US Drone Strike Kills Pakistani Taliban Chief’s Wife

Four Killed, Several Children Wounded in Attack

by Jason Ditz, August 05, 2009

A US drone strike in South Waziristan’s remote Zanghra village killed at least four people today, including one of the wives of Tehreek-e Taliban Pakistan (TTP) chief Baitullah Mehsud. The attack, on his father-in-law Ikram-ud din Mehsud’s home, also wounded five others, including four children.

Neither the TTP chief Baitullah, or his father in law, were in the home at the time. Though the exact details of the strike are not available, as the Mehsud tribe controlled village is difficult to reach, it does not appear that any of those killed in the strike were high ranking militants.

Such attacks are par for the course, for while the Obama Administration has amassed a significant body count with its escalated drone strikes in Waziristan, few militant leaders of any note have been killed, and the scores of civilians killed as collateral damage in the strikes are creating both a strong anti-US sentiment in the region and growing resentment at the Pakistani government for failing to stop the attacks.

Baitullah Mehsud has claimed credit for a growing number of terrorist attacks across Pakistan, which he says are retaliation for the US strikes. He has also threatened to launch an attack in Washington, and his determination for revenge against the US will no doubt grow with the killing of his wife.

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