Talks between US, Pakistan fail: Report

By AFP
Published: April 28, 2012

The New York Times says US special envoy to Afghanistan and Pakistan Marc Grossman left the Pakistani capital Friday night with no agreement. PHOTO: ISPR/FILE

WASHINGTON: High-level talks on ending a diplomatic deadlock between the United States and Pakistan have ended in failure over Pakistani demands for an apology from the United States, The New York Times reported Saturday.

The newspaper said US special envoy to Afghanistan and Pakistan Marc Grossman left Islamabad Friday night with no agreement.

The departure followed two days of discussions aimed at patching up the damage caused by a US air strike last November that killed 24 Pakistani soldiers on the Afghanistan border, the report said.

The United States refuses to apologise for the strike.

The incident has damaged the precarious US-Pakistani partnership and provoked outrage in Islamabad, which has retaliated by cutting off NATO supply routes to Afghanistan.

The United States and Pakistan disagree about the precise sequence of events in the deadliest single cross-border attack of the 10-year war in Afghanistan.

Pakistan denies shooting first, and has accused the Americans of an intentional attack on its troops.

The administration of President Barack Obama had been seriously debating whether to say “I’m sorry” to Pakistan’s satisfaction – until April 15, when multiple simultaneous attacks struck Kabul and other Afghan cities, The Times said.

“What changed was the 15th of April,” the paper quotes an unnamed senior administration official as saying.

US military and intelligence officials concluded that the attacks were directed by the Haqqani network, a group working from a base in North Waziristan in Pakistan’s tribal belt, the report said.

That swung the raging debate on whether Obama or another senior US official should go beyond the expression of regret that the administration had already given, and apologise, the paper said.

Without the apology, Pakistani officials say they cannot reopen the NATO supply routes into Afghanistan that have been closed since November, the report said.

The United States, in turn, is withholding from Pakistan between $1.18 billion and $3 billion (2.26 billion euros) of promised military aid.

The continuing deadlock does not bode well for Pakistan’s attendance at a NATO meeting in Chicago in three weeks, assuming it is even invited, The Times said.

US administration officials acknowledged Friday that the stalemate would not be resolved quickly, the paper noted.

Reader Comments (71)

  • Umar
    Apr 28, 2012 - 12:07PM

    The Americans will use every bogeyman they can find not to make an apology. They are killing Pakistanis.

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  • Umar
    Apr 28, 2012 - 12:14PM

    The hatred for Pakistanis has been institutionalized by the American government in the United States. Americans have been socialized just like the people in North Korea and they believe everything their government tells them. By continuing to say that “terrorists” are being killed, Americans have come to slowly believe that Pakistanis are enemies of the United States. The fact remains that hundreds of civilians have been killed with no recourse for them.

    The American government will use every straw-man they can find to continue to justify clear violations of international law. This is a tragedy.

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  • Anon
    Apr 28, 2012 - 12:23PM

    good lets hope they remain failed. we dont want to restore nato supplies.

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  • Shahbaz Senior
    Apr 28, 2012 - 12:29PM

    not willing to believe this BS please… We know the truth! Pak Army is already working with the USA

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  • amer nadeem
    Apr 28, 2012 - 12:51PM

    that’s why USA likes & support dictators in Pakistan, whereas their relations always strain with democratic governments whether its Butto in 70s, Banazir & Nawaz in 90s or now present regime, its far easy to pet a single one in military dictator’s rule rather negotiate with parliament/people’s elected Govts….

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  • Ashraf P
    Apr 28, 2012 - 1:06PM

    Let us be realistic here. How many times has Pakistan apologized for aiding and abetting the Haqqani network against the coalition forces? There is a reason why the US refuses to apologize and I suspect most people know it.

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  • Nasir
    Apr 28, 2012 - 1:14PM

    Pakistan’s strict demand for an apology from the US shows that the incident of last November was truly an intentional attack by the US to give a message to Pakistan. However, Pakistan’s response was unpredictable to everyone. Now the US is in hot water on NATO supply and unable to convince Pakistan. Let us see how NATO can have save safe exit without Pakistan.

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  • Tariq
    Apr 28, 2012 - 1:15PM

    Good for Pakistan

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  • Parvez
    Apr 28, 2012 - 1:17PM

    We seem to have realised that we do have a back-bone.

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  • butt jee
    Apr 28, 2012 - 1:20PM

    Pakistan has a principled stance which is based on morality and political authority provided by the parliament. Hence no compromise.

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  • Acorn Guts
    Apr 28, 2012 - 1:30PM

    Let them come again & again till they say sorry. Forget about the aid and monies the Americans are withholding, honestly speaking the people of this country are so far in the dumps already that no $3billion will give us any relief.

    So forget the money, it will never reach us but please please please save us our dignity, that’s one thing we’ve still got and would like to keep.

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  • Apr 28, 2012 - 1:42PM

    invitation to chicago conference is bait and pakistan fully understands that.

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  • mani
    Apr 28, 2012 - 1:53PM

    time to show cajones!

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  • Prabhat Pal
    Apr 28, 2012 - 1:54PM

    The photo spells clearly, the role of Hina Rabbani Khar or even the PM, as far as foreign policy is concerned.

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  • BlackJack
    Apr 28, 2012 - 1:54PM

    To all those who imagine that the US is desperate to reopen the NATO supply routes – this is a reality check. You are pushing yourselves further into a corner by allowing movements like the Difa-e-Pakistan to dictate public policy without winning elections – and by giving a motley bunch of legislators the power to scuttle possibly the most important bilateral relationship that Pakistan has today. This entire exercise should have been conducted under the wraps shortly after the Salala incident instead of under the glare of media lights; in this election year, the US has no option but to act tough with Pakistan, which is increasingly seen by the US public as a counter-productive element in the Afghan war, while staying dependent on the West for economic survival.

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  • BlackJack
    Apr 28, 2012 - 1:56PM

    Just to add to my earlier comment, pls understand that the US already knew of the Pak demands before it came in for this meeting – after all, it has been covered extensively in the media, and the US has its own sources in the Pak system (and possibly everywhere else). It came to this meeting to decline publicly – and therein lies the message.

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  • Hakeem
    Apr 28, 2012 - 2:03PM

    Anyway the air corridor supply rout is open since November, allowing NATO supply..

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  • Ameer
    Apr 28, 2012 - 2:07PM

    They can apologize to shahrukh khan but not Pakistan! Bravo!Recommend

  • habib
    Apr 28, 2012 - 2:09PM

    Just be firm with the individuals,people or Countries who damage Pakistan and its people who ever they are and were ever they belong to.It has become a routine to have their way and then runaway, cowards can not even have the courage to apologies for their gross mistake and think they can buy it off with pennies.This is the perfect example of SATIN, too stiff a neck to apologies,what a teaching for their country citizen’s,its a complete white wash down the waste drain.

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  • khan
    Apr 28, 2012 - 2:17PM

    It for US to realise the consequences too, for Pakistan it is question of dignity which can not be sacrificed for some dollars or fake status in a meaningless conference. Without Pakistan and Iran, Afghan solution is a mirage. Earlier it is dumped, better it is for US.

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  • I LOVE PAKISTAN!!!!!!!!!!
    Apr 28, 2012 - 2:25PM

    *****W***e are Muslims and Muslims are always brave and virtuous, are honored everywhere .Relation of Pakistan with other countries at each level should be based on mutual cooperation and respect. As far as the concept of Pakistan’s sovereignty is concerned,it should be given due importance by the international community. November 2011′s attack on Salala check post was intentional and of course an act of violation of Pakistan’s sovereignty. In this regard, Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani has also given great remarks.********Recommend

  • The Truth
    Apr 28, 2012 - 2:26PM

    Notice that the aid mentioned is Military aid. The common man in Pakistan is used to going without, but those in uniform are not. Once the Army has to do some belt tightening, they will quickly come around to the idea of reopening supply routes. What I think most Pakistani’s fail to understand is that NATO is not the US, its also the Brits, the Germans and the French all working under a United Nations mandate.in this case Pakistan only makes itself look foolish by acting like a stubborn, spoiled child. Open the supply routes, tax it, and fix our roads, clean the streets and hire police officers who do their jobs. In my humble opinion.

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  • Concerned
    Apr 28, 2012 - 2:27PM

    Pakistan hard stance on the border incident was understandably justified and a clear cut message was conveyed to US. However, the same is being stretched beyond reasonble parameters of diplomatic norms which may harm Pakistan in long term future interest of financial aid and military hardware supplied by US to this country. Moreover, Pakistan too is giving support to Afghan Taleban which US alleges to have resulted in many deaths of its servicemen. Therefore a more pragmatic approach needs to be taken by Pakistan since it still requires US civil and military assistance beyond 2014.

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  • Bhindian
    Apr 28, 2012 - 2:54PM

    excellent news for Pakistan.

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  • ayesha_khan
    Apr 28, 2012 - 2:57PM

    Hina Rabani Khar said that military’s role in foreign policy is receding. This photo confirms her statement.

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  • Kailash sethy
    Apr 28, 2012 - 3:25PM

    @Ameer:
    It’s a creation of Indian media. First they hype the story as SRK humiliated/detained. They they headline the story as if US apologized. It never did

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  • syed baqar ahsan
    Apr 28, 2012 - 3:46PM

    Actually Pakistan knows the worth of USA in this region ,how they have been playing for decades on our shoulders and kept on begging bowl ,retarded with apologetic approach so it is only harmful to USA not for us.we are immune to suffering.

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  • mani
    Apr 28, 2012 - 3:54PM

    @Prabhat Pal:
    we’re glad the pm has nothing to do with the foreign policy

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  • Travian
    Apr 28, 2012 - 3:54PM

    The Americans have already paid pakistan for its games. If pakistan does not allow the americans to play further, they should be the ones saying sorry for taking payment for services not rendered.

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  • A2Z
    Apr 28, 2012 - 4:04PM

    The so called intellectuals don’t like to read the caption but love to comment. ET used this photo but NY Times got another photo. This is file photo not the picture of actual meeting.

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  • Truth Hurts
    Apr 28, 2012 - 4:09PM

    @ayesha_khan:
    So you want the corupt politicians to hold talks with the americans… open NATO supplies in return of some dollars? Begeirat Brigade!!

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  • Sheikh A. Bukhara
    Apr 28, 2012 - 4:14PM

    Yes apparently we now have a backbone, but we don’t have any clothes on (nearly bankrupt). So what’s the plan. Because many of our clothes come from the US, directly or indirectly.

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  • vasan
    Apr 28, 2012 - 4:36PM

    I am disappointed that the talks failed. People have to realize that when talks succeed, some or many objectives for both the countries are achieved. When they fail, it is not good for both the countries because nothing was achieved for both the countries.

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  • Freedom Seeker
    Apr 28, 2012 - 4:48PM

    Road of respect and dignity is always tough. Its Beghairat who gets free lunch and shoes together. Its great news for all of us. We need to be tough to get our national interest. Moreover Pakistan must ask to emit Pakistani companies involved in Iran Pakistan gas pipe line project from American sanctions.

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  • Iron hand
    Apr 28, 2012 - 4:50PM

    @Umar: The hatred of Pakistanis toward Americans far exceeds the hatred of Americans toward Pakistanis, but the gap is narrowing.

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  • Iron hand
    Apr 28, 2012 - 4:57PM

    The Americans deny the attack was intentional. The Pakistanis claim it was. Never the twain shall meet.

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  • Babloo
    Apr 28, 2012 - 5:03PM

    What happened to the national position that drone strikes must stop before NATO supplies resume ? So all that is now asked is an apology !!

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  • mussarat ahmedzeb
    Apr 28, 2012 - 5:07PM

    talks with whom has failed Gov?do we have a Gov?a convicted PM? USA do have talks when the Gov is formed right now Pakistan Zardari Party(PZP) are busy becoming a siyasi shaheed.

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  • MyHeartSpeaks
    Apr 28, 2012 - 5:11PM

    @ Ashraf P Lol. funny. You seems to be an ‘insider’ of US govt. and you know someone who is an ‘insider’ of US govt. who knows the reason of not apologizing on Salala incident. You told what US haven’t told to Pakistan govt. Get some life man and realize that US is doing wrong by not apologizing to her partner.

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  • Mo!
    Apr 28, 2012 - 5:53PM

    How come the US agrees to apologise for detaining Shahrukh Khan at the airport, for not more then 2 hours and when 24 Pakistani soldiers are killed in an unprovoked strike, the US refuses to apologise?

    Are they taking the Pakistani government and it’s people for granted? They feel they can bully us around as much as they wish, and we won’t be able to retaliate or defend ourselves and our nation.

    And as far as Hina Rabbani Khar’s statement is concerned, yes, Pakistani Armed forces do interfere in the foreign policy making because they realise that these politicians are sold for peanuts. All they want is to fill their own bank accounts on the expense of compromising this great nation’s sovereignty. This nation is surviving on the shoulders of it’s armed forces, today.

    Pakistan should never open the NATO route unless the US offers an unconditional public apology.Recommend

  • Mo!
    Apr 28, 2012 - 5:57PM

    @The Truth:
    May be you don’t understand that innocent Pakistani soldiers were attacked by the NATO forces, therefore, we have closed the NATO route to Afghanistan. Because US is at the forefront of the so called war against terrorism, it is understandable that Pakistan is irritated with them. And that is why, negotiations (or as they put it) with the US are underway.

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  • faraz
    Apr 28, 2012 - 5:58PM

    @Truth Hurts

    No politician was incharge when country entered into alliance with US during SEATO CENTO, Afghan jihad or war on terror. The army is built on US money. Which world are you living in

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  • Rao
    Apr 28, 2012 - 6:04PM

    The US should say sorry to the victim families insetad of the Government or military.
    And Pakistani Governmnet or Establishment should not make it the question of ego,because ego and self deminished when they were invited by Mushrraf.
    So be peaceful,and ask the Obama’s governemnt to pay DAYYAT to the familyies those have lost their beloved ones.

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  • Naresh
    Apr 28, 2012 - 6:05PM

    .
    No matter what else happens, in due course the United States will have to make an Apology.
    .
    Patience is a Virtue.
    .
    Cheers

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  • Who blinks first
    Apr 28, 2012 - 6:21PM

    Both parties are playing a game of chicken in full glare of the media, eying each other, and seeing who blinks first!

    Whoever blinks first loses!

    Election year in both countries – no one wants to give ammo to their political rivals. All politics is local, as they say.

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  • bangash
    Apr 28, 2012 - 6:22PM

    Bad relations with Baluch, with India, with Afghanistan, and now the US. Pakistani military excels in creating enemies.

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  • Baba Ji
    Apr 28, 2012 - 6:51PM

    Excellent !!!

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  • sandip
    Apr 28, 2012 - 7:15PM

    @Parvez: It’s good that the leaders have realized that. What they must also realize is how to protect it. Trying to lift a huge weight, well beyond the capacity of the back-bone, is sure to break it. And that is going to be very painful indeed, if not outright fatal.

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  • Travian
    Apr 28, 2012 - 7:16PM

    Why is this even news. Who really cares about a failed state!

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  • naeem khan Manhattan,Kansas.
    Apr 28, 2012 - 7:17PM

    PPP has plethora of conniving politicians and they would have done better job to hoodwink the Americans, these guys do this stuff day in and day out in Pakistan and Americans are no match for them.Foreign policy should be the domain of foreign service headed by an elected civilian. It is not Army’s job to be negotiating with foreign governments, perhaps the above picture is misleading us. Why stuck on apology, it is election time in US and Obama wants to portray a tough macho president, give him some slack and negotiate hard, they need the supply route and Pakistanis should calculate whats costing them using the Northern Supply Route and charge them close to that figure.It is all about hegemony and money and Americans want it that way and in the process will pay the price for it.My concern is that the money will not be spent on repairing roads and other infra-structure but will be utilized for un-necessary junkets that Pakistani President and PM are so used to it. Pakistanis know as well the Americans that it was a deliberate attack but it is the government which is allowing the NATO( read Americans) to strike in Pakistan daily, they are the ones to be blamed for Salala attacks. Do you see any daily attacks on Iran?

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  • Cautious
    Apr 28, 2012 - 7:25PM

    “What changed was the 15th of April,”

    When you provide sanctuary to terrorist you have to live with the consequences of their actions — it’s one of the consequences of being perceived as siding with the bad guys.

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  • sandip
    Apr 28, 2012 - 7:32PM

    @Sheikh A. Bukhara: Good point. But more importantly, many of Pakistan’s clothes got o the US. I wonder what the constellation of Pakistani generals would do if the NATO countries were to ban imports of Pakistani textile products till the supply lines were opened? All pakistanis who derive their livelihood from the textile industry should be mighty worried indeed.

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  • SM
    Apr 28, 2012 - 8:51PM

    Every other day is a date that changes everything.. First it was 9/11 now it is April 15th… They are all excuses to pressure others whether it be Pakistan or the rest of the world.

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  • major-ji
    Apr 28, 2012 - 9:18PM

    By the way where is Pakistani FM, who recently made a tall claim, now she is dealing with important foreign policy issues. Picture carried by ET shows only military top brass on pakistani side compared to civil elite of US.

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  • Love Pakistan
    Apr 28, 2012 - 9:18PM

    @Umar:
    Just check newspaper in Pakistan which after a drone attack publishes the dead are terrorists. Not even a single news is about civilian causalities. In fact drone attacks have helped to route out these enemies of humanity.

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  • Sonya
    Apr 28, 2012 - 9:52PM

    @Umar: in fact sports killing of Pakistanis and afghanis!

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  • Sandip
    Apr 28, 2012 - 9:56PM

    The picture, even though this is a file picture, is very telling indeed. It clearly shows who are the actual wielders of power behind the facade of civilian government. And therefore it is very surprising that the blame for foreign policy decisions are laid at the footsteps of the civilian leaders. If any, they should be blamed for not being the ones taking the decisions. They must force the military to obey the orders. If they refuse, the military leadership should be shown the door. This process must be continued till they realize that there is no option but to subordinate to the civilian leadership. And the people should then hold the civilian leaders accountable for their actions. But this charade of civilian rule must be stopped and effective power wielded by the civilians.

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  • Ali Tanoli.
    Apr 28, 2012 - 10:46PM

    Apology for soldiers but not for Drones and civilions who get caught between that???

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  • G. Din
    Apr 28, 2012 - 11:03PM

    @Naresh:
    “No matter what else happens, in due course the United States will have to make an Apology.
    .
    Patience is a Virtue.”

    Apology delayed is one more apology denied and loses all meaning. May be that is the whole idea. Patience is not a virtue, in this case!

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  • Organ of Big Profit
    Apr 28, 2012 - 11:50PM

    I don;t care what the Americans want. I want to pursue my own selfish interest in order to beat the best and become the best! hehe hehe hehe

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  • ShiasishiaQuetta
    Apr 29, 2012 - 12:01AM

    This is bad for business community. I think now all the businesses will pull out of Pakistan and invest in Bangladesh Cambodia vietnam or Indonesia. Very scary situation we are going down everyday because of our enmity with west.

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  • Dr Jamil Chaudri
    Apr 29, 2012 - 1:12AM

    @BlackJack:
    Salutations, Mr BlackJack.
    .
    Your assertion that it is Difa-e-Pakia, or similar movements, are the basis of the Paki stand is totally unsubstantiated; on the contrary the present Paki stand might well be based on the EXPERIENCE OF THE PAKI PEOPLE.
    .
    In any case, as a Paki-American I can tell you the Difa crowd is NO MORE (and perhaps no less) influencing policy in Pakia than the Tea Partiers are doing in the USA; motely legislators exist in every country: examples include a video on youtube, where Mr Gohmet “goes berserk on Anderson Cooper”; or listening to the rants of Congressman Rohrabacher.
    .
    Your second posting takes the plumb for inflammatory assertions. “US already knew of Paki demands …. It came to the meeting to decline publicly – and therein lies a message”. What message? US is demanding UNCONDITIONAL surrender, helped by some of the “motely” Paki legislators who might have made a Faustian Pact to sell their nation for Bank accounts in Switzerland.

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  • Dr Jamil Chaudri
    Apr 29, 2012 - 1:49AM

    @The Truth:
    “The Truth”, Salutations.
    .
    NATO was created as a DEFENSIVE pact to deter Soviet invasion. Since the demise of the Soviet Union, NATO has become a band of RELUCTANT mercenaries. In the First Iraq war, when the French declined to participate, America changed the name of “French Fries” to “Liberty Fries”, and unlimited invective against the French. France half-learnt a lesson. These mercenaries go anywhere told to report for duty, for not going would get them into trouble. At heart they are against occupation of other countries.
    .
    As for your example of spoilt children: INDEED ONLY A SPOILT CHILD DOES NOT apologise when it has done something wrong deliberately or inadvertently: President Obama should apologise, for it is not only a question of common courtesy but also an American norm.
    .
    On the other hand, the Supply Route should be open, but subject to charge. The charge should be the construction of Railway lines between Quetta and Qhandar and between Landi Kotal and Kabul. The contract could also include the provision that in emergency situation America could have up to 30% of the capacity of the railroad. The railroad could be name “America Gift to the United Islamic Republics”, and become commonly known as the Gift Railroad.

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  • Sher khan
    Apr 29, 2012 - 2:33AM

    Overseas Pakistanus send 15 bill $ a year to Pakistan, more than 10 times the aid given by us in a year, hold your politicians accountable , Pakistan has enough to survive, don’t listen to what u hear, be rational yourself my fellow PakistanisRecommend

  • Adam
    Apr 29, 2012 - 3:45AM

    It is part of the game, it is not the first time that happend in the history of Pak-US relations. You will be sorry for your comments later. All you need to check reality first before you comment. Think before you speak.

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  • Nitin
    Apr 29, 2012 - 6:20AM

    @Kailash sethy:
    Nonsense. Read the huffington post April 28th and the story about shah rukh khan being detained and the us embassy apologizing to Sri is right there. But why would you believe it? Next, you will say that huffington post is run by Hindu zionists

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  • alicia
    Apr 29, 2012 - 11:35AM

    @Travian
    This is a Pakistani newspaper that contains news about pakistan. If you don’t want to read about pakistan then stop trolling Recommend

  • Ahmer Ali
    Apr 29, 2012 - 1:11PM

    Corrupt,beggars and slaves leaders formal and serious apologetic letter or attitude from the US’ leaders is so far you are the greatest,most appreciable and admirable if you are succeeded to convince and coerce the US’ leaders to accept this reality and truth honestly,sincerely and seriously before the world and US’ leaders admit and this shall be yours greatest victory and achievement that the Salala check post’s attack was intentional.

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  • Angela Merkel
    Apr 29, 2012 - 4:10PM

    The Express Tribune regularly refuses to post any reader comment that effectively silences Pakistani liberals, Americans and Indians. Not surprising; this is an American controlled (sorry, I meant “liberal”) newspaper that is the Pakistani partner of NY Times global partner the International Herald Tribune.

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  • SM
    Apr 29, 2012 - 8:16PM

    @Angela Merkel:
    And US Centcom monitors and even replies on this paper…

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  • How?
    Apr 30, 2012 - 1:04AM

    @Angela Merkel:
    Yesterday Hu Jintao and today Angela Merkel.

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