Thursday, December 27, 2007
The assassination is no less a tragedy for its lack of surprise. If and until the Pakistani administration credibly arrives at some resolution of culpability and proper justice for this act, it must remain suspect, and U.S. policy must hold it to account for this behavior. In this regard, it was disconcerting to hear President Bush mention "extreme elements" in his terse statement this morning. Do we know something already or are we building a cover for Musharraf? Is this a way to apply pressure and provide support to Musharraf to act against the extremists? Or, are we shamelessly and cynically applying another fig leaf to replace the one that blew off with this murder? I'd honestly guess at this point that if there was not severe pressure prior to this, there is now. "Allies" are friends, but not necessarily friendly--nor do they have to be in order to accomplish a level of common cause.