US unlikely to consider across-the-board change in policy with Pak

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Washington, May 6 (ANI): The arrest of a Pakistani American for his role in the botched Times Square car bombing plot will not stop the United States from continuing to follow its flawed policy vis-'-vis Pakistan.

According to one analysis, Washington is unlikely to press for an across the board clampdown on terrorists so long as it continues to exaggerate its own dependence on Pakistan to the exclusion of others in the region.

In the analytical piece, what comes out is that unless the US suffers another major attack, it is likely to look the other way, or at best give lip service to the terrorism threat emanating from South Asia.

The analysis, however, warns that it would be dangerous to admit and to conclude that "lone wolf" threats are over.

"It is better to assume that there are more such lone wolves lurking around somewhere. The man (Shahzad) was apprehended at the last minute, very much in the style of movies and in fortuitous circumstances. Had he booked himself on an earlier flight, he might have escaped," the analysis says.

"The fear of a successful attempt the next time is real. Should such an attack be successful the next time, American reaction would have to be in the extreme," it adds.

US intelligence agencies have their work cut out.

Did Shahzad have someone backing him or not? With US intelligence and law enforcement agencies being clueless on this score, the implication is that there are enough 'converts' to jihad in the US and West that it would make the authorities start looking hard.

There are many unanswered questions and more will emerge as the investigations continue, the analysis says, and adds that there will be two immediate reactions in the US.

There will be increased general suspicion or even racial tension against Pakistanis or persons of Pakistani origin, and secondly,

The authorities are also likely to become stricter in their scrutiny of people going and coming from Pakistan. There will be stricter immigration and migration checks.

Third, publicly there will be more questions asked of the Obama administration about the wisdom of co-operating with a government (Pakistan) whose people were now threatening innocent Americans.

The author of the analysis believes that US policies towards Pakistan won't see much change.

"There will be the usual remonstrations and finger wagging, but ultimately the Pakistanis will declare helplessness owing to the bloody mindedness of the Indians. Pakistan will use this opportunity to press even more strongly on their key India specific demands (Kashmir and now water, reducing Indian presence and role in Afghanistan, getting a Pak friendly or anti-Indian leadership in Kabul, nuclear, delivery of more weapons ostensibly for CI ops). The US will continue to push for effective Pak Army action in North Waziristan, heightened intelligence co-operation and role for CIA, increased drone strikes and so on," he concludes. (ANI)

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