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Pakistani troops took the main town in strategically important Buner Valley on Wednesday after dropping by helicopter behind Taliban lines, killing more than 50 militants in two days, the military said.
A U.S. drone meanwhile fired a missile into another region, the major al Qaeda sanctuary of South Waziristan, killing six militants in the latest such attack by U.S. forces in Pakistan’s border areas with Afghanistan.
The Taliban’s advance earlier this month into Buner, just 100 km northwest of the capital had sent shivers through Pakistan and heightened fears in the United States that the nuclear-armed Muslim state was becoming more unstable.
“We assure the nation that armed forces have the capability to ward off any kind of threat,” military spokesman Major-General Athar Abbas told a news conference in Rawalpindi, the garrison town close to the capital, Islamabad.
We got the same assurances – via military-to-military contacts – from President Obama, tonight, in his prime time press conference.
Pakistan had used jet fighters at the start of the operation on Tuesday then deployed helicopter gunships which inflicted more than 50 casualties, Abbas said. One soldier was killed.
The Islamabad government’s demonstration of military resolve will probably reassure U.S. President Barack Obama and Afghan President Hamid Karzai when they meet Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari in Washington on May 6-7 to discuss strategy.
RTFA. Lots of detail – even though the article serves as a catch-all while everyone tries to figure out  what is actually going on in Pakistan, especially the Tribal areas – and  has the Pakistan government gotten to where it has a coherent strategy to continue the process of building a strong and democratic state?