March 18, 2009Afghanistanal-qaedaBalochistanForeign AffairsPakistanQuettaTaliban

A pre-announced surprise drone attack

Quetta in the crosshairs

This is an archived blog post from The Acorn.

If you have a dim view of the US government, then you could conclude that allowing the New York Times to announce that the CIA intends to conduct drone strikes against Mullah Omar & Co at their sanctuaries in Quetta is the Obama administration’s very own Tora Bora (via The Washington Independent). How better to surprise the Taliban leadership than by letting it be known that they will be attacked next.

But if you think that the New York Times doesn’t leak such sensitive information without purpose, then you might conclude that this is a little warning to the folks holed out in Quetta, and their friends in Rawalpindi and Islamabad, that unless they quickly become moderate’ Taliban then, well, the US might be compelled to destroy some real estate developments in and around Quetta. And what does moderate’ mean? No, not those who award 10 lashes instead of 100 for women showing their ankles. Rather, those who are amenable to negotiate a cessation of hostilities with the United States.

Is the threat credible? Well, unless you belong to the dim view camp, the good folks in Washington probably think so. Or they think that just getting the Quetta Shura to scatter is a good day’s work.

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Drezner’s question
My op-ed in Mint: Who wants to be good Taliban?

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