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Afghan security forces assist an injured man at the site of an explosion in Kabul, Afghanistan, Friday, Jan. 17, 2014. Afghan police said a suicide bomber attacked a Kabul restaurant popular with foreigners, officials.
Afghan security forces assist an injured man at the site of an explosion in Kabul, Afghanistan, Friday, Jan. 17, 2014. Afghan police said a suicide bomber attacked a Kabul restaurant popular with foreigners, officials.
(Massoud Hossaini/AP)

Could neighbourhood watch and civil resistance curb terror in Afghanistan?

Two Canadians, two Americans, two Britons, two Lebanese, a Dane, a Russian, a Pakistani, a Malaysian and eight Afghans, including a newlywed couple, died in one of Kabul’s worst terrorist attacks last Friday. Nothing can justify this horrendous act of wanton violence against a soft target, nor replace the precious lives that were snuffed out that evening at the Taverna du Liban in the Afghan capital. What is certain though is that the timing and targeting were premeditated, and that the planning was precise, sophisticated and intended to send a message to political actors at a time when Hamid Karzai’s relations with the United States are tense over the signing of a security agreement, he is insisting on peace talks with the Taliban, and the country is gearing up for critical presidential elections to be held in April.