An article that will help you feel a bit better about the Pakistan situation

I’m not sure how much of this story is spin, or not spin, but a recent article about Pakistani troops holding the line along the Pakistani/Afghan border sure helped make me a bit less critical of Pakistan’s efforts against terrorism. (Story here.)

The story discussed the brutal conditions the troops face, which by the way are the same conditions our own troops face, and reminded me of the fact that Pakistan has lost more than 3,000 soldiers in their fight against al-Qaida, which is a considerable number by today’s standards.

It also featured some great quotes from a few Pakistani soldiers.

One of them, who was clean-shaven, said this of al-Qaida:  “They are the enemy. They are not working for Pakistan. They are telling us that we have to do everything their way.”

Speaking for myself, it was nice to hear such moderate comments, and to be reminded that al-Qaida supporters are still in the minority, even in Pakistan.

But, we can’t dispute the fact that Pakistani intelligence likely knew where bin Laden stayed, nor any of the other factors — like, the fact their intelligence services often work against the Afghan government — which have caused the Obama administration (and the Bush administration before him) to be concerned about the effort (and intentions) of the Pakistani government.

Still though, if you get a minute, read the article. It will help provide some balance to the typical news hysteria you’re probably watching 24/7 on cable TV.

Stan R. Mitchell

Oak Ridge, Tenn.

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