Taliban Marks 9/11 Anniversary With Defiance, Rocket Attacks

Patrick Goodenough | September 11, 2019 | 4:29am EDT
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Taliban fighters in Jalalabad during an Eid ceasefire in June 2018. (Photo by Noorullah Shirzada/AFP/Getty Images)

(CNSNews.com) – With defiant statements directed at President Trump and the Afghan government, the Taliban marked the 18th anniversary of 9/11 by claiming to have fired missiles at the U.S. Embassy in Kabul and the U.S. Air Force Base at Bagram.

The terrorist group said in a statement its “mujahideen” had fired missiles at the U.S. Embassy in the Afghan capital shortly after midnight, and launched a similar attack at Bagram, some 30 miles north of Kabul, a base it described as the “largest nest of American invaders in the country.”

It claimed that according to its sources “the enemy suffered casualties in both attacks,” but said it was awaiting further information.

“The occupiers have suffered heavy casualties and financial losses [at Bagram],” Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujadid tweeted separately.

According to the Associated Press, a rocket landed at the U.S. Embassy in the Afghan capital minutes after midnight, but officials “declared all-clear about an hour later and reported no injuries.”

Queries sent to U.S. forces in Afghanistan about the Bagram claim brought no response by press time.

Earlier on Tuesday evening, Afghanistan’s Interior Ministry reported that a rocket had landed near the compound of the Defense Ministry in Kabul, causing no casualties. The ministry is situated about a mile from the U.S. Embassy.

The attacks come as America marks the anniversary of al-Qaeda’s terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001. The U.S. invaded less than a month later to topple the Taliban regime which had provided its al-Qaeda allies a safe haven in its “emirate.”

In the almost 18 years since then, 2,434 U.S. personnel have been killed in the conflict, 1,909 of them in combat, according to a tally of official data.

Over the past year, Trump has sought to end America’s longest war but the Taliban continued to carry out deadly attacks even as their representatives held talks with U.S. officials in Qatar.

With a negotiated deal apparently imminent Trump declared the talks “dead” early this week, after a Taliban bombing last Thursday cost the life of another U.S. soldier, the 16th soldier or Marine to die in combat this year.

The Taliban pledged to continue its “jihad” and marked the 9/11 anniversary with several more defiant statements posted on various official websites.

In one, on an English-language media site, the group said Trump had exposed his “evil satanic agenda” of prolonging the war, but said the Americans should understand that the war will continue, “even if it takes another 18 years” and even if a single U.S. soldier remains in Afghanistan.

Turning to those Afghan government officials who had praised Trump’s decision to call off the talks, the Taliban derided them as nothing more than “CIA clients, mercenaries and corrupt warlords.”

“The cheerleaders of Donald Trump in Kabul are political tourists who don’t see a future for themselves in Afghanistan after the withdrawal of foreign forces and this is what makes them worry and why they seem so happy that peace talks are cancelled,” it said.

On another official website, the group posted an article taking issue with Trump’s remarks, during an Oval Office meeting with Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan in July, to the effect that the U.S. could end the war within a week, but that he did not want to kill ten million people and wipe Afghanistan “off the face of the Earth.”

Calling Trump “mindless” and “conceited,” the writer declared that Afghanistan is a land of “lions” and “brave martyrs,” and expressed confidence that “Allah is stronger than you or your army.”

“You face men who love to die in the fight against you more than life, men whose parents have been killed in defense of their religion, homeland, honor and dignity,” the article stated.

“Victory in Afghanistan is a dream that you will carry to your grave, Allah willing, as the more aggressive and ruthless former invaders carried it to their graves, from the English to the Russians.”


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