(1982) ISI, CIA and Mossad carried out a covert transfer of Soviet-made Palestine Liberation Organization and Lebanese weapons captured by the Israelis during the Israeli invasion of Lebanon in June 1982 and their subsequent transfer to Pakistan and then into Afghanistan. All knowledge of this weapon transfer was kept secret and was only made public recently.
(1982-1997) ISI played a central role in the U.S.-backed guerrilla war to oust the Soviet Army from Afghanistan in the 1980s. That Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)-backed effort flooded Pakistan with weapons and with Afghan, Pakistani and Arab "mujahideen", who were motivated to fight as a united force protecting fellow Muslims in Soviet occupied Afghanistan. The CIA relied on the ISI to train fighters, distribute arms, and channel money. The ISI trained about 83,000 Afghan mujahideen between 1983 and 1997, and dispatched them to Afghanistan. B. Raman of the South Asia Analysis Group, an Indian think-tank, claims that the Central Intelligence Agency through the ISI promoted the smuggling of heroin into Afghanistan in order to turn the Soviet troops into heroin addicts and thus greatly reducing their fighting potential.
(1986) Worrying that among the large influx of Afghan refugees that come into Pakistan due to the Soviet-Afghan war were members of KHAD (Afghan Intelligence), the ISI successfully convinced Mansoor Ahmed who was the Charge-de-Affairs of the Afghan Embassy in Islamabad to turn his back on the Soviet backed Afghan government. He and his family were secretly escorted out of their residence and were given safe passage on a London bound British Airways flight in exchange for classified information in regard to Afghan agents in Pakistan. The Soviet and Afghan diplomats tried their best to find the family but were unsuccessful.
(1989) ISI was unable to induce the Afghan mujahideen - to whom it had provided large sums of funding during its fight with Marxist forces during the 1980s - to cooperate and unite following the withdrawal of the Soviet Union from Pakistan's neighbor Afghanistan in 1989. The war against the Marxist government and civil war between the Mujahideen that followed killed many thousands and caused enormous destruction.
(1992) ISI engineered the takeover of Afghanistan by the hard-line Islamic Taliban regime after the fall of the Communist government in Kabul in 1992.
(1994) The Taliban regime that the ISI supported after 1994 to suppress warlord fighting and in hopes of bringing stability to Afghanistan proved too rigid in its Islamic interpretations and too fond of the Al-Qaeda based on its soil. Despite receiving large sums of aid from Pakistan, the Taliban leader Mullah Omar is reported to have insulted a visiting delegation of Saudi Prince Sultan and an ISI general asking that the Taliban turn over bin Laden to Saudi Arabia. Following the 9/11 attack on the United States by Al-Qaeda, Pakistan felt it necessary to switch sides and cooperate with the US and the Northern Alliance in a war against the Taliban.
(1970s) ISI failed to stop Indian infiltration in East Pakistan, which led to the creation of Bangladesh.
(1950s) The ISI's Covert Action Division was used in assisting the insurgents in India's North-East.
(1960s) In the late 1960s assists the Sikh Home Rule Movement of London-based Charan Singh Panchi, which was subsequently transformed into the Khalistan Movement, headed by Jagjit Singh Chauhan in which many other members of the Sikh diaspora in Europe, United States and Canada joined and then demanded the separate country of Khalistan.
(1965) the 1965 war in Kashmir provoked a major crisis in intelligence. When the war started, there was a complete collapse of the operations of all the intelligence agencies, which had been largely devoted to domestic investigative work such as tapping telephone conversations and chasing political suspects. The covert infiltration plan, codenamed Operation Gibraltar was essentially an intelligence fiasco, partly due to ISI, after having overestimated so called "local support" to infiltrators in Kashmir and having underestimated the Indian response to the plan. The ISI, after the commencement of the 1965 Indo-Pakistan war, was apparently unable to locate an Indian armored division due to its preoccupation with political affairs. Ayub Khan set up a committee headed by General Yahya Khan to examine the working of the agencies.
(1969-1974) The U.S. Central Intelligence Agency and ISI worked in tandem during the Nixon Administration in assisting the Khalistan movement in Punjab.
(1980) The PAF Field Intelligence Unit at their base in Karachi in July 1980 captured an Indian agent. He was interrogated and revealed that a large network of Indian spies were functioning in Karachi. The agent claimed that these spies, in addition to espionage, had also assassinated a few armed personnel. He also said the leader of the spy ring was being headed by the food and beverages manager at the Intercontinental Hotel in Karachi and a number of serving Air Force officers and ratings were on his payroll. The ISI decided to survey the manager to see who he was in contact with, but then President of Pakistan Zia-ul Haq superseded and wanted the manager and anyone else involved in the case arrested immediately. It was later proven that the manager was completely innocent.
(1983) Ilam Din also known as Ilmo was an infamous Indian spy working from Pakistan. He had eluded being captured many times but on March 23 at 3 a.m., Ilmo and two other Indian spies were apprehended by Pakistani Rangers as they were illegally crossing into Pakistan from India. Their mission was to spy and report back on the new military equipment that Pakistan will be showing in their annual March 23 Pakistan day parade. Ilmo after being thoroughly interrogated was then forced by the ISI to send false information to his RAW handlers in India. This process continued and many more Indian spies in Pakistan were flushed out such as Roop Lal.
(1984) ISI uncovered a secret deal in which naval base facilities were granted by Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi to the USSR in Vizag and the Andaman & Nicobar Island and the alleged attachment of KGB advisers to the then Lieutenant General Sunderji who was the commander of Operation Bluestar in the Golden Temple in Amritsar in June 1984.
(1984) ISI failed to perform a proper background check on the British company which supplied the Pakistan Army with its Arctic-weather gear. When Pakistan attempted to secure the top of the Siachen Glacier in 1984, it placed a large order for Arctic-weather gear with the same company that also supplied the Indian Army with its gear. Indians were easily alerted to the large Pakistani purchase and deduced that this large purchase could be used to equip troops to capture the glacier. India then mounted an operation (Operation Meghdoot) and secured the top of the glacier before Pakistan.
(1985) A routine background checks on various staff members working for the Indian embassy raised suspicions on an Indian woman who worked as a school teacher in an Indian School in Islamabad. Her enthusiastic and too friendly attitude gave her up. She was in reality an agent working for the Research and Analysis Wing (RAW). ISI monitored her movements to a hotel in Islamabad where she rendezvoused with a local Pakistani man who worked as an engineer for Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission. ISI then confronted her and were then able to turn her into a double agent spying on the Indian Embassy in Islamabad.
(1999) ISI failed to calculate the international reaction to the Kargil operation in summer of 1999. Subsequent heavy pressure by foreign countries such as USA forced the Pakistani-backed forces to withdraw from Kargil.
(2001) Some Indian authors allege that ISI supported persons involved in the 2001 Indian Parliament attack.
(2006) Some Indian authors allege that ISI supported persons involved in the 2006 Varanasi bombings.
(2006) Some Indian authors allege that ISI supported persons involved in the 11 July 2006 Mumbai train bombings.
(2007) Some authors allege that ISI supported persons involved in the 25 August 2007 Hyderabad bombings.
(1970s) ISI failed to suppress the political parties in East Pakistan.
(1980) ISI became aware of a plot to assassinate the President of Pakistan, Zia-ul-Haq and then launch a bloody coup to depose the current government and install an extreme Islamic government in its place. The attempted assassination and coup was to occur on March 23, 1980 during the annual March 23 Pakistan day parade. The masterminds behind the coup were high ranking Military and Intelligence officers and were led by Major General Tajammal Hussain Malik, his son, Captain Naveed and his nephew Major Riaz, a former Military Intelligence officer. ISI decided against arresting these men outright because they did not know how deep this conspiracy went and kept these men under strict surveillance. As the date of the annual parade approached, ISI was satisfied that it had identified the major players in this conspiracy and then arrested these men along with quite a few high ranking military officers.
(1980s) Elements of I.S.I. support development of Al Queda in the neighborhood of the Durand Line, according to New York Times reporters James Risen and Judith Miller.
(1978) ISI decided to spy on the residence of Colonel Hussain Imam Mabruk who was a Military Attaché to the Embassy of Libya in Islamabad as he had made some inflammatory statements towards the military regime of Zia-ul-Haq. The spying paid off as he was seen talking with two Pakistani gentlemen who entered and left the compound suspiciously. The ISI monitored the two men and were later identified as Pakistani exiles that hated the current military regime and were Bhutto loyalists. They had received terrorist training in Libya and were ready to embark on a terrorist campaign in Pakistan to force the Army to step down from power. All members of the conspiracy were apprehended before any damage could be done.
(1981) In 1981, a Libyan Security company called Al Murtaza Associates sent recruiters to Pakistan to entice former soldiers and servicemen for high paying security jobs in Libya. In reality, Libya was recruiting mercenaries to fight with Chad and Egypt as it had border disputes with both nations. Only later did the ISI become aware of the plot and the whole scheme was stopped, but nearly 2,700 Pakistanis had already left for those jobs.
(1979) After the failure of Operation Eagle Claw, the U.S. media outlets such as Newsweek and Time reported that CIA agents stationed in Tehran had obtained information in regard to the location of the hostages, in-house information from a Pakistani cook who used to work for the U.S. Embassy. ISI successfully gathered evidence, and intercepted communication documents and showed it to the Iranian Chief of J-2 which cleared the cook. The Iranian chief of intelligence said, “We know, the Big Satan is a big liar.”
(1979) ISI foiled an attempt by the French Ambassador to Pakistan, Le Gourrierce and his First Secretary, Jean Forlot who were on a surveillance mission to Kahuta Research Laboratories nuclear complex on June 26, 1979. Both were intercepted and their cameras and other sensitive equipment were confiscated. Intercepted documents later on showed that the two were recruited by the CIA.
Soviet Union and Post-Soviet states
(1980) ISI had placed a mole in the Soviet Union's embassy in Islamabad. The mole reported that the Third Secretary in the Soviet Embassy was after information in regard to the Karakurum Highway and was obtaining it from a middle level employee, Mr. Ejaz, of the Northern Motor Transport Company. ISI contacted Mr. Ejaz who then confessed that a few months ago the Soviet diplomat approached him and threatened his family unless he divulged sensitive information in regard to the highway such as alignment of the road, location of bridges, the number of Chinese personnel working on the Highway, etc. The ISI instead of confronting the Soviet diplomat chose to feed him with false information. This continued until the Soviet diplomat was satisfied that Mr. Ejaz had been bled white of all the information and then dropped him as a source.
(1991-1993) Major General Sultan Habib who was an operative of the ISI's Joint Intelligence Miscellaneous department successfully procured nuclear material while being posted as the Defense Attaché in the Pakistani Embassy in Moscow from 1991 to 1993 and concurrently obtaining other materials from Central Asian Republics, Poland and the former Czechoslovakia. After Moscow, Major General Habib then coordinated shipping of missiles from North Korea and the training of Pakistani experts in the missile production. These two acts greatly enhanced Pakistan's Nuclear weapons program and their missile delivery systems.
(1980s) ISI successfully intercepted two American private weapons dealers during the Soviet-Afghan war of the 1980s. One American diplomat (his name has not been de-classified) who lived in the F-7/4 sector of Islamabad was spotted by an ISI agent in a seedy part of Rawalpindi by his Car's diplomatic plates. He was bugged and trailed and was found to be in contact with various tribal groups supplying them with weapons for their fight with the Soviet Army in Afghanistan. Another was Eugene Clegg, a teacher in the American International School who also indulged in weapons trade. All of them were put out of business.
(2001) Some authors allege that ISI supported persons involved in the September 11, 2001 attacks in the United States.
(2002) Some authors allege that ISI supported the 1999 release of Ahmed Omar Saeed Sheikh who was subsequently convicted of the 2002 beheading of Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl.