Journalist Syed Saleem Shahzad murdered in Pakistan

From the Asia Times article, Al-Qaeda had warned of Pakistan strike, written by Shahzad:

Al-Qaeda had warned of Pakistan strike”Islamic sentiments are common in the armed forces,” a senior navy official told Asia Times Online on the condition of anonymity as he is not authorized to speak to the media.

“We never felt threatened by that. All armed forces around the world, whether American, British or Indian, take some inspiration from religion to motivate their cadre against the enemy. Pakistan came into existence on the two-nation theory that Hindus and Muslims are two separate nations and therefore no one can separate Islam and Islamic sentiment from the armed forces of Pakistan,” the official said.

“Nonetheless, we observed an uneasy grouping on different naval bases in Karachi. While nobody can obstruct armed forces personnel for rendering religious rituals or studying Islam, the grouping [we observed] was against the discipline of the armed forces. That was the beginning of an intelligence operation in the navy to check for unscrupulous activities.”

The official explained the grouping was against the leadership of the armed forces and opposed to its nexus with the United States against Islamic militancy. When some messages were intercepted hinting at attacks on visiting American officials, intelligence had good reason to take action and after careful evaluation at least 10 people – mostly from the lower cadre – were arrested in a series of operations.

“That was the beginning of huge trouble,” the official said.

Those arrested were held in a naval intelligence office behind the chief minister’s residence in Karachi, but before proper interrogation could begin, the in-charge of the investigation received direct threats from militants who made it clear they knew where the men were being detained.

The detainees were promptly moved to a safer location, but the threats continued. Officials involved in the case believe the militants feared interrogation would lead to the arrest of more of their loyalists in the navy. The militants therefore made it clear that if those detained were not released, naval installations would be attacked.

It was clear the militants were receiving good inside information as they always knew where the suspects were being detained, indicating sizeable al-Qaeda infiltration within the navy’s ranks.

Shortly after writing this article, Shahzad disappeared. Asia Times and International organizations including the International Federation of Journalists, Reporters Without Borders and Human Rights Watch called on Pakistani authorities to immediately release any information they had about the disappearance. He was found dead after a reported arrest by Pakistan’s intelligence agency, the ISI.

He vanished two days after he wrote a story for the Asia Times that said Al Qaeda attacked a naval base in Karachi on May 22 because its negotiations with the Pakistan navy had collapsed. Shahzad wrote Al Qaeda orchestrated the attack as retribution for the arrest of naval officers who were suspected to have ties to Al Qaeda.

Human Rights Watch was told Shahzad would be returned home by Monday evening.

“The relevant people were informed that his telephone would be switched on first, enabling him to communicate with his family,” a Human Rights Watch official told Time magazine. “They were told that he would return home soon after.”

A Human Rights Watch researcher on Twitter released an email that Shahzad had forwarded him Oct. 18, 2010. The human-rights organization had instructions to release it if Shahzad disappeared…

Shahzad was killed after revealing that terror militias are an integral part of the Pakistani government. He threatened to do further damage to the decaying infrastructure that is the worldwide terrorist network. Governments like Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Syria, Iran have been profiting from the terrorist networks they support. The governments extort protection money, and the terrorists provide the reason for protection. If Terrorism Inc. was a building, the politicians that nominally “work” for these governments would be the cement, and al Qaeda, Hezbollah, etc. would be the rebar. The West has been willing to tolerate working with this infrastructure, but the people who have to live in it have had enough. The Arab Spring, the death of bin Laden and recent assassinations in Pakistan are signs that this poorly built structure is crumbling.

Al Qaeda and the ISI know that the foundation of their livelihood is about to collapse. This horrific killing is yet another desperate attempt to to prop it up.


About marypmadigan

Writer/photographer (profession), foreign policy wonk (hobby).
This entry was posted in South Asia. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s