Monday, December 14, 2009

Webster Tarpley: Obama Declares War on Pakistan (after Bush declared war on Afganistan which Obama continues

Note: I'm sort of half a fan of Webster Tarpley. He comes up with more than his fair share of howlers. But this article is far and away the best I've read or heard about  what the US is doing in Afghanistan and Pakistan. I've believed for some time that it was the Bush-Cheney plan to destabilize Pakistan and do something crazy about its nukes, but this article gives valuable details. --Ronald Bleier

Obama Declares War On Pakistan

Webster G. Tarpley
December 14, 2009

Obama declared all-out war on Pakistan during his December 1, 2009,
West Point speech.

Obama's West Point speech of December 1 represents far more than the obvious
brutal escalation in Afghanistan - it is nothing less than a declaration of
all-out war by the United States against Pakistan. This is a brand-new war,
a much wider war now targeting Pakistan, a country of 160 million people
armed with nuclear weapons. In the process, Afghanistan is scheduled to be
broken up. This is no longer the Bush Cheney Afghan war we have known in the
past. This is something immensely bigger: the attempt to destroy the
Pakistani central government in Islamabad and to sink that country into a
chaos of civil war, Balkanization, subdivision and general mayhem. The
chosen strategy is to massively export the Afghan civil war into Pakistan
and beyond, fracturing Pakistan along ethnic lines. It is an oblique war
using fourth-generation or guerrilla warfare techniques to assail a country
which the United States and its associates in aggression are far too weak to
attack directly. In this war, the Taliban are employed as US proxies. This
aggression against Pakistan is Obama's attempt to wage the Great Game
against the hub of Central Asia and Eurasia or more generally.


The ongoing civil war in Afghanistan is merely a pretext, a cover story
designed to provide the United States with a springboard for a geopolitical
destabilization campaign in the entire region which cannot be publicly
avowed. In the blunt cynical world of imperialist aggression à la Bush and
Cheney, a pretext might have been manufactured to attack Pakistan directly.
But Pakistan is far too large and the United States is far too weak and too
bankrupt for such an undertaking. In addition, Pakistan is a nuclear power,
possessing atomic bombs and medium range missiles needed to deliver them.
What we are seeing is a novel case of nuclear deterrence in action. The US
cannot send an invasion fleet or set up airbases nearby because Pakistani
nuclear weapons might destroy them. To this extent, the efforts of Ali
Bhutto and A.Q. Khan to provide Pakistan a deterrent capability have been
vindicated. But the US answer is to find ways to attack Pakistan below the
nuclear threshold, and even below the conventional threshold. This is where
the tactic of exporting the Afghan civil war to Pakistan comes in.

The architect of the new Pakistani civil war is US Special Forces General
Stanley McChrystal, who organized the infamous network of US torture
chambers in Iraq. McChrystal's specific credential for the Pakistani civil
war is his role in unleashing the Iraqi civil war of Sunnis versus Shiites
by creating "al Qaeda in Iraq" under the infamous and now departed double
agent Zarkawi. If Iraqi society as a whole had lined up against the US
invaders, the occupiers would have soon been driven out. The counter-gang
known as "Al Qaeda in Iraq" avoided that possibility by killing Shiites, and
thus calling forth massive retaliation in the form of a civil war. These
tactics are drawn from the work of British General Frank Kitson, who wrote
about them in his book Low Intensity Warfare. If the United States possesses
a modern analog to Heinrich Himmler of the SS, it is surely General
McChrystal, Obama's hand-picked choice. McChrystal's superior, Gen Petraeus,
wants to be the new Field Marshal von Hindenburg - in other words, he wants
to be the next US president.

The vulnerability of Pakistan which the US and its NATO associates are
seeking to exploit can best be understood using a map of the prevalent
ethnic groups of Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran, and India. Most maps show only
political borders which date back to the time of British imperialism, and
therefore fail to reflect the principal ethnic groups of the region. For the
purposes of this analysis, we must start by recognizing a number of groups.
First is the Pashtun people, located mainly in Afghanistan and Pakistan.
Then we have the Baluchis, located primarily in Pakistan and Iran. The
Punjabis inhabit Pakistan, as do the Sindhis. The Bhutto family came from


The US and NATO strategy begins with the Pashtuns, the ethnic group from
which the so-called Taliban are largely drawn. The Pashtuns represent a
substantial portion of the population of Afghanistan, but here they are
alienated from the central government under President Karzai in Kabul, even
though the US puppet Karzai passes for a Pashtun himself. The issue involves
the Afghan National Army, which was created by the United States after the
2001 invasion. The Afghan officer corps are largely Tajiks drawn from the
Northern Alliance that allied with the United States against the Pashtun
Talibans. The Tajiks speak Dari, sometimes known as eastern Persian. Other
Afghan officers come from the Hazara people. The important thing is that the
Pashtuns feel shut out.

The US strategy can best be understood as a deliberate effort at
persecuting, harassing, antagonizing, strafing, repressing, and murdering
the Pashtuns. The additional 40,000 US and NATO forces which Obama demands
for Afghanistan will concentrate in Helmand province and other areas where
the Pashtuns are in the majority. The net effect will be to increase the
rebellion of the fiercely independent Pashtuns against Kabul and the foreign
occupation, and at the same time to push many of these newly radicalized
mujaheddin fighters across the border into Pakistan, where they can wage war
against the central government in Islamabad. US aid will flow directly to
war lords and drug lords, increasing the centrifugal tendencies.

On the Pakistani side, the Pashtuns are also alienated from the central
government. Islamabad and the army are seen by them as too much the
creatures of the Punjabis, with some input from the Sindhis. On the
Pakistani side of the Pashtun territory, US operations include wholesale
assassinations from unmanned aerial vehicles or drones, murders by CIA and
reportedly Blackwater snipers, plus blind terrorist massacres like the
recent ones in Peshawar which the Pakistani Taliban are blaming on
Blackwater, acting as a subcontractor of the CIA. These actions are
intolerable and humiliating for a proud sovereign state. Every time the
Pashtuns are clobbered, they blame the Punjabis in Islamabad for the dirty
deals with the US that allow this to happen. The most immediate goal of
Obama's Afghan-Pakistan escalation is therefore to promote a general
secessionist uprising of the entire Pashtun people under Taliban auspices,
which would already have the effect of destroying the national unity of both
Kabul and Islamabad.


The other ethnic group which the Obama strategy seeks to goad into
insurrection and secession is the Baluchis. The Baluchis have their own
grievances against the Iranian central government in Tehran, which they see
as being dominated by Persians. An integral part of the new Obama policy is
to expand the deadly flights of the CIA Predators and other assassination
drones into Baluchistan. One pretext for this is the report, peddled for
example by Michael Ware of CNN, that Osama bin Laden and his MI-6 sidekick
Zawahiri are both holed up in the Baluchi city of Quetta, where they operate
as the kingpins of the so-called "Quetta Shura." Blackwater teams cannot be
far behind. In Iranian Baluchistan, the CIA is funding the murderous
Jundullah organization, which was recently denounced by Teheran for the
murder of a number of top officials of the Iranian Pasdaran Revolutionary
guards. The rebellion of Baluchistan would smash the national unity of both
Pakistan and Iran, thus helping to destroy two of the leading targets of US


Even Chris Matthews of MSNBC, normally a devoted acolyte of Obama, pointed
out that the US strategy as announced at West Point very much resembles a
Rube Goldberg contraption. (In the real world, "al Qaeda" is of course the
CIA's own Arab and terrorist legion.) In the world of official US myth, the
enemy is supposed to be "Al Qaeda." But, even according to the US
government, there are precious few "Al Qaeda" fighters left in Afghanistan.
Why then, asked Matthews, concentrate US forces in Afghanistan where "Al
Qaeda" is not, rather than in Pakistan where "Al Qaeda" is now alleged to

One elected official who has criticized this incongruous mismatch is
Democratic Senator Russ Feingold of Wisconsin, who said in a television
interview that 'Pakistan, in the border region near Afghanistan, is perhaps
the epicenter [of global terrorism], although al Qaida is operating all over
the world, in Yemen, in Somalia, in northern Africa, affiliates in Southeast
Asia. Why would we build up 100,000 or more troops in parts of Afghanistan
included that are not even near the border? You know, this buildup is in
Helmand Province. That's not next door to Waziristan. So I'm wondering, what
exactly is this strategy, given the fact that we have seen that there is a
minimal presence of Al Qaida in Afghanistan, but a significant presence in
Pakistan? It just defies common sense that a huge boots on the ground
presence in a place where these people are not is the right strategy. It
doesn't make any sense to me.' Indeed. 'The Wisconsin Democrat also warned
that U.S. policy in Afghanistan could actually push terrorists and
extremists into Pakistan and, as a consequence, further destabilize the
region: "You know, I asked the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff,
Admiral Mullen, and Mr. Holbrooke, our envoy over there, a while ago, you
know, is there a risk that if we build up troops in Afghanistan, that will
push more extremists into Pakistan?" he told ABC. "They couldn't deny it,
and this week, Prime Minister Gilani of Pakistan specifically said that his
concern about the buildup is that it will drive more extremists into
Pakistan, so I think it's just the opposite, that this boots-on-the-ground
approach alienates the Afghan population and specifically encourages the
Taliban to further coalesce with Al Qaida, which is the complete opposite of
our national security interest."'1 Of course, this is all intentional and
motivated by US imperialist raison d'état. .


Obama's speech did everything possible to blur the distinction between
Afghanistan and Pakistan, which are after all two sovereign states and both
members of the United Nations in their own right. Ibrahim Sajid Malick, US
correspondent for Samaa TV, one of the largest Pakistan television networks,
called attention to this ploy: 'Speaking to a hall full of cadets at the US
Military Academy of West Point, President Barack Obama almost seemed like he
might be declaring war on Pakistan. Every time he mentioned Afghanistan,
Pakistan preceded mention.. Sitting at the back benches of the hall at one
point I almost jumped out of my chair when he said: "the stakes are even
higher within a nuclear-armed Pakistan, because we know that al Qaeda and
other extremists seek nuclear weapons, and we have every reason to believe
that they would use them." I was shocked because a succession of American
officials recently confirmed that the Pakistani arsenal is secure.'2 This
article is entitled "Did Obama Declare War On Pakistan?", and we can chalk
the question mark up to diplomatic discretion. During congressional hearings
involving General McChrystal and US Ambassador Eikenberry, Afghanistan and
Pakistan were simply fused into one sinister entity known as "Afpak" or even

a.. A d v e r t i s e m e n t
In the summer of 2007, Obama, coached by Zbigniew Brzezinski and other
controllers, was the originator of the unilateral US policy of using
Predator drones for political assassinations inside Pakistan. This
assassination policy is now being massively escalated along with the troop
strength: "Two weeks ago in Pakistan, Central Intelligence Agency
sharpshooters killed eight people suspected of being militants of the
Taliban and Al Qaeda, and wounded two others in a compound that was said to
be used for terrorist training.. The White House has authorized an expansion
of the C.I.A.'s drone program in Pakistan's lawless tribal areas, officials
said this week, to parallel the president's send 30,000 more
troops to Afghanistan. American officials are talking with Pakistan about
the possibility of striking in Baluchistan for the first time - a
controversial move since it is outside the tribal areas - because that is
where Afghan Taliban leaders are believed to hide."3 The US is now training
more Predator operators than combat pilots.


The CIA, the Pentagon, and their various contractors among the private
military firms are now on a murder spree across Pakistan, attacking peaceful
villages and wedding parties, among other targets. Blackwater, now calling
itself Xe Services and Total Intelligence Solutions, is heavily involved:
'At a covert forward operating base run by the US Joint Special Operations
Command (JSOC) in the Pakistani port city of Karachi, members of an elite
division of Blackwater are at the center of a secret program in which they
plan targeted assassinations of suspected Taliban and Al Qaeda operatives,
"snatch and grabs" of high-value targets and other sensitive action inside
and outside Pakistan, an investigation by The Nation has found. The
Blackwater operatives also assist in gathering intelligence and help direct
a secret US military drone bombing campaign that runs parallel to the
well-documented CIA predator strikes, according to a well-placed source
within the US military intelligence apparatus.' 4

As shocking as Scahill's report is, it must nevertheless be viewed as a
limited hangout, since there is no mention of the persistent charges that a
large part of the deadly bombings in Peshawar and other Pakistani cities are
being carried out by Blackwater, as this news item suggests: "ISLAMABAD Oct.
29 (Xinhua) - Chief of Taliban movement in Pakistan Hakimullah Mehsud has
blamed the controversial American private firm Blackwater for the bomb blast
in Peshawar which killed 108 people, local news agency NNI reported
Thursday."5 This was blind terrorism designed for maximum slaughter,
especially among women and children.


Scahill's report also suggests that US black ops have reached into
Uzbekistan, a post-Soviet country of 25 million which borders Afghanistan to
the north: 'In addition to planning drone strikes and operations against
suspected Al Qaeda and Taliban forces in Pakistan for both JSOC and the CIA,
the Blackwater team in Karachi also helps plan missions for JSOC inside
Uzbekistan against the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, according to the
military intelligence source. Blackwater does not actually carry out the
operations, he said, which are executed on the ground by JSOC forces. "That
piqued my curiosity and really worries me because I don't know if you
noticed but I was never told we are at war with Uzbekistan," he said. "So,
did I miss something, did Rumsfeld come back into power?"' 6 Such are the
ways of hope and change.

The role of US intelligence in fomenting the Baluchistan rebellion for the
purpose of breaking Pakistan apart is also confirmed by Professor
Chossudovsky: 'Already in 2005, a report by the US National Intelligence
Council and the CIA forecast a "Yugoslav-like fate" for Pakistan "in a
decade with the country riven by civil war, bloodshed and inter-provincial
rivalries, as seen recently in Baluchistan." (Energy Compass, 2 March 2005).
According to the NIC-CIA, Pakistan is slated to become a "failed state" by
2015, "as it would be affected by civil war, complete Talibanization and
struggle for control of its nuclear weapons". (Quoted by former Pakistan
High Commissioner to UK, Wajid Shamsul Hasan, Times of India, 13 February
2005).. Washington favors the creation of a "Greater Baluchistan" which
would integrate the Baluch areas of Pakistan with those of Iran and possibly
the Southern tip of Afghanistan, thereby leading to a process of political
fracturing in both Iran and Pakistan.'7 The Iranians, for their part, are
adamant that the US is committing acts of war on their territory in
Baluchistan: "TEHRAN, Oct. 29 (Xinhua) - Iran's Parliament Speaker Ali
Larijani said .that there are some concrete evidences showing U.S.
involvement in recent deadly bomb explosions in the country's
Sistan-Baluchistan province, the official IRNA news agency reported. .. The
deadly suicide attack by Sunni rebel group Jundallah (God's soldiers)
occurred on Oct. 18 in Iran's Sistan-Baluchistan province near the border
with Pakistan when the local officials were preparing a ceremony in which
the local tribal leaders were to meet the military commanders of Iran's
Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC).8


Why would the United States be so obsessed with the breakup of Pakistan? One
reason is that Pakistan is traditionally a strategic ally and economic
partner of China, a country which the US and British are determined to
oppose and contain on the world stage. Specifically, Pakistan could function
as an energy corridor linking the oil fields of Iran and possibly even Iraq
with the Chinese market by means of a pipeline that would cross the
Himalayas above Kashmir. This is the so-called "Pipelinestan" issue. This
would give China a guaranteed land-based oil supply not subject to
Anglo-American naval superiority, while also cutting out the 12,000 mile
tanker route around the southern rim of Asia. As a recent news report points
out: 'Beijing has been pressuring Tehran for China's participation in the
pipeline project and Islamabad, while willing to sign a bilateral agreement
with Iran, has also welcomed China's participation. According to an
estimate, such a pipeline would result in Pakistan getting $200 million to
$500 million annually in transit fees alone. China and Pakistan are already
working on a proposal for laying a trans-Himalayan pipeline to carry Middle
Eastern crude oil to western China. Pakistan provides China the shortest
possible route to import oil from the Gulf countries.. The pipeline, which
would run from the southern Pakistan port of Gwadar and follow the Karakoram
highway, would be partly financed by Beijing. The Chinese are also building
a refinery at Gwadar. Imports using the pipeline would allow Beijing to
reduce the portion of its oil shipped through the narrow and unsafe Strait
of Malacca, which at present carries up to 80% of its oil imports. Islamabad
also plans to extend a railway track to China to connect it to Gwadar. The
port is also considered the likely terminus of proposed multibillion-dollar
gas pipelines reaching from the South Pars fields in Iran or from Qatar, and
from the Daulatabad fields in Turkmenistan for export to world markets. Syed
Fazl-e-Haider, "Pakistan, Iran sign gas pipeline deal," Asia Times, 27 May
2009.9 This is the normal, peaceful economic progress and cooperation which
the Anglo-Americans are hell-bent on stopping.

Oil and natural gas pipelines from Iran across Pakistan and into China would
carry energy resources into the Middle Kingdom, and would also serve as
conveyor belts for Chinese economic influence into the Middle East. This
would make Anglo-American dominion increasingly tenuous in a part of the
world which London and Washington have traditionally sought to control as
part of their overall strategy of world domination.

US domestic propaganda is already portraying Pakistan as the new home base
of terrorism. The four pathetic patsies going on trial for an alleged plot
to bomb a synagogue in the Riverdale neighborhood of the Bronx in New York
City had been carefully sheep-dipped to associate them with the shadowy and
suspicious Jaish-e-Mohammad, allegedly a Pakistani terrorist group. The same
goes for the five Moslems from Northern Virginia who have just been arrested
near Lahore in Pakistan.


As far as the neighboring states are concerned, India under the unfortunate
Manmohan Singh seems to be accepting the role of continental dagger against
Pakistan and China on behalf of the US and the British. This is a recipe for
a colossal tragedy. India should rather make permanent peace with Pakistan
by vacating the Vale of Kashmir, where 95% of the population is Moslem and
would like to join Pakistan. Without a solution to this issue, there will be
no peace on the subcontinent.

Regarding Iran, George Friedman, the head of the Stratfor outlet of the US
intelligence community recently told Russia Today that the great novelty of
the next decade will be an alliance of the United States with Iran directed
against Russia. In that scenario, Iran would cut off oil to China
altogether. That is the essence of the Brzezinski strategy. It is urgent
that the antiwar movement in the United States regroup and begin a new
mobilization against the cynical hypocrisy of Obama's war and escalation
policy, which suprasses even the war crimes of the Bush-Cheny neocons. In
this new phase of the Great Game, the stakes are incalculable.


2 Ibrahim Sajid Malick, "Did Obama Declare War On Pakistan?," Pakistan for
Pakistanis Blog, 2 December 2009.

3 Scott Shane, "C.I.A. to Expand Use of Drones in Pakistan," New York Times,
December 3, 2009. See also David E. Sanger and Eric Schmitt, "Between the
Lines, an Expansion in Pakistan," New York Times, 1 December 2009.

4 Jeremy Scahill, "The Secret US War in Pakistan," The Nation, November 23,

5 "Taliban in Pakistan blame U.S. Blackwater for deadly blast," Xinhua News
Agency, 29 October 2009,

6 Jeremy Scahill, "The Secret US War in Pakistan," The Nation, November 23,

7 Michel Chossudovsky, The Destabilization of Pakistan, Global Research,
December 30, 2007

8 "Iran says having evidences of U.S. involvement in suicide bomb attacks,"
Xinhua, 29 October 2009.


No comments: