Bomb's Away

The Taliban is already breaking its part of the peace deal brokered with Pakistan in the Swat Valley:

Other steps reportedly agreed to in the Swat Valley on Wednesday include banning “obscene” films, taking “stern action” against drug dealers and cracking down on corruption.

The deal has sparked fears among some analysts that conceding this much authority to extremists will only expand their power, risking further national instability and making it more difficult for the central government to exert its authority.

“I’m not surprised,” said I. A. Rahman, head of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan, a civic group.

“They’ve given them a yard and now they’re taking 2 kilometers.”

Under the original deal, the Taliban was supposed to impose what StrategyPage called “Sharia lite.” Instead? About what you’d expect, plus no end to blowing stuff up.

Think the President will have much luck engaging in some of those “tough, direct” negotiations with the “moderate radicals” he swears he can find over there?

It’s also worth noting that Pakistan signed a peace treaty — ie, a contract with a foreign power — concerning its own “sovereign” territory. Which is actually a good thing for us, believe it or not. One thing Obama has gotten dead right is the need to bomb (or — shh! — even pursue) terrorists and Taliban in Pakistan’s North-West Frontier Province. What he got wrong is: you do these things, but you sure as hell don’t talk about them. Not when doing so makes a shaky ally look even weaker.

But now that Pakistan has given up the pretense that they govern the NWFP, we can, too.