US frustration with `intransigent` Pak spills over

The frustration being faced by US after failing to mend ties with Pak was reflected during Clinton`s meeting with Zardari at the NATO summit.

Updated: May 28, 2012, 13:55 PM IST

Washington: The frustration being faced by the United States after failing to mend ties with Pakistan was reflected during US State Secretary Hillary Clinton`s meeting with Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari at the NATO summit in Chicago last week.

Clinton bluntly told Zardari that the only way countries have defeated insurgencies like the ones threatening Pakistan and its neighbor was by "forging national unity and exercising political will", reports the New York Times.

"It`s going to take leadership. It`s going to take leadership from you and others," she told Zardari.

Most of Zardari`s meeting with Clinton was spent on his difficulties in unifying the country`s political blocs, the paper states.

"We don`t have the resources or control over these groups," he said, referring to militants based in Pakistan`s borderlands.

He added, "We`re backed into a corner because you haven`t apologised" for a NATO attack in November that killed 24 Pakistani soldiers at an outpost on the border with Afghanistan.

Zardari`s visit to the summit not only failed to resolve a six-month deadlock over the transportation of supplies to Afghanistan, but it also underscored the distrust and political chasms in an uneasy alliance that is central to a US plan to end the war in Afghanistan, reports the paper.

Relations between both countries have only worsened since then. On three days last week, American drones fired missiles at "insurgent hide-outs" in northwestern Pakistan, ignoring demands by Pakistan`s Parliament to end the strikes altogether.

The failed diplomacy highlighted the inability of both countries to repair a relationship that was badly frayed by a secret raid that killed Al-Qaeda chief Osama Bin Laden on May 2, 2011, and then was further ruptured by the NATO attack on a border check post in November. It raises questions over whether a more limited security relationship between the two countries is even possible, the paper said.