Bush Approves Pakistan Raids
CNN reported that U.S. special forces will be conducting ground assaults inside Pakistan without Islamabad's approval, after given authorization from President Bush.
A senior American intelligence official said Thursday, "We have had the president's OK for months." The official, whose identity has been kept private due to the classified order, would not get into detail on the exact circumstances of the order.
The official told CNN that Pakistan's leaders will be notified during an assault or after the fact although "most definitely after a decision has been made and things are set in motion."
The news of the ground assaults came a day after a statement from Pakistan's armed forces chief indicating that no foreign forces will be allowed to operate inside Pakistan.
Last week a senior U.S. official announced that U.S. helicopters dropped troops in the village of Angoor in South Waziristan, a border of Afghanistan. The U.S. official said there may have been a small number of women and children in the nearby area.
In a press conference on Wednesday, Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said the U.S. and Pakistan must increase cooperation to battle al Qaeda and Taliban militants that are using areas along Pakistan's border with Afghanistan as a safe haven.
"In my view, these two nations are inextricably linked in a common insurgency that crosses the border between them," Mullen said.