Taliban unite to fight US
The Taliban is often spoken of as one force but in reality it is several groups controlled by warlords - much like the Mafia is made up of different families.
News now comes that some of the most powerful warlords are joining forces as the US prepares to increase the number of troops deployed in Afghanistan as part of Barack Obama's 'surge plan'.
This surge against insugency will see the biggest coalition of Taliban fighters so far united under the banner of Council of United Holy Warriors.
Fears are rising that this could lead to an increase in cross-border attacks into Pakistan.
Three rival Pakistani Taliban groups have agreed to form a united front against international forces in Afghanistan in a move likely to intensify the insurgency just as thousands of extra US soldiers begin pouring into the country as part of Barack Obama's surge plan.
The Guardian has learned that three of the most powerful warlords in the region have settled their differences and come together under a grouping calling itself Shura Ittihad-ul-Mujahideen, or Council of United Holy Warriors.
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