Al-Qaeda is a Major Challenge for the United States, Says Ryan Crocker

American Ambassador Ryan Crocker
Washington: The United States has stated that combating the al-Qaeda in Pakistan is as crucial to the America as pertaining conditions with the terrorist network in Iraq.

Ryan Crocker, former American Ambassador to Pakistan said, “I could say a few things based on my two and half years in Pakistan, and that is the presence of al-Qaeda in the Pakistan and Afghanistan border area is a major challenge to us.”

Crocker, the Bush government's top ambassador in Baghdad, told legislative assembly in the Senate Foreign Relations Committee during an intensive and extensive session on the current course in Iraq.

Crocker was asked for his opinions on whether the US is offering enough resources to tackle the danger posed by al-Qaeda in the Islamic Magreb.

Democratic Senator Russ Feingold of Wisconsin asked Crocker "How concerned are you about al-Qaeda's safe haven in Pakistan?" to which the administration's top diplomat in Iraq replied "... we're all quite concerned."

"Which is more important to defeating al-Qaeda, the situation in Afghanistan or that situation in Iraq, Ambassador?" asked a persistent Senator Feingold.

"The challenges in confronting al-Qaeda in the Pak-Afghan border area are immense, and they're complicated. I did not feel, from my perspective as ambassador to Pakistan, that the focus, the resources, the people needed to deal with that situation, weren't available or weren't there because of Iraq," Crocker answered.

" my view, fighting al-Qaeda is what's important; whatever front they're on. Fighting al-Qaeda in Pakistan is critically important to us, fighting al-Qaeda in Iraq is critically important to us," Ambassador Crocker added.