"We have seen the Pakistani government and military really step up, which had not happened to the extent it has now. So the Taliban, which is, as I believe strongly, part of a kind of terrorist syndicate with the Al-Qaeda [ Images ] at the centre, is now under tremendous pressure," Clinton told the NBC news channel in an interview.
The Secretary of State said strategic review concludes that Al-Qaeda is supported by and uses its extremist allies like elements within the Taliban and other violent extremist groups in the region as well as worldwide, to extend its reach; to be proxies for a lot of its attacks on Jakarta, Indonesia and elsewhere.
"So that in order to really go after the Al-Qaeda, to uproot it and destroy it, we had to take on those who were giving the al-Qaeda leadership safe haven," Clinton said, adding "the border between Afghanistan and Pakistan is permeable. There are movements back and forth across it."
"This is a new strategy. It's just beginning. I think the president believes that it was not only the right strategy but facing what he faced to withdraw our presence or to keep it on the low-level, limited effectiveness that had been demonstrated, would have sent a message to Al-Qaeda and their allies that the US was willing to leave the field to them," she said.