Intelligence wars: ISI vs CIA

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During a one-on-one meeting with his Pakistani counterpart Ashfaq Parvez Kayani during a meeting of NATO military chiefs in Seville on September 16, Mike Mullen, Chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff accused the Inter-Services-Intelligence (ISI) of helping Jalaluddin Haqqani, the former head of the anti-Soviet resistance movement, to carry out attacks against U.S. forces in Afghanistan.

According to an attendee at the meeting who is involved in the deployment of the small Gulf contingent in Afghanistan, the encounter was particularly lengthy and acrimonious but led to nothing concrete. Despite a meeting in Washington on September 20 between the head of the ISI, Shuja Pasha, and CIA chief David Petraeus, the attacks have continued unabated. On September 25, insurgents attacked the heavily guarded CIA compound in the Hotel Ariana in Kabul, killing an American contractor and injuring another person.

By providing support to Haqqani’s troops, the most radical fringe of the ISI means to avenge the affront that Pakistan suffered when Osama Ben Laden was eliminated by U.S. Special Forces in Abbottabad in May.