administration officials believe that the country's spy agency -- Inter Services
Intelligence - ordered the killing of a journalist who had written about ties
between the country's military and militants, according to a New York Times
York Times on July 4, 2011 quoted two unnamed two senior administration
officials as saying that new classified intelligence obtained before the May 29
disappearance of the journalist, Saleem Shahzad, 40, from the capital,
Islamabad, and after the discovery of his mortally wounded body, showed that
senior officials of the Directorate for Inter-Services Intelligence, directed
the attack on him in an effort to silence criticism.
intelligence, which several administration officials said they believed was
reliable and conclusive, showed that the actions of the ISI, as it is known,
were "barbaric and unacceptable," one of the officials was quoted as saying.
senior American official was quoted as saying that there was enough other
intelligence and indicators immediately after Mr. Shahzad's death for the
Americans to conclude that the ISI had ordered him killed. "Every indication is
that this was a deliberate, targeted killing that was most likely meant to send
shock waves through Pakistan's
journalist community and civil society," said the official.
on July 5, Washington Post published a letter (dated July 15, 1998) purportedly
written by Jon Byong Ho, a longtime confidante of the father and son who have
ruled North Korea since 1948, to Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan, father of Pakistan's
nuclear bomb. The purported letter claimed that three million dollars were
transferred to the then Pakistan
Army Chief, General Jehangir Karamat and half a million dollars to General
Zulfiqar Khan for approving sharing of technical know-how and equipment with
North Korean scientists.
Associated Press said if the letter is true, it could deepen the distrust
between the United States
and Pakistan, which are
struggling to set aside their differences and cooperate in the battle against
militant extremists in Afghanistan
and Pakistan. General Jehangir Karamat and Lt. Gen.
Zulfiqar Khan have called it "a fabrication." Pakistan's Foreign Ministry
spokeswoman Tehmina Janjua said of the report, "It is totally baseless."
Pakistan has also rejected fresh US allegations against the ISI and
called it an international conspiracy. Information Minister Firdous Ashiq Awan
told reporters in Islamabad:
"There is an international conspiracy to malign the law enforcement
agencies and security forces. (These allegations) are part of that
Washington 's accusation against the ISI and the purported North Korean
letter came amid reports that the United States has been pressing the
Pakistan Army to allow the posting of a Security Liaison Officer (SLO) at every
corps headquarters of the military but the army has rejected the demand
considering it a security threat.
This is one
of many irritants between US and Pakistan
as the military establishment remains under constant pressure from US
authorities to allow Washington these SLOs to
facilitate effective intelligence sharing mechanism and also to launch covert
and overt operations for hunting Al Qaeda elements in Pakistan, the
report appearing in the leading English language daily The News said.
civilian and military command of Pakistan have resisted the move for a quite
long time and had even at times swallowed the serious and strong worded
warnings during several high-profile visits of US officials to Pakistan in the
The News official sources as saying that the Government of Pakistan was not willing to allow such SLOs to be stationed within the premises and compound of corps headquarters but would be visiting the headquarters as and when needed. But this single SLO proposal also fizzled out.
The post of
SLO used to be diplomatic post in embassies which work in close coordination of
the intelligence agencies of both the countries and maintaining close liaison
in the matters of mutual interests. Majority of these posts are generally
considered under cover posting meaning they are intelligence guys posted under
the garb of SLOs in embassies and foreign missions, the News said.
the New York Times on July 3, 2011also reported that Pakistani military still
cultivates militant groups. Quoting an un-named prominent former militant
commander, the paper said the Pakistani military continues to nurture a broad
range of militant groups as part of a three-decade strategy of using proxies
against its neighbors and American forces in Afghanistan.
the "prominent former commander' gave the interview to The New York Times on
the condition that his name, location and other personal details not be
commander was quoted as saying that he was supported by the Pakistani military
for 15 years as a fighter, leader and trainer of insurgents until he quit a few
years ago. Well known in militant circles but accustomed to a covert existence.
York Times also attributed the unidentified commander as saying that militant
groups, like Lashkar-e-Taiba, Harakat-ul-Mujahedeen and Hizbul Mujahedeen, are
run by religious leaders, with the Pakistani military providing training,
strategic planning and protection. That system was still functioning.