America's Hot War With Pakistan

Former Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf insists he knew nothing of Osama bin Laden's whereabouts inside his country. Let's hope he's lying. The alternative would be much worse. 

What's the Latest Development?

The role played by Pakistan's intelligence agency, the ISI, in the bombing of an American embassy in Kabul last month is only the latest demonstration of Pakistan's close ties to the Taliban and its desire to fill the power vacuum that America will inevitably leave behind it. "The Taliban for all real purposes are not an outgrowth or even a real affiliate of al Qaeda; the Taliban are an appendage of the ISI," says Steve Clemons, The Atlantic's Washington editor.  

What's the Big Idea?

Independent of its ties to the Taliban, Pakistan has launched its own offensive in Afghanistan. In other words, as the US withdraws from the region, the future of Afghanistan will be Pakistan. A report from the Middle East Media Research Institute details Pakistan's sustained campaign inside Afghan borders which includes rocket attacks, military checkpoints and the issuing of Pakistani citizenship to foreign citizens along their shared border. The U.S. can do little while it depends on Pakistan to route supplies to troops in Afghanistan. 

Related Articles

Human skeletal stem cells isolated in breakthrough discovery

It's a development that could one day lead to much better treatments for osteoporosis, joint damage, and bone fractures.

Image: Nissim Benvenisty
Surprising Science
  • Scientists have isolated skeletal stem cells in adult and fetal bones for the first time.
  • These cells could one day help treat damaged bone and cartilage.
  • The team was able to grow skeletal stem cells from cells found within liposuctioned fat.
Keep reading Show less

How exercise helps your gut bacteria

Gut bacteria play an important role in how you feel and think and how well your body fights off disease. New research shows that exercise can give your gut bacteria a boost.

National Institutes of Health
Surprising Science
  • Two studies from the University of Illinois show that gut bacteria can be changed by exercise alone.
  • Our understanding of how gut bacteria impacts our overall health is an emerging field, and this research sheds light on the many different ways exercise affects your body.
  • Exercising to improve your gut bacteria will prevent diseases and encourage brain health.
Keep reading Show less

Giving octopuses ecstasy reveals surprising link to humans

A groundbreaking new study shows that octopuses seemed to exhibit uncharacteristically social behavior when given MDMA, the psychedelic drug commonly known as ecstasy.

Image: damn_unique via Flickr
Surprising Science
  • Octopuses, like humans, have genes that seem to code for serotonin transporters.
  • Scientists gave MDMA to octopuses to see whether those genes translated into a binding site for serotonin, which regulates emotions and behavior in humans
  • Octopuses, which are typically asocial creatures, seem to get friendlier while on MDMA, suggesting humans have more in common with the strange invertebrates than previously thought
Keep reading Show less