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NCJ Number: 220899 Find in a Library
Title: ISI and the War on Terrorism
Journal: Studies in Conflict & Terrorism  Volume:30  Issue:12  Dated:December 2007  Pages:1013-1031
Author(s): Shaun Gregory
Date Published: December 2007
Page Count: 19
Type: Historical Overview; Issue Overview
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article reviews the history of Pakistan's Directorate of Inter-Service Intelligence (ISI), including its objectives in the war on terrorism in the post-9/11 era.
Abstract: The ISI was established in 1948 in the new state of Pakistan as part of the Pakistan Army, in order to supplement the existing military intelligence in addressing the lack of interservice intelligence cooperation. Eventually, the ISI evolved into an intelligence agency focused on countering political organizations and individuals perceived as posing a threat to the power of the military or pro-military elites within Pakistan. It was instrumental in countering Bengali Muslim Nationalism by using political gerrymandering, the surveillance and intimidation of political opponents, and political assassination. Similar tactics were used in efforts to destabilize India. The Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in December 1979 transformed the ISI, as it was used by the CIA as the instrument of support for the Afghan rebels. The ISI controlled almost all aspects of how the guerrilla war was fought and supported. After the Soviet Army left Afghanistan, the ISI was instrumental in supporting the Taliban and al Qaeda. After 9/11, however, Pakistan became a necessary but unpredictable partner in providing a base for the overthrow of the Taliban after it refused to cooperate in the destruction of the al Qaeda leadership in Afghanistan. Still, the ISI maintains its support for Sunni Islamism in Pakistan and its repression of political alternatives. There is evidence that it has provided a sanctuary in Pakistan from which al Qaeda has been able to regenerate. Western trust of the ISI is waning, requiring that the West rethink its intelligence strategy toward Pakistan in the war on terrorism. 103 notes
Main Term(s): Criminology
Index Term(s): Counter-terrorism intelligence; Foreign organizations; Intelligence units; Pakistan
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