Pakistan more dangerous than Iraq ?

April 18, 2008

A Pakistani soldier guards a military post at a mountain peak in Swat districtThe United States, beginning with President George W. Bush himself, has this past two weeks trained its crosshairs on Pakistan, warning that another Sept. 11,  if it were to happen, would most likely not be plotted out of Iraq, Afghanistan or even Iran,  but Pakistan.

Like the steady drumbeat that has often preceded major moves by the administration, the threat from Pakistan’s Federally Administered Tribal Areas, considered the home of the top ranks of al Qaeda, has been articulated from the White House, at Congressional hearings and abroad.

Al Qaeda “won’t go away quietly in the night”, having found sanctuaries in ungoverned places, tribal areas and the Frontier Province of Pakistan, FBI director Robert Mueller said in the latest remarks on the matter, according to Pakistan’s Daily Times.

The issue is starting to create ripples, both at home in America and quite obviously in Pakistan, although for different reasons. For Bush critics at home, the barrage of statements is an admission, at the very least, that America is tied down in Iraq when it should be focusing on the threat along the Pakistan-Afghanistan border. At worst, it’s an admission that American blood and treasure have been spent in the wrong place.

In Pakistan, the reaction is measured but concern over U.S. intentions is unmistakable.

Pakistani tribesmen march during anti-government rally in Miranshah

“That the Americans are up to mischief is also evident from their extraordinary interest in the internal politics of Pakistan and formation of the government, which they are desperately trying to influence to suit their own objectives,” Pakistan Defence says in a posting arguing that Washington, faced with a strong new national coalition government in Islamabad, had stepped up covert and public pressure.

Raids in Pakistan’s tribal areas have already been carried out by U.S. drones,  the News said, warning that any further U.S. intervention in region will aggravate the considerable problems there, including the legacy of the militant armies set up to fight the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan.


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The US is the only country that employs terrorism as a tool of state policy. The enormously grave crimes the US has committed against humanity and is still committing prove beyond doubt that it is a criminal country to its core.

Posted by Mike Patterson | Report as abusive

It’s US GENERAL DEMPSEY facing all 3
Iraq Afghanistan and IRAN !
If we do or omit to do the wrong thing now, we end up a lot worse than 1974 Saigon .
To be more exact , we end up losing the US Infantry .
SEvere fighting will break out at the tipping point
when some troops are out and onthers not.
We end up with the surviving US Infantry taken
as human shields on
-undisclosed locations throughout the middle East
-Co-Located with Targets such as N-Missile sites,centrifuges,Mullah’s and Dictators

How to say goodbye at gunpoint of one an other ,ends
up with shots fired in most cases !

Look at the live blog in Washingtonpost about iraqdebate
Or look at the live blogging in absnews about DEM
debate ,i copy them all out and treat them effectivelywith homebuild searchengines. There you will read :
“If Democrats will take the course of action their way (GEN W Clark as an example) we can pull them all out within the 16 month .One by one their body bags.”

Posted by hlg | Report as abusive

Leave us alone Americans!
You people dont know anything about Pakistan.
America is just a big bully!

Posted by Zeeshan | Report as abusive

I am surprised to see no mention of the efforts Pakistanis and Pakistani forces are making towards improving this situation.

Did the author miss this story? frbIQwsE4hiHdjURlYsSpCgD904G2C06

Posted by Mustafa | Report as abusive

Pakistan more dangerous then Iraq? ABSOLUTELY NOT! Any journalist who has spent considerable time in the country and really traveled and interacted with the local community knows this to be far from the case. There are always two sides to a story: one which is being reported and debated by the media. And one which is the reality on the ground.

Yes Pakistan has been a place of refuge for many. For millions of Afghan refugees forced to flee due to Soviet-era invasion. A refuge for Kashmiris fleeing Indian repression. The Observer’s Jason Burke has said about the country:

“…Pakistan’s bizarre capacity to absorb shocks that would destroy most nations.”

For further insight please see 9/pakistan-is-so-stable-it-is-boring/

Posted by Syed | Report as abusive

Agreed…. Pakistan is no where close to Iraq Afghanistan.
Although Pakistan has its share of problems with militancy but it is a battle we are fighting because of american created mess in Afghanistan. If you want to reduce the risk of future attacks commit some forces and resources to fix the debacle called Afghanistan

Posted by M | Report as abusive

RUBBISH! absolutely rubbish!

Posted by Farooq | Report as abusive

Pakistan is not only more dangerous than Iraq, it is the most dangerous, destabilizing colonial and artificial entity on the planet.

Pakistanis have a lot of nuclear weapons, but most of them don’t have food (Roti) for the day.

The entire al-Qaeda organization is based in Pakistan, not necessarily in FATA as it is claimed by many, but in the rest of the country.

Pakistan is a country which is build up on hatered of Hindus, Jews and Christians.
Poverty, support for terrorists, growing population, radicalization of the society, religious extremism, fanaticism, secterianism, growing inflation etc. make Pakistan a ticking nuclear bomb.

Pakistan lives on terrorism, by milking the generous Uncle Sam and the Saudis. “War on terror” will end when there is no Pakistan, which can’t exist without the export of terrorism to her neighborhood and the rest of the world.

Posted by Kabura | Report as abusive

Imran Khan for prime minister

Posted by hudi | Report as abusive

I love how the U.S. always tries to make a little case for themselves before going in and invading a country for material reasons. What are they after in Pakistan, now, the uranium? Or do they just want to go there to bug India and China?

Posted by Uzma | Report as abusive

In a certain aspect Pakistan is definitely the most dangerous, before blasting me to oblivion read below, I am sympathetic with the Pakistani public but some facts and some US mentality contribute to some kind of deadlock situation.

i) Despite extreme bullying by US Gov and Pakistani Gov, the tribal areas in Pakistan continue to defy them (whether they are right or wrong is not being discussed) but the fact is that they have defied some really strong force and will continue to defy until the US and Pak gov back off or they are blasted to oblivion.

ii) This defiance is what scares the **** out of the US Gov, because the US Gov cannot go on full attack against these people as they risk of a severe response, so severe that they realize they won’t be able to withstand without sustaining some serious damage. Hence they are trying to make the world believe that these people are capable of another Sept 11 attack.

iii) Whether they are capable of doing it or not, is not the point here but the fact that these people are opposing US way of thinking is really a cause of concern to the US and US has always been happy with preemptive strikes and at the current moment they are weighing their options to be able to strike while justifying their attack.

The problem is that these people in the tribal areas have a habit of defying governments, and doing their own thing. A few of the terrorist minds may take advantage of that. US understands the later but not the former, and if they get impatient go for the attack many innocent lives will be lost in the name of defending the US against terrorist attacks.

I have no problem in defending my own country but if I have to wipe out hundreds of people then I am not at all OK with it.

Kabura has gotten it wrong, there is hardly any terrorism in Pakistan, the suicide bombings are more due to desperation and injustice, I can give a detail reasoning of that but that is going to make this comment into an article.

Posted by john cooper | Report as abusive

[…] The United States, beginning with President George W. Bush himself, has this past two weeks trained its crosshairs on Pakistan, warning that another Sept.Full source on Reuters: Read More? […]

Posted by Pakistan more dangerous than Iraq ? – NEWS.Tuls.Net | Report as abusive

I have always believed that Americans are good people, thank you Mr. john cooper for proving it yet again and don’t worry about Kabura he is just a Hindu fanatic, who has noting nice to say about Pakistan.

Posted by Zahed yaqub | Report as abusive

The World has many places that pose treats to security. Ranking them is a futile process, generated by internal political process, rather than a desire to promote better policy.
One of the threats that we confront are groups prepared to cause mass casualties. Their motivation and goal is not defeat of Western interests but to propagandise their legitimacy as an alternative to the Governments of the oil rich States of the Middle East. They will take refuge in any area that they can, Iraq, Pakistan, Indonesia,Bangladesh etc.
It is far from the only threat, a fundamentalist, nuclear armed Iran poses another.
It is the nature of order that it is confronted with multiple challenges from different locations at the same time.
Not least the internal threat from people such as Mike Patterson (above), who make such clearly deluded assertions to justify their inability to conduct rational debate.
Clearly terrorism, the use of force against civilians to achieve political goals, is a universal and fundamental reality of human political organisation.
Such partisan approach in confronting terrorism will actually foment it.

Posted by mike hunter | Report as abusive

[…] Source: Reuters Blog […]

Posted by Pakistan more dangerous than Iraq ? – | Report as abusive

Dear Sir,
Whatever America says, that proves to be wrong in
long way, and American policy is vice versa. Like American says Al-Qaeda is very dangerous for the world, but despite
several warning by Al-Zahwary and even Mr. Bin Ladin threat of open war against Pakistan nothing could be done except few Sui side bombs which kill few innocent citizens only

There is something wrong with american narration and actual story.


Posted by Askari Kazmi | Report as abusive

Pakistan is only Muslims country with nuke without US control in Pakistan religious fanatics from tribal area would become more powerful in Pakistani government. People graduated from madras’s will use them to achieve their religious agenda.
Pakistan does not accept refugee from afghan or kashmir they welcome terrorist in these tribal area.
Without US Pakistan will be like 3rd world African country so Pakistani must accept the truth and help US getting rid of religious fanatics,terrorist and madras’s from Pakistan

Posted by Austin | Report as abusive

Pakistan for long has been the major source of global terrorism. Initially, its victims were mostly Hindus, and thus no one really cared, particularly as Pakistan was considered a cold war ally. But now, the US has seen the error of its ways–the error of turning a blind eye to terrorism sponsored and emanating from Pakistan. The US should not be deterred by political considerations from carrying out attacks on Pakistani territories.

The US is the only country in the world with the moral, ethical, and military might to wipe the world of terrorism. Pakistan should be the focus of the US anti-terrorism efforts, but other terrorist countries and organizations should also be targeted. Home grown terrorist organizations in the US, such as those funding Islamic and Sikh terrorism should also be fought by the US.

The American anti-terrorism efforts are essential to bringing peace and prosperity to the world.

Posted by david | Report as abusive

I know, this low paid Indian writer wants hit’s with this topic on his page so I will give him anyway. It is the US which is most dangrous country in the world and India is comlicit in this crime, secretly helping.
Kabura, I think you still regretting Pakistan independece. Why don’t you snap out of it. Pakistan is sovereign country and it has every right to defend itself via conventional or nuclear.

Posted by Jaffery Adam | Report as abusive

Cooper writes: “The problem is that these people in the tribal areas have a habit of defying governments, and doing their own thing.”

So you blame the Pashtuns!
Was it also the Pashtuns who sold nuclear technology to the worst enemies of America and the rest of the peace loving free world?

Was it also the Pashtuns who let Osama bin Laden and his al-Qaeda in to Pakistan before and after 9/11?

Were the terrorists in London, Madrid and so many other places also Pashtuns and “tribal people”?

Either you are a Pakistani or a very naive westerner. Let the Pakis fool you, but not me, trust me!

Posted by Kabura | Report as abusive

checks & balances

1. preach democracy but promote & support anti-democratic foreign despots

2. subvert foreign democratic processes if you don’t like the ballot results

3. pay the price

Posted by Archivistangel | Report as abusive

Kabura writes: “So you blame the Pashtuns!
Was it also the Pashtuns who sold nuclear technology to the worst enemies of America and the rest of the peace loving free world?”

I am neither blaming them nor defending them, I am trying to shed light on the current situation. Neither sides are the angels nor neither of them are complete devils.

As I mentioned earlier which might not have been in clear words, the truth is that there are very few true terrorists out there who are very cunning at exploiting people. The tribal lords have the habit of defying authority and these Terrorists know that so they understand that they are quite safe among them.

I will try to give an example, the guy who went berserk in VT, he was wrong but do you start blaming his parents, and maybe start generalizing it to all Koreans or maybe even more extreme than that, all Asians??

If one is clever enough, then you would realize what I am trying to get at. There are a few handful of terrorists who have really caused a lot of damage, but what US is doing is generalizing the notion of terrorist applying it all to a certain region. There have been so many instances where there has been a lot of collateral damage. School kids, old people, women, have been killed during this war on terrorism and this is not being digested by these tribal people (there are several other factors too)

I can go on and on about how misconceptions have created a mess of situation, but at the end there are always certain groups of people who initially didn’t have anything to do with war or terror but because they were dragged into the whole mess, so now they have grudges against the US.

I am not sure how others would react but if cops invaded my house without proper protocol claiming that there was evidence that I had something/someone dangerous in my house and then they are unable to prove it later, I would be really really p***ed off.

Posted by John Cooper | Report as abusive

Oh, boy, a new war! I guess when you’re working up to a hundred years of war you can’t start too early.

Posted by Anarcissie | Report as abusive

John cooper:Kabura: did you read quran and what it means do you guys explain what is haram and halal
This will explain why the whole region is blamed
for Pakistan there is no doubt will be the cause for IIIrd World War then we’ll see real war on Terror.
There is saying don’t hate the player hate the game.I love cricket!!!!
any suggestions

Posted by Austin | Report as abusive

Thank you US for getting Al Qaeda a base in Pakistan. The mass in Pakistan is not essentailly for any bombing any innocent people even though thiers are being killed by drones. How come Iran, N Korea, and other US enemies. Cheney and those neo cons sitting out there plan to get Iran after Pakistan. Imagine the audacity of Pakistan offering China to pipe out gas from Iran. I guess that must have goy oily fatso Cheney mad. But I guess that is the plan. Now with Bush Mush team on the wane, bomb the crap out of FATA and what have you. With DEMS in, neo cons loose that leverage.

Posted by Devinder | Report as abusive

We will stand alongside Iran and thrawt any US agression. US is the only modern politico-terrorist state.

Posted by Asif | Report as abusive

It’s obvious that some of the people who responded to this topic, rode the little bus to school.

Posted by Patrick Hendrickson | Report as abusive

I fully agree that Pakistan is the most dangerous country in the world, even more dangerous than Iraq. What makes it so, is the presence of all the elements/factors, including particularly the protection that the political combine of the ISI-Military-Mullahs-Terror Groups-Madrassas and the presence of nuclear weapons. This country was never a country in the first place, but was an elixir of hatred, revenge, failure, fanaticism, disappointment, jealousy, and purposelessness, of which Pakistanis have drunk deeply and that manifested itself as a country, hence clean drinking water, education, agriculture and food, commerce, and overall development – other than terrorist bases and training camps – are not priorities. They are bewildered at their lostness, and by their inability to define themselves other than their relationship with other countries, such as with China ’an all-weather friend’ in whose trust the Chinese bask; with the US ’a vicious love-hate-fear relationship\'; with India ’hateful pagans that should be exterminated and which endeavor soaks the greatest part of their annual budget; with the Arab states coveting approval as ’great and loyal Muslims who developed the first Islamic bomb’. But this is not nation building. Living at peace with neighbors is, not murdering hundreds of them in bombings in Bombay and New Delhi, New York, London, and then holding them up as heroes and giving to the murderers the highest seat in Pakistan. Today this country is ridden with so many terrorist organizations including al Qeada, ungovernable, uncivilized, and backward people most, not all, living in the federally administered territories, where the only schools that would be welcomed is a terrorist training camp and a madrassa. God forbid that someone would build an engineering school in these areas. Is this nation building? This is a suicide mission; the problem is that the bomb is nuclear, and is strapped around the whole nation and when it explodes, the blowback would be devastating to all, particularly Pakistan, which would enjoy a mandated splintering. This country lacks the moral stamina and just governance to hold, let alone use nuclear weapons. It has shown, however, that it has the collective will, as we have seen in Bhutto, to chart a new future and to foreswear terror, and wars against their neighbors and ’friends’. Incidentally, Pakistan is China’s gateway to the Middle East, and to the oil resources and markets there. It isn’t in love with Pakistan; it is strictly a geopolitical and economic expedient. It has recruited Pakistan, for pretty cheap to secure and watch its western flank, but wait till the weather changes and we would be able to tell whether they are really all-weather friends. Oh, by the way, they are worse than pagans, because they don’t even believe in God.

Posted by Narine | Report as abusive

I think that quite a few of the comments are by Pakistanis posing as Americans or Brits. But they should not fear criticism in any case. Pakistan may irrevocably become a failed state, like Afghanistan and Iraq, if it makes no attempt to embrace modernity and civility.

Posted by david | Report as abusive

In the UK and Canada, most of the Pakistanis and Bangladeshis seem to hate the US. But I think most Pakistanis and Bangladeshis would run to the US in a heartbeat if given a green card. Therein lies the hypocrisy.

Posted by barry | Report as abusive

In 60s, CIA sponsorded Leopoldo Galtieri.
In 70s, CIA sponsorded Bin Laden.
In 80s, CIA sponsorded Saddam.
Now CIA sponsorded Dala Lama.

Posted by zy | Report as abusive

CIA did not sponsor no one they all asked for help.
Pakistan is receiving millions of dollars from US in Aid,Pakistani should utilize this aid to be successful and friendly state instead of creating terrorist sanctuaries in tribal area’s and radicalization of their younger generation to hate NON Muslims of world,US and the west

Posted by Austin | Report as abusive

The article is very interesting. For a Pakistan based journalist like myself, I find it very informative. The posts that follow it try to defend US or Pakistan. This is not the issue. I think what the writer has written is quite an incisive analysis of what is happening. A wake up call for us all

Posted by Kamal Siddiqi | Report as abusive

Well all the statements regarding terrorism and Pakistan, have any one thought about the sacrifices Pakistan has made fighting America’s holy war. How many innocent Pakistanis died in suicide bombing. How many soldiers we lost against terrorists. no one wants to do the statistics……..

Posted by WAZ | Report as abusive

It’s all very well and good to say Pakistan is our friend but the terrorists seem always to come from there some terrorist training camp in Pakistan why would we not target them. On the other hand there is more than enough evidence that people who come from the Madrases are learning their hatred from Saudi textbooks and I have yet to hear any type of targeting of Saudi Arabia. I think Pakistan is getting a bum rap the Saudis can have their cake and eat it too our corrupt government will make sure of that.

Posted by Alan | Report as abusive

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