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Monday, October 15, 2007

Waziristan Mujahideen kill 40 as 250 Pak soldiers said massacred by own forces

Publication time: 10 October 2007, 19:39

Finally the much feared assault on Waziristan has been unleashed by apostate Musharraf regime using heavy artillery, attack helicopters and air force jets, pounding suspected Mujahideen positions in the populous area of Mirali. There are conflicting claims of casualties on both sides amid reports of heavy civilian deaths and indiscriminate bombing of population centers. The assault comes just a day before the new military command of Munafiqeen Pakistan Army took charge on 8th October. The present fighting around Mirali s been described as the heaviest since 2001.

Heaviest Assault Ever

The military experts have described the current operation as the heaviest since the apostate Musharraf regime joined the so called US War on Terror against Islamic Emirates of Afghanistan, betraying the Taliban Mujahideen and selling the Arab Mujahideen to US intelligence in exchange for dollars. There was already continuous build up of heavy artillery around the tribal areas for the last few months and it came to prominence just after Lal Mosque Massacre orchestrated by apostate Musharraf and his butcher commanders. The Mujahideen began striking heavy blows on the Pak forces stationed in the frontier province especially in Swat area adjoining tribal areas. As earlier reported by JUS, the assault feared as imminent is finally in full swing.

The current assault began on Sunday, when Mujahideen ambushed a security check post and an army convoy as part of their ongoing campaign against Munafiqeen army. The Munafiqeen army employed attack helicopters and air force jets to strike at Mujahideen positions. There were initial reports of deaths of 25 Pak soldiers and martyrdom of 65 Mujahideen but later the casualty figures of Pak Munafiqeen were revised to more than 50. The Musharraf regime forces are heavily pounding the population areas of Mirali in North Waziristan resulting in martyrdom of atleast 52 civilians including innocent women and children. The area of Mirali had become a stronghold of the Mujahideen after the fragile Waziristan Peace Accord took effect last year. Moreover there are reports of over 50 Munafiqeen troops gone missing in Mirali who are believed to be captured by Mujahideen.

According to reports the fate of more than 250 soldiers taken captive by Mujhideen hangs in balance amid unconfirmed reports that apostate Musharraf's forces have bombed and massacred all of them.

According to reports from local officials there is intense fighting going on in various areas around Mirali including Barro Khel, Maski, Essu Khel, Khushali and Hyder Khel throughout the night while more Mujahideen strikes were reported on Pak army check posts in Miranshah. According to Pak Mercenaries spokesman Maj Gen Waheen Arshad, the Mujahideen are highly trained and are getting ammunition from Afghanistan. A mercenary official reported from the area that three foreign Mujahideen were martyred during a clash in Mulgam near Miranshah including one Uzbek and two Arabs. There are also unconfirmed reports of Arab Mujahideen being martyred. The reports mention that most of the foreign Mujahideen in the Mirali area are Uzbeks who would certainly fight alongside local Mujahideen.

The local population has started leaving the area headed for safer places. The wounded people taken to Miranshah hospitals speak of very high number of civilian deaths and heavy destruction. In Mirali, the electricity supply has been severely damaged by intense bombing by apostate forces plunging the area into darkness. A local eye witness reported that he saw around ten security vehicles completely destroyed due to Mujahideen rocket attack on the convoy. A local journalist witnessed 14 dead Pak mercenaries in Hissu Khel and around 30 in Khushali area. There were also reports of downing of army helicopter, the claim army sources strongly deny. Over 30 Munafiqeen dead bodies are also reported to have been recovered.

What really is happening

Amid analysis and speculation as what really is happening in the tribal areas, the closer observation of the situation for the past few months and the nature of conflict the Pak mercenaries are involved in unveil many facts and trends. The recent assault on Waziristan in neither sporadic nor unplanned but a part of well planned military maneuver by the apostate forces. Narrowing down the focus on the region where the intense fighting between the foreign and local Mujahideen and apostate Pak forces is taking place, and tracking the developments taking place during past few months after fragile Waziristan Peace Accord was put in effect last year the true picture comes to light.

The nature of war that the Pakistani army is waging and the Mujahideen are confronting in the tribal region bordering Afghanistan is termed in the military as "Low Intensity Conflict (LIC)", that is described in a spectrum of conflicts chalked out by US military analyst, that involves state armed forces normally trained for traditional warfare and insurgency groups who employ guerilla and urban warfare tactics to strike the enemy. This can be described as "asymmetric warfare". Such kind of conflict needs a favourable population bases where Mujahideen can take refuge and gather resources while easily blending in the local population after carrying out strikes and ambushes on regime's forces. According to Mao Tse Dong, a communist revolutionary who led and won a communist insurgency in China, loyal and favourable population is to the insurgent what water is to fish and fish cannot live in dirty waters. Like previous guerilla wars the training bases and resource centers for Mujahideen are established in inaccessible regions with harsh terrain like forests and mountains. This gives mobility and security to the guerillas' operations and provides for secure bases in which to train and hide, but availability of friendly local population is essential for insurgency in terms of resources and recruitment as well as human cover to some extent. If the regimes forces successfully manage to separate the insurgent from the local population and isolate them in mountains and forests then it gives a heavy blow to insurgency. But in situations where the Mujahideen manage to blend in and take refuge in friendly population the regime forces use all means available and feasible to separate them from local population as first priority. The set of options available to regime's forces include a range of operations including putting the population center under siege and giving an ultimatum to local people to leave the area to avoid indiscriminate bombing. If the local population does not leave either due to the inability or out of support to Mujahideen or guerillas, the regime forces carry out strikes on suspected targets based on credible or no intelligence that may perish innocent civilians but it serves in exerting psychological pressure on the civilians to leave for shelter and isolate the Mujahideen.

After making sure that the resistance has been weakened or neutralized, the regular commandoes with cover fire from regular troops besieging the area move in to clear the area of any residual resistance. This phase involves urban warfare tactics including close range door to door combat to secure strategic buildings of military or psychological significance. This phase is also backed by aerial bombardment from air force or army helicopters. The intelligence based on modern surveillance and local human informants plays vital role in the success of such operations. During the final phase, the regular forces move in to track and destroy any underground bunkers or hideouts of any other sort to kill or capture remaining Mujahideen to avoid possibility of ambushes. Now it must have been noticed that during military operations of this kind, the civilian population is not considered as sacred as thought in the non military circles. In such operations there is always fear of huge innocent civilian casualties excluding those which may involve summary execution or massacre of injured or captured sympathizers, rape of women and brutality on children. In recent times, the regime forces also employ chemical weapons and incendiary bombs to crush the resistance before moving the eilte commando troops in. Sometime chemical weapons like while phosphorus is used to eliminate the dead bodies in order to remove the evidence of massacres. US forces employed the same tactics of urban warfare during their assault in Fallujah in 2004 and were matched by apostate Musharraf's forces during "fake" Lal Mosque operation that massacred more than 2000 innocent women and children.

Weather plays important role during such operations. Observing the history of such operations, one can clearly conclude that autumn season is mostly chosen for such kind of operations. US invasion of Afghanistan was carried out on 8th October, 2001, the same day on which the new military commanders take charge in Pakistan military. The US assault of Fallujah was carried out during same season. Whether it has something to do with Ramadhan is another debate. But the part of reason autumn is chosen is purely military domain. This season is followed by harsh winters in mountainous areas of Afghanistan and Pakistan's tribal belt. The first priority of the regime's forces is to crush the resistance in population areas and secure or occupy the area to deny any training ground, resources, refuge and time to the Mujahideen to regroup and reorganize. The insurgent forces would either be killed or captured or would be pushed to surrounding mountains where harsh terrain and approaching winter shall limit their ability to regain their lost resources or capability to reorganize to previous levels. Then the mountain areas where Mujahideen are suspected to have retreated to are surrounded and heavily bombed using heavy artillery and air power to eliminate any residual insurgent elements. This is what happened during 2001 invasion of Afghanistan when Mujahideen forces after being forced out from population areas of Ghazni and Gardez due to intense bombing on civilians areas, towards mountains of Tora Bora and Shahi Kot were surrounded and heavily bombed and gassed. This whole operation is planned to finalize before harsh winter approaches when it becomes difficult for regime's forces to move freely against Mujahideen targets.

Now keeping the above pattern in mind, the present situation in Waziristan can easily be understood as to what the apostate Pakistani mercenaries are planning to achieve before winter approaches. The town of Mirali in North Waziristan had become a new stronghold of foreign and local Mujahideen consolidated their positions and arranged the area for training and organization after heavy defeat of munafiqeen forces led to Waziristan Peace Accord. The peace accord in such conflict situation is never meant to keep permanent peace as this serves no objective to regime forces. These peace accords or prolonged ceasefires are planned to serve a number of objectives including availability of ample time to re-strategize the regime's military plans, regain the morale of forces on ground badly eroded by defeats at the hand of Mujahideen, reassessment of capabilities and strengths and finally wait for winter to pass. On the other hand the Mujahideen also gain time to reorganize and consolidate their positions and reassess their plans. Now there were two possibilities regarding current military assault. Either it would be launched after December when harsh winter had passed and gain the subsequent time to amass ammunition and arm the forces on the ground or during this season before winter approaches to secure as much ground as possible. If this assault fails or suffers heavy defeat then it shall be halted and peace negotiations shall be given chance otherwise it shall continue no matter how ruthless or merciless it may seem because military minds only know how to win lands and they are least concerned how people feel as their emotional spillover can easily be pacified by using public relations decoys like a missile test to boost public morale and confidence in present apostate regime.

It must be noticed that the current operation is being complimented by already ongoing operation on the Afghan side of border by NATO and Afghan mercenaries. This is hammer and anvil approach to crush the mujahideen from both sides and denying them any space to flee the area where they may gain time and space to reorganize and regroup. This time the operations seems to have been designed to eliminate the Mujahideen in Waziristan once and for all and destroy the alleged Al Qaeda bases and uproot its network that is being speculated by US experts to have grown stronger and more capable to plans more strikes inside the United States on much larger scale as compared to 9/11.

The new military command that has taken charge on this Monday, 8th October, includes Gen Pervez Kiyani , the ex-ISI chief and strong loyalist of Musharraf and vice chief Gen Tariq Majid, the butcher of Lal Mosque and Jamia Hafsa, who was Corp Commander Rawalpindi and who orchestrated and conducted the operation under Musharraf's orders involving 15000 regular troops besieging the Lal Mosque complex while Zarrar Company of Special Services Group (SSG), the elite Pakistani Commandos assaulted and massacred the innocent believers, girls, women and children. The apostate Musharraf has been successfully able to install his loyalist munafiqeen down to Major ranks in Pakistani military whose hands are one way or another strained with blood of innocents and Mujahideen. The Pakistani military does include many officers who are deeply religious and abhor the current massacres but they are either among lower ranks and those in higher ranks have gradually dropped out through normal retirement procedures following low chances of promotions.

In these circumstances, it would be vital for Mujahideen forces to intensify their attacks on bases, the communications infrastructure and especially the supply lines of apostate military forces to throw the situation in balance atleast. The recent strikes targeting commandoes and intelligence personnel have mainly been of revenge nature. It remains to be seen how this assault progresses notwithstanding fears of massacres and mass murder as Musharraf's hands are strengthened by recent political arrangement aligning with corrupt and criminal secular parties to secure next five year term as President of the Islamic nation.

Source: Jihad Unspun

Kavkaz Center
(note terms used are original writers and not from e-team)

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