Posted on: 12:37 PM IST Sep 11, 2008
New York: US President George Bush has secretly given a go ahead to American special forces to carry out ground attacks inside Pakistan without the prior approval of the country's government.
The classified orders signal a watershed for the Bush administration after nearly seven years of trying to work with Pakistan to combat the Taliban and al Qaeda elements, New York Times reported quoting senior American officials.
"The situation in the tribal areas is not tolerable," a senior official told the paper. "We have to be more assertive. Orders have been issued."
The new orders, the paper said, reflect concern about safe havens for al-Qaeda and the Taliban inside Pakistan, as well as an American view that Pakistan lacks the will and ability to combat militants.
They also illustrate lingering distrust of the Pakistani military and intelligence agencies and a belief that some American operations had been compromised once Pakistanis were advised of the details, the official said.
American officials were quoting as saying that they will notify Pakistan when they conduct limited ground attacks like the Special Operations raid last Wednesday in a Pakistani village near the Afghanistan border, but that they will not ask for its permission.
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