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Chockstone Forum - General Discussion
General Climbing Discussion
|Terrorist attack at Nanga Parbat
Some more precise background on the attackers here:
On 26/06/2013 Wendy wrote:
>Thanks for standing up for polite conversation, Cliff.
>Paul, just because people depend on tourists for a living does not mean
>that governments and aid should not be provided to the people of the country
>first. Tourism in many areas of the world is fraught with problems and
>exploitation of locals who have no other options and that's a whole extra
>discussion. A lot of poor countries devote unbalanced resources to keeping
>visitors safe, because they want to create a good image, bring tourists
>to their country, etc etc. I think asking them to do so at the cost of
>their own people is questionable. Note the bit about Pakistan has been
>beset by militants for years - militants (and in some cases also militaries)
>who also attack and terrorise local people. And if you want to argue that
>resources should go here, because this was one of the "most peaceful regions
>of Pakistan" - well, that also seems like questionable allocation of limited
>resources. And none of this changes my original point - people are subject
>to these sorts of events all around the world, everyday, and it is often
>unmentioned until it is tourists who are attacked.
I don't think it comes as that much of a hypocritical surprise that western media is more attached to the tragedies of "western" people and activities.
On 27/06/2013 Cliff wrote:
>Tx Damo. The TTP's goals didn't appear to be included in the post. What's
>their raison d'etre?
I guess where it says "Organization's strategic goals are purely based on enmity toward the Pakistani government and military." means they would like to see the Pakistan government go down and a less secular, more fundamentalist, regime installed. The fundamentalist groups see the government as a servant of the US and therefore implicit in the deaths from drone strikes and similar activity. Obviously it's a lot more complicated than that.
All the players have different objectives but don't directly oppose each other as each player is used in a secondary capacity for other, often contradictory, purposes. The Pakistani ISI is still obsessed with India, so supports Islamic fundamentalists as a de facto tool against India in Kashmir. That those same fighters come and go from Afghanistan and are part of the forces fought by the US, ostensibly the ally of the Pakistan government, who are supposed to oversee the ISI, is just one part of the problem, for example. Everybody's objectives mesh, but do not align.
There is also a growing element of Chinese influence, coming in from the north via the KKH road works, with a rail line planned to link NW Chinese resources with sea access. What the Soviets wanted in 1979, but now done via money, not tanks. There is resentment against that Chinese presence, with knowledge of Chinese repression of Muslim Uighurs just over the border in Xinjiang. That Chinese were murdered in this attack will not go unnoticed in Beijing.http://www.smh.com.au/world/ethnic-clashes-in-chinas-northwest-leave-27-dead-20130627-2oynf.html
I'm sad about it all, of course, but that's nothing to the grief of the victims' loved ones and the hardship more locals will now face. They've had impacts from 9/11, the Attabad Lake landslide/cutoff and then catastrophic floods, with a giant earthquake in there as well. The place is screwed, yet they must carry on.
What remained of adventure tourism after all that stuff was one of the final threads they had left to the outside world - politically, economically and socially. TTP know that too. One of the reasons any Taliban/TTP/Al Qaida type groups never took hold in the Baltoro/Hispar regions is that the locals would not allow it, as they valued the foreign tourism. You could say the nearby Siachen/Line-Of-Control army presence helped, but they are also targets, so that is a mixed blessing.
I wonder if any other Basecamps are at threat? I would have thought the Karakorum giants would still be safe due to the long approaches and the expeditions all departing from such a military stronghold in the town of Skardu. Nanga Parbat sits at the end of the Himalayas and would have been a soft target.
I hope the rest of the mountaineering world is not scared away from the Karakorum but I reckon they will be, such a pity to see the area and locals suffer yet again. Can't see many risking travelling the KKH and the road between Skardu and the KKH, most will opt for challenges in Nepal, Tibet and India.
(By the way did anyone read the readers comment on that link posted - Many in the US are just so ignorant).
One of the teams heading for the 'G's that was shunted back to ISB has now flown to Skardu ..apparently with an increased military/police presence.
Will be interesting to see what happens in the future. Maybe less of a web presence advertising team locations and for the braver souls, skipping NP and concentrating on the mountains around Concordia.
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