Monday, December 12, 2011
Pakistan forces notified after Afghan soldiers called in deadly NATO attack on Pakistani forces as US smells a setup
Pakistan Was Consulted Before Fatal Hit, US Says: Pakistani officials at a border coordination center gave the go-ahead to American airstrikes that inadvertently killed 24 Pakistan troops, unaware that their own forces were in the area, according to U.S. officials briefed on the preliminary investigation.
Afghan soldiers called in deadly NATO : Afghan troops who came under fire while operating near the Pakistan border called in the NATO airstrikes that allegedly killed 24 Pakistani soldiers at two posts along the frontier, Afghan officials said Sunday.
The officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the issue, said it's unclear who attacked the Afghan troops before dawn Saturday, but that the soldiers were fired upon from the direction of the Pakistani border posts that were hit in the strikes. The border area where the soldiers were operating contains a mix of Pakistani forces and Islamist militants.
Tensions among Pakistan, Afghanistan and the United States jumped a notch Monday, with Pakistan's prime minister warning there would be "no more business as usual" with Washington after NATO aircraft killed two dozen Pakistan troops. The Pakistani Taliban urged Pakistan to respond in kind to the airstrike, which NATO called a "tragic unintended" event.
Pakistan Halts Supplies to U.S.'s Afghanistan Troops After NATO Air Strike: Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar told Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in a phone call yesterday that the Nov. 25 attack by helicopter gunships triggered a “deep sense of rage” in the nuclear-armed nation, according to a foreign ministry statement. The incident reversed progress in repairing strained ties between the two countries, the statement said.
Pakistani TV channels showed trucks carrying shipping containers and fuel stranded near two Afghan border crossings, a traffic jam that in the past has left trucks and drivers vulnerable to attack by Islamic guerrillas. U.S. military officials have said their forces can sustain operations in Afghanistan for weeks in case of such a shutdown. Pakistan also ordered U.S. officials to leave an airbase in the southwest that has served as a launching point for Predator unmanned aircraft used against Taliban and allied guerrillas on both sides of the border.
US suspects NATO forces lured into deadly raid: The NATO air strike killed 24 Pakistani soldiers over the weekend in an apparent case of mistaken identity, The Associated Press has learned. J joint US-Afghan patrol was attacked by the Taleban early Saturday morning, and while pursuing the enemy in the poorly marked border area, seems to have mistaken one of the Pakistan troop outposts for a militant encampment and called in a NATO gunship and attack helicopters to open fire.
US officials say the account suggests the Taleban may have deliberately tried to provoke a cross-border firefight that would set back fragile partnerships between the US and NATO forces and Pakistani soldiers at the ill-defined border.
A day after NATO warplanes apparently struck a border checkpoint, accidentally killing at least 24 Pakistani soldiers, US-Pakistani relations stand on the brink of failure. Pakistan cut NATO supply trucks coming into Afghanistan and ordered America to close a secret airbase inside Pakistan.
But for many Afghans, their neighbor’s misfortune is their gain. In a call-in program on Radio Free Europe on Sunday morning, listeners were phoning in to chat about the upcoming Bonn Conference where world leaders will discuss the future of Afghanistan. Amid this conversation, which had nothing to do with the border incident, a caller phoned into to say that he’d like to get in touch with the NATO pilot who killed the Pakistani soldiers so he could give the pilot a car as a way of saying thanks. Sounds like NATO was set up!
Pakistan holds funerals for 24 troops after Afghan called NATO attack: Pakistan has retaliated by shutting down key NATO supply routes into Afghanistan. It says it has told the US to vacate a drone base on its soil. As NATO and US officials expressed regret, Pakistan denounced what it called “total indifference to international law and human life.”
It is time for us to go home and watch the country with our drones if we are concerned about negative future developments that could affect the US or western interests. Our troops have served magnificently. They have done what was asked of them. It is time to get them home where they are increasingly needed. They can deploy from their home base the US if needed.
The world is changing and on the fast track. We better respond to it and quickly or we are in serious trouble. That is another conversation but in this "small" instance we must get out and leave Afghanistan to its own demise. I suspect the corrupt Karzai will go down immediately but I do believe the Taliban has the strength and the connections in Pakistan and throughout Asia to take care of themselves and Afghanistan as long as we get the hell out.