Pakistani Counterterrorism Cooperation Isn’t Free
The Wall Street Journal reports ahead of tomorrow’s U.S.-Pakistani foreign ministerial talks:
Pakistan sent a 56-page document to the U.S. ahead of strategic talks scheduled for Wednesday, seeking expanded military and economic aid in what some American officials believe is an implicit offer to crack down in return on the Afghan Taliban.
The previously undisclosed document includes requests ranging from U.S. help to alleviate Pakistan’s chronic water and power shortages to pleas for surveillance aircraft and support in developing the country’s civilian nuclear program.
As it happens, Richard Holbrooke, the administration’s special envoy for Afghanistan and Pakistan, signaled his support for such an aid package in December, so as to convince the Pakistanis that the U.S. desires more than just a transactional counterterrorism relationship with Pakistan.
The chief of staff of the Pakistani Army, Gen. Ashfaq Pervez Kayani, arrived in Washington already and I understand met with Defense Secretary Robert Gates yesterday.