A number of Senators are calling on Congress to immediately suspend billions of dollars in annual foreign aid to Pakistan following yesterday’s killing of Osama bin Laden in the city of Abbottabad. Officials say the killing raises questions about Pakistan’s reliability as a US ally.
Though US officials have long insisted bin Laden was probably in Pakistan, the belief was that he was in a remote tribal area that the Zardari government maintains minimal control. The revelation that he was in Abbottabad, an affluent town not far from the capital city, has raised questions about why the Pakistani government didn’t know where he was.
“It is hard to imagine the police or the military had no knowledge,” insisted Sen. Carl Levin (D – MI), while other officials said it was virtually certain that the Pakistani government was supporting bin Laden ahead of his death.
During his speech announcing bin Laden’s death, President Obama praised the Pakistani government in general and Zardari in particular for their cooperation in the killing. It seems, however, that the public line differs greatly from the private line.