Who will benefit from attack on Indian Embassy in Kabul? | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, July 11, 2008 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, July 11, 2008

Journalist Hamid Mir From Pakistan

Who will benefit from attack on Indian Embassy in Kabul?

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Nato commanders in Afghanistan believe that India and Pakistan are indirectly playing in the hands of Taliban or any other "third force" by blaming one another for terrorist activities against each other.
Highly placed diplomatic sources in Islamabad and Kabul have said that Nato commanders and some important western diplomats are trying their level best to remove misunderstandings between the two neighbours.
Misunderstandings were created after a suicide attack on Indian embassy on Monday in which Indian military Attaché Brigadier Mehta and political councilor Venket Rao were killed along with 41 others.
Nato commanders are of the view that both Kabul and Islamabad are target of terrorists, Islamabad police was targeted just one day before the attack on Indian embassy in Kabul. Nato officials appreciated that Pakistan never blamed India for Islamabad bombing but the Indian media was quick to blame Pakistan by quoting "Afghan sources".
Diplomatic sources in Islamabad are concerned that Pakistan may also blame India for any terrorist incident in future on its soil and ultimate beneficiary would be Taliban and al-Qaeda. It is learnt that few months ago Pakistan provided some evidence of possible Indian hand in terrorist activities against Chinese engineers in Baluchistan to Afghan and Nato officials. Pakistanis always believe that India is trying to destabilise Baluchistan and FATA by indirectly helping the militants but Afghan government always ignored these concerns.
Afghan officials are suspecting Pakistan for the killing of Brigadier Mehta because he was very active in establishing defense ties between India and Afghanistan. Brig Mehta even had a personal relationship with Afghan defense minister Abdul Rahim Wardak.Brig Mehta, in fact, had accompanied Wardak when he visited New Delhi in April 2008 to hold discussions with his Indian counterpart AK Antony and visit Jammu and Kashmir for a first-hand look at the way Indian army conducted counter-insurgency operations. Mehta sent many Afghan Army officers and pilots for training to India.
He recently proposed to bring more Indian paramilitary troops to Afghanistan for providing security to Indian Army engineers engaged in a road project in Nimroz province. Indian Border Roads Organisation came under 30 rocket attacks in 2007 only in Nimroz.
Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITPB) have already provided 400 soldiers for guarding this project. Four ITPB jawans were killed on June 4th this year in a bomb attack in Nimroz.
Taliban have killed and kidnapped Indian officials many times in last three years, they have always accepted the responsibility of their attacks against Indians but it was the first time that they never accepted the responsibility of attack on Indian embassy in Kabul.
Many believe that misunderstandings between Pakistan and India will be in the interest of Taliban because they want their enemies to fight with each other. Taliban have killed more Pakistani troops in FATA than the total number of Nato troops killed in Afghanistan in last seven years.
Taliban knew that Indians have named a road in the diplomatic enclave of Delhi as "Ahmad Shah Massoud Marg" who was their biggest enemy. They also know that India never accepted their government in Kabul from 1996 to 2001. India always provided money and weapons to Ahmad Shah Massoud and Taliban still consider India as their enemy.
Different groups of Taliban are targeting both India and Pakistan from last few years. There were 57 suicide attacks in Pakistan 2007 in which 658 people were killed.
There was a sudden increase in the attacks in June 2008 with 17 suicide bombings compared to just 7 suicide bombings in June 2007.
They even targeted President Karzai on April 27, 2008 in Kabul during a military parade. Some political analysts fear that if Taliban are not involve in Monday bombing then it is more dangerous because deteriorating law and order situation and growing tension between India and Pakistan may provide an opportunity to some non political players in Pakistan to once again break the fragile democracy in the country.
Many Pakistanis think that the attack on Indian embassy in Kabul was actually an attack on peace and democracy lovers in Pakistan because the real loser is Pakistan which is being blamed for the incident despite the fact that whole Pakistan is still on the high alert for possible suicide bombings. India could get some benefit by deploying more paramilitary troops or even the regular Army troops in Afghanistan in the name of "enhancing more security".

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