Friday, October 29, 2010

It’s Time to Learn Who the Turis Are

Welcome to the Sectarian Republic of Pakistan. For a lot of people this is old news, but in the Kurram Agency of FATA, the Turi and Bangash tribes had a long standing feud running. When the Taliban-Al-Qaeda nexus entered FATA, and decided it was time to establish a khilafat, they sided with the Bangash tribe, simply because their opponents, the Turi, were Shia. Fast forward five years of killing later, and the Express Tribune has the news of another round of bloodletting about to begin. Try and read this article and list everything that’s wrong with this situation. My (incredulous) comments are in bold.

Averting a Doomsday Scenario

Taliban led by Mullah Toofan are allegedly planning coordinated attacks on the Shia community in Kurram.


ISLAMABAD: All key players in Pakistan’s tribal regions are maneuvering to avert what can be the bloodiest-ever sectarian conflict between the Taliban-supported Sunnis and the ‘besieged’ Shia community in Kurram Agency, officials and locals said.

Why have we reached the point where there is an armed “conflict” between tribal sectarian rivals.

The North Waziristan-based Haqqani network, top military officials and religious leaders from across Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa are trying hard to convince Taliban commanders from neighbouring Orakzai Agency to reconcile with the Shias in Parachinar, the main town in Kurram Agency.

Why aren’t they trying to convince the Taliban by killing them? Why the talk-talk?

Thousands of Orakzai-based Taliban, led by Maulana Noor Jamal, or Mullah Toofan, are allegedly planning coordinated attacks on the Shia community in Kurram to avenge the eviction of over 1,000 Sunni families by them two years ago.

Why is this Taliban leader alive? Why is his force concentrated and intact?

Kurram is the only Shia-dominated tribal area where the Taliban are now holding sway. It is a strategically important region because it borders Afghanistan and some important tribal regions.

OK, the Taliban hold sway. Then why do they have to attack the Turis? Either you hold sway or you don’t.

Residents from Parachinar told The Express Tribune that the Shia community has requested Maulana Sirajuddin Haqqani, who supervises the Haqqani network operations in North Waziristan, to mediate between them and Mullah Toofan’s commanders.

There was an earlier BBC article where they said that the Turi’s were actually resisting the Haqqani’s demand to move through Turi territory. Is Mullah Toofan some sort of weird threat to attack so that the Turis cave in to the Haqqanis?

Toofan is a nominee of Hakimullah Mehsud, the outlawed Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) commander, for Orakzai and is notorious for his brutalities against those who oppose his rule in northern parts of the agency.

We know. Anybody associated with the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan is a lunatic.

The Pakistan military has time and again claimed to have cleared the agency of militants but local residents contradict this claim. The entire Upper Orakzai is controlled by Mullah Toofan and Commander Tariq Afridi, a militant leader who once controlled the semi-tribal Dara Adamkhel area before his men were chased out by the military.

If we chased Tariq Afridi out of Darra Adamkhel, can’t we chase him and Mullah Noor Jamal (Toofan) out of Upper Orakzai. Or is the military incompetent?

The pair have their base-camp in a seminary in the Arghanja area of Dabori sub-district.

I have no fucking clue where that is and I personally don’t care. But if it’s legally defined as being in Pakistan, I do not want bloodshed there (that coming from a guy from Karachi).

“It is a facility similar to the one Maulana Fazlullah (Mullah Radio) had in Swat. It is their nerve centre,” a local source told The Express Tribune.

Whoop-de-doo. Flatten the damn place, but only when all the cockroaches are there all at once.

“It is from the Taliban network in Orakzai that the most serious threat to the Shias in Kurram emanates from,” said a Peshawar-based official.

So we’ve been fighting (or pretending to fight) for two years, and you Pakistan Army people still haven’t eliminated the bastards? And I don’t think it’s cause of what Indian whiners say that the Pakistan military is “saving” the Taliban, it’s just that they haven’t drawn up lists of the Talibs that have to be hunted and killed.

This was the reason the Shias from Kurram sought mediation from the Haqqanis, added a former parliamentarian from Kohat who has good terms with the Taliban. “They went there and asked Haqqani to get involved,” the former lawmaker explained, contradicting earlier media reports.

Last week, some leading newspapers reported that the Haqqani network wanted to seize control of the region to mount operations inside Afghanistan’s eastern provinces.

But the lawmaker denied these reports.

The lawmaker lies. I am sure the Haqqanis want access and they would gladly want the Turis dead. Why because these are the Haqqanis we are talking about. I wouldn’t trust those bastards with a baby bottle, let alone a stretch of territory. And the fact that Pakistani intelligence continues to “trust” these buggers, especially to install them in a “future” Afghanistan, speaks volumes on the stupidity of the Pakistani intelligence analyst teams. Oh, and the report they reference is this one from the BBC.

He was part of a delegation the Pakistani military sent last week to convince the Shias to let the ousted Sunnis families return home in Parachinar.

Does the Pakistan military do everything, like intelligence, diplomacy, internal political dealing, everything except fighting? God.

“The Shia community approached Haqqani with Rs200 million cash and 2,000 sheep,” the former lawmaker revealed, referring to a Pakhtun tradition of offering sheep to seek reconciliation, known as ‘nanavatey’.

The Turi are in trouble if they’re offering “peace” deals with the Haqqanis.

Another Peshawar-based official also confirmed that Shia community leaders from Kurram went to North Waziristan to seek support from the Haqqanis but it was to protect them against cross-border attacks from international forces based in Afghanistan.

Last month five people, among them three paramilitary troops, were killed in attacks by Nato helicopter gunships in Kurram.

The official said that before meeting Haqqani, a Shia delegation also visited Afghanistan to meet Nato officials but could not get an assurance that their region would not be attacked again.

“That’s why they sought the Haqqanis’ help…they want the Taliban to stand by them in case of intrusions into their area by Nato troops,” he explained.

And the Pakistan military is where? Oh yes accepting money to look the other way, whilst the Americans blast at random tribals (or militants who are a problem for Pakistan) in an effort to make themselves feel safer whilst the military casually attempts to undermine the civilian government in Islamabad.

Does the Goddamn military want a passage through Kurram for their pet Haqqani at the cost of Pakistani lives so that when they stage a farcial North Waziristan offensive (one where the Taliban give them a walkover) the Haqqanis have a safe escape route? One that would come at the cost of the lives of my fellow citizens, the Turi tribe of Kurram? Kill the Haqqanis in their stead.


Alpha Za said...

Jeez. Talk about a complicated situation.

I love Karachi. Karachi is Awesome!

TLW said...

Murtaza, we could do something; if we know anyone in the ISI we could ask them to stop interdicting the Turis.

Alpha Za said...

Yes, but when has the ISI ever acted with non-dysfunctional reasoning?

TLW said...

when has the ISI ever acted with non-dysfunctional reasoning?

:P Yeah

You're right about those khaki boys.

Doesn't mean we shouldn't try and stop them.

Do you have a twitter account. I'm afraid if I get one, I'll stop working.

Alpha Za said...

Fair point. I'll write my local Parliamentarian, you start a facebook group ;)

I do, ManMadeMovement. Don't actually use it. But if one get's addicted to it, well, they can kiss anything resembling productivity goodbye.

Shahid said...

I really never realized the complexity of the situation in the region. The Turis sure are suffering now. Read today's column in
DT by Farhat Taj as well. While I do not agree with a lot of stuff she has to say, but when she says that Orakzai has not been cleaned like the military likes to claim it is, I have to agree with her.

Really nice stuff this. Thumbs up.

TLW said...

Yeah Shahid, you're right about the Farhat Taj column. She makes one valid point; she says there can be no peace until the terrorist leadership is eliminated. I agree with her on that, even though I think she goes out of the way to present an ultra Pakhtun nationalist viewpoint just to annoy people.

But the part about eliminating the terrorist leadership I agree. That's why I wrote that blog post titled Why is Qari Hussain Ahmed Still Alive. The point still stands, the new generation of militants need to be eliminated, not just the third, fourth and accidentally, the second tier of leadership, the way the Pakistan military does it; but the entire leadership of the TTP and the sectarian groups. Problem is that the military still wishes to preserve some of the "active" groups.

How to convince the military that these people are better off dead, or in a prison dungeon for the rest of their lives. I think in Swat they've done some level of changing the environment. But in Fata when will they eliminate the leadership? Maybe when they return stronger than before?