- NYT’s David Brooks: Obama has ‘manhood problem’ in Middle East
- Ted Cruz thanks Obama for denying visas to terrorists
- Survivors recall chaos, fear in Everest avalanche
- General Mills apologizes for ‘right to sue’ confusion, reverses policy
- Dealer wanted in U.S. for art fraud nabbed in Spain
- Easter morning delivery for space station
- Boxer Rubin ‘Hurricane’ Carter dies at 76
- Probe could complicate Rick Perry’s prospects
- Ukraine, Russia trade blame for eastern shootout
- Obamas head to church on Easter morning
Taliban accuse U.S. of ‘unjust’ war in Afghanistan
Eleven years since the invasion of Afghanistan, the U.S. is “facing utter defeat in Afghanistan militarily, politically, economically and in all other facets and it has exhausted all other means through which to prolong its illegal war,” Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said in an e-mailed statement.
A U.S.-led coalition invaded Afghanistan in October 2001 after the Taliban government in Kabul, which had provided shelter to Osama bin Laden, refused cut ties to al Qaeda or turn in its leaders for their role in the attacks. Airliners hijacked by militants crashed into the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and a field near Shanksville, Pa.
The Taliban spokesman said no Afghans were involved in the Sept. 11 attacks, and the U.S. had not been able to provide any “legitimate or logical proofs” proving such links.
The Taliban called on U.S. officials to “halt shedding the blood of the oppressed Afghans under this pretext and to follow the path of sound reasoning instead of tyranny and stupidity.”
President Obama has set a 2014 deadline to withdraw all U.S. combat forces from Afghanistan. NATO partners also will leave the country by that time.
However, he added, that it is the Islamist group’s “due legal and religious right to defend our homeland and establish in it an Islamic system.”
More than 2,000 American troops have been killed in the war in Afghanistan.
“Despite America spending large amounts of military and economical assets under the title of homeland security and murdering thousands of its soldiers by the hands of Afghans however no American is safe in any society today,” said Mr. Mujahid.
The Taliban leadership is at odds over peace talks. U.S. efforts to pursue such a track have deepened rifts between the group’s political leadership that favors reconciliation and the field commanders determined to continue the war.
A report released by the Royal United Services Institute on Monday concluded that the Taliban is prepared to work with the U.S. on security in Afghanistan and participate in peace negotiations in return for international political recognition. The report is based on interviews with two former senior Taliban officials, one with close ties to the group’s leader, Mullah Mohammad Omar, a lead negotiator for the Taliban and an Afghan mediator with extensive experience mediating with the militants.
The Taliban will not budge on its insistence not to negotiate with Afghan President Hamid Karzai or his administration, who they view as corrupt and weak, says the report.
And the group will not accept the Afghan Constitution, a key condition laid down by the U.S. and Karzai administration for reconciliation talks, because the leadership perceive that acceptance would be “tantamount to surrender,” adds the report.
© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
Ashish Kumar Sen is a reporter covering foreign policy and international developments for The Washington Times.
Prior to joining The Times, Mr. Sen worked for publications in Asia and the Middle East. His work has appeared in a number of publications and online news sites including the British Broadcasting Corp., Asia Times Online and Outlook magazine.
- Amid clashes, White House nixes 'lethal' Ukraine aid
- U.S. rebukes Iran's U.N. envoy pick over 1979 embassy attack
- U.S. missing out on big opportunities in Africa, Liberian official says
- House follows Senate in passing bill to bar Iran's U.N. pick
- Obama admin unfairly pitting China against North Korea: diplomat
TWT Video Picks
Women losing coverage under Obamacare, too
- Scalia to students on high taxes: At a certain point, 'perhaps you should revolt'
- Former Ranger breaks silence on Pat Tillman death: I may have killed him
- Special Forces' suicide rates hit record levels casualties of 'hard combat'
- Feds approve powdered alcohol; 'Palcohol' available later this year
- Tactical advantage: Russian military shows off impressive new gear
- USAID documents cite Hillary Clinton in chaos of Afghan aid
- U.S. Navy to turn seawater into jet fuel
- Army goes to war with National Guard, seizes Apache attack helicopters
- Glenn Beck takes on Hollywood with big movie production plans
- EXCLUSIVE: FBI blocked in corruption probe involving Sens. Reid, Lee
Top 10 handguns in the U.S.