The blogosphere knows through reporters like Michael Yon that the US operations in Baqubah are trapping al Qaeda fighters driven out of Baghdad. The locals are only too willing to help:

A positive indicator on the 19th and the 20th is that most local people apparently are happy that al Qaeda is being trapped and killed. Civilians are pointing out IEDs and enemy fighters, so that’s not working so well for al Qaeda. Clearly, I cannot do a census, but that says something about the locals.

The surge has just started and is already showing results. Harry Reid and company are in the unfortunate position of hoping for failure. If the surge succeeds in greatly reducing the ability of al Qaeda and the Mahdi army to terrorize Iraq, then Harry “the war is lost” Reid is going to look very stupid.

Meanwhile, back on the Pakistan-Afghanistan border, US forces may be making life unpleasant and short for foreign terrorists operating there. A J Strata reports on s successful strike on a terrorist camp in Pakistan:

Major Update: Many of the dead have been identified as Arabs and terrorists:

The terrorists who have been killed in blast in Datakhel area near the Afghan border in abandoned area of Miramshah have been identified.

Military sources while talking to Online confirmed that explosion in the suspected religious seminary in Datakhel area near the Afghan border on Wednesday claimed 33 lives out of which 27 persons including four injured have been identified as foreigners.

Military sources further confirmed that out of 23 deceased, 19 have been identified as Arab, while four belonged to Turkmenistan.

Similarly, four injured have also been identified as Arab. Now the area has been under strict security after the deployment of military personnel.

Stay tuned! Seems to have been a success.

There is speculation that the strike was carried out using a new weapon system deadly accurate from 300km.

The system, called High Mobility Artillery Rockets, or HIMARS is reportedly a complement to Predator drones, particularly when weather prevents the high-altitude strikes, and are the new favorite when significant firepower is desired. The truck-mounted artillery rocket system (hence the “high mobility” moniker) first entered service in June 2005 at Fort Bragg, N.C., to complement the venerable MLRS rocket, which is heavier and more constrained in its movements and flexibility.

HIMARS carries a single six-pack of rockets on a standard Army 6×6 all-wheel drive (MLRS carries 18 rockets). The six-pack can be configured to shoot a wide array of rockets and missiles, from cluster bombs to a single missile system with a range up to 300 kilometers. HIMARS can fire a variety of non-cluster bomb rockets from the standard MLRS range of 32 kilometers to 300 kilometers.

The HIMARS launcher can also aim at a target in just 16 seconds. A crew of three operates the launcher, and it is possible for the crew to select preprogrammed targets stored in a fire control computer to increase flexibility.

With HIMARS, the United States certainly has the ability to fire deep into Pakistan from Afghanistan, and with GPS-aided precision, the missiles have a greater ability to hit the target (with the MLRS, accuracy is to within about 1,000 feet). There have also been reports of laser-guided rockets and missiles available on HIMARS, further improving accuracy.

The US now has the means to respond quickly enough to kill Bin Ladin when someone rats him out. Please, let it be before the Democrats surrender to al Qaeda in January 2009.

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