In a message released by al-Qaeda #2 Ayman al-Zawahiri, the terrorist leader sought to incite Pakistanis to jihad against government, citing the raid on Lal Masjid (Red Mosque) as the latest cause. Zawahiri said that "jihad is the only salvation" for Pakistani Muslims. And, ultimately displaying the true ideological split between the Islamists and the true pro-democracy protesters in Pakistan who have been united in their desire to see the end of Musharraf's rule, Zawahiri delineated, "Rigged elections will not save you, politics will not save you, and bargaining, bootlicking, negotiations with the criminals, and political maneuvers will not save you."
Just before Zawahiri's message was released, Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf warned publicly that his government "would not tolerate militancy at any of Pakistan's thousands of religious schools [madrassas]."
In Pakistan, the question is being publicly asked how such an armed fortress within the Red Mosque could have been created 'under the noses' of Pakistani intelligence within its capital city. Munir Malik, the president of Pakistan's Supreme Court Bar Association, openly asked "How come the intelligence agencies were not aware of the happenings in the mosque?" The answer is openly known, but not openly discussed: A significant portion of Pakistan's military intelligence (ISI) are sympathetic, supportve or actively engaged with the Islamists of the Taliban-al-Qaeda alliance. Lal Masjid was a recruiting center for the Taliban and al-Qaeda, and among the dead inside the final redoubt in the mosque are what Pakistani officials identify as "foreign rebels" linked to the Taliban and al-Qaeda.