Suicide attacks a response to Predator strikes: Pakistani Taliban


Scores of children trained to become suicide bombers at a camp run by Qair Hussain Mehsud in Spinkai, South Waziristan, prior to its destruction in January 2008. Image courtesy of AfPax Insider.

The Movement of the Taliban in Pakistan today claimed it carried out the recent suicide attack on a police station in Lakki Marwat that killed 19 people, including two children and nine policemen. Its spokesman, Azam Tariq, said the Taliban were carrying out the attacks to avenge deaths in US Predator strikes in the tribal areas, and said the group would continue to hit Pakistani security forces. From AFP:

“We are targeting Pakistani security forces because the government has allowed America to launch drone attacks on us,” Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) spokesman Azam Tariq told AFP by telephone.

“Rather it is on the Pakistan government’s behest that drone attacks target us,” he said.

“We will continue suicide attacks on security forces. Civilians should avoid proximity with them.” …”We carried out the Lakki Marwat suicide attack,” Tariq said, adding that the Taliban “regretted” the killing of schoolchildren in the attack.

“Our children are also killed in drone attacks,” he said.

The last comment is curious, given that the Taliban often use children to carry out suicide attacks. Qari Hussain Mehsud, the Taliban’s top trainer of suicide bombers, runs camps for child suicide bombers. Boys as young as 12 have been recruited and trained to carry out attacks.

Bill Roggio is a Senior Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and the Editor of FDD's Long War Journal.

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  • blert says:

    At some point Islamabad is going to have to pull troops away from the Indian front to shore up their West.
    Rather like the Israelis, Pakistan is going to have to erect formal barriers and establish check points.
    There is NO WAY that the Taliban forces are going to mellow.
    Pakistan is in a smoldering civil war which no one wants to admit.
    Fundamentally the Baluchis and Pashtuns have NO prospect of ever getting the big chair in Islamabad.
    Each in their own way is trying to break free. All of the talk about strategic depth on the part of the Pak Army really refers to hanging on to Baluchistan and preventing a Baluchis-Indian Axis.
    In retrospect, Pakistan should never have been formed. Founded in paranoia, she is forever crippled by it.
    Now that she has atomics, it is hard to understand Pakistan’s need for a massive conventional force to stare-down India.
    Until Islamabad resolves the big paranoia, there is no hope of AfPak resolution either.
    Perhaps the best way forward is to de-fund the Pak Army. The stronger it gets, the more paranoid their policy. Each expansion elevates more players who must justify their perch. Just like an expanding police force that forever finds more crime — the expanding Pak Army finds more ‘threat.’

  • Charu says:

    The last comment becomes clear when you consider that the Taliban use other people’s children to commit homicide bombings. The drone attacks OTOH kill their own families.
    Pakistan’s military establishment is either going to quit riding two horses at the same time and eliminate the Islamic fundamentalists that they spawned, or soon fall to the Islamists in their midst. There is no half-way measure possible for them anymore. The choice is clear. If they continue to dream about strategic depth after the US withdraws, it will turn out to be strategic depth for al Qaeda and not for Pakistan.

  • jelle says:

    what are they fighting for? why there is a rebel, a terrorist? what is wrong? why there is war? is it hard to forgive? hatred in our heart makes the demon happy


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