RealNews

For 2 Ex-Generals, a Common Language

Since Sept. 11, 2001, Secretary of State Colin L. Powell has talked on the phone at least 81 times with President Pervez Musharraf of Pakistan, often when the United States is demanding something. There are times when the two men slip into “general to general” mode. One such exchange, State Department officials said, occurred in mid-2002, when India and Pakistan were massing troops and engaging in alarming “chatter” about resorting to nuclear weapons. According to those officials, Mr. Powell phoned Mr. Musharraf but addressed him not as the secretary of state to a president but as one former general to another. “All this talk about nukes, you know, it’s unthinkable,” Mr. Powell told Mr. Musharraf, according to the officials. “I know that,” Mr. Musharraf was said to have replied. Full Story

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