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Hamid Mir reveals shocking update from FATA

Monday, September 22, 2008 Leave a Comment

Hamid Mir on FATA

Hamid Mir is one of the top TV commentators who has his own TV show called Capital Talk that he does from Islamabad from Pakistan's largest TV channel GEO. He was the last person to interview Osama bin Laden and as I write this I hear his voice on CNN as he is being introduced by Christiane Amanpour, who is saying that he is writing an authorized biography of Osama bin Laden. The video, which is his live broadcast from one of the FATA regions (on September 12th or 13th) is in Urdu (but viewers comments are in English).

Basically, he says the following:

1. This entire place is lost to Pakistan...it is not Pakistan anymore....no one here talks of Pakistan....the writ of Pakistan government does not run here.

2. The army, which is camped in this entire region does not fight the Taliban because they are strong and the army is afraid of fighting with them. Instead they bomb and kill innocent civilians.
3. America too only kills innocent civilians and none of their strikes ever has killed any Taliban or al-Qaeda fighters and he challenges America to produce any shred of evidence to the contrary.

4. He also challenges the Pakistan army to give a shred of evidence of having killed one Taliban fighter, just one - name, picture or produce a body. He believes, Pakistan army is only 'pretending to kill Taliban to extract money from the USA while America is doing its own dirty work to involve Pakistan in its nefarious scheme.

5. He says he wrote a scathing op-ed that was published in Pakistan's largest Urdu daily (Jung), in which he criticized President Zardari for holding his first press conference with President Hamid Karzai. President Zardari called him (presumably on Sept. 8th) and said why he was so angry and he told him how he has betrayed the trust of Pakistani people by inviting Karzai. Mir says, Zardari appeared 'weak' in response.

Given what is doing the rounds in Pakistan, the biggest challenge concurrently facing Pakistani army and the government is that of communication and credibility. This is as important if not more than military action and PPP government has to urgently address it. .At one extreme Pakistanis think that Hamid Mir is a Taliban sympathizer, and on another some think he is on America's payroll and then there are some who think he is a brave and truthful journalist. Personally, I am not too impressed with his analytical abilities, which he doesn't seem to exhibit
much of..cerebral or thoughtful he is not.....but he does have access to President Zardari, Nawaz Sharif and others (including the Taliban) and he does impress me with his ability to speak plainly if rather rashly and without much force of argument. However, this video is doing the rounds and many people believe what he is saying.