September 11 Digital Archive: XML Document
Title:What General Musharraf and his government will not reveal about FBI surveillance in Pakistan
Author:Sufi Z. H Aziz
Blurb:General Musharraf and his aides deny it, but it seems that the FBI is placing state-of-the-art surveillance cameras in airports, malls and other public places in Pakistan.
Body:The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is placing state-of-the-art surveillance cameras in Pakistan, many of which will be put in Karachi, at the airport, hotels, malls and intersections of major streets.
Pakistani officials routinely dismiss questions about surveillance cameras as they do al questions regarding FBI activity in Pakistan. Recently, General Musharraf, at an armament trade show in Karachi named IDEA 2002, commented that it was mere rumor that the FBI was active in Pakistan against Al Qaeda. He said that all operations against Al Qaeda were the work of Pakistani intelligence agencies. General Musharraf's statement is in keeping with his government's denial that there are American bases in Waziristan, Pakistan or that there are any FBI or Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) operations in the country.
In reality there is an American military base in Waziristan, and the FBI does have operational centers in Pakistan. At the airports in Islamabad, Lahore and Karachi, newly installed surveillance cameras link the PISCES (Pipeline Intermodal System to Support, Control Expedition and Scheduling) system to the FBI database.
When Inspector General of Police Syed Kamal Shah was asked about the cameras that have been set up in Karachi he argued that the police had set them up to record traffic violations! However, the cameras are very obviously several generations of technology ahead of anything that the police in Karachi use. The answer that stares us in the face is that the FBI is conducting its own surveillance.
It is no wonder that right wing clerical parties did so well in the Pakistani elections, after running a campaign critical of American and Musharrafs policies. Obviously greater and greater numbers of Pakistani are tired of Musharraf's policies of self preservation. The Musharraf government was pro-Taliban and pro-jihad in Kashmir until after September 11th, when American pressured it into a 180 degree turn. Currently the government is allowing American armed forces and intelligence agencies leeway in Pakistan.
Musharraf's policies have so little to do with the Pakistani public's sentiments that they are not even made public.