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Thursday, April 24, 2008

Waziri tribal militant Baitullah Mehsud makes truce with Pakistan.

HISTORY IN THE NEWS:



History never dies. It is reborn every minute of every day.

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DEDICATED TO THE ORIGINS OF CONTEMPORARY EVENTS AROUND THE WORLD.

“The main characteristic of the Pashtoons, particularly those of the hills, is a proud and aggressive individualism, practiced in the context of a familial and tribal society with predatory habits, a part feudal and part democratic ethos, an uncompromising Muslim faith and a simple code of conduct.”- Martin Ewans, AFGHANISTAN.

HISTORY IN THE NEWS:

DEVOTED TO THE DEEP ORIGINS OF CONTEMPORARY EVENTS AROUND THE WORLD.


TAG: The tentative peace deal between Waziristan Pashtun tribal militants and the Pakistani army may only be the latest chapter in a century and a half of negotiations with Waziristan, first by British and then Pakistani governments.

IN THE NEWS: BAITULLAH MEHSUD, LEADER OF PRO-TALIBAN TRIBAL MILITANTS IN WAZIRISTAN, AND ALLEGEDLY RESPONSIBLE FOR THE ASSASSINATION OF BENAZIR BHUTTO, HAS ORDERED A STOP TO ALL ATTACKS IN PASKISTAN. THIS MAY BE A RESPONSE TO THE NEW GILLANI GOVERNMENT'S COMMITMENT TO "DIALOGUE AND DEVELOPMENT" AND TO PAKISTAN'S RELEASE OF MILITANT MAULANA SUFI MOHAMMED. A PEACE DEAL WITH THE ARMY COULD RESULT IN THE EXPULSION OF FOREGIN FIGHTERS IN SOUTH WAZIRISTAN. HOWEVER, SIMILAR WAZIRISTAN PEACE DEALS BETWEEN MILITANTS AND THE ARMY, HAVE ONLY RESULTED IN TERRITORIAL GAINS FOR THE MILITANTS ALONG WITH RENWED AGGRESSION.





REARVIEW MIRROR
1849- -the British take over the Frontier region from the Sikhs. the Deputy Commissioner, Dera Ismail Khan (NWFP)and Bannu controls all political matters in Waziristan- even though the tribes of neighbouring North Waziristan are under the sovereignty of the Kabul government. In Waziristan on the border with Afghanistan, two Pashtun tribes, the Waziris and the
Mehsuds use the mountainous region to resist British rule.

1894-95- Extensive British military operations against tribal insurgents in Waziristan.
1947---the Waziristan tribes, led by the Faqir of Ipi, receive arms from Afghanistan which agitates for a fully independent Pashtunistan of all Pashtun borderlands, including Waziristan.
2006- -11 July- after a week-long stand-off, security forces storm and seize the Red Mosque, in Islamabad, killing over 80 militants. In the wake of the assault on the red Mosque, Waziristan and Pakistan erupt in revenge suicide and bomb attacks. In response to the violence and to US threats to pursue the Taliban inside Pakistan, Musharraf resume the military campaign inside Waziristan.


WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
The Waziristan region, in the Suleiman mountains on the border between Pakistan and Afghanistan has always been a marginal area between empires and nations. Between Persia and India, between the Afghan empires of the 18th century and the Indian Moghuls, Waziristan had tended to remain an inaccessible borderland resistant to outside control. The Waziri tribes have been jealous of their independence from the earliest times. The Moghuls claimed the region only through tribute and treaty. From Britain's gradual acquisition of Pakistani territories in the mid-19th century to the partition and independence of Pakistan in 1947, British officials attempted centralized, imperial rule of Waziristan, from India. Military incursions, operations and massacres by both sides only stiffened Waziri resistance. British attempts to supply infrastructure and offer the incentive of development were bloodily resisted. Waziri tribal leaders of the Wazir and Mehsud (from whom Baitullah is descended) clans gained great prestige. Around the turn of the century, Britain was forced to relent and adopt the Tribal Agency system in which North and South Waziristan were left with effective autonomy while a British agent remained in Wana to represent imperial interests. Perpetual bargaining slowly replaced military confrontation. In 1947, with partition and independence, the new state of Pakistan adopted Britain's agency system for indirect rule of Waziristan. The region became a key political, recruiting and training ground when Pakistan supported the creation o f the Taliban across the border in Afghanistan, in the mid-1990s. After Al Qaeda's 9/11 attacks on the US and the US invasion of Afghanistan in 2001-2002, South Waziristan became the hiding place of Osama Bin Laden. The proxy war fought on behalf of Washington by President Musharraf, against Taliban border strongholds has mostly been fought inside Waziristan where tribal militants are allied with Al Qaeda and the Taliban. The army, many of whom see the Waziris as fellow Muslims, have been fighting a half-hearted war in the region, resulting in a bloody stalemate. Repeated truces have allowed the pro-Taliban tribal militants to regroup. And treaties by which the army has agreed to withdraw from Waziristan have only resulted in the Taliban taking full control of the region and calling it an 'Emirate'. Musharraf's summer 2007 assault on militants in Islamabad's Red Mosque sparked terrible militant and tribal fury in Waziristan and fighting has continued off and on ever since.

IN A NUTSHELL:
A combination of the stalemated war in Waziristan and the new parliamentary regime of Reza Gillani, may be leading to a shift in the landscape. With control of parliament, the opposition could be seizing the initiative from President Musharraf by attempting a more practical, less confrontational approach to Muslim militants. Thus Mehsud's announcement of a truce. In the end, however, it seems to come down to the historical intransigence of Waziristan, where no outside power has ever been able to assert control.


Makin, South Waziristan
(from--- ttp://www.khpalapashtu.com/sitee/specialpages/phwazir.htm)

THEN AND NOW:
In 1850, parts of Waziristan were considered to be under Afghan rule and in 1919, Afghanistan's Amanullah threw off British rule by leading a tribal rebellion in Pashtun borderlands, including Waziristan. But the Durand line, drawn by the British in 1893 to separate Waziristan and the rest of Pakistan from Afghanistan, is still recognized as the border- by everyone except the Pashtuns.

CONTENTS: SCROLL DOWN FOR:
DISTANT BACKGROUND TO THE EVENTS
RELEVANT DATES
RECENT BACKGROUND TO THE EVENTS
.PREVIOUS ENTRIES
REMOTE BACKGROUND TO THE EVENTS
LOCATION OF NOTE:
PROFILE:
CROSS-CENTURY SUMMARY
EYEWTNESS
PRESENT SITUATION
PLUS CA CHANGE
CURIOSITY
TIMELINE FOR THE HISTORY OF

DISTANT BACKGROUND TO THE EVENTS:
While India began to fall under British control after 1840, the western or Pakistan region, which was mostly Muslim, wasn't formally acquired until the late 19th century. In 1849, the British took nominal control the Northwestern Frontier (currently a breeding ground for Islamist radicals) from the Sikhs. However, Britain's reach extended extended only up to Bannu, on the eastern border of Waziristan, (now the hotbed of the Taliban and pro-Taliban Islamic groups), which was still controlled from Afghanistan. By 1860, the British had moved across and into Waziristan but were being harassed by Mahsud tribesmen. In 1893, the British established the Durand line on the other side of Waziristan, as India's border with Afghanistan, drawing the frontier right through Afghanistan's largest and most powerful ethnic group, the Pashtuns. The effect was ultimately to strengthen a sense of Pashtun nationalism which in future would be exploited by Pakistan or Afghanistan in future rivalries. The ambivalent status of the Pashtuns in remote Waziristan and other border areas would also strengthen the Afghan Taliban who had their roots among the Pashtuns and would ally themselves with the Pashtun cause.
ORIGINS OF MILITANT WAZIRISTAN
Throughout the 1890s, British political agents were in charge of North and South Waziristan but were still faced with Pashtun tribal insurgencies overseen by the great Waziri leader, Mullah Powindah. In 1901 the British settled for containment rather than control and in 1910 adopted the tribal agency system which allowed autonomy for Waziristan, a system still used by Pakistan today. British efforts to try for peace, due to the pressures of World War One, only led to concerted attacks by Mahsud and Ghazi tribesmen and British retailiation through aerial bombardment. Even British attempts to open up Wazizristan with road-building resulted only in further attacks. In one assault in 1920 Waziris and Mahsuds together killed 500 British troops.
Mahsud-1.jpg (158480 bytes)
'Mahsud Prisoners taken by British, at Tank, Waziristan', 1917. (from http://www.king-emperor.com/Introduction.htm)

MUSLIM AND HINDU INDIA BEFORE PARTITION.
While Waziristan would resist change, tremendous transformation was afoot on the rest of Pakistan. In India, before Indian independence, Muslims and Hindus had got on reasonably well until politics and western ethnic and nationalist ideas encouraged the formation of ethnic identities. The western, or Pakistan region, had been relatively content under the British Raj but it was the Muslims of northern India who fared less well and consequently formed the Muslim League which distinguished itself from the larger and mostly Hindu Indian national Congress. Throughout the 1930s, the Muslim League, led by Mohammed al Jinnah, was increasingly alarmed by the power and size of the Hindu INC. In 1940, with the Lahore Resolution, the League declared that if the lot of Muslims didn't improve, Indian Muslims would move for secession.
FORMATION OF PAKISTAN.
When India became independent in 1947, the Muslim League, rather than share an India dominated by the vastly Hindu INC and a Hindu majority, seceded to form the state of Pakistan in the western region of Baluchistan, Punjab and the Northwest Frontier. At the same time, an eastern fragment of Pakistan was formed on the other side of India as East Pakistan.
Pakistan's first president was Mohammed al Jinnah. Two things were highly significant. The first was that Pakistan's raison d'etre was religious; it was formed as a Muslim state. Secondly, Pakistan inherited a British-made Indian constitution which was inadequate to a region which, despite being Muslim was ethnically diverse, with Pashtun tribal areas along the mountainous Afghan frontier resisting integration. That left Pakistan to copy the British technique of arranging a patchwork of treaties in what would remain a system of tribal agencies. These autonomous regions, far from the reach of the capital at Islamabad, would in future provide refuge for radical Islamist groups, the Taliban and al Qaeda.
KASHMIR
The creation of an ethnic and religious entity like Pakistan quickly produced tensions along its borders. An Indian Prince was left ruling a Muslim majority in the disputed northern region of Kashmir. The Muslims rebelled with Pakistani support and India intervened on the condition that Kashmir would become part of India. The UN intervened in 1949 and drew a provisional boundary, the Line of Control, which ever since has remained the site of repeated conflicts. The issue would also from the basis behind periodic threats of nuclear war between India and Pakistan.
DEMOCRACY STILLBORN
In 1956, Pakistan was finally given a constitution which proclaimed it an Islamic republic. Two years later, the country's short-lived democracy ended when President Ayub Khan took power in a coup d'etat. The tension between democracy and dictatorship would inform all of Pakistan's future history, west-leaning secular groups tending toward democracy while Muslim religious parties, alarmed by the threats of modern secularism, tending toward dictatorship. Never a marginal force, Islamic radicalism was always close to the centre of power, whether in the army, in government or in the official opposition.
BANGLADESH.
In 1971, East Pakistan, which had suffered discrimination under rule by West Pakistan, won the elections and Islamabad refused to recognize the result. A civil war followed which ended in East Pakistan's secession as the new state of Bangladesh.
ALI BHUTTO
In Pakistan itself, the pattern of secular and Muslim rivalry increased. The secular, nationalist and populist Ali Bhutto, was elected President. In 1977, he was overthrown by the Islamist General Zia Ul Haq. Nevertheless, Bhutto's family was to become a political dynasty and the accepted spearhead of the secular opposition.
UL HAQ, THE MUJEHADEEN AND THE SOVIET UNION IN AFGHANISTAN
Meanwhile, the ever shifting priorities of US foreign policy arrived at support for the Islamic Mujehadeen of Afghanistan in their resistance to the Soviet invasion of 1979. Ul Haq's Islamist regime received backing by Washington in return for help in arming and training the Afghan rebels. Ul Haq also extended largesse and favours to the tribes of Waziristan to enlist their help in the war against the Soviets in Afghanistan. Thus the seeds of what would be an Islamist Taliban-Al Qaeda enclave and a radically Islamized element in Pakistan's government were planted. Its intelligence wing, the ISI was central in the support of the Afghan rebels (and eventually the Taliban) and the Waziris who backed them and worked closely with the CIA.
BENAZIR BHUTTO
In 1978, Ali Bhutto had been executed after being charged with vote-rigging, corruption and murder. His daughter, the Oxford-educated Benazir Bhutto inherited the mantle of leader of the secular opposition and in 1984 founded the PPP or Pakistan People'd Party. She and her husband, like her father, would endure periods of arrest and exile and repeated charges of corruption by Islamist parties and governments. In 1988, General Zia Ul Haq was killed in plane crash, rumoured to be an assassination. In the same year, Benazir Bhutto was elected Prime Minister.

In 1988, Army Chief Aslan Beg formed a coalition of relgious parties (the IJI) against her. When the IJI lost, the ISI and the army threw their support behind Nawaz Sharif and his Pakistan Muslim League (PML). The army, working behind the scenes, forced Bhutto to relinquish all decision-making power on nuclear weapons to the military. In 1990 Beg was sued for using ISI money to form another anti-Bhutto alliance of relgious parties. The end for Bhutto came in the same year when she fired ISI head Hamid Gul without consulting Beg. She was promptly ousted on charges of corruption. In 1993 she was re-elected. It is believed by many that the MML, a powerful alliance of relgious parties, was expressly formed by Hamid Gul and the ISI to block the election of any secular party as well as to gather or to fabricate corruption charges against Benazir Bhutto.
BHUTTO AND THE TALIBAN
In 1994, unwitting of the ultimate consequences, Bhutto encouraged Pakistan's ISI in the formation of the Taliban religious militia in Afghanistan in the belief that a friendly, Islamist, Afghanistan would link Pakistan to the economies of the former Soviet republics in Central Asia. What was worse, the Taliban provided Afghanistan as a base for al Qaeda and its campaign of international teror. In 1996, Bhutto was dismissed, again on charges of corruption. She was succeeded by the Islamist Nawaz Sharif who angered the army by pulling it out of Kashmir and
dismissing its head, General Pervez Musharraf.
MUSHARRAF
In 1999, Musharraf took power in a bloodless military coup. After Al Qaeda's attacks on the United States on 9/11, Musharraf was coerced into supporting Washington's War on Terror, a campaign which would in fact amount to a war against al Qaeda strongholds and radical Islam inside Pakistan and across the border in Afghanistan. The US invaded Afghanistan and overthrew the Taliban obliging Musharraf to take up its fight against the Taliban resistance as well as al Qaeda, which had taken refuge in Pakistan's semi-autonomous tribal agencies. Musharraf, still presiding over an army which was at least in part Islamist and traditionally allied with the religious parties, as well as powerful Islamist elements in the ISI intelligence service, has had to walk a tightrope, on the one hand supporting Washington against the Taliban and al Qaeda and on the other, placating the religious parties and Islamist elements in his own government. The result has been a series of highly selective crackdowns on al Qaeda and the Taliban as well as occasional and highly publicized round-ups of Pakistani terror groups like those which hatched the London plot to bomb transatlantic airline flights in the summer of 2006.


RELEVANT DATES:
711- Muslim Arabs conquer the Indus valley.
1346-1564- Vijayanagar: the last Hindu resistance to Muslim rule.
1526- Babur, the first Moghul, invades India, takes the Gangetic plain and founds the Moghul Empire in India.. A Central Asian warlord, his Moghul empire includes Afghanista, Baluchistan, Sindh and Punjab (Pakistan) and India.
1526-1761- the region was ruled by the Moghul Emperors.
-1840s- the Pakistan region falls under British rule.
1849- -the British take over the Frontier region from the Sikhs. the Deputy Commissioner, Dera Ismail Khan (NWFP)and Bannu controls all political matters in Waziristan- even though the tribes of neighbouring North Waziristan are under the sovereignty of the Kabul government.
-in Waziristan on the border with Afghanistan, two Pashtun tribes, the Waziris and the Mahsuds use the mountainous region to resist British rule.
1860- 3000 Mahsud tribesmen attack a British regiment base in Tank (present South Waziristan).
1876- Baluchistan becomes a British protectorate.
1890- the British acquire west Punjab.
1893- the British acquire northern Balushistan.
1893-November , the Emir of Afghanistan signs a treaty renouncing all claims to Waziristan and the North West Frontier territories.
1893- the Durand line forms the limit of British territorial expansion into the Pashtun territories of Afghanistan. The Pashtun region, which had once defined Afghanistan, is split by the new boundary with Afghanistan. Western Pakistan is ceded to British India.
The line cuts through both Baloch and Pashtun tribes.
1894-95- Extensive British military operations against tribal insurgents in Waziristan.
1904- large scale disturbances in SouthWaziristan resulting murder of the Political Agent and Militia Commandant at Sarwakai
1910- North Waziristan is made a full fledged agency
- the Durand line allows for the border territory of Waziristan to be autonomous, outside of effective British rule. Instead, the British ruled by paying subsidies to tribal chieftains.
-otherwise, the Pakistan region remains generally loyal to the British Raj; its inhabits fare relatively well under the British Raj and are well represented in the army and in government.
-but in northern India, where Muslims fare less well, the Muslim League is formed. Its leader, Jinnah, demands greater rights for Indian Muslims.
1915- because of the stresses of World War I, the Brtish make a peace deal in Waziristan. But instead, Waziri tribes attack, inflicting heavy losses on the British. The British retalliate with aerial ombardment.
1919- British road building and fortification i Waziristan only results in more bloody tribal attacks.
1919- the Third Afghan War. Pashtun tribes under Afghan warlord Ananullah, on both sides of the Durand line, defeat the British. The British concede nationhood to Afghanistan by the Treaty of Kabul. Ananullah attempts westernizing reforms.
1947 -15 August- Pakistan becomes independent, comprising Sindh, Punjab and North-West Frontier with the Durand line remaining as the border between the two nations. The border still cuts through the region of the Pashtun people- despite Afghan claims on the entire Pashtun region, which includes much of the Baluchistan region of western Pakistan. Before departing the British had drawn the frontier between west Pakistan and India in haste, forcing bordering principalities to join either India or Pakistan
-Mohammed Jinnah is Pakistan’s first president.
Afghan king Zahir Shah claims the Pathan (western Pashtun) state from Pakistan. Meanwhile, he extracts support from both the US and the Soviet Union
--the Waziristan tribes, led by the Faqir of Ipi, receive arms from Afghanistan which agitates for a fully independent Pashtunistan of all pashtun borderlands, including Waziristan.
-but Waziristan frnally becomes part of Pakistan with Pakistani independence. Pakistan still rules Waziristan as the British did, with subsidied paid to tribal chieftains.
1948 -Afghanistan opposes formation of Pakistan, refusing to accept the Durand line- starting rivalry between them.
-Pakistan moves thousands of Pashtuns into the border area as a bulwark between Baluchis and Afghanistan
1971 -Zulfikar Ali Bhutto elected president- begins in a populist, socialist regime. He brings in nationalization and financial independence from the US.
1977- right wing and Islamist opposition to Bhutto leads to a military coup by General Zia Ul-Haq.
1978- Prime Minister Ali Bhutto is arrested by Zia Ul Haq's regime on charges of corruption and murder.
1979- April 4- after being sentenced to death, Bhutto is hanged.
1978-1988 Zia Ul Haq becomes president, imposes martial law, prohibits political activity and introduces Sharia.
1988- President Zia Ul-Haq killed at Dhaka in a plane crash.
1994- the Taliban, bolstered and supported (and some say, founded) by Pakistan’s Inter Services Intelligence Agency (ISI) in Quetta, Pakistan,- crosses into Afghanistan and takes Kandahar .
-the Taliban refuse to accept the Durand line that determines the border with Pakistan.
-1995- Benazir Bhutto encourages the formation of the Taliban, seeing it as a friendly Afghan Muslim party that will link Pakistan via Afghanistan to trade with Central Asia.
1999- General Musharraf takes power in a military coup. Musharraf suspends the constitution, asserts control over the judiciary and parliament.
2001- after the 9/11 attacks, Washington coerces Musharraf into supporting the US War on terror. But this gains Pakistan badly needed international loans.
-Pakistan's Inter Services Intelligence Agency (ISI) helps to form the the King's Party a coalition of Pakistan Muslim parties to back Musharraf's election as president. The MMA, a large alliance of religious parties, the King's Party and Bhutto's PPP are the largest parties in parliament.
-many believe the MMA was patched together by the ISI to support Musharraf.
-the MMA forms an alliance with the 'King;s party' to back Musharraf in the elections.
2002- -Musharraf wins presidential elections. He gains 5 more years in office in a referendum criticized as unconstitutional and biased. He awards himself sweeping new powers. After Musharraf is elected, an amenndment known as the 'legal framework order' gives him a five year term plus the power over many civil institutions and the power to dismiss national and state assemblies. The MMA is indispensable in getting the 'Legal Framework Order' passed into law. The parliament becomes Musharraf's instrument.
2006- June- followers of Islamabad’s Red Mosque Islamist leader al-Ghazi attempt to impose Sharia law on the city.
-11 July- after a week-long stand off, security forces storm and seize the Red Mosque, killing over 80 militants.
-in the wake of the assault on the red Mosque, Waziristan and Pakistan erupt in revenge suicide and bomb attacks. In response to the violence and to US threats to pursue the Taliban inside Pakistan, Musharraf resume the military campaign inside Waziristan.
-20 July- the Supreme Court reinstates Justice Choudhury
Sept. 8- General Musharraf has opposition leader Nawaz Sharif arrested upon his return to Pakistan. Sharif is exiled again to Saudi Arabia- in defiance of the Supreme Court's August ruling.
-14 September- Bhutto says she will return from exile in London in mid-October.
-Oct. 5-in a deal with Musharraf opposition PPP leader Benazir Bhutto agrees to abstain rather than to boycott the Pakistan election if the charges against her are dropped before she returns from exile in London.
-Oct. 6- Musharraf sweeps the elections.
-almost 200 are killed in fighting in North Waziristan as government forces fight Taliban and Taliban and al-Qaeda-aligned Islamist groups.
-Oct. 12- 2 suicide bombs directed at Bhutto's convoy from airport, kill donzens, upon her return from British exile.
-November- Musharraf declares emergency rule claiming Islamist threats to the government. Opponents charge him with attempting to lengthen his dictatorship as he uses the emergency to sack the Supreme Court on the eve of its decision about the legitimacy of his election as president while still chief of the army.
-Bhutto placed under house arrest as she plans a march against emergency rule.
-Musharraff says he will work with Bhuttto.
-Musharraf brings in a caretaker government.
-the chief election commissioner determines that elections for Prime Minister will be held on January 8, 2008.
-the election commission ratifies Musharraf's second five-year term in office.
-Nawaz Sharif allowed to return from exile.
-Musharraf hands over command of the Armed Forces to General Ashfaq Kayani.
-Bhutto says she may boycott the January 8 election.
-December 15- Musharraf ends the state of emergency, restores constitution.
-December 27- Bhutto is shot to death as suicide bombers hit her retinue after a rally in Rawalpindi.
2008- January -Musharraf postpones January 8 elections to February 18 due to instability.
-20 police killed in suicide bombing at an anti-Musharraf rally outside the High Court in Lahore.
-the army kills 90 tribal militants in South Waziristan.
-Jan 20- arrests by Pakistan security point to Baitullah Mehsud as mastermind behind assassination of Benazir Bhutto.
-Feb 1- Taliban leader Libbi reported killed by army in Pakistan.
-Feb 8- Tribal militant Baitullah Mehsud makes truce with Pakistan Army as part of a Taliban strategy to redirect the war on Afghanistan.
-Feb 18- the PPP and the PML-N sweep parliamentary elections, reducing Musharraf's PML Q.
The PPP's Asif Bhutto and the PML-N's Nawaz Sharif consider a coalition to oust Musharraf.
-March 25- Reza Gillani becomes Prime Minister of Pakistan.
-April 24- militant South Waziristan leader, Baitulla Mehsud makes truce with government- orders attacks to cease. Pakistany troops intend to withdraw from South Waziristan

RECENT BACKGROUND TO THE EVENTS. In January, 2007, tensions developed around the Islamist Red Mosque. Then, in the spring, mass protests erupted against Musharraf's firing of Pakistan's chief justice, Iftakar Mohammed Choudhury on charges of misusing his post. Choudhury, an activist judge, had often demanded the investigation of the country's intelligence services on the issue of missing persons and other matters involving military rule. It appears the anger about his dismissal was shared both by Islamist and democratic opponents of the government. Meanwhile, weeks of conflict involving Pakistan's Islamist extremists finally culminated in the army's assault on the Red Mosque and the killing of most of its radical defenders which led in turn to counter-attacks by Islamists all around the counrty. To make matters worse for Musharraf, the Supreme Court reinstated Choudhury. With Musharraff weakened by the Choudhury and Red Mosque affairs, Benazir Bhutto, in exile in England, chose the moment to gamble on a return to Pakistan by offering Musharraff a political partnership. As sole viable opposition leader it seemed a wise move. Moreover the return of her old adversary, Nawaz Sharif was nipped in the bud when when Musharraf had him arrested and exiled again at the airport September 8. On September 16, the court declared that a civil servant, contrary to former rulings can run for office without a mandatory two years absence from his post- clearing the way for Musharraf to run in elections. He had to abide by a promise to resign his army post upon taking office. He had to honour a pledge for Benazir Bhutto to return to Pakistan on October 17 free of corruption charges in return for having her her PPP party abstain instead of voting against him. Such was the atmosphere in Pakistan that Bhutto, arriving from exile in Britain, narrowly escaped death from a suicide attack on her convoy. On November 3, Musharraf declared a state of emergency allegedly on the grounds of a conspiracy from religious militants, though it was generally believed that he was merely lengthening his rule; and indeed he used the emergency to sack supreme court justices before they made a decision on the legitimacy of his election victory while still in uniform. Many of his political opponents were imprisoned; all political activity was banned; there was a crackdown on the media and Bhutto was placed under temporary house arrest to prevent her from leading a rally against the state of emergency. Musharraf promised elections for the post of Prime Minister on January 8, but most doubted that they would be free and fair. On December 15 he ended the state of emergency and restored the constitution, causing some question as to whether the state of emergency had indeed been imposed because of a threat from militants. On December 27, Bhutto, while campaigning in Rawalpindi, was assassinated in a suicide bombing. Nawaz Sharif was the only significant candidate left standing in what appeared to an opposition vacuum, until the PPP declared Bhutto's 19 year old son her successor at the head of the party with her widowed husband Asif Ali Zardari acting as regent in what seems more than ever to be a dynasty. Sharif, meanwhile, instructed his own party to boycott the January vote. Suspicions that Musharaff, through negligence or conspiracy allowed the assassination to happen, resulted in widespread rioting verging on anarchy. At the beginning of 2008, Musharraf postponed the election from January 8 to February 19 on grounds of bad security. In the run-up to the elections, suicide bombings took dozens of lives. The intention, most likely, was to prevent what was almost certain to be the return of moderate secular and moderate religious parties to power. On January 20, the arrest of a teenage boy in the assassination plot that killed Benazir Bhutto drew attention once again to the Islamist strongholds in the mountain fastness of Waziristan, Pakistan's lawless borderland on the Afghan frontier. Formally part of Pakistan, Waziristan is in fact autonomous and has provided bases for the Taliban in neighbouring Afghanistan. (In fact, Waziristan bitterly resisted the British for almost 90 years, between 1860 and the partition of Pakistan in 1947) The arrested fifteen-year-old said he was part of several back-up teams at the ready in case the first attack on Bhutto failed and that the entire operation was overseen by Baitullah Mehsud. Mehsud is the senior Taliban commander in South Waziristan. Effectively ruling the tribal agency, he has been called the 'Emir of Waziristan.' Then, on February 1, there were reports from Pakistani intelligence sources that top al Qaeda leader, Abu Laith Al Libi had been killed in a missile strike in North Waziristan. On February 8, Baitullah Mahsud, Taliban leader in South Waziristan, made a truce with the Pakistan military. The truce, apparently arranged by Afghan Taliban leader Sirajuddin Haqqani, accords with the strategy of the Afghan Taliban across the border- who believe that resources and lives are being wasted by making war on Pakistan, when the main objective is Afghanistan. Mehsud is a descendant of the Mehsud tribe of Waziristan who fought British occupation of Waziristan for almost ninety years. Contrary to Mullah Omar in Afghanistan, he believes that the Taliban should fight all secularized Muslims everywhere. But it seemed he was overruled by the Afghan Talibam leaership.. Despite the threat of the militants, Pakistan had the courage to vote. On February 18, the PPP and the PML-N swept parliamentary elections, reducing Musharraf's PML-Q. The PPP's Asif Bhutto and the PML-N's Nawaz Sharif gradually brokered a coalition to oust President Musharraf. With the election of the PPP's Raza Gillani as prime minister, Musharraf will have to hope that Gillani will not follow through on his pledge to reinstate Supreme Court chief Choudhury and the other justices. Because if he does, Gillani will then have the supreme court backing he needs to dismiss President Musharraf.

PREVIOUS ENTRIES ON PAKISTAN:
PPP's Reza Gillani becomes Prime Minister 03/25/08
Musharraf loses parliamentary vote 02/20/08
Benazir Bhutto Assassinated 12/27/07
Musharraf declares State of Emergency 11/03/07
Attempt on life of Returning Bhutto 10/19/07
Musharraf Wins Landslide in Pakistan 10/06/07
Nawaz Sharif Arrested on Return to Pakistan 9/10/07
Exiled P.M. Nawaz Sharif to return to Paikistan 8/24/07
Afghanistan-Pakistan Joint Loya-Jirga: 8/13/07
Pakistan Islamists Respond to Fall of the Ted Mosque: 7/13/05

REMOTE BACKGROUND TO THE EVENTS: From ancient times, the region of the Indus river lay at the frontier between invasion from west and central Asia and the empires of the Indian subcontinent. In the third millenium BC, the Aryans invaded from Central Asia. The Indus, which runs southward from the highlands of Central Asia and forms northwest India's natural border with continental Asia, would provide a route of invasion and migration into India for millennia to come. In the fourth and third centuries BC, the Maurya empire of the Indian subcontinent governed the region as far as Afghanistan. In the early centuries AD, the region of the Indus was invaded and ruled by the Kushans of Central Asia. Thenceforward, southeastward expansion from Asia would form the pattern up until British rule in the 19th century. In 711, Arabs invaded, establishing Islam in the region of Pakistan. Mahmud of Ghazni an Afghan warlord of the Abbasid Caliphate, continued the pattern of conquest from the northwest, conquering Sindh, crossing the Indus and plundering northern India. In the 13th century, the Mongol invasions penetrated the region from the north. In the early16th century, a Central Asian Muslim warlord took the region again. Babur established his rule from central Asia to northern India and founded the empire of the Moghuls which would last until British rule. The late 16th century saw a rare reversal of the pattern in which the Moghul emperor Akbar, from his base in northern India, reconquered Sindh and Afghanistan- establishing enlightened rule and an attempted synthesis of Hinduism and Islam. In the eighteenth century, even as Britain began to colonize India, Persian and Afghan Muslim warlords established brief empires extending south and east across the Indus and into northern, Moghul India. With the British occupation of Sindh, West Punjab, Baluchistan and the Northwest in the late 19th century, the old pattern of conquest from the northwest ended.

LOCATION OF NOTE:
The Wana Valley. The valley is named for Wana the capital of South Waziristan, where local followers of Islamist militant leader Maulana Fazlullah are scoring victories against police and Pakistani security forces- part of General Musharraf's justification for emergency rule. Wana was also the site of intense violence between British occupying troops and local tribesmen in the 1890s. Over a century later, it was at Wana, deep within the Waziristan tribal belt that news of local collaboration with the Taliban against the Pakistani army first emerged in 2004. From roughly the 17th to the first half of the 19th century, Waziristan was a remote, autonomous emirate, a stronghold of puritanical Islam in the Suleiman Mountains, on the shifting margins of the Mogul Empire of India. Between the Emir and the Sultan there was a loose relationship based on mutual military aid. During the 18th century, the Waziri Emirs maintained the same relation with the rulers of Afghanistan. By the time of the arrival of the British, in the late 19th century, the Waziris, a Pashtun people, looked toward Pashtun Afghanistan as their natural home. In South Waziristan, Pashtun Waziri and Mahsud tribesmen waged a long, sporadic guerilla war against the British who were determined to include the region in British India. Britain's attempts to define and map the area were hampered in 1894 when the escort of the Delimitation Commission came under attack from tribesmen at Wana. In 1894-95, during extensive military operations in Wana, the British suffered heavy casualties at the hands of the Mahsuds and the Waziris. After the murder of the British Commissioner of Construction and Communications, a Mr. Baros, the British Political Agent for Wana, obtained the arrest of several Waziri tribesmen and began to subjugate the population around Wana. That was when the charismatic Mahsud tribal and religious leader Mullah Powindah punished those who had collaborated in the arrests, demanded the prisoners' release and finally sent a tribal force to Wana which killed 100 British troops in a surprise attack. Over the long term, the tribes around Wana kept up resistance by means of pretended peace agreements with the British, which they would then subvert. In the 1930s, the British sent in 18,000 troops to counter an uprising in Wana where they had a headquarters and Air Base. After the creation of Pakistan, Islamabad came to use the same Agency system which the British had used to govern Waziristan at arm's length, leaving it otherwise autonomous. At present, Wana seems still to be the most complex and troublesome part of Waziristan. In 2005 Pakistan signed a truce with tribal leaders in South Waziristan and by 2006, the agency was more or less under the control of the Taliban and allied tribal groups, with the army largely restricted to their bases.The Ahmadzai, a sub-group of Waziri tribe in the Wana area, is said to be protecting Osama Bin Laden in the mountains north west of Wana. The same tribe is closely affiliated with the Taliban and Al Qaeda. But the ordinary tribal people of Wana still seem to value their autonomy above all else; they will support any group that guarantees it against an outside enemy and attack anyone, even an ally, who threatens it. On March 19, 2007, Wana tribesmen declared a Jihad against against Uzebek foreigners aligned with the Taliban and Al Qaeda. The guests, apparently, had made themselves unwelcome though bank robberies and brigandage. On April 7, tribal volunteers began dislodging the Uzbeks from the valleys around Wana and actually asked Pakistan to restore law and order.

PROFILE:
Mullah Powindah: religious leader of the Mehsud tribe in Waziristan who mounted resistance against the British around the turn of the century. (Powindah means 'nomad') .In 1894, Baros, the British agent at Wana discovered that one of his officers had been killed by Mehsud tribesman. After forcing Mehsud elders to hold a loya jirga, through which they identified, detained and handed over the guilty parties, Baros imprisoned the accused for seven years each. Mullah Powindah, the most powerful leader in Waziristan , arranged for the execution, for treason, of three of the Jirga members who had handed over the accused. He then demanded that Baros release the imprisoned tribesmen and warned the British to stay away from Wana. Baros ignored Powindah's warnings and on the nogjht of November 2nd, one thousand tribesmen of the Mehsuds and the Wazirs surrounded a encampment of British officers and killed one hundred of them. On December 14th, the British sent a larger force on a punitive expedition into Wazriristan, only to find the tribesmen dispersing and melting deeper into the mountains. It was a wiating game which, as usual, left the British helpless. By 1907, tribesmen were forbidden to enter certain British-controlled parts of Waziristan and the local Commander, Timothy, began a campaign to starve them out and hunt down and arrest Powindah. By his death in 1913, the tribes considered him de facto ruler of Waziristan and the most legendary leader of the tribal resistance.

CROSS-CENTURY SUMMARY:
The Pakistan region formally belongs to the Asian continent proper, while the adjoining Indian subcontinent has remained in many ways separate. Though invasions have mostly been conducted from Asia southward into the subcontinent itself, India retained the religion of Hinduism which had arrived from Asia as the Vedic relgion with the earliest Aryan conquests. Ever since, central and southern India have remained culturally distinct from Asia proper and no southward invasion ever succeeded in complete cultural control of the Hindu subcontinent. Islam, which arrived at the Indus in the early eighth century, would never spread much further than northern India. The Moghuls, who invaded from Central Asia in the 16th century and ruled the Pakistan area and India until the 19th century, formally established Islam in the Indus and in northern India, but never in all of India proper. The independence of Hindu India, combined with colonial European ideas of ethnic nationalism resulted in the separation of a northwestern Muslim state of Pakistan from a Hindu state in the subcontinent. Religous tensions, niherited from the time of secession and intensified with the Sunni revival of the 1980s and 1990s, have combined with the fragility of Pakistani democracy to produce almost chronic political instability.
'
EYE-WITNESS:
From Alastair Lawson's BBC report on 'Walk Warily in Waziristan', Captain Francis Stockdale's memoir of fighting inWaziristan in 1919: 'In 1919, a young British army officer, Francis Stockdale, was deployed to the Waziristan area of British India. The title of his book, "Walk Warily in Waziristan" seems no less appropriate now than it did 90 years ago, because today the autonomous Pakistani tribal region of North and South Waziristan is the centre of militancy orchestrated by pro-Taleban and al-Qaeda militants.It is also an area where many believe the al-Qaeda leader, Osama Bin Laden, may be hiding after the September 2001 World Trade Centre attacks. It wasn't until the 1980s that Capt Stockdale's family published a handful of copies of the book, only a few of which survive. But because or renewed interest in the region, the family in the English county of Norfolk are considering reprinting it. ..
The book provides a fascinating account of what was regarded then - as it is today - as a thoroughly dangerous area. One of the main towns close to Waziristan is Tank. Capt Stockdale describes it as being "the worst station in British India".
Waziristan landscape

"It was known as 'Hell's door knocker' because in the summer the temperature would rise so high that a village nearby rejoiced in the highest temperature in the world - a modest 131 degrees in the shade. But it was also an area where hostile tribesman waited, watched and pounced," he wrote. "My memories of Tank are characterised by sporadic outbreaks of rifle fire by night and spasmodic outbreaks of cholera during the day. The town fully deserved its poor reputation." Capt Stockdale goes on to describe just how dangerous the "hostile tribesmen" were in the Wana, the main town of South Waziristan, when a sniper infiltrated a British camp. "Like all tribesmen in this area, he was a marvellous shot," Capt Stockdale wrote, "and he killed the commanding officer with his first shot. "He killed or wounded 11 other men before his hiding place was discovered."...Ninety years ago, it seemed that British troops in Waziristan faced the same kind of dangers as Pakistani troops in the region do today. "One one occasion, tribesmen rolled down boulders in front of a military convoy - effectively cutting them off. I could hear the firing in the distance and there were lots of casualties." Getting captured, it seemed, was not an option: "It would result in death by torture, an activity which I was informed the tribal women folk used to luxuriate." The shortage of female company in these remote outposts of the British empire played heavily on officers and men alike. Capt Stockdale describes the lucky escape of one soldier who took to writing passionate letters to his wife and his mistress from a British encampment in the region that was surrounded by tribesmen. "Waiting for a target, they got bored and fired a bullet at random into the camp. It removed the digit finger of the man's right hand as he was writing to the loves of his life. "That incident kept me on the straight and narrow path for many months to come - not that there were many opportunities in Waziristan to be tempted or led astray!" A book packed with colourful reminiscences, Capt Stockdale describes many of his brother officers. These included Whipples, who wore a monocle every time the bullets started flying and specialised in using camels to provide supplies of whisky and gin in remote areas. "The tribesmen got Whipples in the end and I guarantee the monocle was in when the last bullet hit him," he wrote.
British soldiers in Waziristan
British soldiers were impressed by the ingenuity of the tribesmen
He also describes attempts by the Royal Flying Corps (RFC) to drop bombs on tribesmen encamped close to the border with Afghanistan. "Their bombs did not always explode upon hitting the earth and the tribesmen soon adapted themselves to shooting at flying targets. The pilots carried ransom papers, so if they were captured and returned to safety, the reward would be large." Some of the unexploded bombs dropped by the RFC were "collected by the tribesmen who used them to decorate their mud huts or houses". Local fighters in the 1920s were as tough then as they are now. "We often used to ask ourselves, how could they survive so long living in a rocky area, with a film of earth capable of growing only scrub trees?" Capt Stockdale ended up serving two years in Waziristan and considered himself lucky to be returning home.
"Many of my friends were killed, but I lived 60 years since then," he wrote.
Capt Stockdale - who was later promoted to be a major - died in 1989 aged 93.'
-Alastair Lawson, BBC News.

PRESENT SITUATION: It remains to be seen whether the ceasefire between Baitullah Mehsud and the Pakistan Army will result in a sea change in Pakistan's relations with South Waziristan or whether it will just be another in a century a half of truces which have have worked mostly to the advantage of Waziristan tribal leaders-- and now the tribal militants and the Taliban and Al Qaeda fighters whom they support.

PLUS CA CHANGE:
With the creation of Pakistan in 1947, the Waziristan tribes, led by the Faqir of Ipi, received arms from Afghanistan to support a move to declare a fully independent state of Pashtunistan in all the Pashtun borderlands, including Waziristan. Nevertheless, Pakistan retained Waziristan buy only conditionally: it paid subsidies to Waziri tribal chieftains. Sixty years later, Pakistan and militant Waziris are bargaining once agan.

CURIOSITY: In
1860, 3,000 Mehsud tribesmen launched an attack on the base of a British regiment in Tank, South Waziristan.

SEE ALSO :
(on Baitullah Mehsud) http://www.jamestown.org/terrorism/news/article.php?articleid=2370054

TIMELINE FOR THE HISTORY OF
PAKISTAN:

-the region west of India encompassing what is now Baluchistan, the Northwest Frontier, West Punjab and Sindh.

3000-1750 BC- the highly developed civilization of Mohenjo-Daro on the Indus River.

1500 –600 BC- migration of Indo-Aryan peoples into western and northern India. Vedic religion develops.

540-512- Persian conquests of northwest India.

327- Alexander the Great takes parts of northwest India.

The Mauryas

321-185 BC- the Mauryan empire- the subcontinent’s first state system which stretches from Afghanistan to southern India.

303 BC- the Greek successor to Alexander, Seleucus is expelled from northwest India and Afghanistan as Changragupta Maurya extends an empire of the central Ganges up to Kabul, Herat and Kandahar.

269-232 BC- 3rd Mauryan ruler, Ashoka, establishes Buddhism in the region.

The Kushans

1-200 AD- the Central Asian Kushan empire rules from north India to Afghanistan to Central Asia.

-the Kushans, caught between pressure from the Hsiang-Nu Chinese in the east and Persia in the west, invade Afghanistan and Sind before conquering part of northern India. The route southeast from central Asia to the Gangetic plain of northern India will be used for repeated invasions, the invaders always coming from the Afghan region and the north.

140 AD- Under Kanishka, the Kushan Empire extends into northern India. Afghanistan is divided between the Kushan Empire on the North and the Parthian empire to the south.

67 AD- the Kushan people, having prevailed from among the Yue Chi, form in force on the northern edges of Afghanistan and displace the Suren dynasty from northern India.

230 AD- the Kushan Empire dissolves into principlalities which rule until 400.

Islam

650 (circa) the Pratihara kingdom stops the Arabs of Sindh from overrunning Rajasthan.

711- Muslim Arabs conquer the Indus valley.

800- Western Afghanistan is the Khorasan region of the Abbasid Empire. Eastern Afghanistan, including Kabul and Kandahar is in the non-Islamic tribal region of the Indus. There is already a circular trade route anticipating the modern ring road from Kandahar to Kabul in the east to Balkh in the north and to Herat in the west.

1020- Mahmud of Ghazni (971-1030), an East Afghanistan Turkic warlord and mercenary for the Abbasid Muslims, is granted autonomy, as 'Sultan' to form his own dynasty.

1000-1027- in 17 raids, Mahmoud of Ghazni conquers a brigand's empire stretching from Kurdistan through Sindh to the Indus. Mahmoud's campaigns are against the Shia Fatimids and non-Muslims like Buddhists and Hindu India. Has a reputation as a bloodthirsty tyrant.

1173-1206- Muhammad of Ghur, another Turkic warlord from Central Asia, also takes Sindh, crosses the Indus, conquering all of northern India and establishing a capital at Delhi which is to remain the capital of Muslim India. His sultanate will last until the arrival of the Moghuls in 1526.

1221- Gengis Khan and the Mongols penetrate the Punjab region.

1296-1306- a subsequent Mongol invasion of northern India is repelled by the sultans of Delhi.

1300- the Valley of the Indis is ruled by the Delhi Sultanate.

1346-1564- Vijayanagar: the last Hindu resistance to Muslim rule.

1398- the central Asian Warlord, Tamerlane, takes Sindh, crosses the Indus and sacks Delhi.

The Moghuls.

1483- the Muslim conqueror Babur fails to establish a kingdom in his native Uzbekistan and instead takes Herat and Kandahar, making them the centre of his future empire.

1545- Kabul is annexed as a Moghul military and administrative area.

1526-761- the region was ruled by the Moghul Emperors.

1526- Babur, the first Moghul, invades India, takes the Gangetic plain and founds the Moghul Empire in India.. A Central Asian warlord, his Moghul empire includes Afghanistan and India.

1540-1545- Babur’s son Humayun loses control to the Afghan chieftan Sher Shah.

1546- battle of Panipat: Humayun’s son Akbar the Great recovers the area from the Afghans, extending it to Deccan.

1542-1605- in a rare reversal of the pattern of invasion, Akbar reasserts control over northern India and crosses the Indus to conquer Sindh and Afghanistan. Liberal and enlightened, he establishes tolerance and attempts to form a synthethis of Hinduism and Islam called the Divine Faith.

1585- the Sikhs are autonomous in the region of Lahore, Pakistan.

1658-1707- the Mogul emperor Aurangzeb pushes the boundaries of the empire southward.

The Marathas- coastal Western India.

1659- Shivaji (1627-1680) gathers local hill-dwellers of Bijapur against the Moghuls. The Moghuls send a force against him but he defeats them.

1660s- Shivaji gains power- his locality growing as a “robber state” by extracting protection money.

1674-1680- Shivaji makes himself Raja of Maratha kingdom in west India as the Moghul empire declines.

-the Emperor Aurangzeb’s defence of the Muslims at the expense of the Hindus leads to war with the Marathas.

The British

1700-1800- the British consolidate their trading power in India through the East India company, taking advantage of the weakened Moghul emperor, Aurangzeb, and make India a British colony.

Nadir Shah

1738- Nadir Shah of Persia invades Afghanistan and northern India, his empire lasting only until his assassination in 1747.

Ahmad Shah

1747- Ahmad Shah (of the Saddozai family, Abdali clan) commander of Nadir's body guard, takes the name Durrani, meaning 'Pearl of the Age' and establishes the Durrani dynasty of Afghanistan, unites varied tribes in southern Afghanistan around their common link: the Pashtun language. He invades the Gangetic plain of India conquering and weakening the last Moghul emperor Aurangzeb. The modern Afghan nation begins to take shape. His empire extends from near the Caspian Sea to India.

-1750- under British and Afghan pressure, the Moghul empire shrinks to an area around Delhi.

-in west, coastal India, the Maratha empire becomes a confederacy of leading local families: Bhonsle, Gaekwad, Holkar and Sindia) under hereditary ministers (Peshwas).

-the Peshwa of Maratha asks for British intervention to settle an internal dispute.

1761- Ahmad Shah defeats the Marathas of India at Panipat

1775-82- first British-Maratha war.

1803-1805- second British-Maratha war.

1818- the Marathas destroyed in a third war with the British.

British Acquire Sindh, Punjab.

-1840s- the region fell under British rule.

1849- -the British atke over the Frontier region from the Sikhs. the Deputy Commissioner, Dera Ismail Khan (NWFP)and Bannu controls all political matters in Waziristan- even though the tribes of neighbouring North Waziristan are under the sovereignty of the Kabul government.

-in Waziristan on the border with Afghanistan, two Pashtun tribes, the Waziris and the Mahsuds use the mountainous region to resist British rule.

1860- 3000 Mahsud tribesmen attack a British regiment base in Tank (present South Waziristan).

1876- Baluchistan becomes a British protectorate.

-birth of Mohammed Jinnah.

1890- the British acquire west Punjab.

1893- the British acquire northern Balushistan.

1893-November , the Emir of Afghanistan signs a treaty renouncing all claims to Waziristan and the North West Frontier territories.

1893- the Durand line forms the limit of British territorial expansion into the Pashtun territories of Afghanistan. The Pashtun region, which had once defined Afghanistan, is split by the new boundary with Afghanistan. Western Pakistan is ceded to British India.

The Durand Line cuts through both Baloch and Pashtun tribes.

1894-95- Extensive British military operations against tribal insurgents in Waziristan.

1904- large scale disturbances in SouthWaziristan resulting murder of the Political Agent and Militia Commandant at Sarwakai

1906- founder of Pakistan, Mohammed Jinnah, joins the Indian National Congress.

1910- North Waziristan is made by the British into a full fledged agency

- the Durand line allows for the border territory of Waziristan to be autonomous, outside of effective British rule. Instead, the British ruled by paying subsidies to tribal chieftains.

-otherwise, the Pakistan region remains generally loyal to the British Raj; its inhabits fare relatively well under the British Raj and are well represented in the army and in government.

-but in northern India, where Muslims fare less well, the Muslim League is formed. Its leader, Jinnah, demands greater rights for Indian Muslims.

1913- in India, Mohammed Jinnah joins the Muslim League.

1915- because of the stresses of World War I, the Brtish make a peace deal in Waziristan. But instead, Waziri tribes attack, inflicting heavy losses on the British. The British retalliate with aerial ombardment.

1919- British road building and fortification i Waziristan only results in more bloody tribal attacks.

1919- the Third Afghan War. Pashtun tribes under Afghan warlord Ananullah, on both sides of the Durand line, defeat the British. The British concede nationhood to Afghanistan by the Treaty of Kabul. Ananullah attempts westernizing reforms.

The Hindu Indian National Congress vs. the Muslim League.

1930s- Ghandi’s vastly Hindu Indian National Congress, makes it more urgent for the Muslims in the north to form some sort of defensive association.

-as Muslims become marginalized, Mohammed Jinnah steps up the rhetoric of the Muslim League.

1931- seeing little hope in the face of the INC, Jinnah resigns.

1935- Jinnah returns to the Muslim League under popular pressure and reorganizes it along nationalist lines.

1935- the Government of India Act is established and will become Pakistan’s constitution in 1947.

1937- the Muslim league fares badly in Indian elections.

1940, March 23- The Pakistan or Lahore Resolution- Muslims declare that if their lot doesn’t improve, they’ll move toward creating a separate homeland. This is especially popular in the Muslim majority states of the northwest.

1945-1946- the Muslim league makes a powerful showing in provincial elections in India.

-Lord Mountbatten urges the secession of Pakistan.

Indian Independence, Formation of Pakistan.

1947- India becomes independent.

1947- Britain agrees to the formation of an independent Pakistan, separate from India.

-on partition of the sub-continent , the tribal leaders of Waziristan agreed to be a part of Pakistan, but with special terms and conditions.

15 August- Pakistan becomes independent, comprising Sindh, Punjab and North-West Frontier with the Durand line remaining as the border between the two nations. The border still cuts through the region of the Pashtun people- despite Afghan claims on the entire Pashtun region, which includes much of the Baluchistan region of western Pakistan. Before departing the British had drawn the frontier between west Pakistan and India in haste, forcing bordering principlalities to join either India or Pakistan.

-As Governor General, Mohammed Jinnah is Pakistan’s first head of state.

-East Pakistan formerly East Bengal, 1000 miles distant, is included in the new Pakistan.

-an exodus of about 5 million Sikhs and Hindus from West Pakistan into India.

1947- after much bloodshed, the western region separates from India to from the independent Muslim state of West Pakistan, and, on the other side of India in East Bengal, of East Pakistan.

-tension develops between populous East Pakistan and the dominance of West Pakistan which has the vast majority of educated government personnel

-North West Pakistan remains restive because of a history of devout Islam and relative autonomy under the British, while Pnjab has a history of close participation in the British administration.

-unable to find a constituion to govern its discordant entities, Pakistan will be governed by the Government of India act until 1956.

-August 14, 1947- death of Mohammed Jinnah, founder of Pakistan.

Pakistan-Afghan Tensions


-Afghan king Zahir Shah claims the Pathan (western Pashtun) state from Pakistan. Meanwhile, he extracts support from both the US and the Soviet Union

--the Waziristan tribes, led by the Faqir of Ipi, receive arms from Afghanistan which agitates for a fully independent Pashtunistan of all pashtun borderlands, including Waziristan.

-but Waziristan frnally becomes part of Pakistan with Pakistani independence. Pakistan still rules Waziristan as the British did, with subsidied paid to tribal chieftains.

1948 -Afghanistan opposes formation of Pakistan, refusing to accept the Durand line- starting rivalry between them.

-Pakistan moves thousands of Pashtuns into the border area as a bulwark between Baluchis and Afghanistan

Kashmir

-the Raja of Kashmir, Hari Singh, a Hindu, finds himself ruling an area with a Muslim majority. After a Pakistan-supported Muslim uprising in west Kashmir, India offers help, provided that Kashmir then becomes part of India. Pakistan, angey that it wasn;t consulted, supports the Muslim insurgents.

1949- the UN brokers a caesefire in Pakistan’s skirmish with India over Jammu and Kashmir. A planned UN-sponsored pleiscite over the fate of the area is never held.

1949- Cease-fire Line of Control (LOC) drawn between Kashmir and Pakistan

1950- Ayub Khan appointed first chief of the Pakistan military.

1956- Mar 23- Pakistan, heretofore governed by the Government of India Act, is proclaimed an Islamic republic and gets its own constitution.

1958- Oct 7- President Iskander Mirza annuls the constitution and declares martial law, turning powers over to army chief Ayub Khan.

Ayub Khan

1958- Ayub Khan, frustrated by the democratic process, takes power in a coup d’etat, abolishing Pakistan’s newfound constitution and democracy.

1958- Zulfikar Ali Bhutto joins cabinet as minister of commerce.

1962- Ayub Khan brings in a new constitution enacting "basic democracy" or local democracy while abolishing democracy at the national level.

1963- Ali Bhutto becomes foreign minister.

1965- war breaks out as India occupies Muslim Kashmir. Russia’s Kosygin brokers a caese-fire.

1967- after expulsion from cabinet, Ali Bhutto founds his own secular democratic party.

1969- Ayub Khan resigns due to economic difficulties.

1970- democratic elections. Yahya Khan is president/
Civil War with East Pakistan

1971- When East Pakistan’s Awammi league wins the elections, West Pakistan, under Yahya Khan refuses to recognize the result. East Pakistan breaks away from West Pakistan in a civil war and becomes independent as Bangladesh.

-the civil war embraces Kashmir. India intervenes on behalf of Mujibur Rahman and the Awami League.

-fighting breaks out on the western India-Pakistan frontier.

Ali Bhutto

-Zulfikar Ali Bhutto elected president- begins in a populist, socialist regime. He brings in nationalization and financial independence from the US.

1972- India prevails in an uneasy peace. Cease-fire line between Kashmir and Pakistan (Line of Control) reasserted. Under the Simla agreement both sides agree to settle future disputes by negotiation.

1973- due to the OPEC oil crisis, Pakistan is thrown into economic turmoil.

1974- India tests its first nuclear bomb.

General Zia Ul Haq overthrows the Bhuttos

1977- right wing and Islamist opposition to Bhutto leads to a military coup by General Zia Ul-Haq.
1977-1984 after returning from her education at Oxford, Benazir Bhutto, daughter of Ali Bhutto is sentenced to house arrest.

1978- Prime Minister Ali Bhutto is arrested by Zia Ul Haq's regime on charges of corruption and murder.

July 5- Bhutto is released.

July 29- Bhutto begins campaigning for his return to power.

Sept 3- Bhutto is re-arrested and freed on bail September 13.

Sept 17- Bhutto is imprisoned.

Oct 24.- Bhutto is tried for vote rigging, corruption and the murder of a political opponent.

1979- April 4- after being sentenced to death, Bhutto is hanged.

1978-1988 Zia Ul Haq becomes president, imposes martial law, prohibits political activity and introduces Sharia.

On behalf of U.S., Pakistan backs the Afghan Mujehadeen against the Soviets.

1979- Zia ul Haq repairs US relations by backing the US- supported Afghan Muhehadeen against the Soviet invasion. US support leads to high economic growth throughout the 1980s.

-Pakistan takes on 3 million Afghan refugees.

1984- Benazir Bhutto exiled to England with her mother. Benazir takes leadership of the PPP, the Pakistan People’s Party.

-the US arms Pakistan to back the Afghan Mujehadeen against the Soviet Union. This escalates the arms race between India and Pakistan.

-Quetta, Baluchstan becomes a base for Afghan Mujehadeen fighting the Societs.

-Sunni radical madrassas of Pakistan supported by Saudi Arabia, that began in the 1980s- were seen as a bulwark against Iran. They in turn gave rise to the Taliban. So the taliban arose from the confrontnation of Saudi Arabia with Iran.

-in south Asia, Shia were assertive- so India and pakistan (largest Shia pop at 30 million, after Iran) became the battleground of Saudi-Iranian rivalry in the 80s and 90s.

-India and Pakistan have both acquired nuclear weapons.

1986- the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation is established and relieves tension between the two nuclear powers.

Return of Benazir Bhutto

1986- Benazir Bhutto returns to Pakistan and campaigns for fair elections. She marries in 1987.

1980s-1990s- Islamist groupb Lashkar-e-Toiba first fights Soviets in Afghanistan then switches to Kashmir

1988- President Zia Ul-Haq killed at Dhaka in a plane crash.

-Ul Haq’s successor, President Ishaq Khan brings back democracy.

Benazir Bhutto Prime Minister.

1988- Aslam Beg of the Inter Services Intelligence Agency (ISI) forms a coalition of religious parties (the IJI) against Bhutto. When the relgious coaltion loses, the ISI throws its support behind her rival, Nawaz Sharif, then Chief Minister of Punjab.

1988- Benazir Bhutto elected Prime Minister. She takes Pakistan back into the Commonwealth.

1990- constant challenges from a conservatrive presidency leads to the dismissal of Benzir’s Bhutto’s government. She is charged with corruption charges in an offensice believed to be backed by the ISI. Her husband is also placed under arrest for corruption.

Bhutto Ousted.

1990- ISI brokers another coalition against Bhutto and raises large amounts of money to back Sharif gainst Bhutto

-Nawaz Sharif succeeds Benazir Bhutto as prime minister in an election believed to have been rigged with the assistance of the ISI.

1991- unrest in Sindh. Meanwhile Benazir Bhutto goes on an international lecture tour

1990s- internal instability due to constant charges of political corruption.

Bhutto re-elected.

1993- Benazir Bhutto leads opposition to Nawaz Sharif,

-Bhutto elected prime minister of a coalition government. Her regime is plagued by crime, the drugs trade, separatist unrest in Balushistan and Sindh and tribal unrest in the north west frontier.

- after her election, Bhutto is forced to relinquish all decision-making on nuclear matters to the army, in return for its support.

-Bhutto goes on to purge much of the military general staff of ISI supporters. As a result the military chief, Aslan Beg, (a loyalist of the one-time Zia Ul Haw distatorship) gets her excluded from all military decision-making.

-Harkat ul Ansar for Kahsmir Liberation, founded with the help, arms and training of the ISI-. It is a fusion of two Afhgan Jihadist groups Harkat ul Jihad al-Islami and Harkat ul Mujahideen. The leader of harkat ul Absar si Amjad Farooqi.

-the British-made Durand line lapses after 100 years.. Tribal leaders don’t recognize it. It is said to be "marked out on water'. Pakistan wants Kabul to accept the line. Kabul is reluctant to lose its claim to "south Pashtunistan." (Balushistan)

1994- the Taliban, bolstered and supported (and some say, founded) by Pakistan’s Inter Services Intelligence Agency (ISI) in Quetta, Pakistan,- crosses into Afghanistan and takes Kandahar .

-the Taliban refuse to accept the Durand line that determines the border with Pakistan.

Bhutto Dismissed.

-1995- Bhutto encourages the formation of the Taliban, seeing it as a friendly Muslim party that will link Pakistan to trade with Central Asia.

1996- Benazir Bhutto’s government is dismissed by President Leghari on new charges of corruption and mismanagement.

1997- Feb. Benazir Bhutto is defeated in elections. She is succeeded by Nawaz Sharif and becomes leader of the opposition.

-Sharif removes a constitutional amendment which gives the president the power to dismiss the prime minister.

1998- Sharif resists pressure from the army to allow the generals a say in government.

Oct. 1- Sharif brings in Islamic law.

1999- Benazir Bhutto removed as a member of parliament and along with her husband is tried, fined and sentenced for corruption.

-Benazir Bhutto chooses self-imposed exile in Dubai.

1999- Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, though democratically elected, puts water and power under the control of the army.

-Sharif begins to establish Islamic law throughout the country, despite widespread protest.

-Sharif withdraws the army from Kashmir and dismisses its head, General Musharraf, angering the army.

-Musharraf dismisses Sharif. Sharif agrees to go into exile rather than face criminal charges.

General Musharraf seizes power.

-General Musharraf takes power in a military coup. Musharraf suspends the constitution, asserts control over the judiciary and parliament.

The Lahore Declaration and Renwed Problems in Kashmir.

1999-Lahore Declaration. India and Pakistan swear to settle differences by negotiation.

1999- 600 Islamic militia from Pakistan occupy Indian Kashmir, provoking retaliatory air strikes from India.

9/11: Musharaff Sides with Washington.

2001- after the 9/11 attacks, Washington coerces Musharraf into supporting the US War on terror. But this gains Pakistan badly needed international loans.

-India and Pakistan mass troops along the LOC as tensions build again in Kashmir.

-to placate angry Islamists, Musharraf takes a softer policy on Kashmir.

-PPP member Raza Gillani convicted by Musharraf's anti-corruption court of making illegal government appointments. He serves five years in jail. The PPP claims the prosecution was aimed at forcing PPP members to join the Musharraf government

-Dec 13, - attack on Indian parliament carried out by Pakistan-based militant groups, Jaish e Mohammed and Lashkar-e-Toiba

2002- after the US invasion of Afghanistan, the Taliban are pushed into the border tribal areas of Baluchistan.

-Pakistan begins a troop build-up along the border with Afhganistan.

-Pakistan's Inter Services Intelligence Agency (ISI) helps to form the the King's Party a coalition of Pakistan Muslim parties to back his election as president. The MMA, a large alliance of religious parties, the King's Party and Bhutto's PPP are the largest parties in parliament.

-many believe the MMA was patched together by the ISI to support Musharraf.

-the MMA forms an alliance with the 'King;s party' to back Musharraf in the elections.

Musharraf Consolidates Power, extends Dictatorship,

-Musharraf wins presidential elections. He gains 5 more years in office in a referendum criticized as unconstitutional and biased. He awards himself sweeping new powers.-2002- Musharraf election.

-after Musharraf is elected, an amenndment known as the 'legal framework order' gives him a five year term plus the power over many civil institutions and the power to dismiss national and state assemblies. The MMA is indispensable in getting the 'Legal Framework Order' passed into law. The parliament becomes Musharraf's instrument.

-Musharraf bans the Islamist groups Lashkar-e-Toiba and Jaish-e-Mohammad.

-Parliamentary elections result in a deadlock with increased power for the religious parties.

-Pakistan tests missiles that have nuclear capability.

Daniel Pearl.

-Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl is murdered in Karachi by decapitation while investigating local links to the 9/ll attack. His killer , Ahmed Omar Saeed Sheikh of the
Jaish e Mohammed Islamist group is later arrested and executed.

The Islamist Threat and the ISI

2003- the Northwest Frontier Province votes for Sharia law.

-when Misharraf considers cracking down on the Taliban, his main supporter, the MMA sponsors mass demonstrations and thretens to withdraw its support

-Washington asks the ISI to hand over al Qaeda militants, but the ISI only hands over foreign Al Qaeda foot soldiers.

-ceasefire between India and Pakistan in Kashmir.

-Dec. attempt on Musharraf’s life as his motorcade is bombed.

-2003-2004- winter. The Pakistan army launches assaults against the Taliban and al Qaeda in Waziristan.

2004- nuclear scientist Abdul Qadeer Khan admits to having leaked nuclear secrets to North Korea. He is placed under house arrest to placate Washington.

-Sunni-Shia violence in Karachi.

-March and June offensives against al Qaeda in the Afghan border area.

-Musharraf extends his term as head of the army.

- assassination attempt on Pakistan Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz.

-afer Islamist leader Amjad Farooqi is killed in shoot out with police in Karachi, Matiur Rehman takes his place.

-Matiur Rehman -alleged to have been involved in bombing of the Sheraton Hotel in Karachi.

2004-2005- due to losses in the Waziristan offensive against the Taliban and al Qaeda, Pakistan makes various peace deals with local Taliban-supporting tribes. The Taliba effectively control Waziristan.

-Dec. 2005- Abu faraj al-Libbi- al Queada leader No. 3- involved in an attempt on Musharraff at Rawalpindi. Libbi is arrested in Mardan. Matiur Rehman is wanted in connection ith the same plot.

-July 2005- Rehman invovled in another plot on Musharraf- disrupted by police.

2005- Baluchistan tribal militants bomb natural gas plant, forcing its closure.

-after July transit bombings in London, 200 militants from radical madrasas and elsewhere are detained in Pakistan

-an earthquake kills tens of thousands in Muzaffarabad.

2006- Pakistani civilians killed in a US missile strike near the Pakistan border in Waziristan.

15-17 Feb.- Afghan President Karzai visits Musharaff to ask him to stop Taliban infiltration from Pakistan. Karzai identifies Afghan commaders in Quetta among other areas of Pakistan. Musharraf says Afghan intelligence is unreliable and complains to Karzai about weapons smuggling into Bluchistan.

-Feb-March- Sunni-Shia violence in Karachi.

-March- attack on the US consulate kills State Dept FSO David Foy . Matiur Rehman is a leading suspect in planning the attack. Jundullah, reportedly led by Rahaman, may have been involved.

mid-July- Pakistani gov't orders crackdown on Taliban: police arrest more than 200 Afghans in Baluchistan- allegedly many were not Taliban.
The London Airline Terror PLot.

-Aug. 2- Pakistani security arrests Rashid Rauf in attempted London airline bombings. Still at large, his superior, Matiur Rehman worked as deputy for Amjad Farooqi’s Harkat ul Ansar- for Kahsmir Liberation

-Pakistan's SSG discovers through the arrest of Rashid Rauf that Lakshar –e- Toiba is linked to a terror group in the UK. Lashkar-e-Toyaba is also blamed for the Mumbai train bombings in July.

-many of the 9 London airline plot suspects arrested in Pakistan are 'facilitators' linked to Jiash e Mohammed and Lashkar e Toiba which provide safe houses and funds.

-Sept- Pakistan signs a treaty in Waziristan with the Taliban, promising that the army will withdraw to its bases, provided that the Taliban restrict their attacks to Afghanistan.

-Oct. -many of the British Pakistanis later suspected in the August 2006 attempted airline bombings in London travelled to Muzaffarabad as humanitarian earthquake relief in Jamiat ud Dawa, whose umbrella organization is Lashakr e Toiba. Membrs of the al Qaeda-linked Jundullah, a Pakistani terror group took them to training camps in Waziristan before returning to relief camps.

Oct. -raid on a seminary in Bajaur in the border tribal agencies, kills up to 80. Anti-government protests follow.

-Oct. -many of the British Pakistanis later suspected in the August 2006 attempted airline bombings in London travelled to Muzaffarabad as humanitarian earthquake relief in Jamiat ud Dawa, whose umbrella organization is Lashakr e Toiba. Membrs of the al Qaeda-linked Jundullah, a Pakistani terror group took them to training camps in Waziristan before returning to relief camps.

The Red Mosque.

2007- Pakistan rejects US claims that al Qaeda members are hiding in Pakistan.

-January- tensions increase around the radical Red Mosque in Islamabad.
-Feb-April- local tribes in Waziristan turn against foegin Taliban fighters for criminal activities and disrupting public order.

-Feb- the Mariott hotel in Islamabad is bombed.

-the New-Dehhi, India-Lahore Pakistan train is bombed, killing 68, mostly Pakistanis.

Musharraf Dismisses Chief Justice Chaudhoury

-9 March-mass protests follow Musharraff’s suspension of Pakistan’s Chief Justice Iftakar Mohammed Choudhury for abuse of power.

-March-April- 250 killed in clashes between South Waziristan tribesmen and al Qaeda militants.

April- protests increase against the dismissal of Justice Chouhury.

-12 May- several killed in rival demonstrations in Karachi over the dismissal of Justice Choudhury.


The Red Mosque

-June- followers of Islamabad’s Red Mosque Islamist leader al-Ghazi attempt to impose Sharia law on the city.

-11 July- after a week-long stand off, security forces storm and seize the Red Mosque, killing over 80 militants.

-in the wake of the assault on the red Mosque, Waziristan and Pakistan erupt in revenge suicide and bomb attacks. In response to the violence and to US threats to pursue the Taliban inside Pakistan, Musharraf resume the military campaign inside Waziristan.

-20 July- the Supreme Court reinstates Justice Choudhury

-9 August- Musharraf decides against emergency rule.

The Return of Benazir Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif.

-23 Aug. the Supreme Court decides exiled oppostion leader Nawaz Sharif can return to Pakistan.

Sept. 8- General Musharraf has Sharif arrested upon his return to Pakistan. Sharif is exiled again to Saudi Arabia- in defiance of the Supreme Court's August ruling.

-14 September- Bhutto says she will return from exile in London in mid-October.

-16 September- Pakistan's electoral commission amends a clause stating that a government servant cannot run for office without first being retired from their position for two years. A public servant can now run without leaving office. The amended clause would allow President Musharraf to run again for president. Musharraf's term as president expires November 15.

-18 September- presidential lawyers say that Musharraf will step down as army chief only if he is elected president.

-Oct. 5-in a deal with Musharraf opposition PPP leader Benazir Bhutto agrees to abstain rather than to boycott the Pakistan election if the charges against her are dropped before she returns from exile in London.

-Oct. 6- Musharraf sweeps the elections.

-almost 200 are killed in fighting in North Waziristan as government forces fight Taliban and Taliban and al-Qaeda-aligned Islamist groups.

Attempt on Bhutto Upon her Return.

-Oct. 12- 2 suicide bombs directed at Bhutto's convoy from airport, kill donzens, upon her return from British exile.

-November- Musharraf declares emergency rule claiming Islamist threats to the government. Opponents charge him with attempting to lengthen his dictatorship as he uses the emergency to sack the Supreme Court on the eve of its decision about the legitimacy of his election as president while still chief of the army.

-Bhutto placed under house arrest as she plans a march against emergency rule.

-Musharraff says he will work with Bhuttto.

-Musharraf brings in a caretaker government.

-the chief election commissioner determines that elections for Prime Minister will be held on January 8, 2008.

-the election commission ratifies Musharraf's second five-year term in office.

-Nawaz Sharif allowed to return from exile.

-Musharraf hands over command of the Armed Forces to General Ashfaq Kayani.

-Bhutto says she may boycott the January 8 election.

-December 15- Musharraf ends the state of emergency, restores constitution.

Assassination of Benazir Bhutto

-December 27- Bhutto is shot to death as suicide bombers hit her retinue after a rally in Rawalpindi.

2008- January -Musharraf postpones January 8 elections to February 18 due to instability.

-20 police killed at an anti-Musharraf rally outside the High Court in Lahore.

-the army kills 90 tribal militants in South Waziristan.

-Jan 20- arrests by Pakistan security point to Baitullah Mehsud as mastermind behind assassination of Benazir Bhutto.

-Feb 1- Taliban leader Libbi reported killed by army in Pakistan.

-Feb 8- Tribal militant Baitullah Mehsud makes truce with Pakistan Army as part of a Taliban strategy to redirect the war on Afghanistan.

Victory of the PPP and the PML-N in Parliamentary Elections.

-Feb 18- the PPP and the PML-N sweep parliamentary elections, reducing Musharraf's PML Q.
The PPP's Asif Bhutto and the PML-N's Nawaz Sharif consider a coalition to oust Musharraf.

-March 25- reza Gillani becomes Prime Minister of Pakistan.

-April 24- militant South Waziristan leader, Baitulla Mehsud makes truce with government- orders attacks to cease. Pakistany troops inted to withdraw from South Waziristan.
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