Pakistan’s ISI behind Pathankot air base attack: Former top White House official

He said both attacks were the handiwork of Pakistani terror group Jaish-e-Muhammad which the ISI created 15 years ago.

By: PTI | Washington | Updated: January 6, 2016 12:58 pm
pathankot, pathankot attack, pathankot air base, pathan kot air base attack, air force base attack, pathankot news, mazar-e-sharif, indian embassy attack, india terrorist attack, india news Soldiers climb up the stairs of a residential building outside the Indian air force base in Pathankot on Sunday evening. (AP Photo)

Pakistan’s powerful intelligence agency ISI is behind the attack on Pathankot air base in Punjab using a terrorist group it created 15 years ago, a former top White House official has said.

Bruce Riedel, who worked in the National Security Council of the White House and was among the few present at the Bill Clinton-Nawaz Sharif meeting in 1999 during Kargil war, said the attack is designed to prevent any detente between India and Pakistan after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s surprise Christmas Day visit to Pakistan.

In an article in the Daily Beast, Riedel said the attacks in Pathankot and on the Indian Consulate in Mazar-e-Sharif in northern Afghanistan was the handiwork of Pakistani terror group Jaish-e-Muhammad which the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) created 15 years ago.

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He quoted “well-informed press and other knowledgeable sources” for his assessment.

He said the ISI is under the generals’ command and is composed of army officers, so the spies are controlled by the Pakistani army, which justifies its large budget and nuclear weapons program by citing the Indian menace.

“Any diminution in tensions with India might risk the army’s lock on its control of Pakistan’s national security policy. The army continues to distinguish between ‘good’ terrorists like JEM and LET and ‘bad’ terrorists like the Pakistani Taliban, despite decades of lectures from American leaders,” he said.

Riedel, a former CIA officer, said the Pakistani army has long distrusted Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, who has advocated a detente with India since the 1990s.

“An army coup in 1999 sent him into exile in Saudi Arabia for a decade. His warm embrace of Modi on Christmas Day in his home in Lahore undoubtedly angered the generals,” he said.

He noted that the US put JeM on the terrorist sanctions list years ago — but it continues to coddle the Pakistani army.

“Gen Raheel Sharif, the army’s boss, got a warm embrace from the Pentagon last fall—despite the ISI support for the Afghan Taliban’s offensive against the Kabul government and despite the Pakistani military’s backing of terror groups like JeM,” he said.

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  1. मनीष
    Jan 6, 2016 at 11:55 pm
    A simple question: Does Islam have anything good to offer to mankind? stan has 97% Muslim potion. What did you expect from s?
    1. मनीष
      Jan 7, 2016 at 4:25 am
      Its time for Indians to take action. Stop buying things made in an Islamic country and stop buying anything from a Muslim owned store/business.
      1. M
        Muhannad Ellahee
        Jan 6, 2016 at 6:08 pm
        Don't Indians have anything better to do than insulting stan or blaming them for every single bloody problem
        1. Y
          Jan 6, 2016 at 9:35 am
          Time to revisit Baluchistan and Sindh parion
          1. अण्णाजी
            Jan 6, 2016 at 7:38 am
            Surprise Surprise !
            1. A
              Jan 6, 2016 at 7:49 am
              stan ISI, what nonsense.
              1. R
                Jan 6, 2016 at 11:48 pm
                bomb stan to teach them lesson
              2. A
                Jan 6, 2016 at 11:30 am
                How come this is not reported in any of the international news in other countries. At least not to my knowledge. I checked CNN, BBC and even googled Bruce Riedel only to find no such reporting. There is no point in reporting such information that was privately given by a former unknown to a another unknown anonymously. The fact that needs to be focussed on is India's total void in security system and preparedness. There has been not even a sign of this and adding insult to injury is the fact that there is even a bigger void when it comes to response choices. A country that harps on superpower status has only 2 options to work with stan. Talks and cancel talks. That too with a country that is economically, diplomatically and supposedly militarily inferior to us by decades. Or, may be it is time to wake up and realise our governments been knapping so much and for so long so that we have no recollection of when was the last time we really had our act together.
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