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Generational Dynamics Web Log for 11-Feb-2014
11-Feb-14 World View -- Pakistan asked to send 30,000 troops to Saudi Arabia

Web Log - February, 2014

11-Feb-14 World View -- Pakistan asked to send 30,000 troops to Saudi Arabia

Korea's demilitarized zone (DMZ) guarded by Microsoft Kinect game software

This morning's key headlines from GenerationalDynamics.com

Korea's demilitarized zone (DMZ) guarded by Microsoft Kinect game software


Playing volleyball using Microsoft's Kinect motion-sensing technology
Playing volleyball using Microsoft's Kinect motion-sensing technology

South Korea's military is using Kinect, the motion-sensing software that Microsoft uses in its X-Box game controllers, to guard the 155-mile long demilitarized zone (DMZ) separating South and North Korea. The DMZ was established in 1954 as part of the armistice that ended the Korean war. It's called a "no-man's land," because it's heavily fortified with fences and landmines.

The Kinect technology was originally developed for Microsoft by Ko Jae-Kwan of Saewan Co., and the South Korean military is using it because it's better than any of the sensors they had previously been using. According to Ko:

"Existing sensors, which had been in place along the border, were highly efficient but could not tell the difference between humans and animals, sending wrong signals frequently."

The South Korean military has been embarrassed in the past by highly publicized incidents of undetected border crossings, including the case in 2012 when a defecting North Korean soldier simply walked undetected across the border and knocked on the door of a guard post. AFP

Pakistan asked to send 30,000 troops to Saudi Arabia

Reports out of Pakistan indicate that Saudi Arabia has asked Pakistan to dispatch 30,000 troops to the Kingdom as part of a bilateral defense agreement that's currently being formulated in a flurry of visits and meetings between defense and military officials from the two countries. Pakistan's prime minister Nawaz Sharif said:

"In view of current challenges, there is a need to further strengthen defense cooperation between the two countries and a new era of strategic relationship needs to start."

The particular "current challenges" facing Saudi Arabia and Pakistan are the rise of Iran, and Iran's rapprochement with the United States. Both countries fear that Iran will develop nuclear weapons and that, in the end, the West will do nothing to prevent it. Indeed, one of the jobs of the Pakistani troops will be military training for the Saudi army, a function that was formerly performed by American troops.

In 2008, Iran was our bitter enemy, and Saudi Arabia was our close ally. It was in 2008 that I first wrote, based on a Generational Dynamics analysis, that in the coming Clash of Civilizations world war, Iran would be allied with the West, while Saudi Arabia and Pakistan would be allied with China. (See "China 'betrays' Iran, as internal problems in both countries mount" from 2008.)

During the last six years, it's been very interesting to see how Saudi Arabia has moved away from the U.S., while Iran is moving closer to the U.S. The hardline survivors of Iran's 1979 Great Islamic Revolution have been retiring and dying, leaving behind younger generations that like the West, and have no particular animus against Israel. In Pakistan, on the other hand, the people are increasingly hostile to the United States and to India. MEMRI and The National (UAE)

Iran calls al-Qaeda the 'the Saudi-US lovechild of terrorism'

Iran sees the growing accord between Saudi Arabia and Pakistan as a threat to Iran and to Shia Muslims in general, and uses the usual award-winning talking point of blaming the U.S. for everything to express its anger.

Iran itself has been targeted by al-Qaeda linked Jundullah (Soldiers of God), which has perpetrated major attacks on Shia mosques and Revolutionary Guard stations in southeastern Iran. Another al-Qaeda linked group, Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ), wants to exterminate all Shias and Hazaras in Pakistan. According to the head of a Shia political organization in Pakistan:

"Not one day passes without a martyr falling in Karachi, in Peshawar, in all Pakistani cities. If we have thirty days in a month, we have more than 100 martyrs every month. And they are being killed by the Saudi support. Saudi Arabia is supporting those who are behind these attacks."

Iran has developed a narrative that blames all terrorism in the Mideast on America's support for Afghan and Pakistani troops that were fighting against Russian troops in Afghanistan in the 1980s. According to Iranian analyst Dr. Ismail Salami, al-Qaeda is the "love child of terror" spawned by Saudi Arabia and America:

"Originally established by Washington in Afghanistan during the military occupation of the country by Soviet Union, it was called al-Qaeda, meaning 'base'. Soon, the group was expanded under the aegis of the CIA and Saudi-funded Pakistani intelligence agency (ISI) in order to oust the Soviet forces from the region and safeguard the interests of the US government.

Following a secret long-term agenda, Washington recruited militants from different parts of the region including Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Jordan, Yemen and central Asian countries with the ultimate goal of disseminating and instilling an ideology of perversion in the name of Islam in the world. ...

In the final analysis, the center cannot hold and the Saudi-US lovechild of terrorism is running amuck and falling apart."

I have to say that's quite a fanciful narrative, though no more fanciful than some of the things you hear from the New York Times or NBC News. Ahlul Bayt News Agency (Iran) and Press TV (Iran)

(Comments: For reader comments, questions and discussion, see the 11-Feb-14 World View -- Pakistan asked to send 30,000 troops to Saudi Arabia thread of the Generational Dynamics forum. Comments may be posted anonymously.) (11-Feb-2014) Permanent Link
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