Pakistan, US Pledge to Strengthen Alliance

As Reported By The Khaleej Times

Pakistani and US diplomats on Thursday vowed to strengthen their troubled alliance two days after Washington acknowledged for the first time that it is waging “war” against militants in Pakistan.

US special envoy, Marc Grossman, on Thursday met Pakistani leaders in Islamabad as US drone strikes killed 10 militants, including a commander in the Haqqani network that the US military has linked to Pakistani intelligence.

“We tried to think about the future and way to keep our strategic dialogue going,” Grossman told a joint press conference with Pakistani Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar.

“We also talked about how can we continue in a systematic way to identify the interests that we share with Pakistan, and there are many, and then find ways to act on them jointly,” he added.

Grossman said they had been preparing for conferences on the future of Afghanistan, in Istanbul next month and in the German city of Bonn in December.

US officials openly acknowledge that the relationship with Pakistan is complicated, but say it is important to persevere no less because Pakistan is a key stakeholder in any eventual political settlement in Afghanistan.

Khar said both sides would “build on this partnership which is not only important for the two countries but also for the region and the whole world”.

On Tuesday, acknowledging for the first time that the US is waging a war in Pakistan, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta described Washington’s relationship with Islamabad as “complicated”.

“And admittedly, there are a lot of reasons for that. We are fighting a war in their country,” Panetta said.

He said the two countries sharply disagreed over “relations they maintain with some of the militant groups in that country,” a reference to Washington’s demand that Islamabad crack down on the Haqqani network.

A covert CIA drone campaign that the US government declines to discuss publicly has seen around 30 missile attacks in Pakistan since American troops killed Osama bin Laden near the capital Islamabad on May 2.

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  1. ‘ “We also talked about how can we continue in a systematic way to identify the interests that we share with Pakistan, and there are many, and then find ways to act on them jointly,” he added.’

    Khar said both sides would “build on this partnership which is not only important for the two countries but also for the region and the whole world”.

    These are two extracts from the above column, one by US and other by Pak official in its highest capacity. Both are war of words directed against each other. US knows that their carrot and stick strategy is failing on Pakistan, so far promoted by them insidiously. Now that US is keen to leave this costly war field that is bleeding them economically which they hadn’t thought of it earlier. This war of words against Pakistan is a desperation, US is suffering from. As US knows well that Pakistani Army will never like a regime with US domination in Afghanistan.

    US and Pakistan (read Sudi Sunni/Wahabi regime) are competing with or against each other in Afghanistan. US knows that unless Pakistan cooperates with her, Afghanistan will never be safe. India will be ineffective on this score. Pakistan is on the brink of disintegration and economically bled, ravaged by the internal ethnic fights and natural disasters; despite that Pakistan’s 40% of budgetary allocation are sucked by Military establishment and another 40% is spent on administrative machinary. Hardly a little is left for civilian developmental activities. Their priority is wars over the national integrity and its people.

    I hope the Pakistani establishment wakes up to the call of its national priorities over the wishful spread of imperialist designs. If the nation survives, its people thrive. If the nation perish, nothing remains to claim for. Pakistan’s priority should be survival of Pakistan state.

    • Sadly, things will continue to get worse before they get better.

      • My real worry is not just Pakistan but the changing world scenario over all. If we look at the situation, the Christian, Islamic and Jewish worlds are all three at loggerheads against each other. No one is wanting to compromise with each other. This is the worst part I feel. Then there is a third or fourth factor of China/Russia communist national blocks. They are equally powerful forces hard to put aside. All these divergent forces have their individual interests. None can be discounted. This is my real worry and that is where I fear a real gamechanger.

  1. October 13th, 2011

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