Whoever is responsible for the attacks in Mumbai, one thing is for certain; they were an extremely well armed, well equipped and highly organised group which puts them well outside of the usual rag-tag ‘terrorist’ groups that one would generally associate with these seemingly random attacks against civilian targets. The sophistication and their apparent coolness together with their well coordinated and simultaneous attacks against specific targets has all the hallmarks of a professional covert operation planned and coordinated in real time by persons other than those actually involved in carrying out the attacks.
The clear intention, as Fox News is already trying to do, is to blame the attacks on Pakistani extremists associated with ‘al Qaeda’ and the Taliban for the purpose of directly associating elements of the Pakistan intelligence services with ‘terrorism’ thereby, in turn, implying that some unknown Pakistani government personnel are supporters of extremists. Since Pakistan is a nuclear armed nation one can easily see where this is going.
Hawkish elements and neocons within the Bush administration have for some time expressed fears about where Pakistan might be headed after the pro-US President Musharraf was tossed out of power and would be looking for any excuse to ensure that Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal was secure and out of reach of hostile elements of the Pakistan government. Linking these attacks to elements of the Pakistan government is just one more step intended to get world public opinion on side for an ‘intervention’ by the US and their allies into Pakistani affairs. Indeed, I was very recently told personally by a senior Australian Defence official that Pakistan was of extreme concern to the Australian government and that the Australian government regards Pakistan as a highly dangerous nation and potential enemy of the west in the ‘very near future’.
Whether or not these attacks are designed to actually trigger an ‘intervention’ by the US and their allies against Pakistan or is simply part of a build up to ensure public opinion is on side for an ‘intervention’ at a later date is, as yet, unclear. What is clear, however, is that these attacks were not carried out by al Qaeda or the Taliban; they were far too sophisticated for that.