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Creating an "Arc of Crisis": Destabilization of the Middle East and Central Asia

Andrew G. Marshall | 11.12.2008 16:18 | Anti-militarism | Repression | Terror War | World

The recent attacks in Mumbai, while largely blamed on Pakistan's
state-sponsored militant groups, represent the latest phase in a far more
complex and long-term "strategy of tension" in the region; being employed by
the Anglo-American-Israeli Axis to ultimately divide and conquer the Middle
East and Central Asia. The aim is destabilization of the region, subversion
and acquiescence of the region's countries, and control of its economies,
all in the name of preserving the West's hegemony over the "Arc of Crisis."

Yugoslavia - Before and After Balkanization
Yugoslavia - Before and After Balkanization

Bernard Lewis' Redrawn Map of the "Arc of Crisis"
Bernard Lewis' Redrawn Map of the "Arc of Crisis"

Ralph Peters' Map of a Redrawn M. East - Note similarity to Bernard Lewis' Map
Ralph Peters' Map of a Redrawn M. East - Note similarity to Bernard Lewis' Map


The recent attacks in Mumbai, while largely blamed on Pakistan's
state-sponsored militant groups, represent the latest phase in a far more
complex and long-term "strategy of tension" in the region; being employed by
the Anglo-American-Israeli Axis to ultimately divide and conquer the Middle
East and Central Asia. The aim is destabilization of the region, subversion
and acquiescence of the region's countries, and control of its economies,
all in the name of preserving the West's hegemony over the "Arc of Crisis."

The attacks in India are not an isolated event, unrelated to growing
tensions in the region. They are part of a process of unfolding chaos that
threatens to engulf an entire region, stretching from the Horn of Africa to
India: the "Arc of Crisis," as it has been known in the past.

The motives and modus operandi of the attackers must be examined and
questioned, and before quickly asserting blame to Pakistan, it is necessary
to step back and review:

Who benefits? Who had the means? Who had to motive? In whose interest is it
to destabilize the region? Ultimately, the roles of the United States,
Israel and Great Britain must be submitted to closer scrutiny.

The Mumbai Attacks: 11-26-08

On November 26, 2008, a number of coordinated terrorist attacks occurred
across India's main commercial city of Mumbai, which lasted until November
29. The attacks and three-day siege that ensued left hundreds dead, and
roughly 295 others injured. Among the dead were a Briton, five Americans and
six Israelis.{1}

Asserting the Blame

The 60-hour siege that engulfed Mumbai was reportedly undertaken by just
ten, well-trained "commando killers." Most blame has fallen on the heels of
the group known as Lashkar-e-Taiba.{2}

At first, a previously-unheard of organization, known as the Deccan
Mujahideen, took responsibility for the terror attacks when it sent emails
to several news outlets a mere six hours after the fighting began. However,
much skepticism remained about whether the group actually even exists.{3}

British intelligence then claimed that the attacks had the "hallmarks" of
Al-Qaeda as it was undertaken in an effort to target westerners, similar to
the 2002 Bali Bombings. British intelligence officials suggested the attacks
were in "retaliation" for the recent US air attacks of suspected Al-Qaeda
camps in the Pakistan-Afghanistan border region, and that India was chosen
as the target because that is where Al-Qaeda has "sufficient resources to
carry out an attack."{4}

On November 28, India's foreign minister said the attackers were coordinated
"outside the country," in a veiled reference to Pakistan.{5} India's Prime
Minister also blamed the attacks on militant groups based in Pakistan, which
are supported by the Pakistani government.{6}

Then, the focus was put directly on the group, the Lashkar-e-Taiba, a
militant Pakistani-based organization responsible for past attacks in India.
American intelligence early on pointed the finger at this group, as well as
identifying the Pakistani ISI (Inter-Services Intelligence) as its

The Lashkar-e Taiba (LeT)

It is important to identify what the LeT is and how it has operated
historically. The group operates out of the disputed territories between
India and Pakistan, Jammu and Kashmir. It has close ties with the Pakistani
ISI, and is largely known for its use of suicide attacks. However, aside
from its links to the ISI, it is also closely allied with the Taliban and
Al-Qaeda. The LeT is even referred to as the "most visible manifestation" of
Al-Qaeda in India. It has branches across much of India, Pakistan, and in
Saudi Arabia, Bangladesh, South East Asia, and the United Kingdom. It
primarily gets its funding from Pakistani businessmen, the ISI and Saudi
Arabia. The LeT also took part in the Bosnian campaign against the Serbs in
the 1990s.{8}

All the above-mentioned connections make the LeT the most desirable outfit
to blame for the Mumbai attacks, as its Al-Qaeda connections, international
presence and historical precedents of terror attacks set it up as the
perfect target. Much like with Al-Qaeda, the LeT's international scope could
serve as a basis for taking a "war against LeT" to the steps of many
countries, thus further serving the interests of the Anglo-American "War on

Militant Islam and Western Intelligence - The Case of Yugoslavia

The LeT has not operated independently of Pakistani influence and finances.
It's close relationship with the ISI must be viewed in context: the ISI has
a close relationship with Western intelligence agencies, primarily those of
Great Britain and the United States. The ISI has effectively acted as a
conduit for Anglo-American intelligence operations in the region since the
late 1970s, when the Afghan Mujahedeen were created in collusion with the
CIA. Out of this collusion, lasting throughout the 1980s until the end of
the Soviet-Afghan War in 1989, Al-Qaeda was created, as well as a series of
other militant Islamic organizations.

It is often stated that the CIA then discontinued its relationship with the
ISI, and in turn, that the militant Islamic organizations broke off from
their Western intelligence sponsors to declare war against the West.
However, the facts do not support this. The ties remained, but the strategy
changed. What changed was that in the early 1990s, the Cold War ended, and
Russia no longer was the "Evil Empire," and thus the excuse for an
exacerbated defense budget and imperialist foreign policy receded. As George
H.W. Bush declared, it was during this time that we would see the formation
of the "New World Order." And with that, there was a need for a new, elusive
enemy, not in the form of a nation, but a seemingly invisible enemy,
international in scale, thus taking the war to an international arena.

So in the early 1990s, Western intelligence maintained its ties to these
Islamic terrorist groups. Yugoslavia is a very important case to analyze in
relation to current events. The break-up of Yugoslavia was a process
undertaken by Anglo-American covert interests with the aim of serving their
imperial ambitions in the region. In the early 1980s, the IMF set the stage
in Yugoslavia with its Structural Adjustment Programs, which had the effect
of creating an economic crisis, which in turn created a political crisis.
This exacerbated ethnic rivalries, and in 1991, the CIA supported the Croat
move for independence.

In 1992, with the start of the Bosnian War, Al-Qaeda-affiliated terrorists
began operating with the ethnic Bosnian Muslim minority in fighting the
Serbs. In turn, these Al-Qaeda affiliated groups were supported with
training, arming, and finances by German, Turkish, Iranian and US
intelligence agencies; with additional financial support from Saudi Arabia.
In 1997, the Kosovo War began, in which the militant-terrorist-drug
trafficking Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) began fighting against Serbia, with
training, arms and financial support from the US and other NATO countries.
The CIA, German intelligence, the DIA, MI6 and British Special Forces (SAS)
all provided training and support to the KLA.


The aim was in breaking up Yugoslavia, using ethnic rivalries as the trigger
for regional conflict and ultimately war, leading to the dissolution of
Yugoslavia into several countries, justifying a permanent US and NATO
military presence in the region. [See: Breaking Yugoslavia, by Andrew G.
Marshall, Geopolitical Monitor, July 21, 2008 [1]]

The Lashkar-e Taiba's participation in the Bosnian War against Serbia would
have in turn been financed and supported by these various Western
intelligence agencies, thus serving the interests of Western Imperialist
states; primarily those of Great Britain and the United States.

The LeT and Western Intelligence

The LeT has a sordid history of involvement with Western intelligence
agencies, primarily those of Great Britain.

With the London 7-7 bombings [July 7, 2005] in which three underground
stations and a double-decker bus had bombs explode on them; many of the
suspected terrorists had interesting connections to Pakistan. For example,
one of the suspects, Shehzad Tanweer, had apparently "attended a religious
school run by the terrorist group Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT)" while in Pakistan.
Due to the LeT's ties with Al-Qaeda, this allowed for the conclusion to be
drawn that Al-Qaeda may have played a part in the London bombings, which
were initially blamed on the international terrorist organization. The LeT
also has close ties with the Jemaah Islamiyyah (JI),{9} an Indonesian
terrorist organization, which was blamed for the 2002 Bali bombings, which
also targeted tourists in Indonesia.

- The Bali Bombings -

Interesting to note, however, is that in the early 1990's, when the Jemaah
Islamiyyah (JI) was officially formed into a terrorist organization, it
developed close ties with Osama bin Laden and Al-Qaeda. Further, the
organizations founders and leaders played a significant role in recruiting
Muslims to join the Afghan Mujahideen in the war against the Soviets during
the 1980's, which was covertly directed and supported by US, British and
various other Western intelligence agencies. The JI wouldn't exist "without
the CIA's dirty operations in Afghanistan." A former Indonesian President
stated that one of JI's key individuals was also a spy for the Indonesian
intelligence agency, and that Indonesian intelligence played a more central
role in the Bali bombings than the JI itself.

The JI itself, had reportedly been infiltrated by the CIA, Israeli Mossad,
and that "the CIA and the Mossad, assisted by the Australian Special Action
Police (SAP) and the M15 of England, are all working towards undermining
Muslim organizations in an attempt to weaken the Muslims globally." Further,
one of JI's key planners of the Bali bombings, Omar al-Faruq, was reportedly
a CIA asset, and even senior Indonesian intelligence officials believed the
CIA was behind the Bali bombings. The CIA subsequently "guided" Indonesia's
investigation into the bombings, which found the JI, and the JI alone,
responsible for the attacks. [See: Andrew G. Marshall, The Bali Bombings.
Geopolitical Monitor, November 15, 2008 [2]]

- London 7-7 -

Much of the focus of the London bombings of July 7, 2005 (7-7), was focused
on the "Pakistani connection." The suspected bombers had all visited
Pakistan, and apparently developed contacts with groups such as
Jaish-e-Mohammed and the Lashkar-e Taiba. However, a less known and less
publicized connection yields some very interesting information. The
suspected mastermind of the London bombings, Haroon Rashid Aswat, had
visited all the suspected bombers leading up to the attacks. Phone records
revealed that there were "around 20 calls between him and the 7-7 gang,
leading right up to those attacks." Why is this significant? Because Haroon
Rashid Aswat, apart from being an Al-Qaeda operative, also happened to be an
MI6 agent, working for the British intelligence. Haroon also made his
appearance on the scene of Islamic terrorism when he was in Kosovo in the
1990's, where he "worked for British intelligence."{10}


Another event which brought to the forefront a "Pakistani connection" was
the August 2006 London liquid bomb plot, in which terrorists supposedly were
plotting to blow up nearly a dozen Atlantic airliners bound for major US

The Pakistani ISI apparently helped in "uncovering" the liquid bomb plot,
aiding the British in their roundup of suspects, and "tipped-off MI5." One
of the Pakistani groups accused of some involvement in the liquid bomb plot
was the Lashkar-e Taiba.{11}

However, again, the suspected terrorists had been "infiltrated" and spied on
by British intelligence for over a year. Further, the supposed ringleader of
the bomb plot, Rashid Rauf, a dual British-Pakistani citizen, was pinpointed
as the ringleader by both British and Pakistani intelligence, and was the
link between the plot and Al-Qaeda. Rauf also has close ties with the ISI,
and apparently had the plot approved by Al-Qaeda's number two in command,
Ayman al-Zawahiri, who formerly worked for the CIA during the Soviet-Afghan
war. The ISI had arrested Rashid Rauf following the "exposure" of the liquid
bomb plot, yet, in 2006, the charges against him were dropped, and in 2007,
he amazingly escaped Pakistani custody, having "managed to open his
handcuffs and evade two police guards." [See: Andrew G. Marshall, Liquid
Bomb Plot. Geopolitical Monitor: October 27, 2008 [3]]

Clearly, if the LeT is discovered to be responsible for the Mumbai attacks,
its connections to Western intelligence agencies should be more closely
examined and subject to investigation. The ISI, throughout its history, has
not been the key player in supporting various terrorist organizations,
rather, it can be more accurately described as a conduit for Western
intelligence agencies to covertly fund and support terrorist organizations
in the Middle East and Central Asia.

Terrorizing India

We must examine the current attacks with a backdrop of reviewing recent
terror attacks in India.

- 1993 Bombay Bombings -

March 12, 1993, Bombay (today, Mumbai) experienced a coordinated attack of
13 explosions, which killed over 250 people. A man with close connections to
Osama bin laden and Al-Qaeda, Dawood Ibrahim, was believed to have been the
mastermind of the attacks. He has also financed several operations of the
Lashkar-e Taiba, and was believed to be hiding out in Pakistan, and
receiving protection and support from the Pakistani ISI, which in 2007,
reportedly arrested him. [See: Andrew G. Marshall, Political Destabilization
in South and Central Asia: The Role of the CIA-ISI Terror Network. Global
Research: September 17, 2008] [4]

- Mumbai Bombings, July 11, 2006: 7-11 -

Over 200 people were killed in Mumbai when seven bombs exploded within 11
minutes of one another on several trains. Blame for the attacks was placed
with the Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) and the Lashkar-e Taiba
(LeT), both of which have close ties with the ISI. The ISI was subsequently
blamed for organizing the attacks, which were then carried out by the LeT
and SIMI. The bombings led to the postponement of India-Pakistan peace
talks, which were set to take place the next week. [Ibid]

- Indian Embassy Bombing in Kabul, Afghanistan: July 7, 2008 -

On July 7, 2008, a bomb exploded at the Indian embassy in Kabul,
Afghanistan, killing over 50 people, and injuring over 100 others. The
Afghan government and the Indian intelligence agency immediately blamed the
ISI, in collaboration with the Taliban and Al-Qaeda, of planning and
executing the attack. Reports on the bombing suggested that the aim was to
"increase the distrust between Pakistan and Afghanistan and undermine
Pakistan's relations with India, despite recent signs that a peace process
between Islamabad and New Delhi was making some headway."

In early August, American intelligence agencies supported the claim that
members of the ISI helped plan the attack, which they based upon
"intercepted communications," and that, "American officials said that the
communications were intercepted before the July 7 bombing, and that the
C.I.A. emissary, Stephen R. Kappes, the agency's deputy director, had been
ordered to Islamabad, Pakistan's capital, even before the attack."
Interestingly, "a top Central Intelligence Agency official traveled to
Pakistan [in August] to confront senior Pakistani officials with information
about support provided by members of the ISI to militant groups." However,
the CIA knows of these connections, as it has actively supported and
financed these covert ISI connections with terrorist organizations. So, what
was the real purpose of this top CIA official's visit to Pakistan?

Days after the CIA released this information to the New York Times, the US
accused Pakistan of undermining NATO's efforts in Afghanistan by supporting
Al-Qaeda and the Taliban, and further, "Mike Mc-Connell, the director of
national intelligence, and [CIA director] Hayden asked Musharraf to allow
the CIA greater freedom to operate in the tribal areas," and was threatened
with "retaliation" if he did not comply. [See: Andrew G. Marshall, Political
Destabilization in South and Central Asia: The Role of the CIA-ISI Terror
Network. Global Research: September 17, 2008] [4]

The ISI and the CIA

Again, if the ISI is to be blamed for the recent Mumbai attacks, as it has
played a part in several attacks and support of terrorism throughout its
history, it is important to identify its relationship with the CIA.

The CIA developed close ties with the ISI in the late 1970s, as the CIA used
the ISI as a "go-between" for CIA support of the Afghan Mujahideen. This
relationship was also pivotal in supporting the Afghan narcotics trade,
which again is rampant. The relationship between the two agencies continued
throughout the 1990s, in areas such as Chechnya, Yugoslavia and India. [See:
Michel Chossudovsky, Al Qaeda and the "War on Terrorism". Global Research:
January 20, 2008] [5]

A week prior to the 9-11 attacks, the head of Pakistan's ISI was on a visit
to Washington, D.C., where he met with several key policy figures, such as
Deputy Secretary of State, Richard Armitage; Senator Joseph Biden, who is
going to be Obama's Vice President; and with his counterparts in the CIA and
Pentagon, and several other officials. He was in Washington right up to and
after the 9-11 attacks, and was engaged in several key consultations with US
officials, pledging support for the US War on Terror instantly. However, the
very same Chief of the ISI also happened to have previously approved of
wiring $100,000 to the lead 9-11 hijacker, Mohammed Atta, which was also
confirmed by the FBI. Thus, the ISI suddenly became a financier of the 9-11
attacks. Yet, no action was taken against the ISI or Pakistan, apart from
the ISI Chief being fired upon this revelation making it into the media. [5]

Of significance is that this ISI Chief, Lt.-General Mahmoud Ahmad, was
approved as head of the ISI by the US in 1999. From then, he was in close
contact and liaison with top officials of the CIA, the Defense Intelligence
Agency (DIA), and the Pentagon. [See: Michel Chossudovsky, Cover-up or
Complicity of the Bush Administration? Global Research: November 2, 2001] [6]

Collaboration between the ISI and CIA did not end with these disturbing
revelations. In 2007, it was reported that the CIA was arming and funding a
terrorist organization named Jundullah, based in Pakistan's tribal areas,
with the goal of "sowing chaos" in Iran. Jundullah not only is funded and
armed by the CIA, but has extensive ties to Al-Qaeda, and the ISI, as the
CIA's financial support for the group is funneled through the ISI, so as to
make it more difficult to establish a link between the CIA and the terrorist
outfit. [See: Andrew G. Marshall, Political Destabilization in South and
Central Asia, op cit] [4]

As Michel Chossudovsky pointed out in his article, India's 9-11, "In
September, Washington pressured Islamabad, using the "war on terrorism" as a
pretext to fire the ISI chief Lieutenant General Nadeem Taj," and Pakistani
"President Asif Ali Zardari had meetings in New York in late September with
CIA Director Michael Hayden." Following these meetings, "a new US approved
ISI chief Lieutenant General Ahmed Shuja Pasha was appointed by the Chief of
the Army, General Kayani, on behalf of Washington." [7]

Anglo-American-Israeli Intelligence and India

In mid-October, American intelligence agencies warned Indian intelligence
warned India about an attack "from the sea against hotels and business
centers in Mumbai." Even the Taj Hotel, which became the key area of
fighting, was listed as a specific target.{12} In late November, "India's
intelligence services had delivered at least three precise warnings that a
major terrorist attack on Mumbai was imminent."{13}

Immediately following the attacks, it was reported that, "Unprecedented
intelligence cooperation involving investigating agencies and spy outfits of
India, United States, United Kingdom and Israel has got underway to crack
the method and motive behind the Mumbai terrorist massacre, now widely
blamed on Islamist radicals who appeared to have all four countries on their
hit list when they arrived on the shores of India." Specifically,
"Investigators, forensic analysts, counter-terrorism experts and spymasters
from agencies the four countries are converging in New Delhi and Mumbai to
put their heads, resources, and skills together to understand the evolving
nature of the beast."

Further, "Washington suggested sending US Special Forces for on-the-ground
operations in Mumbai but New Delhi declined the offer, saying its own forces
could take care of the situation." This unprecedented intelligence
cooperation was based upon the understanding that, "the manner in which the
terrorists who attacked Mumbai are reported to have singled out Americans
and Britons, besides pointedly occupying a Jewish center, has revealed that
their agenda was wider than just domestic discontent or the Kashmir

Shortly after the attacks began, it was reported that FBI agents were
quickly flown to Mumbai to help in investigating the Mumbai attacks.{15}
Israel also offered to send in its "crack commandos to Mumbai to rescue
Israeli hostages held in a Jewish centre," which was refused by India, which
led to Israeli media criticizing India's response to the attacks as "slow,
confused and inefficient."{16}

The Terrorists

Hours after the attacks began on November 26, it was reported that two
terrorists were killed and two others were arrested.{17} Later on, reports
surfaced in which Indian police had killed four of the Mumbai terrorists and
arrested nine of them.{18} The international media was full of this reported
capture of nine terrorists.

Interestingly, by November 29, the story had changed. All of a sudden,
Mumbai cops had only "nabbed" one terrorist. This person has effectively
become the nail-in-the-coffin for laying the blame at Pakistan's door. As
soon as this person was caught, he began to sing like a canary, and said
that, "all [the] terrorists were trained in marine warfare along with the
special course Daura-e-Shifa conducted by the Lashkar-e-Taiba in what at
once transforms the nature of the planning from a routine terror strike and
into a specialized raid by commandos." He also stated that the terrorists
"were made to believe by their Lashkar bosses that they were not being sent
on a suicide mission and that they would be coming back alive." He also
revealed the names of his fellow terrorists, all of them Pakistani

Along the same lines, another very interesting mystery of the Mumbai
massacre is the early reports of British involvement. Shortly following the
outbreak of violence, Indian authorities stated that, "Seven of the Mumbai
terrorists were British Pakistanis," and that, "two Brits had been arrested
and another five suspects were from the UK." Further, Blackberry phones
found on the suspects contained "a lot of content" connecting them with the
UK.{20} The Chief Minister of Mumbai had early on reported that, "two
British-born Pakistanis were among eight gunmen seized by Indian commandos
who stormed buildings to free hostages."{21}

On December 1, the Daily Mail reported that, "As many as seven of the
terrorists may have British connections and some could be from Leeds and
Bradford where London's July 7 bombers lived." As a result of these
revelations, Scotland Yard anti-terrorist detectives were sent to Mumbai "to
assist in the investigation." There was also speculation that one particular
British Al-Qaeda suspect may have helped plan the assault, and just happened
to be killed a week earlier in Pakistan by the CIA. That person was Rashid
Rauf.{22} This is the same Rashid Rauf who was at first declared the
mastermind of the London liquid bomb plot, who had close ties with the ISI
and Al-Qaeda, who was subsequently arrested by the ISI, and then
miraculously "escaped" from Pakistani custody. Barely a week before the
Mumbai Massacre, Rauf was reportedly killed by a CIA drone attack on a
militant Islamic base in Pakistan's tribal region.

Early on, there was an incident in which a taxicab was blown up in Mumbai,
with the driver and passenger killed. The taxi started moving through a red
light when the car bomb exploded, which ended up saving the lives of
"hundreds," as opposed to if the car had moved when the light was green and
intersection was full. This ensured that the only ones who died were those
in the taxi.{23} This sparked an investigation into whether the driver "was
aware that his car was loaded with explosives."{24}

Why is this significant? Because this closely resembles tactics used in Iraq
since the Anglo-American occupation of the country, employed by both US and
British intelligence and special forces in an effort to sow chaos and create
civil strife and war. [See: Andrew G. Marshall, State-Sponsored Terror:
British and American Black Ops in Iraq. Global Research, June 25, 2008] [8]

Means, Modus Operandi and Motive

- Means -

While the possibility that Pakistan and the ISI (or Lashkar-e Taiba) are
responsible for the Mumbai attacks should be taken into consideration, given
precedence and means, we must allow ourselves to contemplate other

While India and the west are placing the blame for the attacks on Pakistan's
ISI and the Lashkar-e Taiba, the Pakistani press is reporting on another

On November 29, the Pakistan Daily reported that, with a stiff side of
anti-Israel rhetoric, that the Mumbai attack would be used "as justification
for a US invasion of Pakistan." It reported that the Israeli Mossad "has
mobilized since 2000 in the Jammu and Kashmir areas of India, where the
Indian government has been pursuing a 'security' issue with regard to the
Kashmiri people." It quoted a Times of India article that reported, "Israeli
counter-terrorism experts are now touring Jammu and Kashmir and several
other states in India at the invitation of Home Minister Lal Krishna Advani
to make an assessment of New Delhi's security needs. The Israeli team,
headed by Eli Katzir of the Israel Counter-Terrorism Combat Unit, includes
Israeli military intelligence officials and a senior police official." There
was also a reported agreement on "closer India-Israeli cooperation on all
security matters."{25}

- Modus Operandi -

Shortly after the start of the attacks in Mumbai, a Russia counter-terrorism
presidential envoy stated that, "The terrorists in the Indian city of
Mumbai, who killed more than 150 people and injured over 300, used the same
tactics that Chechen field militants employed in the Northern Caucasus." He
elaborated, "These tactics were used during raids by militant Chechen field
commanders Shamil Basayev and Salman Raduyev against the towns of
Buddyonnovsk and Pervomaiskoye. For the first time in history the entire
towns were terrorized, with homes and hospitals seized. The Mumbai
terrorists have learned these tactics well."{26} [8]

Shamil Basayev, one of the Chechen rebel leaders, as well as many of the
other Chechen leaders, were trained by the CIA and ISI in Afghanistan, in
CIA-run training camps during the Soviet-Afghan war of the 1980s.{27}

- Motive - [8]

On December 2, former ISI Chief Hameed Gul, said that the "Mumbai incident
is an international based conspiracy to deprive Pakistan of its atomic
power. Talking to a private TV channel on Friday, he said that to involve
Pakistan in the incident reflected that some forces wanted to declare
Pakistan a fail[ed] state as somehow it had become necessary to make
Pakistan kneel down in order to snatch its atomic power away." He elaborated
that the method of attacks, and how the militants executed them, "seemed
impossible without internal support." He continued in stating that the "US
wanted to see [the] Indian army in Afghanistan to disintegrate the country,"
and referred to recent US maps showing a divided Pakistan in four parts, and
that making Pakistan "kneel down" before the IMF was "part of a pre-planned

As astonishing and outlandish as these claims may seem, the US has a long
history of turning on its allies when they seek to become self-sufficient
and developed, such as with Saddam Hussein and Iraq in the early 1990s.
Also, it is vital to note the role of the IMF and World Bank in creating
economic crises, and thus, political-social-ethnic instability, which
invariably has led to all out ethnic war, genocides and "international
interventions," in countries such as Yugoslavia and Rwanda.

The International Financial Institutions (IFIs) often create the conditions
for political instability, while covert Western intelligence support to
disaffected and radical groups creates the means for rebellion; which then
becomes the excuse for foreign military intervention; which then secures an
imperial military presence in the region, thus gaining control over the
particular region's resources and strategic position. This is the age-old
conquest of empire: divide and conquer.

Interesting to note is that in 2008, "Pakistan was again seeking IMF help.
On Nov. 25, it won final approval on a $7.6 billion loan package after
foreign reserves shrank 74 percent to $3.5 billion in the 12 months ended on
Nov. 8."{29} This loan was approved a day before the Mumbai attacks began.
On December 4, it was reported that, "Tough conditions of International
Monetary Fund (IMF) have now started surfacing as IMF and the Government of
Pakistan (GoP) agreed to discontinue oil import support, eliminate power
subsidies and budgetary support of the government, public and private
entities. IMF and GoP have agreed to phase out the State Bank of Pakistan's
(SBPs) provision of foreign exchange for oil imports." On top of this,
"further steps will be taken during the remainder of the fiscal year to
strengthen tax enforcement. Moreover, fuel prices will continue to be
adjusted to pass through changes in international prices." Further, "The
programme envisages a significant tightening of monetary policy."{30}

The results of these conditionalities are predictable: Pakistan will lose
all subsidies; fuel prices will drastically rise, as will food and other
necessary commodity prices. At the same time, a tightening of monetary
policy and World Bank-IMF control over Pakistan's central bank will prevent
Pakistan from taking measures to curb inflation, and the cost of living will
skyrocket as the currency value plummets. All this is going on while taxes
are increased and expanded greatly, and public jobs such as bureaucratic
positions, education, etc., are downsized or altogether disbanded. Money
will likely continue to flow to the ISI and Army, which will create
discontent among Pakistan's deprived and disillusioned. A military coup
would be likely, followed by rebellion en masse, which would in turn pit the
various ethnicities against one another. This could lead to either a war
against India, ultimately ending with a consolidated national security state
to act as a conduit for Anglo-American imperial ambitions, such as in
Rwanda; or, it could result in ethnic conflict and wars, ultimately ending
up in the break-up of Pakistan into smaller states divided among ethnic
lines, such as in Yugoslavia. Or, it could end with a combination of the
two, a divided, warring, region engulfed in crisis.

The break up of Pakistan is not a far-fetched idea in terms of
Anglo-American strategy. In fact, the plan for the destabilization and
ultimately, balkanization of Pakistan has originated in
Anglo-American-Israeli military strategic circles. As I previously
documented in Divide and Conquer: The Anglo-American Imperial Project
[Global Research, July 10, 2008], the destabilization and balkanization of
the near-entire Middle East and Central Asia has been a long-held strategy
for the Anglo-America-Israeli Axis since the late 1970s and early 1980s. [9]

Divide and Conquer

This concept evolved in strategic planning circles in the late 1970s in
response to regional nationalist tendencies in the Middle East and Central
Asia, as well as a perceived threat of growing Soviet influence in the
region. The central aim of these strategic thinkers was to secure Middle
Eastern oil and Central Asian gas reserves and pipeline routes under the
control of the Anglo-Americans. Control over these vital energy reserves is
a strategic as much as economic concern, as most of the world gets its
energy from this area; so those who control the energy, control who gets it,
and thus, control much of the world. The economic benefits of
Anglo-Americans controlling the regions energy reserves cannot be analyzed
separately from strategic interests, as they are one and the same.
Anglo-American oil companies gain control of the oil and gas, while the
British and American governments install puppet regimes to look after their
interests; and to act as proxies in creating conflicts and wars with
countries of the region who act in their own national interest, as opposed
to acting under the guidance of and submission to the Anglo-Americans.

Arc of Crisis

After the 1973 oil shocks, which were, in fact, promoted and covertly
orchestrated by Anglo-American banking and oil interests, the oil producing
nations grew very wealthy, such as Iran. As well as this, countries like
Afghanistan were becoming increasingly leftist and progressive. Fearing
possible alliances developing between Middle Eastern and Central Asian
countries with the Soviet Union, as well as the even greater threat of these
countries becoming truly independent, taking control of their own resources
for the good of their own people; Anglo-American strategists turned to what
is called the "Arc of Crisis."

The "Arc of Crisis" describes the "nations that stretch across the southern
flank of the Soviet Union from the Indian subcontinent to Turkey, and
southward through the Arabian Peninsula to the Horn of Africa." Further, the
"center of gravity of this arc is Iran." In 1978, Zbigniew Brzezinski gave a
speech in which he stated, "An arc of crisis stretches along the shores of
the Indian Ocean, with fragile social and political structures in a region
of vital importance to us threatened with fragmentation. The resulting
political chaos could well be filled by elements hostile to our values and
sympathetic to our adversaries."{36}

Anglo-American strategy in the region thus developed and changed at this
time, as "There was this idea that the Islamic forces could be used against
the Soviet Union. The theory was, there was an arc of crisis, and so an arc
of Islam could be mobilized to contain the Soviets. It was a Brzezinski
concept."{37} Bilderberg member, Bernard Lewis, presented a British-American
strategy to the Bilderberg Group during the 1979 meeting, which, "endorsed
the radical Muslim Brotherhood movement behind Khomeini, in order to promote
balkanization of the entire Muslim Near East along tribal and religious
lines. Lewis argued that the West should encourage autonomous groups such as
the Kurds, Armenians, Lebanese Maronites, Ethiopian Copts, Azerbaijani
Turks, and so forth. The chaos would spread in what he termed an `Arc of
Crisis,' which would spill over into the Muslim regions of the Soviet
Union."{38} Since the Soviet Union was viewed as a secular and atheist
regime, having oppressed religion within its sphere of influence, the rise
of radical Islamic influence and governments in the Middle East and Central
Asia would ensure that Soviet influence would not enter into the region, as
radical Muslims would view the Soviets with more distrust than the
Americans. The Anglo-Americans positioned themselves as the lesser of two

Bernard Lewis was a former British intelligence officer and historian who is
infamous for explaining Arab discontent towards the West as not being rooted
in a reaction toward imperialism, but rather that it is rooted in Islam; in
that Islam is incompatible with the West, and that they are destined to
clash, using the term, "Clash of Civilizations." For decades, "Lewis played
a critical role as professor, mentor, and guru to two generations of
Orientalists, academics, U.S. and British intelligence specialists, think
tank denizens, and assorted neoconservatives." In the 1980s, Lewis "was
hobnobbing with top Department of Defense officials."{39} Lewis wrote a 1992
article in Foreign Affairs, the journal of the Council on Foreign Relations,
titled, "Rethinking the Middle East." In this article, Lewis raised the
prospect of another policy towards the Middle East in the wake of the end of
the Cold War and beginnings of the New World Order, "which could even be
precipitated by fundamentalism, is what has of late become fashionable to
call 'Lebanonization.' Most of the states of the Middle East - Egypt is an
obvious exception - are of recent and artificial construction and are
vulnerable to such a process. If the central power is sufficiently weakened,
there is no real civil society to hold the polity together, no real sense of
common national identity or overriding allegiance to the nation-state. The
state then disintegrates - as happened in Lebanon - into a chaos of
squabbling, feuding, fighting sects, tribes, regions and parties."{40}


A Foreign Affairs article of 1979, the journal put out by the powerful
Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), discussed the Arc of Crisis: "The Middle
East constitutes its central core. Its strategic position is unequalled: it
is the last major region of the Free World directly adjacent to the Soviet
Union, it holds in its subsoil about three-fourths of the proven and
estimated world oil reserves, and it is the locus of one of the most
intractable conflicts of the twentieth century: that of Zionism versus Arab
nationalism." It explained that US strategy in the region was focused with
"containment" of the Soviet Union as well as access to the regions oil. {41}

It was in this context that in 1979, as Zbigniew Brzezinski later admitted,
"According to the official version of history, CIA aid to the Mujahadeen
began during 1980, that is to say, after the Soviet army invaded
Afghanistan, 24 Dec 1979. But the reality, secretly guarded until now, is
completely otherwise Indeed, it was July 3, 1979 that President Carter
signed the first directive for secret aid to the opponents of the pro-Soviet
regime in Kabul. And that very day, I wrote a note to the president in which
I explained to him that in my opinion this aid was going to induce a Soviet
military intervention." He claimed that, "We didn't push the Russians to
intervene, but we knowingly increased the probability that they would." What
a perfect example of what George Orwell would call "double-speak," saying
that the Americans "didn't push the Russians to intervene" but rather,
"increased the probability that they would." In other words, they "pushed"
them to intervene.{42}

This is when the Mujahideen were created, and through this, Al-Qaeda, and a
variety of other radical Islamic groups which have come to plague global
geopolitics since this era. Terrorism cannot be viewed, as it often is, in
such a simple manner as "non-state actors" reacting to geopolitics of
nations and corporations. In fact, many terrorist groups, particularly the
largest, most well organized, extremist and violent ones, are "proxy state
actors," receiving covert support - through arms and training - by various
state intelligence agencies. They are not simply "reacting" to geopolitics,
but are important players in the geopolitical chessboard. They represent the
perfect excuse for foreign militaristic adventurism and war; domestic
tyranny in the form of developing police states to control populations,
stifle dissent and create a totalitarian base of control.

As the San Francisco Chronicle wrote in September of 2001, shortly after the
9-11 attacks, "The map of terrorist sanctuaries and targets in the Middle
East and Central Asia is also, to an extraordinary degree, a map of the
world's principal energy sources in the 21st century. The defense of these
energy resources -- rather than a simple confrontation between Islam and the
West -- will be the primary flash point of global conflict for decades to
come." Further, it stated: "It is inevitable that the war against terrorism
will be seen by many as a war on behalf of America's Chevron, ExxonMobil and
Arco; France's TotalFinaElf; British Petroleum; Royal Dutch Shell and other
multinational giants, which have hundreds of billions of dollars of
investment in the region."{43} Indeed, where Al-Qaeda is present, the US
military follows, and behind the military, the oil companies wait and push;
and behind the oil companies, the banks cash in.

Balkanizing the Middle East

In 1982, Oded Yinon, an Israeli journalist wrote a report for a publication
of the World Zionist Organization in which he advocated, "The dissolution of
Syria and Iraq into ethnically or religiously unique areas such as in
Lebanon [which] is Israel's primary target on the Eastern front. Iraq, rich
in oil on the one hand and internally torn on the other is guaranteed as a
candidate for Israel's targets. Its dissolution is even more important for
us than that of Syria. Iraq is stronger than Syria. In the short run, it is
Iraqi power which constitutes the greatest threat to Israel."

In 1996, an Israeli think tank with many prominent American
neo-conservatives, issued a report in which they advocated for Israel to
"Work closely with Turkey and Jordan to contain, destabilize, and roll-back
some of its most dangerous threats," among them, to remove Saddam Hussein
from power.

In 2000, the Project for the New American Century, an American
neo-conservative think tank, published a report called Rebuilding America's
Defenses, in which they openly advocated for an American empire in the
Middle East, focusing on removing the "threats" of Iraq and Iran.

Shortly after the US invasion of Iraq, prominent members of the Council on
Foreign Relations had begun advocating the break-up of Iraq into at least
three smaller states, using Yugoslavia as an example of how to achieve this.

In 2006, the Armed Force Journal published an article by retired
Lieutenant-Colonel Ralph Peters, which called for the redrawing of the
borders of the Middle East. He first advocated the breakup of Iraq, and
that, "Saudi Arabia would suffer as great a dismantling as Pakistan," and
that, "Iran, a state with madcap boundaries, would lose a great deal of
territory to Unified Azerbaijan, Free Kurdistan, the Arab Shia State and
Free Baluchistan, but would gain the provinces around Herat in today's

Describing Pakistan as "an unnatural state," he said, "Pakistan's Northwest
Frontier tribes would be reunited with their Afghan brethren," and that it
"would also lose its Baluch territory to Free Baluchistan. The remaining
"natural" Pakistan would lie entirely east of the Indus, except for a
westward spur near Karachi." He even made up a helpful little list of
"losers" and "winners" in this new great game: as in, who gains territory,
and who loses territory. Among the losers are Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq,
Israel, Kuwait, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Turkey, United Arab Emirates,
the West Bank and Pakistan. And Peters made the startling statement that
redrawing borders is often only achieved through war and violence, and that
"one other dirty little secret from 5,000 years of history: Ethnic cleansing
[See: Andrew G. Marshall, Divide and Conquer: The Anglo-American Imperial
Project. Global Research, July 10, 2008] [9]



Ultimately, the aims of the Mumbai attacks are to target Pakistan for
balkanization. The question of who is responsible - either the ISI, largely
rogue of Pakistan's civilian government and under the authority of
Anglo-American intelligence; or separate Indian terrorists, likely supported
by the same Anglo-American intelligence community - while important, is
ultimately a secondary consideration in comparison to the question of Why?

The Who, What, Where, and When is a show for public consumption; masked in
confusion and half-truths, designed to confuse and ultimately frustrate the
observer - creating a sense of unease and fear of the unknown. The WHY, on
the other hand, is the most important question; once you discover the why,
the who, where, what, and when begin to fall into place, and create a full

If the Mumbai attacks were designed to be blamed on Pakistan - as they
likely were - and thus, to possibly start a war between Pakistan and India -
which is now a growing reality - what is the ultimate significance of
knowing if it was the ISI or Indian elements responsible? Albeit, this is
important to know, however, when it comes to understanding the motives
behind the attacks, it pales in comparison.

Pakistan is a strategic lynch-point in the region. Pakistan borders Iran,
Afghanistan, India and China. It lies directly below the Central Asian
republics of the Former Soviet Union, which are rich in natural gas
resources. With NATO's war in Afghanistan, and the Anglo-Americans in Iraq,
and American forces in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, the occupation of Pakistan
would position Western imperial militaries around Iran, the central Middle
Eastern target. With the balkanization of Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan,
destabilizing forces would cross the borders into Iran, ultimately creating
the conditions for political and social collapse within the country.

A conflict between Pakistan and India would not only have the effect of
dismantling Pakistan, but would also greatly deter India's rapid economic
and social development as the world's largest democracy, and would force it
to come under the influence or "protection" of Western military might and
International Financial Institutions. The same is likely for China, as
destabilization would cross Pakistan's borders into the most populated
country on earth, exacerbating ethnic differences and social disparities.

A large Anglo-American military presence in Pakistan, or, alternatively, a
NATO or UN force, combined with the already present NATO force in
Afghanistan, would be a massive military strategic position against
advancement of China, Russia or India into the region. With China's
massively increasing influence in Africa threatening Anglo-American and
European domination of the continent, a massive military presence on the
border of China could act as a powerful warning.

The Mumbai attacks do not aid India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, or any nation
within the region. The beneficiaries of the Mumbai Massacre are in London
and New York, in the boardrooms and shareholders of the largest
international banks; which seek total control of the world. Having dominated
North America and Europe for much of recent history, these bankers,
primarily Anglo-American, but also European, seek to exert their total
control over the world's resources, currencies, and populations. There are
many concurrent strategies they are employing to achieve this end: among
them, the global financial crisis, to reign in and control the world
economy; and a "total war" in the Middle East, likely escalating into a
World War with Russia and China, is the perfect tool to strike enough fear
into the world population to accept an over-arching supranational governance
structure - to ensure no future wars occur, to ensure stability of the
global economy - a utopian vision of a single world order.

The problem with utopias is that they are "ultimate ideals," and if humanity
has learned anything in its history on this planet; it is that perfection is
impossible, be it in the form of an "ideal person" or an "ideal government;"
humanity is plagued by imperfections and emotion. Accepting our
imperfections as a species is what can make us great, and understanding that
a utopian ideal is impossible to achieve is what can allow us to create the
"best possible" society we can have. All utopias attempted throughout
history have always turned into dystopias. We must learn from humanity's
history of sordid flaws; and only when we accept that we are not perfect,
and cannot ever become perfect, in person or in politics, are we free to
become humanity at it's most advanced and at its most noble.


{1} Damien McElroy and Rahul Bedi, Mumbai attacks: 300 feared dead as full
horror of the terrorist attacks emerges. The Telegraph: November 30, 2008:

{2} Andrew Buncombe and Jonathan Owen, Just ten trained terrorists caused
carnage. The Independent: November 30, 2008:

{3} Maseeh Rahman, Mumbai terror attacks: Who could be behind them? The
Guardian: November 27, 2008:

{4} Hasan Suroor, U.K. intelligence suspects Al-Qaeda hand. The Hindu:
November 28, 2008:

{5} Press TV, India links Mumbai attackers to Pakistan. Press TV: November
28, 2008:

{6} Agencies, India blames Pakistan for Mumbai attacks. Gulf News: November
28, 2008:

{7} Mark Mazzetti, U.S. Intelligence Focuses on Pakistani Group. The New
York Times: November 28, 2008:

{8} SATP, Lashkar-e-Toiba: 'Army of the Pure'. South Asia Terrorism Portal:

{9} Gethin Chamberlain, Attacker 'was recruited' at terror group's religious
school. The Scotsman: July 14, 2005:

{10} Michel Chossudovsky, London 7-7 Terror Suspect Linked to British
Intelligence? Global Research: August 1, 2005:

{11} Michel Chossudovsky, The Foiled UK Terror Plot and the "Pakistani
Connection". Global Research: August 14, 2006:

{12} Richard Esposito, et. al., US Warned India in October of Potential
Terror Attack. ABC News: December 1, 2008:

{13} Praveen Swami, Pointed intelligence warnings preceded attacks. The
Hindu: November 30, 2008:

{14} Chidanand Rajghatta, US, UK, Israel ramp up intelligence aid to India.
The Times of India: November 28, 2008:

{15} Foster Klug and Lara Jakes Jordan, US sends FBI agents to India to
investigate attack. AP: November 30, 2008:

{16} IANS, Israeli daily critical of India's `slow' response to terror
strike. Thaindian News: November 28, 2008:

{17} IANS, Two terrorists killed, two arrested in Mumbai. Thaindian News:
November 27, 2008:

{18} Agencies, Four terrorists killed, nine arrested. Express India:
November 27, 2008:

{19} ToI, Arrested terrorist says gang hoped to get away. The Times of
India: November 29, 2008:

{20} Mark Jefferies, Mumbai attacks: Seven terrorists were British, claims
Indian government. Daily Record: November 29, 2008:

{21} Jon Swaine, Mumbai attack: 'British men among terrorists'. The
Telegraph: November 28, 2008:

{22} Justin Davenport, et. al., Massacre in Mumbai: Up to SEVEN gunmen were
British and 'came from same area as 7-7 bombers'. The Daily Mail: December
1, 2008:

{23} Debasish Panigrahi, Taxi with bomb jumped signal, saving many lives.
The Hindustan Times: November 28, 2008:

{24} Vijay V Singh, Was taxi driver aware of bomb in car? The Times of
India: November 29, 2008:

{25} PD, The Israeli Mossad False Flag Operation Strikes In Mumbai. Pakistan
Daily: November 29, 2008:

{26} RT, Mumbai terrorists used Chechen tactics. Russia Today: November 29,

{27} Michel Chossudovsky, Who Is Osama Bin Laden? Global Research: September
12, 2001:

{28} PD, Former ISI Chief Mumbai incident international conspiracy to
deprive Pakistan of atomic power. Pakistan Daily: December 2, 2008:

{29} Yoolim Lee and Naween A. Mangi, Pakistan's Richest Man Defies Terrorism
to Expand Bank Empire. Bloomberg: December 3, 2008:

{30} Sajid Chaudhry, Inevitable conditionalities of IMF start surfacing. The
Daily Times: December 4, 2008:\12\04\story_4-12-2008_pg5

{31} Patricia Goldstone, Aaronsohn's Maps: The Untold Story of the Man who
Might Have Created Peace in the Middle East. Harcourt Trade, 2007: pages

{32} Patricia Goldstone, Aaronsohn's Maps: The Untold Story of the Man who
Might Have Created Peace in the Middle East. Harcourt Trade, 2007: page 22

{33} Niall Ferguson, Empire: The Rise and Demise of the British World Order
and the Lessons for Global Power. Perseus, 2002: pages 193-194

{34} Herbert R. Lottman, Return of the Rothschilds: The Great Banking
Dynasty Through Two Turbulent Centuries. I.B. Tauris, 1995: page 81

{35} Patricia Goldstone, Aaronsohn's Maps: The Untold Story of the Man who
Might Have Created Peace in the Middle East. Harcourt Trade, 2007: pages

{36} HP-Time, The Crescent of Crisis. Time Magazine: January 15, 1979:,9171,919995-1,00.html

{37} Peter Dale Scott, The Road to 9-11: Wealth, Empire, and the Future of
America. University of California Press: 2007: page 67

{38} F. William Engdahl, A Century of War: Anglo-American Oil Politics and
the New World Order. London: Pluto Press, 2004: page 171

{39} Robert Dreyfuss, Devil's Game: How the United States Helped Unleash
Fundamentalist Islam. Owl Books, 2005: page 332-333

{40} Bernard Lewis, Rethinking the Middle East. Foreign Affairs, Fall 1992:
pages 116-117

{41} George Lenczowski, The Arc of Crisis: It's Central Sector. Foreign
Affairs: Summer, 1979: page 796 [40]

{42} Le Nouvel Observateur, The CIA's Intervention in Afghanistan. Global
Research: October 15, 2001: [40]

{43} Frank Viviano, Energy future rides on U.S. war: Conflict centered in
world's oil patch. The San Francisco Chronicle: September 26, 2001:

Andrew G. Marshall is a Research Associate of the Centre for Research on
Globalization (CRG), specializing on geopolitical issues. He is known for
having contributed to breaking the Climate Change consensus in a celebrated
2006 article entitled Global Warming A Convenient Lie, in which he
challenged the findings underlying Al Gore's documentary. He is currently
studying political science and history at Simon Fraser University, British

End notes


Andrew G. Marshall
- Homepage:

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