The terror network that helped bring death to America on 9/11 is claiming that the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan is a victory, according to a new report.
A Friday report by CNN claims that “two al Qaeda operatives” whose names are not used gave CNN an exclusive interview “conducted through intermediaries.”
In the interview, released by CNN to coincide with the 10th anniversary of the death of 9/11 mastermind Osama bin Laden, the al-Qaida operatives said that the “war against the US will be continuing on all other fronts unless they are expelled from the rest of the Islamic world.”
“The Americans are now defeated,” the operatives told CNN.
“The US war in Afghanistan played key role in hitting US economy.”
President Joe Biden has announced that U.S. troops will be pulled back from Afghanistan before Sept. 11.
Secretary of State Antony Blinken explained the rationale earlier this month in an ABC “This Week” interview, according to CNN.
“We went to Afghanistan 20 years ago, and we went because we were attacked on 9/11, and we went to take on those who had attacked us on 9/11, and to make sure that Afghanistan would not again become a haven for terrorism directed at the United States or any of our allies and partners,” Blinken said. “And we achieved the objectives that we set out to achieve.”
Although the withdrawal is, in part, predicated upon actions by the Taliban that disavowed any links to al-Qaida, one comment from the interview indicated that may not be the reality on the ground.
“At the same time TTP [Pakistani Taliban] and AQ have relations of Islamic brotherhood which was and still intact and same is the case with the Afghan Taliban,” the al-Qaida figures said.
Peter Bergen, a CNN terrorism expert, noted the significance of that comment.
“This confirms what the UN has been saying that, ‘the Taliban regularly consulted’ with al Qaeda during its negotiations with the United States while guaranteeing that they ‘would honor their historical ties’ with the terrorist group,” he said.
The al-Qaida comments implied that the group is regaining its strength.
“Now the organization of Pakistani Taliban and their leadership not only moving forward in the light of Sharia but also making better decisions based on past experiences and recent successes have been made possible by the same unity and adherence to Sharia and Wisdom,” the al-Qaida operatives said.
“The United States is not a problem for our Afghan brothers, but due to the sacrifices in the Afghan war, the Americans are now defeated. Whether Republicans or Democrats — both have made final decision to pull out from the Afghan war.”
In the interview, the al-Qaida operatives indicated Afghanistan has sheltered terrorists.
“Thanks to Afghans for the protection of comrades-in-arms, many such jihadi fronts have been successfully operating in different parts of the Islamic world for a long time,” CNN was told.
Terrorism analyst Paul Cruickshank said al-Qaida may “feel buoyed by the Biden administration’s decision to pull out troops from Afghanistan, but they may also be seeking to deflect attention from the many recent losses.”
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