Nur al-Cubicle

A blog on the current crises in the Middle East and news accounts unpublished by the US press. Daily timeline of events in Iraq as collected from stories and dispatches in the French and Italian media: Le Monde (Paris), Il Corriere della Sera (Milan), La Repubblica (Rome), L'Orient-Le Jour (Beirut) and occasionally from El Mundo (Madrid).

Friday, September 22, 2006

Bush to send expeditionary force into Pakistan

Update: Maybe Bush's chat with Musharef is about something else entirely. The French newspaper L'Est Republicain reports that Osama bin Laden died of typhoid a month ago. A Saudi intelligence source is said to have informed a French counterpart.

Oh this can't be good.

Le Monde's Islamabad Correspondent, Fran├žoise Chipaux, reports that Bush has vowed to send US troops into Pakistan to hunt down bin Laden. [Big assumption that he's even there]. Pakistan Foreign Ministry spokesman Tasnim Aslam has come out and declared that the Pakistani government will not permit the deployment. Pakistan had sent 80,000 troops into Waziristan, but lost 600 men in fruitless combat with the locals. It recently threw in the towel and signed an agreement with local leaders. Bush doesn't have enough troops to do much in a rugged, hostile place like Waziristan. 80,000 Pakistanis troops weren't enough.

But the madrassas are not shut down (how could they be?). Hardline Muslims are a very potent force there and they have just won a big victory in forcing the government to implement an even harsher divorce law. Musharef is on the defensive, with a pressures from militants and discontent in the army. Musharef can't go to war against Pakistan.

Apparently Musharef met with Bush yesterday. I don't know what Bush has threatened, but he's low on manpower.

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