Is Great Satan getting mean and scary in the Land Of The Pure?
Aside from the Pak Military's risible concerns about their precious magical (fakebelieve?) sovereignity - including those notorious Taliban rich unAdministered Tribal areas - Great Satan is putting the PAK in AFPAK - and prepping to storm al Qaeda's sanctuaries in Pakistan:
Not so long ago, 44 kinda sorta ruled out sending
"U.S. ground forces into Pakistan. Instead, the White House said, America’s clandestine operations there would be waged solely by remote-control — with Predator and Reaper drones. “There is a red line,” said special envoy Richard Holbrooke. “And the red line is unambiguous and stated publicly by the Pakistani government over and over again: No foreign troops on our soil.”
"Yet today, three U.S. soldiers were killed and two more were wounded by an improvised bomb in Pakistan. The area was known “as a Taliban stronghold,” the New York Times notes. But the “Pakistani military had declared cleared of the militants.”
"It’s another sign that America’s once-small, once-secret war in Pakistan is growing bigger, more conventional, and busting out into the open. The U.S. Air Force now conducts flights over Pakistani soil. U.S. security contractors operate in the country. U.S. strikes are growing larger, more frequent, and more deadly; the latest attack reportedly involved 17 missiles and killed as many as 29 people. Billions of dollars in U.S. aid goes to Islamabad. And now, U.S. forces are dying in Pakistan.
"Which begs the question:
"When are we going to start treating this conflict in Pakistan as a real war — with real oversight and real disclosure about what the hell our people are really doing there?
"Maybe at one point, this conflict could’ve been swept under the rug as some classified CIA op. But that was billions of dollars and hundreds of Pakistani and American lives ago.
"According to the U.S. Embassy in Islamabad, the American forces were there merely “to attend the inauguration ceremony of a school for girls that had recently been renovated with U.S. humanitarian assistance.” These guys were merely trainers part of the small cadre — maybe a hundred or so — of U.S. special forces in Pakistan, beefing up the local Frontier Corps’ counterinsurgency skills.
"As the Long War Journal notes, “The soldiers are not supposed to conduct military operations alongside the Frontier Corps units.”
"But according to Washington Post columnist and de facto government spokesperson David Ignatius, “the improved U.S.-Pakistani cooperation extends to other activities [beyond training] as well. A senior Pentagon official said Tuesday that in Bajaur, a tribal area bordering Afghanistan, the two countries’ military operations were ‘much more coordinated.’”
"American forces have found themselves in combat within Pakistan’s borders before. Back in 2001, a pair of Rangers were killed in a Blackhawk crash in Pakistan. In 2008, a raid by U.S. special operations troops killed as many as 20 Pakistanis.
"There are also a host of American private security contractors in Pakistan. Their exact roles are murky. But their presence is well-known, and deeply controversial. Which is why the Pakistani Taliban not only took credit for today’s bombing — but also claimed that the slain U.S. troops were, in fact, guns-for-hire. “The Americans killed were members of the Blackwater group,” a Taliban spokesman tells Dawn.
"One operation the U.S. contractors are most certainly involved in: the drone strikes on suspected militant camps. There have been 12 reported attacks just in 2010 — a huge increase over last year’s rate of about one strike per week.
"And the drones show no signs of letting up. Five aircraft supposedly participated in the most recent attack. If press accounts are accurate, the drone unleashed almost their full load of missiles. Each Reaper unmanned aircraft carried four Hellfire missiles. This attack reportedly included 17 or more Hellfire hits.
Pic "Getting medievel on their assets"