James Forsyth

Petraeus: Next two weeks key to whether the Pakistani government survives

Petraeus: Next two weeks key to whether the Pakistani government survives
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If you want an idea of how worrying the situation in Pakistan is, read this story from James Rosen:

‘Gen. David Petraeus, commander of U.S. Central Command, has told U.S. officials the next two weeks are critical to determining whether the Pakistani government will survive, FOX News has learned.

"The Pakistanis have run out of excuses" and are "finally getting serious" about combating the threat from Taliban and Al Qaeda extremists operating out of Northwest Pakistan, the general added.

But Petraeus also said wearily that "we've heard it all before" from the Pakistanis and he is looking to see concrete action by the government to destroy the Taliban in the next two weeks before determining the United States' next course of action, which is presently set on propping up the Pakistani government and military with counterinsurgency training and foreign aid.

Petraeus made these assessment in talks with lawmakers and Obama administration officials this week, according to individuals familiar with the discussions.’ The number of attacks against non-combatants in Pakistan doubled last year and US officials say they don't know what the Pakistani Taliban's aim is. The only thing that offers some reassurance is that command and control of Pakistan’s nuclear weapons is split up to the extent that the capital falling wouldn’t necessarily mean that control over the nuclear weapon passes to the insurgents.

Hat Tip: Playbook

Written byJames Forsyth

James Forsyth is Political Editor of the Spectator. He is also a columnist in The Sun.

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