Who is Kerry trying to fool? The Pakistani government didn’t help the U.S. find bin Laden. In fact, they were enraged that they had not been filled in on the details of the hunt, which was a wise decision in light of the jihadist ties of the ISI, the Pakistani spy service. How enraged were they? Look:
Pakistan: Prayers for Bin Laden in National Assembly — May 11, 2011
Bin Laden may have lived in Pakistan for over 7 years — May 7, 2011
Huge numbers of people in Pakistan hated the bin Laden raid as well:
Most Pakistanis grieve for Osama bin Laden — May 17, 2011
And this is still true:
Time to cut off Pakistan — Robert Spencer, May 17, 2011
“Aid cut to Pakistan will be unkind, argues Kerry,” by Anwar Iqbal in Dawn, January 24 (thanks to Lookmann):
WASHINGTON: Senator John Kerry, President Barack Obama’s nominee for secretary of state, said during his confirmation hearing on Thursday that cutting US aid to Pakistan, would be a “dramatic, draconian and sledge-hammer” measure.
Senator Kerry also said that Pakistan’s role in leading the United States to Osama bin Laden in Abbottabad had not been sufficiently appreciated.
In his first appearance before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in his new role, Mr Kerry told the senators he foresaw a “more rapid” transition in Afghanistan, allowing an accelerated withdrawal of US troops before the 2014 deadline.
But the senator, who headed the committee before his nomination, assured the Afghans that America’s counter-terrorism mission in their country would continue beyond 2014.
It was Senator Rand Paul, a new Republican face in the committee, who suggested cutting US aid to Pakistan “if they do not release Dr Shakil Afridi” who, he said, was imprisoned for helping the CIA in locating Osama bin Laden. The Al Qaeda leader was killed in a US military raid on his compound in Abbottabad on May 2, 2011.
Mr Kerry informed the senator that he had discussed this issue directly with President Asif Ali Zardari and Pakistan’s Army Chief Gen Ashfaq Pervez Kayani and like most Americans found it “incomprehensible if not repugnant, that somebody who helped us find Osama bin Laden is in jail in Pakistan”.
And “that bothers every American,” he added.
The senior US lawmaker, who stayed engaged with both Pakistan and Afghanistan as President Obama’s informal emissary during his first term, urged Senator Paul to also look at what the Pakistanis say.
“Pakistanis make the argument Dr Afridi did not know what he was doing, who he was specifically targeting “¦ it was like a business for him,” he said, adding that this was no excuse for keeping the physician in jail.
But he said that he would stay engaged with Pakistan rather than resorting to “a pretty dramatic, draconian, sledge-hammer” approach of cutting US aid to the country Senator Paul had suggested.
Senator Kerry told the committee that the US had “a lot of interests” in this relationship, such as using Pakistani roads for sending critical supplies to US troops in Afghanistan.
The United States, he noted, was also receiving valuable on the ground intelligence cooperation from Pakistan, which also helped the Americans locate OBL.