An important Pakistani Army General was killed in a helicopter crash in the "restive South Waziristan region," near the Afghan border. Two other generals died in the same crash. The copter "crashed because of a technical fault."
"According to the BBC’s Syed Shoaib Hasan in Islamabad, the death of Maj Gen Sultan will dent morale among Pakistani troops who have already suffered heavy casualties in the region. He is the most senior Pakistani officer to be killed in military operations in the area. Hours before the crash was reported, Taleban militants based in Pakistan said they were scaling back operations against the military."
In the meantime, Secretary of Defense, Robert Gates, said in Munich that the European public needs convincing that Nato’s mission in Afghanistan is part of a wider fight against global terror.
Gates: "On a conceptual level, I believe it falls squarely within the traditional bounds of the alliance’s core purpose: to defend the security interests and values of the trans-Atlantic community. We must not - we cannot - become a two-tiered alliance of those who are willing to fight and those who are not. Such a development, with all its implications for collective security, would effectively destroy the alliance."