Monday, October 06, 2008

Kidnapped Pole in Pakistan


It’s been over a week now since Piotr Stanczak was abducted by Taliban in the northwest of Pakistan, near the Afghan border. What are his odds of getting him back to Poland, as Pakistan seems to be coming apart at the seams?

Stanczak was working for a company looking for oil when three, maybe four Taliban ambushed his vehicle, killed his Pakistani driver, bodyguard and one other person, then took the Pole and disappeared into the mountains that surround the region of Attock.

Piotr follows two Chinese telecom engineers who were also abducted in the same region back in August. The two Chinese may be alive, as last week a spokesman for the Taliban said that they would exchange them for prisoners arrested by the Pakistani army - maybe over 100 of them.

Since Piotr’s abduction, a conflict has broken out between Pakistani officials and the company he works for, Geofizyka Krakow Ltd, as to who was to blame for the kidnapping. The prime minister of Pakistan and local police officers claim that Geofizyka did not avail themselves to security provided for them, and were negligent in the precautions they took before sending workers out on field trips. The Polish company and people who know Stanczak say that the security measures he left the base with on September 28 were standard and in keeping with guidelines.

There was also a nasty altercation between the Polish head of the Geofizyka base in Pakistan and the journalists who descended on the compound after the kidnapping took place.

Pakistan on the edge

The region the abduction occurred in is the most dangerous in Pakistan and is a spill over of the war in Afghanistan and the ‘War on Terror’ in general. On Sunday, the home of the North West Frontier Province's chief minister, Amir Haider Khan Hoti, was attacked by rockets, though nobody was killed.

Suicide bombers stalk the region, a haven for Islamic militants of the al-Qaida type and their whacky Taliban friends, who have regained support since the US-led invasion of Afghanistan has produced little economic fruit, and the recent incursions by American forces into the north-west of Pakistan. This is where many think Weird-Beard-in-Chief, Osama bin Laden is hanging out.

The instability in the region has been caused, in part, by Bush’s war on terror. Invasions by foreign forces usually have that effect. It’s a lesson neocons and liberal interventionists appear slow to learn. This is why the War on Terror was a mistake from its beginning.

Barrack Obama has made much in his presidential campaign of his opposition to the Iraq war before it began. Well, good - I have always opposed it, too. But where we differ is that he opposed the war in Iraq because, as he sees it, it distracted from the real objective: to go get Osama!

But does he really think that throwing more troops into Afghanistan would mean peace and security for both Afghans and Americans; that the world would be a more peaceful and happy place all round?

This is a delusion. Afghans have no trouble fighting large armies occupying their country - ask a Soviet Afghanistan veteran. The war on terror was always doomed to fail because it was trying to find the location of an abstract noun - terror.

Problem was, as Rumsfeld said in many Whitehouse meetings at the time - according to Bob Woodward - “There just ain’t enough targets in Afghanistan…” - meaning for Washington to look like it was “doing something” about 9/11, it would need a more spectacular “shock and awe” than bombing a few, low grade targets in one of the most undeveloped and poorest nation in the world.

No, to be really shocking and awful then Iraq would have to be next.

Barrack Obama supports a policy of American troops going into Pakistan in pursuit of Taliban and other Islamists. If that happens on a regular basis then the region will destabilise still further, Pakistan will disintegrate some more, and many more foreign workers will disappear into the lawless mountains that run along a front line in America’s war on terror.

more?
‘Geofizyka’s security arrangements normal, not negligent’, thenews.pl, Oct 6
Is al-Qaeda winning?, BBC, audio, 23 minutes

32 comments:

ge'ez said...

Uh, isn't it the Taliban that are destabilizing the area?

jannowak57 said...

beatroot said.. “It’s been over a week now since Piotr Stanczak was abducted by Taliban”

Would one say there are inheren risks involved in working in a war zone. I truly hope no one is stupid enough to pay a ransom thereby making every Pole a potential target for kidnapping. Israel is the example of how to handle this. However if the Pakistanis choose to exchange prisoners that’s different.

beatroot said.. “The instability in the region has been caused, in part, by Bush’s war on terror”

To cause instability you first need some stability to start with this area has not been under the control of Pakistan’s central government since independence in 1947.This is and was a lawless area. The middle ages still exist here.

beatroot said.. “War on Terror was a mistake from its beginning.”

Are they going to go away if we just leave them alone? The Saudis were probably mistaken in financing the Islamo Fascists in the first place and not serious about exploiting Islam to serve a violent political vision.

beatroot said.. “Afghans have no trouble fighting large armies occupying their country”

The Afghan success against the Russians was bot and paid for by the US with the Saudis being coerced to match the effort dollar for dollar. The supplies, logistics and training were organized by the CIA and channelled trough Pakistan and it intelligence service. The Afghans got the privilege of supplying the cannon fodder, as the intention was to fight to the last Afghan. Without external supplies and money the Taliban cannot come close to mounting the same effort they put forward against the Russians. Their current cash cow is the drug trade.

If the Americans leave thereby allowing the Taliban to regain control the jihadists will have a sanctuary and training area more secure than the current tribal areas of Pakistan.

Pakistan is already disintegrating from it’s own internal divisions and doesn’t need the US to complete the process.

beatroot said...

Geez
Uh, isn't it the Taliban that are destabilizing the area?

Can you show me a time when Taliban destabilised a region? The only thing that the Taliban were good at once they had won the civil war in Afghanistan after the Soviets left and a bunch of tribal chancers descended on Kabul, was keeping things stable. It was only after the US invasion that the area flared up again.

Jan
To cause instability you first need some stability to start with this area has not been under the control of Pakistan’s central government since independence in 1947.This is and was a lawless area. The middle ages still exist here.

I think you are committing the usual ahistorical sin of thinking that just because there has been lots of conflict before it means that there is the same cause and nature of the instability at present.

Pakistan has always had a rocky history in the way that India has, generally, not had. No army coup etc. But what you are seeing now in Pakistan is of a totally different cause than before. Pakistan is actually a more extreme version of modern day Turkey. Left wing politics has diminished. Secularism is in decline. So you have the emergence of a post-cold war Islamic militancy. And everything the West does seems to encourage that development.

Are they going to go away if we just leave them alone?

Again, another myth surrounding 9/11. The Taliban were a deeply retrogressive step for Afghanis. But they were nothing to do with 9/11. Just because there were a few al-qaida camps there does not explain what happened on 9/11. The people who committed 9/11 were radicalised, actually, in Hamburg, Germany. Jumping over sticks in Afghanistan had nothing to do with it. 9/11 was done by middle class Arabs who found “jihad” after they moved to the West. Now what does that say about the West?

Afghanistan is a side issue to the limited rise of al-qaida. Therefore, the war on terror its present form is waste of time and lives.

ge'ez said...

The Taliban are destabilizing Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iraq now.

And yea, they stabilized Afghanistan after they got rid of the Russians much to the delight of women who loved to wear burkas and get stoned to death.

jannowak57 said...

beatroot said: “The only thing that the Taliban were good at once they had won the civil war in Afghanistan after the Soviets left and a bunch of tribal chancers descended on Kabul, was keeping things stable”

The Taliban was not in control of all of Afghanistan and was still fighting a civil war when the Americans arrived. Lets get one thing straight there was no great American invasion, more like the CIA with bags of cash looking for friends.

The Taliban had nothing to do with 911 but they accepted the terrorist training camps and infrastructure therefore the share responsibility. I hope your not going to suggest they didn’t know that these people were going to proceed with some sort of terrorism against the West.

The Pakistanis helped create the Taliban with the idea of restoring some order to Afghanistan and maintaining some influence there. To now be bit on the ass by homegrown Taliban is justice. The Pakistanis have only themselves to blame, failure to establish a functional state and extent the rule of law throughout the entirety of the country will cost them dearly. This is a third world country in the classic sense you get into power and steal then it’s the next guy’s turn. I understand they call the president Mr 10% based on his history of skimming 10% for himself whenever there was a government project. If the Pakistani state were not such a miserable failure than radical Islam would not look so good to so many.

The average Pakistani can be described as powerless, poor and ignorant, therefore ready for the local Taliban.

Digger Boy said...

I don't know the answer to this question, but I am curious: Has terrorism conducted by extremists ever been resolved by anything other than beating the living crap out of the terrorists? Can anyone tell me of a time where extremists were pacified through negotiations? Can anyone relate a verifiable story?

ge'ez said...

There are alternatives to "negotiations" besides warfare.

Secular schools in Pakistan to counterbalance the madrassas would be a good start.

And most of the 9/11 terrorists were linked to some nasty western imam. Hopefully, these guys are now being watched a lot more closely.

ge'ez said...

BR, you say one thing and the article you cite says something altogether different:

BR: "Barrack Obama supports a policy of American troops going into Pakistan in pursuit of Taliban and other Islamists."

The article you link: "The Democratic presidential nominee has raised the prospect of U.S. military activity in Pakistan under three basic criteria: first, Washington possesses credible intelligence about the location of such targets; second, the targets are, as Obama said Friday “top-level lieutenants” to bin Laden or bin Laden himself; and third, the Pakistani government will not or cannot act itself.

Obama’s position illustrates perhaps the most vexing problem in the U.S.-led war on terrorism. Last August, a National Intelligence Estimate — an assessment of a situation from the nation’s 16 intelligence agencies — found that Al Qaeda had reestablished ” a safehaven in the Pakistan Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA),” meaning that it possessed freedom of action to regenerate “operational lieutenants, and its top leadership.”

Some former diplomats, Army officers and other government officials fear destabilization occuring if unilateral U.S. military activities escalate.

“Each attack blamed on us makes us more unpopular,” said Ronald Neumann, the U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan from 2005 to 2007. Yet, Neumann added, “If you had a clear high-value target or no collateral damage, what would be the difference in the order Obama proposes to give than what [Bush is] doing now? I don’t see it.”

jannowak57 said...

ge'ez said...”Secular schools in Pakistan to counterbalance the madrassas would be a good start.”

The madrassas are a real problem; they offer no actual education of any practical use and rely on memorization of the Koran as the main focus of the teaching. With substantial aid from the Saudis these schools teach the intolerant and violent Wahabi version of Islam. Which is actually at variance to the local traditions and religious practices.

Pakistan Federally Administered Tribal Areas now form not only save haven for Al-Qaeda but are a sanctuary for the Afghan Taliban without which they could not continue to operate. Pakistan’s natonal survival now depends on acting to establish the control of the central government in this area.

ge'ez said...

Just came across this unrelated but very cool photography zine from Poland:

http://www.privatephotoreview.com/en/review/index.php/riv/63

beakerkin said...

Once again we have the salonist Beatroot displaying his own ignorance. A basic look at the bio of Gulbadin Heckmatyar reveals he was a communist. Furthermore even if you read the newspapers of the era Heckmatyar colaberated with the Soviets. Where does Heckmatyar hang
his hat today?.... with the Taliban

The region was lawless as far back as the days of the British empire and likely long before that as well. Of course genuine history is not something the Beatroot wastes his time on.

If the Beatroot bothered to look at a basic demography of the region he would know that 60% of Afghans are
Pashtuns and this group extends to
the Pakistani side of the border as
well. In fact they are but one of the genuine groups the far left salonistas remain woefully ignorant
of while rabidly obsessing over a politically contrived ethnicity. Thus it should come a zero surprise
that a largely Pashtun based movement has supporters on the Pakistani side of the border.

When people work in war zones they understand the risks they take.

ge'ez said...

So please be a patriot and volunteer!

beatroot said...

Pashtuns and this group extends to
the Pakistani side of the border as
well. In fact they are but one of the genuine groups the far left salonistas remain woefully ignorant
of while rabidly obsessing over a politically contrived ethnicity.


That’s a strange but almost poetic continence. What it means is anyone’s guess, however.

Gulbadin Heckmatyar …communist!!!?

Um….sorry, you lost me there.

As to the point Freakogrungekin is getting across - that the region has always been “lawless”, well…

It’s true that when outsiders invade, or unduly try to influence, what is going on their region, then yes, they get a little upset about this. And tribes make alliances which change all the time. The Taliban is just good at getting these different factions to unite better than “the northern alliance”, which obviously has failed…again (remember the aftermath of the Soviet pullout? Chaos in Kabul. Enter Taliban. The rest is history.

So, yeah - that region gets destabilised when invaded by the British, the Soviets…the US. Intervention is the problem, not the solution to the problem it helps cause in the first place.

beakerkin said...

Beatroot

The area was unstable long before the British got there.You need to read history beyond Mickey Marxist.

Gulbadin Heckmatyar was a Communist and extensively was a traitor to the rebels. The Northern aliance and Shah Masoud who did the bulk of the fighting while the rest of the clowns paid lip service was the first man killed by Al Queda on 9-10.

The Taliban was infiltrated by the Communists and the ISI lost control. In reality Heckmatyar was
and remains a commie mole. Commies
use flunkies like Heckmatyar to infiltrate groups.

Feel free to look at Heckmayar's bio. This is not news to someone who has followed the region since 1980 and communist butchery of yet
another people.

Geez: You may aspire to be a serf
but realistically you are just the village idiot.

ge'ez said...

Chicken shit chicken hawk. Bwawwwk!

beatroot said...

Squaaaak!

Freakkin talks as if the ''northern alliance were the good guys and everyone else bad. If you have been following the region since 1980 you will know that these alliances are temporary and oppotunistic. For instance, fighting on the same side as what became the northern allaince against the communists was...osama bin laden.

If you have been folliwing developments since 1980 then you will know that things are not black and white in afghanistan.

beakerkin said...

Wrong Beatroot

The communists invaded and butchered the population. They fully intended to make Afghanistan a satellite.

Shah Massoud was a genuine patriot who fought the communist butchers tooth and nail while Hekmatyar pretended. You clearly know nothing and are off into amoral mode.

Osama was at best a bit player and a flunky of the ISI. Furthermore he
would not have been there in the first place had the communists not
attempted to colonize. Osama and Heckmayar worked closely and were based in Pakistan while Masoud was on the front line.

What did the pompous salon set say or do about the Afghan invasion?

ge'ez said...

What did you do, Sneakerskin?

Bwaaaak!

beatroot said...

What did the salin do about WHICH invasion of afghanistan?

beakerkin said...

Geez be a good serf and fetch some
alcohol. Your master is going to need it. After that make yourself useful and dig a new out house.

Funny but I do not remember a peep from the salon set when the Soviets were using mines shaped like toys, Chemical warfare or butchering the locals. I do not remember it when the Cubans were butchering Ethiopians and Angolans. I do not remember it when the Sandinazis were mowing down the Indians. I do not remember it when Pol Pot was killing his own.

The far left is and will always be a joke.

ge'ez said...

Chicken hawks will always be chickens. Bwaaawk! Volunteer to go fight in Afghanistan, please!

Anonymous said...

When is the funeral?

Simon Mol dies in hospital

Created: 13.10.2008 07:13
Simon Mol, the Cameroonian charged with intentionally infecting several Polish women with HIV, died in a hospital, Saturday night.



Last week Mol’s trial was suspended due to his ill health after being released from detention in September and transported to one of Warsaw’s hospitals. Medical staff described his condition, linked to his HIV infection, as “critical”. Reputedly M. refused to undergo medical treatment.



The public prosecutor’s office in Poland established that the Cameroonian infected over 40 women with HIV. He himself claimed that he was not aware of his condition.



He was arrested in January 2007. The trial, which began in July this year involved a total of 13 charges levelled against him – 11 in connection with intentionally infecting women with HIV, one of exposing a women to the disease, and one of possessing cold weapon without a permit. He was facing 10 years in prison.




The Cameroonian first arrived in Poland in 1999. He claimed to be a political refugee and that he was persecuted in Cameroon for publishing an article on a corruption scandal in the government. However, Polish media reported later on that his life history was to a great extent a fabrication. (jm)

beatroot said...

I don't know. I imagine arrangements will be ...complicated.

beakerkin said...

Geez

I left private industry to serve in government in a security related position. You are barking up the wrong tree.I am past the age of enlistment.

Obama and Clinton never served a day as did almost every war critic.
Those who do serve are further to the right than an idiot like yourself can ever fathom.



The Mol story is larger than the arrogant elites like Beatroot or the racist reductionist types understand.

The story remains about the role of
government and asylum abuse. Mol was never deserving of an asylum
claim. He was carrying a dangerous
communicable disease that was a serious danger to the general public.

The first and primary function of government is to protect its citizens. Even if Mol were in danger, the primary duty of a responsible government is to protect its citizens.

The Beatroot seems to forget that freak cases also demonstrate the need to change laws. The Polish people are fully capable of deciding their own laws without the bombastic disrespect of expatriates.

No person should celebrate the death of any person. Mol was evil
and his life showed an utter disregard for laws and human decency.

ge'ez said...

You're over 44?

And, how long's it been since 2001?

So you're at least 51!

Otherwise... Bwwwaaaaack!

When did Rush Limburger enlist? Cheney? And the rest of the neo-con artist chicken hawks?

beakerkin said...

When did Zinn, Chomsky, Finkelstein
or any other communist pariah serve.What war did Bill Clinton, Barak Obama or Barney Frank serve in. You seem to forget that the United States has voluntary service. There are plenty of dedicated professionals who serve as calling.

My calling is quite different and I can be mandated into combat zones. This is unlikely as I serve in an area that has high turnover and very low experience. My current assignment makes any deployment unlikely.

When you use Neocon are you using it as a standard anti-semitic slur?
The term Neocon does not apply to someone who has always been a classic anticommunist. We know that
imbeciles often use Neocon and Jew
interchangeably.

Limbaugh has never been a leftist of any type and the term in no way
describes him or Cheeney. The term was invented by socialist stooge Michael Harington to disparage those who walked away from Marx.



Now fetch some alcohol like a good
servant. Any serious conversation is above your limited IQ.

ge'ez said...

Why didn't you enlist? Why? Are you a patriot? I think you are a communist stooge!

Your calling? A *Yankee* Doodle Dandy!

beakerkin said...

I am past the age of enlistment. Thinking is not something you are capable of.

I am serving in another capacity and left a well paying career to do so. I can be deployed to a war zone, but my current assignment precludes any movement.

You are obviously a moron of superior ability. Your job must be to make Beatroot look intelligent in comparison.

ge'ez said...

Were you past the age of enlistment in 2001?

Hey, I'm on corporate welfare. Why should I work when there's turkeys like you? I work for AIG. BTW, thanks for the massage. Helga is great!

denz said...

Well I didn't follow this discussion till the end, especially when I felt its getting a little off the stage.
Theres a lot of talk about Pakistan as I can see and the biggest mistake some folks are making is to generalize Pakistanis as homogeneous. In a country where temperature from -40 to 40 celsius can be found on the same day cannot possibly have a single group of integrated population. Its at the confluence of India, China, former Soviet, Afghanistan and Middle East and naturally people tend be culturally closer to their immediate neighbors.

Another generalization that since Pakistanis are poor and powerless therefore they are mostly looking forward to extremist element taking over, is ridiculous. The center of the trouble i.e the tribal areas and neighboring province has given their vote to a leftist secular party in the recent election. Other provinces which are generally away from the heart of trouble have shown similar trends.

An average Pakistani is powerless but considering that democracy has just touched the ground after long rule of US backed dictatorship, it will take them a while to realize their rights. An average Pakistani is though poor by western standards, however considering that 24% have crossed the poverty line, an average Pakistani is making barely enough to sustain his family. A while ago, an average Pakistani was ignorant but a recent wave of dozens of semi westernized independent private channels have started changing the awareness levels, and today, political and intellectual talk shows are more famous than soap operas.
Many might disagree with the above but one thing is for sure that an average Pakistani is likely to get goose bumps thinking of living in a taliban style country. No one is looking forward to them, population at large despises them. They have only managed to generate a marginal support for themselves in the group that represents the revenge element and is likely affected by the war in one way or other.

Its not such a smart idea to simplify the fifth largest country in the world.

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