#RAWattacksAfghanParliament: Why Pakistani Twitterati blamed India for Taliban attack

How brazen can brazen be? Consider the voices emanating from Pakistan over Monday’s terror attack on the Afghan parliament and this question will ring out loudly.

Many Pakistanis seriously believe that India’s Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) choreographed the terror attack on Afghan parliament. #RAWattacksAfghanParliament has been the top trending subject on Pakistan Twitter since news of attack on Afghan parliament broke out.

#RAWattacksAfghanParliament: Why Pakistani Twitterati blamed India for Taliban attack

An Afghan security personnel runs at the site of an attack in front of Parliament building in Kabul . AFP

The top trending subject highlights Indian defence minister Manohar Parikkar’s reported remark that "You have to neutralise terrorist through terrorist only". It also quotes him as saying that the Modi government is different from the previous one because it has given the Indian Army a free hand to tackle terrorists through intelligence.

An objective and dispassionate account of the attack can be read in the London Telegraph here

Needless to say, such campaigns on social media are an integral feature of the psyops of Pakistani intelligence and security establishments. Consider some of the tweets soaked in malicious Pakistani propaganda.

Attempts have been made by Pakistani spin doctors to clothe their outlandish claims with some weird strategic logic, an example of which can be seen here.

These spin doctors are claiming that RAW was behind Monday’s Afghan parliament attack as India is deeply upset over the intelligence deal signed last month between Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and Afghanistan’s National Directorate of Security (NDS).

The line being pushed by the Pakistani intelligence brass over the Afghan parliament attack is that “the only beneficiary” of this terror attack is India as it would cause strain in Afghanistan-Pakistan ties.

The first-of-its-kind deal between the two intelligence agencies followed a visit by Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, accompanied with Army Chief Gen Raheel Sharif and ISI Chief Lt Gen Rizwan Akhtar, to Kabul in May 2015 aims at taking the level of intelligence cooperation between the two countries sharing a border of 1700 kms to another level.

The pact envisages cooperation in counter-terrorism operations and joint probe of terror suspects. Besides, the ISI would also equip the NDS and train its personnel. During this trip, the Pakistan government denounced Taliban and said that future violence by the militant group would be treated as terrorism.

ISPR’s Maj Gen Asim Bajwa said, "MoU signed by ISI and NDS includes intelligence sharing, complementary and coordinated intel operations on respective sides." Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani’s spokesman Ajmal Abidy was quoted by Afghanistan’s ToloNews, as saying: “The focus of this agreement is mostly on jointly fighting terrorism.” The ToloNews also quoted officials of the previous Karzai government as saying that no such agreement existed in the past.

The real truth is light years away. Obviously, Pakistan is trying to pre-empt India by blaming its external intelligence agency before international agencies eventually turn heat on Islamabad.

The real victim here is Afghan President Ashraf Ghani who decided to sup with the devil against the recommendation of his intelligence brass in sealing the deal with the ISI.

The fact that the Taliban has claimed responsibility for the attack shows that Taliban is no longer a pet parrot of ISI. Moreover, the attack coincides with the Taliban wresting control of yet another district in Afghanistan’s Kunduz province.

Taliban launches spring offensive in Afghanistan every year. The real test of President Ghani, who is having acute differences with his country’s CEO Abdullah Abdullah, lies in how ferocious and bloody the Taliban’s spring offensive is going to be this time.

As for India, it enjoys massive grassroots-level support in Afghanistan, despite the fact that it has pumped in only $2.4 billion of investment in that country against scores of billions pumped in by the West. But the Indian investment has given benefit to the common man and that’s why it has a vibrant intelligence network in Afghanistan.

That doesn’t mean that India can afford to be complacent. The attack on Afghan parliament was on the old building. India is constructing the new parliament building which is nearly complete at the cost of over $125 million. Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be traveling to Kabul later this year to inaugurate the new parliament building.

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Updated Date: Jun 23, 2015 15:18:52 IST

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