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WASHINGTON – Pakistan’s army and intelligence service have created an umbrella terrorist entity that will allow the country’s generals to maintain control of Islamabad in spite of the civilian leadership, suggesting a further rift between the military and the civilian government led by President Asif Ali Zardari. , according to a report in Joseph Farah’s G2 Bulletin.

The name of the new umbrella group is the Difa-e-Pakistan Council, said to be under the control of the army and Pakistan’s Inter-Service Intelligence Directorate.

The Difa-e-Pakistan Council, or DPC, is an umbrella coalition of some 40 Pakistani religious and political parties whose purpose is to cut off the routes through the Khyber Pass that are used to supply U.S. and coalition forces in neighboring Afghanistan.

For months, the group has been successful in halting the flow of supplies, forcing the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to re-route vital supplies through the Northern Distribution Network which the Russians and now the government of Uzbekistan similarly have threatened to block for different political reasons.

Sources say that Pakistan’s efforts to create the DPC suggest that it is preparing for the departure of NATO forces from Afghanistan at the end of 2014. Pakistan then will be able to focus its attention once again on exerting its influence in Afghanistan and to head off any similar efforts by its arch-enemy, India. The departure of coalition troops also will give the Pakistani army a free hand once again to refocus its efforts against India.

Regional sources say that the DPC, while comprised of many groups, is a major front organization for the more prominent terrorist entities of Jamaat-ud-Dawa, or JuD, and the Lashkar-e-Taiba, or LeT. The JuD is the political arm of the LeT, which is responsible for numerous acts of terrorism, including the November 2008 terrorist attack in Mumbai, India, where 168 people were killed.

Following the Mumbai attack, investigators found a list of some 320 locations worldwide that the LeT planned to attack, according to informed sources who also say that the LeT similarly is the creation of the ISI. This international outreach by the LeT concerns U.S. counter-terrorism specialists. In the list that investigators uncovered after the Mumbai attack by the LeT, some 20 other locations, mostly in India were identified, slated for future attacks.

The Pakistani Army and ISI regard India as their primary enemy and created the terrorist entities to act as their proxies to give the army deniability following the attacks, particularly in India.

Since a major rupture in relations between Washington and Islamabad has developed in recent months, the Pakistani government apparently believes it no longer is bound by U.S. constraints and now can work more directly with terrorist groups that have attacked U.S. and coalition forces.

Relations between Washington and Islamabad never have been stable. But the discovery and killing of Osama bin Laden in Pakistan last May without informing Pakistani officials and then the subsequent accidental killing by U.S. Special Forces of some 24 Pakistani soldiers on the border of Afghanistan and Pakistan resulted in a virtual breakdown in any cooperation between the two governments. The strained relations continue.

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