Crossfire War – Rapid Fire News=Tehran – Beijing – Islamabad Watch – South Asia Theatre: Tehran – Riyadh – Beijing – Kabul – Katmandu – Tashkent – Dhaka – Islamabad/Srinagar – Arunachal Pradesh – Delhi; Heavy Fighting in Kashmir Extends into Fourth Day – Two Actions – India Sends Reinforcements – Possible Beginning of Wider Campaign – Tehran – Damascus Train Hamas to Prepare Longer Range – More Powerful Qassam Rocket – Saudi King Abdullah Visits Ankara in Support of Turkey’s Invasion of N. Iraq
Night Watch: SADPORA – The Pakistan Tribune-IANS quoted Indian Brigadier A. K. Mathur of the Rashtriya Rifles after four days of fighting between Indian security forces and Islamic militants based in Pakistan’s part of Kashmir. “Sadpora (Patten) gunfight ended today (Friday) with the killing of five LeT (Lashkar-e-Taiba) militants. We also lost a major and three soldiers.” Another action began against militants of the same unit Thursday night and from latest reports the fighting is continuing with India sending reinforcements. A local resident, speaking by phone said, “We can hear loud explosions and exchange of fire. Movement in the area is restricted and there is a heavy Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) police deployment.” [PAKTRIBUNE]
Sadpora – This engagement may not be quite over since WebIndia123 has just quoted a senior police officer, “The operation is in the final stages and may conclude any time tonight (Saturday).”
I would not be surprised if this is the vanguard of Pakistan President General Pervez Musharraf’s “Action Plan” which he presented to Tehran in February. If so then this is the beginning of a wider campaign and not just another in a series of isolated, uncoordinated incidents. Isolated action is not enough to force India to use its hot pursuit policy and attack the Islamic militant bases inside Pakistan’s part of Kashmir.
As I mentioned at the start of the State of Emergency I suspect Musharraf imposed it as a way of preparing Pakistan for full scale war with India and to take advantage of the military support from China-Saudi Arabia and Iran. [WEBINDIA]
In November last year Beijing’s Ambassador to Delhi declared northeast India-Arunachal Pradesh is Chinese territory and the following month China conducted ground forces maneuvers with Pakistan just west of Kashmir. Arunachal Pradesh is the area China invaded in October 1962 for one month. The fighting extended south into Assam state on the Bay of Bengal and India fired its Defense Minister afterward. Recently Delhi has increased its defenses in Arunachal Pradesh saying there will be no repeat of 1962. Also in December 2006 Saudi Arabia had maneuvers with Pakistan in the eastern Punjab and during the mid-1980s purchased 50-60 CSS-2 ballistic missiles from China. (Reuters Feb. 15,2004) The missile has a 2,500 mile (4,000 km) range and can reach all of India. The year long exercises Tehran conducted in 2006 has indicated Iran is now ready to join the conflict, which is really a continuation of the Islamic uprising in Kashmir that began in 1989-November.
Ramallah – Debka is reporting the reason there has been a reduction in Qassam rocket fire from Gaza is due to Tehran-Damascus training Hamas members in the manufacturing and firing of an advanced Qassam rocket with a longer range, larger warhead and greater accuracy. Hamas members have returned from training by Iran Revolutionary Guards and Syrian technicians in the use of a Qassam that has a range now of 15 miles (25 km) and a 7 pound (3 kilos) warhead.
A half-million Israelis are now within the range of this rocket including residents in the Greater Tel Aviv area since this rocket will also be fired from the West Bank. The rockets are right now being made ready in several secret locations not only in Gaza but several towns in the West Bank and with the complete understanding by the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank headed by Mahmoud Abbas, who presents a facade of cooperating with Israel and Washington. [DEBKA]
Hezbollah-Damascus-Tehran are prepared to enter the war this year that began with the Qassam and mortar attacks from Gaza in mid-March. This is obviously the greatest military threat Israel has ever faced since its re-establishment in 1948 and will force Jerusalem to use everything in its arsenal including nuclear weapons.
Ankara – Saudi Arabia King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz arrived in Ankara as a show of official support for Turkey’s regional policies concerning West Asia (Middle East) especially Iraq and Ankara’s military actions and final preparations for its invasion against Kurdish fighters of the PKK. Asharq Al-Awsat/Reuters report the situation in Lebanon was also discussed between King Abdullah and Turkey President Abdullah Gul as well as other regional issues. The monarch’s visit at this time, the eve of Turkey’s invasion, is immensely significant because it signals Ankara has virtually ended any strategic cooperation with major powers in the West. It is as if the two heads of state are saying the West is the wave of the past, a regressive influence, a defeated presence. The office of Turkey’s President issued this statement, “The views of our respective countries on Middle East issues, primarily Iraq and the Palestinian problem, are not only similar but complimentary. The King’s visit is seen as especially significant with respect to establishing security and stability in Iraq and protecting its territorial integrity during this process.” [ASHRAQALAWSAT]
For an official statement this one is especially frank and honest. Ankara-Riyadh are aware the lost alliance of London-Washington are a spent force and Islamic governments in the region will succeed where the West has failed, Islam will bring stability where the West could not. Not only in Iraq but other countries in the region as well. Regular readers of crossfirewar.com know I have often stated no Islamic government in the region wanted to see another Islamic country again occupied by the West, so their first cooperation was sending and supporting Islamic fighters attacking the occupation. Next, Turkey-Iran’s invasion of Kurdish areas, an extension of their bombardment of Kurdish areas near their borders.
Turkey-Saudi Arabia first established strategic relations in 1929 and their cooperation has never been more serious than it is now. Accompanying the Saudi King was Foreign Minister Prince Saud Al-Faisal who held separate more detailed discussions with Turkey Foreign Minister Ali Babacan.