Baitullah Mehsud: A Profile

Posted on August 7, 2009
Filed Under >Adil Najam, Law & Justice, People
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Adil Najam

Although not yet confirmed, all indications suggest that it is more likely than not that Baitullah Mehsud – the leader of the Taliban in Pakistan – has been killed.

The obvious question being asked right now is: Is he really dead?

The more important question that should also be asked, one this is confirmed, is: If he is dead, then what?

Baitullah Mahsud had become the visible (without really being visible) name to identify with the Taliban’s war on Pakistan. Even if deaths that he and his organization claim (proudly) to have been responsible for are counted, he has been responsible for killing more Pakistanis (nearly all Pakistani Muslims) than just about any other enemy of Pakistan in recent years.

But that does not mean that his departure alone would bring an end to the Taliban war on Pakistan.

Who will rise next? Do we know what the next level of the chain of command is? Do we know where? Do we have a strategy to deal with them before they, too, become larger than life?

All these, and many more, questions remain.

Also, there are questions about the US drone attacks. If, indeed, he was killed in a US drone attack, does that change Pakistanis’ views on the drone attacks? And, if it turns out that he has, in fact, not been killed, how does that change the US-Pakistan politics of drones?

Many questions deserving of answers. Any thoughts, dear readers?

By way of background, here is a profile of Baitullah Mehsud, from Dawn:

Born in 1972, Baitullah Mehsud had to suffer an early childhood dislocation when he moved, along with his father, from his Nargosha village to Landi Dhok in Bannu, close to the South Waziristan tribal region. His father served as a Pesh-Imam (prayer leader) in a mosque in Landi Dhok before moving to Miramshah in North Waziristan and there also he led prayers in a mosque. Baitullah got a little religious education in Miramshah’s Pepal Madressah.

And it was in Miramshah where Baitullah is believed to have come into contact with Taliban militants who persuaded him to join them in the fight against the Northern Alliance in Afghanistan. He fought well in Afghanistan and established himself as a fighter, a senior security officer, who himself belongs to the Mehsud tribe, recalled.

Baitullah returned to his native South Waziristan after the United States invaded Afghanistan and toppled the Taliban regime in November 2001. He shot to prominence after the notorious Taliban commander in South Waziristan, Nek Mohammad, was killed in a missile attack in Wana in June 2004. But he kept a low profile when the one-legged former Guantanamo detainee, Abdullah Mehsud, reined supreme in the Mehsud territory. His real chance to claim leadership came soon after Abdullah kidnapped two Chinese engineers in October 2004. Miffed that the fiery militant commander had picked up an unnecessary fight with Pakistan’s security forces, a shura of the local Taliban removed Abdullah Mehsud and handed over the command of the Taliban in South Waziristan to Baitullah.

Known for his cool-headedness, the military hailed Baitullah’s ascension, called him a soldier of peace and signed the Sara Rogha agreement with him in February 2005. The peace agreement collapsed in a matter of months, with both sides accusing each other of violating its terms, leading to the beginning of hostilities that took a huge toll. Baitullah proved himself a tough warrior, taking due advantage of a territory that was native and treacherous, by defeating two successive military operations.

He catapulted to the limelight when he took hundreds of Pakistani soldiers hostage in August 2007. It was perhaps because of this singular feat that militants in the length and breadth of Fata at a 20-member shura meeting chose him as leader of the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan in December 2007. Baitullah unleashed a wave of suicide bombings in Pakistan. Army Chief Gen Ashfaq Parvez Kayani once told journalists that the TTP leader was behind almost all attacks inside Pakistan. According to a UN report, Baitullah was behind 80 per cent of the suicide bombings in Afghanistan.

He gained in stature to the extent that Time magazine rated him as one of the 100 most influential people in the world. Not to be left behind, Newsweek described him as more dangerous than Osama bin Laden. Accounts vary about the actual strength of his force, but intelligence agencies put the number of his fighting force at 20,000 to 30,000, including 2,000 to 3,000 foreign militants, mostly of Central Asian origin – Uzbeks and Chechens. He ran a number of training camps, including those indoctrinating suicide bombers – a weapon – he once called his own atom bombs.

A short-stocky man, Baitullah suffered from diabetes that once prompted reports of serious illness and then death in late 2008. Much to the disappointment of many, the man bounced back to host a big feast of lamb and rice to celebrate his second marriage to a daughter of the local influential tribal leader, Malik Ikramuddin. He, however, remained issueless. According to one account, he was also the ghost writer of a book in Urdu, Carvan-i-Baitullah Mehsud, using the pen-name of Abu Munib. In the book, he described his ideology, war strategy and details pertaining to his movement.  The United States had announced a $5 million bounty on Baitullah’s head in March this year. But it took Pakistan several months before making up its mind to declare him as Pakistan’s enemy number one and announce a reward of Rs50 million for his capture, dead or alive, in June.

Trouble began to emerge for the TTP leader when the government announced the launching of a military operation against him in June. No ground offensive was launched and the government changed its tactics to use air strikes and artillery, besides imposing an effective economic blockade to stop fuel and food supply to the area. Thousands of Mehsuds fled the area. He was under pressure both from within his own Mehsud clan, which wanted him to ease it off with the government, and his commanders who egged him on to fight off the military. For the first time, his decision and thought-making process was shaky, an official familiar with the situation in the area said.

He wouldn’t stay in one place for two months and would constantly change places. His nerves were on edge, he remarked. It is useless to run away. I know some day, one day they will come and get me, one senior official quoted Baitullah as telling a fellow Mehsud tribesman. Little did the man, described by a senior security official as someone with fox-like instincts to sense danger, suspect that he was exposing himself to a missile target by relaxing with his younger wife on a roof in Zanghara, South Waziristan.

53 Comments on “Baitullah Mehsud: A Profile”

  1. tazi says:
    August 7th, 2009 11:25 am

    whether he is dead or not, TTP continues to exist and continues to pose a threat to Pakistan. His death will be insignificant, another leader will take his place, simple as that.
    The problem will only get resolved when Americans get out of Afghanistan

  2. farrukh says:
    August 7th, 2009 11:37 am

    His death is significant, and I agree that it will not change much on the ground. But nor will the US leaving Afghanistan. His war had nothing to do with Afghanistan. These Taliban are simply waging war against pakistan and using US as an excuse. Their hatred is for Pakistan that they wish to change to their barbaric ways. So, for them this IS a war on Pakistan and the US and Afghanistan is just an excuse.

  3. Nostalgic says:
    August 7th, 2009 11:42 am

    Another leader may take his place, but few of these terrorist honchos had cultivated the aura he had, so his death is by no means insignificant…

    Besides, he is responsible for the death of countless innocents, so it is well worth celebrating… so today, lets celebrate… tomorrow can wait until, well, tomorrow…

  4. Musaafir says:
    August 7th, 2009 11:46 am

    Good riddance to bad rubbish!

    As for my thoughts? May he, his sponsors, his mercenaries and others who slaughter humanity, rot in the deepest depths of hell.

  5. Raheel says:
    August 7th, 2009 11:54 am

    Can the death of Bait wipe all the blood and tears shed upon the earth? Is this an end to brutal activities?
    No! Already, a Pakistani News Channel has shown the queue of next top leader. As per them, there are three choices at the moment.

    Here, we need to ponder, who are Taliban? What are Taliban’s aims? How did they become so strong to challenge the sovereignty of our homeland? And most important, didn’t anyone know where Mehsud was till 5th of August when they killed him in a drone attack? Drone attacks have ALWAYS been committed upon information of Pakistani Agencies.

    I wish, Mehsud was captured and trialed in Supreme Court in front of whole nation and he should have been punished publically. Alas! We are unable to set examples.

    It’s not just about Americans in Afghanistan; it

  6. August 7th, 2009 12:21 pm

    the question which is very crucial here to ask is ” Why Pakistani military with its on-going operation in tribal areas was unable to capture / target Baitullah Mehsud? ” one of the common perception of the local population where this military operation is underway is ” military is not targeting the militant leaders’ hideouts” – I wonder if our defence policymakers/ strategists/ politicians still consider these militant leaders / groups as ” strategic assets”?

  7. Meengla says:
    August 7th, 2009 12:35 pm

    1-This news could NOT be bad for anyone except for the ‘militants’ fighting in the north of Pakistan.
    2-There is already an expat-kid-infested Pakistani forum where the bloggers are saying that Mehsud was a CIA Agent and CIA took him out because Pakistani Army was closing-in on Mehsud. What a bunch of wise-guys these kids.
    3-Taliban’s back had been broken in Swat. That was followed by ‘softening up’ of their positions by relentless drone-attacks and by the artillery/air-assaults from the Pakistani military in Waziristan. Now the ground is clearer to insert the troops and eliminate the massive Mehsud-led forces.
    4) Let there be no more making heroes of these villains by the Pakistani media the way they did for the Lal Masjid goons during the assault on that Masjid by Pakistani commandoes.
    5) I feel no joy in killing of any–not even of Mehsud. However, that was needed to be done considering so much appeasements and reconciliation efforts have been made since as early as 2004.

  8. Aamir Ali says:
    August 7th, 2009 12:39 pm

    This is GREAT news. American technology married to Pakistani intelligence sure produces results !!

    Baitullah Mehsud will be replaced as leader, however noone will have the charisma, cold calculation and ruthlessness that Mehsud had. Hopefully the best days of TTP are behind them.

  9. faraz says:
    August 7th, 2009 1:11 pm

    What his friends like Hamid Gul, Imran Khan and Hamid Mir are saying. They will be sad because their dreams of creation of “land of the morons” is sheterring.

  10. Ali says:
    August 7th, 2009 1:23 pm

    @ Faraz

    Add to the list of morons PML-N as well.

  11. August 7th, 2009 1:35 pm

    Some comments from the ATP Facebook Page:

    - “NPR says theres no physical evidence but theres a reason to believe that hes dead. They are doing DNA Testing; wondering how?”
    - “hmmm thats the question verification against what and why didnt they nab him alive.”
    - “drama”
    - “plz stop embarrassing islam taliban. islam is quite sweet religion”
    - “plz stop all this drama”
    - “now the new man will come like baitullah bashir…..or baitullah majeed….than fir se wohi drama start aur musualmano ko black mail aur zaleeel kerna start….huh stop thiz rubbish operation!!”
    - “u can find a million people similar to this so called baitullah mehsood in tht tribal areas .. wake up Muslims..”
    - “aik hi bar saroon ko farik karo”
    - “yah i knw pahlay usama bin ladin ka drama ker ke musalmano ko zaleel kia fir baitulaaha masud ka drama agaya now koi new face aye ga fir us ko le ke musalmano ko pakrein ge”
    - “this operation is not rubbish, hundreds of our brave jawaans have given their lives to protect Pakistan from the monstrosity that is TTP!
    @Faran Khan,I suppose u have traveled to the tribal areas and met those million people who are similar to Mehsud????? what rubbish! Pakistan’s tribal areas have MILLIONS of PAKISTANIS who love their country and are fighting alongside the Pak army to eliminate the terrorists. Get your facts straight.”
    - ” i did”nt said ke ye operation rubbish ha i just said ye news bakwas ha ke baitullah mehsud is dead…..abi tak koi janta bi nahin ke baithullah mehsud mara bi ha ya nahin just aik perception di ha govt ne….”
    - “Graveyards in SWA are filled with many a indispensable men!”
    - “um s0o0o0oo00o00o00o0o0 happy dat hez dead!!!!
    finally he got wat he deserve !!!!!!:@:@:@:x”
    - “i hope and mein shukar keron ga ager wo mar gya ha….and i really salute to my pak army !!bcoz he iz doing a gr8 job… kam unko bht pahle ker dena chahye tha wo ye ab ker rahin han but fir bi i really appreciate pak army.”
    - “i agree i damn ageer wid hassan coz ek baat bataun ye kam siway pak army k aur koi kar b nae sakta tha coz jo b hain hm pakistani jaisey b hain per agar ek bar kisi cheez k against khary ho jayn tou dunia ki koi takat nae hai jo hmhy ruky us ko khatm karny se
    n um damn proud b a pakistani
    coz mery pakistan se xada pyari cheez koi nae hai is dunia main:):):):)”
    - “thanks for sharing and i think him being died is a gift to pakistan in month of Aug from U.S… :) as a double celebration…”
    - “Sab sy pehly Pakistan…….”
    - “u knw wat baituallah wx in his father in law house n i would hate 2 say it buh itx true k america ny us k father in law k ghar main mizail mara tha nt jux pakistan ki bhali k ley buh apni izat karny k ley
    n baitullah ki wives “2nd wife” she is dead n also baitullah
    n i heard romerz that mulana phaja is also in bad condition n wo marny k karib hai
    this is all wat i knew n i loved 2 share it wid u :):):):)
    n i hope nw there is no confusion rite bilal:):):):):”
    - “itx a perfect gift 4 pakistan n pakistaniz
    on dis 14 aug 4rm our pak army n i loved it
    n by da way itx alwayz ma pleasure 2 give pleasure 2 others:):):):):)”
    - “i dont think the above pic displayed is of Baitullah and that all sounds DRAMA.”
    - “yeah surely its a drama, an international game is in process in Pakistan, May Allah save our beloved Pakistan (Ameen)”
    - “this pic is not of baitullah mehsud. most ppl in waziristan belt have this look…its their hair style :p …..but baitullah is not a problem. another baitullah will b announced by their majlis e shoora soon.”
    - “and this problem cannot b solved by any operation . this is what i think. cuz TTP in waziristan is very strong. they have army of around 20,000 ppl.”
    - “bait ullah mehsooood taliban’s commander is dead their r no more taliban in swat etc operation rah e rast succeeded then who is creating terror now???who attckd the schooolzz in lower deer????”
    - “this is called insurgency. in which u dun have to get orders from upper hierarchy. ppl carry out actions on their own. like in iraq, afg”
    - “i dunt know wht we should hope”

  12. Adnan Siddiqi says:
    August 7th, 2009 2:09 pm

    It’s surely going to hurt a “cause”. Oops!

  13. Haroon says:
    August 7th, 2009 3:21 pm

    I think the first picture is an older one of him and the last one is a newer one.

    I think if he is really dead then it is good news for Pakistan because he has been killing more Pakistanis than anyone else and it will at least rattle these Taliban thugs.

    I also think that if he is killed then the US has at least something to show for the drones which have otherwise been totally useless till now.

  14. sager says:
    August 7th, 2009 4:02 pm

    I am glad this trash has been killed, may he burn is special hell created for Zalims like him. I wish we continue the bombimgs till they finally realize not to take on our Army.

    Long live Imran Khan by the way, he is not their supporter at all. He is against these terrorists just like most pakistanies are.

  15. Bangash says:
    August 7th, 2009 5:25 pm

    Glad to see Baitullah Mehsud the mastermind criminal is six feet under. He deserved it very much indeed.

    The mullah parties, Imran Khan, many in PML-N and especially the Taliban-lovers in Pakistan media like Mushtaq Minhas, Hamid Mir and Haroon Siddiqi will be in “maatam” tonight! Hooray.

  16. Nostalgic says:
    August 7th, 2009 5:43 pm

    By the way, the editorial in Dawn wonders if now is the time to begin the South Waziristan operation… the terrorists, while they may try to dismiss his death as inconsequential and claim that they are moving on under a new leader, will certainly be downcast and in disarray… on the other hand, after Swat, we are on a high… there may be practical and logistical reasons not to begin the operation just now, but his death makes a compelling case for striking while the iron is hot…

  17. Zak says:
    August 7th, 2009 8:31 pm

    What Now? Celebrate now

  18. Hamza says:
    August 7th, 2009 10:57 pm

    No one has really addressed the final question regarding drone attacks, yet that’s probably one of the most important questions to emerge from Baitullah Mehsud’s death.

    The Dawn Editorial this morning discussed this particular issue, noting that “the much-criticised drone strikes need to be reassessed in the light of recent events. Ever since the last months of the Bush presidency, the escalation of American drone strikes in Fata have been met with a firestorm of criticism in Pakistan. But, as the Mehsud case illustrates, healthy cooperation between the Americans and Pakistanis can actually benefit us in the fight against militancy.”

    I think the Dawn Editorial has hit the nail on the head here. If the drone attacks are targeted accurately, and with the hope that closer intelligence sharing between the United States and Pakistan will continue, the Pakistani security agencies could benefit from drone attacks, resulting in the weakening of terrorist networks in the tribal areas, and a broader improvement in the security situation across Pakistan.

    The Pakistani government, it seems, is caught in a difficult dilemna. As the Mehsud drone attack demonstrated, these drone attacks, while causing civilian causalties, are effective. With closer intelligence cooperation, they could severely weaken the Taliban. But the Pakistani media, and the broader sections of the middle class, are dead set against drone attacks, leaving them very unpopular. Should the government take a more open stand on the drone issues? Conversely, should they continue this policy of denying any cooperation in the drone attacks, while lending surreptitious support? It’s an open question and one worthy of further debate and discussion.

  19. Eidee Man says:
    August 7th, 2009 11:15 pm

    Definitely a positive development. It’s impossible to predict exactly what impact his death will have, but it’s hard to see how this would not be a huge psychological blow to his group. I think the military should move in and go for the kill, even if only to make an example of this particular Taliban faction. It seems like most of the tribes in these areas feel that they have been sandwiched between the two fighting sides and they need to be assured that the state will see the task through to completion, and will not leave the local population to once again fend for themselves against a brutal, ruthless enemy.

    Once a few more massive blows have been hit, negotiations with the non-militant groups can be pursued again, but this time from a position of strength.

  20. Salman Khan says:
    August 8th, 2009 12:38 am

    Baituallah the human butcher, should have been taken down long ago. Now is the time to teach them some more drone lessons.

  21. August 8th, 2009 2:39 am

    The still unconfirmed-beyond-doubt news about Baitullah Mehsud

  22. Rugger says:
    August 8th, 2009 2:42 am

    Mr. Adnan Siddiqui will be accepting condolence visits between Asr and Maghrib today….

    Please feel free to NOT show up …………………..

    but celebrate in your own quiet way by offering a prayer of Thanks to the Almighty…

  23. Shayan says:
    August 8th, 2009 4:24 am

    Since no one else has said this so far, I will: Three cheers for America! It finally did something right for Pakistan. And in a very big way!

  24. tazi says:
    August 8th, 2009 5:21 am

    @farrukh, you are grossly mistaken my friend with that simplistic view, if these people had nothing to do with the war in afghanistan and are enemies of pakistan just because they are enemies, then where were they before 2004?. Militancy in Pakistan has everything to do with the US occupation of Afghanistan and only their departure from this region will resolve it! You have to be blind not to see that.

  25. Meengla says:
    August 8th, 2009 8:17 am

    Of course the militancy has a lot to do with Afghanistan. But Afghanistan is another country and a rather large one. Why the hell these people not go there and fight the ‘occupiers’ then? Why use Pakistani soil as the main base to arm, regroup, and launch attacks on Nato? And is not American ‘occupation’ of Afghanistan linked in at least some way to the attacks on 9/11? Would you be satisfied if Americans leave and then another Taliban+Alqaida take over of Afghanistan happens and another 9/11 happens? Think of the consequences for Pakistan then. Think harder. Those damned nukes will be rendered to the status of firecrackers in the event of a furious American response. Iraq was a fairly vibrant country in 1979. Look at where it is now because of the wars since then.
    Let us give America a fig-leaf of an excuse to leave this area. I am confident that–at least under Obama–Americans are looking for an honorable way out of this region, notwithstanding the New Great Game conspiracy theories.
    I also think the militancy in nothern Pakistan acquired a new impetus after the Lal Masjid operation. And Lal Masjid, as well as the Swat take-over of the militants clearly show that at least a part of the ‘militants’ are for more than countering Nato–that part of the militants is about acquiring power.

  26. Adam Insaan says:
    August 8th, 2009 10:30 am

    …there is only One Judge,
    and Judgement

  27. August 8th, 2009 10:42 am

    More comments from the ATP Facebook Page:

    - “i think this is the new strategy of America, India & Israel… they are playing very big game with us… but still v hope for the best..”
    - “definately he is dead. The indian agent is dead now.”
    - “dont get fooled by all this stuff…..they hav to show some progress and try to show that this operation has achieved something…..someone tell me what was the intelligence agencies and isi doing while these terrorists entrenched themselves in our country so firmly ……and it was not done in a few days……..this must hav taken months and our intelligence was sleeping…….there is more to it than what we see or are told …we are in the middle fighting with the enemy on both sides…front…back ,and amidst us…..and the top government is enjoying holiday trips!!!”
    - “Great to learn about you guy’s.”
    - “It is phenomena … which is difficult to die unless the core issues are addressed !”
    - “i dont thinks he’s Dead Maybe its Also a Propegenda of TAliban and Baitullah Mashud ? Or Might be its Just a fake News by dere lOCaL Civilians bUh HOpe fOr da Best if he is Dead its a reaLly reALy Gr8 News fOe Pakistan bUh its bad news tOo… cOz da Other Commander who replace Baitullah Mashud gOna plan a DanGerous SUICIDE BOMBING ATTACKS. ALLAH BLESS PAKISTAN”
    - “this shud happen before bloody terrorists”
    - “I hope he stays dead.”
    - “good riddance!”
    - “looks like a villian straight out of Hollywood :)”
    - “iam so glad”
    - “pakistan ka allah hi hafiz .. hope pak can be one ov the gr8est power ov the world”
    - “Yeap, actually, v r not killing the root cause and interested to kill the out growths only. Killing one such would give out several more like him.”
    - “Go Secular – dump religion – restrict it to the mosques .. that would end 99% of problems in Pakistan”
    - “dear it will create 100% problems for Pakistan.democracy ka haal daaikh rahey ho secular ka is se bhi bura ho ga.”
    - “O God he dies again n again by them”
    - “what has democracy got to do with secularism ?? democracy empowers people and if religion is the state affair then that empowerment of people produce extremists and intolerance.. democracy and secularism go hand in hand”

  28. Nostalgic says:
    August 8th, 2009 10:57 am

    Well, Adam Insaan, certain deaths are exceptions to that rule… for instance, I walk around smiling every August 17… given how much blood BM has shed without batting an eyelid, I am confident that the Almighty will turn a blind eye to our celebrations of his death…

    Pop the (non-alcoholic) champagne bottles everyone!

  29. Adam Insaan says:
    August 8th, 2009 11:36 am

    -what I meant was ;
    I do find hands rising for the gesture of Salam more appealing in sight of eye and comfort for the heart
    than a hand rising with something blank glittering as the sun reflexes the sharp blitz of anger…..

  30. Bangash says:
    August 8th, 2009 2:22 pm

    The only connection that militancy in Pakistan has with US in Afghanistan is that before 9/11, Baitullah Mehsud and all these other characters were busy in Afghanistan fighting and killing Muslims. After 9/11 all these characters fled to Pakistan and after lying low for awhile, resumed their violent lifestyle. They are inspired by ideology and a thirst for money, women and power, not the US occupation of Afghanistan.

  31. August 8th, 2009 3:05 pm

    I am not surprised to hear that he’s alive. Why would USA would kill the person who is being helpful for them as well as India to damage Pakistan(further). Few years back I had heard the news that Pakistani intelligence told the location of Mehsud to US but they didn’t kill him. Same happened recently when so called “Militant killer” aka drones attacked a funeral ceremony in which every one got killed accept Mehsud.

    America gave a toffee and our liberal “intellectuals” started clapping like kids as if they achieved something on their own while they will never understand that they are always used by the the right wing of US who love to play them as toys. I would like to see the reactions of those who had headed to pubs after the news. Are they still over there(to kill the sadness?)

    And the question that whether drones are useful? it does not even worth to be called a Question. Even if Mehsud would have been killed then what about 1000+ men,women and kids who got killed due to 40+ drone attacks? Are they worthless just because they are not part of our families?

  32. zia hussain says:
    August 8th, 2009 4:02 pm

    It would have better if pak army had caught him alive. So we could prove that USA is backing him in some way. They killed him before pak army was going to get him, just like Zahid Hamid said US was going to do.

  33. August 8th, 2009 6:56 pm

    A detailed profile of Baitullah Mehsud has just been added to this post.

  34. Bangash says:
    August 8th, 2009 7:12 pm

    The latest posts by Zia Hussein and Adnan Siddiqi demonstrate that conspiracy theorists make it up as they go along! One claims that because US killed Baitullah, it proves he was their agent, while another claims that since US has not killed Baitullah it proves he is their agent!

    btw Adnan Siddiqi the latest news is that Hakeemullah Mehsud was killed in a shootout with rival commanders at the Taliban shura to choose a new leader. That means double tragedy for you !!

  35. Mohammad Jafri says:
    August 8th, 2009 9:19 pm

    Thanks for updating with profile.

    It gives us a glimpse into the mind of this evil evil person. I wish someone could update and calculate just how many Muslims he killed and had killed in the name of Islam.

    May he and all taliban rot in hell.

  36. Adnan Siddiqi says:
    August 9th, 2009 7:07 am

    @Bangash: I m neither Zaid Zaman nor Nadeem F Paracha hence not a conspiracy theorist. If you are not able to follow newspapers then it’s not my fault. Several times Rehman Malik claimed that he had proofs of linkage between Mehsud and India. Please check news archive. they are available on Internet

  37. zia hussain says:
    August 9th, 2009 9:21 am

    Why should we just belive in western media. Zahid Hamid gives us a another view of the story.

    And for those who are still hung up with Zaman(fraud)

  38. Gardezi says:
    August 9th, 2009 1:04 pm

    I think this has really hit the Taliban hard. Here is why: (1) you see their supporters scrambling hard to divert attention and distancing themselves from Baitullah, (2) the Taliban themselves are distracting attantion by saying he is alive but not being able to prove it, and (3) his successors are killing each other.

  39. Adnan Siddiqi says:
    August 9th, 2009 1:33 pm

    @Gardezi: you really gave me a laugh. As usual liberals ain’t willing to stay in their wonderland. Here are few links:

    Rehman Malik presents

  40. Bangash says:
    August 9th, 2009 1:56 pm

    @Adnan Siddiqi

    The topic is the death of Baitullah Mehsud, not Rehman Malik’s statements about India or US/UK deals in Afghanistan. Liberals are staying on topic, while mullahs are running all over the place.

    Are you willing to accept that Baitullah Mehsud is indeed dead and it is a good thing for Pakistan ?

  41. Zecchetti says:
    August 9th, 2009 5:36 pm

    Am I the only one who thinks the baitullah mehsud in the first picture looks like someone completely different the the guy with the long hair in the second picture? Look at the eyes: completely different!

    What’s going on?

  42. Bangash says:
    August 9th, 2009 5:47 pm


    I agree with you. The picture of the man standing in green jacket looks more to me like Hakimullah Mehsud. Hopefully he is also dead if the latest news about shootout at Taliban shura is to be believed

  43. ASAD says:
    August 9th, 2009 6:57 pm

    Very interesting report in THE NEWS. Worth Reading:
    bloody feud that followed Baitullah Mehsud

  44. ASAD says:
    August 9th, 2009 7:02 pm

    Wow, here is an even more interesting news report from THE NEWS:
    A desperate wish for a son may have led to the death of Pakistani Taliban leader Baitullah Mehsud, a British newspaper reported on Sunday.

    Mehsud was spending the night with his second wife in village Zangarha on Wednesday when he was killed in an American drone attack, the Sunday Times said. It said the 35-year-old Mehsud, who has four daughters by his first wife, took a second wife, the daughter of an influential cleric, last November.

    The paper said the diabetic Mehsud, who had been feeling

  45. Adnan Siddiqi says:
    August 10th, 2009 12:53 pm

    I am quite on topic. I gave the news reference which were relevant to Mehsud’s link with India and US. If you can’t grasp it then it’s not my fault. Pls do read the stuff before making a comment.

    Offcourse! Pakistan’s success solely depends on getting rid of fascist elements of both left and right elements. I hope the day will come when we will get rid of fascist secular elements like Musharraf,Altaf, Zardari and their “supporters”. But the question is..,is he Dead?

    I read a cutting that US is happy after “split” between Talibans. I don;t know why US is happy but for Pakistan it’s more dangerous as fight between different groups could create more problem in Pakistan. As Kamran Khan reports that Mehsud had lots of money which was funded by “external sources” which I mentioned above and other guys fought to grab the money and lots of weapons, this “internal” fight would be more dangerous for Pakistan

  46. faraz says:
    August 10th, 2009 8:04 pm

    This dead guy don’t look 35. He seems to be 45 at least. When this extremist is dead; his like minded are claiming that he was not their man. (LOL) No matter from where he was getting money; he was still a right wing extremist.

    Hamid Mir; Hamid Gul and Imran Khan will be in pain these days!

  47. Bangash says:
    March 5th, 2010 10:16 am

    Happy to revisit this page and note that Hakeemullah Mehsud is also six feet under, alongwith Qari Hussain, the “ustad-e-fedayeen”.

  48. Nadia says:
    March 5th, 2010 6:49 pm

    No one talks about his poor wife…perhaps her life has no value or a terrorist’s wife and children are terrorists too.. Who cares if few women and children are killed with terrorists in those drone attacks… not a big deal…after all they belong to a poor, illeterate tribal belt…Keep up the good work U.S! and by the way don’t you ever think attacking terorrists in a big modern Pakistani city because some precious holy ‘ellite’ lives can be lost too…DON’T YOU EVER DARE!!

  49. Pakistani says:
    March 5th, 2010 10:30 pm

    Yes, “Nadia”, lets talk about Baitullah’s wife.

    Actually, lets get together with the wife and kids of all the hundreds and thousands of innocent Muslims and Pakistanis that Baitullah killed or had killed and talk to them too.

    And since you seem to be a “family friend” of Baitullah and the Taliban, maybe you can tell us why you Taliban hate Muslims and Pakistanis so much that you keep killing them!

  50. Jamshed says:
    March 6th, 2010 3:16 am

    Baitullah,Hakimullah,someone new…the players are disposable,the deadly game continues.

  51. Nadia says:
    April 20th, 2010 12:03 am

    @ Pakistani,
    Calm down!! You don’t have the right to judge and label me or other peolpe only because you did not find my posts condemning the horrible and unhuman acts of Taliban and their allies.
    I only condemned the fact that we all have become so “used to” to these drone attacks that we really ignore the loss of innocent lives in the tribal area. How narrow minded you are in your thoughts that you assumed me a ‘family friend’ of Bait- ullah- Mehsood and Taliban (wow) just because I talked about his wife and other innocents being killed in that area who are as much Pakistanis as you and me are??!! Most of Pakistanis like me, condemn this insanity going on in our country on the name of religion and war of terrorism. This situation divided us as a nation more than ever, thatswhy people like you judge other people and take them as pro-taliban if we talk about the loss of those who are facing the violence by Taliban, security forces and the U.S, neglecting the fact that they are the one who are on the front line, they are the one who are sacrificing the most as compared to the rest of Pakistan. I raised my voice for them because somebody should remember their sacrifices when commenting on such articles. It made me feel that we are simply forgetting them. By the way isn’t it true that these drone attacks are for poor tribal belt only not for big cities because some ‘holy’ peolpe live there who rule this country. Will they not do something if U.S starts attacking Peshwar, Islamabad or Lahore? After all Pro-Taliban policies are made in Islamabad, Lal-masjid is situated in Islamabad, Lahore and southern Punjab are being used as base camps for Panjabi Taliban & Lashkar-e-taiba and Karachi is still the biggest financial source for Talibans and their allies. Do you ever think that what do those tribal area people feel about us when we only mourn for the loss of people being killed in bigger cities and not for them?

  52. Khanzada says:
    April 25th, 2010 11:34 pm

    The younger Bait-ullah looks entirely different than the older one specially the jaw line and the eyes. He is surely dead but we are still waiting for a ‘change’ yet. The new leader of TTP Hakim ullah Mehsood is more evil than the last one I think.. The bottom line is if we want to get rid of them then we have to concentrate on the causes of this evil itself plus the factors that nurture their ideology and fighting capibilities like illitracy, our foreign policies, our weak intelligence, weapon smuggling, loss of innocent lives in drone attacks, illegal financial netwroks which support them, madrassas that are spreading a false message of Islam and totally misguiding its students … Its just a short list, there is so much more to do…
    As I am writing these lines, suddenly I realise that will we or our government ever try to cut the roots rather than the breanches??

  53. Mark says:
    April 29th, 2010 2:55 am

    Does anyone know the name of the second wife of Baitullah Mehsud, daughter of Maulana Ikramuddin? It seems to me that, regardless of one’s sympathies, she deserves to be named.

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