Headline of the week: “Taliban commander turns self in… for reward on ‘Wanted’ poster”
Mohammad Ashan, a mid-level Taliban commander in Paktika province, strolled toward a police checkpoint in the district of Sar Howza with a wanted poster bearing his own face. He demanded the finder’s fee referenced on the poster: $100.
I can’t help but think that this is a fairly good argument against purchasing power parity, since I would like to believe that it would take at least a four-figure sum to elicit this behavior in an American criminal.
Seriously though, this reminds me of an old interview with the Pakistani Ambassador to the U.S. that I wrote about like a million years ago. When Jon Stewart asked Mr. Haqqani why it was so hard to prevent people from joining the Taliban, he basically said that the Taliban has the resources to take care of them financially more than the governments of Pakistan and Afghanistan can, and people are in large part responding to economic incentives:
Dear Pakistan and Afghanistan: I hear these guys can be bought off pretty cheap. You should get on that.