Afghanistan’s National Directorate of Security claims it has confirmed that Asim Umar, the emir of Al Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent, was killed during a Sept. 23 raid in Helmand province. Other key AQIS leaders were also killed in the fighting.
In 2001, Omar was unwavering in his position that the Taliban was religiously obligated to protect Osama bin Laden and his al Qaeda cadre. The Taliban has remained true to Omar’s words, and fought an 18 year long war to defend the terror group.
The Taliban continues to use rural areas it controls to threaten major population centers, including provincial capitals.
Not only does the Taliban reject democracy in Afghanistan, it is opposed to it worldwide. Given the Taliban’s clear and consistent views on the “evils” of democracy and all Muslim’s religious obligation to resit it, it is absolute folly for the State Department to attempt to appeal to the Taliban to permit elections to take place.
Afghan officials have identified several AQIS members who were killed during a controversial raid in Musa Qala, Helmand earlier this week. They have also posted images purportedly documenting the weaponry, explosives and cash seized at the jihadists’ compound.
“The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan has repeatedly made it absolutely clear that the aim of this Jihad is the end of occupation and establishment of an Islamic government,” the Taliban says in a recent statement.
On Sept. 19, Thomas Joscelyn testified before the House Committee on Foreign Affairs at a hearing titled, “The Trump Administration’s Afghanistan Policy.” His testimony focused on the close working relationship between the Taliban and Al-Qaeda.
The Taliban has warned civilians to stay away from places near government facilitates, including election sites, as it says these targets are fair game. However, given the scarcity of medical facilities, it is impossible for Afghan civilians to avoid hospitals such as the one in Qalat.