Taliban mass murder of civilians backfires in Pakistan


A series of militant bomb attacks in Pakistan aims to undermine the country's resolve to fight the Taliban but is likely only to strengthen determination to defeat the militants, analysts say.

Pakistan has undertaken its most concerted effort to roll back an expanding Taliban insurgency that has raised fears for the important U.S. ally's stability, and for the safety of its nuclear weapons.

The army late last month went into action against Taliban who had seized a district only 100 km (60 miles) from the capital after the United States criticized a peace pact as tantamount to abdicating to the militants.

This month, the military launched a full-scale offensive to root out the Taliban from their stronghold in nearby Swat.

But the militants have responded with eight bomb attacks in towns and cities since late April, three on Thursday in the northwest, a day after 24 people were killed in a suicide gun and bomb attack in the eastern city of Lahore.

The militants are trying to undermine the state's determination to fight them, and the broad public support the army's campaign enjoys, analysts told Reuters on Friday.

"This is exactly what the militants are trying to do because they have done it successfully in the past. But things have changed substantially," security analyst Ikram Sehgal said.

"I don't think it will undermine the resolve of either the public or the government. They realize that this sort of thing will only escalate if they vacillate any further," he said.


The Taliban dominate an area through corporal punishment and intimidation. When they try the mass murder for Allah campaign in a broader context it is stiffening the resolve of the people and the government and showing why they should not be allowed to succeed.


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