November 29, 2008

Mumbai Terrorism Crises: Possible Sources, Implications and Questions raised ...

Greg Sheridan continues his analysis of the Mumbai attacks and the implications for the wider war on terror:

… The terrorist massacres in Mumbai this week are India's 9/11...

… They represent, too … a definitive merger of internal Indian conflicts with the global war on terror … they also represent a formal notice of combat to the American president-elect, Barack Obama ...

… The Indian military has let it be known that it believes the Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Toiba … US intelligence, on the other hand, believes the attacks bear the unmistakable signs of al-Qa'ida.

… Pramit Chaudhuri, senior editor of the Hindustan Times and one of India's most brilliant and influential strategic analysts, outlines a different theory … telling local newspapers’ that the attack could have been a combined effort by LeT and al-Qa'ida ...

… Even if the Pakistani Government is not involved, its growing status as a failed state is evident in the home that regional terrorists have found in its lawless provinces … Al-Qa'ida now has more Pakistani and Afghan recruits than Arabs...

On a positive note, the Indian Government and “senior think tank figures and others have had a lot of communication from the Obama team in the past few days. This is a heartening sign because one of the strategic objectives of the terrorists was surely to harm India-US relations ...

There remain many unanswered questions. Why the focus on foreigners? Does it mean that the attacks were as much against the West and if so, what aspect of this? Our presence in Afghanistan, Iraq or both? Alternatively, was it in protest to India’s continuing alignment with Western allies? And in terms of likely sources, the tactics used are interesting for they are certainly different those used on urban India in the past. For example, we cannot help but think that the attackers set out to fight until the very end or at least, until captured otherwise why show their faces to media groups. Questioning of those seized will be highly revealing and generate much media hype which may be precisely what the architects of the attacks are hoping for.

We must be patient, in good time, we shall learn more...

1 comments:

disaster management preparedness said...

It is interesting that things like this aren't publicized more often in the US. I had no idea.