If Tauscher Goes to State, How Long Before the Pakistanis Complain?
Al Kamen at The Washington Post reports that Rep. Ellen Tauscher (D-Calif.) is being considered for a top post at the State Department: undersecretary for arms control and nonproliferation. If Tauscher is tapped, the Pakistani government, which already doesn’t like Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, is probably about to like her even less. Last week, Tauscher and Rep. Jane Harman (D-Calif.) introduced a bill that would condition all U.S. aid to Pakistan on the United States having access to notorious nuclear proliferator and Pakistani national hero A.Q. Khan. From a statement Tauscher put out Thursday:
“A.Q. Khan is one of the most dangerous men in the world because he has done more to increase the threat of nuclear terror than anyone in history. Now that a Pakistani court has all but freed him from house arrest, it is just common sense that our government, as well as the Pakistani government, does everything in its power to fully assess the damage he has caused to the international arms control regime.”
If Tauscher indeed gets the non-proliferation job, it’ll be worth watching to see if she convinces the administration to keep those strings attached to the additional aid to Pakistan that it’s considering.