Smart power: Hillary dumps on Bush, accuses Pakistanis of protecting Al Qaeda

posted at 5:13 pm on October 29, 2009 by Allahpundit

Like Geraghty says, get used to this. Never mind that The One’s kept up Bush’s policy of aggressive drone strikes inside Pakistan and is set to deploy thousands more U.S. troops right next door. If she can buy some cheap comity with her Pakistani audience by dumping on the crazed wingnut hawk who preceded him, she’ll do it every time. Message to foreign nations from the secretary of state: Be sure to check the president’s party affiliation before deciding whether anti-Americanism is justified.

As a way of repudiating past U.S. policies toward Pakistan, Clinton told the students “there is a huge difference” between the Obama administration’s approach and that of former President George W. Bush. “I spent my entire eight years in the Senate opposing him,” she said to a burst of applause from the audience of several hundred students. “So to me, it’s like daylight and dark.”

That’s from an AP report quoted by former Cheney advisor John Hannah, who wonders, “Does anyone advising President Obama and the secretary of state really believe that this kind of partisanship and trash-talking abroad about another American president is really going to buy us much long-term goodwill among either our friends or our adversaries? Do they imagine that this sort of thing really helps to advance U.S. national interests?” Answer: Who cares? The more long-term goodwill they buy, the more it might redound to the advantage of future Republican presidents. Better to make goodwill conditional on the president’s party so ye olde talking point about “improving America’s image in the world” can be trotted out for each and every election going forward.

But that wasn’t her only diplomatic masterstroke of the day:

In Lahore, Pakistan, today Secretary of State Hillary Clinton delivered a blunt message to six prominent Pakistani newspaper editors.

Asked by Asha’ar Rehman, an editor of Dawn, why the US war on terror is so localized to Pakistan, Clinton did not mince words.

“Al-Qaeda has had safe haven in Pakistan since 2002,” she said. “I find it hard to believe that nobody in your government knows where they are and couldn’t get them if they really wanted to.”

Clinton allowed, “maybe that’s the case; maybe they’re not gettable. I don’t know.”

The State Department’s already gone into damage control mode as the buzz over what she said builds in Pakistan. In her defense, if by “government” she means Pakistan’s intelligence service, which is notorious for colluding with jihadist nutbag groups like Lashkar e-Taiba, then this isn’t a crazy charge to make at all. But if you’re going to make it, why on earth would you make it so offhandedly, without backing it up with evidence? And why on earth would you make it now when the Pakistani leadership’s just ordered a risky military offensive in South Waziristan to hammer the Taliban? Pakistani troops are dying in an effort to liquidate these cretins, much to the consternation of citizens over there, and here’s this idiot publicly accusing the government of basically hiding Osama. Like Powerline says, “Does either of the above instances represent how a competent, professional diplomat would behave?”


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“Does either of the above instances represent how a competent, professional diplomat would behave?”

Well…Hillary and competent professional go together like…well Hillary herself said it best:
““So to me, it’s like daylight and dark.”

Hillary needs to know that Pakistan does not think to much of her boss either:

Change! Thousands of Pakistani Islamists Protest Barack Obama
http://gatewaypundit.blogspot.com/2009/01/thousands-of-pakistani-islamists.html

“We’ve got to get the job done there and that requires us to have enough troops so that we’re not just air-raiding villages and killing civilians, which is causing enormous pressure over there.”

Barack Obama
On US troops in Afghanistan
August 14, 2007


Thousands of Islamists protested Obama’s “first gift” to Pakistan.
Obama air-raided villages and killed innocent civilians in his first week in office.

Much of Pakistan’s anti-Americanism comes from the drone strikes,taking on al-qaeda/Taliban,and the appearance that the Pakistani government is a puppet for America due to the massive amount of aid we give them.

All of these were policies under Bush and all of these are being continued by the Obama administration.

Would be real helpful and go to Hillary’s credibility if she could actually outline what the differences are in Obama’s policies than Bush’s.

Baxter Greene on October 29, 2009 at 6:49 PM

macncheez on October 29, 2009 at 6:23 PM

Hey, we might be related!

MikeA on October 29, 2009 at 6:51 PM

“I find it hard to believe that nobody in your government knows where they are and couldn’t get them if they really wanted to,” she told a group of newspaper editors during a meeting in Lahore.

“Maybe they are not ‘get-at-able’. I don’t know,” she said.

Clinton’s pointed remark was the first public gripe on a trip aimed at turning around a U.S.-Pakistan relationship under serious strain, but bound in the struggle against religious extremism.

“I am more than willing to hear every complaint about the United States,” Clinton said, “”but this is a two way street.

“If we are going to have a mature partnership where we work together” then “there are issues that not just the United States but others have with your government and with your military security establishment.”
Clinton, who has sought to use her own personal outreach to overcome rising anti-American sentiment in Pakistan, earlier repeated her conviction that the two countries’ common interests far outweighed their differences.

“I am well aware that there is a trust deficit,” Clinton told students at a “townhall-style” meeting at Government College University in Lahore.

“My message is that’s not the way it should be. We cannot let a minority of people in both countries determine our relationship.”journeyintothewhirlwind on October 29, 2009 at 4:17 PM

This is from the Reuters version.

IMO these comments should have been made behind closed doors and not in front of a room full of reporters. And the one about Osama I think shouldn’t have come out of her mouth. I don’t see how it improves how the government or the people of Pakistan think about the US. She talks about a “trust deficit” and preceding it she accuses them of harboring Osama?! She is showing HER trust deficit. How does she work with them now? Why didn’t she praise the Pakistani army for finally going on the attack?

And then she blames the minority (repubs) in the US for the “trust deficit? Really?

Just unbelievable. I miss Condi.

journeyintothewhirlwind on October 29, 2009 at 6:56 PM

Do Obama and his gaggle of fools have any solutions to anything other than blaming Bush for everything under the sun?

rplat on October 29, 2009 at 6:56 PM

That picture is an INSULT to all free people and to all women.

Schadenfreude on October 29, 2009 at 6:58 PM

She needs to learn to ululate.

justltl on October 29, 2009 at 7:02 PM

…and her husband spent eight years doing nothing to protect us from the likes of UBL or any other terrorists….glad she is able shed that guilt. What an administration of morons!!!!!! God protect us…

PhreeMan on October 29, 2009 at 7:20 PM

Come to think of it, there is one big difference between the Obama administration and the Bush administration in dealing with the Afghanistan/Pakistan region.
Hillary and the “smart power” crew no longer believe that the Taliban are a threat:


New White House spin: Taliban not really an enemy, has role in Afghanistan’s future

posted at 5:14 pm on October 8, 2009 by Allahpundit
http://hotair.com/archives/2009/10/08/new-white-house-spin-taliban-not-really-an-enemy-has-role-in-afghanistans-future/

Bowing to the reality that the Taliban is too ingrained in Afghanistan’s culture to be entirely defeated, the administration is prepared, as it has been for some time, to accept some Taliban role in parts of Afghanistan, the official said. That could mean paving the way for Taliban members willing to renounce violence to participate in a central government — though there has been little receptiveness to this among the Taliban. It might even mean ceding some regions of the country to the Taliban

Man,this sure will make it a lot easier to make friends in Pakistan now that the Obama administration have decided that the Taliban are not the enemy and as long as they give their word not to work with al-qaeda anymore, everythings kosher.

Of course the reality of the situation is a lot different than the new White House spin:


The Long War Journal: Analysis: Al Qaeda is the tip of the jihadist spear

Written by Thomas Joscelyn & Bill Roggio on October 8, 2009 2:12 PM to The Long War Journal
Available online at: http://www.longwarjournal.org/archives/2009/10/analysis_al_qaeda_is.php

General Stanley McChrystal and other top military officials do not believe the strategy outlined above is adequate. The McChrystal plan for Afghanistan calls for America to wage a counterinsurgency campaign similar to that which evolved in Iraq. Underlying the McChrystal plan is the belief that if the US and its coalition partners prevent the Taliban and its allies from returning to power in Afghanistan, then this will necessarily weaken al Qaeda’s allies and, in turn, al Qaeda itself. In the military’s view, al Qaeda is not a standalone problem but instead one head of several on a jihadist hydra.

In the piece below, we take a look at the insurgency in Afghanistan more closely – from al Qaeda’s perspective. We do not think that a shift to a predominately counterterrorism campaign utilizing airstrikes and the like is sufficient to beat back the threat to America’s interests. In fact, we argue that such thinking is rooted in a dangerous ignorance of al Qaeda and our terrorist enemies. Al Qaeda was never a self-contained problem that could be defeated by neutralizing select individuals – even though capturing or killing senior al Qaeda members surely does substantially weaken the network.

Instead, Osama bin Laden and his cohorts deliberately fashioned their organization to be the tip of a much longer jihadist spear.

Well Hillary may be over there opining about “turning pages” but Pakistan is doing anything but:

Right at the Edge
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/07/magazine/07pakistan-t.html?_r=2&ref=world&pagewanted=print

By DEXTER FILKINS


Whenever I hear about Pakistan fighting the taliban I remember this quote: “I cannot lie to you,” Namdar said, smiling at last. “The [Pakistani] army comes in, and they fire at empty buildings. It is a drama — it is just to entertain….America’

“The army agreed to compensate the locals for collateral damage,” the official said. “Where do you think that money went? It went to the Taliban. Who do you think paid the bill? The Americans. This is the way the game works. The Taliban is attacked, but it is never destroyed.


“It’s a game,” the official said, wrapping up our conversation. “The U.S. is being taken for a ride.”

The Pakistan government has a long history of making deals with the tribes to give the impression they are taking the jihadist seriously so that they can continue to get money from the US.
They would give us intel and a big fish every now and then but the main leaders of al-qaeda and the Taliban would always “get away”.

Pakistan’s ISI has a long history of working with the Taliban:

Afghan Strikes by Taliban Get Pakistan Help, U.S. Aides Say

By MARK MAZZETTI and ERIC SCHMITT
NYTimes
March 26, 2009

The American officials said proof of the ties between the Taliban and Pakistani spies came from electronic surveillance and trusted informants. The Pakistani officials interviewed said that they had firsthand knowledge of the connections, though they denied that the ties were strengthening the insurgency.

American officials have complained for more than a year about the ISI’s support to groups like the Taliban. But the new details reveal that the spy agency is aiding a broader array of militant networks with more diverse types of support than was previously known — even months after Pakistani officials said that the days of the ISI’s playing a “double game” had ended.


…not only intelligence help and cover, but also funding


Diverse Sources Fund Insurgency In Afghanistan

Restricting Cash Flow Difficult, U.S. Says
By Craig Whitlock
Washington Post Foreign Service
Sunday, September 27, 2009

U.S. officials said there is no evidence today that the Saudi, UAE or other Gulf governments are giving official aid to the Taliban. They said they suspect that Pakistani military and intelligence operatives are continuing to fund the Afghan insurgency, although the Islamabad government denies this.

The relationship between the jihadist and the ISI is well known but that does not mean that it is smart to hand the Taliban a propaganda victory by making accusations against the government in public.

I know that sometimes we have to work with demons to try and defeat the devil but the democrats complained about this for years and now that they are in charge, they are pretty much doing the same thing.
What happened to “hope and change”?

Even now the deals the Pakistani government is cutting with the tribes helps certain tribes gain more power and does nothing to stop their main objective of taking over Afghanistan:

Pakistan Cuts Deals With Anti-American Militants
Monday , October 19, 2009

DERA ISMAIL KHAN, Pakistan

Both allow their lands to be used by fighters who cross into Afghanistan and are loyal to the Mullah Omar, the head of the Afghan Taliban. Omar is believed to be living in Pakistan.

As the region’s British colonial rulers did decades ago, the army is exploiting tribal rivalries to try to gain control in the region. Nazir is an old-time opponent of the Mehsud tribe, while Bahadur is reportedly angry over the appointment of Hakimullah as Taliban chief.


The Long War Journal: Pakistan carefully advances in South Waziristan

Written by Bill Roggio on October 20, 2009 12:46 AM to The Long War Journal

Both Bahadar and Nazir sponsor al Qaeda, the Afghan Taliban, and Pakistani jihadi groups and host training camps for these Islamist terror groups. Powerful elements withing Pakistan’s military establishment view Nazir, Bahadar, the Haqqani family, and other groups as ‘good’ Taliban as they do not attack the state but focus their efforts on jihad in Afghanistan.

I think the country would be a lot better off hearing and seeing some concrete measures to stop this corrupt and dangerous game by Pakistan .
Instead we get more immature rhetoric about how much smarter they are and how everything is still Bush’s fault.

The democrats will probably get as much success from “turning the page” in Pakistan as they got from their “reset” button in Russia that has produced nothing but Obama looking like a naive,self absorbed narcissist.

Baxter Greene on October 29, 2009 at 7:22 PM

Moments like this are what make me all the more incredulous at the people who several months ago acted like Cheney all of a sudden decided to start beating up on poor wittle Obama unprovoked.

OneGyT on October 29, 2009 at 7:37 PM

Ya know what. I have a SUPER SERIOUS problem with our Secretary of state wearing those freaking head coverings. I know about all this cultural sensitivity BS. But she is a part of our government and should be on equal footing when she’s visiting foreign places. The whole point of them is to mark the woman as the woman. To mark the woman as less than. But she is not just a woman and she is not “less than”. She is the Secretary of State of the United States of America.

I know I’m going to catch flack, but so be it. It really bothers me. It was one thing to wear it as the wife of a president, but now that she has her own office I think it takes away from the image of strength we are supposed to present abroad. Then again, look at the administration we have.

xax on October 29, 2009 at 7:42 PM

Of course every stance or promise Obama makes comes with an expiration date.

Wanting to negotiate peace with the Taliban is a 180′ turn from where Mr. 57 states stood less than a year ago:

Obama’s stance now:

the administration is prepared, as it has been for some time, to accept some Taliban role in parts of Afghanistan, the official said.

It might even mean ceding some regions of the country to the Taliban…

Obama’s stance when he needed votes and to look hawkish:


Video: Candidate Obama knocks Musharraf for … signing peace treaties with the Taliban

posted at 9:40 pm on October 8, 2009 by Allahpundit
http://hotair.com/archives/2009/10/08/video-candidate-obama-knocks-musharraf-for-signing-peace-treaties-with-the-taliban/

More flashback fun via Omri Ceren, remembering the days when the Taliban were an intractable jihadist opponent rather than the plucky band of Afghan patriots we’ve come to know and respect.

And nobody has more success negotiating with terrorist than democrats:

U.S. holds out olive branch to non-violent Taliban
By Sue Pleming and David Brunnstrom Sue Pleming And David Brunnstrom
http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20090331/ts_nm/us_afghan_conference/print

THE HAGUE (Reuters) – The United States offered Taliban fighters who renounce violence in Afghanistan an “honorable form of reconciliation” on Tuesday as part of a revamped strategy to tackle a deepening insurgency.

The Taliban’s response to “smart power”:

U.S. reconciliation offer “lunatic”: Taliban spokesman
Wed Apr 1, 2009 5:51pm EDT
http://www.reuters.com/article/topNews/idUSTRE5303ED20090401?feedType=RSS&feedName=topNews
By Sayed Salahuddin

KABUL (Reuters) – Taliban insurgents reject a U.S. offer of “honorable reconciliation,” a top spokesman said on Wednesday, calling it a “lunatic idea” and saying the only way to end the war was to withdraw foreign troops.

I think the N. Korean’s have a pretty good take on who Hillary and her representation of “smart power”:

“We cannot but regard Mrs. Clinton as a funny lady as she likes to utter such rhetoric, unaware of the elementary etiquette in the international community,” a Foreign Ministry spokesman said, according to North Korean media. “Sometimes she looks like a primary schoolgirl and sometimes a pensioner going shopping.”


“Yes We Can!!!!”

Baxter Greene on October 29, 2009 at 7:44 PM

glad she told them, ‘hey I find it hard to believe no one in your govt knows where they are and couldnt go take care of them if they wanted to’ paraphrasing

thats a helluva lot more than TOTUS is gonna say

hand em over!

ginaswo on October 29, 2009 at 7:45 PM

“Al-Qaeda has had safe haven in Pakistan since 2002,” she said. “I find it hard to believe that nobody in your government knows where they are and couldn’t get them if they really wanted to.”

Hmmm. I can’t find anything wrong with that statement whatsoever, and in fact agree.

Now, as for the diplomacy side of things-no go.

Dr. ZhivBlago on October 29, 2009 at 7:46 PM

PS As a Catholic I do not find it odd for a woman to cover her head in a place of worship, not sure why those MSMs like to note it as though Hill is kowtowing to Sharia or some shxt

ginaswo on October 29, 2009 at 7:46 PM

In her defense

CLASSIC ALLAHPUNDIT! :)

Sharke on October 29, 2009 at 8:10 PM

Well,I guess Hopey/Changey still has the bombing plans
on zee table to bomb Puck is Stan then!!

canopfor on October 29, 2009 at 8:17 PM

As a Catholic I do not find it odd for a woman to cover her head in a place of worship, not sure why those MSMs like to note it as though Hill is kowtowing to Sharia or some shxt

Just a guess…She’s not Muslim and she is kowtowing to Sharia law. Time to act like a Head of State, Madam Secretary. Or just get a burqha

indypat on October 29, 2009 at 8:20 PM

You can tell she’s being coached by slick.

mike_NC9 on October 29, 2009 at 8:22 PM

PS As a Catholic I do not find it odd for a woman to cover her head in a place of worship, not sure why those MSMs like to note it as though Hill is kowtowing to Sharia or some shxt

ginaswo on October 29, 2009 at 7:46 PM

Hillary ain’t Catholic or Lutheran. She is a MethoBaptiCostal at best. St. Paul’s letter to Corinth means diddly squat to her.

OmahaConservative on October 29, 2009 at 8:25 PM

OmahaConservative on October 29, 2009 at 8:25 PM

In fact, I bet Hillary’s UMC upbringing is so fuzzy, she really believes Allah is the one true god.

OmahaConservative on October 29, 2009 at 8:29 PM

Doesn’t compute: She really does show some huevos to the Pakis (something that would make O cringe) but toes the O line when trashing W. She must be a very frustrated old woman. I wonder what she really wants to do or say?!?

PaCadle on October 29, 2009 at 8:34 PM

As a way of repudiating past U.S. policies toward Pakistan, Clinton told the students “there is a huge difference” between the Obama administration’s approach and that of former President George W. Bush. “I spent my entire eight years in the Senate opposing him,”

Or…there aren’t that many differences at all and you opposed Bush and now support Obama on purely cynical political grounds and you’ve made a career of playing politics with our national security and lives of our troops.

29Victor on October 29, 2009 at 9:04 PM

Come on AP, give my girl a break:

1. It looks like she was responding to a q. re: diff. btw bush & Obama, so of course she is going to draw some sharp contrasts

2. I don’t disagree w/ her on her charge that they know more a/b them’ terrorist thugs than they are willing to admit. So, let’s start calling them out.

Happy birthday hillster

dee4hill on October 29, 2009 at 9:04 PM

She must be a very frustrated old woman. I wonder what she really wants to do or say?!?

PaCadle on October 29, 2009 at 8:34 PM

Maybe she wants to get close to Madeline Albright or Janet Reno, in the red pickup truck?

OmahaConservative on October 29, 2009 at 9:04 PM

In the four years since the inspectors left, intelligence reports show that Saddam Hussein has worked to rebuild his chemical and biological weapons stock, his missile delivery capability, and his nuclear program. He has also given aid, comfort, and sanctuary to terrorists, including al Qaeda members. It is clear, however, that if left unchecked, Saddam Hussein will continue to increase his capacity to wage biological and chemical warfare, and will keep trying to develop nuclear weapons.”
– Sen. Hillary Clinton (D, NY), Oct 10, 2002
MB4 on October 29, 2009 at 5:27 PM

Great quote MB4. Where did you find it?

Basilsbest on October 29, 2009 at 9:56 PM

Maybe she wants to get close to Madeline Albright or Janet Reno, in the red pickup truck?

OmahaConservative on October 29, 2009 at 9:04 PM

OmahaConservative: Funny you mention that,I swear,HilRod
is morphing into Madeline Albright,ahem,
hehe!:)

canopfor on October 29, 2009 at 9:59 PM

Well…Hillary and competent professional go together like…

Diarrhea and sleeping pills: you’re gonna wake up to an unpleasant reality.

Sorry, couldn’t resist.

mad scientist on October 29, 2009 at 10:14 PM

Just gotta love that “smart diplomacy”. To bad it’s being run by idiots.

GarandFan on October 29, 2009 at 10:43 PM

“I spent my entire eight years in the Senate opposing him,” she said to a burst of applause from the audience of several hundred students.

Liar.

They must really be totally devoid of ideas or anything else. Still the Bush-bashing campaign mode.

ddrintn on October 29, 2009 at 10:59 PM

I completely disagree. She was terrific. She talked straight.

AnninCA on October 30, 2009 at 12:24 AM

I completely disagree. She was terrific. She talked straight.

AnninCA on October 30, 2009 at 12:24 AM

So what you’re saying is that you don’t know what a diplomat is.

Jim Treacher on October 30, 2009 at 1:59 AM

…and her husband spent eight years doing nothing to protect us from the likes of UBL or any other terrorists….glad she is able shed that guilt. What an administration of morons!!!!!! God protect us…

PhreeMan on October 29, 2009 at 7:20 PM

Her husband actually spent time getting the PC version of Islam implanted in our public schools.

Connie on October 30, 2009 at 2:17 AM

I’m a conservative. The only people to vote for McCain are the neo-liberals.

The Dean on October 29, 2009 at 5:36 PM

Which is interesting because, as a conservative, I thought my vote for McCain was in strict effort to keep Obama away from the White House. At least, as a conservative, I have on my conscience that my vote did the only thing mathematically consistent in said effort. Your vote, however, helped guarantee the vastly larger anti conservative win. Nice job…and thanks.

anuts on October 30, 2009 at 4:41 AM

If Clinton wearing something on her head is looking offensive or weak, there’s a simple solution,male Secretary of States.
The Islamic world as a whole doesn’t do business with women anyhow.

Jeff from WI on October 30, 2009 at 5:50 AM

“Does either of the above instances represent how a competent, professional diplomat would behave?”

Would a competent, professional diplomat use the word “gettable”?

loudmouth883 on October 30, 2009 at 6:38 AM

God protect us…

PhreeMan on October 29, 2009 at 7:20 PM

Why should God protect us? We haven’t done a damned thing to protect ourselves from this pack of fascist leftists and idiot idealogues but we want God to save us from our miserable choices. I believe that God is waiting for some sign from us that we are humbled and contrite and willing to do battle for righteousness in His name. AP is excluded from this of course.

SKYFOX on October 30, 2009 at 9:39 AM

Hillary really needs to speak to her hubby about how the Pakistanis funded Gulbudden Hekmatyar, since he was a Talibani leader and known terrorist organizer funded by the ISI. And about what her hubby didn’t do to stem the tide of radical Islam. Of course that would have to go to Bush 41, Reagan, Carter, Ford and Nixon as the ISI has been funding Hekmatyar for quite some time, now, at least since Zia.

ajacksonian on October 30, 2009 at 12:37 PM

you’ve got the wrong link to the story it’s:

http://www.theonion.com/content/video/u_s_condemned_for_pre_emptive_use

mathewsjw on October 30, 2009 at 3:01 PM

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