Hillary Clinton; HARD CHOICES: Book Analysis. Chapter 9. PAKISTAN: NATIONAL HONOR. (Will there be another ISIS in Afghanistan And Pakistan?)

November 5, 2014 by
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Trucks waiting to cross into Afghanistan with military supplies after Pakistan closed the crossingPakistan truck hold up  3

This chapter tells the story of Osama bin Laden’s(ObL) death and the   U. S. relationship with Pakistan. It also tells of recent politics in Pakistan after the military dictatorship of Pervez  Musharraf.

The decision to go into Pakistan to capture or kill ObL was a difficult one and Hilary as Secretary of State participated in the decision along with selected Cabinet Ministers, the White House staff, the military, the intelligence community and the President. Ultimately after listening to the pros and cons President Obama made the decision to send the Navy Seals in to apprehend bin Laden.

Hillary was for sending in the Seals even though the evidence showed a probability that a high value At Quada official was living there probably bin Laden, but It could just as well have been  Ayman al-Zawahiri or some other commander. Also we were not going to notify the Pakistani government beforehand because of perceived security problems among the various factions there.

And there was the fact that our servicemen would be deep inside Pakistan far from any support if the Pakistani’s decided to treat them as hostile intruders.

Then there was the memory of the failed attempt to rescue the hostages in Iran under the Carter Administration where eight American soldiers were killed when two helicopters collided.

President Obama listened to all the arguments for and against and decided to go with the Seals rather than a drone strike or a missile attack.

Pakistan was a country that we were giving ten times more aid to than all other countries combined. This was probably because we needed their ports to deliver the supplies and material for our operations in Afghanistan.

Hillary was of the opinion that our relationship with Pakistan was on a transactional basis and not  based on shared political, moral or ethical beliefs with some exceptions.

The Pakistani’s were concerned that their sovereignty was being compromised by the U.S. conducting drone strikes and other cross border raids but they participated as well in the active rooting out of Al Quada and other terrorists along the North West Frontier where they had lost many soldiers.

Another complicating factor was that they saw India as their major enemy not Al Quada or the Taliban.

After Musharraf left office Pakistan was able to elect a democratic  government. President Zardari was elected when his wife Benazir Bhutto, a presidential candidate, was assassinated at a campaign rally in Rawalpindi. Thus the state of politics in Pakistan was volatile.

While the killing of bin Laden deep into Pakistan proper without their prior knowledge or consent caused a public uproar it was not as bad as when our military accidently killed 24 Pakistani soldiers near the border with Afghanistan. This caused a serious rupture in our relations and the supply lines from Pakistani ports   into Afghanistan were cut creating logistical problems for our us and our allies. The closing of the supply lines was costing $100 million a month. This was also a loss of revenue to the Pakistanis who operated the terminals, truck lines and their employees.

However both Pakistan and the free world have a joint interest in fighting terrorism and Hillary was able to persuade  President Zardari it was in our mutual self interest to open the supply lines to our operations to defeat the Taliban, Al Quada and other terrorists.

Beyond our partnership with Pakistan to defeat terrorism in their part of the World Hillary inaugurated the Global Counterterrorism Forum which Turkey co chaired and which other  Muslim countries joined to fight terrorism all over the World. Progams were set up to train police, educators, religious leaders and others to combat terrorism.

Terrorists need a constant flow of new recruits and they are to be found in areas of poverty, ignorance  and lawlessness. Hillary believes that the U.S. must be engaged in changing conditions in these places where ever they exist in order to counter the root causes of terrorism.

(Pakistan wants a weak Afghanistan that they can dominate through their intelligence service. An Afghanistan dominated by the Taliban which they still don’t rule out could be a problem for them if they are perceived as allies of the United States the Taliban’s arch enemy. That is why Pakistan is so conflicted because they are wondering who will run the country after the NATO forces leave.

A hostile Afghanistan would leave them sandwiched between India and whoever is running the Afghanistan. At this point it looks like the Taliban will be running the country except for the major cities. Also Pakistan has a Taliban faction in their own country as well as the remnants of Al Quada. There could be another ISIS in this area.)  



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