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February 24th, 2009
12:52 PM ET

Pakistan's extremist triumph

Ahmed Rashid
Los Angeles Times

Maulana Sufi Mohammed, a radical cleric who was freed last year after spending six years in jail for leading 10,000 Pashtun tribesmen in opposition to the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan in 2001, has begun a new campaign. He is leading a peace march through the strategic Swat Valley in an attempt to persuade his son-in-law, Maulana Qazi Fazlullah, to accept the government's offer of a cease-fire and enforcement of an Islamic system of justice in the valley.

The fact that Mohammed has embraced the government's offer is a sign of how fully Islamabad has capitulated to the demands of extremists in the region. And the fact that the peace deal has not yet been accepted by Fazlullah, who leads the Swati contingent of the Pakistani Taliban and is closely allied with Al Qaeda, is a sign of how radicalized some of the region has become.

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Filed under: 360° Radar • Pakistan
soundoff (One Response)
  1. Davis

    shouldnt put in army if he waz in jail

    February 25, 2009 at 10:38 am |