And it turns out that I am, I would bet that operations in the ATO in the Northeast, East, and Southeast provinces are going to be regularly of the "cross-border" variety very soon.
ISLAMABAD, Pakistan - Taliban-style militants battling government forces in northwest Pakistan said Sunday they wanted dialogue with the winners of parliamentary elections and urged the new leadership to abandon President Pervez Musharraf's war on terror.
My view is that we should have been conducting a large scale airborne operation, followed by some selective carpet bombing on or around October 1, 2001 in the Tribal areas, because I would have counted on something like this happening.
Maulvi Umar, spokesman for the Islamic militant Tehrik-e-Taliban, said his group welcomed the victory of anti-Musharraf parties and was anxious to talk with them about ways to bring peace to northwestern tribal areas, where U.S. officials believe Osama Bin Laden himself may be hiding.
However, U.S. officials fear a dialogue-based strategy may end up giving al-Qaida and other hardline Islamists a sanctuary in Pakistan. American officials believe a 10-month cease-fire in mountainous North Wazirastan, which collapsed last year, enabled al-Qaida and Afghan Taliban fighters to regroup after being driven by U.S.-led forces from Afghanistan.
The possible loss of Pakistan to negotiations with the Jihadis is bad. At least we had some cooperation by the Musharraf government out in the tribal areas, but the Pakistani military is not very effective and in some cases, as observed by our soldiers who are at firebases close to the border, indifferent to the Taliban and their use of the area as a sanctuary to attack us from, or in some cases, in league with them.
But that stands to reason....
A survey released by the U.S.-funded International Republican Institute in early February found that three-quarters of the 3,845 Pakistanis polled considered Islamic extremism a serious problem. But only 9 percent believed the country should cooperate with the United States in the war against terror.
So, they hate the fact that the Taliban exist, but won't lift a finger to help the people that are killing them. Maybe we can get a conference with them and the leaders of the Awakening. Maybe they can bring some photos of what al-Qaida do when you don't cooperate.
My battle plan would be to inform the new Pakistani government that we plan to continue our fight against the terrorists and then surround the area, bomb their sanctuaries to sea level, and ambush them on the rat-lines leading out of there.
Some won't agree, but if al-Qaida invade Hell, I will fight them there too...