Recent events in Pakistan continue to roil the dysfunctional machinery of that country’s convoluted and stably corruptible domestic and international politics. U.S. leaders have indicated that there exists conclusive proof that the ISI, Pakistan’s vaunted, though suspiciously-embarrasingly- incompetent spy service was complicit in the murder of respected investigative journalist Syed Saleem Shahzad.
Recent reporting by the New York Times alerted the American public to this story. However, our very own Pakistan blogger Malik Siraj Akbar wrote an in-depth review of the story for FPB right when it broke in the Pakistani media, long before the Times published its reportage.
According to Malik Akbar:
“The slain reporter was kidnapped mysteriously and murdered after he had revealed in a story that Al-Qaeda had penetrated inside some groups of the Pakistani Navy which culminated in the 17-hour siege of th PNS Mehran naval air station in Karachi by the activists of the terrorist network. The siege, according to the killed reporter, was the outcome of failed negotiations between Al-Qaeda and the Pakistan Navy on May 22 under which the global terrorist network had demanded the release of the Navy officers who had been detained for their suspected contacts with Al-Qaeda.”
The news that the Pakistani military is negotiating with al Qaeda, like the news of ISI involvement in Shahzad’ murder, is tearing at, cutting into, the already frayed relationship between Pakistan and the United States. It remains to see where the turn lies that might help the contested relationship between these two supposed allies bounce back to some exchange resembling cooperation.
Please read Malik’s excellent coverage of that deeply troubling story here. And stay tuned in the following days for updates as the story moves at what is sure to be quicksilver pace.