Matthews, Landay & Clemons: Discussing Pakistan’s Challenge to American Strategy


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I chatted with Chris Matthews of MSNBC and Jonathan Landay of McClatchy News on Hardball the other night. I thought it was a terrific discussion — and was pleased to hear Landay outline the reality that Pakistan and the U.S. are simply not operating in the same strategic grooves when it comes to dealing with the Taliban and Afghanistan.
— Steve Clemons


6 comments on “Matthews, Landay & Clemons: Discussing Pakistan’s Challenge to American Strategy

  1. Kathleen says:

    Great discussion. What a power pack. Landay, Matthews and Clemons.
    Steve “we are in a quagmire” “America is more impotent”
    Landay “what is the political reconciliation in Afghanistan”
    Matthews “we have no plan”
    When will Pakistan, India and Israel sign the Non proliferation treaty?
    Come on Clemons you are making the MSNBC rounds push them on the I/P issue. Some of us have been pushing Chris Matthews for years. The only person to really touch this issue on MSNBC was Dylan Ratigan awhile back with Glenn Greenwald. Bet Ratigan took a beating.
    Ratigan and Greenwald went further than anyone ever has in the MSM


  2. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Considering that the ISI was involved in financing the crimes committed on 9/11, (General Mahmud Ahmed is KNOWN to have sent money to Atta. Yet Ahmed was never indicted or pursued. Whats up with that?) the idea that Pakistan was ever an “ally” in the epic con-job known as “The Global War On Terrorism” is utter and complete bullshit. Mushariff, and the ISI, may well have been an “ally” to something the PNAC and the criminals Bush and Cheney were up to, but it sure as hell had nothing to do with Al Qaeda, or bringing the 9/11 criminals to justice.
    When one looks at the whole adventure, 9/11, Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, etc, it becomes painfully obvious that we have been a paying audience to a very expensive charade that is carefully orchestrated, and continuing to play out, as we speak.


  3. Don Bacon says:

    But Traub doesn’t mention the India strategic problem as Landay correctly did.
    Also Traub suggested that the U.S. wants stability in Pakistan:
    “But in Pakistan, as in Afghanistan, the time has come to lower expectations. The United States will have a significant presence in both countries, civilian as well as military, for a long time to come, and over the long run may help foster stability and decent governance in both places.”
    Maybe not. The CIA was involved in the growing unrest in Pakistan’s Balochistan, an ethnic area that extends into Iran, but the ISI broke that up. However unrest is still increasing so the CIA may be back.


  4. John Waring says:

    Here’s a good article by James Traub. The paper is mighty thin over that chasm separating the USA and Pakistan.


  5. John Waring says:

    We are not Muslims. We have no cultural legitimacy.
    Karzai is no partner. He has his skin to save, not ours.
    Pakistan is no partner. They want Afghanistan neutralized in case of a face off with India. How better to do that with the Taliban in charge.
    You can’t grow rice on rocks.
    Maybe we ought to stop trying.


  6. Don Bacon says:

    Jonathan Landay is exactly correct on Pakistan’s strategic objectives, regarding India, and Steve Clemons gets it too. This is the first time that I have heard anything sensible anywhere regarding the simple fact that Pakistan’s security goals don’t coincide with U.S. strategic objectives. Hooray!
    The Karzai government, which sprang from the Northern Alliance, an ally of India, with India influence in Afghanistan, is not a government that Pakistan wants to see on its western flank in the future, so Pakistan needs and supports the Taliban. There must be a political solution.
    But I don’t agree that the U.S. wants to stabilize Pakistan. War is the health of the U.S. state and instability anywhere is welcome to the Pentagon. I suspect that the U.S. wants to Balkanize Pakistan, by splitting off Balochistan with India’s help.
    As long as the War on Terror goes on then the military budget will be difficult or impossible to cut, because we must support the troops.


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