Archive for the ‘Pakistan’ Category

Bin Laden supposedly had no internet, but kept p*rn in his house

Friday, May 13th, 2011

Where there’s a will, there’s a way,
Exclusive: Pornography found in bin Laden hideout: officials

A stash of pornography was found in the hideout of Osama bin Laden by the U.S. commandos who killed him, current and former U.S. officials said on Friday.

The pornography recovered in bin Laden’s compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, consists of modern, electronically recorded video and is fairly extensive, according to the officials, who discussed the discovery with Reuters on condition of anonymity.

The officials said they were not yet sure precisely where in the compound the pornography was discovered or who had been viewing it. Specifically, the officials said they did not know if bin Laden himself had acquired or viewed the materials.

Reports from Abbottabad have said that bin Laden’s compound was cut off from the Internet or other hard-wired communications networks. It is unclear how compound residents would have acquired the pornography.

Wouldn’t it be ironic if the couriers that were been tracked were the ones who did the shopping?

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Bin Laden dead, and buried at sea

Monday, May 2nd, 2011

Osama bin Laden Killed: ‘Justice Is Done,’ President Says

Osama bin Laden, hunted as the mastermind behind the worst terrorist attack on U.S. soil, has been killed, President Obama announced tonight.

The president called the killing of bin Laden the “most significant achievement to date” in the effort to defeat al Qaeda.

“Justice has been done,” Obama said.

Bin Laden was located at a compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, which was monitored and when the time was determined to be right, the president said, he authorized a “targeted operation.”

President Obama’s speech,

Richard Fernadez asks,

The location of Bin Laden’s hide-out and the use of a U.S. raiding team on settled Pakistani territory raises a number of questions. First, has Pakistan been hiding Osama Bin Laden all along? Second, did the U.S. independently discover the location of Bin Laden? Third, was the information shared by some elements of Pakistani intelligence, assuming that his location was known to them, in exchange from some quid pro quo which has not yet been revealed? Or was the discovery of Bin Laden simultaneous, the result of the mutual and cooperative investigation of the ISI and U.S. intelligence?

If highly placed persons in Pakistan have been instrumental in hiding Bin Laden these ten years, it suggests that some of the real masterminds of September 11, far from lying dead, are still at large.

The chances that Pakistan was wholly innocent were somewhat thrown into doubt by the possible location of the safe house. “President Barack Obama announced that Osama bin Laden had been killed in Abbottabad.” What must have been the raid was reported on Pakistani media, putting Osama’s safe house very close to the Pakistani Military Academy

Crowd celebrates Bin Laden’s death for hours outside the White House (h/t Instapundit)

The body of Osama bin Laden has been buried at sea after he was killed by US covert forces in Pakistan.

Burying bin Laden’s body at sea would ensure that his final resting place does not become a shrine and a place of pilgrimage for his followers.

Michael Yon doesn’t think that was a good idea. Expect conspiracy theories to flourish, too.

Huge string of articles and posts at Memeorandum

UPDATE:
A guy in Pakistan live-tweeted the raid.

More photos and video at FreedomTorch.

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Oprah, Agroisleña, Rahm, Pundita, and trouble

Tuesday, October 5th, 2010

How Oprah Winfrey Can Get Her Brand Back

Please, Oprah, don’t send me a car. Just less Marianne Williamson and more Halima Bashir.

Michael Moynihan says this article by Richard Cohen is The Worst Column of the Year. I think Michael’s an optimist; the year is not over yet, by a long shot, and elections always are a fountain of poor writing, faulty logic and senseless rhetoric.

My friend John Hawkins made more friends at the Smart Girl Summit, The 2010 Smart Girl Summit In Pictures (42 Pics)

Good-bye, Agroisleña: Defiant Chavez orders land takeover of British food giant

Since 1999, when Chavez took office, the government has taken over some 2.5 million hectares (6.2 million acres) of land

More on Geert Wilders:Tear Down This Wall!

You can’t make this up: Rahm Emanuel: Experts say not a legal resident of Chicago, cannot run for mayor, so of course he has a video titled “Glad to be home”…which was made in Washington, DC. There is no “there” here.

On Pakistan and the US: Pundita explains reality to Rachel Maddow and the Pakistanis to Gen. Petraeus, Part 1

Washington defense policymakers are the only people on Earth who whap themselves on the back of the head then yelp, ‘Who hit me?’ So before strategy must come the ability to chew and walk.

Go read every word.

How Much Trouble Are We In? This much trouble:

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Cuban riot police quash Pakistani student protest VIDEO; updated with podcast

Thursday, September 9th, 2010

At the Latin American School of Medicine in Jaguey Grande, Pakistani Muslim students protested and went on strike over their living conditions for the second time this year. The newly-formed riot police in full gear and assault rifles with bayonets repressed the protest:

Cuban Riot Police quash protest at university

The Pakistani students have been protesting over the inferior education they are receiving from the Cuban government and the lack of hospital facilities at the university. The students feel that the quality of education they are being provided in Cuba is not sufficient for them to be able to pass the exams required to be licensed physicians back home in Pakistan.

So much for the excellent Cuban healthcare.

UPDATE
Val Prieto of Babalu joined me in this morning’s podcast; you can listen to it here.

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The Afghan war document dump UPDATED

Monday, July 26th, 2010

Wikileaks has the Afghan War Diary, 2004-2010,

an extraordinary compendium of over 91,000 reports covering the war in Afghanistan from 2004 to 2010.

The Wikileaks link doesn’t seem to work all the time, so here’s the NYTimes,

The reports — usually spare summaries but sometimes detailed narratives — shed light on some elements of the war that have been largely hidden from the public eye:

• The Taliban have used portable heat-seeking missiles against allied aircraft, a fact that has not been publicly disclosed by the military. This type of weapon helped the Afghan mujahedeen defeat the Soviet occupation in the 1980s.

• Secret commando units like Task Force 373 — a classified group of Army and Navy special operatives — work from a “capture/kill list” of about 70 top insurgent commanders. These missions, which have been stepped up under the Obama administration, claim notable successes, but have sometimes gone wrong, killing civilians and stoking Afghan resentment.

• The military employs more and more drone aircraft to survey the battlefield and strike targets in Afghanistan, although their performance is less impressive than officially portrayed. Some crash or collide, forcing American troops to undertake risky retrieval missions before the Taliban can claim the drone’s weaponry.

• The Central Intelligence Agency has expanded paramilitary operations inside Afghanistan. The units launch ambushes, order airstrikes and conduct night raids. From 2001 to 2008, the C.I.A. paid the budget of Afghanistan’s spy agency and ran it as a virtual subsidiary.

There’s also evidence that Pakistan’s military spy service has guided the Afghan insurgency with a hidden hand, even as Pakistan receives more than $1 billion a year from Washington for its help combating the militants (or as Stacy puts it,

The White House has denounced the leaks as “irresponsible,” but what about the facts revealed? For $1 billion a year, we’re paying for Pakistan’s ISI intelligence agency to help kill our troops in Afghanistan.)

and that Iran is giving weapons, training and funds to the Taliban.

I was listening to John Batchelor last night while driving home, who compared these documents with the Pentagon Papers from the 1960s. Doug Mataconis is wondering about that, too.

But, haven’t we heard about these during the past years? Haven’t we read about all of this – or at least most of it – at Long War Journal?

Ed Morrissey drives the point home,

Like many, I prepared myself to read through the reports on the Wikileaks’ massive document dump from the classified military files of the Af-Pak theater, expecting to find something exotic and new.  Like many today, I suspect, I’m underwhelmed by the reality.  The Washington Post reports that the main takeaways are that Pakistan’s intel forces continued their contacts and support of the Taliban, that the war effort was underresourced, and that the Taliban had heat-seeking missiles that could attack our helicopters … which the US provided Afghan fighters during the Soviet occupation.

In short, it’s the Long War Journal, only less detailed

I’ll be reading through the documents and will post more on this story; while the documents per se may not be as scandalous as the Pentagon Papers, we shouldn’t be surprised if the Obama administration a. blames Bush as it always does, and b. uses them as a pretext for pulling out of Afghanistan.

UPDATE
Wikileaks Hath Spoken
Now Step Aside Or Get Stampeded By Journalists Seeking Pulitzers

When Wikileaks becomes an equal opportunity leaker and starts thumbing its nose at Vlad Putin, for instance, then maybe we’ll talk. The thing is, journalists and intelligence folks who run afoul of Vlad have a strange habit of getting dead. (One would think there would be a story to be leaked in there somewhere to the industrious folks at Wikileaks.)

But stand clear. There’s a Pulitzer at stake, and it’s being pulled violently by teams in New York, London and Berlin.

ShrinkWrapped believes the war is over; I agree up to a point – what if the Wikileaks was timed in order to preempt Petraeus from extending the US troops stay in Afghanistan, when, prior to Petraeus taking his post, was scheduled for July next year?

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Due to personal business that needs to be attended this morning, there will be no podcast today and the Carnival of Latin America will be posted in the afternoon.
Thank you for your patience and support.

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Pakistani charged in Chile for explosives, not terror

Sunday, May 16th, 2010

X Muhammad Saif-Ur-Rehman Khan, the Pakistani who showed up at the American embassy in Santiago with traces of explosives, has been charged and released by a judge, in spite of the government’s intent to keep him in custody:
Pakistani charged in Chile for explosives, not terror

A Pakistani who was charged with illegal explosives possession was set free pending the investigation, but may not leave Chile and must check in with a judge every two weeks, a court source said.

Mauhannas Saif ur Rehnab, 28, had been detained since Monday under terms of Chile’s anti-terror law after officials detected traces of TNT on him when he visited the US embassy in Santiago.

On Saturday however he was not charged with violating the anti-terrorism law.

“He was charged with illegal possession of explosives, but not with breaking the anti-terror law,” a court source told AFP.

Then “he was released, but while the investigation is under way, ahead of a final ruling, he must appear before a judge to sign in every two weeks, and he may not leave the country,” the source added.

The Left spoke out on his support,

Rehnab’s fate has stirred controversy in Chile, with leftist opposition members complaining that he had been held without charge, although under the provisions of the anti-terror law this is legal.

The government did not want his release:

“We would have liked to see this person remain in preventive detention,” said Interior Minister Rodrigo Hinzpeter. “We don’t believe that his checking in and not leaving the country is sufficient, so we do expect that public prosecutors will appeal.”

And now his parents are coming,

Opposition lawmaker Alejandro Navarro said he had learned from the interior ministry that the suspect’s parents would receive visas and would arrive in Chile on Monday.

What could go wrong?

Pakistani charged in Chile for explosives, not terror

Sunday, May 16th, 2010

X Muhammad Saif-Ur-Rehman Khan, the Pakistani who showed up at the American embassy in Santiago with traces of explosives, has been charged and released by a judge, in spite of the government’s intent to keep him in custody:
Pakistani charged in Chile for explosives, not terror

A Pakistani who was charged with illegal explosives possession was set free pending the investigation, but may not leave Chile and must check in with a judge every two weeks, a court source said.

Mauhannas Saif ur Rehnab, 28, had been detained since Monday under terms of Chile’s anti-terror law after officials detected traces of TNT on him when he visited the US embassy in Santiago.

On Saturday however he was not charged with violating the anti-terrorism law.

“He was charged with illegal possession of explosives, but not with breaking the anti-terror law,” a court source told AFP.

Then “he was released, but while the investigation is under way, ahead of a final ruling, he must appear before a judge to sign in every two weeks, and he may not leave the country,” the source added.

The Left spoke out on his support,

Rehnab’s fate has stirred controversy in Chile, with leftist opposition members complaining that he had been held without charge, although under the provisions of the anti-terror law this is legal.

The government did not want his release:

“We would have liked to see this person remain in preventive detention,” said Interior Minister Rodrigo Hinzpeter. “We don’t believe that his checking in and not leaving the country is sufficient, so we do expect that public prosecutors will appeal.”

And now his parents are coming,

Opposition lawmaker Alejandro Navarro said he had learned from the interior ministry that the suspect’s parents would receive visas and would arrive in Chile on Monday.

What could go wrong?

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Chile: Pakistani found with traces of explosives at US Embassy

Wednesday, May 12th, 2010

Another guy on the terror list gets frisky,
Pakistani Man Found with Explosives on Hands at U.S. Embassy in Chile
Sources Say Man Was Recently Added to U.S. Terror Watch List
(h/t Gates of Vienna)

A Pakistani man was detained at the U.S. Embassy in Chile yesterday after field tests detected explosive residue on his hands and personal items, the State Department said today.

A U.S. official tells ABC News the man had been recently added to a U.S. terror watch list, and as a result his U.S. visa was in the process of being revoked. In accordance with U.S. law, the man had been notified of the intention to revoke his U.S. visa and he was at the embassy to discuss the matter.

The State Department identified the man as Muhammad Saif-Ur-Rehman Khan, age 27. Spokesman P.J. Crowley would only say the man came to the embassy for a “consular issue.” He said the U.S. had recently obtained information about the individual and had called him to the embassy to clarify, though he declined to provide specifics.

Another news report states his name as Mohamed Said Uf Rejaman

Rehman/Rejaman/Kahn is being held by Chilean authorities at a maximum-security prison under Chile’s anti-terrorism law:

A police source said the explosive was Tetryl, a compound used as a booster to help detonate explosive charges, adding the traces were found on his documents and mobile telephone.

A senior State Department official said Khan, a 28-year-old student who had been in Chile for four months, was invited to the embassy to be told his visa for the United States was being revoked.

Of course Kahn took the opportunity to criticize the USA,

“They (the United States) just want to cover up their shame and guilt for what they have done or are doing in Iraq and Afghanistan,” he said. “I have nothing to do with any chemicals. I have never seen anything like this in my life.”

Sound familiar?

This is the subject of today’s podcast at 11AM Eastern.

Chile: Pakistani found with traces of explosives at US Embassy

Wednesday, May 12th, 2010

Another guy on the terror list gets frisky,
Pakistani Man Found with Explosives on Hands at U.S. Embassy in Chile
Sources Say Man Was Recently Added to U.S. Terror Watch List
(h/t Gates of Vienna)

A Pakistani man was detained at the U.S. Embassy in Chile yesterday after field tests detected explosive residue on his hands and personal items, the State Department said today.

A U.S. official tells ABC News the man had been recently added to a U.S. terror watch list, and as a result his U.S. visa was in the process of being revoked. In accordance with U.S. law, the man had been notified of the intention to revoke his U.S. visa and he was at the embassy to discuss the matter.

The State Department identified the man as Muhammad Saif-Ur-Rehman Khan, age 27. Spokesman P.J. Crowley would only say the man came to the embassy for a “consular issue.” He said the U.S. had recently obtained information about the individual and had called him to the embassy to clarify, though he declined to provide specifics.

Another news report states his name as Mohamed Said Uf Rejaman

Rehman/Rejaman/Kahn is being held by Chilean authorities at a maximum-security prison under Chile’s anti-terrorism law:

A police source said the explosive was Tetryl, a compound used as a booster to help detonate explosive charges, adding the traces were found on his documents and mobile telephone.

A senior State Department official said Khan, a 28-year-old student who had been in Chile for four months, was invited to the embassy to be told his visa for the United States was being revoked.

Of course Kahn took the opportunity to criticize the USA,

“They (the United States) just want to cover up their shame and guilt for what they have done or are doing in Iraq and Afghanistan,” he said. “I have nothing to do with any chemicals. I have never seen anything like this in my life.”

Sound familiar?

This is the subject of today’s podcast at 11AM Eastern.

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Shahzad on Homeland Security list since 1999; VIDEO

Thursday, May 6th, 2010

Yes, siree, the Times Square bomber who was pulled out of the plane that would have taken him out of the country after his terror attack had been on the Homeland Security list since before the second WTC attack:
Faisal Shahzad on Homeland Security List Since 1999

Sources tell CBS News that would-be Times Square bomber Faisal Shahzad appeared on a Department of Homeland Security travel lookout list – Traveler Enforcement Compliance System (TECS) – between 1999 and 2008 because he brought approximately $80,000 cash or cash instruments into the United States.

TECS is a major law enforcement computer system that allows its approximately 120,000 users from 20 federal agencies to share information. The database is designed to identify individuals suspected of or involved in violation of federal law.

He could buy a one-way airline ticket for cash and get on the plane to Dubai but you and I can’t even wear a belt through the metal detector at the gate.

And… the anything-but-a-radical-Islamist-terrorist dude was Taliban-trained:
Suspect’s Ties to Pakistan Taliban Probed
Islamabad Official Claims Shahzad Received Instructions From Suicide-Bomber Trainer; Group Has Been Targeted by CIA Drones

Pakistani investigators also are probing Mr. Shahzad’s possible connections with Jaish-e-Muhammad, an outlawed Islamist militant group, after the arrest Tuesday of Tohaid Ahmed and Mohammed Rehan in Karachi. A senior Pakistani government official said the two men were believed to have links to Jaish. Mr. Ahmed had been in email contact with Mr. Shahzad; Mr. Rehan took Mr. Shahzad to South Waziristan, the official said.

There, Mr. Shahzad received training in explosives in a camp run by Qari Hussain, the official said. Mr. Hussain is a senior commander with Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan, the Pakistan Taliban’s formal name, and trains suicide bombers, the official said. Mr. Hussain is also a cousin of Hakimullah Mehsud, the Pakistan Taliban’s chief. The 30-year-old Mr. Shahzad has admitted to investigators that he received training from militants in Waziristan, U.S. officials said.

Jawa has the video of Faisal on Times Square during a prior visit,


Watch CBS News Videos Online

In lighter news, maybe the authorities were following him on Twitter!

UPDATE
James Joyner doesn’t know whether to laugh or cry,

The interesting question to me is: Which would be worse?

That is, would it be better if our ridiculously expensive and cumbersome Homeland Security apparatus wasn’t monitoring Shahzad, despite his being a Pakistani national or the right age set constantly traveling back to his homeland? Or that they’d been following him for eleven years but didn’t catch him until well after he finished his plot, avoiding disaster only through his incompetence?