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Title: Pakistan’s Spy Agency Is Tied to Attack on U.S. Embassy
Source: The NY Times
URL Source: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/23/w ... n-attack-on-us-embassy.html?hp
Published: Sep 23, 2011
Author: ELISABETH BUMILLER and JANE PERLEZ
Post Date: 2011-09-23 08:48:13 by war
Keywords: None
Views: 1952
Comments: 6

WASHINGTON — The nation’s top military official said Thursday that Pakistan’s spy agency played a direct role in supporting the insurgents who carried out the deadly attack on the American Embassy in Kabul last week. It was the most serious charge that the United States has leveled against Pakistan in the decade that America has been at war in Afghanistan.

In comments that were the first to directly link the spy agency, the Directorate for Inter-Services Intelligence, with an assault on the United States, Adm. Mike Mullen, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, went further than any other American official in blaming the ISI for undermining the American effort in Afghanistan. His remarks were certain to further fray America’s shaky relationship with Pakistan, a nominal ally.

The United States has long said that Pakistan’s intelligence agency supports the Haqqani network, based in Pakistan’s tribal areas, as a way to extend Pakistani influence in Afghanistan. But Admiral Mullen made clear that he believed that the support extended to increasingly high-profile attacks in Afghanistan aimed directly at the United States.

These included a truck bombing at a NATO outpost south of Kabul on Sept. 10, which killed at least five people and wounded 77 coalition soldiers — one of the worst tolls for foreign troops in a single attack in the war — as well as the embassy assault that killed 16 Afghan police officers and civilians.

“With ISI support, Haqqani operatives planned and conducted that truck bomb attack, as well as the assault on our embassy,” Admiral Mullen said in a hearing of the Senate Armed Services Committee. “We also have credible evidence that they were behind the June 28th attack against the Intercontinental Hotel in Kabul and a host of other smaller but effective operations.” In short, he said, “the Haqqani network acts as a veritable arm of Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence agency.” His remarks were part of a deliberate effort by American officials to ratchet up pressure on Pakistan and perhaps pave the way for more American drone strikes or even cross-border raids into Pakistan to root out insurgents from their havens. American military officials refused to discuss what steps they were prepared to take, although Admiral Mullen’s statement made clear that taking on the Haqqanis had become an urgent priority.

On Thursday, Rehman Malik, Pakistan’s interior minister, rejected accusations by the United States of ISI involvement in the attacks in Afghanistan. “If you say that it is ISI involved in that attack, I categorically deny it,” he said in an interview with Reuters. “We have no such policy to attack or aid attack through Pakistani forces or through any Pakistani assistance.” He also said his government would “not allow” an American operation aimed at the Haqqani network in North Waziristan, a remote part of Pakistan’s lawless tribal region.

Mr. Malik seemed to indicate that American officials had threatened on Tuesday in meetings in Washington with the head of the ISI, Lt. Gen. Ahmed Shuja Pasha, that American troops were prepared to cross the border from Afghanistan to attack Haqqani militants. An American official would say only that David H. Petraeus, the new director of the Central Intelligence Agency, told General Pasha that the C.I.A. would continue its campaign of drone strikes against the Haqqanis in Pakistan and pursue them in Afghanistan.

“The Pakistan nation will not allow the boots on our ground, never,” Mr. Malik said in an interview with Reuters. “Our government is already cooperating with the U.S. — but they also must respect our sovereignty.”

A senior American official said Thursday that no decisions had been made on actions that the Obama administration might take against the Haqqanis.

American covert raids into Pakistan are rare — only two, including the raid that killed Osama bin Laden in May, have become public — but some American intelligence officials argue that more aggressive ground raids in Pakistan are necessary.

The United States gives Pakistan more than $2 billion in security assistance annually, although this summer the Obama administration decided to suspend or in some cases cancel about a third of that aid this year. Altogether, about $800 million in military aid and equipment could be affected.

The suspension was intended to chasten Pakistan for expelling American military trainers this year and to press its army to fight militants more effectively. The decision was made after the Bin Laden raid in Pakistan, where the leader of Al Qaeda had been living comfortably near a top military academy.

Admiral Mullen is to retire at the end of this month, and coming from him the statements carried exceptional weight. For years he has been the American military official leading the effort to improve cooperation with the Pakistanis. But relations have reached a nadir since the Bin Laden raid. Pakistani officials were angered that they had not been told of the raid in advance, and questions remain about whether Pakistani intelligence was sheltering Bin Laden.

Although American military officials believe that the ISI is in many cases directing the Haqqani network to attack United States forces in Afghanistan, they did not go so far as to say on Thursday that the ISI specifically directed the assault on the American Embassy. American military officials did not describe the kind of support they believe the ISI gave the Haqqani network for the embassy attack, and also offered no evidence for their claim. In July 2008, the United States was able to determine that the ISI was behind the bombing of the Indian Embassy in Kabul based on intercepted communications of ISI officers.

Admiral Mullen testified alongside Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta, who told the committee that the attack on the embassy and the assassination this week of Burhanuddin Rabbani, the leader of Afghanistan’s High Peace Council and a former Afghan president, were “a sign of weakness in the insurgency.” He cast the attacks as signs that the Taliban had shifted to high-profile targets in an effort to disrupt the progress that the American military had made.

No one has claimed responsibility for the attack on Mr. Rabbani, which has dealt a potentially devastating blow to efforts to negotiate a peace with the Taliban.

In his remarks to the committee, Admiral Mullen voiced a stern warning to Pakistani officials, who he said were undermining their own interests as well as American interests in the region.

“They may believe that by using these proxies, they are hedging their bets or redressing what they feel is an imbalance in regional power,” he said. “But in reality, they have already lost that bet. By exporting violence, they’ve eroded their internal security and their position in the region. They have undermined their international credibility and threatened their economic well-being.”

He also said he did not think he had wasted his time by putting so much effort into improving ties with Pakistan’s government.

“I’ve done this because I believe that a flawed and difficult relationship is better than no relationship at all,” he said. “Some may argue I’ve wasted my time, that Pakistan is no closer to us than before, and may now have drifted even further away. I disagree. Military cooperation again is warming.”

Elisabeth Bumiller reported from Washington, and Jane Perlez from Islamabad, Pakistan. Mark Mazzetti contributed reporting from Washington.

This article has been revised to reflect the following correction:

Correction: September 22, 2011

An earlier version of this article included a photo caption that mistakenly referred to Leon E. Panetta as the C.I.A. director. He is the secretary of defense. Additionally, the incorrect rank was given for Lt. Gen. Ahmed Shuja Pasha. He is not a major general.

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#1. To: war (#0)

Notice there is No question whatsoever.

Implication:

The Taliban could Not Possibly have done this on their own.

Even though we Track the Soviets exactly...

And a BTW:

What Embassy attack? I didn't see the State Tv dwelling on this? 8D

mcgowanjm  posted on  2011-09-23   9:51:09 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#2. To: All (#1)

AAMOF I didn't see a Single Post from LF on this.

I think it's time for the Afghans Update....;}

mcgowanjm  posted on  2011-09-23   9:51:47 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#3. To: All (#2)

First, an Update on the Prime Indicator of Violence over Our Oil under Their sand:

Obama's UN Debacle Robert Dreyfuss

September 22, 2011

Barack Obama’s appearance at the United Nations was an unmitigated disaster.

Like a slow-motion train wreck, one that everyone knew was coming months ago, the president succumbed shamelessly to the domestic political pressure from the Israel lobby, its Republican party allies, and the menacing Benjamin Netanyahu, the thuggish prime minister of Israel. In one speech, Obama smashed to pieces every hopeful speech, false-start peace initiative and half-hearted initiative he’s tried since taking office. The appointment of George Mitchell as Middle East peace envoy? Dead. The June 2009, speech in Cairo aimed at rebuilding ties to the Arab and Muslim world? Dead. His feckless call for Israel to stop building illegal settlements on Palestinian land under occupation by Israel’s brutish army and a vast militia of armed, fanatical settlers? Dead. His weak-kneed call for a deal between Israel and Palestine based on the 1967 borders? Dead as a doornail."

mcgowanjm  posted on  2011-09-23   9:53:43 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#4. To: mcgowanjm (#3)

TAKE YOUR MEDS.

Take them!!!!!!

-------------------------------------
Whatcha lookin' at, butthead
Why don't you make like a tree and get out of here?

Biff Tannen  posted on  2011-09-23   9:58:13 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#5. To: All (#3)

Strangely quiet.

Only the Ex President's head was exploded.

Turban bomber kills former Afghan president - Telegraph

www.telegraph.co.uk/.../afghanistan/.../Turban-bomber-kills-former-

...Add to iGoogle You +1'd this publicly. Undo 2 days ago – The head of Afghanistan's High Peace Council, former President Burhanuddin ... The bomber detonated explosives hidden in his turban as he ...

mcgowanjm  posted on  2011-09-23   10:02:05 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#6. To: Biff Tannen (#4)

TAKE YOUR MEDS.

Take them!!!!!!

CAPS BUTTON BROKEN!

FIX IT!

LMFAO

8D

mcgowanjm  posted on  2011-09-23   10:03:18 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


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