Pakistan Doesn't Exactly Sound Thrilled at News of bin Laden's Death

Posted: May 02, 2011 9:47 AM
The news that Osama bin Laden was hiding out in a luxurious compound in an affluent town near a Pakistan military headquarters was surprising, to say the least. We'd hoped that American military power projections and at least a modicum of Pakistani support had relegated him to remote caves along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border.

The government of Pakistan wasn't told about last night's special operation to go deep into Pakistan territory to take out bin Laden. This morning, they don't exactly sound thrilled about being left in the dark. Here are their lukewarm reactions to the killing of bin Laden.

Pakistan Foreign Office

The death of bin Laden is a "major setback to terrorist organisations around the world".

"This operation was conducted by the US Forces in accordance with declared US policy that Osama bin Laden will be eliminated in a direct action by the US forces, wherever found in the world."

Yousuf Raza Gilani - Pakistani prime minister

We will not allow our soil to be used against any other country for terrorism and therefore I think it's a great victory, it's a success and I congratulate the success of this operation.

Ex-President of Pakistan and longtime American "ally" Pervez Musharraf was incensed and called it a violation of Pakistan's sovereignty.

"America coming to our territory and taking action is a violation of our sovereignty. Handling and execution of the operation (by US forces) is not correct. The Pakistani government should have been kept in the loop," Musharraf told CNN-IBN in an exclusive interview.

"Foreign troops crossing the border into Pakistan will not be liked by the people of Pakistan. US forces should not have crossed over into Pakistan," he said.

He rubbished speculations that some Pakistani authorities were helping bin Laden and they helped him during his stay in Abbottabad, which incidentally also has the Pakistan Military Academy.

"Incidentally," indeed. Looking back, the close cooperation of the Bush Administration and the gentle toleration of the Musharraf regime for the majority of Bush's time in office may need to be reconsidered. It sounds like one of the keys to the success of this operation was keeping everyone, and that includes the Pakistan government, out of the loop.