Re: Remove most of the Troops from Iraq and send to Afgahnistan/ Pakistan.
- You keep beating this drum. The problem is not a simple one.
- Of course we want bin Ladin dead.
- Puting more troops in Afghanistan won't improve the situaton if he isn't there. If we put more troops there, he will stay in Pakistan (where he probably is anyway)
- Pakistan: US occupation of Pakistan is a non-starter. If you think invading Iraq was a bad idea, then there's absolutely nothing to recommend an invasion of Pakistan. Far more incipient extremist hatred/antipathy toward the US waiting to be stirred up. Nuclear armed. Friends with China, a nation which would LOVE to get us tied up in a true military quagmire, and would provide Pakistan all the toys they need to make it happen. Musharraf--yes, a dictator. But, as dictators go, he's a benign one. Extremists in his country (radical Islamists, who believe he is in the pocket of the US) have tried to kill him many times, and may one day succeed. He is on the razor's edge, and if he fals, the nation may well falll into the hands of the radicals--and they'll control the nukes. Musharref has not done as much as we'd like to reign in Al Qaeda, but he has done a lot. More Al Qaeda bad guys have been arrested in Pakistan than anywhere else--all at considerable risk to Musharraf and his government, as these guys are seen as heroes by a large percentage of the population there. Musharraf's deal with the tribal elders in some areas has not worked out--they have not held up their end of the bargain (keeping Al Qaeda out), and it is an area that I'm sure is being discussed at the highest levels (it's probably why the VP is in the region).
Patience. Masses of troops are not the answer to the bin Ladin problem right now. If US leaders were to continually fixate on just bin Ladin, he would increase in importance. Better to publically downplay his importance while quietly working to take care of things. Maybe that's what's being done.