‘American double standards on war on terror exposed’by Opinion Express June 1, 2011 0 comments
Pakistani-American David Coleman Headley, accused of plotting the 26/11 Mumbai attacks at the behest of Lashkar- e-Toiba (LeT) and conspiring to target a Danish newspaper, pleaded guilty to all terror charges before a US court in Chicago. As on expected lines in a plea bargain, Headley has been assured of no extradition to India in return. Also there will be no death penalty for Headley. But Indian authorities can access him in the United States and can question him, The deal agreed on between Headley and US prosecutors requires that he may have to testify in a foreign court while in US custody. Now the broader question is the use of such interrogation when Indian government cannot punish a person for the heinous crime committed and confessed by him.
A 36-page plea agreement containing a detailed recitation of Headley’s participation in terror conspiracies was presented when he changed his plea to guilty. The agreement says that “defendant agrees that, when directed by the US attorney’s office, he will fully and truthfully testify in any foreign judicial proceedings held in the US by way of deposition, video conferencing or letters rogratory. Defendant agrees to the postponement of his sentencing until after the conclusion of his interrogation.” This means Indian authorities can question Headley in the United States. So Headley could have to testify in the 26/11 trial currently underway in Mumbai.
As the plea bargain agreed on does not foreclose the option of India getting access to David Headley, the ball is now in India’s court to take advantage of this opportunity and question Headley directly though with a rider that he will not be punished by Indian courts for the crime committed against Indians. Headley admitting to all the charges on 26/11only confirms what India has been maintaining that the terror attacks were plotted and carried out by handlers in Pakistan.
In its dossiers to Pakistan, India has named several terrorists including Hafiz Saeed, Muzammil Bhat, Abu Hamza, Abu Kafa, and Usman. India also wants Ilyas Kashmiri, an Al-Qaida commander hiding in Waziristan. Headley’s guilty plea also strengthens the belief of India’s intelligence and investigating agencies that he visited different places in India as part of a larger terror plot.
Headley also won’t be allowed extradition to Denmark and Pakistan and there will be no trial for Headley. “The defendant shall not be extradited to the Republic of India, the Kingdom of Denmark, or the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, respectively, for any offenses for which he has been convicted in accordance with this plea,” the plea agreement said.
Speculation has turned into reality: Headley’s guilty plea was indeed a bargain tactic for a lighter sentence. In return he will give information that can unravel the larger terror plot. What it actually does is strengthens the belief that Headley was once an American agent who turned rogue and joined terrorists, and the US will go to any length to prevent him from spilling the beans.
India is more suspicious because Headley was on the FBI radar for over a year before his arrest. The US did not share this intelligence. Headley was under surveillance a month before 26/11. Still no information was shared, even though the FBI had details on potential terror strike on Indian hotels. The worst: Headley visited India after 26/11, a visit the US was aware of and yet did not tell India.
Besides, case files show that back in 1998, Headley was a heroin smuggler who got off lightly after he agreed to be an undercover agent for US Drug Enforcement Administration. Sources say, sometime during this stint, Headley became a double agent and started working for the Lashkar -e-Toiba.
But with access to Headley, India should now be able to piece together the larger terror jigsaw puzzle of the subcontinent. At the 26/11 court in Mumbai, where terrorist Ajmal Kasab and others are being tried, Headley is just one of many accused. His absence will not stall or weaken the ongoing trial. And without Headley, India will not be able to piece together, the stifling patchwork quilt of terror stitched across the subcontinent. So the little respite is a welcome relief for Indian authorities battling terrorism with cosmetic support or without any external support.
Moreover it is the duty of Indian government to clearly inform US law enforcement agencies that their double standards in dealing with so called war on terror will ultimately hit them harder. The innocent ordinary peace loving citizen of world’s strongest country have suffered tremendous blows post 9/11 incident and the faulty macro policy of their government of selective target mapping and too much of cunningness in selecting “appropriate human resource” will further harm US interest, both in their country and globally.
The US is only interested in protecting their own “Sleeper cells” in Asia and only God knows how many more David Headley’s are in place to “Start acts of terrorism” so that the US can march into countries under the pretence of fighting and helping the suffering country from Terrorism when in fact they themselves have used their own trained pawns/undercover agents (David Headley’s) to create more fear and unrest. The US is “fanning the flames of Terrorism “and it is plain to see in this David Headley case as One of their own undercover former DEA /CIA agents was tracked/caught by the focused and highly professional Indian Intelligence services with ALL the evidence.
The PURE facts, logical Questions are as follows:
1. David Headley changed his name from “Sayed Daood Gilani” in 2006 – He could only have changed his name/identification and passport details in the US “SO”…WHY Were the US authorities NOT suspicious that a Muslim name was being changed into an English name for all I.D Documents??? Why did they (The US Authorities CIA/FBI etc…) not interrogate and question Sayed Daood Gilani (a.ka. David Headley) MORE thoroughly/OR stopped him boarding the air flights especially when he was flying to Pakistan/India where Westerners were more likely to be targeted and threatened?!? It makes NO difference IF theUS authorities were tracking David Headley because they did not alert the Indian Intelligence services in “Precise Time mode” as that would have saved the innocent deaths of 175 people, including six Americans!! Does that mean that the deaths of 6 Americans are more valuable than the deaths of 169 Indians?!
2. The US sent there investigators into India immediately after the Taj Hotel terrorist act for only two reasons which are as follows:
1. – To clear up the mess and to see/divert any evidence so that there pawn (David Headley)was safely back in their hands beforefull interrogation wasc o n d u c t e db ythe Indian Authorities .
2. – To show the rest of the World and media that the US was a “knight in white shining armor” coming to the rescue of India as the US used “Information Warfare” with misleading stories/accusations, false promises and “fanning the flames of hatred” between India and Pakistan so that they “The USA” were with India in the fight against terror. This “USA Info Warfare Tactic” would make Pakistan authorities feel under more pressure to allow US/NATO Troops into the country so that the US could continue their war offensive in Afghanistan and Warizstan. All this US noise about “Fighting Terrorism…We are on India’s Side against this shocking terrorist act…etc…” Would also make/made Pakistan more scared that the USA and India would be crossing into their country as a “combined” army to fight Terrorism. It was a huge publicity boast for the US and their pretentious “War against Terror” as the World Media was covering the story.
The facts AND Truth once again: THE USA HAS NO RIGHT TO HOLD/QUESTION OR SENTENCE “David Headley” when he has committed the shocking terrorist acts in India on Indian Soil. ONLY INDIA HAS THIS RIGHT AFTER “FULL” INTEROGATION SO THAT INDIA CAN SAFELY STOP AND PROTECT ANYMORE ACTS BY THIS AMERICAN TERRORIST AND HIS/OTHER AMERICAN TERRORIST CELLS IN OUR GREAT COUNTRY INDIA! David Headley is MORE of a Risk to India/Asia Security than the USA SO why the hell is the USA being the Judge and Jury of who questions him and who sentences him?!?!? That would be understandable IF David Headley had plans or blue prints in his procession with USA Targets and Cities that he was gathering/photographing entry/exit points for terrorist activities on USA Soil. David Headley is a USA Pawn/agent/USA Homegrown Terrorist and is not stupid knowing that his “Ultimate handlers and masters” are protecting him because the expert work by the Indian Intelligence agencies captured him without any USA assistance OR a little “False” assistance knowing that there man was going to be caught soon because they underestmated the expertise of the Indian Intelligence services. A question for all the intelligent readers of Opinion Express is this: “If you or I were David Headly would we not understand and realize that it is the USA that is waging war in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iraq against Muslims and Islam NOT INDIA? So why would this smarter than the average person (because he planned and photographed all the targets in Mumbai) commit a terrorist act in India and NOT the USA???? Even his links (Suspected) to the Pakistani terror group/groups would have advised him/brain washed him to hit USA Targets as he could fly in and out of the USA without any suspicions!!
The Indian Government and authorities should push 100% in bringing David Headley back to India immediately to face charges and be given the justice he truly deserves…and we all know without any shadow of a doubt what that ultimate justice should be. INDIAHAS TO SHOW THE “WHOLEWORLD” THAT it does not tolerate interference and it will never quietly sit by listening to feeble stories and excuses. INDIA IS BRAVE, STRONG, WISE AND INTELLIGENT ENOUGH IN THE 21ST CENTURY TO HANDLE IT’S OWN LEGAL SYSTEMS AND TO SHOW THE INDIAN PUBLIC WHY INDIA IS LAW ABIDDING IN MATTERS OF EQUAL JUSTICE EVEN IF YOU ARE A FOREIGNER!
A Quote “Divide and rule, a sound motto. Unite and lead, a better one” Author: Johann Wolgang Von Goerthe. India IS GOING TO Unite and Lead Peacefully AS WELL AS truthfully unlike many other countries in the World. “IF” India does NOT show it’s Peaceful Strength now on this matter of having David Headley back in India to face charges than it paints a very sad and weak picture of India to China and the rest of Asia that India cannot even bring back and convict a USA Homegrown Terrorist. This David Headley matter is India’s Reputation on the line in front of the whole world. India has to stand up to the USA with peaceful re- quest and without any hesitancy. CHINA WOULD NEVER EVER HAVE ALLOWED THIS SITUATION OF DAVID HEADLEY BEING GIVEN TO THE USA… NEVER!
(Writer is internationally known security expert based in North America. He can be contacted at jbirring@worldhomeland- security.com)