View Full Version : Pakistan's Bin Laden dossier: no whitewash but a savage piece of self-analysis

07-08-2013, 10:43 PM
The official Pakistani Abbottabad Commission report, is 336-pages long, but has a favourable review by Jason Burke, the title and sub-title may surprise American readers:
Pakistan's Abbottabad report is serious, savage self-analysis; No Pakistani government agency or institution comes out unscathed – which may in itself be a sign of progress


He draws attention to:
...the views of Shuja Pasha, the head of Pakistan's main military spy agency, the ISI, until last year, that the police and civilian intelligence services are neither trustworthy nor competent partners in fighting terrorism.

There is further discouragement in Pasha's admission that the ISI is aware of the location of "foreign miscreants" in major cities but that the targets are safe in what have become no-go areas for law enforcement authorities. This makes the sheer weakness of much of the government machinery in Pakistan very evident.

I found this comment of contemporary note:
Given the sensitivity of the issue and the political pressures on the authors, this is remarkable. It suggests that those optimists who, in the aftermath of a successful election and transition of power, believe that in some areas at least there is progress in Pakistan might just be right.

In an odd twist we move to Al-Jazeera:
The report, as Commission members had feared, was kept secret. Until now.

Yes, Al-Jazeera, with almost no commentary, has the entire report to read:http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/spotlight/binladenfiles/

07-09-2013, 10:11 AM
A short BBC commentary on the report, which ends with:
Commenting on the leak, the head of the commission, Javed Iqbal, told Pakistani Dunya TV that it was "based on assumptions" and did not include even one out of more than 100 recommendations the commission had made in its findings.


I have not read the report, but it would be remarkable if it was missing the recommendations. What else is missing?:confused:

07-10-2013, 10:32 AM
Al-Jazeera has now added a longer summary of the report and noted this:
Page 197 of the report, which contains part of the testimony of Lt-Gen Ahmed Shuja Pasha, then director of the ISI, was missing from all copies of the report that Al Jazeera obtained from multiple sources. It is unclear what was contained in that page, but the contextual implication is that, among other things, it contains a list of seven demands made by the United States of Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks in 2001.


07-11-2013, 02:46 PM
I always like reading Steve Coll, thanks to a "lurker" this time:
The wives’ narrative is a highlight of the three-hundred-and-thirty-seven-page report of the Abbottabad Commission... By recording transparent, careful accounts of the four wives who survived—Maryam, Amal, and two older Saudi wives of bin Laden who lived more briefly in Abbottabad—the commission has delivered to the historical record illuminating testimony that had previously leaked out only through anonymous intelligence briefings, some of them plainly designed to spin the facts.

His comments on the report and OBL within AQ are stinging.


07-11-2013, 07:11 PM
p-177 and p-185 are the heart of the problem: ISI doesnt do much good but it doesnt let anyone else do their job either. This dual regime, where a mysterious "agency" is present in every corner of the country and shows up to take charge of anything remotely connected to "security" is the number one reason Pakistan is lagging even behind India's corrupt and hugely incompetent state in terms of effectiveness and ability to deliver. Once they show up, everything disappears into a black hole with no one accountable or responsible. No wonder the whole country is overrun with conspiracy theories. (a situation also systematically cultivated by the highly successful psyops brigade of people like Ahmed Qureshi and Zaid Hamid and many many others, all said to be paid by the finest agency in the world.... which could be just another conspiracy theory for all we know, maybe Zaid Hamid's accountant made his disclosures (http://www.brownpundits.com/2013/04/16/zaid-hamid-a-moron-with-connections/)as part of some conspiracy as well. Who knows? and even if someone knows, who can tell who is telling the truth?).
Pasha's passive-aggressive whiny testimony provides great insight into the petty and pathetic level at which the masters actually operate. Bin Laden is not the only Oz exposed in this report.
Note that elementary things like "who cut down the trees", or "what local girl was married to his son" or "who did they stay with, who helped them move around" etc are all missing. Not the commission's fault, they are the ones who point this out, but in a normal state the police or the FBI equivalent would have to answer those questions. In Pakistan, it disappears under the heading "agencies" and no one asks any questions after that. Which is also why the police and everyone else ignored that house in the first place. No elaborate arrangements would be needed. Someone vaguely related to some military intel agency (not even active duty, not even local) just had to drop the hint that the matter involved "national security" and everyone would mind their own business.
As General Pasha pointed out, those who are afraid of the ISI, SHOULD be afraid of it.
That list apparently does not include either CIA spies or Alqaeda terrorists.
All is well. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hy3rPcoC2vA
And do read kamran Shafi: http://tribune.com.pk/story/575599/of-clouseaus-and-noise-controlled-vehicles/

07-11-2013, 10:18 PM

You know the part in the YouTube video where the guy walks into the post while looking at the girl? I've done that.

08-02-2013, 12:10 PM
Circling the Lion's Den has read the Abbottabad Commission report and has picked out a few key passages:http://circlingthelionsden.blogspot.co.uk/2013/07/more-from-abbottabad-commission-report.html and http://circlingthelionsden.blogspot.co.uk/2013/07/agreat-quotes-from-abbottabad.html

The author, Nick Fielding, remarks:
I am rapidly coming to the conclusion that the Abbottabad Commission report is one of the most important documents to have come out of Pakistan for many years. It is full of insights into how Pakistan really operates - public officials that appear to know little about their specialist area, numerous examples of gross incompetence, buck-passing and massive corruption. Here are a few more snippets. However, I urge readers to read a copy of the report, even if, by all accounts, the final version was watered down to placate the Army and intelligence services.

My favourite line is a classic - hence the emphasis, it refers to the NWFP civil administration:
...While there can be no excuse for this 'acceptance of realities' by senior officials, it has to be noted that they functioned in a very perverse political and administrative environment in which insistence on the correct performance of duty was often rewarded with severe punishment."