What is state failure? See my conceptualisation of state failure on the right flank below.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

The attacks on Afghan Shiites

From the New York Times' take on the coordinated - Kabul, Kandahar and Mazar-i-Sharif - attacks on Shiites, coming during Ashura and very clearly sending a message connected to the Bonn II conference:
"Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (...) has no previous known operations in Afghanistan, however, so no one seriously thought Lashkar-e-Jhangvi could carry out a coordinated series of three nearly simultaneous bombings in three Afghan cities without substantial support from somewhere."
This is partly wrong. To my best knowledge, Lashkar-e-Jhangvi as well as its mother organisation, Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan, were represented in the ranks of Pakistanis fighting alongside the Taliban, before 2001, in their battles against remaining opposition forces in northern Afghanistan, for example in the battle for Taloqan.

Having said that, they went there on organised tours, so this is not to doubt the NYT's speculation about the help provided to L-e-J's militants.

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