Information on the extensive ties between jihadists and Pakistan’s military, from Kaushik Kapisthalam at FrontPage:
The whole Farooqi episode just illustrates the perils of Pakistan’s superficial crackdown on terror. For American authorities to continue to rely on agencies like the ISI to vet terror suspects is a dangerous proposition. Obviously the Pakistanis would want to shield anyone that would implicate their army. This means that for a successful war on terror, the US must insist on a bottom-up purge of the ISI to weed out al-Qaida sympathizers in the Pakistani army. Despite Musharraf’s promises on this regard, little has happened. Musharraf replaced the ISI”s Director General under US pressure but left the middle and lower levels untouched.
Pakistan today is the de facto epicenter of Al Qaeda’s operations, with suspects in terrorist attacks from Turkey to Indonesia all being traced back to training camps in that troubled nation. In that context, one can see that the current US war on terror in Pakistan is missing the forest for the trees. Instead of rehashing the “Over 500 Al Qaeda terrorists arrested in Pakistan” story, American authorities must ask themselves why there are so many Al Qaeda men in Pakistan in the first place. The fact is the terrorists feel they are safer there with so many connections to Pakistani agencies. Given this, trying to cherry pick some Al Qaeda Arabs from Pakistan without shutting down the ISI-jihadi nexus it is simply ineffective. American officials also need to ask Gen. Musharraf why all the Pakistani jihadi groups linked to Al Qaeda are still freely collecting funds and recruiting volunteers despite their supposed proscription.
If anything, the thought that Army officers of a nuclear-armed nation are involved in joint operations with an Al Qaeda mastermind should remind people of the seriousness of this dilemma. Who is to say that some other Al Qaeda friendly Pakistani army officers will not hand over a nuclear warhead to terrorists in the future? Isn’t it time for America to stop listening to the State Department status-quo artists and give Gen. Musharraf an ultimatum to purge his army and spy agencies of uniformed jihadists? Congress has reportedly cleared the Bush administration decision to make Pakistan a Major Non-NATO ally, which allows the Pentagon more freedom to grant military assistance to Pakistan and also virtually shields Pakistan from any future sanctions. It would only be prudent that the Pentagon makes actual aid and weapons transfer contingent on a full clean up of the Pakistani military. Anything less would be pure folly.