Taliban deny Mullah Omar treated in Pakistani hospital

Mullah Mohammed Omar, the Amir al Mumineen (“commander of the faithful”) of the Afghan and Pakistani Taliban.

The Taliban are categorically denying the recent report that Mullah Mohammed Omar, the leader of the Taliban, was hospitalized for a heart condition. Zabihullah Mujahid, the Taliban’s “spokesman,” calls the rumor a product of “the American State Department and a CIA-run private intelligence network, The Eclipse Group” and goes on to label the report as propaganda. The Taliban’s statement, from the Voice of Jihad, is printed in full below. See the original Spy Talk / Washington Post report on Omar’s supposed heart attack here.

The Taliban’s characterization is odd, as US military and intelligence officials I’ve spoken to put zero stock in the report, which has been describes as RUMINT (rumor intelligence) at best and worthless at worst. While it certainly is possible for Pakistan’s military and intelligence services to shelter Omar and provide medical treatment (see the case of Qari Saifullah Akhtar, the leader of the Harakat-ul-Jihad-al-Islami, who was recently freed after being placed into protective custody in August 2010 to receive medical treatment), there just isn’t any information to back this up, other than a claim from a Pakistani doctor.

The Eclipse Group, which is pushing this report, is the same group that claimed last year that Omar was arrested (and not in protective custody, a big difference) by Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence Agency, and then pushed the story throughout the summer. A basic understanding of the history and the relationship between Omar and Pakistan’s ISI should have raised red flags at The Eclipse Group for any intel report claiming Pakistan jailed Omar. Now, we’re expected to believe that Omar’s in protective custody instead of in jail? Perhaps the Eclipse Group can tell us what has changed with the relationship between Omar and the ISI between last summer and now?

Remarks of the Spokesman of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan about the Baseless Rumor of Illness of the Esteemed Amir-ul-Momineen

Quoting the American State Department and a CIA-run private intelligence network, The Eclipse Group, an American daily, The Washington Post has published an unsubstantiated and baseless report, claiming that the esteemed Amir-ul-Momineen, Mullah Omar Mujahid had a heart attack and was treated in a hospital in Karachi. The afore-said intelligence network says, the source of its

information is a physician who saw Amir-ul-momineen after the operation. But the report does not mention the name of the physician. According to the network, the physician says that he was not present in the operation theatre but heard from other physicians that Mullah Omar was suffering from cardiac complications. Some Afghan and international media outlets circulated the rumors without first verifying and substantiating it.

The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan categorically refutes this baseless and fatuous claim and believes that circulation of this rumor, is part and parcel of the propaganda war launched by the enemy.

The esteemed Amir-ul-momineen (may Allah protect him) has never suffered from such disease, that would have required to rush him to a hospital. The enemy is circulating these rumors to cover up its own defeat at the military field and to distract the attention of the common man.

It is worth mentioning that the enemy has no proof in this regard nor has any reason to prove its case. The only proof that it relies on in the report, weakens the claim in itself. The physician mentioned in the report says that he has not seen such an incident personally but has heard ( the story) from other doctors. It is in itself a fabricated reason.

In view of the propaganda drive by the enemy, the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan declares that this fatuous and baseless claim of the enemy will not have any negative impact on the resistance and operations of the Mujahideen against the invading forces.

All the people of Afghanistan know that the enemy has launched the propaganda campaign in order to cover up its defeat. It gives circulation to baseless rumors which often end up proving a failure and fatuous. In fact these baseless rumors only add to undermining the credibility of the enemy. Apart from that, no gain the enemy will have.

Zabihullah Mujahid

Spokesman of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan

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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  • Paul says:

    Must be true then!

  • Charu says:

    Could the unnamed Pakistani doctor be the real target of this rumor? Perhaps the ISI had their doubts about him and conducted a sting to see if the story got to the Eclipse Group. In any case, it is obvious that Mullah Omar is sheltered and protected by the ISI who also provide their valuable asset with modern medical care, and so whether or not this report is accurate is a moot point. Odd how these jihadists who wish to take the world back to the 7th century have no issue with taking modern (Western) medicines and treatments!

  • gandalf says:

    The story is just plain nonsense. Eclipse has been dropped by DOD and is trying to get some publicity. Too bad they have lost their credibility in the process.
    Think about it, would ISI send Omar, one of the most hunted men in the world to a public hospital? When ISI has any number of Pakistan Army/ISI hospitals that are far better equiped? And obviously more secure for such a valuable asset?
    What doctor would reveal himself this way? It would be a death sentence. Besides, Karachi is too full of roadblocks and curfews and violence, Omar is much more likely to be in Quetta.

  • Marlin says:

    For those who are interested in learning more about the Eclipse Group, there is a (somewhat biased, in my opinion) article out today.

    Duane R. Clarridge parted company with the Central Intelligence Agency more than two decades ago, but from poolside at his home near San Diego, he still runs a network of spies.
    Mr. Clarridge declined to be interviewed, but issued a statement that likened his operation, called the Eclipse Group, to the Office of Strategic Services, the C.I.A.

  • James says:

    Concerning cyclops (aka mullah omar), here’s an idea that might be long overdue.
    Considering that he has a prosthetic eye, can you imagine the intelligence bonanza that could be yielded if CIA could somehow get a tracking device surreptitiously embedded in his prosthetic eye?
    It seems these thugs have a high propensity of losing limbs from messing with explosives. I’m surprised CIA hasn’t thought of this yet, if they haven’t as of yet done so.
    I am serious about this.

  • 107YearOldeMan says:

    Although i laughed at the idea, it isn’t a bad idea. an electronic device inside a false eye seems rather difficult to arrange.
    so… are you saying, find him,slip him a drug that mimics a heart-attack, deliver him to doctor ops, replace eye, send him home to his buddies and we see all.
    sounds like mission impossible- not likely.
    yet impossible banks and impossible security systems are beat regularly.
    good luck with this plan or variations.
    i do not believe we have had much luck with the first step: find him.
    plan b: kill him and his buddies. go home.

  • crusader says:

    does anybody know if he is the supreme commander for the taliban in both afg and pak or only in afg?

  • Khan says:

    i think its a false report Pakistan are fighting for war on terror how could we possibly be arrange the operation for him in karachi . all the CIA & ISI is sleeping when he was in karachi for the operation ,,,,,,,,, so funny ….. to read that i have seen so many flims regarding the WMD & war on terror movies what was the outcome of these wars ” nothing ” but only innocent people died since 11 year how many Taliban leaders has been capture or killed in a drown attacked.. US have technologies but are useless to captured them…. US had making the same mistake as Soviet Union did ….
    this war is never end & no taliban leader & Al-Qaeda leader will be capture…. mark my word US already loss this war since its started……..


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