Barbaric Taliban twist on executing ‘US spies’

Usually, when the Taliban capture so-called “US spies” whom they accuse of working with the Pakistani government or providing information for the US air campaign in the tribal areas, the victims are shot and killed, or occasionally, beheaded or mutilated in some way. The “spies” almost always have a note pinned to their chests warning others that this is their fate if they cross the Taliban. But today, the Taliban added a cruel, even more barbaric twist to their executions: they strapped suicide vests to two so-called “spies” and detonated the victims in front of a crowd. From Reuters:

Five masked militants paraded the hand-cuffed men before dozens of people in the Datta Kheil [note, that is Datta Khel, the al Qaeda stronghold] area and accused them of passing information to the United States on targets for its CIA-operated pilotless drone aircraft.

“They strapped explosives around their bodies and then blew them up,” a Pakistani intelligence official in the region told Reuters by telephone.

Since 2004, the Taliban have executed hundreds of people in the tribal areas in an effort to uproot the tribal order and impose their own. Those killed are often tribal leaders or elders who oppose or do not actively support Taliban rule. To cover their tracks, the Taliban often label these victims as US spies.

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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  • Render says:

    Wow, they’re moving into the 19th century…

  • PoliNewsInt says:

    They executed spies this way in late 2009 for the first time. videos of these executions are out, using explosive wire normally used for mining, strapped to neck and body of alleged “spies”.

  • Mir says:

    Its interesting that they have the vests to “waste”. Explosive vests send a new message but your dead either way. Why spend the expertise, time, and increased money when you can use the .40 cent solution of a 7.62 round. This may be a one time deal, or could be indicating the lack of operational suicide bombers to exploit the vests in a timely manner.

  • Bungo says:

    This doesn’t sound very safe for anyone in the general vicinity.

  • kp says:

    “using explosive wire normally used for mining”

    DetCord(tm), I presume. PETN in a plastic tube with a blasting cap attached.

    Not quite maximum barbarism (manual beheading is more horrific) but perhaps easier to impress a crowd. The Taliban shouldn’t forget what happened when Kabul fell: the locals turned on them and killed the Taliban brutally too.

  • KaneKaizer says:

    I guess the entire population is spying on them or something.

  • Atiyyatullah says:

    The reason behind it is simple. In Islam, when you murder someone, then you are killed in the same way. These people killed people via explosions, so they were killed in the same way. If they used poison, then they would be poisoned. If a spy has his head removed, then it was probably simply due to spying and he probably was not directly tied to any killing. However, these people were, therefore they were killed in the manner that they killed. That is justice.

  • Mr T says:

    That is justice?
    That is lunacy. Since they didn’t actually do the killing, they just supposedly helped.
    When the innocent women and child are killed by a random suicide bomber helped by Hakeemullah Mehsud, is it justice to blow him up “the same way”?

  • T Ruth says:

    “However, these people were, therefore they were killed in the manner that they killed. That is justice.”
    First we had the Taliban in Bill’s inbox. Now we seem to have them in the Comment box too!
    To borrow a phrase from Einstein, God gave these guys a brain by mistake, a spine is all they needed.
    Lost somewhere in the 7th to 14th centuries these imbeciles are holding up the progress of humanity. The only box i’d like to see them in is a coffin, which by their sense of justice, is in itself undeserved and a waste of a tree.
    I’m assuming that these ‘spies’/elders stood for civil values and freedom and took the risk against these medieval savages with their sharia and all that nonsense. I commiserate with their families and fellow villagers who stand on the side of what is truly right, regardless of what the Islamic books say or don’t say.

  • T Ruth says:

    As for Pakistan, it is a lost case. If you want to get a sense of how lost their society is, try reading this. Its simply not possible to read through the whole thing anymore than it is to meditate on a can, sorry bucket, of worms. It’s enough to make one want to puke–that word used deliberately when i would usually use a milder alternative.

  • Civy says:

    I’m sure this is winning them lots of friends and support. Public opinion polls clearly show that Muslim street support has evaporated for Al Queda because of these tactics.


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