21 Taliban killed after army bases attacked in Waziristan
Jet planes bombed Taliban leader Baitullah Mehsud's positions on Monday and killed 21 Taliban after Taliban launched attacks on three military bases in North and South Waziristan with mortars, rockets and gunfire, military sources said. The fighter jets pounded the Tiarza, Saleyrogha and Sararogha areas, hitting two houses in Saleyrogha and killing 21 Taliban, the sources told Daily Times.
It sounds like the lads and lass of the Pakistani air force are enjoying themselves, however effective (or not) the ground troops may be.
The bombings come as the military prepares for a decisive large-scale offensive against the Taliban leader. Chief military spokesman Athar Abbas said 14 Taliban were killed during an operation in Malakand. Abbas added that Operation Rah-e-Rast in Swat and surrounding areas had entered into its final phase. Also on Monday, Qari Hussain, a close aide of Mehsud, telephoned AP to say the military strikes had not weakened the Taliban in South Waziristan.
Definitely not weakened. Just fewer cadres and cannon fodder, and possibly fewer at the management level. The training cycle is blown to hell -- the Human Resources wallahs are seriously peeved. But weakened? Perish the thought!
Separately, four Taliban were killed and six injured when helicopter gunships and long-range artillery targeted them and their local facilitators' positions in Bajaur Agency.
Posted by: Fred 2009-06-23