The small but deadly special forces have proven themselves in battle, and their numbers are growing.

The country's fast-improving security situation made it possible, say observers.

Battlefield successes have increased public confidence in the government and projected a more positive image of the country to the world at large.

Enhanced security measures have taken effect at cattle markets, trade centres and places of worship across the country.

Keeping continuous control of the valley is vital in restricting militants' cross-border movements, say observers.

More than 1,300 suspected militants have been arrested in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in the past few years.

The games aim to show that Pakistan's tribal belt is no longer a safe haven for terrorists and are a sign of better times to come.

Border security is the key to discouraging terrorism on both sides of the Pakistan-Afghanistan border, analysts say.

Pakistani security forces cleared the Brekh Muhammad Kandao mountaintop sooner than planned, boding well for the rest of the operation, analysts say.

Displays of patriotism tell terrorists that the people have become stronger and are more united than ever, observers say.