AQ would be free to ignore the Pashtun/US peace- but they would do it at their peril. The Pashtuns know where they are. I think CVC would have understood it as the indirect approach aimed at the real center of mass. AQ survives on the hospitality of the Pashtuns. If they act to remove that hospitality they get flushed out and we nail them. If they don't, we don't get attacked- home land secure= victory.