Few issues have been more contentious between the United States and Pakistan than the later’s negotiation of the Swat Valley peace deal with assorted Taliban-styled factions, which US envoy Richard Holbrooke has repeatedly expressed “concern” over. The Obama Administration has taken the rhetoric to a new level however.
Today, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton lashed out at Pakistan for making the peace deal, saying it amounted to an abdication to the “loosely-confederated group of terrorists and others who are seeking the overthrow of the Pakistani state.” Secretary Clinton added that the situation “poses a mortal threat to the security of our country and the world.”
Yet despite predictions of doom, a spokesman for the Tehreek-e Nifaz-e Shariat-e Muhammadi (TNSM), the principle militant faction involved in the Swat Valley deal, insists that his group his no ambitions to establish a parallel state, but rather wants the ideology of Pakistan to be implemented “in letter and spirit.”
In response to America’s repeated “concerns” over the peace deal, Prime Minister Yousef Raza Gilani insisted earlier in this week that it was an internal matter and that “there was no alternative under the circumstances.”