WASHINGTON - A leading American newspaper has urged President Asif Ali Zardari's government to acknowledge what it called the truth of Pakistan-based elements' involvement in the Mumbai attacks if the war on terror is to be won. "By now the evidence that the terrorist assault on Mumbai was planned and directed from Pakistan is overwhelming... Stunningly, however, Pakistan's civilian government is refusing to acknowledge the truth," The Washinton Post said in an editorial on Monday. The Post called the crackdown initiated by Pakistan following the UN Security Council's ban on Jamaat-ud-Dawa as "unconvincing," saying similar actions taken after the 2002 attack on India's Parliament could not prevent the Lashkar-e-Taiba from re-emerging under a new name. "This unconvincing sweep looks bad in the light of history: After a Lashkar-sponsored assault on India's Parliament in 2002, the government arrested many of the same people and formally banned the group. "Later the suspects were quietly released, and the organisation re-emerged under the name Jamaat-ud-Dawa," The Post said, pointing out that under heavy pressure from the Bush administration, President Zardari's democractically-elected civilian government has placed the LeT leader under a loose "house arrest" and rounded up several dozen of its militants, including the man India has identified as the chief planner of the attacks. The Post said that apologists for Zardari's civilian government point out that the president's bluster probably covers "his lack of authority to crack down on LeT or its allies in Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence agency". "If the war on terrorism is to be won, the excuses for Pakistan must end," it said. Referring to media interviews given by Zardari where he has said that there is no proof that the Mumbai attackers came from his country, the newspapaper said Pakistan must "stop denying the truth". While contending that the perpetrators of the terror attacks "no doubt" wanted to derail the peace peocess between India and Pakistan, the newspaper advocated that the incoming Obama administration should act on promises to condition aid, especially to the Pakistani military, on fundamental reforms. "The sponsors of the Mumbai attack no doubt wanted to undermine that campaign as well as steps toward peace by Pakistan and India. Yet, if the war on terrorism is to be won, the excuses for Pakistan must end," The Post said. "The first step is relatively simple: to stop denying the truth," the editorial said.