Few officials — not even high-ranking ones — are mincing words about Pakistan anymore. Pakistan, for its part, surely has an injured, offended response in the works. “Karzai: Taliban can’t move finger without Pakistan,” by Deb Reichmann for the Associated Press, October 7:
As the war in Afghanistan hit the 10-year mark Friday, President Hamid Karzai claimed the Taliban are being propped up by neighboring Pakistan, saying the militants can’t lift a finger without the Pakistanis.
The war will only end when something is done to rout insurgents from their sanctuaries across the border in Pakistan, Karzai said in an interview with the BBC that aired on Friday, exactly 10 years after the U.S. and its allies invaded Afghanistan on Oct. 7, 2001. […]
“Definitely, the Taliban will not be able to move a finger without Pakistani support,” Karzai said. “The fact is the Taliban were and are stationed, in terms of their political headquarters and operational headquarters, in Pakistan. We all know that. The Pakistanis know that. We know that.”
Militant sanctuaries in Pakistan won’t go away unless the government of Pakistan cooperates with Afghanistan and the international community finds an effective way to remove the hide-outs, he said.
“We’re not saying this in a manner of accusation and reprimand,” Karzai added, trying not to inflame already strained relations between the two nations. “We are saying this in a manner of a statement intended towards a solution of the problem.”
Pakistan maintains it cut off ties to the Taliban and other militants following the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan, but Washington and Kabul say otherwise.
President Barack Obama said Thursday that Pakistan was “hedging its bets” by maintaining ties to militant groups trying to undermine the Afghan government. Obama also acknowledged that the United States has not been able to persuade Pakistan that the U.S. goals of a stable Afghanistan pose no threat to Pakistan….
Pakistan wants to be in control; it wants a docile satellite in Afghanistan in order to expand its influence in the region, particularly against India.