World View: Pakistan 'Peace Process' Collapses on First Day

World View: Pakistan 'Peace Process' Collapses on First Day

This morning’s key headlines from

  • Pakistan ‘peace process’ collapses on first day
  • Corruption in Europe matches corruption in Washington

Pakistan ‘peace process’ collapses on first day

Tuesday was to be a “historic day” for Pakistan, for this was the daythat Pakistan’s government would open peace talks with the PakistaniTaliban (Tehrik-e-Taliban – TTP) to end the endless bombings and otherterror attacks that the TTP perpetrates almost daily.

The talks were to begin on Tuesday. The TTP representatives showed upfor the meeting, but the government representatives did not. Thegovernment issued a statement to the furious TTP representatives that it had to check something out about the negotiating teams.

The question of negotiating teams has been part of the joke leading upto Tuesday’s scheduled meeting. The TTP negotiators could not makeany binding decisions on behalf of the TTP, so the talks were just forshow from their side. However, even more laughable is the fact that theTTP asked Imran Khan to be one of the negotiators on the side of theTTP. Imran Khan is a former cricket superstar who has become avitriolically anti-American politician, whose participation as a TTPnegotiator would be totally inappropriate.

Even if the TTP leaders agreed to stop terrorist attacks, theirdecision would not be binding on other TTP-related terrorist groups inPakistan. Probably the worst is Lashkar-e-Janghvi (LeJ), which haspublicly and firmly announced as its goal the extermination of allShia Muslims in Pakistan and has been methodically setting off bombsin order to achieve that goal. As recently as January 21, LeJ blew up abus of Shia pilgrims returning from Iran, killing 24. LeJ is notgoing give up these attacks, even if the TTP makes some deal.

The volume of terrorist attacks in Pakistan is enormous. In Januaryalone, terrorism resulted in at least 460 fatalities, according to theSouth Asia Terrorism Portal (SATP). There have been at least 70explosions in January, resulting in 167 deaths. To think that thisflood of terrorist attacks will suddenly stop because of some “peacetalks” with the Taliban is absurd. Many Pakistanis agree. Oneeditorialist calls the peace talks “appeasement” and says, “Thepostponement of talks leads one to hope the prime minister has finallyrealized that the TTP is in fact playing tricks with the government.”Pakistan Today and South Asia Terrorism Portal (SATP – India) and BBC

Corruption in Europe matches corruption in Washington

A new “EU Anti-Corruption Report” from the European Commission paintsa very bleak picture. According to the report, Europeans believe thatthe only way to succeed is through political connections and thatcorruption is a big problem. A rising number believe that it’sgetting worse, especially in Greece, Spain, and Italy. According toone commentator in Brussels:

Europe’s problem is not so much with small bribes onthe whole. It’s with the ties between the political class andindustry.

There has been a failure to regulate politicians’ conflicts ofinterest in dealing with business. The rewards for favoringcompanies, in allocating contracts or making changes tolegislation, are positions in the private sector when they haveleft office rather than a bribe.

This may be what’s happening in Brussels, but it’s also what’shappening in Washington. It’s almost beyond belief that thousands of(Gen-X) bankers committed massive fraud in the 2003-8 time period,purposely creating trillions of dollars’ worth of synthetic securitiesbacked by faulty subprime mortgages, and then sold them to investorsknowing that they were fraudulent. NOT ONE SINGLE PERSON has goneto jail for those crimes. The Obama administration adamantly refusesto prosecute these criminals and criminal organizations, which,incidentally, donated millions of dollars to Obama’s campaigns. Then you have the administration dispensing Obamacare favors,exemptions, and dispensations to labor unions and other administrationcronies, while using the IRS to target political enemies, and you havethe worst corruption in my lifetime, and you have exactly what thisnew report says is happening in Europe. BBC and Reuters

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