Taliban occupied Ghazni City police station as Resolute Support claimed city was under Afghan control

The Taliban occupied a police station in Ghazni City and looted the facility even as Resolute Support claimed the entire city was under Afghan government control.

Video posted on Aug. 15 on the Taliban’s official propaganda website, Voice of Jihad, showed Taliban fighters inside a police station motor pool as they looted the complex. One fighter was seen carrying a box of ammunition as another pickup truck was loaded with supplies gathered from the compound.

In another scene, Taliban fighters occupied what appeared to be a mosque and a large security outpost outside of it. The security outpost looked like one used by Afghan police as a security checkpoint. It is made with US-supplied HESCO barriers.

Other parts of the video showed Taliban fighters walking in the streets and stationed at what appeared to be a market. Additionally, video shot from rooftops showed buildings in Ghazni City burning in the distance.

Throughout the five day-long Taliban incursion and occupation of large areas of Ghazni City, from Aug. 10-14, Resolute Support, NATO’s command in Afghanistan, consistently maintained that the city “remains under Afghan control.” Resolute Support could not explain independent video of blocks of the city on fire and Taliban fighters calmly patrolling the streets. Nor could it explain why, if the city was under government control, Resolute support was forced to launch dozens of airstrikes while the Afghan military had to clear city and appoint the Army Chief of Staff to lead the operation.

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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7 Comments

  • Nick Mastrovito says:

    Bill, have you become the Taliban spokesman?

    • Bill Roggio says:

      I have been getting this a lot. I am advocating that we understand our enemy and fight it effectively. Unfortunately many people can’t understand criticism that is intended right the ship. Somehow this makes me a Taliban spokesman.

      It brings me no pleasure to expose the misleading and outright false statements. I sincerely wish Resolute Support was giving us an honest assessment of the war and striving to fight it effectively. Sadly neither of those things are happening.

      If we want to lose the war (which I don’t) then we should uncritically accept what Resolute Support and the Afghan government has to say about it. We are being led down the path of failure.

      If you are looking for the blinkered, Pollyannish view of the war in Afghanistan, then this is not the place for you. I suggest reading Resolute Support’s website, Twitter, and Facebook pages for that view.

      • D says:

        Your are exactly correct…DENIAL…another Vietnam in the making…amazing how we have learned very little, if anything!

      • John says:

        Only reason we are able to breathe in afghanistan is because we are a dollar sign. No way in hell afghans kill each other without that dollar. Even then they wont try hard because its their own people. Saying they are pakistanis is not good enough propoganda. Also, people dont know that there are one million taliban fighter on reserve and they constantly rotate them and if needed could easily overun country like early 90s. They are just sucking usa dry we give them a purpose to fight and gain steam until this totally blows over.

  • Sid Finster says:

    The fact that 1. the Afghan military is forced to hole up in the cities and 2. is apparently unable or unwilling to fight without coalition air support says it all.

    No amount of spin or wishful thinking will put a shine on this turd.

  • irebukeu says:

    There go our lying eyes again!

  • Ed W. says:

    History does not repeat itself, but human nature does. We have been in Afghanistan for how many years? How many Afghan troops have we trained and equipped in that time? Has there ever been an American field grade officer, in a training mission, who has said the Afghan troop leaders and troops he was responsible for training, had not and were not trained? I doubt it. Let’s get pragmatic here. Corruption in Afghanistan is rampant in the government, police and military ranks. We have been and continue to operate with blinders on. If we continue to operate this way, we will only prolong the agony.

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