House arrest? Wow, way to crack down. They must be really mad.
Extraditing him would show serious cooperation. Killing him would show practicality – in an Indian prison, LeT’s long history of working with the Pakistani government in Kashmir is going to come out – but still show some amount of course correction. But telling the guy he can’t leave his house for a little while?
This moment, by the way, is why Pakistan protects Osama so carefully, and why we will never catch him until we accept offending them. If Osama were dead and gone, we would not be trying to hunt for terrorists in western Pakistan (there would still be terrorists, we just wouldn’t be looking for them). If we were not looking for Osama, we wouldn’t really care whether Pakistan’s army was on its eastern or western frontier. If we didn’t care where Pakistan deployed its army, there would be no one to object to India mobilizing its forces along the Line of Control/Radcliffe Line. As the significantly larger force, India could always mobilize and wait, forcing Pakistan to either mobilize in return, exhausting its economy, or stand down and risk India picking off Pakistani Kashmir or whatever else it wanted…
Our government seems to miss the nuance that Pakistan wants the religious nutters, because they provide a force multiplier in Kashmir and keep us petrified that the Pakistani government will fall and they will rule the show. At some point, then, we need to ask ourselves what we would do if Al Qaeda had a state. Because it does.