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World Top special ops commander says US can't count on Taliban to fight ISIS-K

11:45  23 november  2021
11:45  23 november  2021 Source:   washingtonexaminer.com

Afghanistan: Taliban take over TV station in strategic city

  Afghanistan: Taliban take over TV station in strategic city The Taliban have taken over a TV station in Afghanistan's strategic Helmand province, a source at the TV and radio station told CNN Monday, marking the latest of a series of advances by the militant group in the country. © Hoshang Hashimi/AFP/Getty Images An Afghan National Army commando stands guard on top of a vehicle along the road in Enjil district of Herat province on August 1, 2021, as skirmishes between Afghan National Army and Taliban continues. The Helmand TV station, located in the city of Lashkar Gah, the capital of Helmand province, is operated by state-run Radio and Television Afghanistan.

The head of U.S. Special Operations Command said he doesn’t believe the United States can rely on Afghanistan's newly instilled Taliban government in the fight against the threat from the Islamic State.

  Top special ops commander says US can't count on Taliban to fight ISIS-K © Provided by Washington Examiner

Gen. Richard Clarke said he doesn’t “see [the Taliban] as a partner,” and he noted the threat from within Afghanistan “still exists” and is growing, during an appearance at the Halifax International Security Forum on Friday, according to Defense One.

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The Pentagon is relying on “over-the-horizon” capabilities to hit targets now that U.S. troops are not in Afghanistan following the conclusion of the 20-year war at the end of August. But critics and experts have questioned the feasibility of depending on such strikes without ground forces to gather real-time intelligence.

Taliban Says U.S. Sanctions, Frozen Assets Harming Afghans Amid Worsening Poverty

  Taliban Says U.S. Sanctions, Frozen Assets Harming Afghans Amid Worsening Poverty "American sanctions have not only played havoc with trade and business, but also with humanitarian assistance," Foreign Minister Amir Khan Muttaqi wrote.Foreign Minister Amir Khan Muttaqi said the frozen assets are hurting the public, from the health sector to education and other services, in a statement posted online. His comments were posted a day after the World Food Program (WFP) said that millions of people in Afghanistan are facing poverty. It also warns that Afghanistan is becoming the world's biggest humanitarian crisis, according to Business Insider.

“It’s going to be harder,” without forces present, Clarke added. “Anytime you have a physical presence on the ground, it stimulates the enemy forces. You see and sense with partner forces. So it is going to be harder.”

He also said the U.S. focus in Afghanistan should be on the growing threat from ISIS-K, the Afghanistan affiliate of the Islamic State which could have the capabilities to launch an attack outside of the country within less than a year, according to various Defense officials, and that the U.S. should be partnering with those on-the-ground for help.

“We’ve built amazing counterterrorism capabilities over the last 20 years,” the general said. “Some of those capabilities can still be used in Afghanistan today. We have to work with Afghans that remain in Afghanistan to see and sense, and we have to work with regional allies. There are still other embassies that remain in Afghanistan. There are still other intel threads. But the most important thing for us in Afghanistan is to understand the intel picture of where ISIS-K exists there today.”

Hidden books, secret meetings, precious hope: In Afghanistan, girls risk it all for an education

  Hidden books, secret meetings, precious hope: In Afghanistan, girls risk it all for an education The Taliban effectively banned education for the majority of girls in Afghanistan. But many are now studying in secret.Three months after the Taliban seized control of Afghanistan, most secondary schools for girls remain closed, with only boys and male teachers allowed back into classrooms. Sadat, 16, is one of a number of female Afghan students risking her safety to educate herself.

The U.S. is hoping the Taliban can successfully fight off ISIS-K and other terror groups that could regrow under the current leadership.

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“We want the Taliban to succeed against ISIS-K,” State Department Special Representative Thomas West told reporters earlier this month. “When it comes to other groups, look, al Qaeda continues to have a presence in Afghanistan that we are very concerned about, and that is an issue of ongoing concern for us in our dialogue with the Taliban.”

Special Representative Deborah Lyons told the U.N. Security Council last week that ISIS-K was now present in "nearly all provinces" of Afghanistan "and [are] increasingly active."

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Tags: News, Defense, National Security, War in Afghanistan, Afghanistan, Pentagon, ISIS

Original Author: Mike Brest

Original Location: Top special ops commander says US can't count on Taliban to fight ISIS-K

What Russia, China, Iran Want in Afghanistan When U.S. Troops Leave .
Russia, China and Iran seek to ensure stability in Afghanistan while securing their own interests, as friendly ties with Kabul are tested by a desire to engage with the powerful Taliban movement that has retaken much of the country. RussiaFor Russia, this means stepping up to a longstanding engagement in a country where it has a modern history of intervention and withdrawal.The 1980s Soviet attempt to defend a communist government in Kabul was met with fierce resistance by local and foreign mujahideen fighters, who received support from Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and the United States.

usr: 1
This is interesting!