Former CIA Official Backs Up Mullen’s Pakistan Claim

Admiral Mike Mullen.Pete Marovich/Zuma

Let our journalists help you make sense of the noise: Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter and get a recap of news that matters.


On Thursday, Admiral Mike Mullen, the outgoing Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told a Senate committee that the Pakistan’s army intelligence service, the ISI, has been working hand-in-hand with the Pakistan-based Haqqani terrorist network, one of three allied insurgent groups fighting NATO forces alongside the Taliban. But how did the US know that for sure? Reuters posits an answer:

Bruce Riedel, a former top CIA analyst with close ties to the Obama White House, which he once advised, told Reuters administration officials have told him that militants who attacked the U.S. Embassy and NATO headquarters in Kabul on September 13 phoned individuals connected with the ISI before and during the attack.

Following the attacks, Riedel said, U.S. security forces collected cell phones the attackers had used. These are expected to provide further evidence linking militants to ISI.

Mullen has linked the alleged Haqqani-ISI tag team to at least three attacks against the US. This all comes as the Senate appropriations committee voted on Wednesday (the day before Mullen levelled his allegation) to make US aid to Pakistan “more rigorous, and contingent upon its cooperation in fighting militants such as the Haqqani network.” But that’s not exactly a game-changer for this fraught relationship.

Meanwhile, Reuters says that Mullen’s “harsh words appear to represent a new low in U.S.-Pakistani relations”—yes, okay, given his prominence, maybe. But by what measure is this a new low? Apparently there’s no drone strike too outrageous, no CIA-linked midnight murder too embarrassing, no terrorist bunker too cozy, and no special ops raid too invasive, for the US or Pakistan to say: At what point is enough enough?

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate