2008: Pakistan continues to negotiate with tribal leaders along the Afghan
border. A deal is being reached to have some tribes shut down Taliban and al
Qaeda bases. The government would pay the tribes lots of cash and goodies for
their cooperation. In the past, the tribes would take the bribes, then offer
lots for excuses as to why the terrorists were still there. The bad guys tend
to make a more convincing offer ("mess with us and we will kill you") than the
government. Many tribal chiefs refuse to even go through the motions of making
an anti-Taliban deal with the government. The basic problem is that the tribes
are mainly interested in there being no government control in the tribal areas.
In the meantime, the Pakistani army and police continue to battle pro-Taliban
tribesmen, killing 5-10 times as many as they lose (mainly to suicide or
roadside bombing attacks).
2008: Another three terrorist leaders were killed in Indian Kashmir. Over the
last four years, peace negotiations with Pakistan has reduced terrorist support
from their side of the border, and the Islamic terrorists, especially the
leadership, have been hammered. Many of the 37 districts in Kashmir have seen
their terrorist leadership wiped out. The Islamic terrorism campaign has been
going on for 19 years, and killed over 40,000 people. The Kashmiris are tired
of it, and the terrorists are running out of steam.
2008: The Maoists in India are pretty
blatant about how they finance their revolution. It's all about extorting cash
from businesses ("revolutionary taxes"), and police are having a hard time
shutting down this. The Maoists will kill businessmen who cooperate with the
police, or refuse to pay, and the police cannot protect all the potential victims.
Going after the local Maoists is manpower intensive, and the government is
raising more and more special police for the task.
2008: Pakistan announced that, after nearly a decade of development, its Hatf
VI IRBM (Intermediate Range Ballistic Missile) is ready for service. The
system, also called Shaheen II, has a range of 2,000 kilometers, can carry a
nuclear warhead, and hit any part of India. At least a dozen of these missiles
are being built, and moved around on mobile transporter/launchers. The Hatf VI
will be a major part of Pakistan's nuclear deterrent against Indian invasion.
2008: Pakistan is not likely to get the new JF-17 fighters from China, because
of a patent dispute between Russia (which owns the tech) and China (which
shamelessly steals it). The first two aircraft had arrived last Summer.
Production is supposed to increase to 25 a year over the next three years.
Pakistan has agreed to buy at least 150 aircraft, and possibly as many as 250.
Over the next two years, most of the manufacturing (60 percent of the airframe
and 80 per cent avionics) was supposed to shift from China to Pakistan. The
first fifty aircraft will have Chinese avionics (much of it stolen Russian
tech), but the rest will use equipment from Pakistan and Europe. The biggest problem is that the JF17 (also
known as FC-1 and Super 7) uses a Russian engine, the RD93.
2008: A group of Taliban attacked the Afghan side of a border crossing. Afghan
troops pursued the attackers into Pakistan, and killed ten of them, as well as one Pakistani border guard
that got caught in the cross fire.