Tag Archives: US -Pakistan

US Moves From Personality To Nation In Pakistan

The United States government apparently is considering the importance of what Senator Joseph Biden has termed, moving away from “a policy focused on personality” to one focused on what is best for the people of Pakistan. Deputy Secretary of State John Negroponte made clear the Bush administration decision to cooperate with whoever has been elected by the people of Pakistan to lead their nation. Ironically, a major Bush argument in 2000 against the Clinton admnistration was its focus on nation building. Bush apparently is now convinced trying to impose US will on other nations invariably results in disaster.

Meanwhile, in Pakistan, President Musharraf is also moving in the direction of cooperating with Pakistan’s political leaders. He is willing to compromise on the key issue of his sacking of judges who opposed him. Musharraf has offered to retore the judges provided none of them is allowed to sit on cases involving the president.

An important issue still to be resolved is what would happen if Pakistan’s new parliament instituted impeachment against President Musharraf. Which judges would then sit in judgement on the president?

US Ready To Fight In Pakistan Says Gates!

The situation in Iraq remains volatile, the war in Afghanistan is hampered by lack of clear vision and disagreement between the United States and its NATO allies, but Secetary of Defense Robert Gates is ready to dispatch US forces to Pakistan to assist in the war against militants. “We remain ready, willing and able to assist the Pakistanis and partner with them to provide additional training, to conduct joint operations, sould they desire to do so.” He emphasized America would not take any unilateral action but would only send troops if requeted by the government of Pakistan.

At points, observers remain confused as to whether there is anyone in the Bush administration who has a focused view on world affairs. There has been no “victory” in Iraq, and prospects for stability are still uncertain. Afghanistan over the past years has seen the spead of Taliban influence, not its dimunition. Where does Secretary of Defense Gates intend to find the troops who will be sent to Pakistan?

During his campaign swing in New Hampshire, Senator McCain casually mentioned America might be tied down in Iraq for abou 100 years. Adolf Hitler boasted about a Nazi Germany that would last a 1000 years. At least the Republican party is going to spare America the prospect of such an extended war, they offer only a 100 year war in the Middle East and Asia. Of course, none of the children of these men interested in war will ever see the front lines of combat. Pakistan’s army has to handle this situation, the last thing they need are Americans fighting in the northwest regions of their nation. The appearance of US forces would be the best recruiting message the Taliban could have in order to obtain new recruits.

Who Is In Charge Of US Operations In Pakistan?

There have been extensive discussion in Washington D.C. regarding new approaches to deal with militants operating in Pakistan. Among the suggestions is authorizing Special Operations forces and the CIA greater leeway in instituting military campaigns in the northwest region of Pakistan which is home to thousands of militants. One problem is deciding which bureaucrat in the Bush administration will be in charge of such operations. The State Department wants our Ambassador to India to have final decision making on such operations. Meanwhile, the Pakistan military has announced it intends to capture Taliban leader, Baitullah Mehsud, dead or alive.

Each passing day makes even clearer the ineptness and disorganization of the Bush administration not only in conducting foreign policy, but in basic issues of military policy. From the moment the ill fated invasion of Iraq began without sufficient troops to carry out the mission, Bush has begun one policy after another in an endeavor to find solutions. The introduction of American troops in the northwest appears to be a mistake since it will only arouse anti-Westrn feelings even among those who dislike the Taliban. The central issue is creating a Pakistan army that is able to handle these situations because then it becomes a Pakistani solution, not an American one.