Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Pakistan to launch operations in Waziristan?

Some in the western press (here & here, for example) have been reporting yesterday that Pakistan has agreed to launch operations against elements of the Taliban in the area of North Waziristan, otherwise known as ‘outlaw country’.  This apparently in response to pressure from Hillary Clinton & ADM Mullen during the recent visit to Pakistan, otherwise characterised as ‘frosty’.  The reports, though, if one checks closely enough, seem to involve Iran, though some trace it to a local paper in Waziristan.

A common tactic during the Cold War was for the Soviets to have a news report - disinformation or dezinformatsiya - backing their aims printed in a supportive news source in a target area, with a view to have other papers pick up the story.  The Soviets would then report it in Izvestia & TASS as fact, when it started out as propaganda.  I expect that the Iranians don’t need much instruction in that regard.

Now this from a few hours ago in Pakistan, refuting the claim:
A top army commander on Wednesday ruled out an imminent offensive in North Waziristan, contradicting a newspaper report that Pakistan had agreed to assault North Waziristan following pressure from the United States.
We’ll have to see how this plays out.

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