While the United States and the State Department push for negotiations to continue between the Taliban and the Afghan government, we learn the Taliban and al-Qaida may still have a common goal in mind even though their operational planning may differ in approach.
As we heard about one year ago after the raid on bin Laden’s compound in Pakistan, special forces from the United States had the time to collect hard drives, jump drives and dead-tree paper documents from the house. Although bin Laden was probably not involved with day-to-day al-Qaida operations and the Taliban commander Mullah Omar is in deep hiding, documents show an operational relationship exists.
Omar of course, was the head of Afghanistan when bin Laden had free reign to plan and train al-Qaida terrorists in the country. It’s assumed he’s been on the run and hiding along the Pakistan border since late 2001.
The Obama administration feels the Taliban must be involved with the future Afghan government to ensure peace, but they seem willing to ignore their history of corruption and hate. From the UK Guardian… (wondering if the US media will look into this).
Documents found in the house where Osama bin Laden was killed a year ago show a close working relationship between top al-Qaida leaders and Mullah Omar, the overall commander of the Taliban, including frequent discussions of joint operations against Nato forces in Afghanistan, the Afghan government and targets in Pakistan.
The communications show a three-way conversation between Bin Laden, his then deputy Ayman Zawahiri and Omar, who is believed to have been in Pakistan since fleeing Afghanistan after the collapse of his regime in 2001.
They indicate a “very considerable degree of ideological convergence”, a Washington-based source familiar with the documents told the Guardian.
How fresh are the communications? Is this really old stuff that does not matter anymore?
Some communications in the documents date back several years but others are said to be from only weeks before the raid on 2 May last year in which Bin Laden died.
We do have to ask if Omar – even though he is in hiding – is still involved with politics and operations of the Taliban in Afghanistan. If he is totally cut off, the Obama administration and others involved with securing peace in the country seem to be betting those who are representing themselves as Taliban leadership do not share Omar’s philosophy and that they have “moderated.” As a complete novice in all of this, I’m not getting a warm and fuzzy feeling.