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U.S. military wants answers from Pakistan

When we interviewed Mahmud Ali Durrani, Pakistan's ambassador to the United States, nothing seemed to agitate him more than accusations that his country wasn't properly accounting for the more than $10 billion in U.S. money it has received since 9/11.

Today, the Los Angeles Times reports, the Pentagon is considering requiring Pakistan to provide "detailed accounting" for this money and may even tie payments to the Pakistani military's performance against militants. (The idea that the Pentagon is getting into the business of lecturing anyone on accounting is a subject for another day.)

As you'll be able to tell from the video below, this isn't going to go over well in Islamabad. Durrani told FP that Pakistan views most of this money as payment for services rendered as part of Operation Enduring Freedom. As he colorfully put it, "If we take that money and go and buy bananas, how does it bother you?"

Check it out:

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Morning Brief, Monday, November 19

Asia

JOHN MOORE/Getty Images

The United States is looking to recruit tribes in the frontier region of Pakistan to fight al Qaeda and the Taliban. 

Pakistan's new Supreme Court is proving to be just what the general ordered. Roughly 90 percent of the country's lawyers, however, are against Musharraf. And today, the opposition boycotted a meeting to discuss procedures for the upcoming elections.

Nearly 3,000 people are now feared dead from Cyclone Sidr in Bangladesh. 

Cambodian authorities have detained a former top leader of the Khmer Rouge.

Middle East

Attacks against U.S. and Iraqi forces in Iraq have fallen to their lowest level since February, 2006.

Regarding the upcoming peace conference in Annapolis, MD, "No one seems to know what is happening," an Arab diplomat told the Post's Glenn Kessler.

As a confidence-building measure, Israel will release some 450 Palestinian prisoners.

Europe

Several European countries are privately warning Kosovo not to declare independence after Saturday's elections.

Italy's former PM Silvio Berlusconi is plotting his political comeback.

The recording of King Juan Carlos telling Hugo Chávez to "shut up" has become a popular ring tone in Spain. 

Elsewhere

OPEC is looking into the impact of a falling U.S. dollar. "They get our oil and give us a worthless piece of paper," Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad complained at the OPEC meeting in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

Meet Brazil, South America's newest energy powerhouse

Some in South Sudan are bracing themselves for war.

Today's Agenda

  • U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson is in Ghana.
  • New York hosts the International Emmy Awards despite the ongoing writers' strike.
  • U.S. and North Korean officials are meeting in New York.

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