Warfare continues to become more professional and dehumanized every day.

The purpose of Extraordinary Edition is being revisited for winter, headed into 2013. U.S. foreign policy, Central Asia and the Middle East remain key focal points. Economics and culture on your front doorstep are coming into focus here.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

For perspective in Pakistan; plus new drone strikes Wednesday night

For review, the situation in Pakistan as told with primary sources by Jeremy Scahill, and this is from February 4 of this year ...

"What we're seeing is the expansion of 'white' Special Operations Forces into Pakistan," says a former member of CENTCOM and US Special Forces with extensive experience in the Afghanistan-Pakistan theater. "As Vietnam, Somalia and the Balkans taught us, that is almost always a precursor to expanded military operations." The former CENTCOM employee spoke to The Nation on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the Pakistan operations. He characterized the US military's role with the Pakistani Frontier Corps as "training in offensive operations," but rejected the idea that at this stage these US trainers would cross the line to engage in direct combat against Taliban forces. That does not mean, he says, that US military forces are not fighting in Pakistan. "Any firefights in Pakistan would be between JSOC forces versus whoever they were chasing," he said. "I would bet my life on that."

Scahill's piece is still up at thenation.com and is well worth reading.
The Expanding US War in Pakistan
By Jeremy Scahill
February 4, 2010

JSOC stands for Joint Special Operations Command. It's "joint" because it gathers the special forces across the branches of the military.

Meanwhile the conditions on the ground have changed so radically in Pakistan, and most of the public in the United States has little knowledge of military, special forces or spy agency operations there. And as of this morning, we're back to drone strikes ...

Drone strike kills four suspected militants in Pakistan

This report from CNN's Nasir Dawar is set apart from others by the plausibility all four dead might actually be militant combatants. This ought not distract us from the core issue in all things Pakistan-related, who precisely was it who determined the U.S. military would be operating there in any capacity in the first place?

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