Monday, March 26, 2012

Panetta Wanted Parallel Intelligence Body in Pakistan to rival ISI

WASHINGTON - Former CIA head and current US Defence Secretary, Leon Panetta, had wanted to establish a parallel spy body inside Pakistan hidden from ISI, a noted Pakistani author said, adding the idea was approved by the Obama Administration.

In his latest book “Pakistan on the Brink: The Future of America, Pakistan and Afghanistan”, Ahmed Rashid said such a recommendation by Panetta, who then headed the CIA, was given some time after September 2009.

The book, published by Viking, hit the stands Sunday. “Starting in September 2009, over several weeks, Obama conducted a long assessment of his options. The military wanted Obama to consider only three: dispatching 10,000 trainers, sending 40,000 troops, or sending 8,000 troops,” Rashid wrote.

He said that there was little discussion of Afghanistan’s strategic political issues, such as its growing political and ethnic divisions, its economy, relations with Karzai, or the readiness of the Taliban for talks.

However, Pakistan occupied a lot of discussion but yielded few political answers, Rashid wrote. Read More