Telling the Pakistan Government to basically 'Go to hell'

Rick Moran
It's a harsh way to look at it but judging by this report from NPR, it seems that the US government has decided to thumb its nose at Pakistan and carry out cross border raids from Afghanistan without so much as a "by your leave" from their government.

The first phase of this three pronged attack plan calls for these lightening raids into Pakistan, hammering al-Qaeda camps. And we can expect
more in the future:

The intelligence community already had approval from the president to carry out operations inside Pakistan, which included attacks by Predator drones, which can carry 100-pound Hellfire missiles.

Additional authority came from the president just recently that allowed incursions by U.S. Special Operations forces, the source said.

A second source said that lawmakers on Capitol Hill were briefed on the new plan shortly before The New York Times broke the story this week about the Special Operations raid from Afghanistan into Pakistan. The source also said that CIA personnel from around the world were being pulled into the Afghan-Pakistan border area, an intelligence-community "surge" to go after bin Laden and other al-Qaida figures.

There was concern by some lawmakers about the political ramifications in Pakistan. The Pakistan government is offering some cooperation in halting the cross-border attacks by Islamist fighters from the tribal areas into Afghanistan. And Pakistan is a key logistics route for U.S. equipment heading into Afghanistan.

Should the U.S. raids continue on Pakistani soil, there is fear that the Pakistani government may halt - or at least curtail - its cooperation with American counterterrorist efforts in the border area. A military source says that the Pakistani government side is given little prior notice of the American military activity.

There have been complaints for years from NATO, from the Afghan government, and our own military that the Pakistani government has been either unwilling or unable to stem the flow of Taliban fighters from the tribal areas into Afghanistan where they kill our soldiers with impunity and then scamper back across the border to the safety of their camps.

It appears that the Administration has finally come to the conclusion that we are going to lose the war in Afghanistan unless we are able to attack the Taliban and their al-Qaeda allies where they live and train; inside Pakistan. The risk is great. Making Pakistan an enemy instead of an uneasy ally could very well harm our overall efforts in the war against terrorism. And it will complicate our relations with India - another ally whose importance grows as India's economy roars ahead.

But the military has taken the position of one thing at a time; smash the Taliban and al-Qaeda and come back later to pick up the pieces of our relationship with Pakistan. It is certainly not an optimum solution. But it's hard to see what other options were available to us at this time.

It's a harsh way to look at it but judging by this report from NPR, it seems that the US government has decided to thumb its nose at Pakistan and carry out cross border raids from Afghanistan without so much as a "by your leave" from their government.

The first phase of this three pronged attack plan calls for these lightening raids into Pakistan, hammering al-Qaeda camps. And we can expect
more in the future:

The intelligence community already had approval from the president to carry out operations inside Pakistan, which included attacks by Predator drones, which can carry 100-pound Hellfire missiles.

Additional authority came from the president just recently that allowed incursions by U.S. Special Operations forces, the source said.

A second source said that lawmakers on Capitol Hill were briefed on the new plan shortly before The New York Times broke the story this week about the Special Operations raid from Afghanistan into Pakistan. The source also said that CIA personnel from around the world were being pulled into the Afghan-Pakistan border area, an intelligence-community "surge" to go after bin Laden and other al-Qaida figures.

There was concern by some lawmakers about the political ramifications in Pakistan. The Pakistan government is offering some cooperation in halting the cross-border attacks by Islamist fighters from the tribal areas into Afghanistan. And Pakistan is a key logistics route for U.S. equipment heading into Afghanistan.

Should the U.S. raids continue on Pakistani soil, there is fear that the Pakistani government may halt - or at least curtail - its cooperation with American counterterrorist efforts in the border area. A military source says that the Pakistani government side is given little prior notice of the American military activity.

There have been complaints for years from NATO, from the Afghan government, and our own military that the Pakistani government has been either unwilling or unable to stem the flow of Taliban fighters from the tribal areas into Afghanistan where they kill our soldiers with impunity and then scamper back across the border to the safety of their camps.

It appears that the Administration has finally come to the conclusion that we are going to lose the war in Afghanistan unless we are able to attack the Taliban and their al-Qaeda allies where they live and train; inside Pakistan. The risk is great. Making Pakistan an enemy instead of an uneasy ally could very well harm our overall efforts in the war against terrorism. And it will complicate our relations with India - another ally whose importance grows as India's economy roars ahead.

But the military has taken the position of one thing at a time; smash the Taliban and al-Qaeda and come back later to pick up the pieces of our relationship with Pakistan. It is certainly not an optimum solution. But it's hard to see what other options were available to us at this time.