Washington, DC – On the anniversary of 9/11, the focus is predominantly on Islamic Jihadists from different organizations like Al-Qaeda, but there are other dangerous outfits hiding in our plain sight and operating in the name of Khalistan, who may well prove to be the next facilitator of terror attacks in Northern America, including both the United States and Canada.
Lest we forget, the Air India memorial at Ahakista, on the southwestern coast of Ireland, stands as a mute witness to the Air India Flight 182 passenger jet explosion on June 23, 1985, that claimed the lives of all 329 passengers and crew members. Sikh extremists were accused of sabotaging the Air India aircraft, which vanished from radar over the nearby Atlantic, en route from Montreal to London. The alleged cause was one of two suitcase bombs, built for Talwinder Singh Parmar by Inderjit Singh Reyat. Both were Canadian citizens living in British Columbia. Their second bomb, on its way to another Air India flight, killed two baggage handlers in Tokyo.
Five months after the disaster, both suspects were arrested. Although Canadian police pursued the case in belief that Parmar had masterminded the attack, charges against him were ultimately dropped.
Our Managing Editor, Poonam Sharma, who attended the public hearings of the Air India trial in Vancouver told us: “It was heart wrenching to see the charges dropped as the relatives and friends who had regularly attended the court proceedings and waited patiently for justice to be done, went away with nothing.”
Reyat, a Sikh from Vancouver, eventually pleaded guilty to manslaughter in connection with the bombing and was sentenced to five years in prison in 2003. Earlier Reyat was sentenced to 10 years in prison for help in building a bomb that killed two baggage handlers in Japan.
The case brought to light the extremes these Khalistan movement supporters can go in terrorizing the masses by killing innocent people including women and children.
In an incisive and detailed report, “Khalistan: A Project of Pakistan” veteran journalist Terry Milewski explores the concept of Khalistan as a project of Pakistan, designed to subvert the national security of both Canada and India. To a discerning eye, one can safely include the Homeland security of the United States of America as under threat, as some of these groups like Sikhs for Justice are operating primarily from the US soil, while reaching out to China and Russia for help.
Milewski’s report analyzed the threat to Canada but the same sword hangs over other nations as well, including the US. Our country has already suffered a 9/11 planned by Osama Bin Laden, who was later found hiding within the area under direct supervision of the Pakistan Army. Direct patronage of Osama Bin Laden by Pakistani establishment raises similar fears for their Khalistani stooges being used as Trojan horses to carry out another 9/11 on American soil. The Khalistani activists are prone to increasingly being used by the dangerous new axis of evil: China-Pakistan-Turkey, which seeks to harm the US and it’s democratic allies. Khalistani activists are misusing our First Amendment to wage a war on our allies and it may be the American public which could bear the cost of this war.
In his report, Milewski noted that in 2018, an international lobby campaign advocating for an independent Khalistan successfully removed references to “Sikh (Khalistani) extremist ideologies and movements,” from the Canandian Ministry of Public Safety’s Public Report on the Terrorism Threat to Canada. In response, the federal government took the unprecedented step of amending its national security statement, placating a vocal domestic constituency, and replacing the original language with “Extremists who support violent means to establish an independent state within India.”
“In the ensuing domestic debate, a more important issue was obscured. This was also the first time that Canada’s national security community elevated violent extremists advocating for an independent Khalistan into a top-five threat to Canadian national security,” wrote Milewski.
The above revelations about the vested interests of Khalistanis, successfully operating in Canada to subvert national security, should definitely be a cause of concern for US lawmakers in their dealings with such lobby groups who hobnob with them on Capitol Hill.
Citing reports from India to demonstrate the continuing threat that Pakistan-sponsored Khalistani terrorism poses, Milewski writes: “It’s clear who’s really driving the Khalistan bus: Pakistan,” adding, in truth, “the Khalistan movement has been going nowhere in the Sikhs’ home state.”
It’s a well known fact that people in Punjab have no appetite for another bloody round of a terror-infested movement, and the Khalistani cause has little traction in Punjab itself, but there is constant Pakistani support of Khalistani extremists, which also entails leveraging extremists based in Canada, including supporters with ties to terrorism, wrote Milewski.
In recent months, Sikhs for Justice (International) under its poster boy and legal advisor Gurpatwant Singh Pannun, while advocating for a 20/20 Referendum scheduled for November 2020, for a Khalistan with the secession of North Indian state of Punjab from democratic federal India, has offered thousands of dollars to gullible youth in Punjab to carry out SFJ’s alleged nefarious activities.
“Rather, it makes it all the more bizarre that undying solidarity with Pakistan has become a kind of theme song for the American lawyer, Gurpatwant Singh Pannun, who leads Sikhs For Justice, the driving force in the campaign for a referendum on Sikh independence,” wrote Milewski.
“Although he claims to lead a movement for “human rights,” Pannun has unblushingly sided with China in its border dispute with India and recently wrote to Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan, swearing that, “if India ever attacked Pakistan, the Pro-Khalistan Sikhs will extend full support to Pakistan,” cited Milewski – but in truth, the Khalistan movement would be of very little use in a conflict with India itself, given the lack of support it commands. Pakistani links of Pannun are also the reason why he never raises the issue of secession of Pakistan’s Punjab province in the proposed Khalistan.
Pannun in an interview to the author, disclosed that Sikhs for Justice (International), was floated to support the 20/20 Referendum cause while Sikhs for Justice has been banned in India.
Milewski noted that “the Canadian government has stated it will not recognize it (20/20 Referendum). However, the report warns that the referendum provides oxygen that fuels extremist ideologies, radicalizes young Canadians, wreaks havoc on reconciliation, and usurps legislatures.”
Cautioning politicians of all hue and color against going with the belief that separatist groups such as Sikhs for Justice speak for the Sikh community, Milewski said: “The evidence, instead, suggests that they speak for Pakistan.” This should act as a red flag for the US administration and political leaders on the possibility of use of these Pak-proxy groups by China in case of any asymmetrical war with the US. That Pakistan has been acting increasingly as a vassal state of China is no secret and it is high time that our President, intelligence establishment, Congressmen and Senators take note of this clear and present danger.
In the foreword to Milewski’s detailed report, Ujjal Dossanjh, former British Columbia Premier and former federal Liberal Cabinet Minister, and Shuvaloy Majumdar, MLI Program Director and Munk Senior Fellow for Foreign Policy, argued, “The Milewski report should be essential reading for any who wish to understand Pakistan’s influence in guiding the Khalistan proposition, its perversion of the Sikh faith, and its ongoing campaign of extremism and terrorism in two of the world’s important democracies.”
Tejinder Singh was the Founder and Editor of India America Today, and is the inspiration for Global Strat View.