August 12, 2006Foreign Affairs

Reactions from the centre of the jihadi universe

Denial, mostly

This is an archived blog post from The Acorn.

A bit of scepticism is in order (about the veracity of the British & American claims that there was a massive terrorist attack in the offing), writes the Pakistan’s Daily Times. That’s because the past record of intelligence agencies everywhere suggests they are quite capable of blowing up or underplaying things for better media management of their respective governments’ performance’.

Admitting that its position comes close to indulgence in conspiracy theories, the newspaper suggests that the Bush-Blair duo had every incentive to cook up something sensational to draw attention away from their failures (and the killings of hundreds by Israel in Lebanon’). So give us the facts, it asks. What is implicit is that unless proven otherwise, the newspaper sees good reason to believe in the conspiracy theories, of which proof is neither offered nor demanded. [Related Links: Unfortunately, the editors of Daily Times have been giving credence to too many conspiracy theories.]

The News goes a step further. The incident has made clear, yet again’, it charges, that the real cause of global terrorism is the political and economic injustice of US policies in the world’. It warns that America and Britain will continue to face such threats in future but what is more important is that both the US and the UK should try and understand what is causing some of their citizens to consider such extreme acts’.

And Dawn takes a fighting stance. Pakistan needs no lectures on fighting terrorism, for in fact, what Pakistan has done in smashing terrorist cells and arresting some of the leading Al Qaeda activists is unprecedented. No other country can match Pakistan’s record’. In its opinion, Pakistan is fighting terrorism of its own volition, while Afghanistan and India are using it as a bogey’ to further their own interests.

That the Musharraf regime has no choice but to attempt to portray itself as a indispensable partner in the war against al-Qaeda is understandable. But it is baffling that the editors of Dawn can’t figure out the reason why no other country can match Pakistan’s record. If there is one truth that hit the world on its face in the last couple of days, it is that half-a-decade after Gen Musharraf’s supposed U-turn on terror, Pakistan remains the centre of the jihadi universe. At this time most of the Pakistani press is in a state of denial.

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