2 Bombings Rock Peshawar: Karzai Inaugurated

Two bombs rocked the northern Pakistani city of Peshawar on Thursday. The first, in the morning, targeted the city’s courthouse. The suicide bomber, wearing a vest, was stopped by security before he could get into the building. He detonated his payload outside, killing 20 persons and wounding 50.

Thursday evening another bomber struck at a police vehicle, killing two policemen and wounding five civilians.

Aljazeera English explains ‘why Peshawar’?

Analysts on GEO television Friday morning were saying that the Pakistani military is reluctant to take on the Mahsud tribe (the dominant one in South Waziristan) because they still view it as an asset. They also say that the Pakistani military is nervous about having diverted troops and resources to the North-West Frontier and away from the border with India. Islamabad fears that India will take advantage of this vulnerability. (Oh, yeah, like Manmohan Singh is going to roll tanks on Lahore. I mean, really.)

This was the first I had heard about a reluctance to take on the Mahsud, from which several important leaders of the Tehrik-i Taliban Pakistan (Movement of Pakistani Taliban) sprang.

Meanwhile, in Afghanistan, Hamid Karzai was sworn in for a second term as president, and he and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton appear to have made up, according to WaPo. Just like that.

A bombing near a city of southern Afghanistan targeted but missed a police convoy, but killed 10 others.

Tom Englehardt imagines the speech he wishes Barack Obama would give on Afghanistan.

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  1. link to angryarab.blogspot.com

    November 20, 2009

    Puppet Karzai dared to make a (small) deal of civilian casualties in Afghanistan

    "Karzai's first indication that his relationship with the United States would undergo a profound shift occurred 10 days before Obama's inauguration. Vice President-elect Joseph R. Biden Jr. had come to the palace for dinner, and halfway through the meal, he began taking his host to task for how he was responding to civilian casualties caused by U.S. and NATO military operations. Biden told Karzai that he was politicizing the issue and leveling 'ill-founded' allegations in public, according to a previously undisclosed account of the dinner from a person who attended. Karzai argued back, and the discussion turned tense. 'Biden got a little bit passionate about it,' the participant said. 'Karzai was taken aback, and he got a little bit passionate, too.' " *

    * link to washingtonpost.com

    — As'ad AbuKhalil

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