Taliban Surges Back With New Battle Plan
These are not your father's theocrats
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 20, 2008 3:46 PM CDT
Face covered Taliban militants pose before they execute two Afghan women in Ghazni province, Afghanistan, on Saturday, July 12, 2008.    (AP Photo/Rahmatullah Naikzad)
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(Newser) – Today’s Taliban bears little resemblance to the incompetent barefoot mullahs the US ousted 7 years ago. In the past year, the Taliban has reinvented itself as a confident, well-armed militia with a mighty propaganda machine, the Washington Post reports. “This is not the Taliban of Emirate times,” said one aide from the old regime. “They are more educated, and they don't punish people for having CDs or cassettes.”

The new Taliban is focused on a single goal: Driving foreigners from Afghanistan. As people have lost hope in Hamid Karzai’s regime, the Taliban built a parallel government, with councils for finance and defense, and an efficient justice system. It’s also shed scruples, willing to break Islamic laws against murdering women and trafficking poppy. “These people claim to be Muslims,” said one police chief, “but they are nothing more than terrorists.”