Pakistan’s top spy agencies incompetent, out of control: Report

February 11th, 2011 - 6:17 pm ICT by ANI  

Lahore, Feb 11(ANI): Pakistan’s top intelligence agencies seem to be out of control and “often cross the lines”, a former top intelligence official has said.

While there are numerous small intelligence and investigating agencies in Pakistan, like Rangers Intelligence, Air Force Intelligence, Naval Intelligence, Special Branch, CID and the FIA, the big three- Inter Services Intelligence (ISI), Military Intelligence (MI) and Intelligence Bureau (IB)- are at the forefront as far as “intel operations” are concerned in Pakistan and abroad.

The ISI in principle looks after the foreign threats, the MI looks after the military related affairs and the IB looks after the internal affairs, but these three intelligence agencies seems to be out of control and “often cross the lines and even step on each other’s toes”, a former top intelligence official confirmed to Daily Times.

In fact, according to Brigadier (r) Shaukat Qadir, former vice president and founder of the Islamabad Policy Research Institute (IPRI), “the ISI, at least under Gen Mehmood in 2000-2001, completely went out of control until he was sacked. It was more of an ego problem, where Gen Mehmood, the ISI director general, considered himself unaccountable.”

The politicisation of the intelligence agencies can be judged with the fact that at least 4,000-5,000 sacked Intelligence Bureau officials, who were previously profiled to be “unfit for service” due to political connections, were reinstated by the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP)-led federal government with back pays and benefits only recently.

Revealing the work process of Pakistan’s intelligence agencies, the report said: “They send out a daily report to the president and the prime minister via COAS- titled ‘eyes only’- mostly “googled stuff” and constantly play up threat levels apart from nagging for more funds.”

While the three big intelligence agencies have received all the latest tech and surveillance equipment from the United States, including serious investments in a new field- quantum computing to break terrorist codes- it is the human intelligence on which Pakistan’s intelligence agencies normally rely upon but lack training in, the report added.

“They work like sub-inspectors and mostly tap phones and chase people,” confirmed a former intelligence operative.

The report said the incompetence of Pakistan’s intelligence agencies could be judged from the fact that they have completely failed to stop or pre-empt at least 87 per cent of terrorist related crimes, despite millions of dollars of funding and investment by the GoP and other allies in the country’s intelligence network.

“We need an effective and efficient institution for collection of data, assets and monitoring of activities of all national, defence and domestic intelligence organisations - right now it’s not working out well for us,” confirmed a top intelligence chief. (ANI)

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