According to prosecutors, North Korean hackers planted a virus in a laptop owned by an IBM Korea employee identified as Han last September. After finding out that Han was in charge of the bank's computer network maintenance at subcontractor IBM Korea, the hackers stole Internet Protocol addresses to break into the bank network. They activated the virus and paralyzed the bank servers on April 12, three days before North Korean founder Kim Il-sung's birthday.
"Happy birthday to you, Dear Leader, have some money!"
The National Intelligence Service identified 201 port numbers which became zombie computers after hacker attacks last September, and found that one of them matched Han's laptop, the prosecutors' office said.

"We have more decisive clues pointing to the North but can't disclose them now because that would make it more difficult to deal with future cyber attacks from the North," a prosecutor said.

Security officials note that North Korean leader Kim Jong-il secretly visited the Workers Party's Building No. 3 in March, where the General Bureau of Reconnaissance and other agencies engaged in anti-South operations are clustered.

Kim has a habit of visiting agencies engaged in anti-South Korean operations before launching provocations against the South. On Nov. 27, 2009, he visited the West Sea Fleet Command in Nampo, and the North sank the Cheonan four months later.

According to a tract published by the North Korean Army in 2005, Kim said, "Modern war is electronic warfare. Victory or defeat in a modern war depends on how to carry out electronic warfare."
Posted by: Steve White || 05/04/2011 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [248 views] Top|| File under:


Europe
Spiegel:Justice, American Style Was Bin Laden's Killing Legal?
US President Barack Obama gets precious few opportunities to announce a victory. So it's no wonder he chose grand words on Sunday night as the TV crews' spotlights shone upon him and he informed the nation about the deadly strike against Osama bin Laden. "Justice has been done," he said.

It may be that this sentence comes back to haunt him in the years to come. International law experts, who have been grappling with the question of the legal status of the US-led war on terror for years, find Obama's pithy words on Sunday night more problematic.

Claus Kress, an international law professor at the University of Cologne, argues that achieving retributive justice for crimes, difficult as that may be, is "not achieved through summary executions, but through a punishment that is meted out at the end of a trial."
Bambi has lost the EUropeans. I thought he was going to make us loved respected by our betters again. Now he's nothing more than another gunslinger.
Posted by: Nimble Spemble || 05/04/2011 08:33 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [378 views] Top|| File under:

#1  We don't need no stinkin' badges!"
Posted by: JohnQC || 05/04/2011 9:36 Comments || Top||

#2  There's no moral superiority like German moral superiority.
Posted by: charger || 05/04/2011 12:12 Comments || Top||

#3  But if bin Laden was no longer a leader, it would no longer be permissible to treat him as an enemy combatant or kill him.

Well sport...right there's the monkey in yer wrench. Ya see, it's perfectly legal to extinguish "enemy combatants". And well...Binny was...yes indeed...designated as an enemy combatant. Pretty sure your tortured logic wouldn't erase that fact. Next time you might wanna try leaving out the unprovable hypotheticals in your legal arguments. But nice try anyway.
Posted by: DepotGuy || 05/04/2011 12:41 Comments || Top||

#4  There's a serious disconnect between published opinion and what the public actually thinks in Germany.
Posted by: European Conservative || 05/04/2011 21:25 Comments || Top||

#5  But for the sake of humanity: Next time you go after a terrorist, take a German law professor with you who can tell the terrorist to surrender peacefully.

Win Win
Posted by: European Conservative || 05/04/2011 21:35 Comments || Top||

#6  "Next time you go after a terrorist, take a German law professor with you who can tell the terrorist to surrender peacefully. Win Win."

Particularly if you make sure the prof's in front, EC :-D
Posted by: Barbara Skolaut || 05/04/2011 23:36 Comments || Top||


Home Front: Politix
Obama owes thanks, and an apology, to CIA interrogators
Posted by: GolfBravoUSMC || 05/04/2011 16:30 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [275 views] Top|| File under:


India-Pakistan
Pakistan criticises US raid on Laden
[Bangla Daily Star] Pakistain criticised the American raid that killed the late Osama bin Laden
... who no longer exists...
as an "unauthorised unilateral action," laying bare the strains the operation has put on an already rocky alliance.

US politicians along with the leaders of Perfidious Albion and La Belle France questioned how the Pak government could not have known the al-Qaeda leader was living in a garrison town less than a two-hour drive from the capital and had apparently lived there for years.

"I find it hard to believe that the presence of a person or individual such as bin Laden in a large compound in a relatively small town ... could go completely unnoticed," French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe told news hounds in Gay Paree.

British Prime Minister David Cameron
... has stated that he is certainly a big Thatcher fan, but I don't know whether that makes me a Thatcherite, which means he's not. Since he is not deeply ideological he lacks core principles and is easily led. He has been described as certainly not a Pitt, Elder or Younger, but he does wear a nice suit so maybe he's Beau Brummel ...
also demanded that Pak leaders explain how bin Laden had lived undetected in Abbottabad. But in a nod to the complexities of dealing with a nuclear-armed, unstable country that is crucial to success in the war in Afghanistan, Cameron said having "a massive row" with Islamabad over the issue would not be in Perfidious Albion's interest.

White House front man Jay Carney told news hounds Tuesday that the US is committed to cooperating with Pakistain.

"We don't know who if anybody in the government was aware that bin Laden or a high-value target was living in the compound. It's logical to assume he had a supporting network. What constituted that network remains to be seen," Carney said.

"It's a big country and a big government and we have to be very focused and careful about how we do this because it is an important relationship."

A day after US commandos killed the al-Qaeda leader following a 10-year manhunt, new details emerged Tuesday from Pakistain's powerful intelligence agency and bin Laden's neighbours in Abbottabad.

Residents said they sensed something was odd about the walled three-story house, even though bin Laden and his family rarely ventured outside and most neighbours were not aware that foreigners were living there.

"That house was obviously a suspicious one," said Jahangir Khan, who was buying a newspaper in Abbottabad. "Either it was a complete failure of our intelligence agencies or they were involved in this affair."

Neighbours said two men would routinely emerge from the compound to run errands or occasionally attend a neighbourhood gathering, such as a funeral. Both men were tall, fair skinned and bearded.

"People were skeptical in this neighbourhood about this place and these guys," said Mashood Khan, a 45-year-old farmer. "They used to gossip, say they were smugglers or drug pushers. People would complain that even with such a big house they didn't invite the poor or distribute charity."

US officials have suggested Pak officials may have known where bin Laden was living and members of Congress have seized on those suspicions to call for the US to consider cutting billions of aid to Pakistain if it turns out to be true.

Western officials have long regarded Pak security forces with suspicion, especially when it comes to links with faceless myrmidons fighting in Afghanistan. Last year, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton
... sometimes described as the Smartest Woman in the World and at other times as Mrs. Bill, never as Another John Jay ...
publicly said she suspected that some members of Pakistain's government knew where bin Laden was hiding.

However,
The didactic However...
within Pakistain criticism has been focused on the US breaching the country's illusory sovereignty. The B.O. regime has said it did not inform the Paks in advance of the operation against bin Laden, for fear they would tip off the targets.

A strongly worded Pak government statement warned the US not to launch similar operations in the future. It rejected suggestions that officials knew where bin Laden was.

Still, there were other revelations that pointed to prior knowledge that the compound was linked to al-Qaeda.

Pak intelligence agencies hunting for a top al-Qaeda operative raided the house in 2003, according to a senior officer, speaking on condition of anonymity
... for fear of being murdered...
in line with the spy agency's policy.

The house was just being built at the time of the raid by Pakistain's Inter-Services Intelligence agency, and Abu Faraj al-Libi, al-Qaeda's No 3, was not there, said the officer.

US officials have said al-Libi once lived in the house and that information from him played a role in tracking the al-Qaeda chief down. Al-Libi was incarcerated by Pak police after a shootout in 2005 and he was later handed over to US authorities.

The Pak officer said he didn't know why bin Laden would choose a house that already had been compromised.

He also insisted the ISI would have captured bin Laden if it had known he was there, and pushed back at international criticism of the agency.

"Look at our track record given the issues we have faced, the lack of funds. We have killed or captured hundreds" of beturbanned goons), said the officer. "All of a sudden one failure makes us incompetent and 10 years of effort is overlooked."

Al-Qaeda has been responsible for score of bloody attacks inside Pakistain, so on the face of it would seem strange for Islamabad to be sheltering bin Laden. Critics of Pakistain say that by keeping him on the run, Islamabad was ensuring that US aid and weapons to the country kept flowing.

The Pak government said that since 2009 the ISI has shared information about the compound with the CIA and other Western intelligence agencies, and that intelligence indicating foreigners were in the Abbottabad area continued until mid-April.

In an essay published Tuesday by The Washington Post, Pak President Asif Ali President Ten Percent Zardari
... sticky-fingered husband of the late Benazir Bhutto ...
denied suggestions his country's security forces may have sheltered bin Laden, and said their cooperation with the United States helped pinpoint him.

The raid followed months of deteriorating relations between the CIA and Pakistain's intelligence service. Those strains came to a head in late January after a CIA contractor shot and killed two Paks in what Washington said was self-defense.

In a statement, the Pak government said "this event of unauthorised unilateral action cannot be taken as a rule."

"The government of Pakistain further affirms that such an event shall not serve as a future precedent for any state, including the US," it said, calling such actions a "threat to international peace and security."

The statement may be partly motivated by domestic concerns. The government and army has come under criticism following the raid by those who have accused the government of allowing Washington to violate the country's illusory sovereignty. Islamabad has also been angered at the suspicions it had been sheltering bin Laden.
Posted by: Fred || 05/04/2011 11:09 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [342 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Pakistan

#1  Whom the Gods wish to destroy...
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 05/04/2011 15:02 Comments || Top||

#2  PAKISTAN allegedly alerted Pak Air Force fighters + nearby Pak Army units, albeit too late, to rush over to the house of an Osama they proclaim didn't know he was there at Abbottabad, a Pak military region.

And then there's ...

* MSM-NET ARTICS > ALLEGED "JOINT US-PAK OPERATION" [Cooperation?] AGZ OSAMA > Taken collectively, most likely means any assigned Pak Army-Police Security including RADAR = SIGINT, ETC. at Osama's house or locale per se were weirdly-n-mysteriously ordered, but only coincidentally pdeniably, to "stand down" + "disappear" or otherwise NOT physically interfere wid the US raid???

Just sayin'.
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 05/04/2011 21:06 Comments || Top||


Congress may dock Pakistan aid over bin Laden
Congress may consider cutting the almost $1.3 billion in annual aid to Pakistan if it turns out the Islamabad government knew where Osama bin Laden was hiding, the head of the Senate Intelligence Committee said Tuesday.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., said she wants more details from CIA director Leon Panetta and others about the Pakistani government's role. Feinstein spoke to reporters about the raid that killed bin Laden early Monday and the questions raised by his hiding place deep inside Pakistan.

The No. 2 House Democratic leader, Rep. Steny Hoyer of Maryland, said if Pakistan doesn't ease doubts about its dedication to fighting terrorists, Congress should explore whether it makes sense to reduce U.S. aid to that country.
Posted by: Zebulon Thranter9685 || 05/04/2011 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [372 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Go for it. Do something to actually earn your money for once.
Posted by: Barbara Skolaut || 05/04/2011 16:21 Comments || Top||

#2  "Almost US$1.3Bilyuhn in annual aid to Pakistan" > Yokay, I'll bite, I'm pretty sure the CNN AM Reporter Babe said Pakland was getting OVER TWICE THAT AMOUNT PER ANNUM.
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 05/04/2011 20:29 Comments || Top||

#3  JosephM, no doubt the rest of the money is directly related to specific projects, not general funds.
Posted by: trailing wife || 05/04/2011 22:37 Comments || Top||

#4  ..and here I thought in Pakistan it was all the Generals' funds. ;)
Posted by: Procopius2k || 05/04/2011 23:59 Comments || Top||


Feinstein: reduce Pakistan aid over bin Laden
Dang, even Feinstein's getting into the act. Wonder if Boxer will want the Paks to address her properly?
WASHINGTON — Congress may consider reducing the almost $1.3 billion dollars in annual US aid to Pakistan if it turns out the Islamabad government knew where Osama bin Laden was hiding, the head of the Senate Intelligence committee says.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein, a Democrat, said Tuesday she wants more details from CIA director Leon Panetta and others about the Pakistani government’s role. Feinstein spoke to reporters about the raid that killed bin Laden early Monday and the questions raised by his hiding place deep inside Pakistan.
Posted by: Steve White || 05/04/2011 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [302 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Feinstein obviously does not read Rantburg, or she would know about the associations between terrorists and the ISI years ago. Her OODA loop is as fast as a hamster's treadmill in molasses.
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 05/04/2011 0:49 Comments || Top||

#2  Better late than never.
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 05/04/2011 3:07 Comments || Top||

#3  Feinstein reads Rantburg now?
Posted by: Perfesser || 05/04/2011 4:38 Comments || Top||

#4  Sen. Dianne Feinstein, a Democrat, said Tuesday she wants more details from CIA director Leon Panetta and others about the Pakistani government’s role.

Senator Feinstein reportedly came very close to disclosing the operation before it was officially released and after she had been briefed.
Posted by: Pappy || 05/04/2011 15:18 Comments || Top||


France says Pakistan position on bin Laden lacks clarity
[Dawn] The fact that the late Osama bin Laden
... Maybe his Mom misses him...
went completely unnoticed before he was killed shows that Pakistain's position on the al Qaeda leader has lacked clarity, French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe said Tuesday.

"I find it a little difficult to imagine that the presence of someone like bin Laden in a big compound in a relatively small town could go completely unnoticed," Juppe said.

"This is something we're asking ourselves."

"Pakistain's position lacks clarity in our view, I hope that we will have more clarity," he added.
Posted by: Fred || 05/04/2011 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [265 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Pakistan


JUI-F lawmaker terms Osama hero of Muslims
The news of killing of the late Osama bin Laden
... who has won the race to that place where we all eventually end up...
overshadowed the proceedings of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa
... formerly NWFP, still Terrorism Central...
Assembly on Monday when a politician of Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Fazl
That would be Maulana Fazal-ur-Rehman's part of the Deobandi Assembly of Islamic Clergy party, the other part (JUI-S) belonging to Maulana Sami ul Haq. They've established thousands of madrassahs over the decades, and are supposed to be connected to the Taliban.
termed him a hero of Mohammedans, prompting a cabinet member to call him a symbol of terror.

On a point of order, Mufti Kifayetullah of JUI-F said that Osama was a hero for Mohammedans and a great jihadi leader, who sacrificed his life for the glory of Islam. He said that America in collaboration with the army killed Osama in a fake encounter in Abbottabad.
Crossfire!! Except that there were no bullets behind the ear.
The holy man from Mansehra paid rich tribute to bin Laden in his fiery speech in the house and blamed military for his liquidation. "It is a matter of shame for army and government that foreign forces invaded the country and killed our hero," he remarked, adding that Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa government was equally responsible for this action.

"This is a fact that Americans killed bin Laden
"He's dead, Jim."
but they could not eliminate his ideology," he maintained. He said that it was the darkest day in the history of Pakistain.

Awami National Party parliamentary leader Bashir Ahmad Bilour, who also holds the portfolio of senior minister, while giving a tit-for-tat reply to the Mufti termed bin Laden a symbol of terror. He said that the killer of thousands of innocent people had
reached his logical end.

"Thank God, we have been rid of this man," said Mr Bilour amid loud thumping of desks by the treasury members.

He said that Osama bin Laden was not only responsible for killing of 10,000 innocent people but also killed over 3,000
soldiers. Osama and his supporters had destroyed schools, hospitals and killed their brothers and sisters therefore he did not deserve sympathies, he said.

"He (Osama) was providing suicide jackets, guns and explosives to our children in Swat
...a valley and an administrative district in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province of Pakistain, located 99 mi from Islamabad. It is inhabited mostly by Pashto speakers. The place has gone steadily downhill since the days when Babe Ruth was the Sultan of Swat...
and other parts of the country. His people have killed 400 workers and politicians of ANP," he added.

"Let them (Al Qaeda gunnies) fight in Middle East and other parts of the world instead of killing innocent people in blasts. If Osama was a true Mohammedan then he should have launched jihad in his own territory," he said, adding that before the fall of Taliban government about 500 Learned Elders of Islam had asked Osama to leave Afghanistan.

Speaker Karamatullah Khan Chagharmati, who was presiding over the proceedings, did not allow Qalandar Khan Lodhi, the parliamentary leader of PML-Q, to express his views on the US forces operation in Abbottabad.

Mr Lodhi told Dawn that news about presence of bin Laden in Abbottabad shocked him and he did not believe that he was residing in such a peaceful and sensitive area. "This is failure of our security agencies that a high value target took shelter near the prestigious military academy," he said.

Although security alert was declared in Beautiful Downtown Peshawar after the news of bin Laden's killing spread, people thronged bazaars and shopping malls. Offices and schools in the provincial metropolis remained open. Security was on alert as usual.

However,
The contradictory However...
people seemed reserved to express their feelings on the killing of the Al Qaeda leader, who stayed in the scenic provincial capital along with his fighters for several years during the Afghan war. Many native of Peshawar did not believe the news about the killing of bin Laden.

Mohammad Sajjad, a shopkeeper in Saddar Bazaar, said that he did not believe in the death of bin Laden. "Americans always tell lies. They have declared Osama dead many times before and I can't trust," he remarked.
Posted by: Fred || 05/04/2011 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [316 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Pakistan

#1  Maybe Mufti Kifayetullah would like to be a hero like Binny.
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 05/04/2011 0:51 Comments || Top||

#2  "This is a fact that Americans killed bin Laden but they could not eliminate his ideology,"

At some level, one's "ideology" should perhaps include personal survival.
Posted by: Besoeker || 05/04/2011 2:50 Comments || Top||

#3  IMO: Islam needs, a lot, more heroes like this.
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 05/04/2011 3:14 Comments || Top||

#4  I'm sorry but I keep getting confused between the names Osama and Obama. There's only one letter difference and my eyesight isn't what it used to be.
Posted by: JohnQC || 05/04/2011 14:01 Comments || Top||


Quiet embarrassment in Pakistan after killing of bin Laden
There were no protests and no extra security in Pakistain on Tuesday, a day after the killing of the late Osama bin Laden
... who is currently rooming with Hitler and Himmler...
by US forces, just a sense of embarrassment and indifference that the al Qaeda leader had managed to lie low for years in a Pakistain garrison town.

Bin Laden was rubbed out early on Monday morning by US commandos who dropped by helicopter into the compound where he had lived since 2005.

It had long been thought that he was hiding in Pakistain's lawless tribal belt in the northwest near the border with Afghanistan, so it came as a huge surprise to many that he had been holed up in a town less than two hours' drive from Islamabad and just a stone's throw from a military academy.

President Asif Ali President Ten Percent Zardari
... sticky-fingered husband of the late Benazir Bhutto ...
, writing in the Washington Post, said Pakistain's security forces were left out of the raid on the hideout in the town of Abbottabad and insisted that the authorities had thought he was somewhere else.

However,
The didactic However...
Zardari has made no address to the people of a country where anti-American sentiment runs high, prompting one Twitter user to tweet "Most wanted man is killed on Pak soil and the Pres doesn't address his people, instead writes an op-ed for USA."

Army and spy agency silent

There were some very small demonstrations by hardline groups after the killing of bin Laden, but it was business as usual in the capital on Tuesday, with no signs of increased security.

In Pakistain's largest city of Bloody Karachi, however, a protest was expected later against "increasing US involvement" in Pakistain.

Still, many ordinary Paks said bin Laden's killing was of no consequence to them. "It doesn't make any difference to my life whether he is killed or not," said Zain Khan, a labourer in the northwestern city of Beautiful Downtown Peshawar.

While Islamabad's alliance with Washington is unpopular, especially following a campaign of US drone strikes on beturbanned goon targets in the border areas, many people are also tired of the suicide kabooms that have racked the country for years.

"He (bin Laden) did not have much popularity today because people have been killed in violence linked to al Qaeda," commentator Ejaz Haider said.

The immediate reaction was muted because Paks didn't identify with the ideology of al Qaeda, the former head of Pakistain's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) Lieutenant-General Hamid Gul
The nutty former head of Pakistain's ISI, now Godfather to Mullah Omar's Talibs and good buddy and consultant to al-Qaeda's high command...
said.

But there was anger building up over the violation of Pakistain's illusory sovereignty by US forces who carried out the raid.

"That's an affront to a nation of 180 million people," Gul told Rooters. "The people of Pakistain are very angry with their military that they have sold us" to the Americans.

Both the army and the ISI spy agency were conspicuously silent on the raid, which has raised suspicions they knew all along where bin Laden was hiding.

"Many of us didn't believe in the image of bin Laden as a wandering Old Man of the Mountains, living on plants and insects in an inhospitable cave somewhere on the porous Pakistain-Afghan border," wrote author Salman Rushdie in a piece for The Daily Beast.

"An extremely big man, 6-foot 4-inches tall in a country where the average male height is around 5-foot 8, wandering around unnoticed for ten years while half the satellites above the earth were looking for him?"

He said Pakistain faced tough questions and "if it does not provide those answers, perhaps time has come to declare it a terrorist state and expel it from the comity of nations."

"Picking and choosing beturbanned goons"

Washington has in the past accused Pakistain of lacking the resolve to root out bully boyz and of maintaining ties to fighters targeting US troops in neighbouring Afghanistan.

In October 2009, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton
... sometimes described as the Smartest Woman in the World and at other times as Mrs. Bill, never as Another Tallyrand ...
voiced dismay that bin Laden and other prominent bully boyz had not yet been caught and suggested Pak complicity.

Within hours of the operation that killed bin Laden, US politicians were asking how he had been able to live in a populated area of Pakistain without anyone in authority knowing about it. Some said it was time to review the billions in aid the United States provides Pakistain.

Pak newspapers reflected those concerns, warning that the nation may come under renewed pressure.

"Pakistain has found itself in quite the embarrassing situation ... Whilst we have been allies of the US, we have been very trying partners, picking and choosing the bully boyz we wanted to root out and the ones we wanted to protect," the Daily Times said.

"It is hoped we will not be on the receiving end of a negative fallout with the Americans, who are in this war for (the) long haul."

But Zardari said in his article in the Washington Post that Pakistain was as much a victim of al Qaeda bully boyz as any country and denied any notion that the authorities had failed to act.
Posted by: Fred || 05/04/2011 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [311 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Pakistan

#1  It had long been thought that he was hiding in Pakistain's lawless tribal belt

Except, apparently, by some UCLA Geography class two years ago, who picked Abbottobad at 90% certainty. (Might want to check the c.v. on that prof.)

"Pakistain has found itself in quite the embarrassing situation "

Which one? That Osama was hiding in your living room and you didn't notice? Or, alternatively, that you were hiding the world's most wanted criminal in your living room? Your national sovereignty was violated and you allowed it? Or that you never even noticed until it was over? If the latter, it must be tough being a Pak Air Force officer trying to explain how it would be different if it was an Indian attack - you know, the ones they've been spending billions to defend against.
Posted by: Glenmore || 05/04/2011 7:53 Comments || Top||

#2  Next target should be Gul
Posted by: Water Modem || 05/04/2011 11:59 Comments || Top||

#3  I feel a little embarrassed as well.

I thought for sure OBL was in Rawalpindi.

Shows what I know.

And I agree with WM above--Gul needs to move up on the target list.
Posted by: charger || 05/04/2011 12:18 Comments || Top||

#4  Next target should be Gul I suspect there will be many located & targeted over the next few months due to Binny's treasure trove of incriminating evidence.
Posted by: Anguper Hupomosing9418 || 05/04/2011 13:18 Comments || Top||

#5  Jerry Pournelle had this to say: The PAK ISI is a leaky organization. At some point in this operation the US had to bring in the Pakistani government. The surviving helicopter needed refueling. They had just shot up a compound in a peaceful and orderly neighborhood, they had a body aboard, and they had to get back to the ship. Just who called who to do what isn't clear, but it is a fair inference that the Pakistani military had orders to lay off. Exactly when they got those orders, and who arranged them, hasn't come out and never will.

Note that this raid was months in the planning, and yet there were no leaks getting back to Osama bin Laden. That is at best puzzling.
Posted by: Anguper Hupomosing9418 || 05/04/2011 13:20 Comments || Top||

#6  Note that this raid was months in the planning, and yet there were no leaks getting back to Osama bin Laden. That is at best puzzling. Posted by Anguper Hupomosing9418

Two things make this old ball rotate, and the other one is MONEY. Perhaps someday we'll know just how much money it took to buy silence. As far as the helo's go, they could have been... I say possibly could have been air-refuel capable.
Posted by: Besoeker || 05/04/2011 13:27 Comments || Top||

#7  The bulk of the evidence so far obtained points to two things which don't jibe well. (1) A big chunk of the Pak gov't and ISI knew perfectly well where OBL was staying all these years & they supported him fully. (2) A key chunk of the Pak gov't and ISI pulled strings in the right places, at the right times, to allow OBL to be cornered and shot without interference, and with plausible deniability for part (2). There is no plausible deniability for (1).
We'll see who in the Pak system gets terminated with extreme prejudice. Probably be people in both (1) and (2).
Posted by: Anguper Hupomosing9418 || 05/04/2011 13:40 Comments || Top||


Osama's killing may cut drone attacks
[Dawn] The rustics have showed mixed reaction to the news about killing of Al Qaeda leader the late Osama bin Laden
... who is no longer with us, and won't be again...
during an operation in Abbottabad.

Former ambassador Ayaz Wazir described the killing of Osama as a big security failure of the country and criticised prime minister for declaring the killing as a success for Pakistain in a statement. "I don't understand what benefits Pakistain government can get from an operation, which was clandestinely carried out by US forces without taking it into confidence," he said.

He added that the incident would further mount pressure on Pakistain for initiating a military operation in North Wazoo where Americans believed some Al Qaeda elements were still hiding.

But Said Nazir, a retired brigadier from Mohmand
... Named for the Mohmand clan of the Sarban Pahstuns, a truculent, quarrelsome lot. In Pakistain, the Mohmands infest their eponymous Agency, metastasizing as far as the plains of Beautiful Downtown Peshawar, Charsadda, and Mardan. Mohmands are also scattered throughout Pakistan in urban areas including Bloody Karachi, Lahore, and Quetta. In Afghanistan they are mainly found in Nangarhar and Kunar...
Agency, believed that the killing of Osama bin Laden would decrease drone attacks in tribal areas as according to him the US forces succeeded in getting their prime target.
Don't count on it, bub. The Haqqani mob isn't dead yet...
"The killing of Osama in Abbottabad and that too near an army cantonment clearly negates the general impression that high profile Al Qaeda leaders are hiding in tribal areas," he said.
That's a leap of logic that kinda takes the mental breath away...
He added that prior to Osama's killing other top Al Qaeda operatives had been tossed in the calaboose from settled districts of the country.
... while others have been converted to spare parts or flying meat right there in North and South Wazoo...
Senator Hafiz Rashid Ahmad argued that the killing of Osama was timed by the B.O. regime to use it as a slogan in the 2012 elections.
Like Bush the First used stomping Iraq to win the '92 elections. How'd that work out?
Jamaat-i-Islami deputy general secretary for Fata Zar Noor Afridi termed it as an extra-judicial killing and insisted that it was a terrorist act by the US armed forces inside Pak territory.
Taking out Osama bin Laden=a terrorist act. My mind just boggled.
"The US has no right to carry out such terrorist activity inside Pakistain," he said, condemning the incident. He added that rustics would protest intervention of US forces. Former president of Fata Lawyers Forum Karim Mehsud said that the killing of Osama Bin Laden in Abbottabad was a clear manifestation of the fact there was no hideout of Al Qaeda in tribal areas.

Chief of Muttahida Qabail Party Habib Orakzai said that the US had no justification to remain in Afghanistan after the alleged killing of Osama bin Laden.
Posted by: Fred || 05/04/2011 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [276 views] Top|| File under: al-Qaeda in Pakistan

#1  Is the war over? Are there not AQ and Taliban in the north tribal areas, Waziristan, and Pakistan. Is Pakistan our ally? If the answer to any of these questions is NO, then why cut/stop the drone attacks? More please and faster.
Posted by: JohnQC || 05/04/2011 14:29 Comments || Top||

#2  Given that the SEALs confiscated a BUNCH of computers, hard drives, etc. with a LOT of very interesting stuff, I think the drone attacks have just begun.

In a way it's too bad we mentioned that they got the computers - the story should have been that they had to hurry to get OBL's body out of there and didn't get anything interesting. That way, the cockroaches wouldn't know that they need to scurry to their next not-so-safe-anymore house.
Posted by: Rambler in Virginia || 05/04/2011 18:33 Comments || Top||


US holds photos of slain bin Laden, weighs release
[Dawn] Still-secret photos of the dead the late Osama bin Laden
... who is currently taking a long nap in the dirt... urm... water...
show a precision kill shot above his left eye, a US official said, as fresh details emerged of an audacious American raid that netted potentially crucial al Qaeda records as well as the body of the global terrorist leader. President Barack B.O. Obama is going to ground zero in New York to mark the milestone and remember the dead of 9/11.

Patience and persistence -- characteristics normally attributed to al Qaeda -- proved decisive in America's decade-long hunt for bin Laden, whose fate was sealed in 40 minutes of thunderous violence, years in the making.

According to the US account, the assault team came away with hard drives, DVDs, documents and more that might tip US intelligence to al Qaeda's operational details and perhaps lead the manhunt to the presumed next-in-command, Ayman al-Zawahri. The CIA is already going over the material.

Obama, who approved the extraordinarily risky operation by Navy SEALs against bin Laden's Pakistain redoubt and witnessed its progression from the White House Situation Room, his face heavy with tension, reaped accolades from world leaders he'd kept in the dark as well as from political opponents at home.

Republican and Democratic leaders alike gave him a standing ovation at an evening White House meeting that was planned before the assault but became a celebration of it, and an occasion to step away from the fractious political climate. Obama plans to visit New York on Thursday.

"Last night's news unified our country," much as the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, did, Republican House Speaker John It is not pronounced 'Boner!' Boehner
... the occasionally weepy leader of House Republicans...
said earlier in the day. Obama later appealed for that unity to take root as the US presses the fight against a terrorist network that is still lethal -- and now vowing vengeance.

The episode was an embarrassment, at best, for Pak authorities as bin Laden's presence was revealed in their midst. The stealth US operation played out in a city with a strong Pak military presence and without notice from Washington. Questions persisted in the administration and grew in Congress about whether some elements of Pakistain's security apparatus might have been in collusion with al Qaeda in letting bin Laden hide in Abbottabad.

The administration weighed whether to release photos of bin Laden's corpse and video of his swift burial at sea. Officials were reluctant to inflame Islamic sentiment by showing graphic images of the body. But they were also eager to address the mythology already building in Pakistain and beyond that bin Laden was somehow still alive.

US officials say the photographic evidence shows bin Laden was shot above his left eye, blowing away part of his skull.

He was also shot in the chest, they said. This, near the end of a frenzied firefight in a high-walled Pak compound where helicopter-borne US forces found 23 children, nine women, a bin Laden courier who had unwittingly led the US to its target, a son of bin Laden who was also slain, and more.

Bin Laden had lived at the fortified compound for six years, officials said, putting him far from the lawless and harsh Pak frontier where he had been assumed to be hiding out.

The only information about what occurred inside the compound has come from American officials, much of it provided under condition of anonymity.

They said SEALs dropped down ropes from helicopters, killed bin Laden aides and made their way to the main building. Obama and his national security team monitored the strike, watching and listening nervously and in near silence from the Situation Room as it all unfolded.

"The minutes passed like days," White House counterterrorism adviser John Brennan said.

US officials said the information that ultimately led to bin Laden's capture originally came from detainees held in secret CIA prison sites in Eastern Europe. There, agency interrogators were told of an alias used by a courier whom bin Laden particularly trusted.

It took four long years to learn the man's real name, then years more before Sherlocks got a big break in the case, these officials said. Sometime in mid-2010, the man was overheard using a phone by intelligence officials, who then were able to locate his residence -- the specially constructed $1 million compound with walls as high as 18 feet topped with barbed wire.

US counterterrorism officials considered bombing the place, an option that was discarded by the White House as too risky, particularly if it turned out bin Laden was not there.

Instead, Obama signed an order on Friday for the team of SEALs to chopper onto the compound under the cover of darkness.

In addition to bin Laden, one of his sons, Khalid, was killed in the raid, Brennan said. Bin Laden's wife was shot in the calf but survived, a US official said. Also killed were the courier, another al Qaeda controller and an unidentified woman, officials said.

Some people found at the compound were left behind when the SEALs withdrew and were turned over to Pak authorities who quickly took over control of the site, officials said. They identified the trusted courier as Kuwaiti-born Sheikh Abu Ahmed, who had been known under the name Abu Ahmed al-Kuwaiti.

Within 40 minutes, the operation was over, and the SEALs flew out -- minus one helicopter, which had malfunctioned and had to be destroyed. Bin Laden's remains were flown to the USS Carl Vinson, then lowered into the North Arabian Sea.

Bin Laden's death came 15 years after he declared war on the United States. Al Qaeda was also blamed for the 1998 bombings of two US embassies in Africa that killed 224 people and the 2000 attack on the USS Cole that killed 17 American sailors in Yemen, as well as countless other plots, some successful and some foiled.
Posted by: Fred || 05/04/2011 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [259 views] Top|| File under: al-Qaeda

#1  Forget the PC BS and release the damned photos and be done with it. I wouldn't worry about islamic sensibilities; I'd worry about American sensibilities. The jihadists had no qualms about showing the beheadings of innocent people while they were still living.
Posted by: JohnQC || 05/04/2011 8:36 Comments || Top||

#2  Officials were reluctant to inflame Islamic sentiment by showing graphic images of the body. But they were also eager to address the mythology already building in Pakistain...

Lemee get this straight. The US has been trying to kill UBL for over a decade. This specific op was planned and replanned with meticulous precision for nine months. The brightest military and diplomatic minds worked day and night to anticipate every possible contingency. And yet we're supposed to believe that after all the discussions and coordination this administration still can't decide on releasing the photos? I mean really now..."inflame Islamic sentiment"...really? Aren't you the guys that keep telling us that Bin Laden was an anathema to Islam? Sumpin don't smell right.
Posted by: DepotGuy || 05/04/2011 11:09 Comments || Top||

#3  Bin Laden's remains were flown to the USS Carl Vinson, then lowered THROWN into the North Arabian Sea.

And good riddance.
Posted by: Redneck Jim || 05/04/2011 11:16 Comments || Top||

#4  Release the frickin' photos, Bummer. Do it now. Every minute that you delay fuels the speculation that this whole story is a hoax. It has already become another issue and we don't need more issues. We need to know that bin Laden is no longer a threat. DO NOT GOON THE RELEASE OF THESE PHOTOS THE WAY YOU DID WITH YOUR BIRTH CERTIFICATE. DO THE RIGHT THING. DO IT NOW.
Posted by: Ebbang Uluque6305 || 05/04/2011 11:39 Comments || Top||

#5  Something doesn't smell right. The photos are not going to be released?

There are lots of versions of what happened. UBL had a weapon and fired. He didn't have a weapon but resisted. He hid behind a woman. He threw a woman towards a Seal Team member. The body had to be treated with deference to Muslim burial requirements but then was dumped in the sea. Muslim standards require a person who died at sea be buried at sea; otherwise on land with their head towards Mecca. Another version has UBL pleading for his life. The Pakis claim no firefight. The 12 year old daughter claims her father was executed. British news says UBL fired from his bedroom.

Wait a damn minute! Wasn't all this captured on video in real time. Wasn't Panetta watching this entire raid at CIA headquarters as it unfolded?

Personally, I'm glad UBL is dead whatever the details. But I'd like some honesty, transparency, and forthrightness from my friggin government.
Posted by: JohnQC || 05/04/2011 13:56 Comments || Top||

#6  Call in Trump to clear up the fog of war.
Posted by: JohnQC || 05/04/2011 13:57 Comments || Top||

#7  The whole post-mission has been baffling.

I mean, why spike the ball so soon? If it was also an info grab - first why brag about it, then why not wait 23 1/2 hours (the 24 hour rule or whatever) to give services maximum time to study before showing a photo of a distinguishing characteristic if there is no head and live feed of the catapult launch of the corpse with phalanx salute.

Or just live broadcast that, no caption, let people wonder what the heck that was about, then after the long knives are sheathed to satisfaction, spike the ball.

I find it baffling that an administration, headed by lawyers, seem stunned that Americans, who are used to being presented evidence for claims, would be interested in evidence in claim. Like you joked about, Mr. President, this is a country which believes in Roswell aliens and faked moon landings - and perhaps they can never be satisfied - but lumping the well intentioned people who like evidence into that category is, well, a bit insulting in and of itself.

Personally I feel I have a good grasp on the whys and why nots...I mean, why show a broken pez dispenser but as above there were a number of ways to present evidence. From a man who campaigned openly about the distrust of government. (shakes head)

Beaten to the delivery by a baseball game because he couldn't be on-time.
Posted by: swksvolFF || 05/04/2011 14:30 Comments || Top||

#8  And the answer is... "no".
Posted by: tu3031 || 05/04/2011 14:50 Comments || Top||

#9  I guess Donald Tramp should ask for it.
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 05/04/2011 15:08 Comments || Top||

#10  Obama said there was no need to release the photographs or gloat. "There's no need to spike the football," he said. Well, how about giving the finger? Self-censor invoked.

"we don't think that a photograph in and of itself is going to make any difference." Well, how about at least getting the story straight about what happened?
Posted by: JohnQC || 05/04/2011 15:08 Comments || Top||


Bin Laden killing will embarrass authorities: Pakistani media
[Dawn] Pak media on Tuesday said the killing of al Qaeda founder the late Osama bin Laden
... who sleeps with the fishes...
in a US commando raid would heap embarrassment on authorities hard pressed to explain how he had been able to live in the country undetected for years.

Some commentators suggested Washington would take action to show its displeasure with the authorities.

Bin Laden was rubbed out early on Monday morning by US special forces dropped by helicopter into the compound where he had lived since 2005. He had long thought to be hiding in Pakistain's lawless tribal belt in the northwest near the border with Afghanistan.

President Asif Ali President Ten Percent Zardari
... sticky-fingered husband of the late Benazir Bhutto ...
, writing on Monday in the Washington Post, said his security forces were left out of Sunday's operation. But bin Laden's presence a few km (miles) from a major military facility could undermine the reputation of Pakistain's military and intelligence.

"The failure of Pakistain to detect the presence of the world's most wanted man here is shocking," The News said in an editorial.

"How he was able to hide there without any action on our part is going to be a hard sell to the Americans," echoed the Daily Times.

Dawn said the operation raises a slew of questions about the level of cooperation with Pak intelligence and the military.

"Were they taken into confidence? If so, at what point? Were they consulted or simply informed? Did they play any role in the operation?"

Television networks repeatedly showed file footage of statements by Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani
... Pakistain's erstwhile current prime minister, whose occasional feats of mental gymnastics can be awe-inspiring ...
and other government leaders denying bin Laden was in the country.

Washington has in the past accused Pakistain of lacking the resolve to root out cut-throats and of maintaining ties to fighters targeting US troops in neighbouring Afghanistan.

In October 2009, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton
... sometimes described as the Smartest Woman in the World and at other times as Mrs. Bill, never as Another Henry L. Stimson ...
voiced dismay that bin Laden and other prominent cut-throats had not yet been caught and suggested Pak complicity.

Within hours of the operation that killed bin Laden, US politicians were asking how he had been able to live in a populated area of Pakistain without anyone in authority knowing about it, possibly for years. Some said it was time to review the billions in aid the United States provides Pakistain.

In the Washington Post, Zardari said Pakistain was as much a victim of al Qaeda cut-throats as any country and denied any notion that authorities had failed to act.

But newspapers said the raid would generate more questions on Pakistain's role as an ally in combating terrorism.

"Pakistain has found itself in quite the embarrassing situation. Whilst we have been allies of the US, we have been very trying partners, picking and choosing the cut-throats we wanted to root out and the ones we wanted to protect," the Daily Times said.

"It is hoped we will not be on the receiving end of negative fallout with the Americans, who are in this war for (the) long haul."
Posted by: Fred || 05/04/2011 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [252 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Pakistan

#1  What other terrorist are they holding for Western aid?
Posted by: Black Bart Phuling7750 || 05/04/2011 11:33 Comments || Top||

#2  Our own government should be embarrassed too. For the past 10 years they've been pretending that these bastards are our friends. Everybody knew better.
Posted by: Ebbang Uluque6305 || 05/04/2011 16:01 Comments || Top||

#3  Our own government should be embarrassed too. For the past 10 years they've been pretending that these bastards are our friends. I have no problem with that. You go to war with the allies you have, not the ones you would like to have.
Posted by: Anguper Hupomosing9418 || 05/04/2011 16:30 Comments || Top||


US feared Pakistan might 'alert' Bin Laden about raid: CIA
[Dawn] CIA Director Leon Panetta said in an interview Tuesday that officials ruled out informing Islamabad about a planned raid against the late Osama bin Laden's
... who has won the race to that place where we all eventually end up...
compound as they feared their Pak counterparts might alert the Al-Qaeda chief.

Panetta told Time magazine that "it was decided that any effort to work with the Paks could jeopardize the mission: They might alert the targets."
Posted by: Fred || 05/04/2011 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [258 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Pakistan

#1  BHARAT RAKSHAK > [Times of India] PAK GENERALS [3/4's] AFRAID US MAY NOW RAID NUKES, stealthily as per Abbottabad rad agz Osama, + espec widout need for informing or getting Islamabad's prior approval.

versus

* SAME > KILLING OF OSAMA BIN LADEN A MAJOR DEFEAT FOR THE USA.

> POTUS BAMMER + ADMIN now under the control of pro-War/Imperialist Generals + Admirals, Politicos, Wall Street bigwigs,+ Special Interests e.g. Jewish whom had used OBL as a tool for their Agendums.
> OBL = now a MARTYR in eyes of many Islamist MilTerrs.
> RADICAL ISLAM = now out for revenge. WILL STRIKE BACK AGZ US + STRIKE BACK HARD.
> DEATH OF OBL = INDUCE RADICAL ISLAM TO EXPAND ITS JIHAD + DESTROY ANY HOPES OF OBAMA ADMIN FOR PEACE. The GWOT amy go on becuase Radical Islam will be inspired to fight a WAR OF ANNIHILATION AGZ THE US.
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 05/04/2011 2:03 Comments || Top||


Pak security always tipped off Osama
[Bangla Daily Star] As the first euphoria about the death of the world's most-dreaded terrorist ebbs, the focus is fast shifting to Pakistain, the country where the late Osama bin Laden
... who is no more...
was found and killed.

There are contrary claims on whether Pakistain was informed by the US about the operation and questions are also being raised on how much people in Pakistain knew of Osama's whereabouts.

Last week, WikiLeaks had revealed that a US diplomatic dispatch told the Americans that "many" inside Pakistain knew where bin Laden was.

The document stated that "In Pakistain, Osama Bin Laden wasn't an invisible man, and many knew his whereabouts in North Wazoo, but whenever security forces attempted a raid on his hideouts, the enemy received warning of their approach from sources in the security forces."

Other documents released by WikiLeaks also seem to indicate that the United States possibly got a clue about bin Laden hiding in Abbottabad three years ago from information gathered by interrogators at Guantanamo Bay, the controversial US detainment facility where terror suspects are lodged.

Cables from 2008 released by WikiLeaks talk about the interrogation of a Libyan, Abu al-Libi, who had apparently been with Bin Laden in Afghanistan. In 2003, Libi was asked to become one of bin Laden's messengers, the document indicates.

The document says, "In July 2003, detainee Libi received a letter from [bin Laden's] designated courier, Maulawi Abd al-Khaliq Jan. The detainee was told to take on the responsibility of collecting donations, organising travel and distributing funds for families in Pakistain...The letter stated the detainee would be the official messenger between [bin Laden] and others in Pakistain...In mid-2003, the detainee moved his family to Abbottabad and worked between Abbottabad and Beautiful Downtown Peshawar."

Abu al-Libi was captured in Pakistain in 2005.
Posted by: Fred || 05/04/2011 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [257 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Pakistan

#1  BHARAT RAKSHAK > ROBERT FISK: WAS HE [Osama bin Laden] BETRAYED? OF COURSE HE WAS, PAKISTAN KNEW BIN LADEN'S HIDING PLACE ALL ALONG.

ARTIC > FISK = believes that PAK is also militarily protecting the Leader of the Terr Group deemed responsible for 26/11 = MUMBAI ATATCK.

* SAME > HENRY KISSINGER: IT IS IMPOSSIBLE TO BELIEVE THAT PAKISTAN DID NOT KNOW WHERE BIN LADEN WAS.
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 05/04/2011 1:48 Comments || Top||

#2  Osama was 'always tipped off' until he wasn't.
Posted by: Anguper Hupomosing9418 || 05/04/2011 13:29 Comments || Top||


WikiLeaks: Osama bin Laden 'protected' by Pakistani security
Pakistani security forces allegedly helped Osama bin Laden evade American troops for almost 10 years, according to secret US government files.

American diplomats were told that one of the key reasons why they had failed to find bin Laden was that Pakistan's security services tipped him off whenever US troops approached.

Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence Directorate (ISID) also allegedly smuggled al-Qaeda terrorists through airport security to help them avoid capture and sent a unit into Afghanistan to fight alongside the Taliban.

The claims, made in leaked US government files obtained by Wikileaks, will add to questions over Pakistan's capacity to fight al-Qaeda.

In December 2009, the government of Tajikistan warned the United States that efforts to catch bin Laden were being thwarted by corrupt Pakistani spies.

According to a US diplomatic dispatch, General Abdullo Sadulloevich Nazarov, a senior Tajik counterterrorism official, told the Americans that "many" inside Pakistan knew where bin Laden was.

The document stated: "In Pakistan, Osama Bin Laden wasn't an invisible man, and many knew his whereabouts in North Waziristan, but whenever security forces attempted a raid on his hideouts, the enemy received warning of their approach from sources in the security forces."

Intelligence gathered from detainees at Guantanamo Bay may also have made the Americans wary of sharing their operational plans with the Pakistani government.

One detainee, Saber Lal Melma, an Afghan whom the US described as a probable facilitator for al-Qaeda, allegedly worked with the ISID to help members flee Afghanistan after the American bombing began in October 2001.

His US military Guantanamo Bay detainee file, obtained by Wikileaks and seen by The Daily Telegraph, claims he allegedly passed the al-Qaeda Arabs to Pakistani security forces who then smuggled them across the border into Pakistan.

He was also overheard "bragging about a time when the ISID sent a military unit into Afghanistan, posing as civilians to fight along side the Taliban against US forces".

He also allegedly detailed "ISID's protection of Al-Qaida members at Pakistan airports. The ISID members diverted Al-Qaida members through unofficial channels to avoid detection from officials in search of terrorists," the file claims.
Posted by: Zebulon Thranter9685 || 05/04/2011 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [270 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Panetta to Congress: He was unarmed but had 500 euros and two phone numbers sewn into his clothing, ready to flee at a moments notice, apparently confident a warning would come. Apparently US troops were also stationed yards away in 2008.
Posted by: Lumpy Elmoluck5091 || 05/04/2011 10:46 Comments || Top||


International-UN-NGOs
U.N. rights boss asks U.S. for facts on bin Laden killing
Snip, duplicate.
Posted by: tipper || 05/04/2011 08:37 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [277 views] Top|| File under:

#1  File a Freedom of Information Act request. I'm sure it'll be processed with the same diligence as the Black Panther case.
Posted by: Procopius2k || 05/04/2011 9:01 Comments || Top||

#2  We don't have an obligation to fulfill a UN request regarding UBL. we tried him, found him guilty, and shot him for war crimes and crimes against humanity. End of story.
Posted by: JohnQC || 05/04/2011 9:34 Comments || Top||

#3  They want facts? Sure, happy to provide facts, though they might not like the facts we send them.

Careful what you wish for, U.N. ...
Posted by: Steve White || 05/04/2011 10:39 Comments || Top||

#4  The facts are these:

He killed thousands of our people.

We killed him back.
Posted by: charger || 05/04/2011 12:09 Comments || Top||

#5  "No."
Posted by: mojo || 05/04/2011 15:15 Comments || Top||

#6  Sure no problem. Just as soon as you get the facts on 9/11 from Bin Laden and on the London bombing, and every single suicide bombing since then. That's including every single one in Iraq, Israel, and Afghanistan....

Once you have those (and in detail) and presented them - we'll be more than happy to comply.
Posted by: CrazyFool || 05/04/2011 15:43 Comments || Top||


Iraq
Talabani to Obama: “Iraq is your ally in war on terror”
BAGHDAD / Aswat al-Iraq: Iraq’s President Jalal Talabani has told his American Counterpart, Barrack Obama, on Monday that the world has gotten rid of the biggest “symbol of Evil,” Osama Bin-Laden, confirming that “Iraq is the ally of the United States in the war on terror.”

“The world has gotten rid of the biggest symbol of evil, from a man that represented a symbol for hatred against human beings,” Talabani told Obama, in a letter, congratulating him on the killing of Bin-Laden.

Talabani’s letter, a copy of which was received by Aswat al-Iraq news agency, said, “Our Iraqi people are your ally in the war on terror, and Bin-Laden’s killing has put an end to a criminal, who had harmed the Islam religion, the religion of forgiveness and love, killing thousands of innocent people of different religious, many of them Muslims.”

“Bin-Laden’s killing has created happy feelings, not due to revenge, but because it had achieved justice and put an end to the roots of oppression,” Talabani said.

“We are confident that the terrorist organizations, though being on their way for liquidation, they shall try to carry out revenge operations, necessitating further cooperation and coordination on the international level, to put a final end for terrorism,” Talabani concluded.
Posted by: Steve White || 05/04/2011 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [267 views] Top|| File under:


Israel-Palestine-Jordan
Palestinians Ink Unity Deal in Cairo
[An Nahar] Paleostinian factions gathered in Cairo on Tuesday signed a reconciliation deal that will pave the way for elections within a year and seeks to end the divide between Gazoo and the West Bank.

Representatives of 13 factions, including Paleostinian President the ineffectual Mahmoud Abbas
... a graduate of the prestigious unaccredited Patrice Lumumba University in Moscow with a doctorate in Holocaust Denial...
's Fatah party and its rival Hamas, always the voice of sweet reason,, as well as independent political figures, inked the deal following talks with Egyptian officials.

"All the Paleostinian factions signed the document at a meeting with Egyptian intelligence officials," Bilal Qassem, politburo member of the Paleostine Liberation Organization, told Agence La Belle France Presse.

He said all factions were given the opportunity to discuss the document and air any reservations.

"We signed the deal despite several reservations. But we insisted on working for the higher national interest," said Walid al-Awad, a politburo member of the leftist Paleostine People's Party.

"We have discussed all the reservations. Everyone has agreed to take these points into consideration," he told Egyptian state television without elaborating.

"Paleostinians in the Gazoo Strip and the West Bank will be celebrating this agreement... We must now work to implement what was agreed in the deal," he said.

The deal, which was announced last week, comes after 18 months of fruitless talks and envisages the formation of an interim government of independents that will pave the way for presidential and parliamentary elections within a year.

Maher al-Taher, a politburo member of the leftist Popular Front for the Liberation of Paleostine
... Paleostinian Marxist movement, founded in 1967. It is considered a terrorist organization by more than 30 countries including the U.S., European Union, Australia, Canada, and Antarctica. The PFLP's stated goal is the establishment of a socialist State in Paleostine. They pioneered armed aircraft hijackings in the late 60s and early 70s...
, told AFP that Egyptian officials had "promised to take into consideration all reservations expressed during the signing."

Israel had heavily criticized the agreement, refusing to deal with any government that includes Hamas, which it and the United States blacklist as a terrorist organization.

But Paleostinian officials said the new government's role will be to manage affairs in the Paleostinian territories, while the Paleostine Liberation Organization (PLO), of which Hamas is not a member, will remain in charge of peace talks with Israel.

"The government's role is limited to administrative affairs dealing with the lives of Paleostinians in the West Bank and the Gazoo Strip," Fatah delegation chief Azzam al-Ahmad told news hounds in Cairo on Monday.

"But all political matters including negotiating the grinding of the peace processor will remain the responsibility of the PLO," he said.

Tuesday's signing will be followed by an official ceremony on Wednesday in Cairo, which will be attended by Egyptian Foreign Minister Nabil al-Arabi, Muwafi and Arab League
...an organization of Arabic-speaking states with 22 member countries and four observers. The League tries to achieve Arab consensus on issues, which usually leaves them doing nothing but a bit of grimacing and mustache cursing...
chief Jerry Lewis doppelgänger Amr Moussa
... who has been head of the Arab League since about the time Jerry and Dean split up ...
.After the ceremony, work will immediately begin on the formation of the new government, Ahmad said.

Among the first tasks to be tackled is the establishment of a higher security council tasked with examining ways to integrate Hamas and Fatah's rival security forces and create a "professional" security service.

The accord also calls for the creation of an electoral tribunal and for the release of a number of prisoners held by the rival movements in jails in the West Bank and Gazoo.

Fatah and Hamas have been bitterly divided since June 2007 when Hamas took over the Gazoo Strip, routing Fatah loyalists in bloody confrontations that effectively split the Paleostinian territories in two.

The reconciliation deal marks a diplomatic coup for Egypt's new government, 11 weeks after president Hosni Mubarak
...The former President-for-Life of Egypt, dumped by popular demand in early 2011...
was toppled in a popular revolt.

Cairo had tried for more than a year to mediate between Fatah and Hamas but its efforts fell flat.

Senior Hamas official Mahmoud Zahar told the Egyptian independent daily al-Masry al-Youm that the Mubarak regime had "put pressure on Hamas to make concessions."
Posted by: Fred || 05/04/2011 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [271 views] Top|| File under: Hamas

#1  what could possibly go wrong?
Posted by: Frank G || 05/04/2011 8:47 Comments || Top||

#2  All kissy-kissy in public, but still mighty stabby-stabby in private.
Posted by: mojo || 05/04/2011 10:45 Comments || Top||

#3  Stay away from tall buildings, Mahmoud...
Posted by: tu3031 || 05/04/2011 10:47 Comments || Top||

#4  Egypt is as good a place for the Palestinian homeland as any.
Posted by: Zebulon Thranter9685 || 05/04/2011 14:31 Comments || Top||


Syria-Lebanon-Iran
Barak Says Assad 'Brutality' Will Lead to His Downfall
[An Nahar] The "brutality" of Syrian President-for-Life Bashir Pencilneck al-Assad
One of the last of the old-fashioned hereditary iron-fisted fascist dictators. Before going into the family business Pencilneck was an eye doctor...
's response to anti-government protesters will lead to the downfall of his regime, according to Israel's Defense Minister Ehud Barak.

"I think that Assad is approaching the point where he will lose his internal legitimacy," Barak told Israel's Channel 10 television on Monday night.

"His brutality has caused more and more deaths and is pushing him into a corner. His chances of getting out are getting smaller," he said.

"Even if he stops the bloodshed, I don't think he can restore his legitimacy," Barak said.

"He may recover, but in my opinion it won't be the same and he is destined to meet the same fate as the leaders of other Arab countries shaken by uprisings."

But Barak said that "Israel has nothing to fear from Assad being replaced," despite the concerns of many in the Jewish state, who see the Syrian leader as a known quantity whose downfall could spell violence for Israel.

"The process taking place across the Middle East is very promising and inspires hope in the long-term," he said, but he warned that there was little Israel could do to influence the situation and that "it would be preferable for us to stay out of it altogether."

Israel and the Paleostinians have been keeping a close eye on the situation in Syria, where pro-democracy demonstrators have held weeks of protests seeking the overthrow of Assad's regime.

Israel fears a new regime could take a more hostile approach to the Jewish state than Assad, who has maintained quiet along the border despite close ties with Iran, the Paleostinian bad boy group Hamas, always the voice of sweet reason, and Leb's Hizbullah.

The Paleostinians have kept largely quiet on the unrest, though on Tuesday, several dozen members of the Islamic Hizb ut-Tahrir movement in Gazoo held a demonstration in solidarity with Syrian protesters.

They rolled their eyes, jumped up and down, and hollered poorly rhymed slogans real loud against Assad, calling him a "criminal who is killing his own people."
Posted by: Fred || 05/04/2011 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [254 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Syria

#1  I guess they don't teach much history at Harvard.
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 05/04/2011 3:11 Comments || Top||

#2  ...and what is taught is largely tainted in Marxist drivel.
Posted by: Procopius2k || 05/04/2011 8:54 Comments || Top||

#3  Really? Historically, brutality has been the go-to strategy for thugs of all stripes - at least until Clint Eastwood/The Texas Rangers/US Marines show up.
Posted by: SteveS || 05/04/2011 11:07 Comments || Top||

#4  Look Mubarak in the eye and say that.
Posted by: Zebulon Thranter9685 || 05/04/2011 14:32 Comments || Top||


Hamadeh Urges Suleiman and Miqati to 'Liberate Themselves' from Cheap Political Blackmail
[An Nahar] MP Marwan Hamadeh called on President Michel Suleiman and Prime Minister-designate Najib Miqati to "liberate themselves from the cheap blackmail" that is forcing them to form a weak government that would be a failure on the Lebanese, Arab, and international scenes.

He said in a statement from parliament on Tuesday: "The silence of four months can no longer be maintained over the coup against the prime minister ... as representatives of the popular majority that still stands on the Lebanese scene, we should make a few points clear before the collapse of the last of the constitutional institutions."

"Some constituents of the new majority are leading the country towards either a governmental vacuum or a crisis of government," he said.

Furthermore, he noted that the "pointless" debate over the legitimacy of the president and thwarting any discussion of the illegitimate arms are part of the campaign to impede the implementation of the Taif accord and "what is left of the Doha agreement".

"We had warned the president that a one of the members of the new majority that is participating in the governmental coup is also seeking to stage a presidential one," the MP added.

"The prime minister-designate is caught between following his national conscience and between commitments he may have presented to the new majority when he accepted his appointment," Hamadeh continued.

"The Lebanese long for a government that would solve their problems, but they won't accept the formation of just any cabinet ... and if the new majority's harmony is based on shaky regional axes, then this accord will inevitably come to an end," he noted.

The MP continued: "The new majority's inability to form a government led it to create the joke of requesting the army commander, who should distance himself from political divisions, to name candidates for ministerial positions in the government."

"We hope that General Jean Qahwaji would not embroil himself in a political maneuver aimed at targeting him and the military institution, which is a source of stability for the country," Hamadeh stressed.
Posted by: Fred || 05/04/2011 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [260 views] Top|| File under:


Ex-Hizbullah Chief Tufayli Mourns Death of bin Laden
[An Nahar] A former Hizbullah leader on Tuesday mourned the death of the late Osama bin Laden
... who used to be but now ain't...
, whom he hailed as having "fought to defend Islam and its people."

Sheikh Sobhi al-Tufayli, the Iranian-backed group's first secretary general, lamented the death of a "great man, courageous, sincere in his faith, loyal to his convictions" in a statement eulogizing bin Laden.

But Tufayli, a Shiite Mohammedan who split with Hizbullah in 1992 in protest against the party's decision to participate in parliamentary elections, also noted his disagreement with the radical Sunni al-Qaeda leader.

"Some situations had a negative impact on the unity of Mohammedans and inadvertently served Western interests of conquering our countries."

In 1998, the Lebanese government issued a warrant for Tufayli's arrest on charges of "attacking national security" after he called for civil disobedience against the state.

He is believed to still be living in Leb's Bekaa Valley.

Hizbullah has not officially commented on the death of bin Laden, killed in a U.S. raid on a mansion in the Pak town of Abbottabad, a two-hour drive from the capital Islamabad.
Posted by: Fred || 05/04/2011 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [263 views] Top|| File under: Hezbollah


WikiLeaks: Miqati Says Hizbullah is 'Cancerous' ... PM-designate's Office Responds
[An Nahar] Premier-designate Najib Miqati has reportedly described Hizbullah as "cancerous" calling for ending the statelet that the party has built to allegedly safeguard Leb.

In a WikiLeaks cable published by al-Joumhouria daily on Tuesday, Miqati told former U.S. ambassador Michele Sison that Hizbullah is a "cancerous tumor" and called for removing its statelet whether it was "malignant or benign."

He warned that Hizbullah could drag Leb to a "sad end."

The cable dated January 12, 2008.

Later Tuesday, Miqati's office released a statement saying the comments did not "reflect his convictions" and had political motives, without specifying.
"The prime minister will not get involved in debates with any party, especially over ... words and positions that are in part untrue, in part inaccurate and most of which go back years," read the statement.

It noted that most of the remarks are part of Miqati's "political analysis of the general situations in Leb at the time."

According to the cable, Miqati also called for better U.S. ties with Leb and Syria to "contain" Hizbullah, warning that the main objective of the Shiite party was to form an Iranian military base on the Mediterranean.

The dream of Grand Ayatollah Sayyed Ruhollah Khomeini of exporting the Iranian revolution needed a "launch pad" which is Leb, he said. Achieving this objective requires a lot of time but Hizbullah is "patient," he added.

Asked by Sison if he thought peace with Israel would contain such intentions, Miqati said that peace would lead to a "happy ending," but wondered whether Syria would engage in talks with the Jewish state without a green light from Iran.

The premier-designate's comments came on the eve of the 2009 elections. He told Sison that the era of former Prime Minster Fouad Saniora "was over" and he needed to take a "vacation."

Miqati, according to WikiLeaks, told the former ambassador that Caretaker Premier Saad Hariri
Second son of Rafik Hariri, the Leb PM who was assassinated in 2005. He has was prime minister in his own right from 2009 through early 2011. He was born in Riyadh to an Iraqi mother and graduated from Georgetown University. He managed his father's business interests in Riyadh until his father's liquidation. When his father died he inherited a fortune of some $4.1 billion, which won't do him much good if Hizbullah has him bumped off, too.
was seeking for the top post but wondered whether Soddy Arabia was willing to back him.

Taking up the post without the support of the Sunnis would lead to failure, he said. "I am not ready to fail."

Miqati unveiled that there was no major support by the Lebanese army leadership and former Maronite Patriarch Nasrallah Sfeir to President Michel Suleiman, saying "Sfeir is not in love with" him.

"The Lebanese Armed Forces sympathize with the March 8 forces
... the opposition to the Mar. 14th movement, consisting of Hizbullah and its allies, so-called in commemoration of their Mar. 8th, 2006 demonstration of strength in Beirut ...
at a time when most officers back Hizbullah and (FPM leader) Gen. Michel Aoun
...a wholly-owned subsidiary of Hizbullah...
," the billionaire businessman told Sison, according to the cable.
Posted by: Fred || 05/04/2011 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [267 views] Top|| File under: Hezbollah

#1  Hizbullah is a "cancerous tumor"

Sounds about right!
Posted by: JohnQC || 05/04/2011 9:27 Comments || Top||


Terror Networks
a-times profile of Maulvi Nazir in the running to replace binny
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Posted by: Water Modem || 05/04/2011 12:12 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [270 views] Top|| File under:


Pepe Escobar foams at the mouth: Show us the shooter - make him run for president
AoS note: do NOT use 'tiny' URLs in the source box; provide the full source URL. The mods need that to know how to handle posts. Thx.
Mr. Escobar doesn't like Sarah Palin or Donald Trump, either. Concentrated venom under pressure, poor man.
Posted by: Water Modem || 05/04/2011 12:08 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [247 views] Top|| File under:

#1  My, my...they're wound up like meth heads who can't get any more.
Posted by: tu3031 || 05/04/2011 13:29 Comments || Top||

#2  Reminds me of a granny lady who was with her young grandson at a shopping mall, when some lunatic went on a screaming tear, before being subdued by a few determined security guards.

She said to her grandson, "That is what will happen to you if you keep swallowing your bubble gum."

Heck, that even half convinced me, a bystander, to not swallow gum any more.
Posted by: Anonymoose || 05/04/2011 16:14 Comments || Top||


Home Front: Culture Wars
Obama Hesitated – Panetta Issued Order to Kill Osama Bin Laden
Posted by: tipper || 05/04/2011 19:23 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [384 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Interesting story. I may need to reconsider my opinion of Panetta as a useless, political hack.
Posted by: SteveS || 05/04/2011 20:00 Comments || Top||

#2  After reading the article, it does indeed appear that Bambi has once again, voted 'Present.'
Posted by: USN,Ret. || 05/04/2011 23:56 Comments || Top||



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