US Weighs Direct Pakistan Strikes

But unilateral action could heighten tension between countries
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Aug 23, 2008 1:21 PM CDT
Local residents and Pakistani security officials examine the site of suicide bombing in Charbagh, Pakistan, today.   (AP Photo/Sherin Zada)
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(Newser) – Frustrated with what some see as unproductive new leadership in Pakistan and fearing a strengthening al-Qaeda, Pentagon officials are considering a unilateral mission to root out militants hiding in the country, the Los Angeles Times reports. The CIA has backed such a move for months, but some officials remain concerned that a strike would shake Pakistan’s support for the US.

“We are truly conflicted,” said a US military official. While the desire to destroy al-Qaeda is strong, “do you do more long-term harm if you act very, very aggressively?” The US has proposed training Pakistani troops, but the country’s government has fought the idea amid lingering tensions. Pakistan says it is taking action against militants, but some US officials doubt it's fully able to do so.