ANALYSIS: Drone strikes & Euro terror plot

A recent upturn in US drone attacks in Pakistan is directly linked to intelligence warning of impending Al Qaeda attacks in Europe.

US strikes in Pakistan have assassinated a series of foreign nationals in recent days, including five German nationals on Monday and a British citizen last month. The strikes have been linked to intelligence pointing to commando-style raids on targets in France, Germany, and Britain.

Foreign Policy has carried a piece outlining rogue elements within Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence:

“The “rogue” quote in Woodward’s book has been picked up by the Indian media because it fits with the narrative, popular among many in Pakistan’s bigger neighbor, that the Pakistan military in general and the ISI in particular have ceased being national institutions subordinate to legal or governmental control. Saikat Datta, writing this week in Outlook India, described the Pakistani terrorist organizations responsible for the Mumbai attacks as “a parallel state run with quiet and ruthless efficiency by the ISI.”

Thus, the logic goes that the ISI is either directly or indirectly supporting the training of militants in the tribal areas. The fact that a ‘Mumbai-style’ attack in France or Germany with a Pakistani connection would be disastrous for its image abroad is explained through the presence of ‘rogue’ elements within the ISI that are motivated by ideological rather than practical goals.

Just today, another five militants died in a drone attack in north-west Pakistan. According to the BBC, the United States has carried out 27 drone strikes in the tribal areas of Pakistan since September.

Zachary Fillingham is a contributor to

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