As US Twists Arm, Pakistan Eyes Taliban Crackdown

Signs mount that attack on Taliban militants is forthcoming
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 1, 2011 7:00 AM CDT
Pakistani army soldiers take position at the military check post of Pash Ziarat, a town of North Waziristan on March 8, 2011.   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – Signs are mounting that Pakistan may soon launch an attack on the tribal region of North Waziristan, a stronghold for Afghan Taliban militants and al-Qaeda. The US is increasing pressure on Pakistan to help eradicate Afghanistan’s Taliban insurgents, with an invasion of North Waziristan being a chief goal. But some worry that Pakistan’s overstretched military won’t be able to take on the region’s large and deadly Haqqani network—which is a key US target—and may strike the Taliban first with only limited hits on Haqqani fighters.

Even so, a senior Pakistani army general told tribal leaders near North Waziristan last week that Pakistani forces are planning to attack Taliban militants in their region—a move that could strengthen the army’s presence on the border of North Waziristan. In addition, the army is shutting checkpoints across the region, which could signal that it is preparing for a military action by consolidating its positions, the Wall Street Journal reports.

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