Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Pakistani ambassador’s departure under fire leaves void in US-Pakistani relations

Pakistani ambassador’s departure under fire leaves
WASHINGTON — The departure of Pakistan’s man in Washington, Ambassador Husain Haqqani, leaves U.S.-Pakistani relations temporarily adrift, with few trusted go-betweens after months of bruising political sparring that followed the Navy SEAL raid that killed Osama bin Laden.

Haqqani resigned Tuesday over what has become known as “memo-gate” — allegations that he sought U.S. help to head off a possible Pakistani military coup after the bin Laden operation.

Former information minister Sherry Rehman, an important player in President Asif Zardari’s ruling political party, was appointed Wednesday to replace Haqqani. With elections in Pakistan slated for March, however, Rehman will be diplomatically toothless if Zardari’s government falls.

Haqqani’s departure robs the two sides of a man who simultaneously was one of the Pakistani military’s biggest critics and a constant, needling thorn in Washington’s side, refusing American requests to expand the CIA’s drone campaign against militants or increase American intelligence personnel on the ground. Read More...


Post a Comment