October 24, 2007

Pakistan Poised To Swat Taliban

The Pakistani Army has deployed 2500 troops to the Swat region specificially to engage a Taliban leader and his followers. Maulana Fazlullah conducts radio broadcasts from the Swat valley to organize resistance to the Pakistani government on behalf of the Taliban in an area that had been a popular tourist region until the rise of "militancy":

"The deployment may cause inconvenience to local population, but it is necessary to restore law and order in Swat," the caretaker Chief Minister of North West Frontier Province (NWFP), Shamsul Mulk, told the BBC.

The army says that the soldiers deployed on Tuesday were setting up checkpoints across Swat, a valley popular with tourists until an upsurge of violence earlier this year.

It says that it wants to curb the activities of militant leader Maulana Fazlullah, who reportedly has used radio broadcasts to call for jihad, or holy war, against the Pakistani authorities.

Maj Gen Waheed Arshad said that the checkpoints are "to ensure that Fazlullah and his band of criminals stop terrorising innocent civilians".

The day before, terrorists attacked a military convoy in the southern end of the Swat valley using a remote-controlled bomb. The Army claims that this deployment had already been planned before that attack.

The new deployment will not make the locals happy. They had protested earlier deployments to Swat, and given the hard-line talk from Pervez Musharraf, this will make them even more nervous. The local elders have already protested to Mulk about this deployment.

Musharraf appears to be playing a little bit of chess in the North West Frontier Province, as well as in Waziristan. He has begun arranging his pieces for strategic advantage while holding his fire. Will he eventually attack?


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Comments (5)

Posted by NavyspyII | October 24, 2007 7:29 AM

He may not actually attack, but just place his troops, and wait to be attacked. That would give him the "Absolute Moral Authority" required, perhaps.

Posted by hunter | October 24, 2007 7:43 AM

Crushing the Taliban by their former sponsors has a good ring to it.

Posted by Keemo | October 24, 2007 7:46 AM

Pervez Musharraf must take serious actions against AQ/Taliban strongholds following the recent civilian deaths at the hands of suicide bombers. Clean house or be killed from within.

I wish Pervez Musharraf much success for many reasons; nuclear weapons in the hands of AQ/Taliban is on the top of my list.

Posted by eaglewings | October 24, 2007 8:02 AM

Here's hoping that Pres Musharref becomes the Sultan of Swat.

Posted by Muhammad Rome | October 28, 2007 9:58 AM

I belong to Swat.I wan to say a few words about the prevailing situation in Swat.
The militant rise in Swat is the outcome of external and internal factors;
internally,the social discrimination,lack of social justice,economic discripencies,this beautifill and fascinating place of earth always lacked a development policy in all sectors since its merger with Pakistan in 1969.
Externally,the agencies wanted human boms for Afghanistan to fight soviet troops which was produced by pakistani agencies generously from the pkhtoon belt of Pakistan.So talibanization reached to every home.
Secondly, Swat has a very strategic importance.Afghanistan,china,adjesent to india and central Asia.Some analyst the that the new game would be played on this part of the earth.

What may be the reason we are passing through a difficult time.we are not the part of any game.we are peaceful.we want peace.we want cherish peace.the people of swat are more educated than the rest of the province.Histirically we are very accomodative.
Understand us what we are.They are just a handful of people.The master minds are not Swaties.I say this with great certainity that people of swat are not that much brutal.Forgin fighters are inovlved.
Thank you all.

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