March 8th, 2010
07:00 AM ET

About 50 dead as rebel groups fight each other

KABUL, Afghanistan - About 50 insurgents, including more than a dozen Taliban, have been killed in fighting between two rebel groups in Afghanistan, Baghlan province governor Mohammed Akbar Barikzai said Sunday. Some 35 fighters of the Hezb-e-Eslami, or Islamic Party, and 13 Taliban died the fighting, which began Saturday and continued into Sunday, he told CNN.

Some bystanders also seem to have been killed or wounded, Barikzai said, adding he could not put an exact number on the civilian casualties.

Hezb-e-Eslami is an insurgent group loyal to warlord Gulbeddin Hekmatyar. They are enemies of the Taliban but it is rare that the anti-government groups fight each other.

A group of 25 Hezb-e-Eslami fighters including their commander surrendered to Afghan National Police on Sunday, the governor said.

Provincial chief of police Mohammed Kaber Andarabi confirmed that the fighting was ongoing, but that some of the Hezb-e-Eslami commanders are surrendering to the police.

Separately, two children were killed and two were hurt in an explosion while they were playing in Kandahar province, provincial spokesman Zalmay Ayoubi said Sunday.

The explosive device was in a bag in sixth district of Kandahar and blew up while the children were playing, the Interior ministry said in a press release. The injured children were transferred to a hospital for treatment.

soundoff (25 Responses)
  1. LannieC

    Considering the area, this is more of one drug cartel fighting with another drug cartel, much like what is going on in Mexico. The Taliban are nothing more than a hugh drug cartel hiding behind religion. If they loose this region, they loose billons of dollars. It was a sad thing that the Military gave them two weeks notice that we were coming in there. That allowed them to grab their drugs and high tail it out. Wonder who got paid off for the warning?? In a week or so, they will harvest their poppy crop, what then? Will the US allow them to keep it? Will be interesting to see what happens. As for Dan,kiss my military arse!

    March 10, 2010 at 9:45 am | Report abuse |
  2. Blue

    Using the name "Hezb-e Eslami" is misleading. We refer to it here as HiG (Hizb-e Islami Gulbuddin). Gulbudding used to belong to a party which still exists called HiK (Hizb-e Islami Kulis). HiK considered Gulbuddin too violent, and so he split away from the HiK and formed HiG. HiG is fairly popular in the eastern portion of Afghanistan, often out-numbering the Taliban. Fighting between the two groups is not unheard of, but they have also been know to set aside their differences and fight together.

    There are many political parties in Afghanistan, over-simplifying the names is misleading and inaccurate, further hindering the ability of people at home to understand the intricacies when they are portrayed. Help them to understand these little differences rather than trying to dumb them down. As Daniel so ably demonstrates, there need to be more facts shared so that imaginations won't be tempted to run quite so wild.

    March 10, 2010 at 7:07 am | Report abuse |
  3. Greg

    This article should be a suprise for no one.

    The Taliban and Hekmatyr's Mujahidin fighters battled for Kabul in 1990's. They weren't just yelling and making faces; they were using heavy artillary, rockets, mortars, and they each killed thousands of the other side. Yes, they are all Pashtu, but they are from two different Pashtu tribes and hate other.

    What this article should instead focus on is that these two groups were able to battle for two days, without a ISAF response. To me that indicates the "surge" was too small. Yes, the Afghans eventually arrested some Muj, but the fighting is still ongoing.

    In my opinion, the only reason the Muj surrendered is because they are outmatched by the better equiped and better funded Taliban, now that the Pakistani ISI has undoubtably stopped supporting Hekmatyr's Muj to the extent it did previously.

    March 9, 2010 at 9:15 pm | Report abuse |
  4. emb021761

    Let them fight it out. Maybe it will save some of our guy's lives.

    March 9, 2010 at 8:55 pm | Report abuse |
  5. GrowmanJay

    Islam is Unified...Yeah right,they're still having tribal wars,and they are killing amongst themselves,Lets let them die,because only wicked men handle guns.Including our own soldiers.Sorry but my opinion is,what it is.Any man who carries a gun is a wicked man.No matter what the situation.So let all the wicked men die,so the peaceful men may prosper.

    March 9, 2010 at 6:23 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Mo

    Daniel, im born in Afghanistan and maeka leaving in the West, so please dont tell me that we dont need other contries helping my country. Because of a bunch of crazy people with guns i have many many relatives and neighbours die. So please dont talk if you dont know. People liek you should be leaving there and have a guys coem in your house and take your kids to train them to kill themselves in the name of GOD. You go play your video games now and eat your pop corn cause you dont understand what is going on there.

    March 9, 2010 at 5:56 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Bestill

    I think all the infighting is a direct result of the multiple recent arrests of Taliban leaders. Somebody is selling them down the river for money and they don't trust each other. This is the best of all scenarios. Let them kill each other off. GREAT STRATEGY!

    March 9, 2010 at 5:53 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Snowyman28

    Mr. Venner, I wholeheartedly agree with you. I just came back home from Afghanistan last month where I was in Kabul serving side by side with your countrymen. I have to say I very much admired the enthusiasm and professionalism they displayed for the mission we were all undertaking. To Daniel and those that harbor opinions like his, I'm glad you have your opinion and I'm glad you disagree with most of us on here. What I am happiest about, though, is that I could be part of the force guaranteeing you the right to have dissenting opinions and the ability to voice them.

    March 9, 2010 at 2:18 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Nancy

    Daniel,
    Anytime there is a crisis in the World the USA is there to help. I'm sure the people of Haiti are very grateful. I didn't notice any of your Talian buddies helping out.
    You keep advertising how much you hate the West but what's keeping you here?

    March 9, 2010 at 11:23 am | Report abuse |
  10. jon

    This is how to manifest the peacefulness of Islam. With The US planning to pull out, they have a new enemy in the way of pure peacefulness, themselves. And so they are probably just killing each other so there will be less fighting, and less to fight over, when the time comes. Eventually everything will be peaceful for the Muslims as they revive their old trdadition of banding in machete-wielding hoards slaughter Christians and Jews and random people who are Muslim but not the exact same type. Perhaps they will achieve not just peace, but religious ecstacy, and orgasms as during the slaughter they will probably rape the women as is another Islamic tradition (not written, but practiced)...

    March 9, 2010 at 11:20 am | Report abuse |
  11. Dan-no relation to the other Dan

    Dan,

    I must thank you for once again underscoring the ignorance of extremist positions, right or left. Rather than engage in a considered discourse you revert to type and spout your childish nonsense. In your case, I would invoke the old adage, with a slight twist, "if you don't have anything to say that is based on informed opinion it is better to not say anything at all" Jim, count me in on buying Dan a ticket!

    March 9, 2010 at 10:51 am | Report abuse |
  12. Henry in WV

    Hezb-e-Eslami and the Taliban do not represent Islam any more than the Tea Baggers and the Christian Right represent Christianity. It is probably a good thing that they are taking out their frustrations on each other rather than the NATO troops in Afghanistan.

    March 9, 2010 at 10:22 am | Report abuse |
  13. Freddie

    Johan Venner, thank you. However people like Daniel are what we call trolls. They say obviously disturbing things because in their twisted boring dull lives of being spoon fed the only amuesment they get anymore is watching normal people like you and myself John looking at them puzzled as if they were doing something so magical that we cant understand. I think a little time working on the side of a road doing real labor or some time with a weapon in thier hand being shot at by Taliban while you fight to keep you and your buddies alive just one more day might do him some good. Daniel thank you for your input. Try something more constructive or pick a weapon and stand a post. If you just want to complain offer solutions or be a part of the fix. Johan, thank and your country men for being trusted and valued allies. Like most educated Americans, we do know we cant nearly do this alone, and NATO bears a heavy weight and allies like you Johan make this world better for us all.

    March 9, 2010 at 10:18 am | Report abuse |
  14. Sean

    Daniel, too bad you are too ignorant to realize that AQ and other militant groups kill more muslims than coalition forces ever have in either Iraq or Afghanistan. It is a sad day for Islam indeed.

    March 9, 2010 at 9:17 am | Report abuse |
  15. Jim

    Daniel – why don't you go to Afganistan and join your brethen. Maybe you can help blow up a few children or destroy cultural icons. Heck, I'll even pay for your ticket.

    March 9, 2010 at 9:13 am | Report abuse |
  16. jim

    This is only inevitible, as they fought together, they are now fighting each other for the scraps as it were, the taliban knows that they are on thier last leg, and as such, is the same thing when you have people in a sinking boat, first off they will work together, but as the boat gets closer to the water, they start panicking and fighting amongst themselves. The sad thing is that they dont realize it and will be infighting when they could give up, and go on to live a normal life. But i am glad on the other hand to see them infighting in that they are killing themselves, as usual couple innocent bystanders get killed also, just like gangs fighting, and eventually they will kill each other off and we will be rid of them.

    March 9, 2010 at 8:09 am | Report abuse |
  17. EarnĂ¡n

    Sucks to be on the losing side of history, doesn't it, Danny?

    Your excuses and apologies for Islamist fascists aren't fooling anyone. They don't, however, fail to sicken anyone who has witnessed how Islamists like the Taliban, al Qaeda and the Salafist terrorists of Algeria treat anyone who dissents or fails to toe the mullahs' line.

    Shame on you.

    March 9, 2010 at 8:09 am | Report abuse |
  18. DoubleW

    Daniel, obviously you have forgotten that Afghanistan is a tribal culture, with the rural areas and the various tribes and sects mainly ruled by corrupt and opportunistic warlords. Naturally the various groups are going to fight over power and local influence. Add drug profits to the mix, and it's a wonder we haven't seen more internecine battles.

    March 9, 2010 at 1:43 am | Report abuse |
  19. dogpatch

    "inappropriate"! How about evil piece of criminal garbage?

    March 8, 2010 at 11:04 pm | Report abuse |
  20. nathan

    thank you Johan, from an american who supports all of the nato forces spreading freedom
    around the world. Only the free can voice their opinion without fear.

    March 8, 2010 at 10:12 pm | Report abuse |
  21. Been there done that

    Daniel is not too bright. The left is in control of this now. Yes we support our friends and family in Afghanistan. Some people just have so much hate in themselves it spews out into utter nonsense as Daniel has shown.

    March 8, 2010 at 9:49 pm | Report abuse |
  22. Daniel

    For Johan Venner,I respect your right to your opinion,but due to simple moral principles,I cannot agree with you on this.I feel that it's simply wrong to support the sinister scheme of the United States,Great Bitain and France to take control of the Middle East.

    March 8, 2010 at 9:33 pm | Report abuse |
  23. Nathan Akridge

    Thank you Mr. Venner!! I salute you sir!! And to you Daniel, I only say this: No one in Afghanistan, whether they are Coalition Forces or locals, are having a field day. As a U.S. Soldier who has served in both Afghanistan and Iraq, I look forward to the day when peace finally comes to the Middle East and the rest of the world. Perhaps one day you can see through your hatred, and give peace a chance!!

    March 8, 2010 at 9:20 pm | Report abuse |
  24. Johan Venner

    Daniel, your comments are verry inappropriate.
    A lot of good friends of mine are risking their lives in Afganisatan so you can live in peace. You should support them. We in the Netherlands are proud of our forces fighting alongside with American troops in the most harsh conditions.
    Victory for our troops in Afganistan and peace for the Afgan people!

    Johan Venner,

    City of Nijmegen, the Netherlands

    March 8, 2010 at 7:36 pm | Report abuse |
  25. Daniel

    Bad news indeed for Islam,as this infighting will only play into the hands of the NATO forces.This will certainly make the already deliriously happy right-wing thugs Washington even happier as it enhances their field day.

    March 8, 2010 at 1:32 pm | Report abuse |