Many Afghans do not realize that US pastor Terry Jones, who held a Quran burning last month, heads a small church whose beliefs are not widely shared, thus fueling anti-foreigner sentiment that benefits the Taliban.
A Pakistani Taliban spokesman said the Christmas Day attack targeted the Salarzai tribe, which has allied itself with the government and formed an anti-Taliban militia.
Four militants attacked the United Nations compound in Herat, Afghanistan Saturday in the most serious incident on a UN facility since the Oct. 2009 attack on a Kabul guesthouse that killed several employees.
Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai confirmed that he's talking to the Taliban, seeking a political settlement with the group that harbored Al Qaeda prior to and just after 9/11.
Nobody has claimed responsibility for Tuesday's bomb attack on a NATO tanker waiting at the Torkham border post, which Pakistan sealed six days ago.
The Al Qaeda plot was reportedly a coordinated Mumbai-style attack on major cities in Britain, France, Germany, and possibly the United States.
The Taliban have reportedly claimed responsibility for kidnapping a British aid worker Sunday. They are demanding a prisoner exchange for Aafia Siddiqui, a Pakistani woman sentenced in New York last week for attacking US soldiers.
Nine NATO soldiers were killed in a helicopter crash Tuesday in Afghanistan. Nearly 2,100 NATO troops have died in the nine-year Afghanistan war, with 529 just this year.
Listing the Pakistani Taliban as a terrorist group lets the US expand its campaign against the organization, which said it trained the attempted Times Square bomber and has vowed more attacks in the US.
The International Assistance Mission, a Christian organization whose team of 10 aid workers were ambushed by the Taliban on Friday, said the killings would not chase it from the country.