The Road from Washington to Karachi to Nuclear Anarchy

The journey to the martial law just imposed on Pakistan by its self-appointed president, the dictator Pervez Musharraf, began in Washington on September 11, 2001. On that day, it so happened, Pakistan’s intelligence chief, Lt. General Mahmood Ahmed, was in town. He was summoned forthwith to meet with Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage, who gave him perhaps the earliest preview of the global Bush doctrine then in its formative stages, telling him, "You are either one hundred percent with us or one hundred percent against us." The next day, the administration, dictating to the dictator, presented seven demands that a Pakistan that wished to be "with us" must meet. These concentrated on gaining its cooperation in assailing Afghanistan’s Taliban regime, which had long been nurtured by the Pakistani intelligence services in Afghanistan and had, of course, harbored Osama Bin Laden and his al-Qaeda training camps. Conspicuously missing was any […]

Neoconservative stalwart Bill Kristol recently suggested in the Weekly Standard that, in response to “Iranian aggression,” the United States should seriously consider “a military strike against Iranian nuclear facilities.”[i] As Kristol certainly knows, the shoe is on the other foot. The Iranian government has been proposing negotiations for years. We now know, and he undoubtedly knows, that in 2003 the Khatami government, the moderate government, but with the approval of the hard-line clerical rulers, offered to negotiate all outstanding issues with the United States. That included nuclear issues. It also included a two-state settlement for the Israel-Palestine problem, which, as I mentioned, Iran officially supports. The Bush administration didn’t reject the negotiation offer. It didn’t even reply to it. Its response was to censure the Swiss diplomat who brought the offer.[ii] It’s the United States that’s refusing negotiations. The big hoopla that Iran is now willing to negotiate seriously because […]