Pakistani soldiers abandon search for bin Laden

zimv20

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Pakistani soldiers abandon search for bin Laden

Pakistan will withdraw soldiers from tribal region considered hiding place for Al Qaeda leadership

PESHAWAR, Pakistan - The Pakistan army said today it will withdraw hundreds of troops from a tense tribal region near Afghanistan where Osama bin Laden and his top deputy were believed to be hiding.

The withdrawals from the South Waziristan area come after several military operations by thousands of troops against remnants of bin Laden's Al Qaeda organization and its supporters in recent months.

Although the tribal region is considered a possible hiding place for bin Laden and his deputy, Ayman al-Zawahri, a senior Pakistan general said earlier this month that no sign of bin Laden has been found.

Bin Laden, architect of the Sept. 11 attacks against the United States, has been on the run since U.S. forces invaded Afghanistan in October 2001, routing the Taliban rulers, who harbored Al Qaeda militants.

The army will remove checkpoints in Wana, the main town in South Waziristan, Lt. Gen. Safdar Hussain, the top general in northwestern Pakistan, said after meeting with tribal elders Friday.

He said the moves are "in return for the support of tribesmen in operations against foreign miscreants." Some troops will remain in the area, he said.

"We have been assured by tribal elders that they will not allow miscreants to hide in areas under their control," Hussain said.

Between 7,000 and 8,000 Pakistani forces were deployed in a three-pronged offensive in the eastern reaches of the rugged region this month. U.S. military forces remain largely on the Afghanistan side in hopes of capturing or killing any Al Qaeda operatives crossing the border.

Earlier this month, U.S. Army Lt. Gen. Lance Smith, deputy commander of Central Command, said it was "essential that Pakistan military continue their operations" in the area, adding that Pakistan has made "very, very positive moves" against Al Qaeda and its supporters in the past six months.

Smith said Pakistan's military was so effective in pressuring Al Qaeda leaders hiding in the tribal region of western Pakistan that bin Laden and his top deputies no longer were able to direct terrorist operations.

At a news conference Friday, Hussain presented three captured Central Asians, including two teenage boys, alleged to be Islamic militants. He said the militants were using the youths to target military forces.

Pakistani officials have said hundreds of Arab and Central Asian militants suspected of links with Al Qaeda were hiding in South Waziristan, supported by sympathetic tribesmen.

Earlier, provincial Gov. Syed Iftikhar Hussain Shah said all "innocent people" rounded up from the tribal regions during the recent military operations will be released.

He asked tribesmen to give all possible help to the government in seizing foreign militants and tried to ease concerns that the government had been targeting any tribe.

"The misunderstanding between you and the government appeared when you gave refuge to some foreign elements, who were neither your friends nor well-wishers nor of the government," he said.
only 26 days after the election. nice. hey, at least we got saddam.
 

skunk

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Jun 29, 2002
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Remind me again why Pakistan is an ally of the US. Is it because their scientists and intelligence service help in proliferating nuclear technology to rogue states, or is it because they are no longer seeking out "evildoers", or is it simply because Musharraf is such a nice, cuddly, democratic bloke at heart who finds it really hard to take off his uniform?

Mission Accomplished.
 

takao

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Dec 25, 2003
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skunk said:
Remind me again why Pakistan is an ally of the US. Is it because their scientists and intelligence service help in proliferating nuclear technology to rogue states, or is it because they are no longer seeking out "evildoers", or is it simply because Musharraf is such a nice, cuddly, democratic bloke at heart who finds it really hard to take off his uniform?
i would be pleased to get an answer to that as well...

skunk said:
Mission Accomplished.
exactly my thought when i read the thread title
 

miloblithe

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Nov 14, 2003
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skunk said:
Remind me again why Pakistan is an ally of the US.
I think it's basically "the enemy of my enemy is my friend" foreign policy. India leaned towards the Soviet Union during much of the Cold War; Pakistan was fighting India, so we supported them.
 

blackfox

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Feb 18, 2003
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skunk said:
Remind me again why Pakistan is an ally of the US. Is it because their scientists and intelligence service help in proliferating nuclear technology to rogue states, or is it because they are no longer seeking out "evildoers", or is it simply because Musharraf is such a nice, cuddly, democratic bloke at heart who finds it really hard to take off his uniform?
I believe the answer to that question can be gleaned from Machiavelli:
"since one must start from the present state of things, one can only work with the material at hand."

You might also reference Hobbes' Leviathan.
 

skunk

macrumors G4
Jun 29, 2002
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blackfox said:
I believe the answer to that question can be gleaned from Machiavelli:
"since one must start from the present state of things, one can only work with the material at hand."
rhetorical question

n : a statement that is formulated as a question but that is not supposed to be answered; "he liked to make his points with rhetorical questions"
:rolleyes:
 

Xtremehkr

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Jul 4, 2004
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Or one would rather not catch their most useful boogeyman.

The focus has been entirely on Iran, and other oil rich countries in the middle east.

Al Qaeda got lucky on 9/11, Bush got luckier as it gave him the greatest motivational tool in history to use to get his policies past, fear.

Using Pakastanis was a cop out in the first place, the US had Special Forces all over the area and an a large military force there for long enough.

It just made it look as though something was being done.
 

IJ Reilly

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Jul 16, 2002
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miloblithe said:
I think it's basically "the enemy of my enemy is my friend" foreign policy. India leaned towards the Soviet Union during much of the Cold War; Pakistan was fighting India, so we supported them.
That was then, and now is now. The US gives Pakistan (a military dictatorship, if we need any reminder) a tremendous amount of aid -- for which we get what, exactly, in return?
 

Thomas Veil

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Feb 14, 2004
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Oh man.

I sincerely, sincerely, hope that this is some kind of trick to make bin Laden think it's safe to come out into the open, where they can capture him. (Remember, "some troops" will remain.)

:(

Naaaaaahhhhhhh.......
 

3rdpath

macrumors 68000
IJ Reilly said:
That was then, and now is now. The US gives Pakistan (a military dictatorship, if we need any reminder) a tremendous amount of aid -- for which we get what, exactly, in return?
we " leased" the use of their airspace, bases and troops for a finite amount of time. this is the fallout of gaining allies thru force or bribery.

in the big game of poker, the u.s. may have a lot of chips, but we're consistently one of the worst players at the table.
 

3rdpath

macrumors 68000
dsharits said:
You all just don't quit do you? Everything's gotta be a conspiracy. Come on, give it a rest already.
i'm sorry, were we suppossed to quit questioning this administration, their tactics and their policies? that mentality kinda goes against the founding ideologies of this country doesn't it?

and i don't see anyone talking about " everything "...much less a "conspiracy".

if you're going to participate, you're going to have to do more than post trite sweeping generalizations.
 

zimv20

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so instead, we've got these?

- War on Activist (i.e. Liberal) Judges
- War on Filibuster
- War on Roe v Wade
- War on Privacy
- War on Social Security

and finally

- War on Iran
 

Xtremehkr

macrumors 68000
Jul 4, 2004
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- War on Fiscal Responsibility
- War on public education funding
- War on the enviroment
- War on political dissent

and

- War on the Constitution.
 

blackfox

macrumors 65816
Feb 18, 2003
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War on History.

Ideology, untempered by History (ie Realism), is bound to be undone by it.

See sig.

Every generation sees itself as singular: that the times are unique and they are wiser and more enlightened than those preceding them. Unfortunately, this has been said (and warned against) since Roman times.

How short-sighted and arrogant we are. And more so every day.