LongWarJournal: The Taliban recently said that the US drone strike that killed its last emir, along with other targeted killings and detentions of its leaders, would not weaken its resolve. Rather, it is the Taliban’s “religious obligation” to continue fighting despite such losses. The Taliban stated that the West has been mired in Afghanistan for 15 years because it has “failed to understand the psychology” of the jihadist group.
That statement was published on Voice of Jihad’s English language website on June 13. Voice of Jihad’s English language section was offline for three weeks and was restored on June 12. The Taliban have been slowly restoring content to the website.
The Taliban issued the statement in response to calls by President Barack Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry for the group to enter in negotiations with the Afghan government lest the US continue to target more leaders. The US killed Taliban emir Mullah Mansour in a drone strike in Baluchistan, Pakistan on May 21 as he was traveling from Iran. The strike was the first of its kind in the Taliban stronghold of Baluchistan.
“The Taliban consider the ongoing struggle against the foreign occupation as a religious obligation (Jihad) and are willing to face all kinds of hardship to accomplish this,” the Taliban responded to threats of further attacks on its top leaders. “They consider any hardship in this struggle including being tortured, injured, imprisoned or dying as means towards gaining their Lord’s pleasure. Death in this struggle amounts to martyrdom in their eyes.” more