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More bloodshed for Afghanistan

So the Taliban announced the beginning of a new operation codenamed al-Fatah, which is the Arabic word for victory. In their statement, they detail who will be a target and how they will be targeted.

Last modified: 9 May 2010 11:12
Photo by AFP

So the Taliban announced the beginning of a new operation codenamed al-Fat'h, which is the Arabic word for "victory".

In their statement, they detail who will be a target and how they will be targeted.

Top of the list - of course - are foreign troops, security contractors and Afghans working for them who are considered "the ears and eyes of the foreigners".

Second target of choice: Afghans working for the government, security forces, intelligence services and justice ministry. The Taliban is urging these Afghans to leave their jobs, but don't suggest how they are supposed to earn a living.

Political timing

The new operation is to start May 10 - the day Hamid Karzai, Afghanistan's president, arrives in Washington for a four day visit.

Politically, the timing of the Taliban's announcement makes sense. They want to make sure their message is heard loud and clear.

Otherwise the new operation is pretty much like the old operation Ebrat, which means "lesson".

This while the US, the Afghan government and NATO are giving conflicting signals of the way forward for the country. After announcing for months a large scale operation in Kandahar, they now seem to be backing down from that plan.

The bottom line of it all, though, is that there will be more bloodshed in Afghanistan for months to come.