Geography of the Afghan-Pakistan militant nexus from the BBC
Pakistan’s plan — hope? — to isolate Baitullah Mehsud has unravelled. Over the last few days two other warlords have decided to leave the sidelines and join the fight against the government in the FATA.
Hafiz Gul Bahadur in North Waziristan and Maulvi Nazir in South Waziristan have each renounced previously negotiated peace-deals with Islamabad. (Read more from the BBC.) The tribal leaders have initiated attacks on Pakistan’s military forces still massing for operations against Baitullah’s tribal heartland in South Waziristan. (Read more from LongWarJournal.)
This strategic set-back for Pakistan could, however, offer some tactical benefits to the 4th Brigade, 25th Infantry Division deployed immediately across the border from North and South Waziristan. Both Bahadur and Nazir have used their peace-deal with Pakistan to deploy more forces into Afghanistan. The leaders are reportedly calling these resources home for battle against the Pakistan army.
Read more on the new US strategy in Afghanistan from Reuters.
UPDATE: USA Today is reporting that a US soldier is missing and may have been captured in Eastern Afghanistan.