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NY Bomb Plot Blame On Taliban Form US

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Posted by on Monday, May 10, 2010, 11:51
This news item was posted in Breaking News category and has 1 Comment so far .

WASHINGTON: If Pakistan failed to take appropriate actions against the Taliban, the United States will, US Attorney General Eric Holder said on Sunday as he and other American officials firmly blamed the Pakistani Taliban for a failed attempt to blow up a bomb in New York’s Times Square.

“To the extent that it does not, we will, as Secretary Clinton indicated, take the appropriate steps,” said Mr Holder when asked to explain her earlier statement.

Taliban Bomb Plot At NY

John Brennan, Assistant to the President and Deputy National Security Adviser for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism, talking about the Times Square bombing attempt on CBS's “Face the Nation” in Washington Sunday, May 9, 2010. - Photo by AP.

In an interview recorded on Friday, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton warned that if a successful terrorist attack was traced back to Pakistan, the consequences for that country would be “very severe”.

Several senior US officials and lawmakers appeared on television talk shows on Sunday, spelling out how the United States planned to deal with the consequences of last week’s failed bombing attempt.

On May 1, Faisal Shahzad, an American citizen of Pakistani descent, tried to blow up petrol and propane tanks secreted inside a Nissan Pathfinder parked just yards from the heart of Times Square.

Initial media reports claimed that Faisal learned making bombs at a terrorist camp in North Waziristan.

But later two senior US officials – Secretary for Homeland Security Janet Napolitano and chief of the Central Command Gen David Petraeus – said they believed he was a ‘lone-wolf’ who drew his inspiration from the Taliban but had no formal links to the group.

This assessment, however, had changed by Sunday, when Attorney General Holder and President Barack Obama’s chief counter-terrorism adviser John Brennan said very firmly that the group known as Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan was behind the attack.

The “accusation should increase pressure on the Pakistan military to attack the organisation in its bastions in the lawless tribal region of North Waziristan”, observed The New York Times.

Mr Holder, however, played down the prospect of a direct US military action in Pakistan, pointing out that in connection with the Shahzad investigation, “they had been extremely aggressive, they’ve been cooperative with us, and I think we have been satisfied with the work that they have done”. The United States, he added, wanted to “make sure that kind of cooperation continues”. In separate interviews to two US television channel, Mr Brennan minced no words in blaming the Taliban.

“It’s clear that Faisal Shahzad was working on behalf of the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan, that’s the TTP. That’s a militant terrorist organisation within Pakistan that is closely allied with Al Qaeda,” he said.

“He was trained by them. He received funding from them. He was basically directed here to the United States to carry out this attack.”

Mr Holder also backed him, saying: “We’ve now developed evidence that shows the Pakistani Taliban was behind the attack.” The TTP, he said, “directed this plot;” was “intimately involved” and may have also financed it.

US intelligence officials believe that the TTP has joined forces with Al Qaeda and may be hiding some of its senior leaders, including Osama bin Laden, who was the motivating force behind the 9/11 attack.

Mr Brennan also emphasised that the United States was getting “good cooperation from our Pakistani partners” and was “hopeful we’re going to be able to identify any other individuals that were involved”.

Asked what motivated Faisal to join the Taliban, Mr Brennan said: “He was captured by this murderous rhetoric of Al Qaeda and the TTP that looks at the United States as an enemy.”

This, Mr Brennan said, was “a distorted view of what we are doing, first of all. And secondly, it’s a very distorted view of Islam”.

Yet, he conceded, a number of individuals – Shahzad, Najibullah Zazi and others held in the United States – had been taken in by this rhetoric.

“It’s a very murderous, venomous type of agenda that they have. Unfortunately, there are individuals who are attracted to that, and we have to find them, we have to stop them before they are able to carry out these attacks,” said Mr Brennan when asked if there would be more arrests in the United States.

Neither Mr Holder nor Mr Brennan indicated what new information led them to the firmer conclusions about the role of the Pakistani Taliban.

Meanwhile, the US media reported that as part of its strategy for dealing with this new threat, the Obama administration was urging Pakistan to increase its efforts for combating militants.

The media noted that the chief US commander in Afghanistan, Gen Stanley McChrystal, met the Pakistani army chief in Islamabad recently and urged him to hammer North Waziristan and deal with allied terror groups based in Karachi, the New York Times reported.

The Obama administration was also trying to persuade the Pakistani government to send American development to the tribal areas where militancy thrived, and into Karachi, where the Americans believed radical Madressahs were popular, the report said.

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1 Response to “NY Bomb Plot Blame On Taliban Form US”

  1. […] was posted in Breaking News, Current Affairs category and has 0 Comments so far. PESHAWAR: The Pakistani Taliban have claimed responsibility for the attempted bombing at New York’s Times […]

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