Two Major Attacks on Pakistani Police; Obama Focuses on Al-Qaeda

Ten gunmen attacked a police training facility near Lahore on Sunday, killing 20 and wounding 150. They deployed 11 bombs and machine gun fire. Two the attackers were killed in a counter-attack. The police facility is near Wagah, the border crossing into India. Note that this site is very, very distant from the tribal regions in the northwest where the Pakistani Taliban have been attacking NATO convoys and warehouses. There was no immediate indication of the identity of these attackers.

Earlier on Sunday, militants in the northwest abducted 12 security personnel.

President Obama said on Sunday that he wanted to refocus on rooting out “al-Qaeda” in Afghanistan and Pakistan. I shouldn’t think there are more that 500 “Arab Afghans” actually based in Afghanistan, though, so I can’t understand why you would need 21,000 new combat troops to take them on. (There are probably that number or more on the Pakistan side of the border, and perhaps 8,000 foreign fighters in the Federally Admnistered Tribal Areas of Pakistan altogether– most of them Afghans, Tajiks, Uzbeks, Chechens, Uighurs, etc., not mostly Arabs.) See my posting below on Obama’s Domino Theory.

Tom Engelhardt suggests a comparison betseen the Pakistani Federal bail-out of AIG, given the open-eneded commitment to nation-building in the pledge.

Mulla Abdul Salam, the commissioner of Musa Qala District of Helmand Province in Afghanistan and a former Taliban leader, says that 95 percent of the Taliban are ready to lay down their weapons and reconcile with the Kabul government. He says that only fear of reprisals from other Talibs keeps htem in line, and that when the central government is able to provide them security, it will be able to bring them in from the cold.

In contrast, an old-time Tajik warlord who fought the Taliban, Ismail Khan, “the lion of Herat,” is opposed to negotiating with the Taliban and considers them incorrigible, according to Aljazeera English:

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