Mr. Mehsud said in a news conference last weekend, his first since taking over from Baitullah Mehsud, who was killed in a missile attack by an American drone in August, that the Taliban would not let the planned offensive go unanswered.
The assault on the military headquarters, along with bombings last week on United Nations offices in the capital, Islamabad, and a crowded market in Peshawar, could be the start of the escalation Mr. Mehsud had warned about, military analysts said.
This is all pretty horrible and scary. At the same time, it doesn’t sound all that savvy. The Pakistani military is often seen as having mixed feelings about militant groups, but nobody has mixed feelings about militant groups that attack their own key installations. And blowing up UN food aid workers and people trying to do their shopping doesn’t exactly scream out “we’re standing up for Muslim interests vis-à-vis American imperialists.