Taliban chief roars back, confounds America

By Daily Maverick Legacy 12 October 2009

In 2001, Mullah Muhammad Omar’s Taliban fighters had been routed and he was on the run. Afghans were, mostly, cheering the return of girls’ education, music and even shaving. Now, Mullah Omar’s insurgency has regained much of the ground it lost. Former CIA Afghan expert Bruce Riedel says, “He’s a semiliterate individual who has met with no more than a handful of non-Muslims in his entire life. And he’s staged one of the most remarkable military comebacks in modern history.” American officials are trying to make sense of his comeback: Is Omar the brains behind Taliban tactics or does he have help from Pakistani intelligence? Might the Taliban be amenable to negotiations or can his network be divided and weakened in some other way? Does it require the Taliban’s total defeat? US commander General Stanley McChrystal’s recent report concluded, “the insurgents currently have the initiative” and “the overall situation is deteriorating”. And Omar’s own statements make the same basic points: The mujahedeen are countering with “sophisticated and cutting-edge technology” as the Taliban movement approaches “the edge of victory”. Need advice? Ask the Russians, the British, the Persians, Alexander the Great….


While we have your attention...

An increasingly rare commodity, quality independent journalism costs money - though not nearly as much as its absence.

Every article, every day, is our contribution to Defending Truth in South Africa. If you would like to join us on this mission, you could do much worse than support Daily Maverick's quest by becoming a Maverick Insider.

Click here to become a Maverick Insider and get a closer look at the Truth.


US president’s vow to drop countries that are ‘not our friends’ threatens US aid to SA

By Peter Fabricius

"We spend the first year of a child's life teaching it to walk and talk and the rest of its life to shut up and sit down. There's something wrong there." ~ Neil deGrasse Tyson