Sunday, March 21, 2010

What does America have to hide?

This is in respose to the article by Mr.Vir Sanghvi in Hindustan Times What does America have to hide?

Your hypothesis accepted, the reaction from the Indian side would have been instant compliance of the demand from the USA. We belong to the mind set where every wish of the US is a command for us.

We are digressing from the facts by focusing on the US in the case of David Coleman Headley. Probability or rather we should say it is certain that this individual is an American undercover operative. US would most certainly protect its other assets which are deployed in the AFPAK region. This man furnished minimal information to FBI or CIA or DEA about the possible terror event happening in Mumbai on the basis of which intelligence input were provided to the Government of India. 26/11 proved to be a paradigm shift in terrorism not just in India, world over. The intensity, audacity and the accuracy, with which the attack was carried out, must have taken the American agencies by surprise and there after he seems to have been placed under enhanced surveillance by FBI leading to his arrest and conviction.

The crux of the investigations is that FBI by now has the names, ranks of the serving officer from the Pakistan Army, Navy and ISI. This just about leads us to the most volatile situation; disclosure would lead to an instant armed response from any self respecting Nation in the estimations of the US Agencies. India is not in that category because the present dispensation lacks the will and courage to walk that path. Any armed conflict however brief will directly impact US fight on terror in AFPAK, this is unacceptable to USA.

The deficiencies are inherently with us and our establishment, let us not absolve ourselves, nor indulge in chest beating or point accusing finger at US of A, making it out to be a great betrayal of Himalayan proportions.

The questions we need to be asking of our Government? Here are some for which we need to have answers.

Why a comprehensive investigation has not been carried out for 26/11? In the face of the following facts or premises!

1. Terrorists involved were foreigners, presumably on their first mission to Mumbai India. Even the most highly trained commandos do stray and struggle in the urban settings on foreign lands to reach their targets.

2. Mumbai incident should not be seen simply as a terror attack. It was a behind the lines commando operation.

3. The individuals involved were not highly educated?

4. GPS used, are not homing devices therefore a reading of 5 or 10 minutes plus or minus for a degree could mean a parallel bylane and not necessarily the target lane. Yet the terrorist reached their targets with uncanny accuracy.

5. Video recording of a street or a lane form either end would disorient even the best trained commando in a foreign land.

6. Cities look different under different light conditions. If the videos shown were shot during the day, then they would not serve as effectively during the night and vice versa.

7. Navigating on high seas one has to be trained by a person who has the experience of having been on the high seas (Navy), no army man can train another person for sea operations.

8. LeT most definitely does not have the requisite expertise to train terrorists in all areas of operation, hence personnel from the armed forces have to be involved and their finger prints are visible in 26/11 attack.

9. Landing at a designated point along the coast is possible with the help of the GPS, yet it cannot take you to your destination with pinpoint accuracy. Local assistance cannot and should not be ruled out. Even incase of Aircrafts where INS is used (Inertial Navigation System) The aircrafts on Auto pilot would stray by a few fractions of a degree and altitude of a 100ft above and below.

10. The ease with which, the terrorists moved around and took up positions in the Hotels again points to some sort of local assistance, it is not possible for a person who goes into a large property to get to designated spot without any guidance. The terrorist were not exposed to super deluxe hotel properties prior to their attack on Mumbai we can safely assume.

11. Even if Headley is extradited to India given the state of affairs in our country could we hope for an expeditious trial and closure?

The world is full of inequality, when we are unable to offer equal treatment to our own citizens in this country, why are we expecting to be treated as an equal by the US. Equal treatment cannot be demanded, it has to be earned and we unfortunately have done nothing that entitles us for special treatment. Compassionate ground may be valid for us to hand out top jobs of our country. USA may empathize with us, unfortunately will not compromise its supreme national interest.

Let us pledge to work harder, learn to fight our own battles, have the basic intelligence to decipher, when other country provide us with intelligence input, instead of issuing weather man reports and later claim actionable intelligence or otherwise.