Aid for the enemy

Reuters/Washington Post:

A U.S.-backed paramilitary force in Pakistan's lawless border area may be aiding Taliban fighters, according to American officials who say the support may cause Congress to freeze some security funds for Islamabad.

Signs that Pakistan's Frontier Corps is helping Taliban and al Qaeda-linked groups cross into Afghanistan only exacerbates U.S. frustration over Pakistan's plans to secure peace deals with fighters in that region, where Osama bin Laden is thought to hide.

"We cannot rely on Pakistan to stop the traffic of terrorists crossing that border despite the strong statements of its leaders," said Sen. Carl Levin, the Michigan Democrat who chairs the U.S. Senate's committee on armed forces.

Levin and some U.S. defense officials said Taliban fighters may also be getting assistance from Pakistan's army.

"If that's our intelligence assessment, then there's a real question as to whether or not we should be putting money into strengthening the Frontier Corps on the Pakistan side because if anything there's some evidence that the Pakistan army is providing support to the Taliban," Levin told reporters after visiting Afghanistan and Pakistan this week.


Pakistan's new government is acting more like an ally of the enemy than the US. We should consider suspending payments to them if we are not getting our moneys' worth. The problem that presents is that in other areas Pakistan is providing valuable assistance. Many of the Predator strikes against al Wade and Taliban leadership targets are flown from Pakistani bases. Most supplies are landed at Pakistani ports and are trucked into Afghanistan. Others are flown in over Pakistani air space. Iran is certainly not an alternative route, and the Russians and their former republics are not that reliable, much less convenient. These leaves us with finding a way to make Pakistan's assistance to the enemy more painful for them and us. That is the challenge.


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