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Pakistan's foreign secretary denounces drones, claims al Qaeda is dead



Talk about bad timing. Today, Pakistan's foreign secretary spoke out against US drone strikes, and said they were unnecessary as al Qaeda has been defeated in his country. From SAMAA:

Foreign Secretary Jalil Abbas said on Friday that Pakistan has eliminated al Qaeda network from its territory, SAMAA reports.

In a briefing to the Senate's Foreign Affairs Committee, Abbas said that security forces have eliminated al Qaeda network from Pakistan's territory.

Talking about drone attacks in the tribal region, Abbas said that these attacks are not acceptable for Islamabad. He said such attacks are violation of the United Nations charter, adding Islamabad has always opposed these attacks.

Unfortunately for Abbas and his reputation, the US launched a drone strike in North Waziristan today, and killed two Arab al Qaeda operatives: Sheikh Abu Waqas, a Yemeni explosives expert, and Abu Majid al Iraqi [see LWJ report, 2 al Qaeda operatives killed in latest drone strike in North Waziristan].



READER COMMENTS: "Pakistan's foreign secretary denounces drones, claims al Qaeda is dead"

Posted by Birbal Dhar at February 8, 2013 5:04 PM ET:

I'm guessing Jalil Abbas has been drinking too much of the illegal homebrew found commonly in supposed "dry" Pakistan. He's not the only one, even the former Pakistani interior minister Rehman Malik, is also known for his drunken comments, especially claiming that all non-muslims are terrorists.

Posted by Charles at February 8, 2013 6:35 PM ET:

The odd thing here is that the ISI and the Pakistani government don't get that Al Queda and the Taliban are the only groups that pose an existential threat to the Pakistani government.



The US does not. Even the Indians do not pose an existential threat to the Pakistanis. Pakistan has nothing India wants. The only time the Indians do anything is when the Pakistanis provoke them.



On the other hand, anyone who has studied the new Al Qaeda head -- Ayman al-Zawahiri--knows that he would not be satisfied if AQ/Taliban took over Afghanistan. Once that job was done they would want to grab Pakistan --because that would lead to the ultimate prize: Saudi Arabia.

Posted by Knighthawk at February 8, 2013 8:43 PM ET:

Foreign Secretary Jalil Abbas should consider a career in stand up comedy.

Posted by kimball at February 9, 2013 4:52 AM ET:


Al Qaeda or not, they are all brothers and the fight is now on everywhere, a bit lowlevel for time being
but more widespread than in a 100 yrs. Dictators
falling and unsure powerstruggle in muslim societies
from west africa to Bangla Desh and on.
China could be (if they wish) the longterm stability
factor.
The harbour and road projects in Belutchistan could
be tied to a proper democratic process in Belutchistan.
Leaves you Quetta,Karachi with more everyday killings
than any other mega cities on the globe. Enormous
profit from drugsmuggling, taxevasion, childlabour
terrorrism with huge slushfunds from Emirs in UAE
and a totally corrupt political system +kill targeting
of journalists and in general a state hijacked by the
military establishment. China will of course stay away and sit it out and so will the West.

Posted by naresh c. at February 9, 2013 8:40 AM ET:

http://dawn.com/2013/02/09/military-jets-pound-militant-hideouts-in-orakzai-13-killed/

Meanwhile, the Pakistani army is randomly killing people in order to fight 'bad taliban'.

What does the hypocrite Jalil Abbas say about that?
Is he only worried about killing 'good taliban'?

Posted by JRP at February 9, 2013 11:36 AM ET:

@ Charles . . . "the ultimate prize: Saudi Arabia"

With all due respect Charles, the ultimate prize for Al Qaeda in taking over Pakistan would be Pakistan's nuclear arsenal.

For a long time now I have posited that America's greatest threat is "GPT", meaning that by Gift, Purchase, or Theft AQ will get hold of nuclear bombs (plural) and decimate the West.

While limosine liberals and Obama-hating tea partiers rant about the supposed unConstitutionality of drone targeting overseas terrorists, a tiny few of whom happen to have U.S. Citizenship, die-hard AQ operatives are doing everything humanly possible to lay their hands on nuclear weapons.

Honestly . . . Is it going to make victims or their families feel any better that the terrorist who just killed or injured the victim held U.S. Citizenship?

When our Constitution starts turning itself into either a suicide pact or an instrument of surrender, it's time to draft a new set of political by-laws for the governance of the U.S.

Posted by AMERICAN at February 9, 2013 4:16 PM ET:

Jalil in Urdu and Arabic means a man of low moral character, a thief and a thug.
An appropriate name for Mr. Abbas.

Posted by irebukeu at February 9, 2013 10:54 PM ET:

Is it true that translated into English, his name comes out as Peter Bergen?

Posted by flloyd at February 10, 2013 4:39 PM ET:

if pak would enforce the laws in their tribal regions, drones wouldnt be needed, as for there rhetoric it will always remain the same.

Posted by ArneFufkin at February 10, 2013 7:35 PM ET:

@JRP: I wouldn't extend the extreme isolationist world view of Libertarians like Ron/Rand Paul across the conservative spectrum. Most conservatives and Republicans support the drone campaign, as do most on the Democrat side as well.

Obama knows that if not exactly "popular", this vehicle to confront our enemies nonetheless could never engender the controversy in this era that additional troop deployments necessary to satisfy the same objectives would.

I think the President has support for this campaign across the political divide and amongst the American populace - hence his wide employment of the tactic. I join Senator McCain's desire to require more accountability than currently afforded with the CIA directing the daily targeting - especially if American citizens are involved.

Posted by JRP at February 12, 2013 10:29 AM ET:

@Arnefufkin . . . I believe accountability to Congress already exists via the various committees and sub-committees that regularly meet either in public or in secret to go over CIA budgets and expenditures.

The risk in carving out quasi exmptions/immunities for terrorists who happen to be U.S. Citizens is to give AQ greater incentive than it already has to actually send agents over to the United States to recruit operatives willing to turn against their Country for any of the usual reasons that historically traitors give for allowing themselves to be turned.

Let's not forget just how easy it was for the 9/11 hijackers to enter America and conspire to harm us, very successfully as it turned out.

Posted by Leroy marnolejo at February 15, 2013 10:54 PM ET:

Ya, like you said bin laden was dead you cowards!!!!!

Posted by Charles at February 17, 2013 12:18 AM ET:

Posted by JRP

the ultimate prize for Al Qaeda in taking over Pakistan would be Pakistan's nuclear arsenal.


............


Well yes the nuclear arsenal would be pointed at Saudi Arabia. With nukes pointed at Saudi Arabia, Al Queda would have the upper hand with the Saudis.



You have to remember the ambition of the Bin Ladens. The grandfather was heavily involved in construction around the shrines in Saudi Arabia. His sons breathed the pure moslem power and glory of that business. At $100 billion dollars annually the Haji business in Saudi Arabia is the second biggest business in Saudi Arabia after oil.



Haji business folks and the oil business folks compete for power in Saudi Arabia



Bin Laden wanted to take Jihad to all the world. Hey, the more converts the more people become part of the Haji business because they have to pilgramage.



Ayman al-Zawahiri wanted to just concentrate on the Moslem world. With Bin Laden gone, the Moslem world is what its all about.