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Monday, February 15, 2010

Taliban Second-In-Command Captured, Now What?

Good news. The NY Times is reporting that the second in command of the Afghan Taliban, Mullah Baradar, has been captured in Pakistan.

The capture was undertaken by the Pakistanis with help from the CIA:

Details of the raid remain murky, but officials said that it had been carried out by Pakistan’s military spy agency, the Directorate for Inter-Services Intelligence, or ISI, and that C.I.A. operatives had accompanied the Pakistanis.

The New York Times learned of the operation on Thursday, but delayed reporting it at the request of White House officials, who contended that making it public would end a hugely successful intelligence-gathering effort. The officials said that the group’s leaders had been unaware of Mullah Baradar’s capture and that if it became public they might cover their tracks and become more careful about communicating with each other.

The Times is publishing the news now because White House officials acknowledged that the capture of Mullah Baradar was becoming widely known in the region.

According the The Times' report, Baradar is being interrogated by both Pakistanis and Americans. If that is true, that is more good news.

We'll see how this plays out. But it does raise the question of how far the interrogation will go.

Did the U.S. deliberately not take possession of Baladar so as to avoid the now-thorny issue of Baradar's right to counsel and to remain silent?

And if so, what does that say about our policies regarding people, such as the failed Detroit airplane bomber, who are in our possession?

Update: Mullah Baradar reportedly "was a close associate of Al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden before the September 11, 2001 attacks." If there were a desire to do so, he could have been and still could be treated as others who assisted al-Qaeda prior to 9/11 and who are in custody at Gitmo.

Newsweek ran a lengthy profile of Baradar last July, calling him America's New Nightmare.

Related Posts:
More Rights for Terrorists Mean More Dead Terrorists
Scalia Was Right About Releasing Gitmo Detainees
Which City Would You Sacrifice?

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  1. More and more use of armed predators...
    I'm sure our troops are less likely to try to take a prisoner alive under these rules.
    Why would anyone be surprised at this scenario?

    We've made a mess of it.

  2. Firedog Lake post "It's Extremely Important We Don't Torture Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar." Are they kidding me?


  3. What to you suppose the chances are that the NYT would have sat upon such news for four days at the request of the Bush Administration?

  4. Send him to Gitmo to wait for a NYC trial?

  5. This sorta puts them in a bit of a quandary. I mean, given recent positions taken by the Obama administration, they probably captured him so they can negotiate with him. Sec. Clinton has decided that the Taliban, per se, isn't the enemy. Just the "extreme" ones...

    After all, Clinton's position is that the Taliban itself is our fault, and therefore our responsibility. [ You know, just like the intifada, the PLO, and all terrorism in general is ultimately our fault. ]

    The CIA isn't allowed to interrogate anybody anyway, because they might make a prisoner feel uncomfortable, embarrassed, or otherwise unable to live up to their full potential in life.




  6. Good grief, the Obama admin captures a bad guy and it's STILL not enough.

    You of course forgot to mention in the Times article that this guy is being interrogated by the Pakistanis as well.

  7. JorgXMcKie, not giving Team Obama credit for a win and getting the obligatory dig into the NYT with a phony-baloney hypothetical then going on to act as if it were true.

    Please provide a link where Bush asked the NYT to sit on a story and it did not, thanks!

    It would absolutely kill you right-wingers to say something positive about our present Commander in Chief wouldn't it?

  8. JorgXMcKie, wait I found an article were President Bush asked the NYT to hold off on a story... for 3 YEARS.

    At White House Behest, New York Times Withholds Story
    By cla on October 14, 2009 4:07 PM

    "Newspaper Knew About Pakistani Nuclear Weapons Security Concerns for Three Years"

    "The New York Times reported in a Nov. 18, 2007 story about U.S. efforts to aid Pakistan nuclear arms security that some details of the story had been held for more than three years at the request of the Bush administration."


  9. The New York Times sat on the nsa warrantless wiretap story until after the election. I thought that was pretty accomadating of them.

  10. Sorry, that was accommodating.

  11. Accommodating, accomadating makes no difference JorgXMcKie and those with his mindset will pay no attention to actual facts when they can just make up phony-baloney, make-believe hypotheticals to to which they can all nod silently in agreement with and treat as if it's the truth.

    At 53, I don't have enough years left in my life to wait for JorgXMcKie to admit he's wrong.

  12. 7777, maybe you missed the Pulitzer prizes won for the dumping of Bush-era programs on the population.

    Here's Keller's explanation:

    Back in 2006 the conversations were professional and civil, but in the end when we didn’t agree to hold the story as they wanted us to, it was a kind of firestorm of criticism from the White House aimed at the Times. So far anyway we haven’t had that acrimony with this administration, nor as far as I know have other news organizations.


    Yes, this is good news. It may even lead to the big guys, and God hope an end to hostilities. If only Harry Reid could have been magnanimous about the soon to be successful Iraq.

  13. Let the Paks have him. They'll get him to talk and tell the truth. They know a lot already about the system and the players. He will not be able to lie.

  14. Hmmmmmm? The first things that come to my mind are garbage, scum, trash, worthless, rabid animal, and snake. That's just for starters. Hang this bastard up during high locust season. Make him suffer big. Great job by the military. The white house has nothing to do with tactics. What experience do they have with military strategy? None. Great blog.

  15. Why wasn't he read his Miranda rights and given a lawyer? What will his fellow terrorists think of this deprivation of due process. Isn't Obama ginning up the recruitment of terrorists by his cavalier, dare I say, cowboy mentality, with respect to the capture, confinement and questioning of these freedom fighters? /Michael Moore.