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Re: SC76

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September 14, 2008 06:21AM
http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=10179

President Bush authorises US ground operations inside Pakistan

In a reckless and criminal attempt to suppress the growing insurgency in Afghanistan, President Bush has secretly authorised the use of US Special Forces against targets inside the border areas of Pakistan. The first publicly acknowledged operation took place on September 3 when helicopter-borne soldiers landed at a village in South Waziristan, attacked three compounds and slaughtered at least 20 people............

............Whatever the actions of sections of the ISI, the basic cause of the rising insurgency inside Afghanistan is the brutal character of the US-led neo-colonial occupation of the country. Nearly seven years of air strikes and raids that have resulted in the death or detention of thousands of civilians have provoked fierce opposition, particularly among the Pashtun tribes that straddle the border between Afghanistan and Pakistan. Having laid waste to much of the south and east of Afghanistan, the Bush administration is launching a dangerous new war in neighbouring Pakistan.

The US wars in Afghanistan have already had a deeply destabilising impact on Pakistan. Under pressure from Washington, the Pakistani military has dispatched some 120,000 troops to the border areas, where intense fighting has left many dead on both sides and forced up to 300,000 people to flee. Local tribes are both fearful and resentful at the growing number of US missile strikes in the FATA by CIA-controlled Predator drones, which have indiscriminately killed civilians including women and children.


Pakistani anger

The authorisation of unilateral US ground attacks inside Pakistan is profoundly embarrassing for the government and the military. Referring to last week’s US raid, General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, head of the Pakistani military, declared on Wednesday that “such like reckless actions only help the militants and further fuel the militancy in the area”. He flatly denied that there was any “agreement or understanding with the coalition forces whereby they are allowed to conduct operations on our side of the border”.

In a chilling warning of potential Pakistani-US clashes, General Kayani declared: “The sovereignty and territorial integrity of the country will be defended at all cost.” The fact that Kayani, who previously has been regarded as sympathetic to Washington, made such a threat is an indication of deep ruptures within the Pakistani military. The army’s operations in the FATA have already provoked opposition in the officer caste, many of whom are ethnic Pashtuns sympathetic to the local tribes.

More broadly, there are deep concerns in the army hierarchy that Pakistan’s backing for the US occupation of Afghanistan and more broadly the bogus “war on terrorism” has weakened the country’s strategic position vis-à-vis India, its main regional rival. Following the September 11 attacks, Washington pressured former Pakistani strongman Pervez Musharraf to withdraw support from what was regarded as an important ally—the Taliban regime in Afghanistan. Now Pakistan confronts a situation in Afghanistan where India has established close links with the US-backed puppet president Hamid Karzai. At the same time, the US has forged a closer strategic relationship with New Delhi, even as it has continued to berate Islamabad for failing to do enough in the “war on terror”.

As far as the Pakistani military is concerned, US Special Forces operations inside Pakistani territory set a dangerous precedent for other powers, especially India, to do the same. The political establishment in New Delhi routinely brands separatist militias in Indian-controlled Kashmir as “terrorists”. The most chauvinistic elements have in the past called for Indian military action against “terrorist training camps” in Pakistani-held Kashmir. Amid rising unrest in Kashmir, there are undoubtedly fears in Islamabad that India may take advantage of the political turmoil in Pakistan and the virtual civil war along the border with Afghanistan.

Some commentators have speculated that Kayani’s unusually blunt comments were simply a shot across the bows of Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari, who was formally installed in office the previous day. Zardari has repeatedly expressed his support for Washington’s “war on terror” and invited Afghan President Karzai to the swearing-in ceremony on Tuesday. At the same time, however, Zardari is acutely aware that most Pakistanis are opposed to the US occupation of Afghanistan and to US incursions. Following Kayani’s statement, Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani vowed yesterday to defend the country’s borders, adding: “I have the same opinion as that of the army chief on US measures and there is no disparity between our viewpoints.”

Whatever Kayani’s immediate motives, his statement reflects the depth of both anti-US sentiment among Pakistani population and the crisis in the military and political establishment. Pakistan remains heavily reliant on American financial and military aid, but the price has been deepening political turmoil, a weakened strategic position and an escalating war throughout the FATA region. By authorising the use of US troops inside Pakistan, the Bush administration is inflaming an already explosive situation. Having created two quagmires in Iraq and Afghanistan, the US is well on the way to producing a third............

Was it not our War Crimminal Leader who said fairly recently that Russia should repect the national soveriegnty of Georgia? And yet The Decider has violated the national sovereignty of Afganistan, Iraq, and now Pakistan. Do you think for a second Bush and the rest of this cabal of thugs would tolerate any such intrusions onto US soil? These elites have their agenda's and other countries national sovereignty and borders means nothing to them, that is of course, unless the country in question has a real ability to defend itself, like Russia or China for example.
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