posted on: Thursday March 18, 2010
Arman Oganisian ’13 / World Staff
Pakistan has been a long standing ally of the United States in the war on terror. In the past decade, the nation has suffered countless suicide attacks in major cities such as Peshawar. According to The New York Times, on Mar. 12 the Pakistani Army made a decisive strike against the area of Makeen. Makeen is a terrorist hot-spot. The New York Times reports that insurgents, headed by Baitullah Mehsud, have used the area to attack Pakistani cities and military installments with a “ferocious onslaught of suicide bombings and commando raids.” In response, the Pakistani Army launched an attack from their base in the foothills of the South Waziristan mountains. They began artillery attacks that destroyed houses and schools which, according to The New York Times, were used by Mehsud to hide large amounts of heavy weapons. The Pakistani army has made great progress with the offensive. The attack on Makeen has taken “the war to the Taliban…rather than retreating behind successive peace deals as it once did,” reports The New York Times.The fighting itself is strange to the Pakistani Army. The nuclear-armed military is trained for conventional warfare. Therefore, it has been forced to adapt to the current conflict in “strange ways,” reports The New York Times. This was evident in a village just north of Makeen, where a Pakistani officer trained in mountain climbing scaled a 7,000 foot cliff with 15 men. This put them at a strategic position above 300 insurgents upon whom they fired.