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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 6/15/08

Bush Plans Another War In Tribal Areas

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Rulers always staged a drama whenever they feel that they have been losing their importance. After realizing by Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf and Afghan President Hamid Karzai, the close buddies of US President George W. Bush that they have been losing importance they are now playing a new drama. Hamid Karzai issued the statement that his army can hit Taliban leaders in Pakistan.

Like most of the tribesmen I am also of the opinion that Bush is making his last-ditch to convert tribal areas into a battleground. I think this is clear to all that both rulers of Pakistan and Afghanistan have been breeding terrorism. They are just using this word for keeping the people suppressed.

According an AP story, Afghanistan Afghan President Hamid Karzai threatened Sunday to send Afghan troops across the border to fight militants in Pakistan, a forceful warning to insurgents and the Pakistani government that his country is fed up with cross-border attacks.

Karzai said Afghanistan has the right to self defense, and because militants cross over from Pakistan "to come and kill Afghan and kill coalition troops, it exactly gives us the right to do the same."

Speaking at a Sunday news conference, Karzai warned Pakistan-based Taliban leader Baitullah Mehsud that Afghan forces would target him on his home turf. Mehsud is suspected in last year's assassination of former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto.

"Baitullah Mehsud should know that we will go after him now and hit him in his house," Karzai said.

"And the other fellow, (Taliban leader) Mullah Omar of Pakistan should know the same," Karzai continued. "This is a two-way road in this case, and Afghans are good at the two-way road journey. We will complete the journey and we will get them and we will defeat them. We will avenge all that they have done to Afghanistan for the past so many years."

In Pakistan, Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani said his country is a sovereign state that wants good relations with its neighbors. But he said the Afghan-Pakistan border is too long to prevent people from crossing, "even if Pakistan puts its entire army along the border."

"Neither do we interfere in anyone else's matters, nor will we allow anyone to interfere in our territorial limits and our affairs," Gilani told The Associated Press. "We want a stable Afghanistan. It is in our interest. How can we go to destabilize our brotherly country? Such kind of statements will not be taken well by the people of both countries."

NATO's International Security Assistance Force said it was not going to comment.

Karzai has long pleaded for Pakistan and international forces to confront militants in Pakistan, but has never before said he would send Afghan troops across the border.

His comments Sunday came days after a Taliban attack on the prison in Kandahar, an assault that freed almost 900 prisoners and which Karzai said underscored the challenges the country still faces.

U.S. officials have increased their warnings in recent weeks that the Afghan conflict will drag on for years unless militant safe havens in Pakistan are taken out. Military officials say counterinsurgency campaigns are extremely difficult to win when militants have safe areas where they can train, recruit and stockpile supplies.

Karzai said in recent fighting in the Garmser district of Helmand province - where hundreds of U.S. Marines have been battling insurgents the last two months - that most of the fighters came from Pakistan.

Karzai called Pakistan a "brother government" and "friend," but also urged it to "act against those elements that are making Pakistan and Afghanistan insecure." He said it was better for Afghan troops to be killed during offensive operations into Pakistan than in militant attacks in Afghanistan.

Karzai's comments also come as Pakistan is seeking peace deals with militants in its borders, including with Mehsud.

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Muhammad Khurshid, a resident of Bajaur District, tribal areas situated on Pak-Afghan border is journalist by profession. He contributes articles and news stories to various online and print newspapers. His subject matter is terrorism. He is (more...)

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