Pakistan's President Pervez Musharraf tells CBS that after the September 11 attacks the United States threatened to bomb Pakistan if it did not cooperate with America's campaign against the Taliban in Afghanistan:
Musharraf, in an interview with CBS news magazine show "60 Minutes" that will air on Sunday, said the threat came from Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage and was given to Musharraf's intelligence director.
"The intelligence director told me that (Armitage) said, 'Be prepared to be bombed. Be prepared to go back to the Stone Age,"' Musharraf said. "I think it was a very rude remark."
[. . .]
The Pakistani leader, whose remarks were distributed to the media by CBS, said he reacted to the threat in a responsible way. "One has to think and take actions in the interest of the nation, and that's what I did," Musharraf said.
Pakistan was one of the only countries in the world to maintain relations with the Taliban, which was harboring al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden. Pakistan's infamous intelligence service, the ISI, is widely credited with supporting the Taliban. Taking Pakistan's support for the Taliban along with its recent peace deal that effectively cedes Waziristan to terrorist factions, the release of thousands of Taliban fighters, and its function as a rich supply of replacements for the Taliban fighters killed by Coalition forces, I wonder whether we wouldn't have been better off in the long run if Musharraf had rejected Armitage's "offer."
Musharraf's complaint certainly explains why Pakistan often seems such a reluctant partner in the War.