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US forced to leave Pakistan base as relations reach new low after NATO attack December 5, 2011


December 5, 2011

by legitgov

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US forced to leave Pakistan base as relations reach new low after NATO attack that killed 24 04 Dec 2011 US military personnel have begun leaving Shamsi air base in Pakistan, after a NATO attack that killed 24 Pakistani soldiers near the Afghan border plunged U.S.-Pakistani relations to an all time low. More than 70 US marines and CIA operatives are set to leave the base today. An official told NBC: ‘Two U.S. cargo planes reached Shamsi Airport and the loading of the equipment and other cargo items has also started.’

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Americans not immune if they act against U.S: CIA December 2, 2011


December 2, 2011

by legitgov

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Americans not immune if they act against U.S: CIA 01 Dec 2011 American citizens are not immune from being treated like an enemy if they take up arms against the United States, the CIA general counsel said on Thursday. CIA General Counsel Stephen Preston was responding to a question at an American Bar Association national security conference about the killing of Americans overseas without presenting evidence of wrongdoing. A CIA drone strike killed Anwar al-Awlaki, an American-born cleric linked to Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, earlier this year.

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Obama lawyers: Citizens targeted if at war with US


December 2, 2011

by legitgov

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Obama lawyers: Citizens targeted if at war with US 01 Nov 2011 U.S. citizens are legitimate military targets when they take up arms with ‘al-Qaida,’ top national security lawyers in the Obama regime said Thursday. The lawyers were asked at a national security conference about the CIA killing of Anwar al-Awlaki, a U.S. citizen and [alleged] leading al-Qaida figure. He died in a Sept. 30 U.S. drone strike in the mountains of Yemen. The government lawyers, CIA counsel Stephen Preston and Pentagon counsel Jeh Johnson, said U.S. citizens do not have immunity when they are at war with the United States.

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US and Pakistan: deadliest of friends | Editorial November 28, 2011

How bad can a relationship between two military allies get? If this year’s tally of incidents is anything to go by, Pakistan‘s rage against the American military machine can get a lot worse. First came the affair over Raymond Davis, the CIA agent who shot dead two men who had pulled up in front of his car at a traffic light in Lahore. Then came the US raid that killed Osama bin Laden in the Pakistani garrison town of Abbottabad. And now this.

An Afghan special forces operation, backed up by Nato troops, allegedly came under fire from across the border. Afghan troops, another report goes, called in Nato airstrikes, and two Pakistani military posts were hit, killing 24 soldiers. The reaction in Pakistan ranged yesterday from cold fury (it is just not believed in Pakistani military circles that Nato was unaware of the co-ordinates of the two military posts in the village of Salala) to hot conspiracy: America was the “big evil”. The politician Imran Khan told thousands of supporters on Saturday that it was time to end the alliance with the US. It would be folly to dismiss this as mere populism. After a year like this, the Pakistani military will have to cope with rising levels of pressure from within its own ranks to end co-operation with the US.

The Afghan element to this tale of friendly fire is also troubling. If, as US forces start to draw down, Afghan troops take the lead in highly sensitive areas like these, where the exact line of the border is unclear, then this weekend’s woeful events may not be the last. As it is, it would not take much for Pakistani and Afghan troops to open fire on each other. On the Afghan side of the border in Kunar province, there was little doubt that the US military had done the right thing. They were congratulated for hitting the right target. On Saturday the Afghan president, Hamid Karzai, approved a second list of areas where Afghan forces will start taking the lead from Nato troops. As it is, the US is reluctant to give the Afghans fast jets or heavy artillery for fear of what they would do.

The short-term response is not as troubling as the long-term implications. Pakistan closed two border crossings and gave the US 15 days to quit Shamsi airbase in Baluchistan, from which it flew drones targeting militants in the tribal areas. The closures will make Barack Obama more dependent on Vladimir Putin’s goodwill, and the northern supply route through which 60% of troops and military cargo to Afghanistan now travel. But, of itself, the closures will be a temporary problem. Of greater significance is the erosion of Pakistani public support for the US fight against the Taliban. It would not be the first strategic mistake the US had made in this war, but it could yet prove the costliest.

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Iran ‘arrests 12 CIA agents’ November 25, 2011

Iran has arrested 12 people it claims were working undercover for the CIA inside the Islamic republic, further raising tensions in its already strained relationship with the US.

On Wednesday, the Irna state news agency quoted a senior Iranian official as saying that the spies it claimed to have arrested had been gathering intelligence from Iran’s security and military units as well as its highly sensitive nuclear programme.

“The main mission of this act of espionage was related to Iran’s progress in the fields of nuclear technology and also military and security activities,” said Parviz Sorouri, a member of the parliamentary committee on national security and foreign policy, in quotes carried by Irna.

Sorouri told the agency that the network had been uncovered by an operation involving the Iranian ministry of intelligence. “The US and Zionist regime’s espionage apparatuses were trying to damage Iran both from inside and outside with a heavy blow, using regional intelligence services,” he said. “Fortunately, with swift reaction by the Iranian intelligence department, the actions failed to bear fruit.”

Sorouri’s comments follow reports on Monday that Iran and the Lebanese Shia militia, Hezbollah had identified alleged CIA informants.

The leader of Hezbollah, Hassan Nasrallah, said in June that his group had uncovered at least two CIA informants within its ranks but his claims were met with scepticism at the time. But former US officials told Reuters this week that those arrested were indeed working for the CIA. The officials claimed the agents were “believed to be local recruits” working for the CIA rather than US citizens.

Iran did not specify the nationality of the individuals it has arrested and the CIA has declined to comment on the recent reports, saying “it does not, as a rule discuss allegations of operational activities”.

In October, tensions between Tehran and Washington escalated after US authorities said military factions inside the regime have conspired to kill the Saudi ambassador to Washington. Iran denied the allegations and one Iranian diplomat told the Guardian that the US had resorted to a so-called “entrapment technique” in order to smear Tehran in the eyes of the international community. US allegations were met with widespread scepticism because of the sloppy nature of the alleged assassination plot and the limited evidence provided by the US.

In a tit for tat reaction in November, Iranian officials accused the US of committing acts of terrorism in the Islamic republic. Iran said at the time that it had evidence showing the US had been behind “terror” operations in Iran, including the assassination of its nuclear scientists.

“We have 100 unbeatable documents on the US role in directing terror and terrorists in Iran and the region,” the supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei claimed. “By releasing these documents, we will dishonour the US and those who claim to be the advocates of human rights and campaign against terrorism among the world public opinion.” Iran claimed it had sent the documents to the UN but has so far not provided them to the media.

In recent years, Iran’s nuclear programme has experienced a series of dramatic setbacks after the assassinations of its scientists and the Stuxnet computer worm, which was designed to sabotage its atomic facilities and halt its uranium-enrichment programme. This month, an explosion at a military base near Tehran killed the architect of Iran’s missile programme. Iran has pointed the finger at the US and Israel for what has been widely seen as a covert war against the country’s nuclear programme and military capabilities.

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