Richard Holbrooke, U.S. Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan discusses the Afghan War, the floods in Pakistan, ISI and Kayani on Charlie Rose Show.

Holbrooke says Pakistan Army Chief Gen. Ashfaq Pervez Kayani is a powerful political factor in his country. Kayani was in Bangladesh during the 1971 war, Holbrooke added.

“He (Kayani) is an enormously powerful political factor in the country. And we have extensive discussions with him,” Holbrooke told the popular Charlie Rose Show in the Aug 12 interview.

“General Kayani, first of all, he’s a very powerful person and a very important factor in the equation,” he says. “He was head of the ISI. He also went to Fort Leavenworth Command and Control College and is proud to say he is a member of the Fort Leavenworth Hall of Fame (in Kansas). Among general officers I’ve known, he’s a remarkable strategic thinker. He’s very smart,” Holbrooke said in response to a question.

Holbrooke, as Obama Administration’s point man for Afghanistan and Pakistan and civilian counterpart of Gen Patreus of Centcom, also talked about the floods.


Holbrooke said the flood is an economic catastrophe, a political catastrophe and “it has huge implications for us.”

According to him there are five groups fighting US, Nato and the rest. Two are from Pakistan – the Pakistani Taliban and the LeT (Lashkar-e-Toiba). Holbrooke alludes to Haqqani group supporting the al Qaeda and harboring bin Laden.