June 2nd, 2010
09:28 AM ET

Troops capture Taliban 'governor' after killing ex-gov

Troops in Afghanistan have captured a Taliban shadow governor not long after killing his predecessor, the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force said Wednesday.

Afghan and international forces captured the Taliban shadow governor of Baghlan province, in northern Afghanistan, as he prepared to go to Pakistan on Monday, the NATO-led military command said in a statement. The capture came just after an airstrike killed the former shadow governor.

The Taliban has shadow governors around Afghanistan. They are front men in a de facto Taliban government network that works alongside the elected legitimate government of Afghanistan.

The Taliban shadow government functions under the name of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan. It is organized much like a legitimate government, with the Taliban appointing governors, giving them performance reviews and replacing them if necessary, according to a report from Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the top U.S. military commander in Afghanistan.

The Taliban are known for embracing a strict version of Sharia, or Islamic law, and the shadow government has set up courts to deliver "swift and enforced" justice both in areas controlled by the Taliban and in areas controlled by the Afghan government, according to McChrystal.

Taliban fighters and laborers are taxed, McChrystal wrote, and the Taliban claim to provide security against the Afghan government and coalition forces as well as those seen as criminals.

The International Security Assistance Force said Wednesday that troops captured the shadow governor in Baghlan a day after an airstrike killed his predecessor. On Saturday, however, the force said the previous shadow governor in Baghlan died in a strike on Friday.

"This capture marks the third time in as many weeks that the Taliban have had to replace named shadow governors for Baghlan province because of coalition operations," the NATO-led military command said Wednesday.

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Filed under: Taliban
soundoff (62 Responses)
  1. Andrew

    The well being of our troops should be the least of your worries. When they entered the military they knew what they were getting into. Stopping another 9/11. And our taxpayers' money isn't going toward this war it's going to fix the auto industy and bank f–k ups. The U.S will not meet a humiliating defeat. The U.S along with the help of the U.K and Poland will squeeze the life out of this evil war machine. Have some patriotism, you stuck up son of a b–ch, Eric.

    June 3, 2010 at 8:19 am | Report abuse |
    • Eric

      Keep on kidding youself mate!!! The situation for Americans in Afghanistan is very grave indeed!!! Seems like the Taliban are toasting the "ANUSES" of them Americans and their allies. Give it till the end of this year and their "Anuses" won't only be toasted they will be burnt black. The fall of the American empire is at hand!! "The U.S will not meet a humiliating defeat " seems like you are also part of the mushroom club (kept in the dark and fed crap by your government)

      June 3, 2010 at 11:04 am | Report abuse |
      • Andrew

        "Kept in the dark and fed crap from the goverment my @$$." It's stupid mothers like you that dug the U.S into this trench. You think you know so much about the outside world and you haven't even been outside of the U.S. And what's with this cut our losses S–t? How can we just quit when we've already sacrificed so much?

        June 3, 2010 at 1:25 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Eric

    If America keeps on fighting the Taliban then very soon they will be a "shadow" of their former self. The Taliban are not short of skill and strategy to defeat the US/Nato forces although they are outmanned and outgunned. Go and see... the coalition forces are not in control of Marjah after their much publicised campaign...15000 coalition soldiers with high-tech weapons and full air support against +-200 Taliban. The Americans will meet with humiliating defeat if they continue with this misadventure into Afghanistan. They need to pull out now and save the young soldiers lives and the American taxpayers money!!!

    June 3, 2010 at 5:18 am | Report abuse |
    • Chuckster

      Eric, where do you get your intelligence informatiom from??? I love this, another Civilian who thinks he has the inside track on Terrorism. Must be Canadian with that type of opinion. Well Eric, I believe you are full of it and I am here to tell you WE WILL GET EVERY ONE OF THESE RATS and POST TOASTY THEIR ANUSES!!! One at a time, methodically, intelligently, and forever!!!! ALL OF THEM WILL PAY THE ULTIMATE PRICE!!!!! We are winning this WAR!!!!!

      June 3, 2010 at 8:34 am | Report abuse |
      • Eric

        Keep on kidding youself mate!!! The situation for Americans in Afghanistan is very grave indeed!!! Seems like the Taliban are toasting the "ANUSES" of them Americans and their allies. Give it till the end of this year and their "Anuses" won't only be toasted they will be burnt black. The fall of the American empire is at hand!! "We are winning this WAR!!!!!" seems like you are part of the mushroom club (kept in the dark and fed crap by your government)

        June 3, 2010 at 11:02 am | Report abuse |
      • Chuckster

        So Eric, you must be a Terrorist, You P.O.S. I hope you go out and take a $**t in your hole so that steel dragon of death can acquire you and toast your anus FOOLLLLLLL!!!! Look up at the sky you Bas***D. I hope they kill all your family also!!!

        June 3, 2010 at 12:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • MaryM

      Fall of the empire? We are not an empire we do not seek to expand control over other territories. We are a nation comprised of people who are unlike any other. We are accustomed to freedoms that we'd spend out last breath protecting. You underestimate the power of the American people. As for the Taliban, their oppressive control over the people will loosen and the country will stabilize because we will educate the people on what they could have without a terrorist nation.

      June 3, 2010 at 11:16 am | Report abuse |
      • Andrew

        Yes, but how do we know who we are educating. We may just be putting tools in their hands for them to turn around and create a resurgence.

        June 3, 2010 at 9:22 pm | Report abuse |
      • Gary Johndro

        MaryM,isn't it time that we drop the charade and be more overt about what we're doing over there?Of course we're building an empire,if not in name,but in fact.And who have we to be afraid of,anyway???

        June 5, 2010 at 8:23 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Iraq Paramedic

    Again very simple people, Ezekeil 37-40, the book of Isaiah & the book of Revalations. Untill the Mesihia comes back down & chains & casts the false prophet, the false pastors & ministers, the anti-christ & Lucipher himself into the lake of fire there will be wars of all kinds. Untill then yes, I think if we keep taking out the higher eschilons of the Taliban organization & working to get the Afghan people the basics of civil society & stay with them a while longer I think Afghanistan is going to blume like a flower in the desert.
    May GOD bless & keep us all !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    June 3, 2010 at 4:36 am | Report abuse |
  4. saffronpixi

    It is a pity that we cannot learn lessons from the past. The NWFP tribes have been notorious for the past 300 years with their defence of their territory from invaders. The British East India Co. tried to force it's way into Afghanistan and after 3 Afghan Wars, were repelled. The Great Game is still on only it's the US beating the drum with the 'Coalition of the willing' and frankly, there has been little progress made either for the people of Afghanistan or the 'anti' Taliban forces. Without getting the 'tribes' on side, nothing can change. The 'Taliban' are people and need to be included and brought to the 'table', to establish any real 'democracy', their continued exclusion can only maintain the hatred.

    June 3, 2010 at 2:36 am | Report abuse |
    • ks


      The people you talk about are the same ones who kill and murder locals and US troops daily. The tailban need to be brought to justice the same way Sadam Hussein was. You would definitely think different if you lost a son, daughter, or spouse in the war. Sleep well tonight dreaming of world peace as a soldier saves your butt from the enemy and allows you the freedom you have to say what you think. If you think they need to be brought to the table then, take your butt over there and try to have a sit down dinner with them. ISee what happens to you. I think they need should get the punishment they deserve !!

      June 3, 2010 at 4:43 am | Report abuse |
    • ks

      The same people you talk about are the ones who kill and murder locals and US troops daily. The tailban need to be brought to justice the same way Sadam Hussein was. You would definitely think different if you lost a son, daughter, or spouse in the war. Sleep well tonight dreaming of world peace as a soldier saves your butt from the enemy and allows you the freedom you have to say what you think. If you think they need to be brought to the table then, take your butt over there and try to have a sit down dinner with them. ISee what happens to you. I think they need should get the punishment they deserve !!

      June 3, 2010 at 4:44 am | Report abuse |
  5. Kill The Taliban

    Human endurance has its limitations. The Taliban are no match for our technology. You can call them heroes, martyrs, or whatever you want. Like the mafia, most of them will be dead. Just watch! 🙂

    June 3, 2010 at 1:58 am | Report abuse |
    • Kill The Taliban

      The kill ratio is ridiculous & not sustainable! The Taliban have time to beat off but not to make babies! 🙂

      June 3, 2010 at 2:00 am | Report abuse |
  6. Kill The Taliban

    Let's not sit on our laurels and keep going after these MFs! 🙂

    June 3, 2010 at 1:52 am | Report abuse |
    • Gary Johndro

      I'm with you all the way!!!!

      June 5, 2010 at 8:19 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Bhatti

    Such shadow structure of Taliban must be liquidated in one go.

    June 2, 2010 at 8:45 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Jack Daniels

    Have you learned your lesson about being "RUDE" and "STUPID" ??

    June 2, 2010 at 4:33 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Chuckster

    They got another one!!! Excellent, now the Taliban should understand that we mean business. Can you really believe how stupid this organization truly is: 1. They were talking crap at 911 and being the big man all the muzlims think they are, they talk crap to the giant in the USA and we go, we see, we stomp their camel anuses all over the place to the point they lose their country. 2. They continue to talk smack and we find these RATS and we either KILL THEM or CAPTURE THEM which in it self really kills them. I say the "Taliban" does not mean "STUDENTS" It means "STUPIDS" and you too can come and kick our worthless anuses. What a joke the Taliban is!!!!!!!!!! We will get all of you one at a time!!!! Beware of the steel dragons in the sky.

    June 2, 2010 at 4:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • Onesmallvoice

      It's the Taliban who are are seeking to defend Islam whereas NATO is hoping to curtail it as much as possible,if not obliterate it altogether and the word "taliban" does mean "student" in Pashtun.

      June 2, 2010 at 4:47 pm | Report abuse |
      • jpriv707

        Onesmallvoice...Yes the Taliban does defend their extreme, hate-filled version of Islam which ruled Afghanistan prior to the NATO invasion where women weren't allowed to leave there house and the same Taliban that sheltered al-Qa'ida and still does...yes you are correct. Does fighting the taliban and religious extremism entail obliterating Islam?...never thought of that way...im not really picking up on the reason behind defining "taliban"...which happens to be of arabic origin

        June 2, 2010 at 5:32 pm | Report abuse |
      • Dan in Lafayette,IN

        Onetinyvoice, the Taliban does not defend Islam, it defames Islam! And if Islam wants to be a true religion of God then it aught to practice the love that God has for all people! The Taliban only uses Islam to terrorize and kill people just to regain power and control over the people! They are not godly people but follow the ways of the devil for power!

        June 2, 2010 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
      • Steve

        onesmallvoice... if anything, the Taliban degrades Islam and makes it look terrible on the world stage. Their hard line practice of Sharia Law should be shunned by all sane people of the world. Claiming it's a "right-wing conspiracy" against Islam proves that you are ignorant.

        June 2, 2010 at 10:00 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Mike C.

    The problem with the snake metaphor is that it doesn't work for terrorist organization in the world today. The snake metaphor works for rogue nations and standing armies. The Taliban is more like a starfish. If you cut off what you think might be it's head, it will just grow another one, if you cut off all 5 of it's heads, 5 more starfish will grow in addition to the first one regenerating too. The only way to kill a starflsh it to destroy it's food source completely, and it will starve. In the Taliban's case, remove poppy and they will wither and die.

    June 2, 2010 at 4:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • TreyMcK

      The food source is an Aghan population with no way live a peaceful life. While fighting the Taliban, we (coalition forces and the Afghan government) also need to provide schools and electricity and a market for farm produce that is not based on poppy production. Feed their stimaches, give them some hope and a means of living a decent life and hearts and minds will follow.
      And, if you still believe destroying the poppy production will destroy the Taliban, figure out how end Western demand for opium,etc. The poppy fields are so profitable because the drug trade is.

      June 2, 2010 at 4:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • Steve

      While eliminating the poppy fields will do some damage to the insurgency, I don't believe it's a back-breaker. I think taking out the leaders (my snakes head method) has the added benefit of creating disorganization and inner fighting with the POSSIBILITY (not a guarantee though) of splintering the organization and creating rival factions within the Taliban. While the Taliban has a common enemy (us), many of them are banded together and very different from one another. We've heard stories about Taliban having foreign fighters that come from several Arab states or even Chechnya (excuse my spelling). I remember reading an article a while back of an insurgent who gave an anonymous interview... stating that the Arab fighters "weren't trusted" and the Chechnians were the best. LEADERSHIP keeps these factions together to fight the common enemy. Take out the leadership, and they'll splinter off, allowing time for the Afghan government to HOPEFULLY do something right for a change.

      June 2, 2010 at 10:07 pm | Report abuse |
  11. John

    We always say we have the "top guy" but they just replace him and the mess continues. This is getting really old without a solution is sight.

    June 2, 2010 at 3:25 pm | Report abuse |
  12. kbtyger

    The key differences are that the USSR:

    1.) used heavy-handed slaughter of civilians as an intentional strategy;

    2.) actively preached an 'alternative' to Islam (Communism) as part of their formal, regular indoctrination campaign; and

    3.) had a super-power backing their opponent.

    These are not the issues facing NATO forces today.

    June 2, 2010 at 2:20 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Dan in Lafayette,IN

    What we need to win this war is to have the local population stand up to the Taliban and al-Qaeda and fight against their dream to turn Afghanistan back 1500 years to a strict Islamic state with sharia law that has no compassion or mercy for the sinner! Their an anti-Christ organization which punishes the sinner severely to adhere to their ideology so they can regain power and control over the people and terrorize the population by killing anyone who does not follow their laws that oppress the Afghan people! Jesus came to this world in a time where the Jewish rulers where cruel to the sinners and oppressed them and even removed them from society and if you look at the Taliban they are worse in their punishment of the sinner, where they would publicly kill those who did not follow their laws! God has a place for those who judge and severely punish the sinners when in fact they are worse sinners with all their terror and killings of innocent people just to regain power over the people! They have no future in Gods kingdom and will be thrown into hell for all their atrocities! Again the Afghan people must stand up to those who use terror and killing people to make them comply to their version of Islam which is against God's love for all people!

    June 2, 2010 at 2:08 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Steve

    scamdoddi... Hmm how can I say this politely... you're an idiot. As PatrickUSA correctly stated, the difference between the U.S./NATO and the Russians is the difference between night and day. Who cares if the Russians didn't win there, because we're not the Russians and we're fighting an entirely different war with entirely different motives. The Russians were fighting to stay there and fully occupy the country for thousands of years if it could. We're fighting to secure the place and for the most part... leave. To put that in more elementary terms for you... we're fighting to secure the country so that it won't become a haven for terrorists again. I seriously doubt we WANT to stay in Afghanistan longer than we have to. Politically speaking, troops dying in a long war only hurts the President, Congress, and other political players. That's why we don't want to stay there any longer than we have to. I hope you enjoyed this little history lesson.

    As for what I stated before, its LOGICAL. The mid to upper level leaders of the Taliban are the facilitators of all the b.s. and violence that goes on over there. They're running a shadow government that seeks to compete with the centralized NATO-backed Afghan government. There are probably thousands of Taliban fighters, but maybe just a few hundred "leaders" such as shadow governors and military combatant leaders. Take those types out, and the thousands of fighters would lay down their arms quicker than some jirga would make them do. It's easier said than done, but it can be done if we stepped up our intelligence and special forces in the area.

    June 2, 2010 at 1:03 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Carol

    Learn your history before you preach!

    June 2, 2010 at 12:41 pm | Report abuse |
  16. Carol

    The Taliban defeated the Russians with the help of the U.S.

    June 2, 2010 at 11:53 am | Report abuse |
    • Daniel-2

      Actually,nobody defeated the Russians in Afghanistan.In 1988,Mikhail Gorbachev made a unilateral decision to phase them out withn 12 months and left the Afghan Communists pretty much to fend for themselves.

      June 2, 2010 at 4:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • MaryM


      That is a political win for the taliban.

      June 3, 2010 at 11:04 am | Report abuse |
  17. scamdoddi

    Cut the head off the snake..huh "Hey Steve"..wheres your head at man? If the russians could'nt beat these guys in the 10 years .The russians lost 50,000 men.This war can't be won.If you think Uncle Sam can beat these guys..your an Idiot!

    June 2, 2010 at 11:40 am | Report abuse |
    • PatrickUSA

      The differences between the Russian and the U.S. experiences in Afghanistan are like night and day. They were beaten with our help but there are no major powers to help the Taliban. The Russians targeted civilians in masse while the U.S. targets only Taliban leaders and soldiers. Our troops keep making mistakes but they are becoming profficient at killing Taliban and Al Queda only. Now it is the Taliban that is intentionally targeting civilians and because of that much of the population has turned against them. What we need now is to stay there until the job is done. In fact, the main problem with getting Karzai and Pakistan to go along with us whole-heartedly is their fear that we will be leaving next year and leaving them to fight the Taliban alone. For that reason they want to keep the option open to negotiate with them. We need to stay there like we did in Korea, until the Taliban is beaten or at least until Pakistan and Afghanistan are able to keep them in check without our help. That will take time, and time is on our side. Unlike when the world came to Afghanistan's aid to drive the Russians out, this time the world is on our side, even the Muslim world, who see Al Queda and the Taliban as threats to their governments.

      June 2, 2010 at 12:40 pm | Report abuse |
      • Daniel-2

        Do you honestly believe that right-wing mumbo-jumbo??? Somehow I don't believe that there is that much of a difference between the Russians and NATO forces.Both kill civilians,but the right-wing fanatics don't want us to know that.

        June 2, 2010 at 4:39 pm | Report abuse |
      • Ryan

        @Daniel 2 you are an anti-USA communist idiot if you are suggesting the the USA actively targets civilians in wars. That is outrageous do u realize what our soliders do for us, yes they make mistakes but im pretty damn sure if you were stuck in a hostile terriory and have seen your comrades killed by the Tablian in cold-blood then you might be a little bit less inclinded to make sure they're Tablian but you wouldn't know because your just one of the millions of spolied Amercians who whines all day about the gov't but won't look into your claims and whose safety you owe to our men and women in uniform

        June 3, 2010 at 9:48 am | Report abuse |
      • Jerry

        Daniel-2, There is one thing the Russian did not have that is Drones, they make a big difference.

        June 3, 2010 at 2:14 pm | Report abuse |
  18. Steve

    This is a good thing. In my opinion, the quickest way to end this war is to take out the leaders of the Taliban and Al Quieda. Cut the head off of the snake, and the body (the lower level foot soldiers) will disperse and integrate back into society. It's the leaders like this shadow Governor and the Al Quieda number 3 that died recently... those guys are the ones who give guidance and order the lower level people to keep going.

    June 2, 2010 at 11:26 am | Report abuse |
    • evenhead

      wish it were that easy, but the problem is that the economy is so bad over there that it's more profitable to join the Taleban, not necessarily because they believe in what the Taleban is about. So even if you do take out some of the heads someone else will step into the position, the only advantage in taking out the heads is that it disorganizes them.

      June 2, 2010 at 8:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • MaryM

      I have to agree with evenhead. The insurgency and terrorist organizations are set up to withstand the head cutting. It's not like fighting the traditional enemy. We need to show the people there is a better way of life for them and it's more profitable to be peaceful. Only then can we stop Al Qaida and the Talibam.

      June 3, 2010 at 11:00 am | Report abuse |
      • ChrisC

        What everyone needs to understand, accept, and ACT on is the simple fact that we're not going to change their culture/society. They've been at odds for hundreds of years and will be at odds for hundreds more. They've all already been shown a better way of life and yet they still choose to remain undeterred and focussed on "their way".

        I say leave them alone to fend for themselves as they've done FOREVER already. If they choose to off each other daily, GREAT.. let them. If they choose to overthrow each other.. GREAT let them. I'm just SOOO tired of watching our country being dragged through the middle of situations they have no business being involved in.

        June 14, 2010 at 12:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • Andrew

      I don't think you understand. Al Quieda and the Taliban are like anextremely well oiled machine. If Osama is killed another will rise to fill his void., and so on and so forth.

      June 3, 2010 at 9:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dave

      This war will truly end when Obama or the congress actually declares war on the Taliban. That is what is missing.
      Everybody keeps calling this a war, except a decloration of war has NOT been approved. When they do that then the rules of engagement will change, and the war will be over with in a week, otherwise its just another Vietnam. The reason our this weak administration went after the Taliban in Afganistan without declaring war was to not make the liberal sissies mad and lose votes. At the expense of American lives.
      With this many weak progressive politians in control and weak Americans screeming socialism and peace, we can't win.
      Its like what Ex Navy seals Marcus Lutrell said, "if the liberal politicians would get out of the way the war would be over in a week".
      For some strange reason, Americans think these crazies that want us dead will just go away if we Americans will be nice. Bull-hockey. All they would like to do to us, is what they already do to their women. Americans appear to be working over time trying to become like them and promoting Muslim values. What the heck is wrong with you Americans.

      Think about it. Does anybody with a brain actually think the Taliban or any of those regimes actually can hold a candle to our supperior fire power?....really?
      Does the Taliban have better technology, better planes, better training, better intelligence, better equipment? Good lord people, we are just a police force right now. The American spirit and determination left during the 60's and we still have our heads up our bu**s.

      Fight like our forefathers did dangit and end the insanity. Man up Americans, and quit being sissies.

      June 4, 2010 at 2:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • Steve

      I think a lot of you are really underestimating "leadership" in terrorist groups. I don't think its as easy as you say for someone to step in and be the "leader" of a particular cell or group. These people are not God, and believe it or not... they have flaws too. If you take out enough of them (especially in a short period of time), disorganization will ensue.

      June 5, 2010 at 1:33 am | Report abuse |