Baitullah Mehsud

BY Herschel Smith
5 years, 8 months ago

We have provided analysis of Baitullah Mehsud, the center of gravity of the globalist jihad movement in the Taliban controlled areas of Pakistan, head of the Tehrik-i-Taliban (TTP) and more powerful by far than al Qaeda.  The Guardian has an exposé on Baitullah that is so good and extensive that several quotes will be provided below (the entire article is recommended reading), followed by brief analysis.

… after five years of germination, the disparate forces behind most of these attacks formally merged into the Pakistan Taliban (TTP) under the leadership of an illiterate 35-year-old commander, Baitullah Mehsud, confirming western suspicions that the epicentre of global jihad had shifted. Soon militias allied to the new grouping had permeated all of Pakistan’s border regions, even the northern ski slopes and trout streams of the former tourist haven of Swat …

“From the 26 suicide attacks where we recovered a head in 2007, we made a startling discovery,” says the Sig analyst. “The vast majority [of suicide bombers] came from just one tribe, the Mehsuds of central Waziristan, all boys aged 16 to 20.” Until the Sig team analysed the 2007 bombings, no one realised how successful the Pakistan Taliban leader Baitullah Mehsud had been in recruiting his extended clan to the martyrdom business …

The officer found out more when a few Mehsud boys, who escaped a suicide training camp, recently contacted him. “They told me, ‘We have nothing. Simple things would make a difference. We are fond of football. Give us a ball and we won’t bomb.’ ” The officer is working to recruit informers, but tentatively. Those who resist Baitullah Mehsud have been brutally dealt with – like the 600 elders who spoke out against him in 2005 and were, according to Pakistani journalist Ahmed Rashid, each sent a needle, black thread and 1,000 rupees with which to buy some cloth to stitch their own shrouds; all of them were then killed

“The suicide bombers would be nothing without the bomb makers,” says Pervez, describing how men in caves and cowsheds, operating with a generator, a soldering iron and a pair of pliers, have become eminently adaptable. What the Sig proved was the axiom that today’s Islamic war zones inter-relate, how advice is passed down the line, in knapsacks and saddlebags, in encrypted computer files, in postcards and even in love letters. After insurgents in Iraq began to use mobile phones to detonate roadside bombs in the summer of 2003, the same technique emerged in Pakistan, deployed in one of the two assassination attempts on Musharraf in December. However, as western intelligence agencies caught up, developing high-frequency jammers to block the phone signals, the bombers changed tactics. Pervez says: “In Pakistan they returned to older techniques, using a 300-rupee [£2.50] wireless doorbell to send a low-frequency signal for which no one had thought to make a jammer” …

In the 80s, when Pervez was a young officer, the military and ISI had established hundreds of Sunni madrasas in southern Punjab that were aligned to a strict revivalist sect, the Deobandis, similar to the Wahhabis in Saudi Arabia. On graduation, most of these students were funnelled by the ISI into the secret war against the Soviets in Afghanistan, used to target Pakistan’s minority Shia population or infiltrated Indian Kashmir. “All the groups we are familiar with today came out of this process, and by the late 90s these men had had more consistent exposure to war than most officers in premier league armies in Europe” …

The closer you get to Baitullah Mehsud, the more of his strategy you can see. He is estimated to need one billion rupees (£8.6m) a year to keep his operations going. “It’s Jihadi Inc out here,” one senior police officer says. Among the Pakistan Taliban’s most recent recruits are a serial killer and two criminal dons, all of whom have been invited to become commanders. The officer says: “Mehsud’s Talibs now act like criminals, too, mounting a protection racket, charging road tolls, stealing fuel at gunpoint, blackmailing communities.”

They reach out across Pakistan. After arresting Qasim Toori, a wanted villain, in Shah Latif town, southeast Karachi, in January 2008, police learned he had been sent by Baitullah with 19 Taliban fighters to begin a crime wave. In Toori’s most successful raid, on October 30 2007, he held up the Bank al-Habib and stole 5m rupees (£43,000), money that was used to buy arms from al-Qaida. Baitullah’s men simultaneously began kidnapping …

Commentary & Analysis

When behind-the-times television analysts refer to al Qaeda who is being given safe haven in Pakistan, they fundamentally miss the point.  The globalist jihad movement of al Qaeda has been absorbed into the TTP of Pakistan.  The TTP shout to passersby in Khyber “We are Taliban! We are mujahedin! “We are al-Qaida!”  There is no distinction.  A Pakistan interior ministry official has even said that the TTP and al Qaeda are one and the same.

Baitullah Mehsud is not only the unchallenged master of the Tehrik-i-Taliban movement in Pakistan and across the border into Afghanistan, and he is essentially the head of not only a terror state, but also of a criminal enterprise worth 1E9 rupees annually (21 million dollars annually).

The group he leads is adaptive and improvisational with regards to their tactics, techniques and procedures.  They are even more experienced in war than the Pakistan Army, and certainly more so than most of the NATO forces in Afghanistan.

As for their global vision, Mehsud has said “We want to eradicate Britain and America, and to shatter the arrogance and tyranny of the infidels. We pray that Allah will enable us to destroy the White House, New York, and London.”

Baitullah Mehsud and the Tehrik-i-Taliban are not just dangerous; concerning the future of global jihad and the security of the West, they are – without rival – enemy #1.

Prior:

Pakistan Declares Baitullah Mehsud Patriot

Kidnapping: The Taliban’s New Source of Income

Tehrik-i-Taliban and al Qaeda Linked

Baitullah Mehsud: The Making of a Terror State


You are currently reading "Baitullah Mehsud", entry #1867 on The Captain's Journal.

This article is filed under the category(s) Baitullah Mehsud,Jihadists,Tehrik-i-Taliban and was published January 14th, 2009 by Herschel Smith.

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