IT is interesting to note that the report about fears expressed by Admiral Michael Mullen, Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, that any future attack on American soil would be masterminded by Al-Qaeda leadership based in the FATA, appears in the press just a couple of days after the Rand Corporation, a leading US think-tank that is funded by the Pentagon, had talked of Pakistani intelligence agents helping the Taliban across the border in their fight against the NATO-led forces. The connection between the two views cannot be lost on even an ordinary observer of the US strategy in the War On Terror in Afghanistan. As Pakistani agents are supporting the Taliban in Afghanistan they cannot but also be in league with those elements, which are hostile to the US and are based in the tribal region of their own country, that is, Al-Qaeda that Admiral Mullen fears is planning an attack on the US. Conclusion: Islamabad cannot be entirely absolved from the blame of being a party to the crime of terrorism against the US. There is, therefore, full justification for the US airplanes to strike targets of suspected militants located in the Pakistani tribal region. Just a step further and the NATO forces can join Afghan troops in crossing the border into Pakistan in an attempt to set up a checkpost there and on resistance can fire a missile targeting Pakistani paramilitary forces stationed in the area. This is what happened on Wednesday morning. We have, as a result, 10 of our security personnel and eight civilians dead, nine wounded and a number missing in the Mohmand tribal region when a missile coming from Afghanistan hit our checkpost. Our army has justly condemned it as an act of aggression that "hit at the very basis of cooperation" in the War on Terror. It was "completely unprovoked and cowardly act". The superpower could not possibly listen to the protesting cries of 'interference' when raised by Islamabad. The US strategy of keeping a firm hold on Afghanistan (have top administration officials not voiced the US intention to stay put in the country for years to come?) with an eye to the energy-resource-rich Central Asia does not permit peace accords either. Perhaps the Americans understand (much more than the Pakistani people think they do) that trying to keep Pushtuns in tribal areas quiet does not have much chance of success if they are constantly being provoked by the brutal killings of their co-tribals in Afghanistan. But the US does not follow the logic that that provocation has to end before militants could be made to calm down. The sooner it does so, and vacates its aggression the better for its security from the threat Admiral Mullen fears and for peace in the region.