President Musharraf, in an interview with the Straits Times, made it clear that any unilateral action by the United States on Pakistan soil would be construed as an invasion. He made it clear the troublesome northwest region of Pakistan which contains insurgents and al-Qeda forces, is an integral part of his nation. :I challenge anybody coming into our mountains. They would regret the day. It’s not easy there.” However, he also said, “Nobody will come here until we ask them to come. And, we haven’t asked them.” the president praised the dead Benazir Bhutto for her courage and insisted it was still unclear how she died. In response to questins about the ISI, Musharraf explained there might be an “odd person…who is following his own agenda.”
It is interesting that Musharraf claims he told Bill Clinton who had visited Pakistan, about the importance of a political settlement in Afghanistan and claimed “senior elements within the Taleban are for a negotiated political settlement.” For some reason, Musharraf did not pass on his feeling to the current occupant of the White House. Back in Washington D.C., Admiral Michael Mullen told reporters the US was “extremely cocnerned” about al-Qaeda in Pakistan and it was up to Pakistan armed forces to take action. Perhaps, it is time for Musharraf to sit down and explain to President Bush there is need for a political settlement in Afghanistan.