A frightening story in the New York Times (which is already being updated in other papers). Seems the Pakistani Taliban are closing in on the capitol of Islamabad after seizing a strategic district about 70 miles from the city. Despite having only about 400 fighters, the Pakistani Army is too concerned with war with India to actually go after the Taliban holding the town. After taking over the Swat Valley, some in the Taliban movement felt emboldened to flog a young woman and move forward into other areas. But US protests about Pakistani indifference is starting to worry even the Taliban, who fear a military response might be forced by the US and Taliban opponents within the Pakistani government.
For those who forget, Pakistan has nukes. Nukes and the Taliban? Not a good mix.
Why do I have a flashback to this image? I wonder if our embassy has a heliport…]]>
Russia is upping the ante in their current standoff with NATO by threatening a backup supply route for NATO forces in use in Afghanistan, according to the London Times. The road would allows supplies to avoid the ‘bandit country’ of the Khyber pass where things have gotten a bit hairy:
The need for an alternative route was highlighted by recent attacks on Nato supply convoys, including one that destroyed 36 fuel tankers in a northwestern Pakistani border town in March. Four US helicopter engines worth $13 million (£7 million) went missing on the way from Kabul to Pakistan in April. Last week militants killed ten French soldiers on the same route 30 miles from Kabul.