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FROM THIS EPISODE

Pakistan's army is finally taking on the Taliban in South Waziristan. Will the much-delayed offensive help the US and NATO against the Taliban in Afghanistan? Is Pakistan more interested in its historic conflict with India? Also, President Hamid Karzai is forced into a run-off election in Afghanistan, and US Attorney General Eric Holder will defer to state laws on medical marijuana. 

Banner image: A Pakistani policeman checks a vehicle carrying an internally displaced Pakistani family, fleeing from military operations against Taliban militants in South Waziristan on October 20, 2009. Photo: Aamir Qureshi/AFP/Getty Images


Producers:
Sonya Geis
Christian Bordal
Frances Anderton

Making News Karzai Forced into Run-off Election 7 MIN, 31 SEC

After reports of widespread fraud in Afghanistan's recent election, President Hamid Karzai has agreed to a run-off to be held in less than three weeks. By Karzai's side was Democratic Senator, and former presidential nominee John Kerry. Anand Gopal is in Kabul for the Wall Street Journal.

Guests:
Anand Gopal, New America Foundation (@anand_gopal_)

Main Topic Pakistan Fights Militants in the Mountains 33 MIN, 26 SEC

Despite fierce resistance, Pakistan's Army claims progress in its much-awaited offensive South Waziristan, where some 10,000 Taliban provide a base for al Qaeda and training for foreign jihadis. Twenty eight thousand troops are in the fourth day of their offensive, backed by jet planes, helicopters and tanks, as tens of thousands of civilians flee for their safety. In apparent response, suicide bombings continue in Pakistan's major cities, with two simultaneous strikes today at a university in Islamabad. Are the Army's Taliban targets the same ones the US and NATO are after next door in Afghanistan? What's the role of Pakistan's Cold War with India, and is this the moment for those nuclear powers to finally make peace?

Guests:
Zahid Hussain, Journalist, Wall Street Journal and London Times
Najam Sethi, Friday Times and Daily Times (@najam_sethi)
Hassan Abbas, Senior Advisor, Harvard University Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs
Karl Inderfurth, former Assistant Secretary of State for South Asian Affairs

Reporter's Notebook Feds Lighten up on Illegal Medical Marijuana Dispensaries 9 MIN, 30 SEC

Marijuana is still illegal under federal law, but US Attorney General Eric Holder has ordered agents and prosecutors not to pursue suppliers and patients in 13 states where the drug has been legalized for medicinal purposes. Holder says his permissive approach is contingent on those who deal with it complying with state law. Los Angeles County's District Attorney Steve Cooley says Holder's approach won't conflict with his plans for a major crackdown because "about 100% of dispensaries…[here]…are operating illegally." Solomon Moore is criminal justice correspondent for the New York Times.

Guests:
Solomon Moore, Criminal Justice Reporter, New York Times

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