Friday, April 23, 2021

Not Russia, But Iran Placed Bounties On “American Heads” In Afghanistan – Reports

A new U.S. intelligence report indicates that Iran offered bounties to Taliban fighters for attacking US and coalition forces in Afghanistan. Earlier, there were reports that Russia could have paid the Taliban to attack US soldiers. 

Amid US-China Row; Japan To Militarize Mage Islands With Stealth F-35 Jets

According to reports, Iran distributed propaganda leaflets in Afghanistan via its state-sponsored proxies urging people to target U.S. led coalition forces, and the American intelligence agencies were ‘well-aware’ about the Iranian hand.

A Pentagon briefing document only mentioned that a foreign government paid the Haqqani Network to attack Bagram Airbase last December, while experts familiar with the matter were assured that the country mentioned was Iran.

According to a source speaking to Business Insider, Iran is not hiding the fact of putting bounties on American Soldiers. “They weren’t hiding it: ‘If you bring us American heads, we will pay you”, he said, on a condition of anonymity.

The issue has been well-known to intelligence agencies, however, the rapid scale was surprising. “I couldn’t believe that it was happening out in the open and notoriously. And the Afghans that were bringing it to me because they knew … and they wanted to make sure the US government was tracking on this. All I could tell them was that they were aware and hopefully it gets resolved”, said the source.

The disclosure that Iran might have funded the Taliban follows the dispute over Russian bounties for attacking US troops, an issue that has been repeatedly downplayed by the Trump administration in recent weeks. Russia also rejected the allegations.

In 2010, reports surfaced that Iran offered a $1,000 bounty for each American soldier killed in Afghanistan and the country. Iran has been often accused by the British and US governments supporting the Taliban and Al-Qaeda. Apart from a bounty on soldiers’ heads, Iran also allegedly offered $6,000 for the destruction of an American military vehicle.

Iran has been accused of using proxies around the world engaged to secure its national interests, like Hezbollah in Syria and Houthis in Yemen – engaged in a bitter proxy war with its rivals i.e. Israel, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE.

In Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan have been suspected of having ties with the dreaded Haqqani Network – designated as a terrorist organization with a bounty of $10 million on its leader, Sirajuddin Haqqani. Iranian aid has been linked to at least six attacks carried out in 2019, reported CNN.

Featured News

As MiG-35 Gets Neural Links, IAF Pilot Says India Must Prioritize ‘Capabilities Over Platform’

Russia’s MiG Corporation is developing smart target recognition systems based on neural networks for MiG series aircraft, especially the 4++ generation MiG-35 fighter, the...

Myanmar Lawmakers Flee To India’s Mizoram As Junta Forces Attack Villagers With Drones, RPGs

More than a dozen lawmakers from Myanmar’s National League for Democracy (NLD) have taken shelter in India’s Mizoram state even as the country’s junta...

Indian LCA Tejas Or Pakistani JF-17: Who Is Winning The Malaysian Fighter Jet Contract?

India’s multi-role Tejas fighter has captured the imagination of the Malaysian air force for quite some time now. The 4.5 generation Light Combat Aircraft...

Unreliable Ally: Should US Withdrawal From Afghanistan Be A ‘Wake-Up Call’ For All Major Non- NATO Allies (MNNA)?

US President Joe Biden’s announcement that all American troops will withdraw from Afghanistan by the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks, thus ending...

Afghan Peace Conference In Istanbul, Turkey Postponed Over ‘No Show’ By Taliban

Turkey has announced that it is postponing a much-anticipated Afghan peace conference in Istanbul until the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. "We...