Former presidential adviser Karl Rove says although Pakistan is a valuable ally it has to be held accountable for people in the country who possibly supported Osama bin Laden and are protecting other terror elements.
Rove also told Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly on Monday that he was “taken aback” by public comments from Pakistan’s ambassador to the United States, Husain Haqqani , that the United States should not pressure his country for more information.
“This is an important country in an important region and we can’t simply say we are so disappointed in [Pakistan] and we are walking away,” Rove said. “On the other hand, we can’t let these things go without any response. For example, the Pakistanis say they are going to conduct an investigation of how Osama bin Laden was able to establish a sanctuary a mile or two away from their equivalent of West Point in a prosperous suburb . . . of their capital.
“And we ought to press them on this investigation . . . to make sure that we know what’s going on and we know what kind of information is being developed,” Rove continued. “I was taken aback by the Pakistani ambassador to the United States comments basically warning us not to pressure him. He said: ‘You look, you’ve got what you . . . in essence deserved after giving us a lot of — giving a lot of money, so you’ve got exactly what you deserved basically saying don’t pressure us.
“Well, that — that’s not his business to tell us that. If he wants to pass that comment on, do it privately to the Secretary of State but don’t be broadcasting it on the media like that,” he added. “And we ought to privately call him in and say — call him and then say, if you ever want your phone calls returned, don’t be saying things like that again.”
Rove said the United States should continue to provide the $3 billion in aid it gives Pakistan a year because it has been an important ally in the war on terror, but it has to be conditional.
“We could say: ‘Oh yes, you get $3 billion, but we’re going to tie some strings . . . that some of that money doesn’t get spent the way they want to get spent,” Rove said. “This requires patient diplomacy — and the United States government has a lot at stake in the outcome of this.”
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