Analysis & Commentary


30th July 2015 - CTV

CTV News

Daveed Gartenstein-Ross

FDD Senior Fellow Daveed Gartenstein-Ross comments on the death of Mullah Omar and its implications.

30th July 2015 - The Daily Beast

Mullah Omar’s Death Is A Big Blow To Al Qaeda—And A Win For ISIS

Thomas Joscelyn

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid has confirmed on his official Twitter account that Mullah Omar is dead. And the Taliban’s political office has apparently conceded that the initial reports, first confirmed by the Afghan government, were accurate: Omar died more than two years ago, in...

30th July 2015 - The Long War Journal

The Taliban Confirms Mullah Omar is Dead

Thomas Joscelyn

The Taliban’s spokesman, Zabihulla Mujahid, released a statement via Twitter earlier today confirming that Mullah Omar, the group’s first emir, is dead. The statement is attributed to Omar’s family and the Taliban’s shura council. A screen shot of one of his tweets concerning...

30th July 2015 - The Long War Journal

Taliban Seize District in Helmand Province

Bill Roggio

The Taliban overran the district center and several military and police installations in Now Zad in the southern Afghan province of Helmand yesterday. The fall of Now Zad is the latest in a series of setbacks for the Afghan security forces and government, which are struggling to maintain...

29th July 2015 - Quoted by Guy Taylor - The Washington Times

Reports of Mullah’s Death Rock Afghan Peace Push

Bill Roggio

Uncertainty swirled Wednesday around new reports that long-secretive Taliban leader Mullah Mohammad Omar has been dead for perhaps as long as two years, as U.S. officials declined to confirm an Afghan government claim and analysts debated how the death might impact Afghan-Taliban peace talks...

29th July 2015 - Quoted by Morgan Chalfant - The Washington Free Beacon

Afghan Officials Say Taliban Leader Mullah Mohammad Omar is Dead, Taliban Denies Report

Thomas Joscelyn

Afghan officials and an individual close to the Taliban claim that the group’s spiritual leader Mullah Mohammad Omar, for whom the United States had issued a $10 million bounty, is dead.

29th July 2015 - Quoted by Shane Harris, Nancy A. Youssef, and Sami Yousafzai - The Daily Beast

Rumors of Mullah Omar’s Death Have Been Greatly Exaggerated Before

Thomas Joscelyn

Rumors surfaced Wednesday morning that Mullah Omar, the notorious one-eyed leader of the Taliban, had died. The BBC first reported news of Omar’s death, citing “top sources within the Afghan administration and intelligence agency.”

28th July 2015 - The Long War Journal

Taliban Overruns Another District in Northern Afghanistan

Bill Roggio

The Taliban continues to press its offensive on multiple fronts in the Afghan north, taking control of Kohistanat district in the once calm province of Sar-i-Pul after a police commander and his officers defected to the jihadist group. According to the Taliban, its forces “raised the white...

26th July 2015 - The Long War Journal

Taliban Overrun Base, Capture and Release 100 Afghan Security Personnel

Bill Roggio

The Taliban overran a military base in the remote northern Afghan province of Badakhshan this weekend, capturing more than 100 police and tribal fighters before disarming and freeing them.

25th July 2015 - The Long War Journal - Co-written by Caleb Weiss

Islamic Jihad Union Details its Involvement in Taliban’s Azm Offensive

Bill Roggio

The Islamic Jihad Union (IJU), an al Qaeda and Taliban-linked terrorist group that operates in Afghanistan and Pakistan, trumpeted its role in the current Taliban-led Azm offensive in Afghanistan as well as its involvement in battling Pakistani troops in North Waziristan.

24th July 2015 - The Long War Journal

US Airstrike Kills One of Osama bin Laden’s Most Trusted Commanders in Afghanistan

Bill Roggio, Thomas Joscelyn

The US killed Abu Khalil al Sudani, a senior al Qaeda leader who took direction from Ayman al Zawahiri, in an airstrike on July 11 in eastern Afghanistan. The strike took place in the Bermal district of the Paktia province, where the US operated a base before withdrawing the bulk of its...

18th July 2015 - The Long War Journal - Co-written by Caleb Weiss

Taliban Parades in Northern Helmand

Bill Roggio

The Afghan Taliban overran an Afghan military base and paraded its troops through the bazaar in Kajaki in northern Helmand province, the jihadist group claimed.

15th July 2015 - The Long War Journal

Mullah Omar Takes Aim at the Islamic State in Thinly-Veiled Message

Thomas Joscelyn

In a newly-released statement, Taliban emir Mullah Omar argues that the jihadists’ gains in Afghanistan won’t be squandered due to infighting as they were in the past. Although Omar doesn’t address the Islamic State directly, Abu Bakr al Baghdadi’s “caliphate” is clearly on the...

14th July 2015 - The Long War Journal

Pakistani Taliban Confirms Death of Khorasan Province Spokesman

Bill Roggio

The spokesman for a faction of the Movement of the Taliban in Pakistan confirmed the death of his counterpart for the Islamic State’s Khorasan province, vowed to avenge his death, and called for the Islamic State and the Afghan Taliban to reconcile.

13th July 2015 - The Long War Journal

Islamic State Says Emir for Khorasan Province is Alive

Bill Roggio

A former detainee at Guantanamo Bay who was one of the first jihadists to defect to the Islamic State in the Afghan-Pakistan region has denied reports that the group’s emir for its Khorasan province was killed last week in a US airstrike.

12th July 2015 - The Canberra Times

Iran’s Very Active Posture Against IS in Iraq Finds No Match in Syria

Emanuele Ottolenghi, Saeed Ghasseminejad

Since her return from Tehran in April, Foreign Minister Julie Bishop has argued that Iran can be a reliable partner in the fight against Islamic State in Syria and Iraq. At the Paris talks this month she called for Iran to be included in the coalition fighting IS.

11th July 2015 - The Long War Journal

Afghan Intelligence Claims US Killed Islamic State’s Emir for Khorasan Province

Bill Roggio

Afghanistan’s National Directorate of Security (NDS) claimed that the United States killed the Islamic State’s leader for its Khorasan province in an airstrike yesterday in eastern Afghanistan. If his death and the deputy emir’s death, which was reported earlier this week, are...

9th July 2015 - The Long War Journal

Islamic State’s Spokesman for Khorasan Province Thought Killed in US Airstrike

Bill Roggio

Afghanistan’s National Directorate of Security (NDS) claimed that the US killed the Islamic State’s spokesman for its Khorasan province in a recent airstrike in eastern Afghanistan. The NDS also claimed that the US killed the deputy emir for Khorasan province earlier this week.

9th July 2015 - Quoted by Sudarsan Raghavan and Tim Craig - The Washington Post

Suspected U.S. Drone Strikes Kill Key Islamic State Figures in Afghanistan

A key leader of the Islamic State and another top commander were killed in recent U.S drone strikes in eastern ­Afghanistan, according to intelligence officials here, the latest sign that the radical Islamist group is considered a growing threat in the country.

8th July 2015 - The Long War Journal

Deputy Emir of Islamic State’s Khorasan Province Reported Killed in US Drone Strike

Bill Roggio

The US killed the Islamic State’s deputy emir for its Khorasan province in a drone strike on July 6 in eastern Afghanistan, according to Afghanistan’s National Directorate of Security. If confirmed, the US has killed two deputy emirs of the Khorasan province since February.

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