Speaking of Pakistan

“Pakistan’s New Leader Denies Firefight as Mullen Confirms It”

NEW YORK, Sept. 26 — Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari on Friday denied that American and Pakistani forces exchanged fire along the Afghanistan border this week, even as the chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff acknowledged that the two sides engaged in a brief firefight.

Zardari told The Washington Post in an interview Friday that Pakistani border forces shot warning flares Thursday at two U.S. helicopters that he believes inadvertently crossed into Pakistani territory from Afghanistan. He said there was no gunfire exchanged between the two sides.

Senator Obama, in last night’s debate:

Nobody talked about attacking Pakistan. Here’s what I said.

And if John wants to disagree with this, he can let me know, that, if the United States has Al Qaida, bin Laden, top-level lieutenants in our sights, and Pakistan is unable or unwilling to act, then we should take them out.

Now, I think that’s the right strategy; I think that’s the right policy.

Now, admittedly, at least as he has worded it here, and, presumably, before, this is a slightly more nuanced (maybe) policy than what President Bush has employed, but, ultimately, they share the same view, to wit, that securing America involves the violation of the sovereignty of a nation-state, even a quasi-ally, such as Pakistan. Let us be thankful, at least, that this alleged firefight brought about no casualties. Senator Obama, supporting such policy as this, would, I suspect, not wish to fail to keep the promise that he made to the mother in Green Bay. Just as he wished to keep the promise not to support the USA PATRIOT Act? Just as he wishes to keep his word that he offers a saner foreign policy than McCain will, except for when he holds the same views vis-à-vis Russia and Iran?

It’s only one o’clock and, already, I feel as if I need beer.


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