October 31, 2005: The government says that recent police operations have destroyed thirty drug laboratories (that convert poppies to drugs), and destroyed four tons of drugs, and five tons of chemicals used in the process. Afghanistan is the source of 87 percent of the world's opium (4,000-5,000 tons a year). Taliban groups have been found cooperating with some of the drug gangs, apparently in a form of mutual defense pact. This really only works with the drug gangs run by certain Pushtun tribesmen, because most other tribes are hostile to any cooperation with the Islamic fundamentalist Taliban.
October 30, 2005: The Taliban attacked and burned down another girls school in the south. The Taliban believe that girls should not be educated.
October 29, 2005: Violence in the south continued, leaving 23 dead over the last two days. These included 14 Taliban and one American and one British soldier. Civilians in the south are complaining to police that armed Taliban are pushing their way into mosques and threatening those who cooperate with the government. In most parts of the south, the mood is anti-Taliban, who are seen as more bandits and terrorists, than rebels.
October 28, 2005: The recent elections for the national assembly have resulted in a surprisingly good showing for conservative candidates, including clerics, former mujahadeen, and even a few ex-Taliban. While this will undoubtedly give the government a more religious tone than Western sensibilities are comfortable with, it may also prove a further step in stabilizing Afghanistan and discrediting the Taliban, which has lately begun targeting clerics who support the new government; three of whom were killed within the past few days. Meanwhile, the new army continues to grow, with 26,000 troops in service, and another 4,000 in training.
October 27, 2005: Pakistan handed over, to Afghanistan, 14 Taliban that had been captured in Pakistan recently. These included two Taliban leaders. In eastern Afghanistan, Taliban gunmen killed a tribal leader, and three civilians, as part of their terror campaign (to discourage people from working with the government.)
October 26, 2005: Taliban attempted to ambush an American convoy in southern Afghanistan, but the counterattack left six Taliban dead, and several others wounded.
October 25, 2005: In the capital, an attempted RPG attack on an American went wrong, and six civilians were killed instead. Elsewhere in the capital, Islamic terrorists killed two policemen.