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Old 09-06-2007   #21
davidbfpo
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http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main...akistan106.xml

Pakistan army helicopter kills militants

A Pakistan army helicopter has attacked a vehicle carrying suspected pro-Taliban tribesmen as uncertainty grew over the fate of over 100 Pakistani soldiers captured by militants in the tribal areas. Officials said four militants and two passers-by were killed in the strike near the town of Mir Ali in North Waziristan, notorious as a safe haven for militants, including Arabs and Central Asians.(more on the link about background).
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Old 09-06-2007   #22
Sarajevo071
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Quote:
Originally Posted by davidbfpo View Post
Thanks to Sarajevo for the source material.

I fear the worst with these incidents, either the Pakistani Army will go neutral - which means doing even less than before. Or it will be assertive, even launching operations. Even the most Islamic soldier, or officer should not accept the beheading of a FC para-military. Yes, I say this from the comfort of my "armchair" and rely on my reading of Imperial history.

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You are welcome. I thought it is important development.

I agree with you on above observations on beheadings. I honestly never understand people like that... Seams to me that things will boil over soon and some kind of conflict will start. I am looking at this through they political crisis and imminent end of Musharraf's dictatorship.
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Old 09-08-2007   #23
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Default No News

I have been following this one too but scanning for updates I am drawing a blank. The story has gone cold nothing on The Dawn, BBC, Reuters etc. - at least that I found - anyone got an update?

P.S. For those interested in the flux in Pakistani politics and its ramifications for Afghanistan see
Generals Waiting in the wings: http://www.dawn.com/2007/09/07/top4.htm and
Humour - Pakistan-style: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/6984262.stm

Last edited by JJackson; 09-08-2007 at 04:05 PM.
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Old 09-11-2007   #24
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Default Taliban Release Captured Pakistani Soldiers (probably)

Ok I seem to have now found something.
Quote:
Pro-Taliban fighters have freed more than 260 Pakistani troops who were kidnapped nearly two weeks ago in the tribal region on the border with Afghanistan.

A local intelligence official said the soldiers were handed over to members of a jirga, or tribal council on Monday.
http://english.aljazeera.net/NR/exer...91E72CD7B4.htm
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Old 09-11-2007   #25
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Default Release deal fails?

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default...1-9-2007_pg7_1

Army hostage release deal fails - from Pakistani paper.

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(added more general items on Pakistan elsewhere)
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Old 09-12-2007   #26
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Asia Policy, Jul 07: Militant Recruitment in Pakistan: A New Look at the Militancy-Madrasah Connection
Quote:
• With respect to intelligence collection and analysis, asking whether or not madaris produce militants is the wrong question. Querying the educational and other characteristics of key tanzeem (militant group) operatives, while keeping in mind the impacts of group efforts to select for desired skills and capabilities, will inform counterterrorism efforts more effectively.

• A number of implications are pertinent to U.S. policy toward Pakistan and the threat posed by Pakistan-based terrorism to U.S. interests:

- The U.S. can act unilaterally against known militant madaris only at great cost to other objectives (e.g., Musharraf ’s safety); Pakistan will cooperate in this regard only with varying degrees of commitment, limited capability, and diminished respect for rule of law and human rights.

- Pakistan’s entire education system requires comprehensive reform; such reform may be beyond Pakistan’s capability and there may be only limited scope for the United States to help. Increased participation by multinational organizations and demand for accountability by all partners are required to complete this daunting task. The costs of failure are too high to countenance.

- Because efforts to restrict the supply of terrorism have rapidly diminishing margins of return, interventions to reduce demand for terrorism are needed.

- Madaris merit continual observation as they may contribute both to the demand for terrorism and to the limited supply of militants. For the same reasons, Pakistan’s public school sector deserves much more attention than it currently enjoys.
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Old 09-17-2007   #27
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Default More bloodshed

On the BBC News website Pakistani troops clash with militants and the militants execute sixteen captured soldiers, for full story:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/south_asia/6999329.stm

This happened last Thursday.

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Old 09-21-2007   #28
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Release of 100 soldiers likely today
Troops vacate two South Waziristan posts, to withdraw from third today

Quote:
The Pakistan Army pulled out from two of the three posts in the restive South Waziristan Agency after days of negotiations with the tribal militants, thus, paving the way for the release of around 300 security personnel held captive by the militants, a tribal Jirga disclosed on Tuesday.

All the three posts are located in the Mahsud-inhabited tribal territory. According to the Jirga sources, after vacating the two strategic posts, the tribal militants led by Commander Baitullah Mahsud would fulfill their commitment on phased release of the held soldiers. In the first phase, the militants were to release around 100 soldiers either on Tuesday night or today (Wednesday).

When contacted on phone, Director General Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) Maj Gen Waheed Arshad told The News that troops were not deployed at the two posts mentioned by the Jirga members. He, however, said that from one of those posts, the forces were relocated which often takes place in the region according to requirements.
...
http://www.leemedia.net/links.php?ur...l.asp?Id=10191
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Old 09-21-2007   #29
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Seven more FC men kidnapped in Tall

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Seven more Frontier Constabulary (FC) personnel were kidnapped by the militants after an attack on their check post in Tall near Mir Ali late on Tuesday night, while a held FC soldier was killed and three others fled to Bannu on Wednesday.

The check post is six kilometres from the FC fort on the Hangu-Waziristan road near the Tall town. The abducted personnel include Havaldar Piao Khan, Sepoy Safeerullah, Aqeel, Raza Khan, Noor Jehan and Noor Khan. The identity of the 7th soldier could not be ascertained.
...

In South Waziristan, a Jirga negotiating the release of around 300 security personnel refused to accept 10 detainees against the 100 agreed upon earlier and returned to Wana empty-handed.

The militants had agreed to release one-third of the captive security personnel in talks with the Jirga earlier after the Army pulled out of two security posts in the Mahsud areas. The Jirga, headed by a pro-MMA MNA, Maulana Merajuddin Qureshi, went to Mulla Khan Serai near Barwand in Tiarza subdivision on Wednesday morning for decisive talks with the militants but was disappointed when they found the militants led by Baitullah Mahsud missing from the meeting.
...
http://thenews.jang.com.pk/top_story...l.asp?Id=10216
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Old 10-09-2007   #30
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Default Battle, airstrikes kill 250 in Pakistan

Battle, airstrikes kill 250 in Pakistan - Washington Post, 9 Oct.

Quote:
Fierce fighting between Islamic militants and security forces near the Afghan border has killed as many as 250 people over four days. The battles marked some of the deadliest clashes on Pakistani soil since it threw its support behind the U.S.-led war on terrorism in 2001, the army said Tuesday.

Airstrikes hit a village bazaar in North Waziristan tribal region on Tuesday afternoon, killing more than 50 militants and civilians and wounding scores more, said resident Noor Hassan. "The bombing destroyed many shops and homes," Hassan said by telephone from the village of Epi. "We are leaving."

...

The fighting began Saturday after a roadside bomb hit a truckload of paramilitary troops, sparking bitter clashes. The bodies of dozens of soldiers, many with their throats slit, have been recovered from deserted areas of the region, fleeing residents said.

The violence comes as Gen. Pervez Musharraf tries to secure another term as president, vowing to shore up Pakistan's troubled effort against Islamic extremism.

The army appeared to be resorting to heavy firepower. Pakistani troops have suffered mounting losses as they try to reassert state authority in a swath of mountainous territory where warlords supportive of the Taliban and al-Qaida have seized control.

Before Tuesday's airstrikes, the army had reported that battles have killed 150 fighters and 45 soldiers since Saturday. About 12-15 troops are missing. Another 50 militants and 20 soldiers had been wounded.
Security forces have rejected a cease-fire proposed by the militants and will "continue punitive action till complete peace is restored" in the area, an army statement said ...
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Old 10-09-2007   #31
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Default Stop & Go resumes

The Pakistani "stop & go" policy at work and timed to coincide with the re-election of President Musharraf I'd say. Will the action continue? Watch and wait.

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Old 10-10-2007   #32
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Default Pakistan overview

An interesting review article on Pakistan, with references to aspects I've missed:

http://www.realclearpolitics.com/art...nightmare.html

Not read of the journalist before.

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Old 10-11-2007   #33
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Default Pakistan rebels display hostages

Pakistan rebels display hostages

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/7039101.stm
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Old 11-08-2007   #34
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The Long War Journal, 7 Nov 07: Taliban Continue March Under Musharraf's State of Emergency
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President Pervez Musharraf's state of emergency five days ago has done little to curb the Taliban's march in the Northwest Frontier Province. As the security forces continue to arrest opposition leader and work to curb protests in the major cities, The Taliban have taken control of two more major towns in the settled district of Swat, while attacks continue elsewhere in the Northwest Frontier Province.

On November 6, the Taliban overran police stations in and around the town of Matta in Swat.....
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Old 11-08-2007   #35
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Default Watch & Wait - updated

This link to Bill Roggio's article should be delivered to all decision-makers on policy towards Pakistan.

The prisoner exchange is amazing, especially the timing with a state of emergency, although not a suprise.

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Old 11-09-2007   #36
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Default The Red Button and Mullah Omar's Finger

With Bhutto under house arrest and refugees fleeing the Swat valley, some of whom are demanding action from the Boss, it looks like a green light to finally settle some old scores - we sure don't want the taliban near the nukes. I do note there is no call for Bhutto to solve the Taliban/fundamentalist problem which leaves some observors believing she would be willing to share lots of power with them, assuming she was ever allowed to be in such a position.
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Old 11-10-2007   #37
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Default Keep in mind

... Musharraf is the inheritor of the power base built by Zia, (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muhammad_Zia-ul-Haq) who used the Islamists and catered to them to gain and keep power and developed the Taliban with money from the CIA (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taliban#Origin) (Also: Charlie Wilson's War). They were high up in Musharraf's administration, he had to can some right after 9-11. Bhutto is the inheritor of the electoral base that her late father had which is centrists and secularist middle class. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Benazir_Bhutto

The Islamists can be relied on to do everything possible to kill Bhutto because Pakistan is the last real chance the Taliban/Al Qaeda ("Shade of the Koran" is the inspiration for bin Laden and other radicals http://www.youngmuslims.ca/online_li...sir/syed_qutb/) have to get power. If she shares power with Musharraf (which her dedicated supporters are enraged by) that gives Musharraf a way to survive and make use of a political base that can go after the Islamists. (Or at least keep them in check.) They don't like this idea at all.

This link discusses that power sharing deal from an Islamist point of view. It makes clear that Musharraf is losing his grip on power because he is going after the Islamists. (http://quranbible.wordpress.com/2007...-sharing-deal/)

( My general observation, militants make better allies than pacifist middle class who just want a nice life.)
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Old 11-10-2007   #38
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200 security personnel surrender to militants in Pakistan

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Two hundred paramilitary personnel have surrendered to pro-Taliban militants in the troubled Swat valley, in a major embarrassment to Pakistan government which has been pushed on the backfoot in its operation to root out extremists from the northwestern tribal areas.

The 200 men of the Frontier Corps surrendered to militants led by radical cleric Maulana Fazlullah on Thursday night after their camp in the Matta area was surrounded by the extremists who are demanding imposition of strict islamic law or Shariat and have strengthened their hold on the region by driving out most security forces.
...

The rebels control six tehsils or sub-districts or almost 80 per cent of the scenic Swat valley, till recently a popular tourist destination.
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/W...ow/2530410.cms
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Old 11-17-2007   #39
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The Jamestown Foundation's Terrorism Focus, 13 Nov 07:

Pakistan Loses Swat to Local Taliban
Quote:
In recent weeks large swathes of Pakistan’s idyllic mountainous region of Swat—a mere 90 miles from Islamabad—have fallen to militants purportedly led by Maulana Fazlullah, whose Tehreek-e-Nafaz-e-Shari’at-e-Mohammad (Movement for the Enforcement of Islamic Laws, or TNSM) shaheen (fighters) may number as many as 4,500. Swat’s residents are fleeing to safer ground as the security forces, largely comprised of the poorly trained and under-equipped Frontier Corps, are no match for Fazlullah and his following of belligerents. With Swat and other areas increasingly in the hands of militants, Pakistanis must rise to the challenge of combating an ideology that is fast encroaching into more settled areas.....

.... On November 3, President Pervez Musharraf declared martial law, ostensibly to help fight terrorism. While lawyers, opposition party members, and human rights activists were arrested, Musharraf’s government released more than two dozen Islamists from jail. Reportedly, among those released was Mullah Obaidullah Akhund—the highest ranking Taliban official captured by Pakistani forces. Obaidullah was arrested in February 2007, coincident with U.S. Vice President Cheney’s visit to Pakistan to protest Pakistani insouciance towards the Taliban. In exchange for releasing these important Taliban operatives, Pakistani Taliban leader Baitullah Mehsud agreed to release the last of the 211 surviving troops taken hostage in Waziristan in late August. With the under-equipped and ill-prepared security forces already demoralized by a war that pits them against their fellow countrymen and in many cases against co-ethnics and fellow tribesmen, Musharraf’s actions are not likely to foster confidence and morale amongst his military. Yet this is exactly what is needed if Pakistani forces are to rally to the cause of tackling the Taliban.

Last edited by Jedburgh; 11-17-2007 at 01:34 PM.
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Old 01-18-2008   #40
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The Long War Journal, 17 Jan 08: Pakistani Troops Abandon Second Fort in South Waziristan
Quote:
......The attack on the Sararogha fort, the capture of a company of Pakistani troops in South Waziristan in September 2007, and the Taliban opposition to a Pakistani military incursion in South Waziristan highlight the Taliban's ability to stand up to the Pakistani military in a conventional fight. The rise of the Taliban in the Northwest Frontier Province and the tribal areas during 2006 and 2007 and the subsequent peace deals in North and South Waziristan, Mohmand, and Swat have given the Taliban and al Qaeda the time and space to organize along military lines and stand toe-to-toe with the Pakistani military. Coupled with the intense suicide campaign that has been ongoing since late 2006 and the strikes focusing on secure military bases housing nuclear weapons, the Taliban and al Qaeda are vying for control of the Pakistani state.
Edit to add related article from the Jamestown Foundation's Terrorism Focus, 22 Jan 08:

Pakistan’s Frontier Corps Struggles to Hold Forts against Taliban Attacks
Quote:
On the night of January 15, the Sararogha Fort manned by Pakistan’s paramilitary Frontier Corps fell to Islamic militants in a remote part of the South Waziristan tribal region bordering Afghanistan. It was the first time in the 60-year history of the country that a military fort was lost to a non-state group and had most of its defenders killed or captured.

This was the second embarrassing defeat in recent months for Pakistan’s armed forces in South Waziristan, where military operations were launched in early 2004 to hunt down militants suspected of links with al-Qaeda and the Taliban. On August 30 last year, some 300 besieged Pakistan Army soldiers surrendered without firing a shot to the same group of tribal militants led by Pakistani Taliban military commander Baitullah Mehsud. They were held hostage for more than two months and were exchanged on November 4 for 25 of Mehsud’s men as a result of mediation by the 21-member jirga (council) of tribal elders and clerics belonging to the Mehsud Pashtun tribe.....

Last edited by Jedburgh; 01-23-2008 at 02:01 PM.
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