It’s been a long slog, but Afghanistan may at last be able to contemplate more stable government.
THE blast annihilated the back of the Humvee, leaving a smear in the desert. “Every time we venture that far out, we get hit,” says Captain Aaron Tapalman of the US Army, who is responsible for Sabari district in Afghanistan’s Khost province, near the border with Pakistan. The roadside bomb had exploded under the Afghan army vehicle, killing two soldiers and seriously wounding three.
Khost lies across infiltration routes from Pakistan’s tribal areas, but much of the insurgency is local. “Most of the villages just want to be left alone, and some of them are clearly pro-Taliban,” says First Lieutenant Eddie Fox in neighbouring Bak. His outpost is often pummelled by rocket fire. The influence of the Haqqani network—eastern Afghanistan’s leading insurgent organisation—is strong. They are said to have been behind a number of terrorist attacks in Khost and operate there as a mafia. Many local leaders are hedging their bets. “To be frank, we are afraid of both sides,” says a man in a nearby village.
A kabuli tudósítóval közösen, az Economistban.