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Terror on the Run? US Pulls Staff from Pakistan Consulate


Diplomats stationed at the US consulate in Lahore have been moved to Islamabad, Pakistan’s capital, because of a specific terrorist threat, American officials said Friday. It appears that this threat is separate from the one that caused the US to close down 19 other embassies and consulates this week. The US also advised Americans not to travel to Pakistan: “The presence of several foreign and indigenous terrorist groups poses a potential danger to U.S. citizens throughout Pakistan.”

There are some who say that the Obama administration overreacted to the intercepted al-Qaeda communications that caused the diplomatic closures. Without a security clearance, we can’t know much about whether or not the actions were warranted, but the truth of the matter is that the Obama administration’s assertions that the war on terror is over were plainly premature. Terror groups in Pakistan are causing the US to fear for the safety of its citizens and diplomats. Al-Qaeda is threatening enough to force the closure of diplomatic missions worldwide. “God is great! America is in a condition of terror and fear from Al-Qaeda,” a jihadist wrote in an online forum, as the NYT reported yesterday. “The mobilization and security precautions are costing them billions of dollars. We hope to hear more of such psychological warfare, even if there are no actual jihadi operations on the ground.”

In general, the Obama administration’s foreign policy work in difficult areas like the Middle East and Pakistan hasn’t lived up to its initial promise. Despite supposedly “warming” relations between the US and Pakistan after Secretary Kerry’s recent visit, the US is still no closer to finding a way to work with the Pakistani security establishment on its inability to deal with terrorist groups operating in Afghanistan and within Pakistan itself. Even more frustrating for the excellent US diplomats in difficult places like Pakistan, these threats and US reaction make it that much harder for them to do their jobs.

[Pakistani police and private security guards stand alert outside the US consulate in Lahore on August 9, 2013. Photo courtesy of Getty Images]

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  • Diggsc

    When you have a coward as President of the US, then you get cowardly decisions. It’s actually a pretty simple equation.

  • Misanthrope

    “hasn’t lived up to its initial promise”???
    You mean “has failed miserably, as knowledgeable people expected.”

    • Rick Caird

      One is hard pressed to find anything about Obama’s foreign policy that has worked at all.

  • cubanbob

    At the rate AQ is on the run in short order the call-to-prayer will be broadcast from the Oval Office.

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