Afghan Spring

Back to the balloon metaphor. The flurry of developments in Pakistan,taken in combination, suggests a significant shift in the Taliban’sstrategic emphasis. It’s based on inherently unstable deals andalliances, and is in all likelihood seasonally motivated and thereforetemporary. But in broad strokes, it looks as follows: – Consolidating its bridgeheads in Swat and NWFP through allegedly lucrative (as in $6million in government indemnities) ceasefireagreements with the Pakistani government. – Preparing to meet the U.S.’s 17K troop escalation in Afghanistan witha spring offensive that combines up-to-now divided Taliban elements ina pact brokered by Mullah Omar. (Via John McCreary’s Night Watch.) In other […]

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