Friend of the show LTG (Ret.) H.R. McMaster joins Bill once again to discuss America’s botched withdrawal from Afghanistan one year ago. Despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary — including an ongoing close relationship with al Qaeda, the United States designated the Taliban as “partners in peace” and handed the terrorist group keys to a state apparatus. Afghanistan fell and became the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan. But it didn’t have to.
Sirajuddin Haqqani, who at the time was the operational commander of the Haqqani Network, was joined by his brother Badruddin Haqqani, Qari Zakir, the Taliban’s chief of suicide bombers, Mullah Sangeen Zadran, a dangerous Haqqani leader, and Ghani Muhammad, an Al Qaeda-linked military commander based in Pakistan, in the video. They give a send off to the suicide assault team that attacked Forward Operating Base Fenty on Nov. 12, 2010.
Jamaat-ul-Ahrar and Movement of the Taliban in Pakistan leader Omar Khalid Khurasani, who is believed to have given sanctuary to Ayman al Zawahiri in the past, has called for global jihad, attacks on the US, and the establishment of the caliphate, and celebrated the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks on the U.S. He is reported to have been killed in a district in Afghansitan that has hosted an Al Qaeda training camp in the past.
Zawahiri’s death is being hailed as a counterterrorism success, but that masks the fact Afghanistan has become a safe haven for top Al Qaeda leaders.
You guessed it. Our guest is, indeed, Caleb Weiss. This time, he and Bill discuss how (and which) prison breaks fit into the larger strategy of various Jihadi groups — and why some don’t bother.
Zawahiri lives. The Taliban-Al Qaeda alliance remains strong. The leaders of Al Qaeda’s branches in North and East Africa have assumed roles in Al Qaeda’s line of succession.
This policy both limits the effectiveness of anti-Taliban resistance and reduces the U.S. military and intelligence communities’ ability to monitor and strike Al Qaeda, the Islamic State and other regional and global terror groups based in Afghanistan.
The presence of Abdul Haq al Turkistani, a veteran Al Qaeda leader, in Afghanistan contradicts the Taliban’s claims that there are no foreign fighters based in the country.