Forced To Backtrack On Al-Qaeda Link To Mumbai Attacks
After brazenly declaring that the Mumbai attacks were the work of Al-Qaeda, the corporate media has been forced to backtrack, while India continues to blame Pakistan in a dangerous escalation of rhetoric between the two nuclear-armed powers.
Bellicose propaganda about Bin Laden being behind the massacre, which was initially propagated by the BBC, London Times and Fox News amongst others, has largely evaporated, with the majority of the establishment press being forced to admit they have no idea who was behind the siege on India's financial capital.
However, India's claim that Pakistan had a hand in the attacks is beginning to find favor in the U.S., where one counterterrorism official told CNN, "the level of sophistication in the attack leads officials to believe that it might be tied to Lashkar-e-Tayyiba (Army of the Pure), an Islamic extremist group that has carried out previous attacks in India."
Lashkar-e-Tayyiba would be a useful scapegoat because it has alleged links both to Al-Qaeda and Pakistani's ISI secret service, but since the group has vehemently denied responsibility and terrorists normally like to claim responsibility for their handiwork, any attempt to pin the blame is likely to run out of steam. Lashkar-e-Tayyiba always claim responsibility for their attacks, so their outright denial is the death knell for this explanation.
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But that reasoning did not prevent India's Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee from telling a press conference today that, "Preliminary evidence, prima facie evidence, indicates elements with links to Pakistan are involved."
In reality, as we have repeatedly emphasized, the attacks were likely not the work of Al-Qaeda, Pakistan, the Mossad or the CIA, but Indian Muslims.
As author Tariq Ali points out today, "The Indian Prime Minister, Manmohan Singh, has insisted that the terrorists were based outside the country. The Indian media has echoed this line of argument with Pakistan (via the Lashkar-e-Taiba) and al-Qaeda listed as the usual suspects."
"But this is a meditated edifice of official India’s political imagination. Its function is to deny that the terrorists could be a homegrown variety, a product of the radicalization of young Indian Muslims who have finally given up on the indigenous political system. To accept this view would imply that the country’s political physicians need to heal themselves."
"Why should it be such a surprise if the perpetrators are themselves Indian Muslims? Its hardly a secret that there has been much anger within the poorest sections of the Muslim community against the systematic discrimination and acts of violence carried out against them of which the 2002 anti-Muslim pogrom in shining Gujarat was only the most blatant and the most investigated episode, supported by the Chief Minister of the State and the local state apparatuses."
"Add to this the continuing sore of Kashmir which has for decades been treated as a colony by Indian troops with random arrests, torture and rape of Kashmiris an everyday occurrence. Conditions have been much worse than in Tibet, but have aroused little sympathy in the West where the defense of human rights is heavily instrumentalised."
The identity and motive behind the terrorists is reasonably clear, these young men are disenfranchised, revenge-driven Indian Muslims, along with a smattering of Pakistanis, Kashmiris and Bangladeshis, based in India not Pakistan, who hate Hindus and believe it is their duty to kick-start a wider tribal war, which is why the vast majority of those killed were Indians, not foreigners, Brits or Americans.
The terrorists were not dispatched on their mission by the Pakistan government or Osama bin Laden, they are mostly Indians who represent a domestic problem for the Indian government, which is why the authorities are seeking to deflect blame and exploit the tragedy to demonize Pakistan in the eyes of the international community.
The spin that the terrorists deliberately targeted American and British citizens is still being pumped out by the western corporate media, despite the fact that only one Briton died, himself being originally from Cyprus, in comparison to well over a hundred Indians, and despite the fact that the rampage was a completely indiscriminate massacre.
The western propaganda machine has taken a domestic problem, which expresses itself almost on a monthly basis in India with routine bombings and attacks, and amplified it beyond all proportion to claim that the attacks were an assault on western democracy, capitalism, and ultimately the Anglo-American power alliance.
The horrible slaughter of hundreds of
mostly Indian civilians in Mumbai will now be used as a poster child
for continued bombing campaigns inside Pakistani territory and an expansion
of the ailing war on terror under President elect Barack Obama, which
in the long term only means that more innocent lives will be lost.
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