03 March 2010

Who's Who the Terrorist Edition: Hafiz Muhammad Saeed

Hafiz Muhammad Saeed
Occupation: Leader of Lashkar-e-Taiba
Born: 1950
Education: Islamic Studies in both Pakistan and Saudi Arabia
Employer: Depends on who you ask, Pakistan will say self employed, India will claim the ISI has Saeed on the books. He is also professor in the Islamic Studies Department of Engineering at the University of Lahore
Career Highlights: While a student in Lahore, his Islamic scholars sent him to Saudi Arabia to further his education. He met several key financiers of the Mujahideen in Afghanistan and heeded their calling to follow the Wahabbi teachings. In 1987, he established the Jumaat-ud-Dawa, which is what he will admit to currently leading, and funnels money from Saudi Arabia to his military arm, Lashkar-e-Taiba. Lashkar-e-Taiba was formed in 1990. The most high profile attacks include; Oct 29, 2005, New Delhi bombings, Aug 25, 2003, Bombay dual car bombing, November 26, 2008, Mumbai attacks, and a complete roll up of LeT incidents.
Family: Married his maternal uncle's daughter, his father relocated to Manwali after 36 members of his family were murdered in 1947 along the border of India.
Address: Manwali district of Punjab Pakistan.
Assessment Summary: A recent Washington Post article states, there might be a connection between LeT and the most recent suicide attack in Kabul. Several Indians were killed during the attack, which is why initial reports focus on LeT's involvement. MG Flynn states that LeT may be sending fighters to Afghanistan to gain combat experience. Undoubtedly, we will pressure Pakistan to rein in LeT, as we did post 9/11. The Pakistani government detained Hafiz but their courts decided to release him in 2009. Since Hafiz is not in the FATA or NWFP area, I do not anticipate any kinetic strike. Most likely we will pursue another attempt at getting the Pakistani government to arrest Hafiz, an option that may someday actually happen like the capture of Baradar. Until that day, expect LeT to continue to conduct terrorist attacks against India.

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