Monday, May 02, 2011 3:24 AM
The turd was killed in a mansion located in a "densely populated" area called Abbottabad, 30 miles outside Islamabad -- not in that dark, wet cave in the North West Territories where, it was often imagined, his only luxury would have been a dialysis machine plugged into a generator. No, the jihad kingpin was living a good life in what passes for civilization in Pakistan. As Dexter Filkins tells us, Abbottabad is home to "a Pakistani military base, a military academy, and many retired Pakistani officers."
Is it even remotely possible everyone in town knew nothing? And have I mentioned (lately) that the motto of the Pakistani Army is "Faith in Allah, fear of Allah, and jihad in the path of Allah"?
While Pakistan supports the Taliban in its IED war on American troops, the US has, unconscionably, remained "partners" with the nuclear-armed sharia state due to its supposed help against "al Qaeda" -- 100 members of which, Gen. Petraeus says, are running around Afghanistan, which surely makes the jihad haven of London, England a better candidate for ISAF occupation. Not to mention Abbottabad. But I digress.
... the fact that Osama was hiding in an urban area raises many obvious questions, like who was taking care of him, and how. ...
You can be sure of one thing: American officials no longer regard Pakistan’s leaders with a great deal of trust, if they ever did. In the case of Osama’s death, initial indications are that Pakistani military and intelligence officials may have provided some routine coöperation with the Americans but were not given the identity of the target. This makes sense: In recent months, American officials have stopped informing Pakistani officials ahead of time about the C.I.A.’s drone strikes against militants in the tribal areas, out of fear that they might be tipped off.
At least on the surface, relations between the United States and Pakistan are the worst they have been in years, largely because American officials are running out of patience with the double game.
And maybe because recent news reports indicate Pakistan is actively urging A-stan to ditch the US. Filkins continues:
Last week, I travelled to Pakistan with Admiral Mike Mullen, the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, and he seemed a very impatient man. During interviews with Pakistani journalists, Mullen took the unusual step of publicly accusing the Pakistani military of supporting the Haqqani network, the virulent wing of the Taliban that is responsible for the deaths of hundreds of American soldiers in eastern Afghanistan.
Just to recap: The US is supporting the Pakistani military and the Pakistan military is supporting the Haqqani network (and others) responsible for the deaths of hundreds of US soldiers, and thousands of injuries. According to former US Ambassador to Pakistan Anne Patterson via Wikileaks, Pakistan is also supporting Afghan Taliban, the Hekmatyar network and Mumbai attackers Lashkar-e-Taiba, and "no amount of money" will change the policy. Given these facts, how does the US itself not share responsibility for these same US casualties? Our policymakers, from Bush to Obama on down, someday, somehow, must be held accountable for this reckless policy.
Back to Filkins:
The Haqqani network, based in North Waziristan on the Afghan border, maintains the closest ties to Al Qaeda among Afghan guerrilla groups, and, until recently, was the principal place where American intelligence was looking for Osama.
Or Las Vegas.
“It’s fairly well known that the I.S.I. has a longstanding relationship with the Haqqani network,” Mullen told a reporter with Dawn, the Pakistani newspaper. “Haqqani is supporting, funding, training fighters that are killing Americans and killing coalition partners…. So that’s at the core—it’s not the only thing—but that’s at the core that I think is the most difficult part of the relationship.”
Good thinking, Magoo.
But note the words of cotton wool: this unbridgeable schism in strategic outlook -- we support different sides! -- is simply the "difficult part" of an ongoing relationship.
The greatest legacy Osama bin Laden could leave behind is a US break with our costly and fruitless "partnership" with axis-of-jihad-member Pakistan over OBL's apparent free pass to live large in Abbottabad.
One more thing. Last week, I was struck by the schizophrenia of Army orders to troops deploying to A-stan to trust no one (in light of recurring incidence of Afghan security force murders of Western troops) but to partner up with them just the same. This same schizophrenia describes our "relationship" with Pakistan perfectly. Trust no one, partner up -- pony up, too. Billions of your dollars pay for this massive policy dysfunction -- and will for the foreseeable future given the catastrophic injuries in A-stan suffered at Paki-US hands (sounds weird but that's what happens when you support, even indirectly, your enemies).
Still, for all the rancor, American officials made it clear to me that much of the Pakistani furor was for public consumption only. Pakistan’s leaders, they said, were working hard to maintain at least some parts of their relationship with the United States. “We are getting more coöperation from the Pakistanis than we ever have,” an American official told me in Pakistan.