Border Clashes Continue
Vol: 3 Issue: 27 Thursday, December 27, 2001
The Times of India reported ‘indiscriminate’ Pakistani shelling of Indian positions for the fifth straight day, claiming four deaths. The build-up on the Pakistani side has led to mobilization of several corps — including Pakistan’s strike 23 Corps, 10th Corps, 30th Corps and 1st Corps. On Monday, Pakistan’s army had deployed anti-aircraft guns and moved most of its troops stationed at the eastern garrison town of Sialkot to the border with India.
Pakis Go On Nuclear Alert
Pakistani leader Gen. Pervez Musharraf has placed his nation s strategic forces on alert, according to the Pakistan Observer. It also reported that Pakistani military forces also were being moved in response to reports that India military forces force were preparing to conduct raids and interdictions into Pakistan near Kashmir. Asked if nuclear weapons might be used, Pakistani Brigadier General Mohammed Yaqub said, “probably there won’t be any hesitation to use nuclear weapons.” Pakistan has two types of missiles capable of delivering nuclear warheads and aircraft capable of dropping nuclear bombs. We’ll be exploring the significance of this developing situation in an upcoming Omega Letter Special Report.
China Expands Ties With Rogue States
Beijing s Marxist-Leninists met with hundreds of supporters and expanded ties to states considered rogue nations in the West. In an interview with a Chinese party newspaper, Dai Bingguo, head of the Liaison Department of the Chinese Communist Party s Central Committee, revealed that inter-party meetings in 2001 included more than 200 party delegations from over 100 nations. The CPC also sent out over 100 delegations around the world, the most important one being Chinese leader Jiang Zemin s visit to North Korea. Another key foreign meeting was the visit of Hu Jintao, considered the favorite to succeed Jiang in the coming year as party chairman and supreme leader, to Vietnam. We have made many new friends, he said. In order to maintain the continuity and stability of inter-State relations, we have vigorously developed exchanges and cooperation with the main out-parties in various countries.
New bin-Laden Tape Released
Osama bin Laden reappeared in a video tape aired by Qatar-based television station and propaganda network Al- Jazeera this week. The video tape was made to sound as if it were shot sometime in mid-December, but some of bin-Laden’s references indicated it was more likely shot in mid-November. bin-Laden appeared pale and shaky on the tape, and seemed to be favoring his left side. bin-Laden tried to turn the war against terror into what he called the West’s “unspeakable hatred of Islam.”
In a stunning bit of circular logic, bin-Laden admitted to being behind the attacks, referring to “our blessed attacks” on the US, then later in the same excerpt, saying the U.S. was bombing Afghanistan without proof that he or his al-Qaeda network was responsible.
Afghanistan’s provisional government immediately denounced the claim, saying the US war wasn’t against Islam, it was against al-Qaeda. Since Afghanistan was the battlefield in that war, its condemnation of bin-Laden was significant. The US simply called it what it was, more propaganda. The tape does nothing to answer the question of whether bin-Laden is alive or dead.
Egypt Accepts bin-Laden’s Guilt
On the day bin-Laden’s third tape was released, Egypt’s Interior Minister Habib el-Adly was quoted in an Egyptian magazine as saying Egyptian security forces “consider it a clear confession of bin Laden’s responsibility in all that happened …. It is a complete confession that implicates him.”
Egypt is conducting its own war against fundamentalist Islamist groups that are seeking to destabilize and topple the Mubarak regime. El-Adly is leading that effort. Egypt’s acceptance of bin-Laden’s guilt is likely to inflame its internal unrest further. International human rights groups have criticized Egypt’s indefinite detention of terror suspects and its practice of trying them before military tribunals. El-Adly made no apologies for Egypt’s harsh anti-terrorism tactics, saying those who practice terrorism “are not human beings and have nothing to do with humanity. Animals are more kind than them.”