Jihadists loyal to the Islamic State overran a checkpoint manned by the Libyan National Army (LNA) yesterday. A spokesman for the LNA confirmed that 11 victims were beheaded.
For decades the country has permitted a number of jihadist groups to openly operate under its aegis. A map highlights the more prominent groups openly operating inside Pakistan.
Pakistan’s denial of harboring terrorist groups that conduct attacks outside of its borders falls flat on its face when looking at Lashkar-e-Taiba, which not only supports al Qaeda and the Taliban, but has executed numerous attacks inside of Pakistan’s neighbor and enemy, India, as well as in Afghanistan.
An Islamic State production featuring the young man responsible for stabbing rampage in the Russian city of Surgat is similar to past videos released by the group. The jihadist swore allegiance to Abu Bakr al Baghdadi before his day of terror. The video also contains a clip of a young Russian child beheading a captive.
The Taliban continues to demonstrate that it can conduct concurrent operations across the country, while Afghan forces largely remain on the defensive. The district of Khamab in Jawzjan has gone back and forth between Taliban and government control over the past several years.
Taliban spokesman Zahibullah Mujahid denounced Trump’s decision to remain engaged in Afghanistan and said that Taliban fighters will “sustain our Jihad.” Additionally he repeated the canard that the Taliban does not pose a threat to foreign countries.
With words unprecedented for a US president, Trump called out Pakistan for harboring and supporting terrorist groups that target and kill US citizens and said there would be a radical change in policy toward the South Asian nation. Trump indicated the US would work to increase ties with India, Pakistan’s neighbor and greatest enemy, a move sure to both enrage as well as frighten Pakistani elites.
A complete US withdrawal from Afghanistan would have been disastrous. The US government needs to drastically reassess America’s jihadist enemies and avoid the policy pitfalls of the past.