Hamilton, Madison, and Jay

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Location: Mesa, Arizona, United States

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Sunday, July 1, 2007

Scoop Of The Day From Hot Air: Coalition Forces Will Be Allowed To Enter Pakistan

Allah is taking this with a grain of salt as we all should. But if this is true, it is a significant shift for President Musharraf. I cannot say that this is a bad idea for either side:

Since last September, North Atlantic Treaty Organization forces in Afghanistan have been pressing Islamabad for the right to conduct extensive hot-pursuit operations into Pakistan to target Taliban and al-Qaeda bases.

According to Asia Times Online contacts, NATO and its US backers have gotten their wish: coalition forces will start hitting targets wherever they might be. Pakistani President General Pervez Musharraf is expected to make an important announcement on extremism during an address to the nation in the next day or two.

The ATol contacts in Islamabad say that coalition intelligence has pinpointed at least four centers in the tribal areas of North Waziristan and South Waziristan on the border with Afghanistan from which Taliban operations inside Afghanistan are run. These bases include arms caches and the transfer and raising of money and manpower, the latter in the form of foot-soldiers to fight with the Taliban-led insurgency.

Operations inside Pakistan might be carried out independently by the United States, probably with air power, by Pakistani forces acting alone or as joint offensives. In all cases, though, the US will pull the strings, for instance by providing the Pakistanis with information on targets to hit.

The change in policy between coalition forces and the Pakistanis may have a great deal to do with this, also from the Times story:

All these pro-Taliban/al-Qaeda zones on the Afghan border have connections with the Lal Masjid (Red Mosque) in Islamabad, run by outspoken brothers Maulana Abdul Aziz and Ghazi Abdul Rasheed. The brothers are openly pro-Taliban and also run large Islamic seminaries for boys and girls. The Pakistani establishment believes Aziz is in fact the new leader of all the Taliban and al-Qaeda assets spreading through northwestern Pakistan, especially the zone commanded by the TNSM. Aziz delivers lectures by telephone every evening to TNSM members.

Lal Masjid has had numerous high-profile run-ins and standoffs with the government, but Islamabad has never risked an outright confrontation, given the power and influence of the brothers and their standing in the jihadist world. They can be expected to organize sustained resistance should NATO/US forces launch attacks into Pakistan. Some reports claim that about 70 suicide bombers are waiting to be unleashed from the mosque. But any attack on the mosque could set off a chain reaction all the way from Islamabad to the Afghan border and beyond, in the process throwing Pakistan further into turmoil.

Of course some of this newfound desire to end the Talibanization of Pakistan may have come from the report from our military intelligence analysts that said President Musharraf would be lucky to finish out the summer without a coup being pulled on him. That analysis comes after carefully assessing the removal of the chief justice, and the fallout that has erupted from that move.

But if this is true, we should look on the bright side -- we now have the opportunity to actually engage the Taliban/AQ elements in Pakistan rather than simply pursuing them. We can stay, stand, and fight in Pakistan. President Musharraf knows he is in a pickle right now with the failed treaty between his government and the Taliban in the south. They promised him they would stay contained, and he was a fool for believing them. Now he has a problem on his hands, and he needs our help to clean up part of it.

Personally, I have no problem with this. Thomas said "It's about damn time." Indeed. The days of fighting a sensitive war should be over, and we should be annihilating the Taliban in southern Pakistan. Who knows? We may just come up with a couple of big fish.

Marcie

1 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is reported there is confirmation that Iran is using Lebanese Hezbollah Shi'its to supply Iraq Shi'ites with weapons. It's also reported that 20 to 60 Iraqi's at a time is trained in three terrorist training camps close to Tehran. It's no secret that Iran wants us out of Iraq. Rawriter

July 2, 2007 at 7:31 PM  

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