Taliban leader dead

The leader of the Taliban, Mullah Mohammad Omar, has died…from an “illness”…let’s hope it was lead poisoning.

The Taliban on Thursday confirmed the death of their long missing leader, Mullah Mohammad Omar, and said they were pulling out of peace talks with the Afghan government.

“The leadership of the Islamic Emirate and the family of Mullah Omar announce that leader Mullah Omar died due to a sickness,” a statement from the group, using its preferred official name. said.

It denied Pakistan government claims he had died in Karachi, saying he had always stayed in Afghanistan. It called for public mourning.

“The amir al-mumineen (leader of the faithful) was not only a person but a movement, an ideology and a sacred desire,” it said. “As per the decision of the Islamic Emirat, starting from now mourning and prayers for Mullah Omar will take place everywhere in the mosques by religious scholars, tribal and jihadi figures and people for three days.”

Mullah Omar was officially said to be in favour of the talks, so the reports of his death that have circulated over the last two days – whether true or not – are likely to have been a key factor in the decision not to attend. They were due to resume on Friday in Pakistan.   Read more »

Another bad day for bad wogs in Afghanistan

It is starting to look like the US has got their intelligence systems back up and running seamlessly, after the Snowden leaks put a big dent in it.

They are increasingly nailing bad wogs in remote areas and in the past week have tagged Islamic States’ top leader in Afghanistan.

VICE News reports:

Hafiz Saeed, the leader of the so-called Islamic State’s “Khurasan province” in Pakistan and Afghanistan, was killed along with 30 other fighters in an airstrike in Jalalabad province on Friday night, Afghan intelligence confirmed to VICE News.

Saeed’s death was the latest blow inflicted in a string of attacks carried out by Afghan and US-led coalition forces targeting high-profile Islamic State (IS) operatives in the eastern Jalalabad province, where IS has been recruiting fighters since last year. Saeed, who hasbeen erroneously reported as killed in the past, was the highest ranking of three leaders killed this week.

On Monday, a drone strike in the Achin district of Afghanistan’s Nangarhar province killed Gul Zaman, IS’s deputy emir for its Khurasan province. His second in command and five others were also reported killed. (Zaman’s predecessor, Mullah Abdul Rauf Khadim, was killed by a coalition airstrike in February.)   Read more »

Only room for one bunch of crazed Islamists in Afghanistan

The Taliban has told ISIS to piss off out of Afghanistan.

It seems there is only room for one bunch of crazed Islamists in the country.

VICE News reports:

The latest salvo in the battle for extremist allegiance between the Taliban and the Islamic State (IS) arrived today in the form of a strongly worded letter.

In cautioning IS to back off in Afghanistan, the Taliban wrote that if the two militant groups were to become rivals in the country, decades of fighting foreign powers and the Afghan government could be undone.   Read more »

Face of the day

Sqn Ldr Charlotte 'Charlie' Thomson-Edgar (left) previously Staff Officer 1 of the Medical Emergency Response Team in Afghanistan, with a colleague. She has criticised MOD failings in the conduct of the war  Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2973909/RAF-hero-Charlotte-Thompson-Edgar-saved-600-wounded-troops-attacks-shocking-MOD-planning-cost-lives.html#ixzz3TFgNvgOr Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

Sqn Ldr Charlotte ‘Charlie’ Thomson-Edgar (left) previously Staff Officer 1 of the Medical Emergency Response Team in Afghanistan, with a colleague. She has criticised MOD failings in the conduct of the war 

If we are going to send our soldiers into battle it is the very least we can do to provide them with the very best medical support. Squadron Leader Charlotte Thompson-Edgar has highlighted the totally unacceptable way that the British Government under resourced and under prepared the medical teams. I can’t help but compare this shocking situation with the millions of pounds being put into building Mosques in Britain. They build places where Muslims can spread their ideology that is anti democracy, freedom of speech and Infidels while British citizens fighting to protect others rights overseas did not even have blood and plasma available to them on board British helicopters when they were injured.

A senior RAF nurse awarded one of Britain’s highest medals for nursing on the front line has hit out at military leaders, saying they were woefully unprepared for the consequences of fighting in Afghanistan.

Squadron Leader Charlotte Thompson-Edgar spoke movingly about the bravery of the 600 soldiers she brought back from the brink of death after fierce battles against the Taliban.

But at a ceremony last week to mark the latest Operational Honours and Awards for Britain’s Armed Forces, Sqn Ldr Thompson-Edgar – who was awarded the Royal Red Cross 2nd Class – said she believed the Ministry of Defence failed to plan or prepare for the fighting, during which 453 troops lost their lives.
In an interview with the Mail on Sunday the 40-year-old revealed:

  • Senior officers failed to anticipate the scale and severity of casualties the Taliban could inflict;
  • She received no job training;
  • For two years, British helicopters flew without any blood or plasma on board to give to wounded soldiers – a policy that cost them their lives;
  • Overworked medics suffered ‘burnout’ and quit their jobs after working 24-hour shifts for ten days without any rest.
  • From 2007 to 2013, Sqn Ldr Thompson-Edgar, from Peterborough, commanded a medical response unit that flew by helicopter to the battlefield, braving Taliban gunfire, to rescue injured soldiers.

Speaking about her ‘horrific’ experiences in the war zone, she said: ‘There was no training for the job whatsoever and I’d never done any pre-hospital care.


+6 Sqn Ldr Thomson-Edgar (left) working onboard a Chinook helicopter with a colleague on Operation Herrick: the codename under which all British operations in Afghanistan have been conducted. She said she was a ‘complete mess’ on returning to Britain after her first tour

‘I was used to working in a nice emergency room in a safe environment with kit and with everyone on standby.

‘Suddenly I was in a Chinook helicopter, unable to hear myself think, treating guys with horrific injuries and being shot at. I was not prepared to see these injuries but then the military was not expecting to see them either.

‘I pulled 600 patients from the battlefield – about 80 per cent of them had limbs missing or gunshot wounds. Quite a lot died, especially those with gunshot wounds to the head and chest.

‘We also saw guys were dying because they were losing too much blood.’


…However, leading so many missions commanding the Medical Emergency Response Team (MERT) soon took its toll.

Sqn Ldr Thompson-Edgar said: ‘Every time the red phone rang to signal another MERT mission I would think, “Is today going to be the day?”

‘And when I came back to Britain after that first tour, I’ll be honest, I was a complete mess.

‘So I said right, we’ve got to prepare our people better because I hadn’t been prepared and didn’t want somebody else to go through it.’
Once home, she played a key role in setting up a MERT training programme, which used amputees in Britain to act as injured soldiers to help medics train before they were deployed to Afghanistan.

As a result of recommendations from senior medical staff, blood and plasma started to be carried aboard MERT helicopters in 2008.

But as the campaign continued, the Taliban changed their tactics – leading to injuries becoming even more horrific and the experiences of UK medics more traumatic.

She said: ‘Originally they just wanted to hurt as many soldiers as possible in order to dent morale and get the public up in arms.

‘Then they decided that if they maimed somebody really, really badly that’s going to affect people more and affect the minds of the soldiers on the ground.

‘So the blasts got bigger and the amputations started getting higher up the soldiers’ legs. This made our jobs a lot harder, especially when someone was bleeding from the groin because it is very difficult to stop that sort of bleeding.

…She added: ‘The past seven years have been very difficult and I know my family have been concerned.

‘I got through it for a reason – because of the guys on the ground, the soldiers, who deserved the best. 

‘Their bravery was my reason for going back to the war zone so many times.’

To read the article in full

Karl du Fresne on the left’s unwillingness to confront evil

Karl du Fresne calls out the left over their unwillingness to confront evil.

It’s hard to think of a more challenging conundrum than the one posed by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (Isis).

Labour leader Andrew Little was right last week to describe Isis as evil. It’s a word seldom heard these days because it implies a moral judgment, and moral judgments are unfashionable. But “evil” is the only way to describe men who coldly behead their captives, and then amp up the shock factor by burning one alive.

There is an element of gleeful sadism in their barbarism. Last week they pushed a gay man from the top of a tall building – reportedly the fourth such execution for homosexuality.

As with their other atrocities, they posted pictures and video online, a gesture that was part boast, part taunt. In doing so, they were saying to the world: “Look what we’re capable of. There is no limit to what we will do.

“Norms of civilised behaviour don’t apply to us. In fact we hold the civilised world in contempt. You know, and we know, that you are too weak and divided to stop us.”

And these were merely the more flamboyant examples of Isis’ depravity – the ones calculated to get our attention and fill us with fear, horror and anger.

Almost unnoticed in the background, Isis is proceeding with its grand plan to establish an Islamic caliphate, which means systematically slaughtering or enslaving anyone who stands in its way. No-one, then, can dispute that Isis is evil. The conundrum is what the rest of the world should do about it.

I wish there was a pat answer, but Isis presents a unique challenge because it stands apart from all norms of combat or diplomacy.

It has no regard for human lives, including its own members. It acknowledges no rules, it has no interest in negotiation and its adherents – who seem to include a significant number of thugs with criminal records – are said to be happy to die for their cause because it will ensure entry into paradise. How do you fight such an enemy?

Yet doing nothing is not an option. Either we believe civilised values are worth defending and that vulnerable people deserve protection from mass murderers, or we don’t. And if we do, we can’t just whistle nonchalantly while looking the other way and pretending it isn’t happening.

Read more »

Matti Friedman on the Media’s Obsession with Israel

This speech by Matti Friedman, a journalist, explains much about the manipulation by media organisations against Israel.

It is being liberally published and has appeared at Honest Reporting and Quadrant Online.

I doubt it will get published in any mainstream media here, so I will.

Read it and understand how you are being manipulated, particularly over issues concerning Israel. It is quite long but very revealing.

One night several years ago, I came out of Bethlehem after a reporting assignment and crossed through the Israeli military checkpoint between that city and its neighbor, Jerusalem, where I live. With me were perhaps a dozen Palestinian men, mostly in their thirties – my age. No soldiers were visible at the entrance to the checkpoint, a precaution against suicide bombers. We saw only steel and concrete. I followed the other men through a metal detector into a stark corridor and followed instructions barked from a loudspeaker – Remove your belt! Lift up your shirt! The voice belonged to a soldier watching us on a closed-circuit camera. Exiting the checkpoint, adjusting my belt and clothing with the others, I felt like a being less than entirely human and understood, not for the first time, how a feeling like that would provoke someone to violence.

Consumers of news will recognize this scene as belonging to the Israeli occupation of the West Bank, which keeps the 2.5 million Palestinians in that territory under military rule, and has since 1967. The facts of this situation aren’t much in question. This should be an issue of concern to Israelis, whose democracy, military, and society are corroded by the inequality in the West Bank. This, too, isn’t much in question.

The question we must ask, as observers of the world, is why this conflict has come over time to draw more attention than any other, and why it is presented as it is. How have the doings in a country that constitutes 0.01 percent of the world’s surface become the focus of angst, loathing, and condemnation more than any other? We must ask how Israelis and Palestinians have become the stylized symbol of conflict, of strong and weak, the parallel bars upon which the intellectual Olympians of the West perform their tricks – not Turks and Kurds, not Han Chinese and Tibetans, not British soldiers and Iraqi Muslims, not Iraqi Muslims and Iraqi Christians, not Saudi sheikhs and Saudi women, not Indians and Kashmiris, not drug cartel thugs and Mexican villagers.

Questioning why this is the case is in no way an attempt to evade or obscure reality, which is why I opened with the checkpoint leading from Bethlehem. On the contrary – anyone seeking a full understanding of reality can’t avoid this question. My experiences as a journalist provide part of the answer, and also raise pressing questions that go beyond the practice of journalism.

I have been writing from and about Israel for most of the past 20 years, since I moved there from Toronto at age 17. During the five and a half years I spent as part of the international press corps as a reporter for the American news agency The Associated Press, between 2006 and 2011, I gradually began to be aware of certain malfunctions in the coverage of the Israel story – recurring omissions, recurring inflations, decisions made according to considerations that were not journalistic but political, all in the context of a story staffed and reported more than any other international story on earth. When I worked in the AP’s Jerusalem bureau, the Israel story was covered by more AP news staff than China, or India, or all of the fifty-odd countries of sub-Saharan Africa combined.

This is representative of the industry as a whole.       Read more »

Bill Maher: “…when there’s this many bad apples, there’s something wrong with the orchard”

Bill Maher doesn’t hold back.This was his preamble:

Read more »

Taliban scumbag eats some lead

The Islamic hero Taliban leader who planned the attack on the vicious warrior children attending school has been shot dead by Pakistani forces.

Pakistani troops have killed the Taliban leader who planned the massacre of 132 children at a Peshawar school earlier this month, a senior government official claimed.

Saddam Jan, commander of one of the most militant Taliban factions waging war against Pakistan, was killed on Christmas Day in a shoot out with army forces in Khyber agency, a remote tribal area close to the Afghanistan border.

Shahab Ali Shah, a local government official, said Jan “was responsible for facilitating the massacre at the Army Public School and College”.

“He was the mastermind of several attacks carried out throughout the country. We had credible reports that he facilitated the Peshawar school attack,” he said.

He added: “He was killed by security forces in Jamrud Tehsil late on Thursday night.” Another six militants were arrested during the raid.

Analysts said his killing was a major setback to the Tehrik-e-Taliban alliance because Jan was one its few commanders still mounting regular attacks on the country’s government and military.

He was killed in Gundi, Jamrud, as part of an intensification of anti-Taliban operations by the Pakistan Army following the massacre at Peshawar’s Army Public School on December 16th in which 148 were killed, including 132 pupils.

Read more »


Taliban step over the line and Pakistan fights back

In places like Pakistan they don’t do slacktivisim, when they get mad at people, like the Taliban cowards who killed innocent kids and teachers in a school, they get even.

And the Taliban, who once enjoyed safe havens in Pakistan are now being slaughtered…and run out of the country.

Pakistan has finally taken a stand against the terrorists.

The grief has given way to rage. Three days after Pakistan suffered its worst ever terrorist attack, with the massacre of 132 schoolchildren in Peshawar, the country has hit back.

In the tribal areas of North Waziristan and Khyber along the Afghan border, Pakistani jets strafed militant targets as troops combated militants on the ground. The military says that it has killed 77 as the assault presses on. For days, Pakistanis in major cities held candlelit vigils, placing flowers under portraits of the pupils who were killed in their school on Tuesday. Yesterday, they took to the streets to protest against pro-Taliban preachers and declare their resolve to end the threat that the militants pose.

Schools and colleges across the country have been closed until the new year. Major cities were on high alert yesterday amid fears that the Taliban will try and make good on its intention to slaughter more innocents. “We are bracing for another attack,” Khawaja Muhammad Asif, Pakistan’s Defence Minister, told The Independent.

“There are reports that Punjab and other provinces are also threatened by terrorists – particularly soft targets like schools, public places where there is low security.”    Read more »

Faces of the day

Today’s faces of the day are the nine teachers who were killed trying to protect their students in Peshawar. ( Photos taken from Daily Mail.co.uk )

Beenish Pervaiz

Tahira Kazi

Saeed Khan

Afsha Ahmed

Hifsa Khush and four other brave teachers whose names are unknown at this time.

I honour them for their bravery.

I will let their students’ words below, be their memorial.


Beenish Pervaiz (pictured back left with her family), a former student at the University of Greenwich, was reportedly one of the teachers who was slaughtered by gunmen as she tried to help her young pupils

Gunned down and blown up: A photograph reportedly showing five of the teachers (circled) who died in the Pakistan massacre when Taliban gunmen and suicide bombers killed 148 children and staff at the school

Gunned down and blown up: A photograph reportedly showing five of the teachers (circled) who died in the Pakistan massacre when Taliban gunmen and suicide bombers killed 148 children and staff at the school

Tahira Kazi, the principal of the Army Public School and College in Peshawar, died after she was reportedly set on fire by Taliban militants in front of her pupils. She is pictured with a man believed to be her son

Tahira Kazi, the principal of the Army Public School and College in Peshawar, died after she was reportedly set on fire by Taliban militants in front of her pupils. She is pictured with a man believed to be her son

Read more »