Pakistan Imprisons Key Informant in Bin Laden Raid


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A Pakistani court has found Shakil Afridi—the Pakistani physician who was instrumental in helping the CIA confirm the whereabouts of Osama bin Laden—guilty of treason. For his crimes—for doing what the Pakistani government should have done years ago—Afridi has been sentenced to 33 years in prison. Although Washington has politely requested Afridi’s release, there appears to be no action or force behind the diplomatic niceties. In fact, it appears Washington has kicked another friend to the curb. Sadly, this has become a common occurrence in the Age of Obama.

Before getting into the full litany of the president’s “oh well” approach to friends and allies, let’s stay with the Afridi situation for a moment. First, on its face, this is a travesty of justice—even according to Pakistani law. After all, if this man is guilty of treason for collaborating with the CIA, what about the Pakistani military’s on-again-off-again collaboration with the CIA and DoD? Are Pakistan’s president and generals going to be jailed for decades for their cooperation—albeit halfhearted or perhaps quarter-hearted—with Washington?

More importantly, we shouldn’t lose sight of the central fact that Afridi helped bring the world’s most notorious, most wanted, most infamous mass-murderer to justice. The trial of Afridi and the verdict reveal just how broken Pakistan is—something many observers, including myself, have pointed out for many years (here, here, here and here). If the best we can hope for is a transactional, interests-only relationship with Islamabad, then someone in the Obama administration needs to ask—amid Pakistan’s treatment of Afridi, sheltering of bin Laden, aiding of the Haqqani network and Taliban, outing of U.S. operatives, blockading of Afghanistan-bound equipment, firing on U.S. forces across the AfPak border—what exactly the United States is getting in the exchange.

If Washington had a sense of honor, it would demand Afridi’s release by a date certain and allow Islamabad to contemplate the consequences of not complying—a cutoff in aid, an expulsion of Pakistan’s diplomatic corps, a public unveiling and shaming of Pakistan’s duplicitous military-intelligence apparatus, another U.S. raid into the country.

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  • Bamaguje

    Unless Bin Laden was in cahoots with the Pakistani government, how does aiding the capture of the world's most dangerous terrorist amount to treason?

    As for Libya, Obama had no business violating the War Power Act, illegally waging war without congressional approval against a nation that posed no threat whatsoever to America.
    The north African nation has known no peace since then, with out-of-control armed militias running amok, refusing to disarm and perpetrating heinous atrocities that has Amnesty International calling for investigation.

  • PhillipGaley

    "just how broken Pakistan is"? "just how broken Pakistan is"? But then, our dear author mentions just a few things which show something of just how broken the USA, is, . . .

    I kind of think that, the USA is spreading her legs, so to speak, positioning herself to be laughed at in a looming and rushing day of calamity, . . .

  • Rifleman

    Obama is just sending a clear message to anyone that might consider helping the USA in the future. Democrats leave American allies twisting in the breeze every chance they get. They're also pretty consistent about bending over ("more flexibility") for Americas enemies.

  • logdon

    Ever been in one of those, 'The Trial' episodes of life? You know when everything seems to conspire against you and each day it piles up and often with an element of state bureaucracy thrown in just to cruelly max up the battering mix.

    You've played it right, stuck to the rules yet somehow it sneaks up on your moments of content and it's, here we go. Yet again, the sucker punch.

    Most times it ends just like an adventure movie with a begrimed hero miraculously emerging from the quicksand, muddy, disheveled and gasping but with a lopsided grin and a wry quip.

    Now transfer that, multiplied by whatever figure you may imagine and plonk the scenario onto this poor devil. No magic release, never mind the wry quips from him

    On every level he is betrayed, cast aside and placed at the mercy of a judicial system which makes Abu Ghraib look like a Bahamas cruise.

    I'm struggling to imagine how he contains his rationality amidst the fizzing and the fury and the fear which must contaminate his consciousness and turn many into babbling mush.

    Most of us can withstand an element of pain and can even kind of rationalise our way out of deception, but this?

    It is politics of the worst kind and when Muslims favourable to the West watch what happens when they plant their mental flags on the side of a supposed free and fearless USA what will their conclusions be?

    In a way, and for some it may be a stretch but this also reminds me of Molly Norris.

    She is the Seattle graphic designer who believing in the sanctity of the First Amendment decided to enhance the ridiculousness of the withdrawal of an episode of South Park with Mohammed in a bear costume.

    Her Let’s Draw Mohammed Day illustrated him as various household objects (in other words, ironically yet in accordance with the non depiction rulings, not showing him at all) drew the ire of the Islamists and for her attempt at throwing a little whimsy on to the heat, she’s now living in a witness protection programme.

    This is in America? Another betrayal? She’s the one incarcerated whilst the threateners go scott free.

    However, she’s lucky if we can call it that for the small mercy of the tidbit of living an anonymous existence, apart from family, a mere pseudonym in some dusty town and a bleak shadow of her former life but not quite shackled in the literary sense of Shakil Afredi.

    Meanwhile Obama plays golf.

  • AfraidforAmerica

    I hope someone makes a big deal about this story. Maybe, just maybe, some of the Obama lemmings will get it thru their head that he – and his administration – cannot be trusted. I literally get sick to my stomach now reading story after story about what a slimey snake Obama is and then hearing how many people back him up.

  • http://apollospaeks.blogtownhall.com/ ApolloSpeaks

    THE IMPRISONING OF DR. SHAKIL AFRIDI IS ON OBAMA'S HEAD

    In September 2010 the CIA team surveiling Osama bin Laden's compound at Abbottabad-bin Laden's courier had led them there-had determined that a high value terrorist target was living inside who was most likely bin Ladin. But no, it wasn't good enough for our timid, overcautious, amateur president. He wanted absolute proof that bin Laden was there before ordering a raid or decimating the place. October, November, December, January, February, March go by and the CIA have no new information identifying the target. Fearing that Obama's indecision and dithering were putting the mission at risk a desperate CIA hatches an ingenious plan: they recruit Dr. Shakil Afridi to collect DNA samples from the children in the compound to determine if they were bin Laden's kids. He got the samples, they tested positive and now the 50 year old doctor has been convicted of treason by a Pakistani court and sentenced to 33 years because of Obama's cowardly stupid dithering.

    continued

  • http://apollospaeks.blogtownhall.com/ ApolloSpeaks

    Indeed, it would have been enough for any reasonable, responsible, decisive commander and chief to quickly seize the chance to capture or kill ASAP any high value terrorist enemy of the US once his whereabouts were known. What if the dweller in the compound was planning a mass murder attack on the US mainland? Or a deadly operation against US troops in Afghanistan? What difference would it have made if it weren't bin Laden? Instead, what if it were Al-Zawahiri in the building, bin Laden's number two man? or someone further down the chain like Hassan Izz-Al-Din or Abdul Abdullah? If John McCain were President (or Bush had continued in office) it is likely that the compound would have been raided or destroyed by late October or early November months before Obama got up the nerve to act. I wonder, will Obama's Hollywood friends put this in his propaganda film?

    Click my name to read the rest of this piece.

  • Frank S

    Time for another Obama apology. To the family of Afridi. Dear Mrs. Afridi. I am running for re-election. I can't make waves. If and when your husband ever gets out of the hell hole he will be in, call me. In the mean time, I will send an extra billion dollars to Pakistan. Maybe they will use part of the money to update your husband's cell.That would be nice, wouldn't it? Right now I am worried about eliminating a real threat – Mitt Romney. I don't have any time for anything else. BO

  • http://apollospaeks.blogtownhall.com/ ApolloSpeaks

    ATTENTION ALAN DOWD

    Dr. Afridi was not a "key informant" on OBL for the CIA. According the Peter Bergen's latest book he failed to obtain any DNA samples from OBL's kids.

    Click my name and learn more.

  • ordman

    So Obama just how in the F@#K are you going to blame Bush for this one? Bet if the Pakistani doctor was in a union that he would have already sent in the Marines. Obama the cluster F@#k in chief.

  • RoguePatriot6

    Hmmmmm…..What does this say about Pakistan our "close ally in the fight against terrorism". __First, I'm going to NOT be PC and tell you that it's really not a fight at all against terrorism, it's a fight against the radical ideology of Islam. Islam rules in Pakistan, therefore anyone who helps the infidel is a traitor. This man is lucky to he didn't get the death sentence. I'm sure in most Islamic Republics he probably would. _What it does say about Pakistan is what most of us with a brain would say. They can't be trusted, period.

  • Ghostwriter

    If Pakistan complains about the negative image it's receiving in the United States,someone should tell them to look in the mirror. It's their own fault,not ours.

  • kafirman

    Barry Soetoro reveres Muhammad, not "nature and nature's God" (quote from The Declaration of Independence).

  • marios

    Obama are using and then selling all of those who supported him. Rev. Jeremia Wright, who as BHO said was "like his kind uncle", his mentor for 20 years… BHO is DICTATOR. What he wants is only Power. But look how many Americans just blindly dedicated to him. It is our MSM deserts. MSM controlled by Democraps (90%) created Obama's cult. Socialism always characterized by Leader cult: Stalin who killed about 40 ML their own people in peace time, Mao-zge Doung, Fidel Castro, Pol Pot…Each of them mass murderers and each of them had cult of their personality. Obama did not accomplished any of his promisses except one: he couped to transform country to socialistic one for 3.5 years. Many Americans who never lived under communists rule don't notice it yet.