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Are the Pakistanis Serious or Just Going Through the Motions?

Probably just going through the motions. The world is a little more complicated than the neo-cons understand.

An article in the Seattle Post Intelligencer says that Pakistan has stated that it will build a fence and plant land mines along its border in order to curb cross border militancy. On the surface, this appears very helpful and courageous... One wonders if the Taliban and Al Qiada will be given maps of the mine fields and if this action is not just really being done to prevent U.S. special forces from operating covertly inside Pakistan - in other words - if it is really being done to help the Taliban and Al Qiada. Musharraf is in a very precarious position with radical elements in his own country and has a very limited ability to act, especially since the Failure has stabbed him in the back and cut a deal with India allowing them to greatly accelerate their nuclear program. The neo-cons just don't get it.

Posted by Ray Guest at December 26, 2006 4:00 PM
Comment #200440

I do not see what specifically the neo-cons do not get or what you expect those few neo-cons left in government to do about it.

Pakistan is very precarious. It has been for a long time. It requires a careful balancing act and even with the most adroit handling might fall down like a house of cards. I do not think there is anybody who does not know this nor do I think there is anybody who has a solution, and that would include both neo-cons and liberals.

Posted by: Jack at December 26, 2006 4:56 PM
Comment #200446

Jack is right about there being very little we can do about Pakistan. I would not be suprised if Musharraf faced a major coup d’etat before long.

Jack is wrong about there not being many neocons left in the government. A lot of the big names are gone but still active behind the scene and they have lots of subordinants in many key positions left in the administration.

Posted by: jlw at December 26, 2006 6:11 PM
Comment #200447

There are plenty of neo-cons left. The neo-cons are in control of this regime and cut the deal with India that stabbed Musharraf in the back. This country is supposed to be against proliferation. But the neo-cons had to reinvent the wheel. They don’t get it.

Posted by: Ray Guest at December 26, 2006 6:16 PM
Comment #200451


You mean the nuclear deal with India praised on both sides of the political divide?

Whether or not the neo-cons are still in charge, I still do not get what they fail to get that other understands and/or what non-neocons would do differently re Pakistan.

Posted by: Jack at December 26, 2006 6:58 PM
Comment #200459

I am not finding a lot “praise” on my side of the political divide Jack. I am finding criticism from some moderate Republicans.

But it gets better. “Big Brother” was also sanctioning Indian firms to sell missile parts to Iran as part of the deal. I did not know about that. See: Lawmakers Concerned

Posted by: Ray Guest at December 26, 2006 10:20 PM
Comment #200463

Pakistan, and especially Musharraf, aren’t going to make a move that is not in their/his own best interests. We, meaning our government, should never expect anything more from other nations.

I see multiple benefits for Musharraf in this move.

First, it deters an Afghanistan exodus into Pakistan should a major push take place there to drive out the Taliban completely. Which, may be in the cards if the U.S. pulls out of Iraq, also beginning to be seen in the cards. Musharraf’s internal enemies are the Taliban or those aligned with Talaban belief systems.

Second, it cuts off an exit, should Musharraf decide in the future to make a major military push of his own against the extremists leaving in that region of his country.

Third, it likely appeases the U.S. which has been, or is about to, cut some U.S. cash flow into Pakistan. I would not be surprised if there isn’t a bill sent to Bush for the cost of laying that mine field in.

Posted by: David R. Remer at December 26, 2006 11:32 PM
Comment #200489
Pakistan, and especially Musharraf, aren’t going to make a move that is not in their/his own best interests. We, meaning our government, should never expect anything more from other nations.

…sounds so simple yet why are there still people (of every political persuasion) who don’t seem to be able to grasp this basic idea? Some of them even hold positions in elected office… we’re all doomed I tell you.

Posted by: loki at December 27, 2006 7:01 AM
Comment #200529

I think David is right about “self-interest,” a concept well within the neocon frame of reference. However, what remains is “what is the self-interest that drove the behavior?” The only benefit I see of the Iraq invasion has been to promote instability in the region, and instability allows for shift to happen.
We can only hope, in this instance, that this shift will bring Musharraf closer to western interests. I think the agreement with India does rattle the Pakistani nerves a bit but it’s too early to tell if they are moving to appease American interests or Islamicists interests. It will take more than one motion to prove a direction is being taken, so Wait and See is what I see here.

Having said that,

Ray, you forgot a very important word: “can”. More complicated than the neocons CAN understand…

I add that word not to disparage their intelligence, but to acknowledge an inability to see beyond their paradigm. Liberals seem confused and uncertain to most conservatives because of a willingness to accept into debate a valid premise from an opposing viewpoint. A true neocon can only accept the world to exist within their preconcieved framework. Without all elements of that framework in place, the world collapses into a non-neo-con construct, an unacceptable condition. Therefore, they are unable to understand the complexities of the world since many of those complexities exist outside of their paradigm.

Posted by: Dave1-20-2009 at December 27, 2006 2:51 PM
Comment #200643

Thanks all for your comments.


I find the Pakistani land mines interesting and I think that the neo-cons are clueless about the nuance, subtleties, and complexities of the world. Their niave belief that they could use the false power of military power to topple Saddam and be greeted as liberators - their naive faith in the false power of military supremacy and America’s ability to go it alone - that no constellation of forces in the world could stand against us - their ongoing naive belief that we can sustain our efforts in Iraq indefinitely without breaking… These are all symptomatic of their failures to grasp the complexities of the world - IMO.


I wrote this article mostly for fun - to wave a red flag and see if the bull would charge - he did - I used to do that on the farm too. The neo-cons need the same treatment that our bulls and bores got on the farm. A couple of cuts with a good sharp jackknife, a little fly spray, and they became much more peace loving.

Posted by: Ray Guest at December 28, 2006 12:30 PM
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