No Bin Laden information in years, says Gates
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The US has had no reliable information on the whereabouts of al-Qaeda leader Osama Bin Laden in years, US Defense Secretary Robert Gates has admitted.
No kidding...hmmmmm...again I ask, why are we in Afghanistan?
Mr Gates' comments came after US President Barack Obama announced a decision this week to send 30,000 more US troops to Afghanistan.
He recalled that the US was fighting there in response to the 9/11 attacks against America by al-Qaeda, and had made the decision to invade "only after the Taliban refused to turn over Osama Bin Laden".
Mr Obama said al-Qaeda leaders had escaped into Pakistan in 2001 and 2002 and had been able to "retain their safe-havens along the border".
A recent US Senate report prepared by the Foreign Relations Committee Democratic staff concluded that Bin Laden had been "within our grasp" in Afghanistan in late 2001.
But it said that at the time, calls for US reinforcements had been rejected, allowing the al-Qaeda leader to "walk unmolested" into Pakistan's unregulated tribal areas.
Last week, UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown called on Pakistan to do more to find Mr Bin Laden.
"We've got to ask ourselves why, eight years after September the 11th, nobody has been able to spot or detain or get close to Osama bin Laden, nobody's been able to get close to [Ayman al-] Zawahiri, the number two in al-Qaeda," he said.
Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani responded by saying he did not think Bin Laden was in Pakistan, and that his country had yet to be given any "credible or actionable information" by the US on Bin Laden.
I'm told that we are still there to help establish a peaceful, honest central government, build infrastructure, educate and train the Afghan people so they can live safe and prosperous in the future... Isn't that the American dream?
On a different note:
Let me think...China and Pakistan are allies...
We have lost a lot of American soldiers and others as well...
China is preparing to reap many natural resources from Afghanistan...near the border of Pakistan.
The border between Afghanistan and Pakistan remains one of the most violent areas.
We believe Taliban, al-Qaeda, (bad guys in general) are travelling back and forth between the two countries which makes it difficult to catch them.
China has NO soldiers in the area.
So I ask, Why doesn't China take an active diplomatic role and insist that Pakistan REALLY cooperate in stopping the "bad guys?"
The answer I received was disturbing... "Because China doesn't believe in meddling in other countries internal affairs."
American Deaths in and around Afghanistan
Germany (from wounds in theatre) 12
USA (from wounds in theatre) 17