New Hakeemullah tape?


Hakeemullah Mehsud, left. AFP photo.

According to AKI and The Express Tribune, Hakeemullah Mehsud, who has died more times the past year than the most daring of cats, has released a videotape. First from AKI:

In the video released to Adnkronos International (AKI), Hakeemullah calls for Muslim militants to renew their struggle but it has not been confirmed when the video was made.

The Taliban leader is featured in several videos recorded in Pashtu from a secret location in the town of Mir Ali, where militants are believed to be hiding in North Waziristan.

Hakeemullah rejects claims that militants are terrorists and calls on militants to continue their fight against the “crusaders”.

“Don’t be saddened, don’t be disheartened! You will dominate if you are Muslim,” Hakeemullah said.

The Express Tribune notes that there is nothing on the tape to confirm when it was made, thus failing to prove that Hakeemullah is alive:

There is no indication of when and where this video has been shot. It is not even clear whether Hakeemullah is recovering from injuries.

Here is one thing that is nearly certain: the reason the Inter-Services Intelligence agency came out and said they believe that Hakeemullah is alive is that they knew this tape was in the pipeline.

Bill Roggio is a Senior Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and the Editor of FDD's Long War Journal.

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  • anonymous says:

    that video has been on youtube since late february. nothing new at all, usual pakistani media blah blah. he’s speaking about the pakistani operation in south waziristan late 2009

  • T Ruth says:

    The ISI’s been had and is being had. Thats good….

  • kp says:

    Releasing an old tape with no date information that appears to be pre-Jan 2010 strike where we know he was hit (even the ISI admit that) is another interesting piece of circumstantial negative evidence for HM being incapable of making a new video or even audio tape. Another tick in the alive but incapable of leadership column.

    It would be interesting to know if some of the people who have been hit recently (not HVTs but others in the org) are part of the media org for the TTP. Perhaps that internal/external communication facility has been degraded. But even lack of people or equipment wouldn’t prevent HM from say recording a message on audio cassette and smuggling it out looking like a music tape (everyone uses them there) for distribution for a big Pakistani city.

    In fact that would be a good method for UBL or AZ to get his message transported on the middle of a reused tape. Far less suspicious than an 8mm video tape or CD-R or CF/SD card (though the latter are easier to hide).


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