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Militancy Labeled

01 November, 2006

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Eighty-three people, many of them children aged between 12 and 15 were killed in an air strike at a madrassah in Damadola in the Bajaur tribal region (northern region of Pakistan adjacent to Afghanistan) on Monday morning.

The bombing occurred just a day before a peace deal which had to be signed between the government and the local tribesmen in the area in line with north Waziristan peace agreement.

This was the second air strike on Damadola within a last few months. Some 18 civilians were killed in an air strike conducted by the US jets a few months back.

Pakistan's military spokesman, Maj-Gen Shaukat Sultan, said those killed in Monday's attack were all militants and denied that there had been any collateral damage.

The operation, he said, was launched following intelligence reports that the seminary was being used as a training facility for terrorist activities.

But local residents believe the air strike was carried out by fixed-wing US drones which fired hellfire missiles at the compound, killing all those inside the seminary, including its administrator Maulvi Liaqat Ali.

President General Pervez Musharraf strongly defended the overnight air strike on a madrassah saying whoever said that innocent people were killed in the air strike was lying.

They were all militants. They were doing military training there. We were working on them for last six, seven days and we know who they were and what they were doing,' the president said.

But the local people, including the senior minister of NWFP(Pakistans north west Province), Siraj-ul-Haq who led the funeral prayers of the deceased, and later resigned in protest against the air strike, contested the official statement saying the deceased were students, and were busy in studies when the jet fighters bombed the madrassah.

I have seen the charred bodies of various innocent children', Siraj-ul-Haq told the newsmen.

On the other hand, hundreds of thousands of protesters took part in anti-government demonstrations across the country to condemn the air strike, accusing the US of involvement in the attack, and vowing to send waves of suicide bombers to retaliate against Pakistani and US troops.

Here are some questions
1) Local people, and opposition parties, particularly MMA(religious political alliance) claim that air strike was conducted by US jet fighters. What do you think?
2) Was bombing of madrassah unavoidable or the alleged terrorists could have been arrested?
3) What could be the possible reaction to the killing of alleged innocent children?
4) Was air strike conducted by US forces to destroy the proposed peace deal in the area?
5) Do you think that the Pakistani army is killing its own citizens to appease USA?

Reader Comments:

Criminal offence

This killing and bombing by pakistan air force is soley carried out to please the world.Innocent men/women/children who died have to take this government totally accountable for this brutal act. War on terror does not mean that killing ones own people. Human rights watch and also all the political parties should find deep into the truth of this in-house terrorism.

zaid khan, Pakistan - 01 November, 2006

Saving Pakistan

Here are my answers to the questionaire:

Local people, and opposition parties, particularly MMA(religious political alliance) claim that air strike was conducted by US jet fighters. What do you think?

Answer:It can be any body's guess as Pakistani nation sits powerless,the government is haunted by the fear of America, and the military is too much disciplined to act on its own. The poor and the innocents pay the price with their blood. Who knows how grave was the threat of being bombed to the stone age. The sad part is that any defiance on part of Pakistan will completely destroy the country economically and militarily. And that will invite the Indian wolves and hounds to devouver the flesh of a dead nation. Perhaps, it is more easy option to go on nation wide solicitation to pacify and tame our own tribals to understand the global situation.The things will change only when a second super power arises or if Iraq and Afghanistan rid themselves of the outsiders even after Pakistan obeys the master ready with a killer whipping stick.

2) Was bombing of madrassah unavoidable or the alleged terrorists could have been arrested?

Going into tribal territories even with air cover has cost Pakistan army several hundred lives. You have the tribal people, who could not be subdued by Alexander the Great, Chengez Khan, the Turks, the Mughals, the British and the Russians. Now, the Nato is finding the nut as impossible to crack. No matter who did the aerial bombings, this is the only thing they could do. The tribals are the fierecest people on planet earth and the whole world knows about it.

3) What could be the possible reaction to the killing of alleged innocent children?

Musharraf says that there were no innocent children. But to believe it or not requires eye witness varification.American men on top have all types of intrigues, deceptions and lies being registered by the world press every day. There are all types of fabricated stories surrounding Iraq's WMD, Afghan sourced terror or Iran eating up middle east. If children were killed and proved so by eye witness, who has the power to take action on America or Musharraf or Pakistan military.The world clearly understands the constriction, constraints and limitations of the very fact that the whole country Pakistan is only one man Musharraf and the nation of Pakistan is like chickens dancing around the big cat.We have had problem in wrestling Kashmir away from a third rate power like us that is India. Now, who will dare the sole tiger of the jungle, which is America.A lamb can simly watch in grief and horror, when a wolf takes away the baby lamb to eat.All these demonstration and cries of politicians and opposition is chicken dance.BB and NS have already promised to outdo Mushrraf in their bid to obey the master. The only solution there appears to be in nation wide approach is to tame and pacify the tribals by peaceful means.The American wolf has now Islamic blood on its mouth and it is growling to eat us all.Only the higher power Allah will save us.

4) Was air strike conducted by US forces to destroy the proposed peace deal in the area?

Even if America has conducted the air strike, who can stop it. Our leaders have already chickened out with statements that go in disfavour of sympathizing with the whole bloody act. Not asingle country, Islamic or non islamic has shown sympathy with the Islamic tribals slaughter. The whole Islamic world is good only for chicken dance and chicken fighting within.We only have our hearts torn with grief and are powerless to do any thing.And our leaders are fit only to fly insults on the whole tragedy rather than showing a simple or even humble commiseration.The weak nation of Pakistan stands cornered by the superiors while the leaders and the army stays cornered and intoxicated by the world's sole master.The things will change only when a second super power arises.

5) Do you think that the Pakistani army is killing its own citizens to appease USA?

Every body knows the answer to this question and it is best to stay put quiet. And the true fact is that the ruling junta, the rulers, the opposition are promising the same course of conduct.It is a chicken show of chicken comforting chicken, while the big cat eats them one by one.It is a chicken court, where fellow chickens offer a few from within farm with the hope of getting spared if not eaten last of all. Iran's case is different as they have more of hydrocarbons oil and gas combined than any other country in the world. Russia and China may come to Iran's rescue. We have had a deadly experience of 1971, when we were torn apart and none of our alleged friends in Islamic world or China or America came to our help to save us.

Anwar Mahmood, Canada - 02 November, 2006

Baroque Theory

The institutional processes or forces seem to have shaped procurement outcomes. First, the bureaucratic conservatism of the liberal capitalist state. Political and military leaders generally favored continued refinement of already existing systems - the submarine, strategic bomber, fighter, and so on - wich, they believed, had already been 'proven' during the fight against 'terror'. Rather than develop entirely new kinds of armaments to meet changing mission needs, state and military leaders thus favored 'follow on' weapons systems. That is, at the end of a production circle, monies were directed toward developing a more advanced version of the same basic design: the F-80 fighter was replaced directly by the F-104, wich was eventually replaced by the F-16, then the F-117, and so on. Exacerbated by interservice rivalry (competition for scarce state resources), bureaucratic inertia seeped into the design process.
The second institutional force was the technological dynamism of leading corporate defense contractors themselves. Throughout the nowadays period, the Pakistani Military Department of Defense favored keeping a competitive procurement environment, wich ensured that the prime military contractors would remain few in number and huge in scale(in the 1990s, consolidations within the military industry became more frequent and larger in scale, increasing competitive pressures.) In response to this tight market, they were forced to turn small-scale technological advances to increase the value-added component of their commodities in tribal regions. In this manner, the bureaucratic conservatism of the state dovetailed with the technological dynamism of corporate capital in a way that severly distorted the design process of a nation. The enormous productive capacities of the primes increasingly focused on 'trend innovation' - perpetual, micro-incremental enhancements of already existing technical 'performace characteristics.' Salaam!

Shokat Saleem, Georgia - 02 November, 2006


What could be the possible reaction to the killing of alleged innocent children?

Are not all children innocent, or are Muslim children now guilty of terrorism because of their religion?

Do you think that the Pakistani army is killing its own citizens to appease USA? Pak army has been killing Pakistanis since its inception, this is nothing new.

TruPak, - 03 November, 2006

Admittance of my uselessness

Recently, while my father was sitting in ‘Aitekaaf’, I got to know some children at the Masjid-cum-Madrissah. The only act of militancy that was practiced by the preachers was their harsh dealing of the divine students and that of the students was their aggressive batting style in their games period. Did they deserve a missile for that? If that is so, the Army should bomb each and everyone of us; At least me!
I agree with those scholars who believe that Taliban are not fool enough to shelter militants in such a volatile area near the border. I feel sorry for the Armed Forces that they can’t comprehend a simple fact that it’s impossible to bomb an ideology. And I am sorry my dear Bajaur fellows, that I am of no use for you. Don’t pardon me for that but do mail your expectations from me. Lastly, I wish to thank the Security Agencies for waiting for the ‘aitekaaf’ period to end even though their American colleagues might not be happy because more ‘militants’ would have been killed in that case.

Sohaib AJ, Pakistan - 04 November, 2006

The cleansing game !

I'm wondering if the DNA of these "TERRORISTS" was sent to the Homeland Security labs to verify their authenticity.

Before the President,COAS andCEO gave the orders for the strike.The adventures of Don Quixote began in Waziristan leading his great charge to Bajaur,having earlier given a dose to Viziers and Mahsuds. It was now turn of Mohmands and Yusafzais.
Where would he
ride with Sancho Panza next?
Into Chitral and Dir or give a hard spank to the Afridis in Dara and Shinwaris in the Khyber.

Khalid Rahim, Canada - 05 November, 2006

Only way is Diplomacy

The only way to overcome this killing of innocent children and people of Pakistan can be only resoved by negotiation and peacefull demonstration. Involving elders as mediators would be a possible solution.

Peace Lover, Seychelles - 20 January, 2009

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