They Never Saw it Coming: US- Pakistan War on Terror
In order to keep up the US pressure and continue to humiliate Pakistan for its proximity with Afghanistan and being unfortunate enough to be dragged into war on terror Americans raised the bar by sending their top guns together this time to teach Pakistan a lesson which would leave the government and military cowering and begging for mercy.
Firstly for the benefit of those who don’t know the US envoy
Richard Charles Albert Holbrooke (born April 24, 1941), Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan under the Obama administration, is a top-ranking American diplomat
Admiral Mike Mullen
Adm. Mullen was sworn in as the 17th Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff on Oct. 1, 2007. He serves as the principal military advisor to the President, the Secretary of Defense, the National Security Council, and the Homeland Security Council.
SLAMABAD: Pakistan rejected on Tuesday a US proposal for joint operations in the tribal areas against terrorism and militancy, as differences of opinion between the two countries over various aspects of the war on terror came out into the open for the first time.
Two top US officials, presidential envoy for the region Richard Holbrooke and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen, had come to Islamabad with the idea of doing some tough talking and pressuring both the political and the military leadership to step up their efforts in the war on terror.
Pakistan Showed the finger
Deciding enough was enough Pakistan government finally managed to get some backbone and showed the finger to the US envoy in the press conference. according to Dwan
Instead, what they (Mllen, Helbrook) got was a barrage of criticism of the American position and the allegations constantly levelled against Islamabad about either protecting some Taliban elements or not doing enough to eliminate what the United States believes are the main elements carrying out attacks on Nato forces in Afghanistan.
Principles of Friendship
Normally if two nations strategically agree on common goals they work together and facilitate each other in order to achieve the objectives easily. Instead of providing a political support and showing sensitivity to the issue due to civilian and military loss of life US has been busy every day making new allegations of collaboration with the Taliban against Pakistani forces who are themselves locked in mortal combat. What sort of collaboration is that which is not stopping Taliban from beheading countless military and civilian officials, blowing up mosques, schools and hospitals logic and common sense seems to have long deserted the US top brass who started blaming Iran first, then decided that it was Secular Sadam helping Alqaida and finally the blame guns shifted towards Pakistan.
the stance taken by the Pakistani side came as a rude shock to the Americans, who had so far been taking the civilian and military leadership for granted. Pakistani sources said the proposal for joint operations in the tribal areas was floated by Mr Holbrooke and Admiral Mullen during a series of meetings with the civilian and military leadership.
The sources said that army chief Gen Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, during his meeting with Mr Holbrooke and Admiral Mullen, also took a tough stance over drone attacks. He voiced serious concern over the tirade of allegations against Inter-Services Intelligence levelled by US generals and said that linking the ISI with the Taliban was inappropriate.
Gen Kayani Puts the record straight
Keeping pleasantries aside Gen Kayani conveyed his displeasure and disappointment about US officials continuous blame game which some US military officials have also picked up to get the heat off their neck for their failures in Afghanistan. Once thing that has always annoyed the Pakistan military is that during their operational meetings such allegations are never highlighted and mainly US expresses its satisfaction over the progress and efforts made by Pakistan but few days the media airs reports quoting the same US officials blaming Pakistan for dealing with Taliban.
The army chief, the sources said, expressed Pakistan’s concerns without mincing his words. The US officials were told that it would be difficult to bridge the trust deficit if statements maligning the ISI kept coming from the United States, ignoring the contributions of the Pakistan army and ISI in the war on terror.
The sources also said that the ISI chief, Gen Asif Shuja Pasha, declined to separately meet the US officials, obviously because of the campaign launched against the premier intelligence agency, but perhaps citing other engagements. It was a clear expression of his annoyance over the well-organised campaign by a section in the US administration to single out the ISI for its criticism.
Mr Qureshi's resonse to the Blank Cheque
there has been much talk about tying the aid with the Pakistan's success in controlling taliban and over all effort in the peace process with a special mention of no blank cheques. which seemed to be a favourite catch phrase of US an Indian media. this time Mr Qureshi responded to that
At the joint press conference with Mr Holbrooke, Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, quite in contrast with his usual diplomatic, effusive and soft-spoken demeanour, was quite firm and categorical in mentioning Pakistan’s reservations with regard to the way the US was handling its ally in the war on terror and its anti-Pakistan campaign.
He attributed this divergence to the trust deficit between the two allies and said: ‘The bottom line is the question of trust.’
It was clear from the foreign minister’s words that there was a fundamental shift in the way Islamabad now wanted to deal with Washington. ‘The terms of engagement are very clear… We will engage with mutual trust and mutual respect in view and that is the bottom line.
Mr Qureshi’s message perhaps could not have been more unequivocal; he stated that cooperation could continue only if balance and respect were restored to the relationship.
‘We can only work together if we respect each other and trust each other. There is no other way and nothing else will work,’ he said rather bluntly.
Reacting to President Barack Obama’s assertion that there would be ‘no blank cheques for Pakistan”, the foreign minister said: “We neither accept nor give one.’
US tone changes
Now the alligations and bullying sarcasm are replaced by mutual trust and talk and consultations by Helbrook and Mullen also highlighted the Pakistani efforts in terms of military in the war against terror
Ambassador Holbrooke downplayed Mr Qureshi’s outburst by saying that the US was already addressing these issues through negotiations and would continue the approach in days to come. ‘In line with Foreign Minister Qureshi’s suggestions, we hosted the first Pakistan-Afghanistan-US trilateral meeting in Washington. We also went to The Hague… We will go to Tokyo, the second round of trilateral conference in Washington on May 6 and 7. This is the pattern that will continue.’
Admiral Mullen reiterated that the US commitment to Pakistan was for a long term and would lead to ‘a surplus of trust’.
further on this story from another site where ISI chief refused to attend the meeting
Tensions emerge in Pakistan-US relations
Both sides looked a little ill at ease during Tuesday's press conference
By Barbara Plett
BBC News, Islamabad
The body language said it all. The normally urbane and mild-mannered Pakistani Foreign Minister, Shah Mahmood Qureshi, was firm and spoke in categorical terms. Meanwhile, Richard Holbrooke chatted quietly with Admiral Mike Mullen - an act that, whatever the intention, was perceived as rude and contemptuous by those present. The US special envoy and chairman of joint chiefs of staff were holding a press conference with Mr Qureshi after "frank" discussions.
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