Tuesday, December 16, 2008
MICHAEL VICKERS - A VERY IMPORTANT MAN (1 of 3)
Vickers is a former GREEN BERET (elite US Special Ops) and he also holds MBA from Wharton School (Pennsylvania). He is not only brawns but comes with serious strategic brains.
Vickers was the principal strategist for covert CIA operations in Afghanistan that resulted in the defeat, and subsequent break up of the Soviet Union. If there is one man who can be credited for the break up of Soviet empire - it is Vickers.
His greatest influence was in the precise way he reassessed the potential of Afghan guerrilla forces and prescribed the right mix of weaponry to attack Soviet weaknesses. (According to me, he is simply an asset of platinum class for any country to have - period.)
At the height of Afghan operation, he was giving strategic and operational direction to 300 unit commanders, 150,000 full time and 500,000 part time fighters ("mujahideens"). He co-ordinated the efforts of TEN countries and oversaw an annual budget of US $ 2 billion.
From 1973 to 1986, Mr. Vickers served as an Army Special Forces Non-Commissioned Officer, Special Forces Officer, and CIA Operations Officer. During this period, Mr. Vickers had operational and combat experience in Central America and the Caribbean, the Middle East, and Central and South Asia. His operational experience spans covert action and espionage, unconventional warfare, counterterrorism (including hostage rescue operations), counterinsurgency, and foreign internal defense.
Michael G. (“Mike”) Vickers was confirmed by the U.S. Senate as the Assistant Secretary of Defense (Special Operations/Low-Intensity Conflict & Interdependent Capabilities) on July 23, 2007. He is the senior civilian advisor to the Secretary and Deputy Secretary of Defense on the capabilities and operational employment of special operations forces, strategic forces, and conventional forces. He is also the senior civilian advisor on counterterrorism strategy, irregular warfare, and force transformation.
Special Operations Command (SOCOM) which is part of the portfolio that Vickers handles is based in Tampa, FL. It's annual budget is US$ 8 BILLION and more than 60,000 covert and overt personnel are on its payroll. Vickers also sits on 3rd floor of Pentagon "C" Ring.
WHY AM I WRITING ABOUT HIM HERE?
Mr. Vickers is the co-author of The Quadrennial Defense Review and U.S. Defense Policy, 2006-2025 (QDR) in which he states Pakistan and terrorism is the near term threat to USA. The longer term threat to US are CHINA, INDIA and RUSSIA. (INDIA - a serious economic threat to US, specially after the economic meltdown)
Hence, in the immediate term, Vicker's attention will be on PAKISTAN & AFGHANISTAN - an area he knows well. After all he created many of the mujahideen cells and was its paymaster. All the major Taliban leaders, who fought the Afghan jehad against the Soviets, have deep respect for Vickers and all of them are on "FIRST NAME" basis with him.
He controlled them (ex- Mujahids and today's TALIBAN etc) at one time - hence the question is - how does he "control them" today?
This will have a bearing on "incidents" in India to drive the goal which Vickers has in mind. With a budget of US$ 8 billion and 60,000 assets (most top of the line special ops), it is in India's interest to embed its interests with Vickers.
Terrorism in and from Pakistan / Afghanistan has many masters and many loyalties. How Vicker's plays his cards will have a serious bearing in the geo-political situation in Central Asia and India and Pakistan in particular.
"I am just as confident or more confident we can prevail in the war on terror," said Vickers.
To get an insight into Michael Vickers - read this transcript from Military Strategies for Unconventional Warfare.
Here Vickers states : "Again, Pakistan is a critical ally in the war on terror, but life’s not perfect. But again, what’s the alternative—invade the Northwest Frontier Provinces? Good luck. You know—and so there’s a—you know, there’s a time and place."
(My question - Is this time and place NOW?)
We all know of Charlie Wilson's war. Well, Washington Post calls it "Sorry Charlie, this is Michael Vicker's war."
If I wish to achieve something, do I do it directly or do I make events happen to reach that desired objective and remain far away hidden from the events?
Let us assume that X wants to tap into Central Asian gas reserves and Pakistan is NOT proving to be an IDEAL AND A PLIANT PARTNER for that. President Musharraf played ball for most part but proved deceitful in handling terrorism. A little terrorism towards India was "par for course" but global jehad to hurt interest of X was not on. To clip the wings of Musharraf, Benazir Bhutto was brought in to keep Mushrraf in check. As soon as Benazir arrived in Pakistan, X got in touch with ex-contacts who hated Benazir and had her killed (gun shots as in a commando for VVIP killing) in a clinical fashion (these contacts were jehadi contacts - who then outsourced this killing down the line)
Revise back to the motive: Mr X wanted an "ideal and pliant partner" in Pakistan.
Benazir would never have been that ideal and pliant partner too. But a dead Benazir and now we are talking. A dead Benazir complicated the situation for President Musharraf. Musharraf was cunning and a "good man for Pakistan" but no match for machinations of "X". Hence, Musharraf, after coercive tackles, gave in and paved the way for President Zardari & PM Gilani. And boy, "X" could not have asked for a more "pliant" partner(s).
We may say that ISI killed Benazir, the Al Qaeda killed Benazir, Hamid Gul had Benazir killed - all / some may be true. But then who gave the orders and where did the money come for this? Ah, we reach our elusive "X".
In Mumbai (26/11): The role of LeT, ISI and Pakistan Army is unfolding. And yes, they were involved, without a doubt. They were the foot soldiers, facilitators and HAPPILY carried out this assignment. But where was this planned and for what purpose? I had surmised, that this was to bring in GREATER PAKISTAN, to cut India deeper - but can it be the whole truth? I do not think so.
Imagine if "X" wanted India to attack Pakistan for a limited war - so that Pakistan Army would vacate the Afghan border and come to Indian border. This will be a nightmare scenario for the British / US / ISAF forces as this will lead to choking of supply lines leaving these forces with just 2 weeks of rations and fuels. However, this might be precisely what X wants. With India not playing ball - not mobilizing its Army and threatening Pakistan Army - maybe this is not going the way X planned it. Now what?
I leave the analysis and brain storming to the readers / viewers.
Initial mission accomplished Mr X. Or is it just the begining?
To - Michael Vickers: I know you will be reading this post. You hate to come to the limelight and I was just doing my duty. I have no information that will "cause you harm" hence I hope I too will come to "no harm."