Analysis of the Latest Global Happenings


Robin MacArthur, New Jersey.

The coming American attack on Iraq is going to be the Catapult for the next phase of the War against Terrorism

Afghanistan being a non-Arab country, the war there was a mild trailer of what is to come. Iraq is different ballgame. It is the most powerful militarily among the Arab countries. Most Arab governments may not want Saddam, but they want a militarily strong Iraq. They helped Saddam against Iran in the Iran-Iraq war, but he turned against them in his expansionist ambitions when he annexed Kuwait. Thus he spoilt the Pan-Arab show.

How will an American attack on Iraq serve the overall purpose of destruction of Islamic militancy better

There would be violent protests against the Americans on the streets of the Arab world, and there would also be more vicious terrorist attacks against the West and hence more American retaliation. Today, the Saudis are wanting to support the US action, because they fear Saddam, but they also fear that they will be next target after Saddam goes. The Arabs rulers are caught in a pincer between their own peoples' pro-Saddam sentiment and their own conditional dislike of Saddam. While wanting a powerful Iraq they would like to see Saddam go, but they all secretly fear that the Americans will turn on them one by one after Saddam goes.

The future is going to be really interesting and we can see the Americans carrying out the War against Jihad very smartly.

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Optional Scenarios if the USA does not tackle Saddam now

- Loss of face in front of the world.
- Impression amongst Allies that the US is not going to be consistent and decisive in the war against terror.
- Al Qaeda and other Terrorist organisations will be emboldened to strike the US in a way that would be even more devastating than 9/11.
- Saddam will gloat over his second survival and prepare to extend his co-ordination with Islamic terrorist organisations.
- He will be emboldened to be less circumspect with his, so far tacit, links with Al Qaeda (remember the meeting in Prague between his secret service and the Al Qaeda) .
- He will be emboldened to finance terrorist strikes more openly across the globe (remember his giving $ 25000 to the families of the Palestinian suicide bombers).
- He will go full steam ahead with his nuclear programme (remember it was only the Israelis whose pre-emptive strike at his nuclear reactor set his nuke programme back by a few years).
- He will be emboldened to strike the US surreptitiously with more chemical weapons (remember the Anthrax attacks last year).
- Other Islamic terror sponsoring states like Iran and Syria, will also be emboldened to defy and strike at the US and the West.
- It would be a psychological defeat for the West in general, and for the USA in particular, and a psychological victory for terrorism.

So folks, make your choice.

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The D-Day for the Strike against Iraq

Going by the scheduled meeting of UN Assembly and the UN Security Council to pass the resolution on Iraq and the ongoing military build-up in Kuwait, it seems probable that the US would strike Iraq in weeks from 9/11/2002 - the first anniversary of the day the Jihad reached America. We in India know very well what being struck by the Jihad means, since the Jihad reached India 1364 years back in the year 638.

Although the Embassy strikes in 1998 and the attack on the USS Cole in 2000 as also the attack on the US marines in Somalia and Beirut a few years earlier were the first stirrings of American interests becoming Jihadi targets; but the Jihad struck the American homeland only on 9/11/2001.

Today the US is having a hard time convincing its mainly European allies to back its attack on Iraq. The Europeans did the same dithering when tackling Hitler. They allowed him to overrun Austria, as they backed Saddam in his attack on Iran, they allowed Hitler to take Czech Sudetenland, as they stood by for five months when Saddam swallowed Kuwait (And had it not been for US determination, the Europeans would not have lifted a finger against Saddam in 1991), they allowed Hitler to militarize the Rhineland and to re-activate the German Airforce under the guise of flying clubs, as they have allowed Saddam to amass WMDs. He would have gone nuclear much earlier, had the Israelis not destroyed his reactor in a daring air raid.

Now it is high time for the Europeans to stop repeating their mistakes of 1938 in the year 2002.

Today once again while the US mulls over when to attack, with the exception of UK, none of the EU (European Union) states are ready to openly back the US. What lies in the back of European minds is the eerie prediction that Muslim armies are prophesied to overrun Europe in the first stage of the third war, bringing the papacy to an end while ravaging the heart and center of Christendom. Even if one discounts the picturization of the prophesies of Nostradamus as irrational; we cannot but help projecting the trajectories of the union of interests as seen in the Arab League unanimously condemning any proposed American attack on Iraq and the startling statement of Amr Moussa the Secretary-General of the Arab League that an attack on Iraq would open the “gates of hell” and that it would be considered to be an attack on all Arab states. This ominously reflects the NATO outlook where an attack on one of its member states is considered to be an attack on all. And now with Russia an invitee to the NATO and most of the former Warsaw Pact members having been co-opted into the NATO, the polarization seems to be telling - Muslim nations on one side and non-Muslim (mainly Christian on the other). Again the similarity to the Cross Vs. Crescent scenario in Nostradamus's writings are chillingly uncomfortable.

And more uncomfortable to the Europeans because it is they, who lie on the route of an Islamic invasion of the Western world. Twice the Europeans have had to turn back invading Muslim armies - once at Tours in 732 and then at Vienna in the 17th century. Now the developments could see a repetition of these events, if Nostradamus' prophesy of Muslim armies overrunning Europe is to come true. No nation would want its own home to be vandalized, (hence the US concern for Homeland Security after 9/11) although any nation would want its enemy to be destroyed if the battle is fought one the soil of either the enemy nation or on that of a third nation. The US attack on Iraq, could invite an immediate Iraqi retribution on Israel, followed or accompanied by that on Europe - due to Europe's geographical proximity to Iraq. Of course if the Iraqi Sucds have in the meanwhile acquired the reach of ICBM (Inter-Continental Ballistic Missile), then the target of the Iraqis could be anywhere on the globe. And then Star Wars -2 and Patriot Missiles could be the only hope of defense against an Iraqi attack.

A second front that the Jihadis have opened up surreptitiously against the Western world seems to have escaped their attention. The Jihadis are funding non-Muslim terrorist organisations like the ETA - the Basque separatist organisation. Have you noticed how ETA attacks have grown more frequent and more daring after 9/11 and that the attacks are now centered on economically emasculating Spain by terrorizing the popular Spanish Tourist spots and frighten the European tourists who come seeking Spain’s sunny beaches. The other pattern is that of ETA targeting EU meetings in Spain. The message is clear the ETA is on the rampage - but why more so after 9/11? That is the question. (The Jihadis are also trying to open communication channels with other non-Muslim terrorist organisations like the IRA (Irish Republican Army) and the LTTE (Liberation Tigers of Tamil Elam), but have not made any headway with them so far.

The second front of the Jihadis to embarrass the US and the West is the anti-globalization rampage. Who organizes the violent protests from Seattle to Durban to Quebec to Genoa to Johannesburg? Have you thought about that? And why were there no protests at Doha – the only location in the Muslim world where a Globalization meet was held?

The Jihadis are meticulously planning a fifth column in the Western World, as another front of their asymmetric warfare. It is high time the US and the West opened its eyes to the happenings around them and give up the delusion that this is not their war against Islam. They may delude themselves by saying that. But for the Jihadis, this is surely a war of Islam on the rest of the world. Whenever they had their way the Jihadis have moved through an unsuspecting and ill-prepared victim nation like a hot knife through butter; now if human civilization is to be saved, then it is high time for that butter to turn into lava so as to melt the knife of the Islamic Jihad.

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"Discuss Kashmir followed by Oldham, London, Small Arabia (in New York) tomorrow"

Start a discussion on Kashmir today… followed by one on Oldham, Leeds, Burnley, small Arabia (in New York) …etc., tomorrow Western statesmen who are asking India to talk to Pakistan about Kashmir and are asking Israel to talk to the Palestinians, should realize that one day this logic will take them to a disaster. Someday the Muslim rioters at Oldham, Leeds, Burnley and in other cities in the West will ask for special privileges, protection of minority rights and later for a separate state that could decide to become a part of any Muslim nation (so as to belong to the Ummah). Western statesmen need to watch out when they fall prey to demands for minority rights, self-determination, etc coming from Muslims in any corner of the globe. Since the ultimate aim of most Muslims is to have an environment where there is no place for non-Muslims.

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In August 2002, Laden underwent Medical Treatment at Binori Madrasa in Karachi

American sources have now started admitting that after all, Laden might be in the tribal border provinces in Pakistan, where the Musharraf administration claims, its writ does not run. The fact is that Bin Laden moves around all over in Pakistan inspite of being physically incapacitated by a sharpnel injury. And despite the best efforts of serving and retired Pakistani Army doctors, he had not been able to recover his normal speech at least till August 10,2002. Hence no more tapes are being released by that publicity crazed Amir-ul-momineen. Reports dated August 10,2002, state that he continued to be under treatment in the Binori Madrasa of Karachi. But the USAF couldn't find the Binori Madrasa on mapquest!!

The US had ignored warning signals coming from the happenings in Pakistan before last 9/11 and invited 9/11 on itself. If it continues to ignore the warning signals from Pakistan, it risks inviting upon itself another catastrophic act of terrorism. All this is happening while Musharraf continues to be the Achilles heel of the US-led war against terrorism.

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The Logic behind the coming American Strike against Saddam

Strike Iraq… install a sensible (pro-Western) administration in Iraq…increase oil production by doubling it or trebling it from the current 2 million barrels a day to 4 million or 6 million barrels a day…bring down oil prices in the global market from $28 a barrel to $10 or $ 3.... and consequently reduce the cash flow of the oil producing countries….who except Venezuela are mostly Arab and Muslim countries… sap the flow of cash surplus available to Arab states …a significant part of which is used to promote Islamic terrorism in the guise of innocuous activities like building mosques for poor Muslims across the globe, funding Madrasas to create a front for shadowy money laundering activities of terrorists to buy arms and sophisticated electronic equipment like Satellite phones.

This is the logic behind the US insistence of attacking Saddam in spite of the absence of irrefutable evidence of his hand behind 9/11. Hence, in the interests of weakening the forces supporting terrorism, the US needs to be supported in the battle against Iraq.

With Saddam’s Iraq being defeated and a pro-Western Iraqi leader in charge, with the Iraqi oil production doubled or trebled, the Saudis (and all other Arab states and Muslim Iran) would be financially emasculated due to the consequent crash in global oil prices. If other countries respond to this crash, by cutting oil production, the US would provide the post-Saddam Iraq with an Aramco equivalent that would push up Iraq’s oil production, so that Iraq (and the Aramco equivalent) would rake in profits of selling oil in a market where the Iraqi oil supplies are rising but oil prices are pegged at the existing level due to the cut in oil production by the Saudis, other Gulf states, Iranians. In this scenario too the cash flow of all the oil-producing OPEC nations would fall and consequently will also fall their disposable cash to finance terrorism.

In this scenario, the post-Saddam Iraq would increase its cash inflow by raising its oil production in face stable prices. But then Iraq would be ruled by an Iraqi Hamid Karzai, if not an Iraqi George Washington! Thus in both the scenarios, the cash flow of the terror sponsoring countries would fall.

The Rand Corporation report

And who these terror sponsoring countries are has been stated by the recently submitted and well-timed Rand Corporation Report (that unofficially reflects the view of the US administration) where it documents the Saudi Government’s involvement at all stages of terrorism. The reason why the Rand Corporation for the first time named the Saudis so clearly as being involved in ALL stages of Terrorism needs to be viewed in the light of the overall US strategy for the next stage in the War against Terror.

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USA - Wake up to eliminate the roots of nuclear terrorism

We hope that the USA can always apprehend the Dirty Bomb Fidayeen mission as it did this time. But if the USA wants to nip this evil in its bud then it has to go to the root. And the root lies in Pakistan. Abdullah Al Mujahir, a former Chicago street gang member who also goes by the name of Jose Padilla was trained by Al Qaeda in Pakistan (not in Afghanistan). This is one singular fact that needs to make all of us, especially the USA wake up give an X-Ray look at the roots of terrorism today. Abdullah Al Mujahir carried a bomb on his person when he flew into the US from Pakistan. This itself tells a tale of the "success" of Musharraf's anti-terrorism measures. If the USA has to neutralize the threat of nuclear terrorism then it has to destroy the Jihadi infrastructure that has been built up inside Pakistan, especially after the fall of Afghanistan. If this means; deposing the Musharraf regime in Islamabad then it is an affordable price to pay for preventing nuclear terrorism from emerging. The Al Qaeda's nerve center today is not Iraq; it is Pakistan and its primary target remains the USA This banal reality has to be tackled by firm military action inside Pakistan by the US taking over the administration of that country for a fine-combing anti-terrorist operation to snare and destroy the Al Qaeda in its new den - Pakistan.

And did you notice the co-incidence of the announcement of the above breaking news about the Dirty Bomber and that in which India announced the withdrawal of overflying restrictions for Pakistani aircraft over Indian airspace, plus the decision to appoint a high-commissioner designate to Pakistan and the readiness towards gradual de-escalation of the Indian army massed along the Indo-Pak border. The Indian announcement stunned many Indians, but not many would have noticed the co-incidence of the above with that of the breaking news of the Dirty bomber's arrest in the US. The dirty bomber who was trained in Pakistan by the Al Qaeda and was on a flight from Pakistan to the US, was arrested about a month back, so is there anything behind the co-incidence of the announcement of his arrest now; alongwith the Indians announcing measures at moving away from war with Pakistan?

We think the meaning behind the co-incidence lies in the two announcements being a carrot-and-stick for Musharraf to start his act against the Jihadis now or face the consequences. The 'consequences' to Musharraf could also come from the Al Qaeda which has threatened last Friday to assassinate Musharraf. In this eventuality, the American option would be to move in to destroy Pakistani nuclear arsenal, before it is palmed off by the Jihadis. The US policy seems to keep Musharraf engaged in the war against terror. The thorn in the flesh, is his continuing refusal to acknowledge the Kashmir issue as a terrorist problem. The US knows that the Jihad is seamless and so there are no exceptions in the war against terror - so terrorism in Kashmir has to be fought as terrorism elsewhere. This is a bitter (and perhaps suicidal) pill for Musharraf to swallow. If he falls in line with the US, the Jihadis will get him. If he dilly dallies, the US, the West (with India) will get him. So the co-incidence in the above two announcements emanating from Washington (actually Moscow - since John Ashcroft made it from there) and New Delhi; lies in it being a carrot-and-stick for Musharraf to start his act against the Jihadis in real earnest. What he does, time will tell.

But one thing is certain, with the US action being the stick for Musharraf and the Indian one being the carrot; we guess by now everyone reading this knows who the ass is!

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Pakistan's Destructive Capability is Growing

The most important thing for every nation, especially the USA to remember today is that Pakistan's 25 nukes today, will become 50 next year and 500 in 10 years. As also is growing the geographical reach of its delivery systems. So how long is the world ready to wait before it tackles Pakistan in the global War against Terror?

It is time to send in NATO Weapons inspectors into Pakistan as was done with Iraq. But the mandate of the weapons inspectors would also have to include the scouring of the length and breadth of Pakistan for the terror infrastructure that has been built up there over the last two decades and which can cause havoc the world over in the near future.

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Al Qaeda's Missile capability

The recent findings of dis-assembled parts of Missile launching apparatus in Saudi Arabia, should make the West give a hard look at the arsenal that the terrorist groups have been clandestinely setting up along the coast of North Africa. These missiles are meant to target cities in Western Europe. Whether these missiles will have Dirty weapons (assembled nuclear payloads) is anybody's guess!

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The most important thing for every nation, especially the USA to remember today is that Pakistan's 25 nukes will become 50 next year and 500 in 10 years.

The present India-Pakistan crisis will come to pass, but the question is what will its long term consequences be. The answer depends upon "how" it gets resolved, for various parties will take home the messages they want to, and these will become the basis for future direction setting.

May 31, 2002 is likely to turn out as fateful a day in history as September 11, 2001, when the superpower was attacked on its home turf.

On the former day, the sole superpower virtually yielded to nuclear blackmail by Pakistan (conveyed by its ambassador to the UN). Instead of taking Pakistan to task as was done in 1990, the US chose to keep silent on the issue. Worse, the US administration obliged Pakistan by recalling its staff from the subcontinent.

The message is loud and clear to other potential rogue states that if they could clandestinely acquire nuclear weapons, then the US and the rest of the international community would keep off. It would confirm the potent role of nuclear weapons in international relations.

While the US pommels Iraq why does it keep quiet with Pakistan?

The most important thing to remember is that Pakistan's 25 nukes will become 50 next year and 500 in 10 years.

Further, Bin Laden, Mullah Omar and the leadership cadres of the Al- Qaida and the Taliban are today in Pakistan and regrouping their forces. In spite of Pakistan being an ally of the US, the terrorists were able to move from Afghanistan to Pakistan in November-December 2001.

Out of 22 leaders of the Al-Qaida, only two are accounted for. Most of the high profile operations of the elite US and British forces on Afghan-Pakistan border have been futile.

The US vice-president and the director of FBI have asserted that new terrorist threats are inevitable and cannot be stopped. Yet, they seem oblivious of the fact that today the epicentre of terrorism is Pakistan, from where the Al-Qaida is busy plotting new attacks on the US.

The Al-Qaida used to proclaim that they had defeated one superpower (the Soviet Union) and they would surely defeat the second (the US). The US's current indulgent behaviour towards Pakistan would appear to validate their claims.

Lastly, by giving in to Pakistani nuclear blackmail, the US has allowed the nuclearisation of terrorism, thereby encouraging the Al- Qaida and the jehadis to continue their terrorist activities behind the shield of Pakistani nuclear capability. Today, the Al-Qaida and the Taliban may have lost Afghanistan, but they have successfully established themselves in the safe haven of Pakistan, thanks to General Musharraf's brilliant strategy of claiming to be an ally of the US, while in practice supporting and sustaining the operation of the terrorist groups.

This strategy is derived from the one successfully practised by the Al-Qaida and the jehadis in the eighties in Afghanistan. They derived their weapons, skills and other resources from the US for the purpose of overthrowing Soviet occupation and used them successfully against the US itself. Similarly, using General Musharraf's professed alliance with the US, the Al-Qaida will derive the necessary wherewithal to wage its war of terrorism.

In this respect, General Musharraf has been hunting with the American hound even while running with the jehadi and Al-Qaida hares.

In these circumstances, the world, as well as India may have to adjust themselves to a new international security paradigm in which the sole superpower does not have the will to commit itself to a war against terrorism or towards effective countering of nuclear blackmail. The present Indian strategy is based on certain assumptions of superpower behaviour.

The May 31 events call for a radical reassessment of our assumptions. The possibility of the US not pursuing the war against terrorism or countering nuclear blackmail has to be factored in our calculations. Many may rejoice in the sole superpower losing its nerve and abdicating its responsibility.

Others may be disoriented by it. For the Al-Qaida and the jehadis, this will be a morale booster and it will be logical to expect them to initiate more terrorist attacks both against India and the US.

The former is far more vulnerable than the latter. It is also possible the Americans may treat this as a temporary loss of nerve and return to their normal superpower behaviour pattern. In that event continuity will be restored, though at significant cost to the US image and credibility.

This question needs to be answered unrgently in the light of the hard reality about Pakistan's 25 nukes today, becoming 50 next year and 500 in 10 years alongwith the growing geographical reach of its delivery systems.

It is time to send in NATO Weapons inspectors into Pakistan as was done with Iraq. The mandate of the weapons inspectors would include scouring Pakistan for the terror infrastructure that has been built up over the last two decades and that can cause havoc the world over in the near future.

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Is the War against Terror Suspended?

Today, the War against Terror is not being waged in earnest, but has been held in suspended animation - with the USA asking India and Israel to show restraint while confronting the terrorist challenge. And we dread that the war would be so held in suspended animation, till the Al Qaeda explodes the first dirty nuclear bombs in the West; or maybe till Pervez Musharraf sends in the Ghauri, Abdali, Ghaznavi, Hatf and Shaheen missiles with non-conventional warheads into India. In this scenario the West will have act, to counter the very real danger of such Pakistani Weapons of Mass Destruction falling into wrong (Jihadi) hands during the confusion of an India-Pakistan nuclear war. We hope that strategic minds at the American War Office are also visualizing such seemingly unlikely possibilities, to beat the enemies of civilization in their destructive games this time around, and to pre-empt a repeat of 9/11 on a much wider scale.

The recent findings of dis-assembled parts of Missile launching apparatus in Saudi Arabia, should make the West give a hard look at the arsenal that the terrorist groups have been clandestinely setting up along the coast of North Africa. These missiles are meant to target cities in Western Europe. Whether these missiles will have Dirty weapons (assembled nuclear payloads) is anybody's guess!

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India-Pakistan War Scenarios

With the India-Pakistan scenario again on the boil, what is not apparent is that Pakistan is an uni-religious Islamic theocratic state which is threatening that it will use nuclear weapons in a war with India; while India is a multi-religious democratic state that is committed to no-first use of nuclear weapons.

In addition, Pakistan has at its disposal a section of the Indian population loyal to it – the Muslims in India, a weapon that India does not have. So, while it is easy for Pakistan to de-stabilize India with terrorist attacks, India cannot launch such attacks inside Pakistan, whatever the Government of India may say on this matter.

An attack by India across the LOC (Line of Control) in Kashmir will be predictably be met with retaliation by Pakistan and will be touted by it in the UN as an act of aggression by India, drawing condemnation from the Security Council and a call of cease-fire. If the Indian attack across the LOC, spills across all along the border into a full-fledged conventional war then with the prospect of Pakistan losing territory to India, Pakistan would make good its threat of the first use of nuclear weapons, giving India a bloody nose first – irrespective of whatever nuclear retaliation India might undertake after that. In most probability, the first Pakistani nuclear attack could be very damaging to India.

In this scenario the question is "What could be a realistic response from India; given the proxy war that Pakistan is carrying out against India; and will continue to do so in future?"

Can we learn from one Indian leader who defeated his enemy using guile and guerrilla tactics – Shivaji Maharaj, who faced the more powerful Afzal Khan and succeeded in tearing out his guts when the latter tried to throttle him. Can India today build its nuclear potential to a level that is enough to immobilize Pakistan into the stillness of defeat and surrender (as in 1971) through a first (and last) nuclear strike against that rogue state. This is all the more necessary since it is Pakistan that is today the host to Osama and his Al Qaeda. Can India learn from Shivaji and do to Pakistan what he had done to Afzal Khan?

The alternative before India is to bleed slowly into impotent rage and if India does take foolish half measures like a raid across the LOC or even a full-fledged conventional war, the dangerous possibility for India would be to bear the brunt of a first nuclear strike by Pakistan involving massive destruction of Indian cities and a holocaust of its population, leading to a crushing set back if not total and permanent defeat. We also hope the Government of India recognizes the nature of threat it faces from Pakistan today and responds accordingly, even if it has to overwrite formal global opinion against the first use of nuclear weapons. An opinion, which is anyway not going to help India to overcome the mortal challenge that is posed to it by Pakistan today.

We hope the Government of India takes the right decision at the earliest. Especially since Pakistan has spelt out even at the United Nations that it intends to go ahead with the first use of nuclear weapons. A statement that has never been heard before at the UN.

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Other Headline News from the Recent Past

The Battle of Jenin and the Battle of Stalingrad - A Comparison

At Stalingrad in 1943, the Soviet Army, had till then borne the brunt of Nazi attack

At Jenin, in 2002, the IDF (Israel Defense Forces) had till then borne the brunt of Palestinian fidayeen attack

At Stalingrad in 1943, the Soviet Army had surrounded the Nazis

At Jenin in 2002, the IDF had surrounded the Palestinian fidayeen

At Stalingrad in 1943, the Soviet Army flattened the city alongwith the Nazis trapped inside

At Jenin in 2002, the IDF flattened the city alongwith the Palestinian fidayeen trapped inside

At Stalingrad in 1943, the Soviet Army started the irrevocable process of liquidation of the Nazis

But at Jenin in 2002, has the IDF started the irrevocable process of liquidation of the Palestinian fidayeen?

At Stalingrad in 1943, the Soviet Army's victory was the turning point in the war with the Nazis at the losing end

But at Jenin in 2002, will the IDF's victory be the turning point in the war with the Palestinian fidayeen at the losing end

At Stalingrad in 1943, the Soviet Army started the march that was to end at Berlin and on the Elbe river where the Soviets met with the allied forces signaling the end of the Nazi terror.

But at Jenin in 2002, has the IDF started a march that will end at Baghdad and on the Euphrates river where the IDF will meet with the allied forces signaling the end of the Islamic terror?

This can happen but only if the IDF and the Israeli govt do not slacken their resolve and the US for all that it may say, allows the War in the Judea and Samaria to reach its logical conclusion, across the Shebaa Farms, beyond the Golan Heights and across to the East Bank in Jordan; to sweep across the ancient Mesopotamian Plains to reach Iraq.

The point here is also to compare the virulent and pathological hatred which the Arabs and the Muslims have for the Non-Muslims, with the equally virulent and pathological hatred which the Nazis had for the non-Germans, especially for the Jewish people.

The Nazis called their expansionism as Lebensraum like the Muslims call theirs the Jihad.

The Nazis had their Mein Kamph, like the Muslim Koran.

The Nazis killed their enemies in Gas chambers, like the Muslims do by slitting throats and making a tower of severed enemy heads.

The Nazis had their Hitler - the living prophet, the Muslim have Mohammed

The Nazis went berserk with their cries of Hail Hitler and Seig Hail, as the Muslims do with Allah-ho-Akbar.

The Nazis fought to their deaths in WW2 (World War-2), so will the Muslims in the oncoming WW3.

The horrors of WW2 will look like kidstuff with those of WW3 that we will see over the next quarter of a century.

Today, the War against Terror is not being waged in earnest, but has been held in animated suspension. And we dread that the war would be so held till the Al Qaeda explodes the first dirty nuclear bombs, in the West, or after Saddam sends in Scuds with non-conventional warheads into Israel, or maybe beyond. We hope that strategic minds at the American War Office are also visualizing such seemingly unlikely possibilities, to beat the enemies of civilization in their destructive games this time around, and to pre-empt a repeat of 9/11 on a much wider scale.

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Israeli Action in the West Bank and American War Plans for Saddam - Where do these objectives clash?

Some American war strategists and many European political analysts perceive a clash of objectives between the Israeli action in the West Bank and their own war plans to divest Saddam of his arsenal of WMD (Weapons of mass Destruction) by replacing him with a sensible Government in Iraq. But do the two war objectives clash with each other or do they compliment one other? Let's take a close look:

Both the Palestinians and the Iraqis want to obliterate the state of Israel. Iraq has the Al Quds battalion set up for the stated purpose of destroying Israel (or liberating Palestine as the Iraqis put it).

The Iraqis and Palestinians, were the only two Arab nations who openly celebrated the 9/11 attacks.

Only the Iraqis and Palestinians have been brazen to attack Israel's heartland - one with Scuds and the other with suicide bombers. No other Arab nation has dared to attack Israel within its territory. The Syrian, Egyptian and Jordanian attacks on Israel have been at Israel's borders.

No Arab nation has attacked Israel unilaterally as have the Iraqis and Palestinians. Israel had not attacked Iraq in 1991 when Saddam sent in the Scuds; nor did it attack the Palestinians when the Palestinian attacks on Israel began first with stones, then with machine guns, followed by Kassem-1 and Kassem-2 missiles to culminate with suicide bombers, and god knows what the Palestinians will do hence - we hear that they have already assembled devices like crude dirty bombs with nuclear components. This could be the next shock.

So is there any logical or strategic reason for separating the Israeli retaliation against Palestinian aggression and America's wanting to extend the war against terror to destroy Saddam's WMD arsenal? And all this is in addition to the fact that the Islamic Jihad is seamless across various Muslim nations; and so action by Israel against one chapter of the terror of Jihad in the West Bank cannot contravene action by the USA against another chapter of the terror of Jihad as personified by Saddam's Iraq. Those of us having any doubts on this front, need to rub their eyes hard enough, so that the false hope of securing the backing of other Arab nations for the global action against Saddam does no longer mislead us in opposing Israeli action in the West Bank. More so because, in the West Bank, Israel is fighting the civilized world's war against Islamic terrorism.

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IDF (Israel Defense Forces) should storm the Church of Nativity

For those in Israel who are coming under undue pressure from European countries about assaulting the Church of Nativity in Manger Square Bethlehem, India can show the way. In an equally unfortunate event in 1984 when some misled terrorists took shelter in the Golden Temple at Amritsar, the Indian army besieged the Golden Temple and finally stormed it with tanks and in the process destroyed the Akal Takth one of the buildings in the complex. Notably, the Indian army hunted down and killed the leader of the gang of terrorists holed up inside the temple. The name of this terrorist mastermind was Sant Bhindrawale. Significantly, the Golden Temple is to the Sikhs what the Church of Nativity is to Christendom.

But in India they follow the dictum that a criminal is not safe anywhere on earth. Indians have done this with a mosque too, when a Pakistani Muslim terrorist named Mast Gul hid himself and his accomplices in the Hazratbal Masjid in Kashmir, the Indian army besieged the mosque and finally stormed it. Although this time knowing that the Indian army had earlier stormed the Golden Temple, Mast Gul made good his escape before the army stormed the temple. The Hazratbal Masjid is no ordinary mosque. It is the most important mosque in Kashmir and is reputed to have a strand of hair of the prophet of Islam hence the name Hazrat+Bal; where Bal means hair and Hazrat is one of the terms used to refer to the prophet of Islam.

And finally if the Israelis storm the Church of Nativity we do not think the Americans should mind. We are sure the American marines would have stormed any Church in the US if the terrorists had taken sanctuary there after killing American citizens.

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Armageddon - Thus spaketh the Lord (Extracts from the Bible)

The recent mammoth march of Jewish Americans in Washington has struck a responsive chord among many American Senators about the legitimacy of the war that the Israelis have been forced to wage. For many of the Senators, Israel is just carrying out its role in the Biblical Prophesy according to which:

Matthew 24:6 - BLB- As we approach the end we will hear of wars and rumors of wars. Article 26 - Wars and Rumors of Wars

The many wars with Muslims that started with the Lebanese Civil War between the Maronite Christians and the Muslims in the 1970s

Revelation 16:12-21 - BLB- The Battle of Armageddon is one of three wars which must still be fought. Article 63 - Time of the War of Armageddon

The third world war?

Matthew 24:7 - BLB- Earthquakes will increase toward the end. Article 29 - Earthquakes

They have started in Afghanistan

Revelation 19:11-21 - BLB- Antichrist and kings of earth will be assembled to make war against Christ. Article 81 Battle of Armageddon

The impending coalition of Arab and Muslim nations?

Revelation 20:14-15 - BLB- Antichrist (the beast) and the False Prophet will be cast into the Lake of Fire at the end of the Battle of Armageddon. Article 84 - The Last War

A thermonuclear cauldron?

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How to stop the Palestinian Intifadah from spreading to the USA?

Remember the images of Palestinians clapping and singing and distributing candy on 9/11? This captures the innermost mindset of the Palestinians about the USA. With the situation in the Middle East reaching a boiling point, what can stop a Palestinian émigré settled in the USA from making a bomb and exploding himself (or herself) at Times Square in New York? Nothing. Just because this has not happened till date, there is no guarantee that this incident cannot occur in the US sometime in the future. We write this basing ourselves on the growing size and virulence of the pro-Palestinian protests by Muslim groups that are more anti-American than pro- Palestinian.

The cries they raise are not for peace but for war. They seem all geared-up for a fight with Israel and the USA. They do not tell Israel that its counter-attack on the Palestinians is not justified, since the Palestinians never threatened the existence of Israel, that the Palestinians always wished that Israel survives and thrives. Why do these protestors not condemn Israel by saying that the Israelis are attacking a peace-loving and peace-seeking non-violent and pacifist community like the Palestinians? Simply because the Palestinians are a warlike community who do not want peace. They want war and do not want to co-exist with Israel, they want to destroy Israel. The situation for Israel is not "live and let live" as the Israelis would want, but "kill or be killed" in a war that is being imposed on them by the Palestinians.

Since war-mongering seems to be very apparently the mindset of the anti-American protesters, it is just a matter of time before the first act of violence is witnessed in the USA. What is happening today in Jerusalem, Tel Aviv and Haifa will repeat itself in Manhattan, Washington, and perhaps London, and Paris too.

With Islam being the fastest growing religion in the USA, it should provide a growing audience for the USA baiters to raise a cry for a Jihad against the US and recruits ready to become martyrs (sic) while carrying out their heinous acts of suicide bombings in the USA . The Department of Homeland Security needs to read the writing on the wall and take defensive measure immediately. These can include preemptive detention of the organizers of the anti-Israeli protests. Also a de-linking of the American strategy with Iraq and the Palestinian problem would make it easier to distinguish the wood from the trees and roll out the war with Iraq without seeking that illusory Arab support for which Israel is being asked to withdraw from the West Bank.

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Wider War coming after Colin Powell departs from Israel?

In the evolving situation in the Middle East, several of Israel's Labor Party members of Sharon's diverse cabinet keep urging restraint to give diplomacy more time to avert a wider war, particularly in light of Powell's visit.

But their policy of restraint will work against Israel's interests. Lets see how.

The USA wants peace in the West Bank so that it can go ahead with its Iraq campaign. With (and if) the West Bank becomes quiet, the American plans for an attack on Iraq will be set rolling. And when Saddam senses that the American attack is imminent, he will first throw the Al Quds or Palestine Liberation Force that he has assembled to attack Northern Israel alongwith the Hezbollah. Hezbollah which has about 8,000 to 10,000 rockets capable of reaching inside Israel. But Israel has opted for what it calls a policy of restraint, striking only surgically at suspected Hezbollah positions and not bombing more widely across Lebanon or targeting its ally, Syria. This way Hezbollah's striking capability is still intact.

Immediately after the American attack on Iraq begins (or before - if Saddam can sense the zero hour), Saddam's second step would be send the Scuds into Israel, but this time not with conventional warheads. Maybe biological, chemical or god forbid, maybe even thermonuclear.

Today Israel's position is like a stroller in a New York Park, who is locked in a fistfight with the mugger (the Palestinians); while the Sniper (Saddam Hussein) can decide his time to shoot at Israel. While all this is happening, the Supercop USA is asking Israel to call off the fight, so that the supercop himself can get the support of other muggers (other Arab States) while he gets at the sniper.. The point is that - the minute this fight is called off the sniper will shoot Israel, before the supercop can get the sniper. And the other muggers (Arab states) are anyway not going to support the supercop against the sniper.

For the sake of Israel's security the Israelis need to tell the supercop to go about his job of nailing the sniper, without waiting for the park stroller (Israel) to call off his fistfight with the mugger (Palestinians). At the end of the day we need to nail both the mugger (the Palestinians) and the sniper (Saddam), without expecting other muggers (other Arab states) to express support for the supercop!

So in today's situation Israel should, without further delay, preemptively destroy Hezbollah's striking capacity and simultaneously America, if not Israel itself, should do the same with Iraq.

We hope the supercop understands this.

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Is Saddam preparing to become a Suicide Bomber for the entire Middle East?

His rush to become the first to unilaterally impose an oil embargo on the West, shows Saddam's desperation. His desperation is taking him towards acquire martyrdom (murderdom) while trying to blow up Israel along with the entire Middle East at least, since he cannot blow up the USA along with the entire world. Given a chance he would not hesitate to do even the latter.

He has proved the kind of desperado he is with his attack on Iran in the eighties, his invasion of Kuwait in 1990, his smashing scuds into Israel and his thumbing the only superpower on this globe and surviving for decades. And now knowing that the American noose is slowly but surely tightening around him, he is going to be at his desperate best in the coming weeks, if not months.

It is here that Israel and the USA should learn from the tactics of the frontline soldiers of the IDF (Israel Defense Forces) who have staved off many suicide bombers in their campaign in the West Bank, by shooting at any approaching suicide bomber before he can reach his target. It is this pre-emptive firing that blows off the suicide bomber, before he can reach the IDF and cause deaths of Israeli soldiers. The safety margin n the case of such preemptive fire by the IDF is of a few yards between themselves and the suicide bomber.

Speaking on a regional scale, if not on a global scale; Saddam has started his journey of becoming a suicide bomber for West Asia. His belt of explosives is the arsenal of WMD (Weapons of mass Destruction) that he is accumulating and his unilateral declaration of an oil embargo that will cut off his inflow of foreign exchange shows the intensity of his desperation. He is willing to destroy himself in order to destroy his enemies. His psychology is exactly that of a Palestinian suicide bomber, the only difference lies in the extent of damage he can do if he can reach his target - Israel. Time is running out for Israel to preemptively shoot down this approaching suicide bomber. And the safety margin in this case is of a few weeks if not a few days, as it is of a few yards with the individual Palestinian suicide bombers and the frontline IDF troops. The question is can Israel and the USA, read the writing on the wall and respond before Saddam can do the damage he is about to do?

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Signals coming from Crawford Ranch, Texas

To what Saddam and Ayatollah Khameini are saying brazenly; President Bush and Prime Minister Blair can only reply diplomatically. Khameini says that he is proud that Arafat is ready to die fighting the "Zionist enemy" (the term used by the rogue states to refer to Israel). And Saddam says that Iraqis are even ready to fight against the Americans using reeds from the marshes of South Iraq, while his generals say that the Iraqi army is getting ready to liberate Palestine.

The low key Bush-Blair summit at the Crawford Ranch, Texas did address the emerging situation in the mideast with its global implications. But the language as expected was guarded. Obviously, we did not expect Bush and Blair to raise the banner of the crusade or to call on all believers in the True Faith in USA and Europe to pick up arms against the pagans. No. Bush and Blair are not going to appear as Peter the Hermit or Richard the Lionheart - for whatever ideas they may nurture in their heart of hearts!. The leaders of the USA and UK reflect the subtle demeanour of the average British and American citizen, who as we know, never indulge in burning flags of Iraq, Iran, Palestine or for that matter those of Libya, Syria and Saudi Arabia - as do the citizens of these countries. Such antics are left to the Arabs and Muslims who get excited into vandalism at the drop of a hat.

So we were not surprised at the muted tone of the message that came from Crawford Ranch, Texas. But behind the subtlety, lies a tough meaning meant primarily for the Iraqi dictator and for all others who share the ethno-religious mindset of Saddam Hussein. The message "Your time is up Saddam. We're coming for you." The second message is to Yasser Arafat and is contained in the statement by President Bush that he has not lost respect for Arafat, since "Arafat never earned my respect!" All this, translated into the cultivated uncertainty attached to Colin Powell's favouring the besieged terrorist with a handshake. An uncertain handshake that may or may not take place at the end of an itinerary which will take Colin Powell to Jerusalem via, Madrid, Marrakech and Cairo, giving at least some time for a belatedly determined Sharon to complete his counter-terrorist Operation in Judea and Samaria.

Thus the third message from Crawford Ranch, Texas is to Sharon to work fast and wind-up the operation, before the Secretary of State reaches Jerusalem at the end of the week. The USA does not want this operation to go on for too long, since it is already complicating the American push against Saddam that is due to unravel in months, if not in weeks. The USA wants to curtail the opposition it expects from the Arab world, to its expanding the War against Terror by an anti-Saddam move. So it cannot give Israel the carte blanche for its own mini and localized war against terror in the West bank (Judea and Samaria).

The US has larger plans and also has unrealistic expectations that the Arabs will rally behind its move against Saddam. Their hopes will be belied. For whatever the Arab leaders in the Gulf may have against Saddam, they are anyway going to oppose the US move against him this time. Since now an attack on Saddam is going to be more clearly interpreted as an attack on Islam, than it was in 1991. So the American efforts to half-heartedly rein in Israel, will not fool the Arabs. They have anyway unified under the banner of Islam.

The leader of Sudan has openly called for Sudanese to join the Jihad against America. Arabs and other Muslims across the Islamic world are declaring themselves to be wanting to fight the Jihad against the USA. The burning of American and Israeli flags, the marches to the American embassies, the shrill slogans "Death to America" are ominous indications that the mindset in the Muslim world is made up and all ready for a Jihad against the West (and in fact against the rest of the world), the point is to what extent the West (and the rest) can realize this and are we ready to unitedly fight a crusade against the Jihad. The signals coming from Crawford Ranch, Texas are a muted response to this question; if not a mute one.

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How the Mideast crisis could spill across into the Global War on Terror

Today we hear the European Union's (EU) high-pitched cries to Sharon for ending the War in the West Bank. At the back of their minds is the possibility that their oil supplies would be cut off with the impending oil embargo that could be imposed following the summit of Arab and Muslim nations at Cairo. The embargo will re-create the ghosts of 1973, when the OPEC (Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries) led by the then Saudi Oil Minister Sheikh Yamani, imposed an embargo on the West for a long time. Such an embargo once again will not affect the USA, as much as it will affect Europe and the rest of the world, since the USA has its own untouched reserves in Texas and Latin America. But once the oil embargo comes into effect, we shall see the European Union's shrill peace cries being gradually reversed.

They would then have to start asking the US to either resolve the Mideast crisis, so that the embargo is lifted; or as time passes and if the embargo continues to throttle their economies, they would finally sanction any military offensive that the USA would contemplate against the Oil supplying Arab countries. The American action would have to come sooner or later, more so since it is ARAMCO - an American Arab joint venture corporation that control about 67% of the oil wells in the Arabian peninsula.

An Arab land offensive against Israel

Since the 1973 Yom Kippur war, the Arabs have not launched any ground offensive against Israel. But today a situation is being created where they can once again try to do this by proxy, if not directly. Iran who sponsors Hezbollah could send in more of their Mujahideens to cross the Israel-Lebanon border and attack Northern Israeli towns like Kiryat Shmona, Kfar Shoba and Haifa. This restive border again shows signs of disturbances around Shebaa farms - an area contiguous to Israel, Lebanon and Syria.

This time Iraq also may be tempted to send in its proxy troops in the guise of Mujahideen into Israel; quite similar to the tactic used by Pakistan to send in its regular troops into India at Kargil in 1999, in the guise of Mujahideen.

When would the Rubicon be crossed?

With the American noose on Iraq's Saddam gradually tightening, he may also decide to send in Scuds once again crashing into Israel. More so if he suspects imminent American escalation of air-strikes against Iraq. Once this Rubicon is crossed, Israeli and American retaliation against the Iraq would follow. In this do or die situation for Saddam, he is sure to use all the weapons at his disposal and a biological, chemical and perhaps thermonuclear attack on Israel can be expected to ignite the tinderbox in the Mideast.

The Arabs are preparing today for the worst

The Arabs expect this eventuality and to prepare for this they have recently started their troop movements that have been discreetly reported. The Arabs are preparing today for the worst case scenario, to counteract an American action in favour of Israel, as the situation worsens. The proposed summit of Arab and Muslim nations at Cairo that has been called at the instance of the Libyan leader Colonel Gaddafi, would have this as an unstated item on its agenda. Many Arab and Muslim statesmen would also be predicting such a turn of events and would be preparing for this kind of an eventuality. (Incidentally the Libyan leader Colonel Gaddafi sports a blue turban, as does the third Anti-Christ of Nostradamus who also would wear a blue turban when he would declare Islam's war against Christendom!)

The five Muslim nations - Iraq, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Pakistan have nuclear capability. Pakistan's capability was brought out into the open, forced by a show of retaliatory belligerence against the Indian nuclear tests in 1998. But the other four Muslim nations also have undeclared nuclear capability.

What they may lack is delivery mechanism and given a choice would have liked to wait for a few more decades before a military showdown with the West, had Osama Bin Laden's Al Qaeda not rushed the fences on 9/11.

But on 9/11 the die was cast by Laden and now the pitch is being further queered by the Israeli military action in the West Bank. And so the Muslim Rage is being raised to a level that is unprecedented in the history of Islam of the last fourteen hundred years. This can be seen in the anti-Israeli and anti-American flag and effigy burning seen across the capitals in the Muslim world since the war started in Afghanistan.

What we may be a witness to in the days to come

What the coming days may see are an increase in the attacks against Western Journalists as has been symbolized by the Daniel Pearl case; also and more attacks on Churches as a continuation of the attacks on Synagogues that have started in Europe. The attack on the Protestant Church in Islamabad is a symptom of this disease.

Meanwhile in Pakistan, General Musharraf has quietly started releasing many terrorists whom he had apprehended post January 12th after he delivered his history changing speech denouncing (but not renouncing) terrorism as an instrument of Pakistani state policy. Musharraf has begun to stab America in the back, although the Americans may not realize his motives for some more months. But it would be pragmatic if the Americans and other Western nations ask their diplomats in the Arab and Muslim countries to be cautious and also withdraw excess diplomatic staff, as the Americans have already done in Pakistan.

We do not need a crystal ball to say that in this dangerous global scenario, what will ignite the flames of war would be the Arab ground offensive against Israel across the Lebanese border with regular troops disguised as Mujahideen followed by Iraq's resuming of Scud missile attacks on Israeli cities. Hence it would be prudent for Israel, the USA and the EU to foresee this and take pre-emptive action so that Nostradamus' prophesy can cause less damage to American, Israeli and Western interests while it works its way towards redemption.

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With Israel exploding, Laden's and Musharraf''s gameplan seems all set to succeed

Looking at the tumultuous anti-Israeli and anti-American protests, and flag burnings that have started once again in capitals across the Arab world, Osama's gameplan of arousing the Islamic Ummah (population) against the "Great Satan", USA and its "Little Satan" Israel appears all set to succeed. Not that anyone can prevent the Islamic Ummah from uniting against the rest of the world to spread the Jihad, but the point to be noted is that the present string of suicide attacks in Israel, in the context of the Saudi Peace plan are meant to upset the peace-maker's applecart that the USA wants to push ahead with General Zinni's efforts. On his part, Osama has given an indication that his is alive and kicking by sending an e-mail to the editor of an Arabic periodical published from London, condemning the Saudi Peace Plan. A plan if it had succeeded, would have taken the sting out of the anti-Israeli terrorism of the Hamas and Islamic Jihad. This is a point that many would miss out in the heat of current events in the Middle East.

Taking a global view, the defeat of the Taliban and Al Qaeda in Afghanistan, saw them taking refuge in Pakistan. A country where they are till now not allowed to operate freely since its ruler Pervez Musharraf has formally pledged to fight terrorism. A pledge which the PLO chairman Yasser Arafat has not given. We surmise that Musharraf has very deftly and smartly played a role in deflecting the storm brewing in Pakistan by using the ISI to divert the Al Qaeda's new theatre from Pakistan itself towards Israel. Not many are going to agree with us here. But we think there is more than meets the eye in the current explosion of suicide attacks in Israel.

With Afghanistan as a jumping pad for its operations now lost to the Al Qaeda, it needed to keep the fires of the Jihad burning somewhere else. Pakistan could have been the logical choice due to its geographical proximity to Afghanistan and the ISI's history of patronage to the Al Qaeda. But with Musharraf, formally committed to the USA in fighting terrorism, he could not allow the Jihad to be staged from Pakistan. The abduction and murder of Daniel Pearl and the Attack on the Church in Islamabad were the few isolated indications of the Jihadi presence in Pakistan. An outlet was needed if Pakistan was to remain calm. And the outlet is Israel. The Hamas which is a member of the Al Qaeda stable, was used to intensify suicide attacks in Israel to prevent the Saudi Peace Plan from disturbing the Al Qaeda's plan for continuing the global Jihad.

In today's heat of events, we should not lose track of this undercurrent to the happenings in the middle east. In the light of this it would be advisable for the USA to keep an eagle's eye as well as its guns trained on the kingpin of all this - Osama Bin Laden's Al Qaeda and his facilitator, the ISI of Pakistan and its Chameleon President Musharraf. And with Musharraf, like Zia-ul-Haq before him, ensuring that a referendum gives him a permanent place at the helm in Pakistan, the USA has a really tricky partner to play ball with for a long time. How long that time would be is upto the Americans to decide.

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Lessons to be learnt while pursuing the war against terror, post Operation Anaconda phase

In the post Operation Anaconda phase of the war on terror, what can we learn from the confrontation of non-Muslims with Muslims over the last fourteen centuries. What can we learn especially from the Israeli confrontation with the Palestinians (who are one sample of the wider Muslim mindset).

The Israelis strike back every time the Intifada Mujahids strike with fidayeen suicide attacks. In fact the Israelis also have the track and kill kind of strikes of those Palestinian bigwigs who plan the killing of Israeli citizens.

But what the Israelis have not done are - pre-emptive strikes. Had they done so, they would have had to strike those Palestinians who have not yet indulged in acts of murder, but who the Israeli think could indulge in such acts in future. This would be a dicey affair unless you believe that the Palestinians (and the wider Muslim community) represent a criminal mindset wherever they reside on the globe. And that being a Muslim and subscribing to the Quran is itself enough to make a person act violently against non-Muslims, without any provocation. And that for an average Muslim, the very existence of a Christian, Jew, Hindu, Buddhist, Communist, Animist or any other non-Muslim; would be an act of provocation that merits retaliation in the form of giving an option to convert to Islam or be killed. If outright killing is not possible then the non-Muslim be persecuted into submission to accepting Islam. This being the central tenet of the Quran that expresses itself in the Muslim mindset in various forms wherever the situation permits, the Muslims support co-existence, secularism, etc only when they are not powerful enough to overcome their adversary. To some readers this may assessment of Islam will appear stark and brazen, but then it is real. and that is the point.

The Israeli policy that is considered to be too harsh with the Palestinians also does not recognize this hard reality of Islamic world view. Had it been so, then the Israelis would have relentlessly worked for the obliteration of the threat that the Palestinians pose to the very existence of Israel - or for that matter to all non-Muslim all over the globe.

If Israelis want to survive, then their policy should have the single-minded aim of obliteration of the Palestinians. Now how is this to be done. And why is this to be done? The answer is that this is just a logical inversion of what Islam wants to do with all non-Muslims! The only power since the birth of Islam to stop and roll back the Islamic invasion has been that of the Christians embodied in the Franks, Hispanics, Russians and few others Christian denominations. But then these Christian adversaries of the Muslims could not outmatch, or even match the fervor and fanaticism of the Muslims. Once they were militarily victorious, they gave the defeated Muslim population three options 1. Convert to Christianity, 2. Migrate en masse out of the Christian ruled territory, or 3. Face death. Most Muslims emigrated out of Spain after the Christian re-conquest of Muslim Spain.

In all of Islamic history it was only the Mongols under Changez and Hulagu who not just matched; but in fact grossly outmatched the Muslims in their barbarity. The Mongol hordes wrought havoc on all parts of the Muslim world they overran between 1205 and 1258. They brought under the hooves of their steeds, Iran, Afghanistan and Iraq; but did not carry on their victorious orgy into the Arabian peninsula - the heartland of the faith. The Mongols burned down Baghdad - the seat of the Caliphate, executed the Caliph (Khalifa) and slaughtered all men, women and children down to the last person. Macabre as it was, had the Mongols reached Mecca and after giving it the same treatment as they did to Baghdad, held on to it, then the history of the world would have been different. Maybe today, we would have had to fight the Mongols instead of the Muslims! After causing havoc; the Mongols suddenly disappeared into the blue, as suddenly as they had emerged from it.

But the fact remains that out of the only two denominations which have militarily defeated the Muslims, - the Mongols and the Christians; it was only the Christians, in the middle ages, who won in the long term through either conversion, expulsion, or annihilation of the Muslims in the lands they overran. The Mongols had no desire to bring any such change, their object was vandalization and slaughter. Thus although they defeated the Muslims, they themselves belonged to a lower level of human consciousness - wild and savage that they were. In the future, in order to ensure a meaningful victory over the Muslim, we need a combination of ruthlessness like that of the Mongols, persistence like that of the Christians of the middle ages (Franks, Hispanics, Russians), and in addition we also need the will to carry out the mission of destroying Islam and all other expressions of religious fanaticism to its finale of complete, and hopefully permanent, extinction in all corners of this planet. The moral of the story so far is that you cannot half kill a snake. It will heal its wounds, get smarter and strike back at you some day. This is moral the Americans have to learn today hen they go about the war on terror.

Here the Israeli experience of half killing the snake with their track and kill policy through which the Israeli have been living in hell; has a lot to teach us. They have been sowing the wind and reaping the whirlwind with no end in sight to the ever growing cycle of terror. From this we need to learn that the Global War on Terror need to be fought with a single-minded purpose of completely rooting out Islamic fanaticism without seeking provocation or a rationale or justification for any action towards that goal. The war has to be carried on single-mindedly till the all those who have the Islamic mindset in them cease to exist (cease to be Muslims or migrate to another planet!). This catharsis should culminate in the elimination of all other expressions of fanaticism religious or otherwise. This elimination would have to be physical or intellectual, depending on the zeal of the fanatics. If the fanaticism of the non-Muslims measures upto that of the Muslims; then the elimination would also have to be like that of the Muslims. But we are still quite far from that stage; since between that stage and today stands the Muslim challenge to human civilization.

Net net, human society the world over is facing the need for a catharsis. And in this catharsis the forces of reason, and rationalism cannot afford to lose to those of fanaticism and hate that the expression of religion has brought us to.

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Nuke strike plans and expanding the War on Terror

While addressing the meet on the lawns of the White House to mark the six month anniversary of 9/11, President asked for God's Blessings not for America alone, but for the Coalition against Terror. This marks a departure from the standard approach so far. The horizon is now wider; beyond Homeland Security. And security is sought for the entire international community in the interests of human civilization.

Incidentally, some days before this speech, a report that came from the Pentagon, detailing plans for a retaliatory a nuclear strike against Russia, China, North Korea, Iraq, Iran, Syria, Libya. The report has been termed as "dynamite" by a US spokesman. But it has not drawn any response from the Russians; and has drawn only mild response from the Chinese in the form of a report showing the Human Rights record of the US in a poor light. Such responses can realistically be described as a lack of response from the Russians and Chinese. And significantly, the unstated 'Axis of Evil' now includes Syria and Libya too in addition to Iran and Iraq.

These two different pronouncements - President's invoking god's blessings for the entire coalition; and the lack of response from the Russians and the cool response from the Chinese to the American plans for retaliatory nuclear attacks against these two countries among other countries; indicates that a new undeclared coalition that countenances the use of nukes against Syria and Libya, Iran and Iraq is emerging and this coalition includes Russia and China in addition to the NATO member states. All this seems just like another conjecture, but the coming months may prove that it is not.

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The 'Axis of Evil' and all that rotates on it

To checkmate the Axis of Evil, the USA, and its allies in this War against Terror, need to go about systematically de-fanging the destructive capability of the nuclear capable Islamic states of Iraq, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Pakistan. Now here begins the trouble.

Pakistan, or rather the Musharraf government in Pakistan is a declared ally of the USA in the War against Terror. Saudi Arabia is a gas supplier for six decades now (gas as in gasoline). Egypt is a near ally and need not be prematurely antagonized. So that leaves Iraq with whom there is an unfinished war which the Iraqis call the 'mother of all battles'. And of course Iran which though off late has shown liberalizing tendencies has always been at the forefront with the slogan 'Death to the Great Satan America'. North Korea was thrown into the Axis, less because it has clandestinely supplied enriched uranium to meet the Islamic world's nuclear aspirations, and more as a red herring. No pun intended on the word 'Red'. North Korea is in the Axis as a deflection, so that there is no clamor right now that the USA's War against Terror is in fact a 'War on Islam'. Which is what it should be if it is not so already.

The USA needs to carry the War against Terror into its Phase - 2, by de-fanging the destructive capability of the nuclear capable Islamic states. It is our guess that this is in fact the war strategy. With weapons inspectors being readied for a serious investigation into Iraq's WMD capability, the stage should be set for an air campaign against this errant state by mid-summer of 2002. With summer heat the bombing campaign should have its maximum impact. The ground assault can be launched at the end of autumn, to be carried out through the winter of 2002-2003, and completed before the winter is through, with Baghdad seeing the Saddam regime being replaced by a more civilized regime.

With Iraq being put out of business, it would be the turn of Iran to be de-fanged. How the Iranian chapter of the War against Terror would play out is anybody's guess. But the end result can be not much different from Iraq, with the Khamenei/Khatami regime being replaced by a more civilized regime. The Pakistani chapter is even more hazier. It would hinge on President Musharraf tuning his policies perfectly into the strategy of the War against Terror. If he does not do so or does not remain around to do so, then a violent American campaign to de-fang Pakistan's nuclear capability is not unforeseeable, The recent failure of Sultan Bashiruddin Mehmood in a lie detector test is damning clue if not a clinching evidence of the retired Pakistani nuclear scientist's (and by extension Pakistan's Inter Services Intelligence - ISI's) clandestine role in passing of nuclear capability to the Al Qaeda. This is the most worrying factor in this entire exercise of de-fanging the Islamic World's nuclear capability. If this capability has already slipped into the hands of the shadowy Al Qaeda then the job is manifold difficult with unpredictable and dangerous results. This kind of a possibility leaves a question mark on the sequence of events involving Pakistan while de-fanging the Islamic world of its nuclear capability.

With this exception, the Egyptian chapter could be closer in resemblance to the Pakistani chapter. The culmination of the campaign to de-fang the Islamic world's nuclear capability would be the Saudi chapter. This would be the most unforeseeable part. But the fact remains that to win the War against Terror, the USA, and its allies in this War against Terror, need to de-fang the Islamic world's nuclear capability. The first chapter of this exercise begins with Iraq and the phrase 'Axis of Evil' is the opening statement of the first chapter.

The successful completion of the de-fanging campaign should be followed-up with the mopping up of the Islamic Jihad through the remaining parts of the Islamic world. The end of the mopping up operation should signal the successful end of the War against Terror.

In the course of these events the other side shows could be the campaign in Somalia, Sudan, Yemen, which along with the campaign in Iraq and then in Iran, would effectively surround Saudi Arabia and make the campaign to de-fang its nuclear capability logistically easier.

But what could upset this kind of a war plan is the much loathed second wave of terror attacks against the USA or the West in the form of Dirty Bombs, attacks on nuclear installations, a clandestine attack with chemical-biological weapons or with any other unforeseeable medium. If this happens unexpectedly soon, then it would pre-pone the plan of action. We need to be on Red Alert against this second wave of terror attacks and prevent them from happening if the War against Terror is to follow the course being set for it. Let's see how the future events unfold.

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Visible and Hidden Threats to Western Civilization

While it is certain that the USA is sometime going about finishing it "Unfinished War" with Saddam, what is not yet clear is how the USA will finish the War against Al Qaeda an organisation which is intractably intertwined with Pakistan - historically, ideologically, and geographically. In the much awaited Phase - 2 of the War against Terror, while Iraq could be one theater would be easy, since it provides a definite target - geographically and ideologically. The real challenge lies in tracking down the Al Qaeda. While we cannot downplay the dangers from Iraq and its chemical, biological (and perhaps nuclear) arsenal; what we see is the stark clarity of Iraq as an enemy of Western Civilization and of civilization in general. But one thing everyone has to admit, Iraq is neither invisible nor is it elusive. It does not operate in shadows and does not and cannot hide in caves. We are not gainsaying the fact that Iraq is an enemy of Western Civilization and it will have to be tackled sometime or the other. What we are saying is that the manner of tackling it is clear to everybody, laser-guided bombs, ICBMs, Patriots to neutralize their Scuds, and the rest of it to soften Iraq sufficiently, before the marines can walk in with the Iraqi resistance to formally take charge in Baghdad - as it happened in Kabul.

The question remains of the remnants of the Al Qaeda which are today devoid of open state patronage, as they had with the Taliban. Now with the Taliban being consigned to the trashcan of history, the Al Qaeda has now really become a state-less organisation and has no open and formal state sponsorship today. But what about its sponsorship by a state-within-a-state? Many would ask "Huh! Whadda you mean?" We mean the Pakistan's ISI (Inter Services Intelligence), the pro-Jihad sections of the Pakistani Military, Bureaucracy, Political bodies like the Jamaat-i-islami, the rogue private armies like the Jaish, Lashkar, Hizb, etc who are organically linked to the Al Qaeda. How can the USA cut the umbilical cord that links Pakistan with the Al Qaeda? This is the sticky question that the Americans will have to answer while pursuing the Phase - 2 of the War against Terror.

Granted that they have enlisted the participation and loyalty of General Pervez Musharraf himself. But can he set those sections loyal to him and his agenda, to physically move against the pro-Jihad sections in Pakistan? If he cannot do so, then what way are the Americans prepared to take on the pro-Jihad sections in Pakistan whose outgrowth the Al Qaeda is? This is the moot question to be addressed by the USA in the Phase - 2 of the War against Terror.

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Task List to counter Daniel Pearl's Murder

What needs to be done now is for Western secret service organisations to get their show together for an unannounced campaign to target anti-West journalists from media like Al Jazeera, Arab News, Dawn, Ausaf, Jang and give them a taste of their own medicine, as the Jihadis did with Danny. Only such a deterrence will prevent them from spewing out anti-Western propaganda in which they have outdone Dr. Gobbels, while their Jihadi brothers are kidnapping Western journalists and murdering them, to put the fear of death in their hearts to demoralize them from investigating the terrorist underworld and filing reports that expose the true face of terrorism.

This can be followed by targeting of the more rabid of anti-West politicians (we assume that all Muslim politicians are anti-West), military officers, intelligence chiefs, businessmen who finance terrorism, etc., so as to put the same fear in their hearts. We may be told that they do not fear death and in fact are seeking it. Fine enough, give them what they are seeking at double speed. Only such a pro-active policy in the Phase - 2 of the War against Terror can take the war into the enemy's camp - and into his heart.

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Can we reform Muslim psyche also while reforming Madrassa curriculum?

Kudos to President Bush for supporting General Musharraf for reforming the curriculum in Madrassas, during the General's recent visit to Washington. On returning to Pakistan, General Musharraf has also called upon Muslim countries to earmark a fund of a billion dollars for financing the spread of learning science and technology among Muslim countries. Sounds good. But how about reforming the Muslim psyche? If that remains what it is then we shall have in place of the rabble of unlettered jihadis who yell 'Death to America', those like Mohammed Atta (who flew the civilian airliner into the WTC), Sultan Bashiruddin Mehmood (the Pakistani nuclear scientist who shared nuclear secrets with Osama), Omar Sheikh (the Oxford dropout who kidnapped Daniel Pearl) and such others.

How are we to guarantee that by including science and technology in the curriculum of Madrassas, we do not replace unlettered Jihadi cutthroats; with nuclear scientists, aircraft pilots, whose only difference with the unlettered Jihadis would be that they would be more efficient killers and be far more devastatingly successful as they demonstrated on 9/11? This is the question we need to ask when we talk of reforming Madrassa curriculum with modern education. The answer lies in purging the Quran of all its passages calling for murder, rape, torture, of the Kafirs. How can this be done? Can this at all be done?

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The 3rd American Ultimatum to General Musharraf?

Many would raise an eyebrow, when we make a statement that during the forthcoming visit of General Pervez Musharraf to Washington, amidst the raising of toasts to Pakistani-American friendship and the signing of accords for economic assistance to Pakistan as a reward for the services rendered by His Excellency Musharraf as a frontline state in the War on Terror, so far, he would also be delivered the 3rd American Ultimatum for converting his words of 12th January into real deeds.

Unbelievable is it? Yes the 1st Ultimatum was delivered to Pervez Musharraf by Colin Powell on Telephone a couple of days after 9/11 (WTC/Pentagon attacks). This ultimatum led Pakistan to join the American led coalition against terrorism, the 2nd Ultimatum was delivered by British Prime Minister Tony Blair in person during a visit to Pakistan after 13/12 (Indian Parliament attack). This ultimatum brought out the famous 12th January speech by Musharraf. Many would like to believe that President Musharraf has been invited to the Oval Office only to be feted for his role as a crusader against terrorism. But the subtle fact is that he has been courteously ordered to make himself present in person to receive the 3rd American Ultimatum to get moving against the Jihadis in earnest and produce results.

By now the Americans have enough evidence that they have culled out of the unlawful combatants held at Gunatanamo Bay. The fact that some of those grilled Al Qaeda detainees have to carried back on stretchers makes evident, the kind of grilling they go through. Some of them must have been singing out the tune that gives out the involvement that the ISI and the Pakistani Military had (and has) with the Al Qaeda. The Americans would want the ISI and Pakistani Military purged of its Al Qaeda elements. This is one demand that is waiting for President Musharraf when he visits the USA.

Incidentally, the kidnapping of Daniel Pearl is also just one indicator that terrorists sympathetic to Al Qaeda lurk under the nose of General Pervez Musharraf and the kidnappers may do Danny in just to drive a point home to the Americans that the writ of Pervez Musharraf does not run with everyone who matters in the dark world of Terrorism in Pakistan. With threats to all American (and Western Journalists) to leave Pakistan, the Americans would also take cue from such signals to decide the future course of relationship with Pakistan.

Not many know that the Taliban Minister Mullah Wakil Ahmed Muttawakil was physically apprehended in Quetta in Pakistan

The US would also want to know what kind of action Musharraf is going to initiate against the Al Qaeda and Taliban who are holed up inside Pakistan as was evident from the surrender of Mullah Wakil Ahmed Muttawakil in Kandahar. Yes he was formally arrested in Kandhar in Afghanistan, but he was physically apprehended in Quetta in Pakistan and was shipped to Kandhar for his formal surrender and arrest. Now another top Taliban General has been apprehended in Peshawar. How many more such rats are going to emerge from their holes in Pakistan is anybody's guess. The number also depends on to what extent Musharraf would like to impress his American hosts, before reaching Washington. But his hosts may want the entire lot out at one go, and not in installments. This could prove difficult for Musharraf to agree to, since it may cause a coup, if not a mutiny in the Pakistani Military. Sooner or later the USA would decide to make public its intelligence reports that point to the assemblage of Taliban and Al Qaeda inside Pakistan, and after this Musharraf would be on a sticky wicket - to arrest and deport all those the Americans say are in Pakistan or to find an alibi not to do so. The Americans are not Indians who would give a list of 20 and wait.

If Musharraf obliges the US, his future inside Pakistan would be in jeopardy due to the rage of the pro Al Qaeda generals in his military. If he dilly dallies as he has been doing with the Indians, since delivering his 'historic' speech on 12th January, the US would decide to act on its own and either bomb the concentrations of Al Qaeda and Taliban refugees in Pakistan, or it may take the more risky option of apprehending them with its own forces. But the second option is doubtful, going by the American experience with apprehending the Somalian warlord Mohammed Aideed. Increasing the number of US troops stationed in Pakistan is also not without risks. The experience in Beirut in Lebanon is an indicator of such risks. In this scenario, the only less risky proposal is to extend the bombing campaign that is now reaching a close in Afghanistan, into Pakistan - in a subtle manner.

It is this, that is going to be on the agenda when the Pakistani General is 'feted' in Washington. This is going to make-up contents of the 3rd Ultimatum that will be delivered to Musharraf; and what he does when he returns to Pakistan would decide the course of American response.

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Who is funding the anti-globalization, anti-war movements?

Has anyone wondered why the anti-globalization protests are turning more and more vociferous? What do the anti-war movement and the human rights movement have in common? They are all being financially supported by Islamic charities like Al Rasheed and the Rabita Trust. Anyone surprised?

Now with the 2nd phase of the war against terror waiting to unfold, the Jihadis are making a smart move of trying to use high moral ground to embarrass the anti-terror coalition, especially the United States. We need to give a hard look to the innocuous looking human rights, self-determination, anti-war, peace movements and anti-globalization protests.

Did you ever wonder who replaced the Soviets as paymasters of all these stage-managed protest movements. Shuffling protesters around the Globe in transcontinental flights, making arrangements for their lodging and boarding, and publishing costly propaganda material for their street-shows, is not coming cheap these days.

It is the sinister hand of petrodollars that gives the financial ability for these nefarious activities. The authorities in the US and the rest of the world need to investigate this matter thoroughly and tell everyone the true story. The real face and motivation of this innocent-looking seeming buffoonery should be revealed for what it really is - the new and unobtrusive front-organization of the Jihadis.

In this context, we should note one curious occurrence. While there were wild protests at Davos, Seattle, Genoa, and New York; there were none at Doha. Has anyone wondered why?

Corollary: A suicide bomber would readily go into his enemy's territory to detonate a bomb. But when his enemies assemble at his house, he would keep silent and play safe. Thus he can deflect suspicion from himself. Hence Doha (location for the only globalization meet in the middle east) was the only exception for the anti-globalization protestors.

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JEI's Rejoinder to George Bush 's State of the Union address to Congress and consequently Musharraf's changing of his colours once again

Not many of us would realize the implication of the startling revelation by the JEI (Jamaat-e-Islami) that 3 days prior to delivering his speech on 12th January, President Musharraf had a showdown with his Corps Commanders and he had threatened to resign over differences over his proposed policy shift vis-à-vis the Jihadi organisations that have been sponsored by the ISI (Inter Services Intelligence) - Pakistan's secret service. The compromise reached by General Musharraf to break this imbroglio was that the Corps Commanders recorded and edited the General's speech before it was telecast!

Why has the JEI decided to go public with this highly sensitive piece of news, now? Their action seems to be a rejoinder to President Bush's State of the Union address to Congress, where he lavished praise on Musharraf for his bold steps against the terrorists. The JEI has no reason to be happy with the General for what he is doing. Since they are being laid off from waging a Jihad in Kashmir, while getting nothing in return. They are trying to tell President Bush that in Pakistan, the General is not the unquestioned boss.

The JEI has in a declaration made at Peshawar on the 27th of January, said that they can overthrow the General any time they want to. The JEI's statement could have been dismissed as a hollow boast, but not any longer, in the light of the news about Musharraf's showdown with his Corps Commanders. The dichotomy between the General's mindset and that of his Corps Commanders, the Pakistani military and perhaps a majority of Pakistanis, is evident to many. But, everybody also knows that General Musharraf is the best bet against the Jihadis, and so does President Bush. This was evident when President Bush while stating that the US is building a new relationship with India (along with Russia and China), limited himself to praising Musharraf on a person-to-person level, in his State of the Union address to Congress. The Jihadis too know that the West's last hope in checkmating them is General Musharraf. And so to deliver an unmistakable message to the West they have decided to go public with the showdown which the General had with his Corps Commanders before delivering his speech on 12th January.

Musharraf has changed his colours once again in his speech on the Pakistan sponsored Kashmir Solidarity Day

Now on the Pakistan sponsored Kashmir Solidarity Day that is observed every year on the 5th of February, Pervez Musharraf slipped back into the familiar terminology of self-determination for Kashmiris. The terrorists become freedom fighters once again. And the tacit changing of tactics by the Mujahids who say that they will concentrate on Kashmir alone and not create mayhem in the rest of India are all moves to give a new lease of life to Islamic Jihad in Kashmir in a way that is not too blatant in international and American eyes. All this is being done so that they can carry on their virulent terrorist mayhem in Kashmir. We need to watch Pervez and his Jihadi gangs more closely than ever before.

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Can Musharraf unilaterally attack India anytime now due to Chinese maneuvering, and pressure from his Corps Commanders?

It is evident now that since the 12th January speech, General Musharraf has no gains to show to his countrymen. India has not de-mobilized, the talk with India on Kashmir is not happening. But inside Pakistan the moves against Madrassahs and the Jihadi organisations are on, albeit half-hearted. The Balance Sheet has nothing on the asset side. Now in the emerging scenario, Pakistan is imploring India to de-escalate and is promising that it will itself de-escalate.

Pakistan wants to move its army and military hardware back to their peace time locations so that they are suitably camouflaged from any attack (not necessarily from India), but if Pakistan moves its army back today, without India doing so, there is always the threat of an Indian attack. So Pakistan is today in a Catch 22 situation. Amidst all this India has test fired it Agni missile.

So today the mood of the average Pakistani is that of dejection due to being let down by his own President, and of humiliation of having to eat humble pie in face of his hoary enemy - India which refuses to discuss Kashmir, scornfully asks Pakistan to withdraw from POK, while audaciously test-fires a missile without drawing censure from the Americans and steadfastly refuses to de-escalate in face of repeated Pakistani imploring to do so.

In this scenario what can happen inside Pakistan? Can the Pakistani Military Corps Commanders give an ultimatum by to their General-in-Chief Musharraf, to drag India to discuss Kashmir to ultimately cede that province to Pakistan. Fat hope, readers would say. And a fat hope it is, since India did not budge on Kashmir while it has been under terrorists fire for the last decade; so why would it give away Kashmir at the negotiating table? Consequently General Musharraf would have nothing to show to his countrymen as a result of the volte face of 12th January. So it is a matter of time when the General faces another ultimatum from his Corps Commanders to let loose the Pakistani army against India. This would seem incredulous today. But this possibility is in the making!

Pakistan today had been caught in the Indo-American pincer. The Indians (and the Americans) want Musharraf to move against the Jihadis. The Americans, more than the Indians, are watching him deliver, or fail to deliver. The Pakistani common man wants a Jihad against India, he wants Kashmir. An American journalist Daniel Pearl of WSJ has been kidnapped with threats of more such kidnappings. This is symbolic of the mood in Pakistan. The Pakistani military top brass are having their nose rubbed in the ground, due to their General's volte face on the Taliban on the 6th of October and on Kashmir on the 12th of January. For Pakistanis, their joining the International Alliance against Terrorism has been like going to a wife swapping party and returning home alone! Now General Musharraf is really alone, metaphorically speaking. He has nothing to show to his countrymen and to his Corps Commanders. How long can he stay the course he is set upon? In the event of an anti-Musharraf military coup, the Americans may not have time enough to enter Pakistan in a big enough way to keep the General afloat. And so, to stay in power the General may be forced to abide by what his Corps Commanders dictate to him at gunpoint. Remember his sudden change in stance halfway through the talks at Agra after putting through a call to Islamabad? Musharraf can overrule everyone in Pakistan - except his Corps Commanders!

At this juncture today, his hand would be forced to wave the green flag - but no metaphor here. The green flag to give a go ahead to an unilateral Pakistani attack on India. The compulsions for this obviously being his own physical and professional survival. The question is, has the Pakistani military been preparing for this eventuality to achieve missile and non-conventional warhead parity or superiority over India? It seems so with the delivery of missile systems and warheads by China in December 2001.

The Chinese have their own goose to cook in promoting an Indo-Pak war. Through this war the Chinese would be emasculating India - their main rival in Asia and ensuring that Pakistan the main promoter of the unrest in Xinjiang is out of business - out of the Xinjiang business at least. The recent Chinese pronouncements against extending the war against terror to more countries stems from the knowledge that Pakistan is next on the target list of anti-terror operations. A possibility darkly hinted at by President George Bush in his State of the Union address to Congress. It is Pakistan where the next main theatre of war lies. Philippines, Somalia, Iraq are just diversions and minor distractions. When the war moves to Pakistan, bringing the American military there in its wake, the Chinese who are already perturbed at the American presence in Afghanistan, would have more reason to feel uncomfortable. The Chinese would entirely and permanently lose their clout with the Pakistanis after the Americans move in to takeover, as they did in Afghanistan. For the Chinese to obviate the Americans from moving into Pakistan, the best bet is an Indo-Pak war. So lies the logic of our seemingly incredulous prediction that in the face of Chinese maneuvering, when the Corps Commanders of the Pakistani Military put pressure on General Musharraf, he might unilaterally attack India in a final show of defiance.

We hope the Americans and Indians too are following such logic and preparing to pre-empt such an eventuality.

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The Kidnapping of Western Journalists - an ominous indication of things to come

Three months back we had spoken about the possibility of Western Journalists being the target of Jihadi kidnappers at a page we had created on this topic. We do not want to gloat over this and we are unhappy that our prediction has come true in the case of Daniel (Danny) Pearl the Wall Street Journal staffer. But talking about the future, we need to state here that the kidnapping of Danny by the National Movement for the Restoration of Pakistani Sovereignty, is going to be a watershed event.

Up to now kidnappings were made for monetary ransom or to secure the release of criminals under detention. But now the demands are for the delivery of F16s to Pakistan. Quite a interesting change in the nature of demands! The demand for release of Pakistani Al Qaeda prisoners is another notable demand using a Journalist as a piece of cheese to bend the will of the United States. These demands may not be accepted. But what may be accepted is that the unlawful combatants (read homicidal maniacs and zombie killers) being held at Camp X-Ray may be given POW status to save the life of Daniel Pearl, the kidnapped Wall Street Journal staffer, giving a boost for more such kidnappings. And that the cult of revenge kidnappings would target more such Journalists, and TV crews is easy to figure out.

Journalists go unprotected to all nooks and crannies in search of scoops. They are easy to lure and easy to kidnap. In their routine professional activity, Journalists, seek news, and in the context of the War on Terror, that involves interaction with Jihadi organizations. But with such kidnappings, this may soon become a thing of the past. Henceforth no sensible Journalist can take the risk of going without security cover to meet any Jihadi official. He/She cannot be at liberty to get into secretive activities in search of a scoop. We should also say that the claimed 'silent majority' of Pakistanis may be with President Musharraf, but the Jihadi elements (we do not know if they are really a minority among Pakistanis) would continue to hit soft and vulnerable targets with deadly effectiveness.

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How many Jihadi sympathizers lurk among the Pakistani Military, Police, Civil Service and the Government?

We do not know how many Jihadi sympathizers lurk among the Pakistani Military, Police, Civil Service and the Government. They may never come out openly to profess their sympathies and loyalty, but would continue to undermine the War Against Terror and harm all those who come their way. The first to be targeted would be the Western (and other anti-Jihadi) Journalists, TV Crews. Businessmen; the diplomats from non-Islamic countries being the next in line. To counter the hidden Jihadis, they would have to be drawn out of their facades, their clout would have to be gauged, their military capability and potential has to be drawn out in the open. We wonder if this is what is actually happening today with the Pakistani army in a state of mobilization, their missiles being pulled out of silos and readied for deployment along the Indian border.

A significant event is that while the Indian and Pakistani armies are eyeball-to-eyeball, the Agni missile is test fired by India, with no severe reaction against the firing from the Western World. This instinctively should prompt Pakistan to retaliate in kind, further exposing the locations of its missile delivery systems. What is curious is that Pakistan is holding back it normal tit-for-tat response and keeping the Shaheen, Hatf and Ghaznavi in cold storage. Does Pakistan fear that revealing too much at this stage could facilitate laser guided retaliation in the near future - when the War against Terror reaches Pakistani soil in the near future.

Is there more than meets the eye in the quiet acquiescence to India's test firing of a missile at this juncture when its army is in an eyeball confrontation with a hoary enemy. In the refusal of that enemy to return in kind, or even in words a threat of carrying out a retaliatory missile test. In the resumption of American arms sales to India (and not to Pakistan, while the Pakistani kidnappers demand the delivery as the F16s to Pakistan as a price for the life of the Wall Street staffer). In the assertive statement of India's Prime Minister that we can talk Kashmir after Pakistan return POK to India. In the CBS report that around the 11th of September Osama had undergone dialysis for his kidney in Rawalpindi. In the FBI's checking out the Saudia and PIA Haj bound flights originating from Pakistan, in their hunt for Al Qaeda suspects trying to slip off from Pakistan to Mecca. And above all in the statement of President Musharraf addressed to India, but intended to be a subtle message to the US, to not sit in judgement on the anti-Jihadi measures he is taking. Is there more than meets the eye in all these developments?

All these developments seem to have a link. In our reckoning the link lies in the preparation of the ground for an eventual strike to decapitate Pakistani missile delivery capability, at the beginning of the Phase 2 of the War against Terror that would be fought in Pakistan. And fought in Pakistan, because that is where most of those who matter from the Al Qaeda and Taliban have found refuge. If this Phase is delayed then the deadly crowd who should have been by now at Camp X-Ray at Guantanamo Bay, would succeed in slipping off to circumambulate the Kaaba at Mecca, out of the reach of International Law. The International Alliance against Terrorism needs to get its act going fast, if they are to trap their quarry who is till today in Pakistan.

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Is there a similarity in the fights of Charlie Chaplin and those of General Musharraf?

Many readers may say 'what a nonsensical question is this'. How can you compare the two. One was a comedian and the other is a leader of the frontline state in the War on Terror. But hang on. Do you remember the fights which Charlie indulged in to the delight of the audience? In those fights Charlie and his opponent hit out with aplomb at each other. The audience's delight came not from the fight itself, but from the fact that both Charlie and his opponent ducked in the nick of time so that the blow went and hit an unsuspecting yokel who was standing by the side. Just recollect these mock fights of Charlie Chaplin in his soundless movies. Charlie Chaplin was acting in these mock fights, and in fact even the unsuspecting yokel in his film who got hit unwittingly was not really hit. There was only an action of a mock hit, and the actor who was hit, pretended that he was hit - much to the delight of the audience.

Now look at the situation today. Like Charlie Chaplin and his opponent, India and Musharraf are trading punches - with both the Indian and Pakistani armies being massed at the borders. Now if we consider this mobilization to be like the mock blows of Chaplins films, the question is who is that unsuspecting yokel who is actually getting hit? Obviously the Jihadi organisations against whom the General delivered his speech on the 12th of January.

The next question now is that, the blows that Chaplin delivered at his opponent (like the moves of Indian and Pakistani armies of massing against each) were meant to hit an unsuspecting yokel (read, the Jihadi organisations). But the point was that, even that unsuspecting yokel who was seen to have got hit, was hit actually by a mock blow, not a real one!

Extending the similarity further to the situation today, are the blows with which General Musharraf is hitting the Jihadi organisations, also as mockingly unreal as those of Chaplin's? That’s anybody's guess.

Everyone knows that the scenario since the 7th of October, when the War against Terror actually began in a military way, is evolving in a very interesting way. First, a rebel force was pitted against a Jihadi government in Afghanistan. To make it clearer, the Northern Alliance was pitted against the Jihadi Taliban. And now a ruling clique is trading punches with its neighbor, for the blows to land on the Jihadi rebels. To make it clearer, the Indian and the Musharraf governments are trading punches for the blows to land on the Jaish, Laskhar, Tamir, etc. We have no complaints. Since all this is happening for the good, since it undermines the Jihadis.

But the only nagging question is; are the punches; that Musharraf is using the Indo-Pak military build up to deliver to the Jihadis; real punches? Or are they mock punches, like those in the Tramp's (Chaplin's) films. A question which the Americans will have to answer if they are to make any further real progress in the War Against Terror.

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General Musharraf why are you so desperate that India de-escalates?

Often times you have shaken your fist at India and have vowed that you will teach India a lesson, if Indians decide to attack Pakistan. So General Sir, why are you so keen that India de-escalates? General Sir, don't tell us that you are an apostle of peace. Since, you are the architect of Kargil. It was you who attacked India surreptitiously, before you had to withdraw at the orders from Blair House. Again you are a professional soldier whose honour lies in fighting; and above all you come from a community that glorifies swordplay for either converting or confronting Kafirs (a word you yourself used to describe non-Muslims in you speech on the 12th of January).

So General Sir, why are you so keen to avoid a war, when you yourself unleashed one at Kargil in 1999 and belong to a war mongering community that has ravaged the world from the year 632 A.D.? Is there something more than meets the eye in your fervent appeals asking India to de-escalate?

Maybe you have a hunch that in the event of an Indo-Pak war, the Americans to prevent a nuclear war, will have to step into Pakistan in a way as to effectively take over your country as they have done with your western neighbor, (albeit for slight different compulsions). And perhaps this is the reason why you moved in without notice to take charge of Jacobabad and other airfields that you had given to the Americans to be used for an indefinite period. This also explains your over-eagerness to pronounce Osama to be dead, so that the hunt for him does not bring the B52s over Pakistani skies and more so does not trample Pakistan under the boot-soles of American marines.

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After 9/11 and 13/12, what else are you waiting for General Musharraf

General Musharraf, you only respond to pressure. You responded to the pressure on you after 9/11 by jettisoning the Taliban, and now after 13/12 attack on the Indian parliament, and the call to arms by India, you have said that you will crack down on the Jihadis. Irrespective of whether you really want to do what you are doing, it is now certain that you respond only after pressure is built on you - after some catastrophic event.

Now General Sir, what event are you waiting for before you punish (not just apprehend) the thousands of Jihadis in Pakistan? Are you waiting for one of these desperadoes to try to assassinate you; or worse still are you waiting for a failed coup attempt before you start to act decisively against the Jihadis, if not by executing them then at least by offering to deport their leaders to the Hague, for crimes against Indian and for the assault on America. Don't tell us that the Jihadis in Pakistan are not guilty of any of these crimes. Everyone knows by now that the Islamic Jihad is seamless across organisations and across nations. The swamp that breeds Al Qeada, also breeds the Jaish, Sipah, Lashkar, Tamir, Hamas, Hezbollah, Abu Sayyaf, etc.

The finance for the Jihad may originate in Petrodollars, but these Petrodollars are siphoned off through Pakistan into hands as those like Mohammed Atta's The world now knows the underhand dealings of Pakistanis that lead up to the event of 9/11 and 13/12. If you overwrite all this, even then the slogans that the Jihadis shout out like "Mushar Gaddar Hai Hai" (Musharraf is a Traitor) Hindustan Murdabad" (Destroy India) and "Death to America" when they burn the effigies of President George Bush; prove their credentials, their mindset and what they would actually do if they have the opportunity to do that - in the same way as the very dangerous unlawful combatants detained at Guantanamo Bay would want to kill Americans if they could.

So General Sir, what are you now waiting for before you actually punish or deport the leaders of these Jihadis?

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The Hidden Message in President Musharraf's Speech

The Hidden Message in President Musharraf's Speech - "If we want to strengthen Islam, then we will have to strengthen Pakistan."

We compliment President Musharraf on cracking down on terrorists, making the building on new mosques subject to a governmental NOC, declaring a policy to regulate the syllabus of the Madarassas. We hope such measures are reciprocated by the rest of the world too where religion and politics are being mixed - as in India for instance by the VHP, Bajrang Dal in their campaign to construct a Hindu temple to their god Ram at Ayodhya.

But many of us who are applauding President Musharra today for cracking down on terrorists have missed the fine print in his speech where he has said; "Pakistan Islam ka Killa Hai." "Pakistan is the bastion of Islam." And "Agar Islam koh Mazboot banana hai, toh hame Pakistan koh mazboot banana chahiye." "If we want to strengthen Islam, then we will have to strengthen Pakistan." "Gaye kuch saalon mein hamene, zyada Musalmaanon koh Kafir banaya hian, aur kam Kafiron koh Musalmaan." "In the last few year we have converted more Muslims into Kafirs (non-Muslims) and less Kafirs into Muslims." All these phrases are extracted from the President's address. The entire International media has missed the impact of these statements that are hidden in a mass of messages that otherwise seem to be calling for a Muslim Reformation.

But we can ignore the implications of these thoughts of President Musharraf only at our peril. Had President Bush said that "America is the bastion of Christianity." And "If we want to strengthen Christianity, then we ought to strengthen America." And further that "In the last few years we have converted more Christians into pagans and less pagans into Christians." If President had said something like this in an address to the American nation, then how would the global media would have reacted. Their reaction to his singular use of the word "Crusade" is one example of the kind of reaction we could have expected. Even a more direct statement by the Italian Prime Minister that Christian civilization is superior to the Islamic one drew sharp retorts from the media. Then how is it that the media is totally silent now?

And is it that President Musharraf wants to strengthen Islam in due course? This is what Osama Bin Laden also wants! What has been the track record of Islam in the last 14 centuries and what could be the implication of strengthening Islam for the future? Why does President Musharraf have to refer to non-Muslims using the derogatory term "Kafir" (Infidel)? And does he want more non-Muslims to be converted to being Muslims? Why does he look upon Pakistan to be bastion of Islam and why does he want to strengthen Islam by strengthening Pakistan? All this is very disturbing for the future, if President Musharraf is allowed to realize his dream, since it does not seem far removed from Osama's world view! The hidden message in President Musharraf 's speech deserves to be taken note of.

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A logical reversal of President Musharraf's message

A logical reversal of President Musharraf's message - If we have to counter Islam then we have to counter Pakistan, "the bastion of Islam"

If the aim of the international Coalition against Terror is to counter Islamic Terrorism, then by extension we have to counter Islam and Pakistan - which is the bastion of Islam, in President Musharraf's words. This bastion was the birthplace of the Taliban, Al Qaeda, Jaish, Lashkar, Ummah-Tamir-e-Nau and many other expressions of contemporary Islamic Terrorism.

Over the last few decades, Pakistan's closest and most consistent ally has been China. With Pakistan today facing international pressure to crack down on terrorists, it is the Chinese who have supplied fighter planes to Pakistan. We need to take note of the possibility that in a future scenario where the Islamic world gets polarized militarily against the West; then Pakistan could be the conduit through which China could ally itself with the Islamic world against the West. This possibility today would appear remote, but is a distinct one given the distrust which the Chinese have for the West, and the fair-weather friendship that they have demonstrated with Pakistan.

While China itself has to fear from the Muslim terrorist movement in Xinjiang, if that movement is held back by pressure from Pakistan, then the Chinese could be swung against the West. Even during his recent visit to China, President Musharraf was asked by the Chinese to help them to overcome unrest in Xinjiang - a province which the Muslims refer to as Eastern Turkestan. And significantly President Musharraf used the same term to refer to that disturbed province. But this fact seems to have escaped the attention of the Chinese, as has the message in President Musharraf's speech, for strengthening Islam by strengthening Pakistan, seems to have escaped the notice of the West and the international community.

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The Lesson for China, if Kashmir flares up

China needs to think twice when they supply fighter aircrafts to the Pakis. They are repeating the mistake that the Americans did when they supplied Stinger missile to the Mujahideen which were used by the Jihadis against the Americans in the recent war. Do the Chinese want their own aircrafts to be used against them, by a future hardline Jihadi regime in Pakistan after the Musharraf regime falls?

Again at a more fundamental level, in the remote possibility of Kashmir becoming an independent Islamic Republic, China would be the first to face the brunt of Islamic terrorism. Till the overthrow of the Taliban, the Jihadis could seamlessly move from Afghanistan into Kashmir and on to Kashghar (in Xinjiang). Now with the Taliban pushed under the carpet, the Jihadis are surreptitiously moving into Kashmir. And now if Kashmir is made into an independent Islamic republic, as Pakistan today wants, then the next logical target for the Jihadis would be Xinjiang or Eastern Turkestan, as they prefer to call it. In that scenario, China would have its hands bloodied fighting the Islamic Jihad. History has been evidence to the fact that the Islamic Jihad which moved like a hot knife through butter in its truculent march from Mecca to Poitiers (or Tours in France) in the West to Sindh (India) in the East; was halted at India. The Jihad had been turned back from France by Charles Martel and it had been fought to a standstill in India in a struggle spread over one thousand years. But if the Jihad had overrun India, then the next logical target for the Jihadis would have been India neighbor - China. In fact China did have a brush with the Jihad, when they were defeated by the Arab Muslims in the battle on the Talas river in the 8th century. But since then the efforts of the Jihadis have been trapped in the Indian struggle against Islam. And so China was saved the trouble from this death struggle against Islam But now if the Jihadis succeed in Kashmir then of course the force of events will make Xinjiang the next battleground for the Jihad. We hope the Chinese realize this.

Decoding an encrypted message, gave us a revealing insight into what some Retired Pakistani Army officers think of American efforts to help defuse the current Indo-Pak tensions. They say that America is not trying to prevent an India-Pakistan war. But the Americans are in fact trying to avoid the necessity of they themselves having to take over charge in Pakistan in a messy operation that might become necessary if the Musharraf regime is overthrown and a hardline Jihadi general seizes power in Pakistan subsequent to or even during an India-Pakistan war. This set us thinking if there could be more to the feverish American efforts to twist Musharraf's arms to oblige India in way that can lead to anything short of an India-Pakistan war. And if the war does break out leading to replacement of Musharraf by a hardline Jihadi general, then the American may have to put in motion their own "Operation Takeover" in Pakistan - starting off the Pakistani chapter of the War against Terror. In saying this, we think we are quite close to the mark as far as reading the American strategy for India-Pakistan peace moves is concerned.

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With Terrorism being worsted by the West how can the Jihadis strike now?"

It quite possible that to deliver shocks to an already shaken world, the Jihadis can be expected to do something unprecedented. But what exactly will they do? They may try to hit the West with Dirty Bombs smuggled in through the sea shore. They may try to engineer coups and unrest in Muslim countries - Pakistan being a prime candidate for such a move, since Osama Bin Laden is hiding there. In the non-Muslim countries where they have no connections in the military, they may try to seize radio and TV transmission stations in any part of the globe and announce that they have taken over that country.

This way they can cause a crisis of confidence in that country and in the global community at least for a few hours and show that these countries can be brought at their mercy of the Jihadis. Authorities across the globe. For countries like India especially have to be on their guard and increase the security around the Radio, TV and other mass communication broadcasting facilities and other sensitive targets.

Random Suggestions for an Indo-Pak Entente - A Hotline from N.Delhi to Islamabad

With the two armies in an 'eyeball to eyeball' state along the border, any mischance could lead to an accidental start of hostilities. So a hotline connecting the offices and residences of the two heads of state in India (Vajpayee) and Pakistan (Musharraf) would be a safety valve to put out any accidental fire that might erupt. A similar hotline connecting the offices and residences of the two Defence Ministers in India (George Fernandes) and Pakistan (Musharraf); as also one connecting the two Army chiefs in India (Padmanabhan) and Pakistan (Musharraf), as also one connecting the two Presidents in India (K.R.Natayanan) and Pakistan (Musharraf) would be ideal. Anyway we guess Musharraf would have no grudge about such multiple connections!

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Suggestions for De-escalation along the Indo-Pak border

Now that the two armies are concentrated along the border, they can serve an unusual useful purpose of sealing off the flow of militants from Pakistan, as the Pakistani army is in fact doing along the Afghan border. The Pakistani Rangers can if they so desire join hands with the Indian BSF (Border Security Force) to do this job. It is an open question as to how many in the Pakistan military are in their hearts loyal to their President's declared anti-terrorist initiative or they secretly harbour Jihadi tendencies.

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An outlandish Suggestion

With civil unrest, political assassinations, coup attempts that are ready to erupt in Pakistan any day; another outlandish, but logically and strategically necessary role for the Indian army could be to help to shore up the pro-Musharraf faction in the event of any such eventuality. For doing this, its continued deployment along the border would give it logistical convenience to co-ordinate moves with the pro-Musharraf forces in any joint operations that might become necessary.

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Kashmir flows in your blood

A word to the President of Pakistan. You have said that " Kashmir flows in your blood", but we need to tell you that our blood has been flowing in Kashmir due to the Jihadis whom your country has backed for the last many decades. If your change of heart is real, and you expect empathy from India, then you need to look at the situation with empathy for Indians, and for us, blood and Kashmir have a relationship inverse to what your have stated.

"How Osama Could escape out of Pakistan"

Osama could disguise himself as a Western businessman by shaving off his beard and sporting a business suit. This is what quite a few folks are saying. But this is a very logical prediction. Osama believe in doing the least expected. Has it crossed the mind of anyone that he might use the Haj pilgrimage season to simply join the Hajis and board one of the ships bound for Haj. This way he would have a readymade company of sympathizers who could lay their lives down for him, in the event of his dhow (Arab sailing vessel) being apprehended by one of the American warships in the Gulf.

Along with the Hajis he would also reach Mecca - an area where non- Muslims are not allowed and where the writ of the Saudi police also does not run, since it comes under the jurisdiction of the religious police (the Muttawah). By placing himself in the vicinity of the Kaaba - the heart of Muslim religious identity, he would make it all the more difficult for anyone to reach him, without causing a conflagration. And it is conflagration which is what he in fact wants. So it is quite plausible that from Pakistan, he might try to slink away to Saudi Arabia along with the Hajjis. The US better keep track of him on these lines.

Treatment of the Unlawful Combatants at Guantanamo Bay

Those who are raising a hue and cry about the treatment of Unlawful Combatants at Guantanamo Bay should ask themselves the question about the crimes that these Unlawful Combatants have committed in Afghanistan and what some of their compatriots committed in the US on 9/11. These Unlawful Combatants should certainly be disabled in a way that they and their types are never a threat to civilization. A humane way would be brain-wash them, and then re-educate them.

If that is not possible then life-long captivity is the only way out, a Nuremberg like trial for their leaders would be acceptable. But in no circumstances should they be allowed to cause the rampage that they are bound to cause if they are ever let loose. That would be a miscarriage of justice and prudence.


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