The pic below comes from a Daniel Pipes article about the Red Mosque and the gov't action undertaken by the Pakistani military against the militants. You can also view this picture gallery from the CBC as well.
A lot is going on in Pakistan these days. A perfect storm scenario is unfolding, one that will endanger Canadian troops in Afghanistan should Pakistan crumble. The Canadian mission in Afghanistan depends a great deal on Pakistan holding as a stable flank. If Pakistan becomes untenable or even a failed state, our troops in Afghanistan would be comprimised. This is not to suggest that our boys wouldn't be able to hold their ground against the enemy. There is NO doubt in my mind that they could. From a political standpoint however, the whole Afghanistan mission becomes an albatross should Canadian casualties mount.
Let's put the Red Mosque conflict into its proper context. The guerillas win if the regular army opposing them loses heart and decides to no longer fight. They win by hanging on and simply surviving. Clearly that did not happen. So how did the Red Mosque rebellion start? Take a bunch of young madrassa students, place them in isolation, indoctrinate them and equip them. Now I realize that it's a lot more complicated than that. The public has to be sympathetic as do the police and the politicians. You also have to have jihadi sympathizers within the gov't security apparatus (such as Pakistan's ISI) as well. No rebellion has ever succeeded in isolation. It must have the public's support.
By know you must be thinking, 'So what? What does Pakistan have to do with Bible prophecy?'. This is where it gets mighty interesting. In this frontpagemag article it states:
A huge free trade agreement between China and Pakistan came into effect earlier this month, of which this transportation route (the Karakoram highway - JC) is an important piece. According to a Pakistani development analyst, the Pakistani government plans to spend $300 million to expand the highway and develop other transportation routes with western China and the Central Asian countries, so that they can “not only access the Pakistani market, but also reach out to the Middle East, Africa, South Asia, Europe, etc through Gwadar Port in southwestern Pakistan.”
Which of course is darn near impossible with hordes of AK-47 wielding jihadis in the way. So what we have then is short-term American interests and the long-term strategic interests of the Chinese converging in Pakistan. This Karakoram highway is the detail that pulls this all together. I believe that this super-highway MUST be built in order for the Kings of the East (China and likely India too) to make their way to the plains of Armaggeddon. You can bet your life savings that there's no way the Americans or the Chinese are going to allow Pakistan to fall by the wayside. It's strategic location to India and Afghanistan and it's importance for Karakoram to succeed guarantees it. I have a feeling we're going to hear and see a lot more out of this country in the near future.