Daniel R. DePetris: The Political Docket

What the CIA Bombing Really Means for the U.S. in “Af-Pak”

Posted in Afghanistan/Pakistan/Central Asia by Dan on January 10, 2010

Double-Trouble for the U.S.; 7 CIA agents killed and the Afghan mission compromised

As political pundits, scholars, policymakers, and media contributors are continuing their massive coverage on the “underpants bomber” (myself included), there is another terrorist attack that everyone should be aware of…this time in Afghanistan.

On December 30th, just outside CIA headquarters in Khost Province (in Southern Afghanistan), a suicide-bomber identified as Humam Khalil Abu-Mulal al-Balawi detonated his explosives and killed eight Americans in the process.  Seven of these Americans were CIA agents responsible for the controversial drone-program over Pakistan’s tribal areas; not exactly a morale booster for the U.S. operations in a deteriorating Afghan war.

Non-withstanding the extreme sadness and anger that is currently seeping through the Central Intelligence Agency, the recent attack demonstrates a much wider problem; Islamic militant groups are teaming up like never before.

If there is anything to be said about this horrible incident, it is the fact that different militant groups with very different agendas will unite in the face of a common enemy.

I am sure everyone on this forum already heard about this development, but the Pakistani Taliban have claimed credit for the Dec. 30 bombing through a newly-released video presentation.  The tape suggests that the killing of 7 CIA officers by Balawi was a direct response to the CIA drone-program in Pakistan that has killed so many top Al’Qaeda figureheads.  At least the U.S. knows that the drone-program is working, or at least getting on the nerves of the Pakistani Taliban.

But this is besides the point.  The real question here is who was involved.  Unfortunately for the U.S. Military and the CIA, no one group perpetuated the attack on its own.  It appears that the Pakistani Taliban supported the suicide-operation by providing logistics, and Al’Qaeda contributed fighters who were willing to conduct the attack.  The Afghan Taliban- and the Haqqani network- have also claimed responsibility, given that the killing occurred in Afghanistan.

Details are sketchy at this point.  But if one thing is clear, it is the fact that a number of militant organizations are working together to kill as many U.S. agents as possible.  This is especially dangerous for the U.S. mission in Afghanistan, given the military’s expectation of an extra 30,000 troops to the fight over the summer.

Just when we thought that lone-wolf terrorists were the greatest threat to the west, traditional terrorist networks strike again with violence that is coordinated, ruthless and effective.

Daniel R. DePetris

Follow me at http://www.twitter.com/mideastblogger

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6 Responses

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  1. audiq7 said, on January 11, 2010 at 3:24 am

    KABUL: In a video broadcast after his death, the Jordanian suicide bomber who killed seven CIA employees sits cross-legged on the floor next to the new chief of the Pakistani Taliban, confirming the group was behind the brazen attack in eastern Afghanistan.

    http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/south-asia/Video-links-Pakistan-Taliban-to-CIA-employees-killing-/articleshow/5429483.cms

    http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/south-asia/Musharraf-had-met-ULFA-leader-Chetia-in-Dhaka-Bangla-Minister/articleshow/5427537.cms

    “Pervez Musharraf came to Dhaka… when the ULFA leader was detained in the (Dhaka Central) jail, from where he was brought to the Sheraton Hotel” for a meeting with the President, local government minister Ashraful Islam said.

  2. BOFORCE said, on January 11, 2010 at 3:24 am

    This was the classic example of the Revenge of a pawn…Pakistani talibans were the American Pawns till the American killed Baitullah Mehsud…pawns are expandable when they become useless liability….the jordnian informant somehow knew that his fate would be the same as of Baitullah Mehsud…so he planned to strike before the CIA exterminate him….this incident provides good plot for a Hollywood spy movie..lets make some money…”Backfired to hell” i guess that should be the name of the movie….LOL

  3. RedNeckVille said, on January 11, 2010 at 8:46 pm

    This is the Thread where the WingDings forget they had said in 2004 that Afghanistan was already Won by the Bush Administration!

  4. Tosser said, on January 11, 2010 at 8:48 pm

    Somehow, the US is playing the game in a way that makes anything good for Pakistan, to be bad for the US troops in Afghanistan and anything good for the US in Afghanistan, to be bad for Pakistan.

    We gave more than enough warning to the Americans, that we are going to clear Waziristan from these scum. We are going to raise the temperature so that they die, or surrender or escape back into Afghanistan where they came from.

    All three happened.

    The Pak Govt. requested the US to stand alert for border-crossers.

    The US failed to cooperate and coordinate.

    And then one of these guys ends up killing CIA… who are also scum. LOL

    The problem with Americans is that generally, they think they know everything and never listen.

    When they fall into a ditch, it’s nobody’s fault but their own.

  5. Tosser said, on January 11, 2010 at 8:49 pm

    What it means is, what I had posted about much earlier, but which went over the heads of most people. (you can look up my previous posts)

    I had said, that when Pakistan started killing and attacking the TTP in S.Waziristan, after clearing up Swat and surrounding areas, many of the “taliban” will go across the border and hide out in Afghanistan.

    The action by the Pak-army has been a big success. The Americans were WARNED by the Pak-army to stand guard on their side of the border and watch out for the people we were going to push across.

    Instead, the US… under the super-incompetent Gen.McChrystal, ABANDONED it’s positions on the border, ALLOWING all these people to cross over into Afghanistan. LOL

    I said, you will be sorry, you did that.

    Now here you are.

    There is not a chance in Hell that a person as stupid as Obama and his Gen.McChrystal will have any hope of victory in Afghanistan.

  6. WP Themes said, on February 1, 2010 at 10:59 am

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