Tag Archives: Taliban

December Debacle: Stories from the Freezer!!! November 4: Back in Kunduz

The American military was accused of slaughtering some civilians using airstrikes in Kunduz, Afghanistan. Familiar territory for us!

Related:

U.S. Bombs Hospital–UPDATE

New York Times put the civilian fatality number at either 13 or 19.

While a United States “independent” investigation found its strikes resulted in no civilian casualties and that “numerous enemy combatants were killed,” the United Nations Mission in Afghanistan found 10 civilians were killed.

Additionally, those civilians suffered their deaths while being coerced by “antigovernment elements”–members of the Taliban–to retrieve bodies from earlier fighting, according to the UN Mission’s Twitter account. This aligned with testimony an elderly villager with a head wound gave to the New York Times.

Air Force reported Afghanistan strikes nearly quadrupled to 900 in August and September of 2017, compared with “a similar period” from 2016.

Also:

The CIA is reportedly seeking authority to conduct its own drone strikes in Afghanistan, a first if approved, according to the New York Times.

Thanks to our sources:

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/nov/04/us-airstrikes-kill-civilians-kunduz-afghanistan

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-afghanistan-casualties/u-s-investigation-finds-no-afghan-civilian-casualties-in-kunduz-strike-idUSKBN1D706V

 

Taliban Updates

Two American soldiers and two American contractors were killed by a suicide bomber claimed by the Taliban yesterday inside Bagram airbase, Afghanistan.

BBC reports the base is “one of the best protected places in Afghanistan,” and this is “a major security breach.”

An additional 16 Americans and one Polish citizen were also wounded.

“Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said the attack had been planned over four months.”

The base is guarded by an outer Afghan perimeter, as well as an inner American security perimeter. Every visitor is searched.

We will update with any details.

Thanks to our source:

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-37960735

ISIS Updates

pakistan-quetta.jpg

ISIS, Pakistani Taliban Both Claim Responsibility for Hospital Bombing that Killed at Least 70; ISIS Claims Confiscation of US Military Gear; Pakistan Attacked Again

A hospital in Quetta, Pakistan was targeted by a suicide bomber on Monday, killing at least 70 and injuring at least 112.

Rather than patients, the victims were apparently “mostly lawyers and journalists,” who were gathered to transport the body of Bilal Anwar Kasi, a lawyer fatally shot earlier on Monday. (Independent of UK)

The terrorist faction responsible for the slaughter is unclear; Independent reports:

Both Isis and a faction of the Pakistani Taliban have claimed responsibility for the attack.

The Amaq news agency of Islamic State would be a particularly pernicious perpetrator, if their claim is sincere:

“A martyr from the Islamic State detonated his explosive belt at a gathering of justice ministry employees and Pakistani policemen in the city of Quetta,” Amaq said in a statement.

The Independent notes that Pakistan has been largely attacked from local militants, and the Islamic State extending the caliphate’s reign of terror would seem to be a new development.

Jamaat-ur-Ahrar is a Pakistani Taliban chapter, sworn to serve ISIS in 2014 but more recently apparently fighting for ISIS’ rival, Taliban:

“The Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan Jamaat-ur-Ahrar (TTP-JA) takes responsibility for this attack, and pledges to continue carrying out such attacks,” spokesman Ehsanullah Ehsan said in a statement.

Jamaat-ur-Ahrar was added to the US’ list of global terrorists last week, triggering sanctions against the group.

Sanctions are an important step because they eliminate American spending to fund terrorist organizations. America flooded Iran with hundreds of billions of dollars in “sanctions relief” earlier this year to sweeten the “nuclear deal,” as we have reported:

Iran’s New Partners in Terrorism

Iran is the world’s largest state sponsor of terrorism.

Quetta is the provincial capital of Baluchistan. Mr. Kasi was the president of Baluchistan Bar Association, according to the Independent.

The subsequent suicide attack appeared to target [Kasi’s] mourners, said Anwar ul Haq Kakar, a spokesman for the Baluchistan government.

“It seems it was a pre-planned attack,” he said.

*

Meanwhile, USA Today reported ISIS may have seized some American military equipment (adding to their stockpile of weaponry and gear the U.S. has placed in the hands of anti-ISIS fighters, which ended up in the hands of ISIS):

The Islamic State group is circulating photos of potentially sensitive American military equipment and identification cards purportedly confiscated by militants after recent battlefield engagements in Afghanistan.

The photos show a variety of weapons, ammunition, communications gear and accessories. Perhaps the most chilling image is a closeup of someone holding two ID cards belonging to a U.S. soldier, Spc. Ryan Jay Larson.

Henrietta Levin, a U.S. Defense Department spokeswoman:

“We are aware of erroneous reports that U.S. Army Specialist Ryan Jay Larson was captured by ISIL [sic] in Afghanistan. These reports are false. He has been accounted for and remains in a duty status within his unit. We are looking into how he lost possession of his ID but can confirm he has been accounted for with his unit.”

Levin provided no additional details about the photographs and declined to address several questions submitted by Military Times.

A White House official referred questions to the Defense Department.

Retired Marine Corps officer Fred Galvin told USA Today that the items pictured by Amaq on ISIS social media are concerning for an abandoned American military installation:

Among the items is a M72 rocket launcher and a spare barrel for an M240 machine gun. There are 40mm grenades, a hand grenade and smoke grenades, and numerous 5.56mm rifle rounds and bigger 7.62mm rounds, which are fired from M240s and sniper rifles.

There’s a ruck sack, some body armor, knee pads, eye goggles, gauze, tourniquets and other medical supplies, a multiband radio and flex cuffs used to detain bad guys. Some of the gear appears to be standard issue, Galvin said, while other items are used only by “more advanced” military units.

“From the looks of all of this,” Galvin said, “it appears (the perpetrators) may have hit a fixed position. Maybe they ran across an observation post, or a site where guys were sleeping, bedding down. You can’t tell 100%. But it does look like someone was caught in a hasty attack. If they knew they were going to be attacked like that, they would have been wearing their body armor.”

(USA Today; our emphasis)

Body armor is an essential Federal Government agency (non-Defense) item in the Homeland as well:

EPA Spends $200,000 on Body Armor to Prepare For Changing Climate

Galvin added, noting the global American military presence:

“Americans have been in Nangarhar for years. All of that equipment could have been bought in a local bazar. It’s possible this is just a deception operation. ‘Hey look. We attacked them. We destroyed them.’ It could be a complete ruse.”

*

Additionally, “ten civilians and four security officials were injured, with two in critical condition,” in a roadside bomb attack apparently targeting an Anti-Terrorism Force escort of Federal Shariat Court Justice Zahoor Shahwani in Quetta yesterday. The judge was unharmed, according to Balochistan Home Minister Sarfaraz Bugti via Dawn. It is unclear if ISIS or Taliban was involved.

[All emphasis is ours.]

Thanks to our sources:

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/asia/pakistan-hospital-bomb-attack-isis-taliban-behind-death-toll-a7180151.html#gallery

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation-now/2016/08/06/isil-claims-confiscate-sensitive-us-military-gear/88357578/

http://www.dawn.com/news/1276864

ISIS Updates

The sandals of Afghan protesters remain at the scene.

Multiple sources are reporting a deadly suicide attack yesterday in Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan. Two ISIS members detonated suicide vests among a peaceful demonstration. A third was shot by security as he attempted to detonate his bomb. Amaq, the media of ISIS, claimed responsibility.

At least 80 were killed and over 260 wounded according to Afghan Health Ministry.

The protest by the Shiite minority Hazaras people near Kabul University and the Afghan parliament building was advocating electricity rerouting to the poor Bamyan province.

Accounting for up to one-fifth of Afghanistan’s population, Hazaras, a Persian-speaking people who mainly live in central Afghanistan, have long been branded outsiders for their Shia faith and far Asian features in the country dominated by followers of the Sunni branch of Islam, according to a 2008 National Georgraphic article.
The White House condemned the “horrific attack,” adding that it was made “all the more despicable by the fact that it targeted a peaceful demonstration.”
(CNN)
Protesters in November march with coffins of decapitated Hazaras in Kabul.
Last November, CNN reports seven decapitated Hazaras bodies were carried by “thousands of protesters” marching through Kabul.
Taliban and ISIS were both blamed for the deaths at that time.
CNN notes recent Taliban attacks in Kabul. This is significant because Taliban and ISIS are territorial and ideological adversaries:

 

Three weeks ago, two Taliban suicide bombers killed 34 people when they attacked a convoy of buses carrying newly graduated police officers in Kabul.
On June 20 in the Afghan capital, a suicide bomber killed 14 Nepali security contractors who worked for the Canadian embassy.
The Taliban claimed responsibility for that attack in a text message sent to media organizations.

 *

Not to be forgotten, Iraq saw at least 14 people killed by suicide bomber at a security checkpoint earlier today in Baghdad (Kadhimiyah district, west bank of the Tigris River).

10 civilians and 4 policemen were killed, and at least 31 wounded.

Additionally, a bomb explosion in an Abu Ghraib market killed 3 civilians and wounded 11.

Associated Press found an online statement in which Islamic State
owned the Kadhimiyah attack, stating they targeted Shiite militia and security.

*

Meanwhile, America struggles to verify we successfully assassinated ISIS commander Omar al-Shishani in Qarayyah, Iraq after falsely claiming he was targeted and destroyed in Syria in March.

[T]he United States thought it killed al-Shishani in Syria when he traveled there to visit ISIS fighters.

ISIS quickly released a statement at that time that Al-Shishani was injured, but had survived the attack.

Al-Shishani, or “Omar the Chechen,” was reported by ISIS’s Amaq media as killed in Sharqat defending Mosul, just south of Qarayyah.

He had a $5,000,000 bounty on his head. It was unclear if the U.S. Pentagon would collect that reward for their swift and extralegal killing of the Chechen on the taxpayers’ dime.

Image result for omar the chechen

The Pentagon said Wednesday that in a separate action it took out a commander of the Pakistani Taliban who was responsible for the deaths of more than 130 children.

Thanks to our sources:
http://www.cnn.com/2016/07/23/asia/afghanistan-explosion/
https://www.yahoo.com/news/iraq-suicide-attack-baghdad-kills-least-10-people-064643412.html
http://www.cnn.com/2016/07/13/politics/isis-omar-al-shishani/index.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+rss%2Fcnn_latest+%28RSS%3A+CNN+-+Most+Recent%29

Middle East

U.S. Sending More Troops, Helicopters for Iraq War in Which We Supposedly Ended Our Involvement

America has pledged an additional 200 troops and 8 “Apache” helicopters to repel the Islamic State in Iraq, according to Associated Press.

In a Baghdad conference Monday, U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter stated the insertion of U.S. advisers–in a move eerily similar to the disastrous development of the horrific Vietnam War–would “put [the advisers] closer to the action.” The advisers will have their own security and apparently only assist the Iraqi forces in matters outside the combat zones.

Most of the new troops will be U.S. Army Special Forces. There will also be troops with training backgrounds and maintenance crews for the eight Apache helicopters.

This aligns with President Obama’s goal of supporting the Iraqis by providing extra training and intelligence to “continually tighten the noose” on ISIS ISIL.

Obama stated Monday: “My expectation is that by the end of the year we will have created the conditions whereby Mosul will eventually fall.”  As politically safe, ambivalent rallying cry as there ever was.

AP reports this insertion comes after “weeks” of discussions with American and Iraqi commanders, and Obama’s ultimate decision to authorize an increase in U.S. deployment in Iraq by 217: from 3,870 to a new 4,087.

Leading Congressional war hawk Senator John McCain (R-AZ), who suffered years as a prisoner of war in Vietnam, accepted putting another 200 or so Americans in danger, but griped Obama’s decision was “yet another example of the kind of grudging incrementalism that rarely wins wars, but could certainly lose one.”

According to Associated Press: “U.S. military and defense officials have made it clear that winning back Mosul is critical, but will be challenging, because the insurgents are dug in and have likely peppered the landscape with roadside bombs and other traps for any advancing military.”

In other Middle East news, the Taliban coordinated an attack on a Kabul, Afghanistan security facility early Tuesday morning, local time, killing at least 28 and wounding over 300, including women and children.

Thanks to our sources: http://bigstory.ap.org/article/3327956a32d7485a86725e141caa0b3b/carter-arrives-iraq-talks-how-beef-fight; https://www.yahoo.com/news/afghan-official-suicide-attack-followed-gunfire-kabul-051839981.html