Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Never Mind Iran

I wrote this post yesterday afternoon, but I didn't publish it because it wasn't anything more than a flip, smart aleck one-liner about a U.S. invasion of Pakistan. It seemed pretty dumb.

Then I woke up to this NYT headline today: "Pakistan Says U.S. Airstrike Killed 11 of Its Soldiers."

Here's what I wrote yesterday:

Today's NYT editorial page is on alert about U.S. saber-rattling against Iran.

But the U.S. is not going to invade Iran. The U.S. is going to invade Pakistan.

"Last week John D. Negroponte, the deputy secretary of state, used perhaps the strongest language yet against Pakistan, saying that the United States found it 'unacceptable' that extremists used the tribal areas to plan attacks against Afghanistan, the rest of the world and Pakistan itself. 'We will not be satisfied until the violent extremism emanating from the Federally Administered Tribal Areas is brought under control,' Mr. Negroponte told the National Endowment for Democracy.""Pakistan Defies U.S. on Halting Afghanistan Raids," NYT, 5/16/08.

"Pakistan's new government yesterday agreed to pull its forces out of a restive region near the Afghan border and allow elements of Islamic Shariah law to be imposed there in return for a promise by local Islamic militants to end a wave of terror and arrest foreign terrorists operating in the area. The accord came a day after Deputy Secretary of State John D. Negroponte expressed deep reservations about such accords, noting that a similar deal struck by Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf in 2006 had allowed Taliban and al Qaeda forces to recruit and rearm. State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said yesterday the United States is 'reserving judgment' on the new pact, acknowledging that previous attempts to negotiate had not curbed militant activity on the border. Mr. Negroponte was more explicit in a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing Tuesday, saying the Bush administration 'has some skepticism about [Pakistan's] ability to enforce any such arrangement.' 'There is a lot at stake here, and we have made that point repeatedly,' he said.""Deal Reached with Pakistan’s Militants," Washington Times, 5/22/08.

Here's some more recent coverage of the run up to the pending attack:

June 5, 2008: "Afghan Borders Concern NATO Force Leader,"

June 2, 2008:"Taliban Leader Flaunts Power Inside Pakistan,"

May 30, 2008: "NATO Chief in Afghanistan Says Pakistan’s Tack on Militants Is Not as Expected,"

May 22, 2008: "Pakistani Taliban urges sharia rule,"

May 22, 2008: "Pakistan and Taliban Agree to Army’s Gradual Pullback,"

May 21, 2008: "Pakistan troops to vacate Swat,"

May 6, 2008: "U.S. Worry Grows over Pakistan's Tribal Peace Deal,"


April 22, 2008: "Pakistan Taliban vows to fight on."

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