Flush with western weapons, Taliban may host more 'jihadis'

·3-min read
Representative image
Representative image

Kabul [Afghanistan], August 28 (ANI): After getting hold of the United States' sophisticated weapons following its so-called victory in Afghanistan, the Taliban are most likely to host more Jihadis.

Taliban has captured Afghanistan after 20 years as US President Joe Biden announced the ending of the US military mission at the end of August.

Dnyanesh Kamat from Asia Times said that with a massive inventory of American and NATO weaponry, the Taliban has become the world's most lethal terrorist group.

He said that the Taliban's rise to power is a grave threat to Afghanistan's immediate neighbourhood and beyond. As per some estimates, at least 230 million dollars worth of American inventory alone now is in their hands including weapons, ammunition, vehicles, drones and planes.

A further 19 million dollars worth of equipment allocated to the Afghan police now is in Taliban hands, Dnyanesh Kamat wrote in Asia Times.

According to Kamat, videos circulating on social media have shown the Taliban posing in front of American Black Hawk helicopters and Brazilian-made AN-29 ground attack planes. Apart from this, the former government also had Russian-designed Mi-17 helicopters.

It seems that at least for the more advanced weaponry, such as planes, the Taliban lack the technical know-how in terms of operation or maintenance. Yet this does not preclude the fact that ideologically aligned foreign jihadis possessing such capabilities may offer their services. Or that the Taliban may sell some of the excess inventory to jihadi outfits on the international black market.

This will fuel terrorism in the region and beyond in much the same way that Libya's civil war fueled Islamist terrorism in the Sahel.

The Taliban gain of Afghanistan made jihadi's cyberspace erupt in celebration. Terrorist groups like Hayat Tahrir al-Sham in Syria spoke of the Taliban's victory as an example worth emulating.

Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula praised the Taliban for "emancipating" Afghanistan. Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan, also known as the Pakistani Taliban, has already sworn allegiance to its Afghan counterpart.

As per reports, Lashkar-e-Taiba and Jaish-e-Mohammed terrorists in Kabul. Ayman al-Zawahiri, al-Qaeda's leader since 2011, is said to be living in Afghanistan under Taliban protection.

Zawahiri pledged allegiance to Hibatullah Akhundzada, the Taliban's leader, in 2016. Curiously, the pledge of allegiance was not the other way around - Akhundzada pledging allegiance to the al-Qaeda chief.

The Taliban and al-Qaeda are today not just joined by ideology but also by matrimonial links. In addition, there are 10,000 foreign terrorists in Afghanistan from various countries, including those allied with ISIS, according to Dnyanesh Kamat from Asia Times.

On Thursday, multiple blasts occurred outside Hamid Karzai International Airport, US President Joe Biden said the United States has reason to believe the leaders of the Islamic State-Khorasan terror group are behind the attacks.

Biden said the Islamic State-Khorasan has planned complex attacks against US forces and others in Afghanistan after they were released from prisons during the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan. (ANI)

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