There is some anger being reported that a British soldier was killed during the raid in northern Afghanistan to rescue Stephen Farrell of the New York Times. I think this is a red herring. Farrell was being held by Taliban, and I am sure the British military doesn't need an excuse to whack Taliban. In military terms, Farrell's nervy decision to go into an very active Taliban area may have made him the equivalent of a tethered goat -- that is, an unwitting probe.
Thomas E. Ricks covered the U.S. military for the Washington Post from 2000 through 2008.