The Unz Review: An Alternative Media Selection
A Collection of Interesting, Important, and Controversial Perspectives Largely Excluded from the American Mainstream Media
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Taliban

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taliban
The Taliban in Afghanistan have published an attempt to reason with “the American people, officials of independent non-governmental organizations and the peace loving Congressmen.” This “
Our ageing Russian-built helicopter flies into the Panjshir valley from the north, high over desolate, brown hills. We land at Changaram, a narrow point in the valley where lush, green fields and terraces cling to the sides of the mountains. All along the narrow dirt road are signs of the armies that have tried to... Read More
Though an anti-war type I am not on the same page with many anti-war types when it comes to poo-pooing President Obama’s call for military action against the IS caliphate.   The caliphate is a big deal, in my opinion, a big bad transnational deal with significant consequences throughout Asia, and something should be done.  “Something”,... Read More
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The White House is pushing hard to keep a significant number of American soldiers in Afghanistan contrary to President Barack Obama’s earlier pledge to have then all out by the end of 2014. As the United States President has demonstrated himself to be a habitual liar that failure to connect promises made in 2008 with... Read More
The piece reproduced below originally appeared at Asia Times Online on November 12, 2012 under the title
Spin masters from Washington to Brussels to Kabul are bound for many a sleepless night. World public opinion has been relentlessly shocked and awed by the chimera that the United States and North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) are "winning" the AfPak combo war. Now for the facts on the ground. Immediately after the US government... Read More
Ten years ago, Taliban Afghanistan - Talibanistan - was under a social, cultural, political and economic nightmare. Ten years ago, New York-based photographer Jason Florio and myself slowly crossed Talibanistan. Those were the days. Bill Clinton was in the White House. Osama bin Laden was a discreet guest of Mullah Omar, and there was no... Read More
Ten years ago, Taliban Afghanistan - Talibanistan - was under a social, cultural, political and economic nightmare. Ten years ago, New York-based photographer Jason Florio and myself slowly crossed Talibanistan overland from east to west, from the Pakistani border at Landi Kotal to the Iranian border at Islam qillah. Those were the days. Bill Clinton... Read More
Dear reader: let's sit back, relax, and take a trip down memory lane to prehistoric times - the pre-9/11, pre-YouTube, pre-Facebook world. Ten years ago, Taliban Afghanistan - Talibanistan - was under a social, cultural, political and economic nightmare. Arguably, not much has changed. Or has it? Ten years ago, New York-based photographer Jason Florio... Read More
All trivial matters have been set aside to pursue the biggest story in Chinese media. As People's Daily Online put it: Afghanistan's Taliban insurgents are training monkeys to use weapons to attack American troops, according to a recent report by a British-based media agency. Reporters from the media agency spotted and took photos of a... Read More
The bombing of the Data Darbar shrine--tomb of the Sufi master Datta Ganj Bahksh--in Lahore, the capital of Pakistan's Punjab province, is a big deal. It's like setting off a bomb in St. Patrick's Cathedral. Data Durban is at the core of Punjabi cultural identity. When Nawaz Sharif returned to Pakistan from exile in Saudi... Read More
In Pakistan, the intersection of religion, ethnicity, and politics is often marked by murder. The tense interaction between the Deoband adherents of the Pashtun North West Frontier Province and the Barelvi confession of the Punjab heartland has already been marred by violence. The Awami National Party’s mishandling of an Islamic calendrical controversy provides an unsettling... Read More
Apocalypse Now. Run for cover. The turbans are coming. This is the state of
Informed analysis of Pakistan has exploded in a whirlwind of conflicting narratives following the announcement of the deal on sharia law—the Nizam-e Adl Regulation or NAR-- in Swat and the apparent burgeoning of Taliban-centric religious extremism in western Pakistan. The United States policy sphere reacted with a hysterical, “barbarians at the gate (or 100 miles... Read More
In commemoration of Earth Day, and in response to a
...and the MQM Draws the Line in Karachi
Pakistan’s divided democracy, representing 170 million people, seems incapable of dealing with the collection of obscurantist theocrats and well-armed bumpkin bullies who make up the Pakistani Taliban. On April 13 . Pakistan’s national assembly voted to ratify “Nizam-e Adl Regulation of 2009”, or NAR: the imposition of shariah law on the valley of Swat in... Read More
For those wondering where United States Vice President Joe Biden bides his - vast - spare time, he has just spent quite an eventful Tuesday both at the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the European Union (EU) headquarters in Brussels. Biden's message to Europeans in panic with the financial crisis (but reluctant to bail... Read More
The Taliban's War on Popular Sufism--and Pakistan
Via All Things Pakistan comes the
China Matters has pieces up at Asia Times and Counterpunch under the pen name “Peter Lee”. The Asia Times piece,
Is America Taking on the Neo-Taliban and Missing the Point?
Why is Afghanistan at the nexus of a regional crisis that threatens the security of the United States and the very existence of Pakistan? Because Afghanistan is awash with money, arms, and foreigners. The Obama administration should think twice before assuming that injecting more money, arms, and foreigners into Afghanistan is going to solve the... Read More
It seems the story of Wei Longxiao and Zhang Guo, two Chinese telecom engineers kidnapped by the Taliban in Pakistan’s Swat valley on August 29 of last year, has everything (
To my mind, there is no more important journalistic source on the Taliban in Pakistan than Syed Saleem Shahzad, South Asia correspondent for the Asia Times. Shahzad recently posted on a four-part report,