RealNews

U.S. Troops Gear Up for Bin Laden

Determined to capture or kill Osama bin Laden after two years of fruitless searching, U.S. troops are mustering for a spring offensive along Afghanistan’s border with Pakistan, Defense Department and other officials said Wednesday. The new operation comes as the Bush administration debates whether to press Pakistan harder to allow the U.S. to take the fight into its territory. Defense officials said the offensive, first reported by the Chicago Tribune, would resemble military operations launched in spring 2003 and 2002 to capture or kill Taliban and Al Qaeda fighters leaving winter bivouacs. The terrorist leader and some of his top aides are believed to be operating out of Pakistan’s Waziristan area or nearby in the mountainous border region between the two nations with the assistance or protection of tribal leaders in areas that are essentially off-limits to Pakistani law enforcement officials. That poses a dilemma for the administration: how to press the hunt for Bin Laden and Al Qaeda without putting Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf, a key ally in the “war on terror,” at further risk. Full Story

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