Freshman Rep. Allen West has taken President Barack Obama to task for failing to gain the release of a Pakistani doctor who helped the CIA find terrorist leader Osama bin Laden.
A Pakistani court last week convicted Dr. Shakil Afridi of conspiring against the state and threw him in prison for 33 years, despite a demand from the United States to free him.
The White House let Afridi “hang out to dry” by not removing him and his family from Pakistan to guarantee their safety, West told Greta Van Susteren of Fox News Tuesday, Politico
reports. He said the doctor and his family are probably in great danger of physical harm and that the Obama administration should continue its quest for his release.
“It kind of shows the amateur nature of this administration and President Obama in talking too much about this operation and enabling the Pakistanis to listen carefully to some of the words and verbiage he was using, and they were able to back trace it and put the pieces together on their side,” West said.
Afridi was in charge of a vaccination program for the CIA in Pakistan. The program helped in discovering bin Laden’s home in Abbottabad, the city where U.S. Special Forces killed the al Qaeda kingpin last May.
West said the conviction of Afridi shows Pakistan’s government is “aligning” with the terrorist group and isn’t a true ally of the United States.
This also points to Obama’s failure on foreign policy, West said. “I cannot understand why anyone says that this is a very successful president when it comes to foreign policy. I don’t know if it’s naiveté or just amateur hour in the White House, but these have serious national security ramifications.”
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