Pak Army, ISI unwilling to take on Taliban despite being their direct target

Last Updated: Wed, Mar 09, 2011 06:00 hrs

The Pakistani military and the nation's premier spy agency Inter-Services Intelligence have shown reluctance to take on the conglomerate of terror groups inside Pakistan despite being their direct target.

The explosion at a compressed natural gas (CNG) filling station situated near an intelligence agency's office in Faisalabad on Tuesday, which killed at least 32 people, was the 19th attack by the Taliban and allied terror groups against military, police, and intelligence facilities in Pakistan's large cities since March 2009, The Long War Journal reports.

Earlier, a teenage suicide bomber had killed 31 army recruits at the Punjab Regiment Center in the city of Mardan on February 10, while a suicide assault team penetrated security at the Crime Investigation Department headquarters in Karachi last November, killing 17 people.

The Taliban and allied terror groups have struck at targets such as military and police training facilities, intelligence headquarters for the ISI and the Federal Investigation Agency, a weapons complex that houses nuclear weapons components, and even the Pakistani Army General Headquarters in Rawalpindi and the Navy Headquarters in Islamabad, the report said.

Thirteen of the major attacks against security installations took place in 2009, four occurred in 2010, and there have been two major attacks so far this year, it added.

The Taliban have also carried out hundreds of smaller attacks against police stations and army checkpoints, police and army patrols, and other targets, including government buildings, mosques, shrines, religious processions, and hospitals, during that same time period.

But despite the direct targeting of security and intelligence agencies by the Taliban, the Pakistani military and the ISI have shown an unwillingness to take on the conglomerate of terror groups inside Pakistan.

The military and the ISI have selectively targeted what they consider to be "bad Taliban," such as the Movement of the Taliban in Pakistan and elements of the Lashkar-e-Jhangvi.

The report said that they refuse to deal with the so-called "good Taliban" and groups like the Lashkar-e-Taiba and Jaish-e-Mohammed, as these groups are seen as assets to be used against India and in Afghanistan.(ANI)

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