US will have to strike a new deal with Gen. Kiyani to win Afghan war

February 29th, 2008 - 10:00 pm ICT by admin  

Pervez Musharraf

Washington, Feb. 29 (ANI): In the current scenario when Pervez Musharrafs power has weakened after February 18 polls, the US will have to strike a new deal with Pakistan Army Chief General Ashfaq Kiyani to win the Afghanistan war.

But Kiyani must tread carefully lest he be seen as another American puppet. He has agreed to closer intelligence sharing among Pakistani, Afghan and US agents on the mythical Pakistan-Afghan border and quick responses by US-trained Pakistan Special Forces, United Press International has said in its report.

The US will continue remote-controlled (from Nevada-based cockpit by satellite) Predator drone airstrikes on targets generated by agents on the ground in North and South Waziristan and Bajaur. Yet this is where a WMD attack on the United States is being planned.

The three strongest parties to emerge from Pakistan’s relatively free elections are now haggling over what kind of coalition to put together among ideological opponents.

Together, they can impeach Musharraf and force the election of a powerless civilian President. But the Bush Administration wants Musharraf to stay in the job even with much reduced authority.

More worrisome for US and NATO objectives in Afghanistan, the two victorious partiees — the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz and the Pakistan People’s Party’s — want to talk and negotiate with Taliban, not fight.

Taliban reacted with a “unilateral cease-fire,” a decision Islamabad’s cognoscenti say was the work of the still all-powerful Inter-Services Intelligence agency, the original sponsoring entity that mid-wifed Taliban and shepherded its conquest of Afghanistan in the early 1990s.

Replacing US influence in Pakistan — or still competing for it — is Saudi Arabia and its protege Nawaz Sharif, the man who was deposed by Musharraf in 1999 and exiled to the Saudi kingdom for 10 years.

The new triumvirate that is gradually superseding President Bush’s “most trusted non-NATO ally” is made up of ISI, Saudi Arabia and Sharif. This does not bode well for the future of NATO in Afghanistan.

President Hamid Karzai’s government in Kabul controls only a third of the country while a resurgent Taliban is now solidly entrenched in 10 percent of the narco-state, according to US Director of National Intelligence Michael McConnell. And tribal leaders call the shots in the rest of a barren, medieval country. (ANI)

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