Pentagon Presses for Special-Ops Raids in Pakistan

But some in administration fear political fallout will be too great
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 21, 2010 7:52 AM CST
Pentagon Presses for Special-Ops Raids in Pakistan
In this picture taken on Nov. 14, 2010 Soldiers of Pakistani militia stand guard at Pakistan-Afghanistan border post in Borki in the Kurram tribal region.   (AP Photo/Dilawar Hussain)

Frustrated US military commanders in Afghanistan are pushing for a series of Special Ops ground raids in Pakistan, sources tell the New York Times, in essence opening up a new front in the war. The raids would likely need approval from President Obama himself, and the wary administration fears political backlash in Pakistan. But the commanders see much to gain, particularly in terms of intelligence from captured militant leaders.

“We’ve never been as close as we are now to getting the go-ahead to go across,” says one American officer. So far, US operations in Pakistan have largely been relegated to the CIA’s drone attacks and clandestine “Counterterrorism Pursuit Teams,” which consist of Afghan militia fighters. Officially, these pursuit teams are only gathering intelligence, but anonymous officials say now that they have actually been attempting to capture enemy commanders. (More drone strike stories.)

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