The Taliban Story Hole–(updated)

[Things are getting complicated in the Taliban narrative. subject of the following article, Mullah Abdul Manan, is the brother of original Taliban Supremo, Mullah Omar .   He was recently honored with a seat on the Rahbari Shura (leadership council), along with his nephew, Omar’s eldest son, Mullah Mohammad Yaqoob, and Sirajuddin Haqqani.  They are named as deputies to new Taliban leader Hibatullah Akhundzada, who recently replaced the violently contested replacement for Mullah Omar, Akhtar Mansour, who was murdered in Balochistan by an American drone.  Omar’s brother and his son both opposed Mansour for Taliban king, because he attacked his own men (who contested the election) and because the succession was mishandled.

Does the arrest of Abdul Manan represent a crackdown upon the Mansour faction, or upon the rejectionists, who follow Mullah Rasoul?  Which side fights against the Afghan Govt, which side bombs civilian targets, primarily Shia mosques and gatherings?  The Taliban are a living, evolving sculpture, shaped by the hands of competing spy agencies, telling us the story of decades of the international intelligence agency wars.]

Taliban commander involved in robbery arrested from Charikar city


taliban arrest

A commander of the Taliban group involved in robbery, extortion and other criminal activities was arrested from the northern Parwan province of Afghanistan.

The National Directorate of Security (NDS) said Abdul Manan who is also famous as Wazir was arrested from the vicinity of Charikar district.

According to a statement by NDS, another companion of Manan was also arrested by the intelligence operatives.

The statement further added that Manan was involved in robbery, roadside bombings and harassment of the local residents and a Ak-47 rifle along with a pistol were also confiscated from him.

NDS said the detained militants were long involved in terrorist activities and Manan spent three years in prison who rejoined the Taliban group after he was released.

According to NDS, Manan was operating under the command of Hashmatullah together with his other companions.

The anti-government armed militant groups including the Taliban insurgents have not commented regarding the report so far.

Parwan is among the relatively volatile provinces in northern Afghanistan where anti-government armed militant groups are actively operating in a number of its remote districts and often carry out insurgency activities.

Iraq (NOT US) Air Force Destroys 200 ISIS Vehicles, Kills 200+ Terrorists

[SEE: U.S.-led strikes pound Islamic State in Iraq, kill 250 fighters  REUTERS]

Iraq Fallujah Islamic State militants
Iraqi security forces inspect vehicles belonging to escaping Islamic State militants outside Fallujah, Iraq.
(Photo: Associated Press)

Iraq Destroys 200 Vehicles in Airstrike on Alleged ISIS Convoy

NBC News.svg

Video Purports to Show Airstrike on ISIS Convoy in Iraq

Iraqi airstrikes destroyed around 200 vehicles believed to be carrying ISIS fighters fleeing one of their former strongholds — killing an unknown number of people, a senior official told NBC News on Thursday.

Brig. Yahya Rasool, a spokesman for Iraq’s Joint Operation Command, said Iraqi helicopters and warplanes attacked the convoy on a road about 12 miles south of Fallujah on Wednesday.

“All ISIS militants traveling in these vehicles were killed,” he said without providing a number of people who died.

The Iraqi military released video of the airstrikes. The Pentagon said Wednesday that it did not have details about the incident.

It was unclear how the Iraqi military identified that the convoy was made up entirely of vehicles beloning to ISIS militants.

NBC News could not independently confirm either the Iraqi military’s account or the Reuters report.

However, civilians are known to have been displaced in the area where the attack occurred.

The alleged fighters were trying to escape the previously ISIS-held Fallujah area, Iraqi officials said.

A senior Iraqi commander declared Sunday that Fallujah was “fully liberated” from ISIS militants after a more than month-long military operation.

The Fallujah liberation has fueled an exodus of thousands of families, overwhelming camps for the displaced run by the government and aid groups.

ISIS Loses Control of Fallujah

In a separate incident on Wednesday, Iraqi helicopter strikes killed some 150 alleged ISIS militants as they tried to reach neighboring Syria, Rasool said.

“They were trying to escape in order to reach Syria then the Iraqi helicopters found a place ISIS were hiding,” he added.

That attack occurred around 2 miles west of Amiriyah Fallujah, according to Rasool.

Reality dawns on Erdogan

Reality dawns on Erdogan and the AKP


The attack at Istanbul’s Atatürk Airport is only the latest terrorist atrocity to be committed in Turkey. Our hearts go out to the injured and the families of those killed.

It is also hard to say that this will be the last such attack in our country.

We have already had a string of terrorist atrocities committed over the past six months by the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) or the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK). As citizens we have to be vigilant and alert, and unfortunately brace ourselves for more.

We are reminded once again that it will take unity and perseverance to combat this modern-day scourge. We have underlined here before that Turkey cannot fight this fight alone. There are things it can do but this is an international problem requiring close international cooperation and coordination.

This is why the government’s realization, belated as it is, that international isolation has been detrimental to Turkey’s interests is very timely. There is no point in complaining about why the country was allowed to paint itself into a corner. Tomes have already been written about the foreign policy mistakes committed by the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP).

It is all too easy at this stage to hit at President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and the government for having pursued policies that have left Turkey with fewer friends and more enemies or rivals in the world. Correct as our arguments may be, we have to look forward.

As matters stand, Erdoğan is going to have quite a bit of explaining to do to his Islamist grassroots supporters as to why he has been forced to go against the grain of his Islamism and normalize ties with Israel.

Commentary in the pro-government media shows that there is discomfort over this development.

The Islamist Humanitarian Relief Foundation (IHH), on the other hand, has rejected the rapprochement with Israel. It was this group – supported so avidly at the time by the government – that caused all the trouble in the first place, after it chartered the Mavi Marmara aid ship and tried to break the Israeli blockade of Gaza in 2010.

That effort resulted in the deaths of nine pro-Palestinian Turkish activists, killed by Israeli commandoes in the high seas. It is inevitable that the IHH should be accusing the government of caving in to Israel under U.S. pressure, saying it too has blood on its hands now.

Pro-government opinion-framers are nevertheless trying to given the impression that Turkey came out the winner in the normalization deal with Israel. The fact that there are ultra-right-wing Israel deputies and papers that agree with this is making their task a little easier.

Eyes are currently also focused on Ankara’s attempts to resolve its differences with Moscow. It appears that Turkey is even prepared to pay compensation to the family of the Russian jet fighter killed by Turkmen fighters in northern Syria last November after the Turkish air force downed his plane.

The government will have to explain not only to its supporters but also to nationalist quarters why it is apologizing (in so many words) to Russia, and is prepared to pay compensation after insisting that it was legally correct in downing the Russian jet because it had strayed into Turkish airspace.

All of this aside though, it is a good for Turkey that this normalization process in foreign policy – which will no doubt also include ties with Egypt and perhaps involve a more realistic take on Syria – has started. This is the only way Turkey can regain the international influence, let alone prestige, it lost.

This represents a “foreign policy reality check” for Erdogan and the AKP. They have to backpedal on many issues now despite their previous bombastic remarks about Turkey’s great role in world affairs. The hope is that they will have finally understood that the world is far too complex to accommodate their Islamist vision for Turkey and its region.