Analysis & Commentary

28th June 2016 - The Long War Journal

Hekmatyar withdraws from peace talks with Afghan government

Bill Roggio

The leader of Hezb-i-Islami Gulbuddin (HIG), a faction that fuels Afghanistan’s insurgency, has withdrawn from peace talks after raising the hopes of the Afghan government that an agreement was near. Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, HIG’s leader, has toyed with the Afghan government in the past....

24th June 2016 - Quoted by Ken Dilanian, Courtney Kube - NBC News

Officials: U.S. Report Will Say Drones Have Only Killed 100 Civilians

The Obama administration is preparing to announce as early as next week that it believes around 100 civilians have died in nearly 500 U.S. drone strikes since 2009, U.S. officials tell NBC News.

14th June 2016 - The Long War Journal

Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan faction emerges after group’s collapse

Bill Roggio

A new faction of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU) independent of the Islamic State has emerged and indicated that it remains loyal to the Taliban, al Qaeda, and other traditional jihadist group that operate in Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Central Asia.

7th June 2016 - Quoted by Michael Kugelman - War On The Rocks

Why Did Washington Wait So Long To Take Its Drone War To Baluchistan

The Hellfire missile that incinerated Afghan Taliban leader Mullah Mansour on May 21 set a major new precedent: It marked the first time we know of that a U.S. drone strike was used in the Pakistani province of Baluchistan.

6th June 2016 - Quoted by Hannah Bloch - NPR

Taliban Get A New Leader, Who’s Just As Violent As The Old One

Bill Roggio

The U.S. has backed a reconciliation process — brokered by Pakistan, in which China and the U.S. are observers — that's aimed at fostering direct peace talks between the Afghan government and the Taliban. Those talks seem increasingly unlikely now.

6th June 2016 - The Long War Journal

State notes ‘severely degraded’ al Qaeda operated large training camp in Afghanistan

Bill Roggio

The US government continues to underestimate al Qaeda’s strength in Afghanistan and Pakistan.

5th June 2016 - Quoted by Rowan Scarborough - The Washington Times

Pentagon brags of killing terrorists even as released Gitmo detainees return to battlefield

Thomas Joscelyn

The Pentagon is boasting of the al Qaeda operatives it has killed to make America safer, yet the same type of terrorists have been transferred out of the Guantanamo prison to countries with a poor history of security, and some have ended up back on the battlefield.

3rd June 2016 - The Long War Journal

‘Pakistan did not take substantial action against the Afghan Taliban’ or Haqqani Network

Bill Roggio

The Department of State noted Pakistan’s unwillingness to deal with its preferred jihadist groups in the newly released Country Reports on Terrorism 2015.

1st June 2016 - Quoted by Aru Pande - Voice of America

US Drone Strike in Pakistan Renews Calls for Transparency

John Hannah

For the first time, a U.S. drone struck Pakistan outside its lawless border area with Afghanistan, killing the leader of the Afghan Taliban in the country’s southwestern province of Baluchistan.

26th May 2016 - The Long War Journal

US lists 2 Pakistani jihadist groups as global terror organizations

Bill Roggio, Thomas Joscelyn

Both Jamaat ul Dawa al Quran (JDQ) and the Tariq Gidar Group (TGG) have now been sanctioned, meaning Americans “are generally prohibited from engaging in any transactions with” the jihadist organizations.

25th May 2016 - Quoted by Ankit Panda - The Diplomat

Taliban Announce New Leader After Mullah Mansour’s Death

Bill Roggio

Four days after the United States announced it had killed Mullah Akhtar Mohammad Mansour, the leader of the Taliban, the group has announced a new leader.

25th May 2016 - The Long War Journal

Taliban name Mullah Haibatullah as new emir

Bill Roggio

The Afghan Taliban appointed Mullah Haibatullah Akhundzada, the group’s top judicial officer, as its new emir after confirming Mullah Mansour was killed by the US. Siraj Haqqani, the Taliban’s military commander, remains one of the Taliban’s top two deputies, and Mullah Mohammad...

25th May 2016 - The Long War Journal

Baluchistan province is a primary hub for Afghan Taliban

Bill Roggio

The American airstrike in Baluchistan, Pakistan that targeted and killed Taliban emir Mullah Mansour was unprecedented as the US military and CIA have not launched an attack in the province since the drone program began in 2004.

24th May 2016 - Sirius XM Canada

The Arlene Bynon Show

Bill Roggio

FDD senior fellow Bill Roggio discusses the future of the Taliban and drone strike that killed Mullah Mansour in Pakistan.

23rd May 2016 - The Long War Journal

US confirms Mansour killed, vows no change in combat strategy

Bill Roggio

The White House confirmed the death of Taliban emir Mullah Mansour today, two days after the US said it targeted the group’s leader in an unprecedented airstrike in southwestern Pakistan’s Baluchistan province.

23rd May 2016 - Quoted by Mushtaq Yusufzai, Fazul Rahim, and Jon Schuppe - NBC News

Who Will Lead Taliban Next? Four Contenders Emerge

Bill Roggio

As the Taliban collected the body of its slain leader on Monday, the insurgent group also began discussing his replacement, insiders say — a choice that could spark furious infighting and signal whether there's any chance of a negotiated peace in Afghanistan.

23rd May 2016 - Quoted by Kathy Gilsinan - The Atlantic

The Drone War Crosses Another Line

Bill Roggio

Following the death of Taliban leader Mullah Akhtar Muhammad Mansour in an American drone strike in Pakistan on Saturday, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry remarked that “Peace is what we want” in Afghanistan.

22nd May 2016 - Quoted by Missy Ryan, Tim Craig - The Washington Post

U.S. strikes top Taliban leader in Pakistan

The U.S. military launched a drone strike against Taliban leader Akhtar Mohammad Mansour on Saturday, the Pentagon said, dealing a potential blow to the group whose insurgent assaults pose a major obstacle to U.S. hopes for ending the war in Afghanistan.

21st May 2016 - Fox News

America’s News HQ

Mark Dubowitz

FDD Executive Director Mark Dubowitz weighs in on status of Taliban after alleged death of leader.

10th May 2016 - The Long War Journal

US, Afghan forces rescue son of former Pakistani prime minister from ‘al Qaeda cell’

Bill Roggio, Thomas Joscelyn

Siraj Haqqani, the group’s operational leader, serves as one of the Taliban’s two deputy emirs is also a member of al Qaeda’s executive council. The Taliban and Haqqani Network are known to shelter al Qaeda’s men and they conduct joint operations with the group inside of Afghanistan....


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