Abbottabad raid collaborator: Dr Afridi singled out for top US civilian award

Published: February 15, 2012

The bill submitted by Congressman Dana Rohrabacher on Friday, called for Dr Afridi to be given the highest civilian award in helping US get Osama bin Laden. PHOTO: AFP

WASHINGTON: US Congressman Dana Rohrabacher has announced that he will introduce legislation in the Congress this week seeking Congressional Gold Medal for Dr Shakil Afridi, the doctor who aided the CIA in locating al Qaeda kingpin Osama bin Laden was in his compound in Abbottabad.

In a statement from his Washington DC office, Congressman Rohrabacher, Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigation, said, “Dr Afridi’s acts to help the United States were extremely valiant and daring. All Americans owe him our most sincere gratitude for helping to execute the terrorist who murdered thousands of innocent Americans. Awarding Dr Afridi a Congressional Gold Medal is a great honour befitting a hero who took such great risks to help the United States achieve a major victory.”

Earlier this month, the US Congressman had introduced legislation in the US House of Representatives to give Dr Afridi US citizenship. Representative Rohrabacher also chaired the Congressional hearing on Balochistan last week that has been widely criticised in Pakistan.

The press release issued by Representative Rohrabacher’s office also said, “Since the May, 2011 raid in Abbottabad, Dr Afridi has been arrested and held by the same Pakistani government that gave refuge to Bin Laden. Islamabad now threatens to try Dr Afridi for treason for helping the United States. Pakistan’s inquiry commission on the Abbottabad operation has called him a ‘national criminal,’ punishable by death. Dr Afridi continues to sacrifice for the United States and awarding him the Congressional Gold Medal is a fitting way to recognize his ongoing bravery.”

Published in The Express Tribune, February 15th, 2012.

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Reader Comments (61)

  • Imran Mohammad
    Feb 14, 2012 - 9:56PM

    This congressman seems to be obsessed. Next he is going to demand an Afridi monument next to Washington monument or his head sculpted on Mount Rushmore.

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  • Mohammad Ali Siddiqui
    Feb 14, 2012 - 10:14PM

    US won’t be able to get Dr. Shakeel Afridi from Pakistan.

    If we can give Shakeel Afridi to US, it means we can give any thing of Pakistan to US.

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  • T
    Feb 14, 2012 - 10:14PM

    Just want Mr. Rohrbacher to answer this simples question: Would the same treatment be meted out to the American who helps an Iraqi kill George W. Bush? I believe not…….

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  • corrupted_leaders...
    Feb 14, 2012 - 10:31PM

    treason comes to mind , no a medal…

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  • Mehreen
    Feb 14, 2012 - 10:53PM

    We’ll make a mausoleum for him (as ibrut for future traitors)

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  • mohammad ayub
    Feb 14, 2012 - 11:02PM

    we are thinking about our generation to come. what is going to happen to us next.And who we blame, ourselves or our friends. we dont know even who is a friend and who is the enemy. May God help us.Recommend

  • Feb 14, 2012 - 11:17PM

    i doubt if he is working for some strong lobby or he is being paid to make such statements

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  • Steven
    Feb 14, 2012 - 11:23PM

    We know what type of medal the US gave to the soldier who gave out information to Wikileaks. Maybe they should make him a hero too? When will the US understand that tey need to work together with Pakistan and not reward a foreign citizen who was spying for a foreign agency and then helping a foreign government conduct an act which compromised sovereignty. We all agree that OBL is a criminal who got what he deserved but the principle of honouring a person who betrays his own country is not good.Will the US be happy if the Russians honour someone who helps them conduct an act on its soil without telling US authorities?

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  • Feb 14, 2012 - 11:40PM

    And the next thing this Congressmen will ask “US highest Civilian award should be given to NATO heads for ensuring peace around the world” ::

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  • Shery baloch
    Feb 14, 2012 - 11:56PM

    He has life threats because he is going through a case filed against him by the Government of Pakistan ?????? Its weared …

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  • Hamza
    Feb 15, 2012 - 12:46AM

    We should award him the highest civilian medal too. Thank you Dr Afridi in helping kill the biggest terrorist on earth, murderer of more than 35000 Pakistanis.

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  • Visibly Invisible
    Feb 15, 2012 - 12:47AM

    @Mohammad Ali Siddiqui:
    Siddiqui Sb. you seriously need to wake up and smell the roses, there are plenty around given its valentines day.

    Drone attacks are carried on based on information by Pakistani intelligence, we gave-up Dr. Aafia, Aimal Kansi what makes you think that Pakistani government will stop at Dr. Afridi?

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  • Arindom
    Feb 15, 2012 - 1:11AM

    to all the emotional responses above – please ask yourself one question – was OBL a Hero or a Criminal residing illegally in Pakistan?

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  • Concerned
    Feb 15, 2012 - 1:14AM

    @T:
    Your logic is quite absurd- Osama bin Laden was never a Pakistani head of state, and given his involvement in terrorism against the people of Pakistan, he shouldn’t be sympathized with.
    Nevertheless, the Americans are in an election year and they will make Pakistan a scapegoat. I’m sure that the truth behind this affair is neither what the Western, or Pakistani media report – both sides are publishing needless, inflammatory and deceitful propaganda at the moment for the sake of politics.

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  • Basit
    Feb 15, 2012 - 1:19AM

    Dr Afridi used a legitimate cause for an illegitimate reason and now has once again made polio vaccinations suspect as being CIa operations. A medal indeed!

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  • Lady gaga
    Feb 15, 2012 - 2:25AM

    Dr afridi is a hero, our politicians let the most wanted man on the planet live in our country while they denied it and lied about it to the rest of the world. However dr afridi done us a huge favour , something which our governement should have

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  • anis kazi
    Feb 15, 2012 - 3:23AM

    its was a fake hepatitis vaccine campaign, not a polio one.

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  • Shane Hashmi
    Feb 15, 2012 - 3:40AM

    To date we don’t have proof beyond reasonable doubt that it was in fact OBL who was killed on that day. Just as we don’t have proof BRD that OBL was responsible for 9/11. An increasing number of Americans have even started to believe that 9/11 was a hoax. truth911.org

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  • Ghulam Mustafa
    Feb 15, 2012 - 4:33AM

    There’s a lot more to it then what meets the eye. I don’t want to initiate another debate or a conspiracy theory but this is not just about Doctor Afridi, or about Balochistan this all smells of another great game in the international politics.

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  • Cautious
    Feb 15, 2012 - 4:34AM

    I don’t suppose Pakistani’s have ever paused and wondered why Dr Shakil Afridi is an admired man everywhere except Pakistan. Pretty clear sign that he did something the rest of the World thinks was right.

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  • A. Khan
    Feb 15, 2012 - 4:59AM

    @Mohammad Ali Siddiqui : We as a nation have already sold ourselves to the US, morally and physically. What more is there to give ?

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  • Tim Hover
    Feb 15, 2012 - 5:12AM

    OBL death is the biggest conpiracy of the century after 9/11

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  • Raj - USA
    Feb 15, 2012 - 5:51AM

    A day that should have been celebrated with fireworks and sweets has been wasted. Pakistan should have celebrated May 2 with fireworks, sweets and even a national holiday. Had it done so, everyone in Pakistan would be having a different logic to argue on the subsequent events. Pakistan would be walking with its heads up and world would have respected and honored Pakistan. Just think.

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  • Feb 15, 2012 - 5:57AM

    @Imran Mohammad:
    Hilarious, especially Rushmore reference.

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  • TIMOTHY FLEMING
    Feb 15, 2012 - 5:59AM

    If an award it to be given, then it has to be given to President Barack Obama who gave the order to terminate bin Ladin. Rohrabacher always has an agenda of his own and i’m sure it’s true here.

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  • Darren Burntstorm
    Feb 15, 2012 - 6:56AM

    Has any one even seen a picture or an image of Dr Shakeel or is he another character created to emphesise on the theory that OBL was killed in Abbottabad.

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  • Bilal
    Feb 15, 2012 - 7:17AM

    @T
    I think people are mixing up many things here, first of all, it is very good to hear that OBL was killed..
    the only issue Pakistani govt has, that it should be operation with the help of Pakistani forces,
    but anyway Dr.Afridi did a very good job and we are proud of him.

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  • Feb 15, 2012 - 8:23AM

    My main problem with Dr. Afridi is that he used a humanitarian campaign for this deed. Already we have a problem of people not willing to get vaccinated and spreading disease. Now people will be even more reluctant to be vaccinated. This betrayal of healthcare is what merits punishment

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  • Ashanti
    Feb 15, 2012 - 8:40AM

    @Visibly Invisible: Please don’t compare Dr.Afridi with Dr.Aafia. They come from opposite sides of the spectrum.

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  • AkhterIqbal
    Feb 15, 2012 - 9:12AM

    Give Shakeel and take Aafia. Deal!

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  • Tariq
    Feb 15, 2012 - 9:31AM

    Dana Rohrabarker should be given a gold medal by the countries whose bidding he is doing in Congress with such great enthusiasm.

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  • Rajendra Kalkhande
    Feb 15, 2012 - 9:45AM

    One man’s enemy can be other man’s friend. Trouble makers in Kashmir are freedom fighters for Pakistan, but terrorists for us. Same is the case of Dr Afridi. He is hero for Americans but traitor for Pakistan. Its all relative..

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  • A
    Feb 15, 2012 - 9:53AM

    why dont they offer him a job in CIA?

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  • Salman Sheikh
    Feb 15, 2012 - 10:11AM

    If US want to give an award they must give it to Pakistan Innocent Citizens whom lives are at risk in this So called War on Terror.

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  • vasan
    Feb 15, 2012 - 11:01AM

    Rajendra Kalkhande : How come all the trouble makers in the world are friends only to Pakistan and not to China, West, India and the rest. Does it give a clue as to who makes the troubles.

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  • Baqar
    Feb 15, 2012 - 11:54AM

    Shakil Afridi did what was right….why should we hide a saudi national accussed of terrorizing the whole world….and now bin laden chapter has been closed so we can breathe afresh that no new accusations will be coming our way

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  • Saif Khan
    Feb 15, 2012 - 12:02PM

    @Mohammad Ali Siddiqui: So who says that we are not giving anything to US. Read the history you will find many things and many people

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  • s shah
    Feb 15, 2012 - 12:37PM

    @ hamza. I agree with you. I do not think Dr. Afridi should be punished for helping track down a terrorist and a criminal, he should be given a medal for doing what the Pakistani army was unable/unwilling to do to protect Pakistan from terrorism. Although I do not agree in killing anyone including OBL without a trial.

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  • Salman
    Feb 15, 2012 - 1:02PM

    The Congressman should also announce an award for the CIA Chief under whose aegis Osama got military training and full-might US assistance. And also for the US President who caved in to the Iranians and supplied them truckloads of arms in return for hostages.

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  • khan
    Feb 15, 2012 - 1:18PM

    Proud of Dr. Afridi. Brave son of the soil!

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  • Feb 15, 2012 - 1:34PM

    What do you do with medals, just give his family hundred kilos of gold bars.

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  • Salman Sheikh
    Feb 15, 2012 - 1:56PM

    And to award themselves that No son or daughter of Congressmen is taking active part in battle field… REF: Fahrenheit 9/11

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  • Feb 15, 2012 - 1:59PM

    What I dont understand is how did he “betray” Pakistan!

    What he did was conduct a polio campaign, that is all. Do you think he knew that OBL was the actual target? No. No Intelligence agency will reveal such sensitive data to citizens of other Countries.

    Then what WAS his crime? His only crime was… well, nothing!

    He didn’t know OBL was the target, nor did he cheat anyone. He is just a scapegoat to hide Pakistan’s complicity in protecting OBL.

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  • Truth Teller
    Feb 15, 2012 - 2:16PM

    I think Dr. Afridi did a fantastic job of apprehending a terrorist. I salute him. Apprehending # 3 terrorist Khalid Mohammad, the master mind of 9/11 was good but getting # 1 terrorist was bad. This reflects the confused minds of Pakistanis. God help them in understanding the realities of the free & civilized world.

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  • Adeel759
    Feb 15, 2012 - 2:21PM

    I think, Congressman is absolutely right. Dr Afridi did not give away Pakistan’s Most Secret rather helped locate World’s Most Wanted.

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  • Waqt-ka-Taqaaza
    Feb 15, 2012 - 3:07PM

    @BruteForce:
    Of course Dr.Afridi betrayed Pakistan. It takes decades to nurture a strategic asset of the calibre of OBL and Dr.Afridi handed over this precious asset in the blink of an eye ! He should be tried under Article 6 !!

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  • Sadia
    Feb 15, 2012 - 3:38PM

    @T:
    hello? OBL was not the Pakistani president … please keep things in perspective.

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  • Salman Sheikh
    Feb 15, 2012 - 4:18PM

    @Truth Teller:
    Have you seen OBL in Pakistan.. are you the witness????

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  • Feb 15, 2012 - 4:23PM

    @Steven: I fail to understand why people of Pakistan are so upset and why are they calling Dr afridi a traitor. after all is it not that Pakistan was also hunting and searching for OBL to be handed over to USA? In fact People of Pakistan and the Government should appreciate his services for making their job easy and he has in fact helped the cause of the people. Is it not that scores of taliban terrorists have been captured by Pak army and handed over to USA for bounty money? Even Gen Musharraf in his book In line of Fire has accepted this fact. Then what is the problem???

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  • Feb 15, 2012 - 4:33PM

    @Waqt-ka-Taqaaza: Pakistan and its theories of strategic assets and strategic depths and hundred cuts to bleed are only adding to the miseries of awam of Pakistan.

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  • Truth Teller
    Feb 15, 2012 - 4:41PM

    Salman S, I do not roam around with terrorists besides I do not live in Pakistan. Have you seen OBL? Our so called premier intelligence agencies saw the photographs of OBL.

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  • Mufazzil
    Feb 15, 2012 - 5:14PM

    Dr. Shakeel Afridi would be released very soon and he would definitely get the gold medal in U.S. And people who think that he wouldn’t be released are day dreaming I would say, because Raymond Davis was spying on Pakistani Nuclear Assets, if he can be released then Dr. Shakeel Afridi hasn’t commited a bigger crime!

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  • Ali
    Feb 15, 2012 - 7:49PM

    The end result would have been the removal of OBL, had he informed Pakistan first but he knew that he would lose money in that case.

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  • nationalist baloch
    Feb 15, 2012 - 8:05PM

    … with friends like Rohrabacher … Afridi doessn’t need enemies …

    … maybe, Rohrabacher wants to build his future career on a ‘pseudo martyr’s grave’ …

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  • shazada zahid mahmoud malik loan
    Feb 15, 2012 - 9:21PM

    This is line with the Jewish Americans’ need to ensure no Muslim country has the nuclear deterence – except India and Israel so they can rule South and Central Asia – Mr Bascher is mistaken – may be Sadam should also have been awarded a gold medal for going to the gallows for the American Jewery and Israel – look at Gadaffis betrayal by the Israelis and the CIA.
    This is another propaganda coup for the Israelis/CIA. Is it? Bruce Riedel is an Israeli agent working for MOSSAD and not an American citizen. This is another and last concerted attack (and effort) by the Jewish Americans to highlight the dangers of Pakistani nukes. Well they can do whatever they like they are in safe hands – more so than the Israelis/American or Indian. You expect this from the Jewish Americans given that their original objectives for invading Afghanistan have been defeated and Iraq was a victim of Sadam’s friendship with America/Israel and India. The Pakistani nuclear assets are the third largest and are protected by 20,000 elite troops. This is a last ditch attempt by the Jewish Americans to malign Pakistan. Bin Laden had died during the Toora Boora bombing and his body was taken to Israel – he was an Israeli/CIA agent. The claim the Americans killed him is a big lie.

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  • RK
    Feb 15, 2012 - 10:16PM

    Pakistan lost its face due to the US operation. They did not have to if they were sincere in wanting to nail Osama. How can Pakistan try the doctor with treason ?. Treason is betraying one’s country, esp. by attempting to kill the sovereign or overthrow the government. By doing this Pakistan is owning Osama. They may have added advantages by keeping Osama alive. The game is over. Much of Pakistan’s leadership is bringing misery to their nationals. Much of Pakistan is in obvious confusion due to the foundation on which it stands. Any one who speaks for Obama speaks with cruel hate that their blind system propogates.

    The US should protect the doctor at all costs and not just award a medal.

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  • Salman Sheikh
    Feb 16, 2012 - 10:02AM

    @Truth Teller:
    So thats the case and why you think that every Pakistani is roaming around with terrorist??? And you think US is civilized society??

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  • search and research!
    Feb 16, 2012 - 3:15PM

    Pakistan is a great country. daily it provides the world with non stop comedy and non-sense!! The doc did pakistan good, and yert most pakistanis think he is a traitor.Only USA being a honest and faikthful country will not only honour the man, but give him US citizenship too!

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  • RK
    Feb 16, 2012 - 6:39PM

    @RK: Correction: “Any one who speaks for OSAMA speaks with cruel hate that their blind system propogates.”

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  • Raj - USA
    Feb 16, 2012 - 7:05PM

    @search and research!:
    Love your comment on the non stop comedy. !!!!!!

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  • Pandit Banya
    Mar 3, 2012 - 4:59AM

    Afridi committed a treasonous act of collaborating with a foreign nation. It is same as Indian Army nabbing Bijesh Kumar suspected of spying for Pakistan . Touche,

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