And now this

Pakistan Says Military Offensive in Bajaur Kills 700 Militants By Paul Tighe and Khaleeq Ahmed Sept. 18 (Bloomberg) – Pakistan’s security forces killed more than 700 militants since starting an offensive in the Bajaur tribal region bordering Afghanistan about six weeks ago, the military said. Security personnel, backed by fighter jets and helicopters, have attacked hideouts in districts including Loe Sam, Tang Khata and Bai Cheena, the official Associated Press of Pakistan reported, citing unidentified military officials. At least 19 gunmen were killed in a battle yesterday, Major Murad Khan, a military spokesman, said by telephone from the capital, Islamabad. The militants' headquarters and fortified positions around Loe Sam have been engaged with artillery and helicopter attacks,'' he said. Pakistan has rejected criticism by the U.S. and NATO that it is failing to control pro-Taliban and al-Qaeda fighters using bases in border areas to carry out attacks inside Afghanistan. Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani's government objects to the U.S. firing missiles and staging raids into its territory against terrorist camps. More than 150 gunmen were killed in clashes in Bajaur in the past few days, Khan said yesterday. The fighting has forced an estimated 250,000 people from their homes, APP reported. Respect Sovereignty The U.S. will respect Pakistan's sovereignty, Admiral Michael G. Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said during a meeting in Islamabad yesterday with Gilani, according to a statement issued by the U.S. Embassy. U.S.-Pakistani cooperation will be developed on issues that challenge the security and wellbeing of the people of both countries,’’ the embassy cited Mullen as saying. Mullen said he is working more closely with the Pakistani military to improve coordination and effectiveness in operations against extremist safe havens in the border region,'' the American Forces Press Service reported. They recognize the threat they face internally to Pakistan and are improving their counterinsurgency capabilities,’’ said Mullen, who didn’t specifically refer to cross-border raids. The admiral also met with Pakistan’s army chief, General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, during the two-day visit. Pakistan’s military said two days ago army units were ordered to stop cross-border raids by U.S. troops and forces led by the North Atlantic Treaty Organization based in Afghanistan, saying they caused civilian deaths during recent incursions. At least six people were killed yesterday when a drone aircraft, suspected of being controlled by U.S. forces, fired missiles in the South Waziristan border region, Pakistan’s Dawn News reported, without saying where it obtained the information. Gilani condemned the incident, APP said. Pakistan will protect its territorial integrity, Gilani said two days ago, adding that Pakistani security forces are fully capable of handling security.

Just like the financial markets, we need a timely self-correction in the system - such as a non-nuke world war to “clear the air.” Note: this was a joke.