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Pakistan to US: Don't surge in Afghanistan, talk to Taliban

Pakistan contradicts US Gen. McChrystal's strategy of pulling back from Afghanistan borders, and disagrees with the strategy of a surge to defeat the Taliban.

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The Pakistani government has some advice the Obama administration may not want to hear as it contemplates sending additional US troops to neighboring Afghanistan: Negotiate with Taliban leaders and restrain India.

Pakistan embraces US efforts to stabilize the region and worries that a hasty US withdrawal would create chaos. But Pakistani officials worry that thousands of additional American soldiers and Marines would send Taliban forces retreating into Pakistan, where they're not welcome.

Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani's office said Friday that he told visiting CIA Director Leon Panetta of "Pakistan's concerns relating to the possible surge of the US and ISAF forces in Afghanistan which may entail negative implications for the situation in Baluchistan," the Pakistani province that borders Afghanistan to the south.

The Pakistanis' advice is almost diametrically opposed to the strategy outlined by Army Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the US military commander in Afghanistan: Don't send additional forces to protect Afghan cities, but send them to outposts along the Pakistani border — where McChrystal has withdrawn troops.


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