November 14, 2005:
So far this year, Taliban violence has killed some 1,500 people. The damage is being done by a few hundred Taliban killers, who operate in small groups. Afghan and American forces are constantly searching for these groups, which hide out in remote villages between raids. The Taliban use terror and persuasion to keep locals quiet about where the Taliban groups are hiding. Even so, many of the Taliban death squads have to establish bases with pro-Taliban Pushtun tribes in Pakistan. The majority of the Pushtun tribes are in Pakistan, but those in Afghanistan comprise about 40 percent of the Afghan population. The Taliban terrorists are a very small portion of the Pushtun population, but they are willing to kill, and know how to issue press releases.
November 11, 2005: A terrorist suicide car bomber made an unsuccessful attack on the Interior Minister. The attacker survived, but lost his arms and legs. In southern Afghanistan, Taliban gunmen ambushed a police convoy on the Kabul-Kandahar road, killing seven policemen and kidnapping two others. Taliban have also made attacks on civilians, trying to terrorize people into not working for the government. Meanwhile, Afghan and American troops raid suspected Taliban hideouts and make arrests. It's a big game of hide, seek and shoot. In the south, gunmen killed a deputy governor, who was involved in bringing pro-Taliban leaders into the government. In the same area, a police station was also attacked, and partially destroyed.
November 10, 2005: Two former Taliban commanders were shot to death just across the border in Pakistan. No one knows the motives for these attacks. In southern Afghanistan, four Taliban gunmen were cornered and killed.
November 9, 2005: For the last few years, there has been a building boom in Kabul, and now, the first five star (luxury) hotel has opened in the city. This is a big deal, at least for the wealthy visitors coming to explore investment opportunities in the country. The hotel is in a new building, and has an extensive security system.
November 8, 2005: Canadian troops (about a thousand of them) have moved from Kabul to Kandahar, which is the largest city in the most pro-Taliban part of the country. Over the next three months, Canada will increase its troops strength in Kandahar to 2,000.