WASHINGTON - The Bush administration is willing to send a small number of U.S. combat troops to Pakistan to help fight the insurgency there if Pakistani authorities ask for such help, Defense Secretary Robert Gates said Thursday.deleted
"We remain ready, willing and able to assist the Pakistanis and to partner with them to provide additional training, to conduct joint operations, should they desire to do so, " Gates told a news conference.
Gates said the Pakistani government has not requested any additional assistance in the weeks since al-Qaida and affiliated extremists have intensified their fighting inside Pakistan. And he stressed that the United States would respect the Pakistanis' judgment on the utility of American military assistance
It is about time that the actual troop deployment took place in this rogue state that is an integral part of the Real "Axis of evil". We're far beyond the point where mouthing dhimmi platitudes about "willingness" to deploy suffice. Note the dhimmi caveat of a Pakistani request being a pre-requisite for action! Yeah, right - as if that will be forthcoming, ever. In fact, Musharraf recently issued an open warning (threat?) to the Yanks that they would regret the day they launched any military action in the "land of the pure". It is incomprehensible why the Yanks would still fall for the facade of "Stalwart ally in war on terror" despite all this. Is it a case of unnatural Christo-yoga ("head in the arse", to borrow a phrase) clouding their judgement and intellectual faculties?