Afghanistan: Spring Offensive Stumbles and Falls


April 24,2007: Everyone is still waiting for the Taliban Spring Offensive to start, but nothing is happening. Well, that's not true, a lot is happening throughout southern Afghanistan. NATO and Afghan troops are all over the place, killing dozens of Taliban at a time and arresting hundreds. The Afghan army believes they have at least two hundred Taliban surrounded in a mountain village, along with a senior Afghan leader (Mullah Dadullah). On the down side, if its only Afghan troops involved, Mullah Abdullah has the financial resources to bribe his way out.

The Taliban insist they are on a roll, and threaten attacks all over Afghanistan. But so far, the Taliban have used mostly terror attacks with suicide bombers and roadside bombs. These are the weapons of someone who is losing. The increased terror attacks on Afghan civilians are another indicator of Taliban distress. More of the rural Afghans have turned against the Taliban. That, coupled with battles between al Qaeda and Taliban forces back in Pakistan, do not translate into good news for the Islamic radicals trying to regain control of Afghanistan.

April 21, 2007: The Taliban have given France one week to withdraw their 1,100 troops, otherwise, two kidnapped French aid workers would be killed. France is hoping the kidnappers can be persuaded to take a large ransom instead. Large amounts of money are the solution for most problems in Afghanistan.

April 20, 2007: Afghan border guards exchanged fire with Pakistani troops across the border. There were no injuries, and the incident appears related to the fence that is being put up on the Pakistani side. Afghans are opposed to the fence. Meanwhile, a American smart bomb killed Gul Haqparast, a terrorist leader who had long worked with Islamic radical Hekmatyar Gulbuddin.

April 19, 2007: The Taliban strategy of concentrating their attacks and media efforts on Canadian troops may be paying off. The Taliban believe that if they can give the political opposition in Canada enough support (in the form of dead and wounded Canadian soldiers and rumors of Canadian troops committing atrocities), they can get the Canadian troops withdrawn. Canadian media and opposition politicians are responding as the Taliban hoped they would.

April 18, 2007: In operations near the Iranian border, troops captured over a hundred fake police uniforms, which the Taliban have been using to terrorize civilians (and blame it on the police.)


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