The new face of terrror .hurriyet2008-detailbox-newslink { font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size:13px; font-weight:bold; text-decoration:none; color:#000000;} .hurriyet2008-detailbox-newslink:hover { font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size:13px; font-weight:bold; text-decoration:underline; color:#990000;} NEW DELHI - The brazen attacks targeting Mumbai and killing more than 150 people, indicate a crucial transformation in the fundamentalist violence in India as the assault differs from the previous attacks with its sophisticated planning and ’anti-Western agenda,’ say analysts

The brazen attacks in Mumbai signal a sea change in the fundamentalist violence that has beset India, showing sophisticated planning and an "anti-Western agenda," analysts say.

"The sheer scale and planning involved is markedly different from previous attacks - it's a watershed attack," Singapore-based security analyst Rohan Gunaratna, author of the book "Inside al-Qaeda" said.

Previous assaults in India have involved planting bombs in public places such as busy markets or on trains as in 2006 when militants staged serial attacks on Mumbai's congested rail network, killing 186 people. The attacks targeted civilians "with the intention to foment unrest between Hindu and Muslims," said Jane's Country Risk analyst Urmila Venugopalan.

But "the apparent focus on killing or capturing foreign businesspeople, specifically U.S. and UK nationals, has never occurred (in India) before, suggesting a wider global anti-Western agenda," said Venugopalan.

Analysts said the tactics used in Mumbai appeared to be inspired by those of al-Qaeda or groups linked to al-Qaeda, such as the Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Toiba. Lashkar, which was blamed for the 2001 attack on India's parliament that brought the nuclear-armed neighbors close to war, is fighting Indian rule in revolt-hit Indian Kashmir.

"Al-Qaeda has become a shorthand word to claim the cause of radical Islam - it's more of a brand than an integrated corporation," said Robert Ayers, a security expert at British international affairs think-tank Chatham House. "It's going to take a while to determine who are responsible. But it has all the characteristics of an al-Qaeda attack - multiple strikes across multiple areas," Ayers said. "This was an extremely well-planned operation, the logistics, the timing. The operational planning was very, very professional," he added.

Amit Chanda, head of the Indian Subcontinent practice of Risk Advisory, also said it appeared the attacks were carried out with an anti-Western aim with the militants' "deliberate selection" of foreign hostages.

"This (attack) is a statement about India's relationship with the UK, the U.S. and Israel," Chanda said. Israel is India's second-largest arms supplier. "There has been a trend for countries that have suffered a major attack to describe it as their own 9/11, for example, the Spanish after the 2004 Madrid train bombings or the Pakistanis after the Marriott bombing in Islamabad," Chanda said. "I think this attack - because of its audacity and brazenness - will be remembered as 'India's 9/11,'" he said.