Ansar Abbasi Twists Facts, History In Defence of Militants

Aug 20th, 2012 | By | Category: Conspiracy Theories, The News

The News (Jang Group)In his latest piece for The News (Jang Group), Ansar Abbasi requests “home-grown solutions to Talibanisation” – something many people would probably agree with. Unfortunately, he then goes on to spread a mixture of misinformation and pro-militancy which undermines his original thesis, suggesting that Ansar Abbasi’s “solution” to Talibanisation is actually to embrace it.

Abbasi begins his piece by saying “It is high time to seriously look for a home grown solution and hear what the likes of Imran Khan say.” PTI chief Imran Khan has gained fame for his demands to withdraw support for the fight against terrorists including those located in North Waziristan. But Imran Khan has not stopped there. In addition to calling on an end to support for US efforts against militant groups, he has also called for an end to militant groups in Pakistan. Imran Khan told Barkha Dutt on NDTV that Pakistan should eliminate all militant groups in the country:

Imran Khan: No country should ever allow any militant groups within. That’s true. And I believe that whenever Pakistan gets out of this war on terror, the first thing it should do is de-weaponise. There should be no militants operating in Pakistan – whether they are ethnic, whether they are religious, whether they are sectarian.

Barkha Dutt: Including groups like the Lashkar-e-Taiba that India, I know, has the most concerns about; or the Jaish-e-Mohammad?

Imran Khan: No militant groups should ever be allowed to function in a state. Because you will eventually suffer because of that.

Ansar Abbasi also terms the militant group of Jalaluddin Haqqani as “pro-Pakistan Haqqani Network”. According to Abbasi, following the advice of Imran Khan and de-weaponising and de-banding militant groups like the Haqqani Network “would mean turning Haqqanis against Pakistan and thus forcing them to join TTP’s campaign against Pakistan”.

What Abbasi fails to explain, however, is why a “pro-Pakistan” militant group is sitting on the sidelines and allowing TTP to carry out attacks against Pakistanis? If the Haqqani Network is truly “pro-Pakistan”, shouldn’t they be fighting against TTP in North Waziristan where both have camps?

And is not just Haqqanis that Ansar Abbasi believes are “pro-Pakistan”. Later he suggests that Taliban and even al Qaeda are pro-Pakistan groups. Abbasi’s reasoning is that al Qaeda leaders were unhappy with TTP’s actions, therefore they must not be enemies of Pakistan.

The TTP’s indiscriminate attacks against Muslims caused two al-Qaeda leaders Atiyyatullah and Abu Yahya al-Libi to write to TTP leader Hakimullah Mahsud to express their displeasure with the group’s “ideology, methods and behaviour”. They also threatened to take public measures unless they saw from TTP serious and immediate practical and clear steps towards reforming its ways and dissociating itself from these vile mistakes that violate Islamic Law, the media report said.

But disagreements between ideology and action do not mean that militant groups are enemies, and disagreements between militant groups definitely do not imply that one or another group is not the enemy of some third party. Actually, al Qaeda has a long history of expressing unhappiness with the actions of allied terror groups including its own lieutenants. Documents found in Osama bin Laden’s hideout that was raided last year indicate that al Qaeda was not frustrated with TTP only, but also with al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, and the al Shahbab group in Somalia. Al Qaeda leaders have even had internal fights in which they warned each other against “ideology, methods and behaviour” that they did not agree on. The most famous of these internal fights was between al Qaeda leaders Atiyah and Abu Musab al-Zarqawi.

A top al-Qaida official warned Abu Musab al-Zarqawi six months before he was killed by a U.S. airstrike that he would be removed as the terror group’s head in Iraq if he did not consult with the group’s leadership on major issues.

An al-Qaida leader named “Atiyah” cautioned al-Zarqawi in an 11-page letter against the war he had declared on Shiite Muslims.

The letter also criticized attacks the Iraqi branch had carried out in neighboring countries — an apparent reference to last year’s triple suicide attacks on hotels in the Jordanian capital of Amman that killed dozens.

Ansar Abbasi not only makes excuses for al Qaeda and other terror groups, he also repeats disproven conspiracy theories. Abbasi says the US “has established a net-work of Raymond Davis like agents within Pakistan”, but he fails to note that actually Pakistan kicked out 331 US officials suspected of being engaged in espionage over one year ago. Abbasi asks “who protects and feeds the anti-Pakistan Taliban in Kunar, Afghanistan”? But he does not ask who protects and feeds the anti-Pakistan Taliban in North Waziristan, in Karachi, and in Lahore. Neither does Abbasi mention that US Gen James N Mattis, Mattis, Commander of United States’ Central Command (Centcom) and COAS Gen Kayani consider TTP a “common enemy” or that TTP leader Baitullah Mehsud was killed by a US drone strike.

The Investigative Editor of Jang Group has continually expressed his sympathies with al Qaeda, Hizb-ut-Tahrir and other extremist groups, so this is nothing really new. Ansar Abbasi is entitled to his opinion that supports al Qaeda and Taliban militants, but he is not entitled to twist facts and history in order to justify his sympathies.

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