I’ll believe it when I see it.

PESHAWAR, Feb 19 2013 (IPS) - Taliban militants have been losing grip over the handling of their would-be suicide bombers. Of late they failed to carry out their missions as planned.

The anti-militancy offensives against the Taliban coupled with the killing of many experts who trained would-be suicide bombers have meant that many would-be bombers are stuck with shabby devices and are therefore unable to carry out other acts of terror, experts say.

The botched attack on a base at the Bacha Khan International Airport in Peshawar Dec. 15 is a glaring example. “The vehicle in which five terrorists were traveling exploded far from the security installations and personnel. The plan was for the militants to enter the airport in a suicide attack,” Brigadier Khalid Shah told IPS.

Reports said that the following day, five others on a suicide mission were killed in nearby Pawaka village. They were held up all night and had no contact with their handlers. The place they were sent to was unfamiliar to them because their handlers couldn’t reach them in the face of tight security.

“They had been sent by Tehreek Taliban Pakistan to the airbase in Peshawar,” said Shah, who fought against the Taliban in Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) until his retirement in March 2012.

Security expert Major (retired) Shehrayar Khan says the killing of Taliban’s explosives expert Badr Mansoor and trainer of suicide bombers Qari Hussain Mehsud and others has had a tangible impact on the Taliban’s capacity to handle explosives and to train and equip suicide bombers.