Tuesday, January 3, 2012

"For God's sake, forget all your differences and give us fighters to boost the battle against America in Afghanistan"

Not exactly a "Uncle Sam Wants You" recruiting slogan, but as my long-time motorcycle racing/riding buddy used to say, "Run what ya brung"  We shall see if this call to arms results in any greater threat, or if the line around the tent is just for hummus and a lamb shank.

From The Miami Herald January 3 by Ishtiaq Mahsud and Sebastian Abbot
Al-Qaida, Taliban seek Pakistani militants' help

DERA ISMAIL KHAN, Pakistan -- Prominent al-Qaida and Afghan Taliban fighters asked Pakistani militants in a pair of rare meetings to set aside their differences and step up support for the battle against U.S.-led forces in Afghanistan, militant commanders said Monday.

The meetings were held in Pakistan's tribal region in November and December at the request of the Afghan Taliban's leadership council. They could indicate the militants are struggling in Afghanistan, or conversely, that they want to make sure they hit U.S. forces hard as the Americans accelerate their withdrawal this year. That could give the Taliban additional leverage in any peace negotiations.

"For God's sake, forget all your differences and give us fighters to boost the battle against America in Afghanistan," senior al-Qaida commander Abu Yahya al-Libi told Pakistani fighters at a meeting on Dec. 11, according to a militant who attended. Pakistani militants have long been split over where they should focus their fighting. The Pakistani Taliban have concentrated on toppling their own government, although they have sent some fighters to Afghanistan. Other Pakistani groups based in the tribal region have almost exclusively directed their attacks against foreign forces in Afghanistan.

The Pakistani Taliban, an umbrella organization set up in 2007 to represent roughly 40 insurgent groups, has also been split by infighting over turf and leadership positions after commanders were killed by the Pakistani military and U.S. drone strikes.

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