Jumat, 13 April 2012

Pakistan calls for an end of drone wars in country and US interventionism. US and France discuss further sanctions before Iran and 5 + 1 talks start.


Pakistan Calls for End to US Interventionism

Drone strikes, troop incursions, and supply routes for NATO, among other things, must stop

by John Glaser, April 12, 2012
The Guidelines for Revised Terms of Engagement with USA/NATO/ISAF states that the “U.S. footprint in Pakistan must be reviewed,” and demanded “an immediate cessation of drone attacks inside the territorial borders of Pakistan,” an immediate stop to all military incursions into Pakistani territory for any reason, and a prohibition on using Pakistani territory or airspace to supply NATO troops in Afghanistan.
Pakistan has been saying as much for months, especially after U.S. warplanes killed 24 Pakistani soldiers at an outpost in the Mohmand Agency last November. Supply routes to NATO troops in Afghanistan have been closed to the U.S. since then and, even though the Obama administration restarted the drone program in January, Islamabad has consistently condemned them as “unlawful.”
The decade-long war in Afghanistan has terribly destabilized Pakistan and the Obama administration’s drone program – the institutionalization of extra-judicial execution and mass murder of innocent men, women, and children – has caused immense suffering and resentment. The parliament’s declaration is therefore unsurprising.
The statement comes as Washington struggles desperately to negotiate an end to the useless war in Afghanistan. But Pakistan’s interests in Afghanistan have run counter to Washington’s since the beginning of the war. With the inevitable U.S. defeat and the impending withdrawal of combat troops in 2014, Pakistan can be expected to support Taliban sway in Afghanistan to counter the influence of its archenemy, India.
Pakistan’s new stay-out-of-our-affairs declaration is frankly a long time coming. And the political entanglements of the region are an indication of how remote Afghanistan and Pakistan are to U.S. interests and what a massive waste the last decade of murderous and misguided engagement in the area has been.


Obama Threatens More Iran Sanctions

White House Says France Agrees With Call for More Sanctions

by Jason Ditz, April 12, 2012
With the P5+1 talks set to begin this weekend, the Obama Administration is already looking to their inevitable failure, and threatening more sanctions against Iran as soon as the talks end. White House officials confirmed that Obama and French President Nicolas Sarkozy discussed new sanctions in their conversation today.
The comments are the latest in a series of mostly negative signals from the US about the Istanbul talks, and the only indication that the talks are anything but an excuse for more sanctions is oneunconfirmed report that Obama sent a secret message to Iran by way of Turkeyhinting at an openness to “compromise” and allow Iran to retain some portions of its civilian nuclear program.
Even if true, the latest reports do not look promising, with new reports today that the US and Israel have negotiated an“understanding” that demanding Iran close the Fordow facility in Qom is a red line issue.
The underground Fordow is probably the least convenient facility for Israel to attack, and its closure has been repeatedly demanded by the West. Iran has noted that the only reason it built Fordow in such a position is because Israel is constantly threatening to attack.

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