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So….General Kayani….

In which ISI safe house do you have Zawahiri stashed, anyway?

None dare call Pakistan a Rogue State….until last night.

We’re going to be hearing it a lot more often, I think. Which is good because it is reality.

Perhaps it is time to look at al Qaida through a historical, analytical, lens that questions “To what degree was it always a state-sponsored terrorist organization?”

Recommended Reading on Bin Laden’s Death:

CNAS Experts Comment On Death Of Osama bin Laden

Lieutenant General David Barno, USA (Ret.), Senior Advisor and Senior Fellow: “The death of Osama bin Laden marks the most significant U.S. victory to date in the U.S war on terrorism.  Its full consequences will play out in the coming weeks and months, but it is not too early to characterize this event as a true ‘game changer’ in a decade-long conflict. Bin Laden’s influence came not from his daily command and control of al Qaeda cells around the world, but from the inspiration that his iconic leadership provided. His taunting image, his fiery words and his seemingly unstoppable videos have all served to sustain the motivation of a growing franchise of like-minded groups. Bin Laden’s death unravels that critical motivational thread, one that is unlikely to be replaced.  Al Qaeda as a brand built on one man’s personality and apocalyptic vision has just suffered a blow that, over time, may well prove lethal.  For now, it remains a deadly, diffused organization – but its end may now be more imaginable.”

Foreign Policy (Daveed Gartenstein-Ross) –Don’t Get Cocky, America

Essentially, bin Laden sat at the top of a major multinational organization during the Afghan-Soviet war. Its members included fighters, aid workers, and other volunteers. It enjoyed a significant media presence, external donors, and widespread support. And when al Qaeda later engaged in a global fight against America, bin Laden and his companions similarly understood the media and the struggle for sympathy and allegiance throughout the Muslim world as crucial battlefields. In a 2005 letter to al Qaeda in Iraq leader Abu Musab al Zarqawi, bin Laden’s deputy Ayman al Zawahiri noted that “more than half of this battle is taking place in the battlefield of the media.” Zawahiri said that when it comes to attaining the caliphate, one of al Qaeda’s overarching goals, “the strongest weapon which the mujahidin enjoy, after the help and granting of success by God, is popular support from the Muslim masses.”

Col. W. Patrick Lang –#Are we there yet?

Any notion that some portion of Pakistan’s military and security institutions did not know of UBL’s long term presence in the suburbs of Islamabad is just silly.  Abbotabad is the home of Pakistan’s West Point.  Many retired officers live in the town.  We are to believe that the Pakistan equivalent of the FBI did not take an interest in this big compound with no telecommunications connectivity?  We are supposed to believe that?  I have too much respect for the Pakistanis to believe that.  They knew.  This is part of the phenomenon of “distancing” from the US that we have discussed so thoroughly here at SST.  If we think the Pakistanis are “allies,” then we are fools.

SWJ Blog –Bin Laden News Roundup, Bin Laden’s Abbottabad Compound and Robert Haddick’s A really bad day for bin Laden – and for Pakistan

Most notable was Obama’s willingness to shatter America’s relationship with Pakistan in order to take a gamble on getting bin Laden. For this raid is a black day for Pakistan and its relationship with the United States. As the White House background briefing on the raid makes clear, the United States kept the raid completely concealed from the Pakistani government. Combine this with the fact that bin Laden was found in a highly protected compound in a wealthy town near Pakistan’s capital, and a stone’s throw from a Pakistani military academy. Americans will be right to conclude that Pakistan was bin Laden’s long-time friend and not America’s. What little support Pakistan still enjoys in Washington will now likely melt away. Pakistan will have to look to China, its last friend, for the support it will need to survive.

That’s it.

2 Responses to “So….General Kayani….”

  1. Mercuto Says:

    Re: Pakistan and its role in the "War on Teror"

    It is generally in bad form to toot one’s own horn, but set forth below is, in part, my letter to The Nation magazine published on October 18, 2001:

    Second, we can enact all the money-laundering legislation in the world, but it will avail nothing unless the police and the judiciary are willing to enforce it. Bribery is rampant. Countries can profusely pledge support to the war on terrorism, be "shocked, shocked" when terrorist activities in their locale are brought to their attention and promptly "round up the usual suspects," as Pakistan appears to be doing right now.

  2. zen Says:

    Trumpet away! You were right, Mercuto.

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