From NBC's Andrea Mitchell
ISLAMABAD, Pakistan -- Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was welcomed to Pakistan by a car bomb explosion in Peshawar -- as well as word of the latest terror attacks in Afghanistan.
Just as Clinton was embarking on a trip to emphasize that the U.S. was not only focused on security and terror -- but also wanted a broader relationship with Pakistan -- the terror attacks brought home the brutal reality of Pakistan's dilemma: Under pressure from the U.S., the government has launched its long delayed attack against insurgents in tribal areas. But the extremists have responded with a spate of attacks, undermining the legitimacy of the government and angering Pakistanis frustrated by the lack of security.
At a news conference today with Pakistan's foreign minister, Clinton said that she wanted to turn the page on the U.S. relationship with Pakistan and build on mutual respect and shared responsibilities. "While we may disagree from time to time as friends and partners do" Clinton said, she vowed to do more thru people to people diplomacy.
Clinton also announced a major U.S. program to help Pakistan deal with country-wide electricity shortages.
Asked about today's attacks, and what he would say to Pakistanis who say "Is it worth it?"
the foreign minister said, "We will not buckle. We will fight you. We will fight you because we want peace and security in Pakistan. You are on the run and you know that."
Clinton said that the U.S. has lost a number of brave American soldiers in Afghanistan in recent months. She added, "As the foreign minister said, this is a fight that can not be avoided. These attacks on innocent people are cowardly. If the people behind these attacks are so sure of their political beliefs, let them join the political process... They know they are on the losing side of history, but they are determined to take as many people with them as their movement is exposed for the nihilistic and empty effort that it is."
She said she commends the government of Pakistan for taking on this fight, but that while she is here she wants to try to correct misconceptions -- and reach out to as many people as possible.