Sunday, January 6, 2008

Third front

Uh oh, the Bush administration is at it again. The New York Times reports today that the top U.S. national security advisers met Friday with Vice President Dick Cheney and Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice to discuss expanding the CIA's covert operations in Pakistan. Many in the government want the CIA and the military to be more aggressive and conduct more operations in the tribal region along Pakistan's long northern border with Afghanistan, where Osama bin Laden is said to be hiding. But what have they been doing all this time if not that? Isn't that the reason the United States cozied up to Pakistan dictator Pervez Musharraf, to have the freedom to do that? Of course, there are dangers. Some in the government warn that the presence of U.S. forces will cause a backlash against Musharraf, and damage relations with the Pakistani military. Pakistan has 100,000 troops in the tribal areas but has apparently had little success against al-Qaida insurgents. The Times said the White House meeting on Friday was part of a reassessment of U.S. policy toward Pakistan following last month's assassination of opposition leader Benazir Bhutto.

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