July 22: White House would consider direct assaults in Pakistan

Frances Townsend, the White House homeland security adviser, signaled today that the Bush administration would consider direct assaults on al-Qaeda hideouts in Pakistan.

Townsend was asked on "Fox News Sunday" why the United States isn't sending Special Forces, attack drones and anything else it can to wipe out al-Qaeda. She replied, "Just because we don't speak about things publicly doesn't mean we're not doing many of the things you're talking about."

She added, "Job number one is to protect the American people, and there are no options that are off the table."

A National Intelligence Estimate released Tuesday reported that al-Qaeda has grown stronger, in part because it has established "a safe haven" in northwest Pakistan, in the Federally Administered Tribal Area that is beyond the national government's control.

Pakistani Foreign Minister Kurshid Kasuri warned on CNN's "Late Edition" against the White House bypassing the Pakistani military in any operation.

"If you have superiority in technical intelligence, please share that with us," he said. "And then you talk of going after targets -- you will lose the war, the battle for hearts and minds. It is much better to rely on Pakistan['s] army. Pakistan['s] army can do the job much better, and the result will be that there will be far, far less collateral damage."

Kasuri added, "People in Pakistan get very upset when, despite all the sacrifices that Pakistan has been making, you know, you have the sort of questions that are sometimes asked by the American media" about whether Islamabad is doing enough to fight terrorists.

Sen. Evan Bayh (D-Ind.), appearing on Fox, called into question whether Pakistan has the ability to defeat al-Qaeda. But he added that the United States had to be careful in acting on its own. "If it is clear that we're going into their national territory, we run the risk of undermining a regime that has been one of our allies in this struggle," Bayh cautioned.

Appearing later on CNN, Townsend said the United States has provided intelligence to Pakistan. "We work quite closely with them," she said. "While I understand [Kasuri's] anger, we should also be clear that we believe Pakistan has been a very good ally in the war on terrorism."

But she added, "No question that we will use any instrument at our disposal to deal with the problem of Osama bin Laden and [bin Laden deputy Ayman al-]Zawahiri and al-Qaeda."

Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf decided to strike a "political solution" with tribal leaders to kick al-Qaeda out of the region, national intelligence director Mike McConnell said on NBC's "Meet the Press." Instead, "the people who live in these federally administrated tribal areas ... made a safe haven for training and recruiting."

McConnell said that Pakistan's help has been central to U.S. efforts to capture and kill al-Qaeda's leaders, but he believes bin Laden is living in the country.

On CBS's "Face the Nation," Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.) backed the administration's stance. "I don't think we should take anything off the table. Wherever we find these evil people, we should go get them," he said.

But he renewed his complaint that the White House's focus on Iraq has diverted attention from real terrorist threats to the United States, such as those inside Pakistan. "The fact of the matter is that the invasion of Iraq, the worst foreign policy blunder in the history of the country, has created an area for al-Qaeda that didn't exist before the invasion," he said.


Director of intelligence

McConnell also said that there is no evidence of al-Qaeda sleeper cells within the United States, yet intelligence authorities have identified people raising money for and sympathetic to the cause of Islamic extremism. He added that he worries there are sleeper cells in the United States and that "there are some elements under" court-approved surveillance.

The intelligence director said "the most serious threat" to the United States is that terrorists will get through a greatly strengthened defense wall. "Their intent is to effect an attack with mass casualties. A second attempt would be political or infrastructure targets, to even include economic targets that would have a lasting impact," McConnell said.

While terrorists have not achieved a nuclear capability, McConnell said, they are focusing on explosives that could release biological, chemical or radiological weapons.

Asked about so-called "enhanced interrogation techniques" - measures for getting information out of detainees that many worry amount to torture - McConnell said the United States does not practice torture and that fewer than 100 people have been subjected to enhanced interrogations. President Bush gave the CIA permission last week to resume such interrogation techniques, albeit under tighter guidelines. McConnell said the procedures do not involve lasting injury.

A censure resolution

Sen. Russ Feingold (Wis.), one of the chamber's most liberal Democrats, announced on NBC that he would introduce resolutions to censure President Bush for the conduct of the Iraq war and for the administration's warrantless surveillance program and interrogation techniques, which Feingold called "torture."

"Usually when presidents are repudiated in elections they say, 'Well, maybe I ought to reassess,' " Feingold said. "Instead he did just the opposite."

"I think we need to do something serious in terms of accountability," Feingold said. He said the censure resolutions, which do not carry any legal weight, would chastise the administration for getting the United States into war in Iraq, its failure to "adequately" prepare the military, continued "misleading statements" about the war, and its "outrageous attack on the rule of law."

Feingold said censure resolutions might also be introduced regarding Vice President Cheney and Attorney General Alberto Gonzales.

"We need to have on the historical record some kind of indication that what has happened here was ... disastrous," he said.

Feingold introduced a censure resolution last March that attacked the warrantless surveillance program, which he then called an "illegal program to spy on American citizens on American soil." It picked up only three co-sponsors and never advanced past the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Sen. Mitch McConnell (Ky.), the Republican leader, ridiculed Feingold's proposal, which comes on the heels of an all-night session last week led by Reid to force a change in Iraq policy. "The kind of stunt," he said on CNN, "... gives you a sense why this Congress has a 14 percent approval rating. We think it's the lowest in the history of polling. All they do is have Iraq votes and investigations."

Reid, meanwhile, was not ready to back Feingold's measure.
"I'm sure Russ Feingold will try to find a way to offer that amendment," Reid said. "The Republicans won't let us vote on it. They'll block it. ... The president already has the mark of the American people that he's the worst president we've ever had, and I don't think we need a censure resolution in the Senate to prove that."

By Zachary Goldfarb |  July 22, 2007; 2:07 PM ET
Previous: July 15: Hadley outlines Iraq plans | Next: July 29: Democrats still pursuing prosecutor for Gonzales

Comments

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Let's not go into Pakistan to look for bin Laden. It might destabilize Musharraf, who we need to support since he runs a military dictatorship that supported the Taliban and proliferated nuclear weapons technology throughout the world. He's our friend.

Posted by: Desert Leap | July 22, 2007 3:16 PM

Hmmm. Back last February, The Decider said he wouldn't go after Osama up the Waziristan because "it was wild country". Ms. Townsend later demurred that "it's not as if we had Osama's house address; he's going from cave to cave". The Bushies called off a special forces raid to grab Osama's Number Two lest it discomfit Musharraf. Now they've reconsidered and may send in Special Forces. They will no doubt have the great success in breaking down doors and blowing up civilian farms and marriage ceremonies that they have had in Iraq. They'll even cook up a special Waziristan service ribbon for GIs to wear but whether they'll get Osama depends on Bush's relations with the Bin Laden family, once Bush's main financial backer. What goes around comes around.

Posted by: california condor | July 22, 2007 3:18 PM

So in five years will we be talking about "the quagmire in Pakistan?"

The Bush/Cheney folks seem to think the American military it has so misused can yet take on another war WHERE THEY HAVE ALREADY TOLD US NOT TO BYPASS THEIR MILITARY AND WHERE OUR PRESENCE WOULD BE SURE TO INCREASE VIOLENT RESISTANCE (terrorism).

Impeach them right now.

Posted by: 1bernice | July 22, 2007 3:29 PM

Yes go on start another war, attack Pakistan and make it into another Beruit thats what USA has always been doing. Use and abuse. They have always used the military dictators in Pakistan to get what they want be it fighting the Russians in Afgahnistan or the USA's war on terror. The irony is that these military dictators dance on the USA's tune just to be in Power. They dont care about the people in their country.

Posted by: Suraiya Kasim | July 22, 2007 3:41 PM

Please dont bomb our innocent people in the name of Osama! you can take osama anywhere you want, we dont support him, just dont bomb us, enough killings

Posted by: Salman | July 22, 2007 3:43 PM

This is absolutely insane. When such a irresponsible statement is made by the current administration stiff resistance should be put in force by the American public and other nations. It is for sure that this demented administration is going to do what they say. At this point it might just seem like a statement but when it happens it will be a disaster.
People lets act before its too late.
SAY NO FROM START TO THIS INSANITY.

Posted by: Jay | July 22, 2007 3:44 PM

America didn't start this war on terrorism. And Iraq is part of this war. We must remain there until the job is done. al-queda is in Pakistan's land building up strength. Pakistan says it cannot control this area. Well if they can't stop al-queda there, then we must, no matter what. First we'll ask Pakistan for permission, but if they won't allow it, we must do it anyways. We are at war and we are not the bad guys. If we stop going after these terrorists where ever they are, including Iraq Pakistan, then we have failed, and we will pay for it. God Bless America

Posted by: Tom | July 22, 2007 3:52 PM

I don't think any dictatorship is really our friend. I think Pakistan needs to choose between Ben Laden and the US. I think Ben Laden needs to know that there is no place in this world for him.

Posted by: Charles Martin | July 22, 2007 3:56 PM

When did Hairbrain Reid get the Lobotomy?

You sir, are the proud owner of the most UNPOPULAR Congress EVER!

Congratulations, now, STFU!

WHEN? When are we ever going to quit attacking ourselves for the Blunders made by the Iraqi's with THIER damn Country!

The Iraqi's have screwed everything up! Like children handed a loaded gun, they poited the barrel of Religious Holy War/ Intolerance/ Ignorance, right between their own idiotic eyes! Then, PULLED THE TRIGGER!!!!

Al-Sadr is a justifiable Dead Man! WAY more so than Saddam ever should have been!

The Shia's have proven themselves to be our worst nightmare! There is nothing we can do that will get them to really be on our side! They are tied to Iran!

We need to wake up and realize that duplicity is ALLOWED and ENCOURAGED in Islam! Mostly so for the Shia Sect due to their incessant Paranoia in being an outlawed, minority breakaway Sect! They have had to practice their Survival Lying for Centuries now!

Don't "Talk" about it, just HELP the Sunni's regain control of Iraq!

Iran CANNOT be allowed an un-impeded access to the Mediterranean!

Simple as that!

Posted by: RAT-The | July 22, 2007 3:58 PM

Bush administration told Pakistani government already " the US would bomb Pakistan back to the Stone Age". I think America would bomb any county who would not agree with them. The Germans were bad killing innocent people look at America what are they doing if one count Japan, Iraq, Vietnam, Cambodia, Afganistan ant more. The killing of innocent people increased more then holocaust.
So they are doing it, one could see what Bush administration is doing to countries in the world and killing innocent people all around and keep murdering innocent Children and Women.

General Pervez Musharraf in his autobiography 'In the Line of Fire' revealed a bombshell: US Assistant Secretary of State Richard Armitage warned him that if he did not cooperate in the war against terror, the US would bomb Pakistan back to the Stone Age. Musharraf says in the book, a collection of memoirs, that he had little choice after the September 11 terrorist attack on the United States but to abandon the Taliban - a group that was conceived, delivered, nurtured and financed by Pakistan's Inter-Service Intelligence, the country's secret service.
from "http://www.sundaytimes.lk/070715/Columns/issue.html"

Posted by: Hashmi | July 22, 2007 4:02 PM

Bush administration told Pakistani government already " the US would bomb Pakistan back to the Stone Age". I think America would bomb any county who would not agree with them. The Germans were bad killing innocent people look at America what are they doing if one count Japan, Iraq, Vietnam, Cambodia, Afganistan ant more. The killing of innocent people increased more then holocaust.
So they are doing it, one could see what Bush administration is doing to countries in the world and killing innocent people all around and keep murdering innocent Children and Women.

General Pervez Musharraf in his autobiography 'In the Line of Fire' revealed a bombshell: US Assistant Secretary of State Richard Armitage warned him that if he did not cooperate in the war against terror, the US would bomb Pakistan back to the Stone Age. Musharraf says in the book, a collection of memoirs, that he had little choice after the September 11 terrorist attack on the United States but to abandon the Taliban - a group that was conceived, delivered, nurtured and financed by Pakistan's Inter-Service Intelligence, the country's secret service.
from "http://www.sundaytimes.lk/070715/Columns/issue.html"

Posted by: Hashmi | July 22, 2007 4:02 PM

Not even Reid asks that the goal of "our" operations in Iraq are. Why not censure bush?? What a wimp.

Posted by: Wake up | July 22, 2007 4:08 PM

Instead of attacking Iraq where Saddam was highly effective putting down Al-Qaeda, we should have attacked Pakistan.
All the 9/11 terrorists passed thru here.
Taliban was created here.
Nuclear eBays originated here for N.Korea and Iran as well.
Why can't we have smart people running our country ?

Posted by: attack now | July 22, 2007 4:09 PM

I'm so glad there are so many SMART people replying to this news!

I agree with most of the comments so far, and I would just like to emphasize the point made in the article that the Iraq was is NOT about terrorism! When it comes down to it, there are many different theories as to WHY Bush invaded Iraq, and I don't believe we'll learn the REAL reason anytime soon. However, the "war" in Iraq has completely distracted us of the slightly more noble war on terror!

I do believe the US should do something about the al-Quaeda base in Pakistan, but honestly... Our military is spread thin across the world, our international support is constantly falling, and finally and most importantly:

WE CANNOT WIN A WAR BASED ON AN IDEA. The more we attack these terrorists, the more will arise. What goes around comes around. Every action has an equal and opposite reaction.

Posted by: Justin | July 22, 2007 4:15 PM

Musharaff is like the leader who mollifies his critics by looking busy when America comes by then puts his feet back up on the desk when we leave. Lip service is paid to fighting the war on terror, but that empty verbiage serves only to maintain the status quo and to keep foreign aid forthcoming.

Posted by: Nathan Morton | July 22, 2007 4:22 PM

no matter what happens.America is gonna make their people stupid like they did with THE WMD'S and then create a civil war in pakistan and destruction for their own soldiers..and well ofcourse convert the countries(pakistan) somewhat stabilized govt into a total chaos..

Posted by: desert rose | July 22, 2007 4:32 PM

Rose, stable for whom?

Posted by: Nathan Morton | July 22, 2007 4:39 PM

I can't understand why we are not going into Pakistan since we already know 9/11, 7/7 etc were planned there.

Posted by: Rob | July 22, 2007 4:43 PM

Taliban were created thanks to CIA and Pak. Intell. agencies to fight Soviets. And at that time CIA wanted to deal a blow to Soviet so it helped create army of people who were presented distorted version of Islam so they would become die hard fighters against Soviet. So students of Madressa's or Taliban came from different countries to join the Jihad preached by CIA and Pak. intell. to fight of Soviets. But after soviet collapse CIA and USA govt.'s interest in Afghanistan went away and Pakistan's govt. was left alone to deal with the mess in Afghanistan which was created with the full support of CIA. So blaming Pakistan that it supported Taliban is wrong because they just didn't have choice. They already had enemy to East which is 6 times bigger than them so they could not afford another conflict on their Afghanistan border. Brainwashing which was performed on Taliban unfortunately did not go away with the Soviet collapse. And during that time Taliban and Al Qaeda locked on USA. And Pakistan just had to maintain some kind of relations with Afghanistan's govt. which was controlled by Taliban because it is right next to Pakistan unlike us Pakistan is not located 10,000 miles away. And Pakistan had lot of internal/political troubles during that time. So we must realize full situation before making any opinions.

Posted by: sam | July 22, 2007 4:44 PM

If the Pakistan government is unable to capture Bin Laden, then the U.S. should have the right to find him and bring him to justice. I know there is concern for the Mushareff government, but it is in the national interest of the U.S. to take Al-Qada down no matter where they are in the world.

Posted by: eww2 | July 22, 2007 4:49 PM

This is a country where the American people do not know what is best for them, instead the corrupt government decides. Listen to the people! IMPEACH BUSH! Screw all who support this "war." The war could of been handled so differently, instead it is being handled by a ten year old who is mad at his old friend. I am moving out of this country ASAP - this is no longer America, we are no longer free.

Posted by: Nicholas B. | July 22, 2007 4:49 PM

Please consider these points:
1) We won the war with Iraq; in no time with relatively few American casualties.
2) We are not obligated to rebuild our defeated enemies. Germany/Japan are NOT required precedents.
3) Orthodox Muslims are required by their religion to be our enemies. There is no winning their hearts & minds.
4) If al-Queda is left alone, it will attack the United States repeatedly. Bill Clinton is sufficient proof of this.
5) A. Musharraf has been a reliable ally. B. He is not an American; he is a Pakistani politician. Both things are true.

The question is: If, given time, will Musharraf do the job? He has had about five years to do it thus far. In fact, he has done some things; very few in the FATA area.

The one thing that Americans can know for certain in all this is: the Democratics will NOT do the job.

Posted by: Larry B | July 22, 2007 4:49 PM

Musharraf depends on the islamists to prop him up in power, put pressure on Afghanistan and India and beat up on the pro-democratic parties and justify his position as the last man standing up to them.

Look at the interview with Hamid Gul (ex-head of the ISI) and you can see that there is NO WAY he, the army and the ISI are going to do more than provide lip service.

In the meantime, he will happily take 2 billion from us to mould the islamists to stop bothering HIM. I can't believe we are offering him money AND doing his dirty work.

If he cannot control his people and territory, that territory ought to be severed from the rest of Pakistan and given to someone whoever will take the responsibility, not just our money and our soldier's lives.

Posted by: candy from a kid | July 22, 2007 4:52 PM

How about we just stay home and mind our own business. If they launch another attack against us, we go in and destroy their country and then go home. If we do this several times maybe they will get tired of being destroyed and leave us alone.

Posted by: Grandpa | July 22, 2007 5:12 PM

With friends like Pakistan, who needs enemies.

Posted by: James | July 22, 2007 5:13 PM

Yes Americans are Americans. First they invade to bomb us to the stone age, of course deny the millions of innocent children, women, and men that would die. Now they want to kill us again after we sacrificed everything for those idiots. Americans are fascist but really they are just americans

Posted by: Wutever | July 22, 2007 5:22 PM

Yes Americans are Americans. First they invade to bomb us to the stone age, of course deny the millions of innocent children, women, and men that would die. Now they want to kill us again after we sacrificed everything for those idiots. Americans are fascist but really they are just americans

Posted by: Wutever | July 22, 2007 5:22 PM

Its time to look for another serch dog to look for UBL and gang,Mushraf must leave now his presence is creating more blood shed in Pakistan.In past all civillion governments in Pakistan arrested top terrorists in Pakistan and handed over to USA without getting millions of dollars.Any civillion government in pakistan will be as active against Al Qada as Mushraf has been in since 9/11/01.
Make Friendship with People of Pakistan not with one individule,Pushtoon Tribe in Afghanistan and Pakistan has been paying price since 1979.Who is Taliban and Al Qada
any one with a truban and long beard you got every other person look a like.Lot of childerns and womens have been killd by Nato and USA bombing since 2002 and no end in sight

Posted by: Karamat | July 22, 2007 5:23 PM

Americans are the cruelest human beings in the world, wow you can destroy a 3rd world country...good job...you give us nothing but pain...money...you mean the money that you give the dictator so he can kill us...nice

Posted by: Wutever | July 22, 2007 5:28 PM

Nicholas B. good riddance.

Sam, yes covert aid and weapons were distributed through ideological channels of political Islam to unite disparate peoples under a common ideology and stave off the Soviet threat in the Mid-East theatre during the '70s and '80s.

However, our alliances with the newly formed Muslim Brotherhood and Mujahadeen were put to rest following the defeat of the U.S.S.R.. That being said, we did, in fact, create a Frankenstein-type monster through blowback, or unintended consequences of foreign policy. Namely, that these religious zealots, or some unwieldy faction thereof, proceeded on, armed with weapons, cash and ideology, to overthrow our Sha in Iran. In an ironic turn of events, this single regime has been our greatest foil in the modern war on Islamic terrorism (burgeoning in earnest since 1979).

That we are facing ghosts of past wars - allies mutated and turned against us no less - is a foundation for dismissing neither an Iraqi invasion nor an Afghani invasion nor a Paki invasion nor any other invasion of countries that harbor terrorists.

Posted by: Nathan Morton | July 22, 2007 5:29 PM

There is a reason that Pakistan does not control that part of their country hiding bin Laden. It is basically impossible for any outside force to do so. Those that live there would have all the advantage and for us to think we could step in and control the area or even find bin Laden is sheer folly. We will get him only by luck or by an extreme act of treason by someone in his organization. If we undermine Musharraf we will place the country and all their nuclear capability in the hands of Islamist terrorists. We should be careful what we wish for.

Posted by: AZ coyote | July 22, 2007 5:29 PM

The terrorists ONLY understand FORCE. To not fight back would be disastrous for America. And Iraq IS part of the war on terror, no matter what anyone says. If we pull out of Iraq, we will just look weak again like we did in Somalia. And the terrorists love the Liberals in America. They cheered when Democrats won the house and senate, and they (terrorists) will cheer again if a Democrat wins the presidency in 2008. America must continue to fight, because if we don't, the terrorists will have already won.

Posted by: Tom | July 22, 2007 5:32 PM

George Washington warned his country not to get entangled in foreign conflicts - I guess he knew a few things.

The US Armed Forces were created to PROTECT the United States and it's borders, let's bring them home to do their job.

Seal the borders and expell ALL those foreigners that came here illegally. those that do it LEGALLY are welcome to stay and become Americans.

Posted by: GrizzlyGeek | July 22, 2007 5:36 PM

Innocent people always die in war. The difference between America and the terrorists is that America doesn't intentionally kill civilians!

Posted by: Tom | July 22, 2007 5:36 PM

Go to war, but dont it the way you have done it in Iraq. Use your air power and ground intelligence, and make precise targets strike terrorist hideout inside Pakistan. This will have minimum casulties on the American side. If you use your Army, then its difficult to control the casulties like in Iraq. Start preparing this, and see how Musharraf reacts. He will come into a reaction mode and will be doing much more than what he is doing now. Pressurize the pakistani govt. and show them how serious you guys are and that you have much time. Already lots of years have passed. Those people have to be captured or killed at any cost.

Posted by: dowarindirect | July 22, 2007 5:41 PM

Pakistan were all imperial nations go to die

Posted by: Rob | July 22, 2007 5:41 PM

Ignorance is common, you can't really get mad at it anymore. But there's few things more annoying than armchair blow-hards who do nothing but repeat tired old mantras. It's simple, really.. impeach Bush, pull everyone out of Iraq and Afghanistan, and put all that money into social welfare and dance festivals. No solutions to the actual problems, mind you... you won't hear any of that. And when Iraq becomes Little Iran, and Afghanistan goes back to being a Taliban-run walking-bomb-factory taking half of Pakistan with them, they'll simply say "It's all Bush's fault, blame him." When your SUV with the MoveOn.org bumper stickers starts taking $120 to fill the tank each week, "It's Bush's fault, blame him." When the unhindered training camps produce the brainwashed bomber that spreads radioactive dust across Manhattan or DC, you want to bet that putz Feingold won't be stepping up to say "My bad, maybe we should have let the CIA turn the lights on and off all night to TORTURE those captives... we might have gotten some good intel"?

Bush is a fool. Likewise, if Kerry or Gore had gotten into office, they'd still be trying to negotiate with the Taliban for Bin Laden's arrest. The question is, are you going to continue to advocate the decisions that make tacticians wince, knowing when it turns to ash you can blame it on someone else? Or are we as a country going to stop playing politics, put down our mochachinos and look at the reality of the situation?

The America I've been hearing lately isn't ready to have the US OR the Pakistani military take the steps necessary to deal with the tribal regions, the kinds of steps you don't want to see on CNN. But we'll still play monday-morning quarterback when the terror network goes on living.

Posted by: Kevin | July 22, 2007 5:42 PM

Oh what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive. The real question is who is the spider, and who is the prey? Let us pray.

Posted by: Clark | July 22, 2007 5:43 PM

The biggest problem with Pakistan is its 'India obsession'. It is a country in which power has either been in the hands of the military or in the hands of feudal landlords. Neither of these have the interests of the public in mind, and to distract the public from questioning them about it, they've always created a 'fear of India'. Starting from Gen. Zia's time, the Islamic element was introduced into the military, and that made the mullah's more powerful. The implicit understanding between the military and the theocracy is 'you let us hold power, and we will let you run madarasas, as long as you do not speak against us'. The military's support for increasing the madrasas and Taliban are good examples of this policy.

Right now Pakistan is feeling two pressures. First is an indirect one from the US to fight against the Islamic radicals, especially al-Qaeda. Second is an indirect one as they see India, who they are obsessed with, on the fast path to becoming an economic and military superpower. The latter is very hard for Pakistan to take, since at the time of partition the economic situation between the two countries was similar.

Pakistan is a major country, with a population of close to 130 million, and it could well have been on the road to becoming an economic power, expect for the meddling of the military and the mullahs - that is the real tragedy of Pakistan.

Given the size of Pakistan, it is not advisable to have an overt military strategy, since this is only likely to make the mullahs mad, and increasing number of calls to the faithful to join in further jihad. A good approach would be to covertly ask the Indians to help, and Musharraf to stay out of it. Indians too are quite tired of these terrorists, and would be glad to help in this 'house-cleaning' in Pakistan's frontier regions, which helps them as well.

The US could potentially ask China as well, but it's not likely to get any help. The reason is that Islamic terrorists in that region are a thorn in the side of both the US and India - and given the global competition - China would like the thorn to remain. This is why it has helped Pakistan with nuclear technology.

Posted by: politics junkie | July 22, 2007 5:44 PM

Coyote, it's more foolish to put our security interests in others' hands than to risk offending the 'sensibilities' of a dictator and his ineffective regime. If you want something done right...

Am I right? I don't feel like putting America's future in the hands of Musharraf's Pakistan. It is unwise to hope that our troubles will somehow be magically sorted out when precedence clearly shows that nonintervention has allowed terror camps to strengthen, emboldening our enemies.

We are dealing with some coy bastards and some awfully petty, officious criminals in this effort. Let's not lose sight of the enemy and what he stands for. Musharaff's Pakistan is, if nothing else, an enabler of our adversaries, which makes him, at the very least, a liability to our interests. We cannot trust this man in explicit terms, much less implicitly - i.e., by his word.

We must engage in this foxhunt with or without his consent.

Posted by: Nathan Morton | July 22, 2007 5:47 PM

Mind our own business?
Let them attack again, then do something?
hmmm who is going to volunteer to be attacked?
Wasn't the world trade center part of the USA and therefor are we not already minding our own business?
Pull out of Iraq and you will see Jihad embolden beyond belief. The soldiers and citizens that have died should never be brought to naught. No we don't have to rebuild the countries that we get tangled up with, but if we start some thing this costly we need to finish it at least privent outside medaling long enough for them to stabaliz there own country.
The world should see the importance here and help. If you want out of Iraq quick then send in the resources to get it done.
Then leave.

Posted by: greg | July 22, 2007 5:51 PM

The issue is about stability, but at what cost? We want a regime in power that will not attack us. That's all we ask.


Posted by: Nathan Morton | July 22, 2007 5:59 PM

Will just capturing Bin Laden stop these terrorist organisations? This is an idealogy, and idealogies do not die.

I suggest look at where the attack is coming from, bomb that country that has harbored or sponsored them back to 1000 BC i mean bombing them to the real stone age, where they'll not recognise a bullet and pullout. Forget about rebuilding.

Every government will then take serious measures to make sure these terrorist organisations do not train or shelter in their country as they stand to loose. Today America seem to be in the forefront trying to take steps in fighting this war on terror, so it's called America's war on terror and the other countries are allies. Tomorrow it may not be America that will be attacked, it might be Russia, or china or Europe or even Africa. The trend might change if all countries do not join hands with the US to fight this war. Though it'll be long and costly, no doubt, but it'll be better than doing nothing.

Fighting together doesn't only mean forming an army of nationalities. It means each country taking serious steps to ensuring that their territories are not used as bases for attacks or training, maybe they might be forced to go to mars to training and attack from there.

Posted by: Junior | July 22, 2007 6:08 PM

Whatever the comments and opinions aren't we Americans forgetting one thing.

Pakistan has nuclear weapons.
Is it ever gonna be possible to go in with out the approval of Pakistan if the FATA is officially inside the Pakistan territory?

Posted by: Jay | July 22, 2007 6:09 PM

Will just capturing Bin Laden stop these terrorist organisations? This is an idealogy, and idealogies do not die.

I suggest we look at where the attack is coming from, bomb that country that has harbored or sponsored them back to 1000 BC i mean bombing them to the real stone age, where they'll not recognise a bullet and pullout. Forget about rebuilding.

Every government will then take serious measures to making sure these terrorist organisations do not train or shelter in their country as they stand to bear the cost. Today America seem to be in the forefront trying to take steps in fighting this war on terror, so it's called America's war on terror and the other countries are acting as if they're doing the US a favour. Tomorrow it may not be America that will be attacked, it might be Russia, or china or Europe or even Africa. The trend might change if all countries do not join hands with the US to fight this war. Though it'll be long and costly, no doubt, but it'll be better than doing nothing.

Fighting together doesn't only mean forming an army of nationalities. It means each country taking serious steps to ensuring that their territories are not used as bases for attacks or training, maybe they might be forced to go to mars to training and attack from there.

Posted by: Junior | July 22, 2007 6:12 PM

The environmentalists say you cannot put a price on conservation. Inasmuch as there cannot be a healthy environment for us to protect without national security - which is to say, none at all - we therefore cannot put a price on stable regimes who will murder neither us nor our compatriots. Yet, there is a cost/benefit calculation in every measure we take.

It's a bad idea to waste all of our money on bombs when infrastructure could be more helpful. Conversely, it's unsafe and unwise to restrict defense outlays, to have commensurately lax geopolitical stratagem and save our monies for domestic social programs when knowingly and willfully doing so would inevitably lead to our own extinction.

Posted by: Nathan Morton | July 22, 2007 6:13 PM

Pakistani Military and ISI are the mother of all islamic terrorism in the world.
One should ask question who is helping Taliban resurgence inspite of the fact , all the major powers in the world (USA,RUSSIA, CHINA, EU) and lesser power like India are its enemies. Its none other than Pakistani Army(ISI) who has been involved in providing medical facility to OSAMA and its cronies.
US play pakistan's game and beat them by covert method. If they rely on the word of Mussharaf and military establishment then they are not going to get any success. remember Pakis have used US transport aircraft for supplying nuclear reactor to Korea.

Posted by: Sama | July 22, 2007 6:22 PM

A Pakistani' View:

Frances Townsend: What a great idea to supply and inject life in lament cause of OBL and Al-Qaeda. Whenever, Al-Qaeda and fanatics get touchy and short of ideas -- Our American friends give them new reasons to survive -- Iraq invasion, Beruit Bombing. Now, Pakistan Bombing.

FATA -- Read English history before suggesting that Musharraf has not done enough in the region.

Hamid Gul (ex- DG ISI) - father of Afghan-Pak islamic fanatics is a natural critic of Mush.

Currently, vast majority of Pakistan is with Musharraf and Pakistan Army against fundamentalist. Fanatics are suicide bombing Army men/Cops after Lal Masjid Saga -- With every bombing, general opinion is hardening against fanatics.

You bomb "Pakistan" in the name of War on Terror and BET ON IT, you and Pakistan will loose war on Terror.

Support Musharraf to neutralize Pakistan' from seventeen years of radicalization by Gen. Zia (His CIA and Saudi Prince Turki financial and training support).

Being a Pakistani, I pray for Musharraf' life and his success against the fanatics.

Long Live Pakistan and United Stated of America.

Posted by: Asghar Abbas | July 22, 2007 6:29 PM

American military power has brought poor results in Iraq and Afghanistan. Now these cowboys want to bomb Pakistan??

Without Pakistan's cooperation, the US cannot win in the region. Yet Americans talk about bombing the country.

Posted by: Aamir Ali | July 22, 2007 6:29 PM

polotics junkie has the most correct assesment of the situation in pakistan and how to pressurise it.

Posted by: tsushil | July 22, 2007 6:33 PM

Junior made a solid point in that we are putting the cart of rebuilding before the horse of victory. And someone else also mentioned that rebuilding Europe & Japan after WWII is not necessarily an appropriate model or precedent, as it were, for our efforts in the Mid-East.

We should be aware, in all of this, that the terror strikes - particularly of 9/11 - were an upwelling of bloodshed from within our own ranks (Saudi immigrants). That extra-national efforts to defeat terrorism domestically are only going to be as effective as the deterrence signaled by our show of force abroad.

There was another point made about George Washington's (GW's) isolationism and that, I think, is well placed. However, to the extent we allow people from non-European, esp. non-northwest-European descent to live and work in our country, we become entangled in a multilateralism of sorts.

If we really want to solve our problems and solve them good, we will treat all the separatists during this struggle - i.e., Muslims and Mid-Eastern/Arabian peoples - in a separate but equal fashion insofar as the actions of one represent the actions of all. If these communities across the globe will not produce the criminals among them, then we will punish them all the same.

On the other hand, these can assimilate and we will deal with them individually, via traditional justice, in the same manner we deal with our own [criminals]. It's really their choice, but harboring terrorists and screaming bloody murder for 'interference' is a side-show and a bloody insult to our intelligence, not to mention our good character.

Posted by: Nathan Morton | July 22, 2007 6:36 PM

Time to go back to barracks

We were all thick and thin in Afghan war and in full charge of it as executive of this war. The entire country was mobilised to fight this war (jihad) in Afghanistan. At the end; those battle fields were still warm that an act of terrorism of 9/11 took place in United States. The entire mechanism of our Jihadis was held responsible for this act of crime and was reprimanded by United States to face the dire consequences. At the international scene; the table was turned against us. President Pervez Musharraf being at the helm of affairs was left with no choice but to denounce the crime and go with the verdict of international community. He very sheepishly took his famous U-Turn and joined the forces on 'war against terrorism'; i.e. practically alienating and distancing from Jihadis forces and virtually declaring a war against ...our own people. Musharraf had also given an undertaking to ensure that Jihadis activities are ceased in the training camps in tribal area.

This decision was taken by President in haste and in 'state of fear' without properly weighing the situation on ground and with out taking the concerned parties in confidence; after this Pakistan stood as a foe for the Jihadis groups. But for the time being it did...avert the immediate danger of war and we managed to escape the atrocious attack of US cruise missiles landing in Pakistan.

Six years on but there has been no signs of any known retrogression in the state of heightened vengeance of Jihadis. No scheme proved to work off and humble the disgruntled Jihadis or to rehabilitate them in civil society. Rather it has resulted in escalation of anarchy and mayhem in Pakistan. Jihadis kept on taking new shapes like AL-Qaeda and many other group of extremism have since formed. These Jihadis forces have grown so strong that they were able to challenge, very vehemently, the writ of Pakistan government right in the capital city- Islamabad.( it was so evident in recent Red Mosque fiasco).

After the Red Mosque fiasco; we are yet again being blamed for all the act of terrorism in the world. NATO as well as U S forces are bent to strike the Jihadis targets inside Pakistan to eliminate the so called training camps of terrorism and probably no one can stop them. This is a colossal failure of Musharraf policies and war is once again looming on our heads. Many other significant developments in the country are also writing some new messages on our streets walls.

Where as this nation has to say good bye to the extremism; but probably time has come where General Musharraf has to look for his exit now; His another five years as President may not bring any relief or restore the lost pride of this nation. He should, in the greater interest of Pakistan, quit (himself) gracefully; so should do the Pak Army and go back to their barracks.

Long Live Pakistan

Posted by: A Khokar | July 22, 2007 6:53 PM

Nathan Morton I did not mean to imply that we should put our security interests in Musharraf's hands. We need to do what is in the best interest of our country. I would ask, where in the vast wilderness of that part of Pakistan is bin Laden? Where are these camps that are supporting al Queda? Until we know, we need to not involve ourselves in another great military adventure with no end like Iraq. When we do know we should strike without mercy and apologize to Musharraf later.

There is considerable evidence that some of the best intelligence we have received regarding our terrorist enemies has been with the assistance and cooperation of the Musharraf government. I would call that a valuable relationship. Even if he doesn't always have our best interests in mind, it might be because he has a very tricky political tightrope to walk. Since we can't always be sure whether he is really a friend or an enemy we might want to follow that old piece of advice that tells us to hold our friends close and our enemies closer.

As far as this regime being ineffective, it appears to me that they have provided us with more tangible results than the pathetic Iraqi government.

Posted by: AZ coyote | July 22, 2007 7:00 PM

NATO strikes are eminents
At the end of war in Afghanistan against Soviet Union; US abandonment of Afghan Mujahideen warriors and betrayal by United States can be seen as a great tragedy and is counted as US folly in recent war history; Most of these resilient Afghan warriors; we now find them; are turned into Islamist monsters, as... terrorists. They have their direct links with Taliban and are carrying out full scale subversive activities under the known title of...AL-Qaeda. Al-Qaeda is US own created night mare which has raised arms in reprisal against US to challenge its dominance in the Middle East. The Al-Qaeda ideology of vengeance is turning into a long tussle and a show down to chase a victory in south East Asia between the two claimants (namely US and Al-Qaeda) for their supremacy is resulting in shattering the peace of the entire World.
Above is the situation depicted by our media; but we need to dig deep; evaluate the situation by keeping our ears closer to the ground...and weigh from perspective of realism of this case. The so called betrayal by US and their abandonment of Mujahideen was not with out purpose. In the light of the revulsive, rebellious nature and expected rage full reaction from Mujahideen (Later they joined Taliban creed and Al-Qaeda). Neocons of United States evolved a special, 'New American Century Policy', to contemplate US hegemonic ambitions of 'American Empire' dream' through a scheme of fallacy and deception specially in the areas around Middle East. Basing on the above said nature of Taliban and Al-Qaeda; they planned to use Al-Qaeda as an agitating tool to act and create anarchy and mayhem in the areas of targets. This whimsical tactics, where it created an air of fear and terror in societies, it also helped prepare (soften up) the ground in enemy area to invite and justify US subsequent moves of aggression against them.
But short sightedness of Al-Qaeda and their supporters mired in the illusion of their vengeance fell prey to this bate and since then; all such (pre-emptive) moves of Al-Qaeda have very conveniently been falling right in place in favor of US; may it be, just a video tape of Osama bin Laden run by Al-Jazeera in the past before US midterm elections, or a message, or an ambush or a raid attack prior to any US moves; Al-Qaeda moves have always been right on the dot and in accordance with the demand of the situation. Very rightly all this has in turn, been supportive of US argument given in favor of 'Global war on terror' and justifying their killings. Al-Qaeda has never ever been seen, getting late on it. Never ever!

Matter of the fact is that George W Bush and his Neocons are in love with Al-Qaeda. They are pinning all their hopes on Al Qaeda to act for them. Al Qaeda is always there for their rescue. Tactics of blaming every thing on Al-Qaeda happens to be a lynch pin of Neocons...dream policy. Al Qaeda is made up as omnipotent force, an invisible enemy, a servitude of US, designed to present itself as 'fore runners' to act as enemy for subsequent attack by US.
A glaring example of declaring their presence of bases in tribal belt of Pakistan on Afghan- Pakistan border (the tribal belt is virtually in control of Taliban); where US and NATO forces want to advance for onward 'planned onslaught' to...Islamabad. It is observed that soon after the Red Mosque fiasco in Islamabad; the quick calculated response of Al-Qaeda vengeance in this regard is worth evaluating. The positive and intriguing ploy like confirmation of their presence in Red Mosque ( which was earlier being denied by Pakistan Government) followed by chaos and turmoil all along the tribal belt and suicidal killings in repercussion is proving to be the positive agitating factor which are required to invite and qualify US/ NATO advances into Pakistan. All the preparations are very much there and situation is tense and just ripe. Cross border strikes / attacks by NATO forces are eminent...any time.
Al-Qaeda is the wings of US to help...take the flights; and perch or land any where, where ever they want. A friend in need is a friend indeed! Al-Qaeda is a...friend in deed; having a long lasting friendship accord with US...of course! They can certainly rescue US in future also!
--------------------------------
Love for all, Hatred for none

Posted by: A Khokar | July 22, 2007 7:12 PM

NATO strikes are eminent

At the end of war in Afghanistan against Soviet Union; US abandonment of Afghan Mujahideen warriors and betrayal by United States can be seen as a great tragedy and is counted as US folly in recent war history; Most of these resilient Afghan warriors; we now find them; are turned into Islamist monsters, as... terrorists. They have their direct links with Taliban and are carrying out full scale subversive activities under the known title of...AL-Qaeda. Al-Qaeda is US own created night mare which has raised arms in reprisal against US to challenge its dominance in the Middle East. The Al-Qaeda ideology of vengeance is turning into a long tussle and a show down to chase a victory in south East Asia between the two claimants (namely US and Al-Qaeda) for their supremacy is resulting in shattering the peace of the entire World.

Above is the situation depicted by our media; but we need to dig deep; evaluate the situation by keeping our ears closer to the ground...and weigh from perspective of realism of this case. The so called betrayal by US and their abandonment of Mujahideen was not with out purpose. In the light of the revulsive, rebellious nature and expected rage full reaction from Mujahideen (Later they joined Taliban creed and Al-Qaeda). Neocons of United States evolved a special, 'New American Century Policy', to contemplate US hegemonic ambitions of 'American Empire' dream' through a scheme of fallacy and deception specially in the areas around Middle East. Basing on the above said nature of Taliban and Al-Qaeda; they planned to use Al-Qaeda as an agitating tool to act and create anarchy and mayhem in the areas of targets. This whimsical tactics, where it created an air of fear and terror in societies, it also helped prepare (soften up) the ground in enemy area to invite and justify US subsequent moves of aggression against them.

But short sightedness of Al-Qaeda and their supporters mired in the illusion of their vengeance fell prey to this bate and since then; all such (pre-emptive) moves of Al-Qaeda have very conveniently been falling right in place in favor of US; may it be, just a video tape of Osama bin Laden run by Al-Jazeera in the past before US midterm elections, or a message, or an ambush or a raid attack prior to any US moves; Al-Qaeda moves have always been right on the dot and in accordance with the demand of the situation. Very rightly all this has in turn, been supportive of US argument given in favor of 'Global war on terror' and justifying their killings. Al-Qaeda has never ever been seen, getting late on it. Never ever!

Matter of the fact is that George W Bush and his Neocons are in love with Al-Qaeda. They are pinning all their hopes on Al Qaeda to act for them. Al Qaeda is always there for their rescue. Tactics of blaming every thing on Al-Qaeda happens to be a lynch pin of Neocons...dream policy. Al Qaeda is made up as omnipotent force, an invisible enemy, a servitude of US, designed to present itself as 'fore runners' to act as enemy for subsequent attack by US.
A glaring example of declaring their presence of bases in tribal belt of Pakistan on Afghan- Pakistan border (the tribal belt is virtually in control of Taliban); where US and NATO forces want to advance for onward 'planned onslaught' to...Islamabad. It is observed that soon after the Red Mosque fiasco in Islamabad; the quick calculated response of Al-Qaeda vengeance in this regard is worth evaluating. The positive and intriguing ploy like confirmation of their presence in Red Mosque ( which was earlier being denied by Pakistan Government) followed by chaos and turmoil all along the tribal belt and suicidal killings in repercussion is proving to be the positive agitating factor which are required to invite and qualify US/ NATO advances into Pakistan. All the preparations are very much there and situation is tense and just ripe. Cross border strikes / attacks by NATO forces are eminent...any time.
Al-Qaeda is the wings of US to help...take the flights; and perch or land any where, where ever they want. A friend in need is a friend indeed! Al-Qaeda is a...friend in deed; having a long lasting friendship accord with US...of course! They can certainly rescue US in future also!
--------------------------------
Love for all, Hatred for none

Posted by: Anonymous | July 22, 2007 7:13 PM

NATO strikes are eminent

At the end of war in Afghanistan against Soviet Union; US abandonment of Afghan Mujahideen warriors and betrayal by United States can be seen as a great tragedy and is counted as US folly in recent war history; Most of these resilient Afghan warriors; we now find them; are turned into Islamist monsters, as... terrorists. They have their direct links with Taliban and are carrying out full scale subversive activities under the known title of...AL-Qaeda. Al-Qaeda is US own created night mare which has raised arms in reprisal against US to challenge its dominance in the Middle East. The Al-Qaeda ideology of vengeance is turning into a long tussle and a show down to chase a victory in south East Asia between the two claimants (namely US and Al-Qaeda) for their supremacy is resulting in shattering the peace of the entire World.

Above is the situation depicted by our media; but we need to dig deep; evaluate the situation by keeping our ears closer to the ground...and weigh from perspective of realism of this case. The so called betrayal by US and their abandonment of Mujahideen was not with out purpose. In the light of the revulsive, rebellious nature and expected rage full reaction from Mujahideen (Later they joined Taliban creed and Al-Qaeda). Neocons of United States evolved a special, 'New American Century Policy', to contemplate US hegemonic ambitions of 'American Empire' dream' through a scheme of fallacy and deception specially in the areas around Middle East. Basing on the above said nature of Taliban and Al-Qaeda; they planned to use Al-Qaeda as an agitating tool to act and create anarchy and mayhem in the areas of targets. This whimsical tactics, where it created an air of fear and terror in societies, it also helped prepare (soften up) the ground in enemy area to invite and justify US subsequent moves of aggression against them.

But short sightedness of Al-Qaeda and their supporters mired in the illusion of their vengeance fell prey to this bate and since then; all such (pre-emptive) moves of Al-Qaeda have very conveniently been falling right in place in favor of US; may it be, just a video tape of Osama bin Laden run by Al-Jazeera in the past before US midterm elections, or a message, or an ambush or a raid attack prior to any US moves; Al-Qaeda moves have always been right on the dot and in accordance with the demand of the situation. Very rightly all this has in turn, been supportive of US argument given in favor of 'Global war on terror' and justifying their killings. Al-Qaeda has never ever been seen, getting late on it. Never ever!

Matter of the fact is that George W Bush and his Neocons are in love with Al-Qaeda. They are pinning all their hopes on Al Qaeda to act for them. Al Qaeda is always there for their rescue. Tactics of blaming every thing on Al-Qaeda happens to be a lynch pin of Neocons...dream policy. Al Qaeda is made up as omnipotent force, an invisible enemy, a servitude of US, designed to present itself as 'fore runners' to act as enemy for subsequent attack by US.

A glaring example of declaring their presence of bases in tribal belt of Pakistan on Afghan- Pakistan border (the tribal belt is virtually in control of Taliban); where US and NATO forces want to advance for onward 'planned onslaught' to...Islamabad. It is observed that soon after the Red Mosque fiasco in Islamabad; the quick calculated response of Al-Qaeda vengeance in this regard is worth evaluating. The positive and intriguing ploy like confirmation of their presence in Red Mosque ( which was earlier being denied by Pakistan Government) followed by chaos and turmoil all along the tribal belt and suicidal killings in repercussion is proving to be the positive agitating factor which are required to invite and qualify US/ NATO advances into Pakistan. All the preparations are very much there and situation is tense and just ripe. Cross border strikes / attacks by NATO forces are eminent...any time.

Al-Qaeda is the wings of US to help...take the flights; and perch or land any where, where ever they want. A friend in need is a friend indeed! Al-Qaeda is a...friend in deed; having a long lasting friendship accord with US...of course! They can certainly rescue US in future also!
--------------------------------
Love for all, Hatred for none

Posted by: A Khokar | July 22, 2007 7:16 PM

JUstin stated that every action has yet another action, or what goes around comes around.

Well Justin in case you have not been paying attention it has come around.
The heck with Iraq we should have stayed put in Afganistan and Pakistan until we were sure that Al-Qaeda was rendered impotent. George's attention span is that of a fruit fly so he bored of that very quickly and took off in another direction for a multitude of reasons that we will not go into here.
Bottom line, come into line Pakistan and actively and realisticly help us in doing away with the provobial bad guys NOW! or else deal with civilian deaths and whatever disaster befalls you all when we start bombing anything and everything to kill this misbegot, and his followers.
If you threaten us with nucular retalliation then understand also that this nation has the same option.

Posted by: kandjc@comcast.net | July 22, 2007 7:19 PM

JUstin stated that every action has yet another action, or what goes around comes around.

Well Justin in case you have not been paying attention it has come around.
The heck with Iraq we should have stayed put in Afganistan and Pakistan until we were sure that Al-Qaeda was rendered impotent. George's attention span is that of a fruit fly so he bored of that very quickly and took off in another direction for a multitude of reasons that we will not go into here.
Bottom line, come into line Pakistan and actively and realisticly help us in doing away with the provobial bad guys NOW! or else deal with civilian deaths and whatever disaster befalls you all when we start bombing anything and everything to kill this misbegot, and his followers.
If you threaten us with nucular retalliation then understand also that this nation has the same option.

Posted by: kandjc@comcast.net | July 22, 2007 7:19 PM

Hunt them down like the dogs they are. Root out Al-Qaeda from the face of this earth. They are ignorant hateful fascists, and we cannot stand for any of their influence on any culture whether it is in Pakistan or here on American soil. We all know the intent of Al-Qaeda, so I hope Pakistan can stand up for justice. It is a disgrace to all Pakistanis if they let Al-Qaeda remain thriving in their country.

Posted by: Baker | July 22, 2007 7:21 PM

Have to say haven't seen such a vast collection of myopics in ages. Pakistan was created to stop the carnage between the Hindus and Muslims. Pakistan is devoutly Muslim and a seat of loathing for things western. The war on terror is - well - misnamed now it should be called the war on Islam and so it should be. these folks wish to destroy our society to preserve theirs. it is now up to who has the most backbone about the issue.

Posted by: Max | July 22, 2007 7:22 PM

Dear Sir,
Owing to some technical fault above submission of comments;'NATO strikes are eminent'was transmitted in triplicate. Please accept my apologies for any inconvenience it may have caused.
Many thanks
A Khokar-UK

Posted by: A Khokar | July 22, 2007 7:25 PM

You can't just bomb another country if you feel like there is terrorists there (hint: we were pretty sure there were weapons of mass destructions in Iraq), if you take so much pride in your most technologically advanced military you might as well make use of it rather than dropping bombs in an area. Even if you do kill the targets intended, for every innocent civilian you kill, there will be more hatred towards your country that will as a consequence create more Osamas. Don't forget Pakistan helped America, bombing the same country would be the dumbest thing to do. (BTW before you make any assumptions this is coming from an Indian born)

Posted by: Kido | July 22, 2007 7:33 PM

The Iraqi effort has been pathetic due to the Iranian/Syrian influences there, which have propped up terror factions and thwarted our efforts to stabilize the region. We are indeed taking an indirect route in pursuing bad guys deep in tribal regions of northwest Pakistan (among other places).

If you ask me, the most tangible plan to stop terror would be to quarantine every Muslim in Europe and America, then demand fealty or drive them out. Of course, our subjects would ultimately be assigned a second-class citizen status (i.e., restricted freedom, nearly constant surveillance) if they chose to remain due to the phenomenon of 'sleeper cells'.

If these people are so intent on living among us, then they will either assimilate and accept our way of life (on the aforementioned conditions) or get the &^*^ out!

Posted by: Nathan Morton | July 22, 2007 7:53 PM

Khokar your delusions of grandeur are misplaced. Americans are very well-to-do citizens of the globe, on the whole. We have families to enjoy and business to attend to. Terrorists, political or otherwise, are a thorn in our side and the sooner we stomp them into the ground, the sooner we can get on with our lives.

Posted by: Nathan Morton | July 22, 2007 8:09 PM

Well, that's a good idea Nathan, but that will put so many good people that are not Americans at risk. A country's growth is not only dependent on it's citizens, alot of contributions are done by non Americans who have either naturalized or have some form of right to stay in the US.

I also think alot of people should be under surveillance. Especially in Europe where 'such cells' are likely to exist. The war on terror should be on every front, but care should be taken not to harm the economy, or upset the educational benefits derived.

Posted by: Junior | July 22, 2007 8:09 PM

"Hunt them down like the dogs they are. Root out Al-Qaeda from the face of this earth."

We aren't powerful enough to do that, Baker. Even if it were desirable, it would be folly, because we couldn't do it without killing so many innocents that we would become mankind's enemy.

We are bogged down in two wars right now. Adding a third war is not the course of wisdom. Osama would like nothing better.

Posted by: Former Republican | July 22, 2007 9:13 PM

American Military Casualties Estimates in Iraq

In Combat American Deaths
Since war began (3/19/03):3632
Since "Mission Accomplished" (5/1/03) (the list):3493
Since Capture of Saddam (12/13/03): 3171
Since Handover (6/29/04): 2773
Since Election (1/31/05): 2195

American Wounded Official Estimated Total Wounded: 26806

Plus thousands of innocent civilians.

911 Deaths: 3000

In whatever angle it is seen it is difficult to support continuation of the present war or starting a new war in Pakistan. The more we try to kill the suspected terrorists and in the process kill innocent civilians the more is the risk of either of them turning extremists and creating a new generation of terrorists. Instead it is better to continue supporting the local governments to try and control terrorists. Another option is to secure the border much more and install a strict scrutiny of all the people traveling at airports, and other transportation ports.

A decision to go on a full fledge war on another sovereign nation and a N nation should have the majority backing of the citizens of our country and the backing of other countries instead of a 3-4 people making such decisions.

When a decision of waging a war is made against a N nation emotions can run so high that a mushroom cloud might become inevitable for the attacked country. This cannot be risked and we cannot think that we can threaten by saying we possess N weapons as well.

So without Pakistans approval it is not possible for a direct assault on FATA. Even it is approved by Pakistan the risk of birth of new generation of terrorists.

Posted by: Jay | July 22, 2007 9:20 PM

Let's not forget that U.S. supported the military and the religious fight in Afghanistan and PAkistan morally, militarily and fianancially during the Russian invasion of Afghanistan so when we talk about religious fundamentalism having strength, we should start with putting the blame squarely on U.S., just like we supported Saddam Hussain and Osama bin ladin so don't go pointing fingers in any other direction.

Posted by: Sophia | July 22, 2007 10:31 PM

Let's just focus on religous right and this bogus war on terrorism and not address the real issues of economic disparity, poverty and injustices that are destroying the lives of billions around the globe. I doubt the wretched of the world care about osama bin ladin hiding somewhere, for them not having food and shelter are far more important concerns. This bogus "terror" is the game of politicans who exploit it.

Posted by: John | July 22, 2007 10:34 PM

Remember, we don't really know where bin Laden is. In fact, we don't know whether he is dead or alive. I've always thought that rather than hiding in a cave in Waziristan, he's installed in a Persian Gulf villa belonging to that UAR sheik the we saw him bragging to in that video. ("No one else thought the towers would collapse" or words to that effect) He gets up every morning, says a few prayers, has some tea, some fruit, checks the news on his satlelite TVs, says more prayers, has a light lunch,has his dialysis, says more prayers. a light supper, a visit to current wife, more prayers, and so to bed. I have no evidence that this is true,of course, but after five years, we only have gut feeling that it isn't. Phrank

Posted by: Phrank | July 22, 2007 11:43 PM

Remember, we don't really know where bin Laden is. In fact, we don't know whether he is dead or alive. I've always thought that rather than hiding in a cave in Waziristan, he's installed in a Persian Gulf villa belonging to that UAR sheik the we saw him bragging to in that video. ("No one else thought the towers would collapse" or words to that effect) He gets up every morning, says a few prayers, has some tea, some fruit, checks the news on his satlelite TVs, says more prayers, has a light lunch,has his dialysis, says more prayers. a light supper, a visit to current wife, more prayers, and so to bed. I have no evidence that this is true,of course, but after five years, we only have gut feeling that it isn't. Phrank

Posted by: Phrank | July 22, 2007 11:43 PM

The biggest terrorist of the world is united states, state-sanctioned terrorism that kills thousands of innocent people by bomb shelling is far worse than a handful of fanatics not supported by any govt or large groups of people. By definition, americans and others who support U.S. sanctioned terrorism aka "War" are complicit in this crime-may they all have the same darkness associated with them as history has given the NAzis and others.

Posted by: Sarah | July 23, 2007 12:00 AM

Sara, as an English speaker and a reader of the Post, could it be true that you're also an American? If you don't like our country, get out!

Posted by: Nathan Morton | July 23, 2007 6:14 PM

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