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.

Read: On Dec 31, 9 Pakistan calls on taxi driver’s phone; one incoming, eight outgoing

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?
    Reply
    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.
      Reply
      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
        Reply
        1. Y
          Yogesh
          Jan 6, 2016 at 9:35 am
          Time to revisit Baluchistan and Sindh parion
          Reply
          1. अण्णाजी
            Jan 6, 2016 at 7:38 am
            Surprise Surprise !
            Reply
            1. A
              Alisina
              Jan 6, 2016 at 7:49 am
              stan ISI, what nonsense.
              Reply
              1. R
                Rudram
                Jan 6, 2016 at 11:48 pm
                bomb stan to teach them lesson
                Reply
                1. A
                  Ash
                  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.
                  Reply
                  1. D
                    Duru
                    Jan 6, 2016 at 7:30 am
                    If the US was smelling of such an attack, why they did not alert India, THANKS TO GOOD RELATION OF OBAMA AND MODI?????
                    Reply
                    1. M
                      Muhammad Kashif
                      Jan 6, 2016 at 8:11 am
                      First best joke of the 2016......hahahahah
                      Reply
                      1. F
                        faruk
                        Jan 7, 2016 at 5:45 am
                        Yes former White House official had a dream ISI is behind every attack!
                        Reply
                        1. P
                          PKR
                          Jan 6, 2016 at 8:15 am
                          The Pathankot attack is to show that the stanis will not bring anything to the negotiating table and we will have to compromise on Kashmir and a host of other issues the long term it is going to be beneficial to India as peace with stan will only mean more free access to the radicals/refugees without any returns. Sooner or later Us/India/China will decide it is better to divide stan further and stop all the terrorism activities.
                          Reply
                          1. K
                            Karachian
                            Jan 7, 2016 at 7:35 pm
                            We wont take any action on the orders of Indians or even requests from them, unless it is legitimate. We are taking actions against terrorists and the world appreciates that. A "well-informed press and other knowledgeable sources" have told me that Indian RAW is funding and training the Taliban terrorists who are committing acts of terrorism in stan. Proofs have been given to the world. India should first take action against those. As regards attacking stan, you are most welcome. Try it this time and see your beloved Mumbai, New Dehli and Kolkata turn into rubble.
                            Reply
                            1. K
                              kamath Ramesh
                              Jan 6, 2016 at 8:06 am
                              Having such an evidence why US is not taking strong action on Pak by stopping all its aid and gathering all countries against Pak.
                              Reply
                              1. B
                                Baba
                                Jan 6, 2016 at 9:18 am
                                It is powerful in the sense that it CONTROLS the NAPUNSAK civilian govt. of pokistaan and extracts huge amt of money frm it despite many pokis die out of hunger everyday.....
                                Reply
                                1. M
                                  MANISH KUMAR
                                  Jan 6, 2016 at 9:34 am
                                  crucial incident occur at Pathankot airbase in Indian. Where is Mr Rahul hi Yuvraj of Congress Party? Yuvraj still celebrating his new year, come to India for your foolish/worthless comment. Rahul hi Come Back of India
                                  Reply
                                  1. M
                                    mkd
                                    Jan 6, 2016 at 11:02 am
                                    we have broken them into two in 1971. We did many political mistakes after war such as handing over 93000 surrendered pak army and hand over Hajipur in platter which we managed to capture. we should hand them over to Muthijhodha and kept hajipur with us.
                                    Reply
                                    1. M
                                      mkd
                                      Jan 6, 2016 at 2:17 pm
                                      We already know in 1971 they sided with stan. they are talking with forked tongue. If you don't know read the blood telegram.
                                      Reply
                                      1. P
                                        Polakal Keshavdas
                                        Jan 6, 2016 at 7:49 am
                                        Nothing moves across the Pathankot border without the Pak army connivance; therefore their army was fully involved. Whether their political insutions were also on board is inconsequential. The new poster boy, reluctant army chief Gen Sharif, was persuaded by the United States to get on board for the rapprochement talks. There were two possible events that provoked the attack. 1. The moving of the talks forward quicker than intended by Gen Sharif. 2. The unprecedented Indian arms purchases culminated by the Russian deal. Whether the attack was just a knee-jerk miffed army reaction or a response to unprecedented Indian arms purchases is what has to be discussed.
                                        Reply
                                        1. R
                                          ramdas
                                          Jan 6, 2016 at 7:30 am
                                          Nothing new and White House continues to supply weapons without remorse. Aiding and abetting a regime sponsoring terror in the region. This double game and double speak is going to prove costly to US. There will always be a divine retribution for it.
                                          Reply
                                          1. R
                                            Rakesh Kumar
                                            Jan 6, 2016 at 8:22 am
                                            I don't agree with the comment "stan’s powerful intelligence agency ISI is behind the attack on Pathankot air base". ISI and PAK Army are not powerful but bunch of cowards. If they think they are powerful, let them come forward and challenge our army and then decide who is powerful.
                                            Reply
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