News

    US Says Haqqanis Behind Afghan Attacks

    Luis Ramirez

    U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta says members of the al-Qaida-linked Haqqani insurgent group were behind the spectacular string of coordinated attacks in Afghanistan early Sunday, and they came as no surprise.

    The coalition says the attacks mark the start of the spring fighting season in Afghanistan.

    Haqqani Network

    • FOUNDER: Jalaluddin Haqqani, a former anti-Soviet resistance commander.
    • BASE: North Waziristan, Pakistan along the border with Afghanistan.
    • TOP COMMANDERS: Siraj Haqqani, son of founder Jalaluddin Haqqani. Haji Mali Khan, uncle of Siraj Haqqani.
    • LINKS: U.S. officials have linked the network to Al-Qaida, Pakistani Taliban, and the ISI, the Pakistani intelligence agency.
    • THREAT: U.S. considers it one of the biggest threats to the U.S.-led NATO forces in Afghanistan. It is blamed for many high-profile attacks, including last year's attack on a NATO base that wounded 77 U.S. soldiers, and the attack on the U.S. Embassy in Kabul.

    Militants pounded Kabul and other parts of eastern Afghanistan in coordinated attacks for nearly 18 hours. The Taliban claimed responsibility.

    But U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta says that is not so.

    “The intelligence indicates that the Haqqanis were behind the attacks that took place," said Panetta.

    Panetta told reporters U.S. intelligence knew the attacks were coming, and the militants achieved nothing.

    “There were no tactical gains here," he said. "These are isolated attacks that are done for symbolic purposes and they have not regained any territory.”

    U.S. officials are portraying the attack as a sign that the Afghan security forces they are training are now more capable of standing up to the militants on their own.  Afghan soldiers and police led the fight against the insurgents.

    General Martin Dempsey is the top officer in the U.S. military:

    “The French provided a couple of helicopters," said Dempsey. "We provided a couple of helicopters, but this was very much an Afghan show.”

    But while Afghan forces won American praise for how well they fought, their president blamed the assault on NATO intelligence failures.

    The attacks also raise broader questions of what lies ahead when U.S. forces leave in 2014.  

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Sadat
    April 17, 2012 8:57 AM
    people should not say, Haqani or Taliban carry out attack, instead they should say ISI does.
    ISI is worse than any terrorest group in the world

    by: Rahim
    April 17, 2012 8:44 AM
    The funy think is. after every attack made by ISI in Afghanistan, they make false attack or some type of problem in Pakistan as well to show to the worl they are not behind any attack in Afghanistan because even they are not able to stop attacks in Pakistan.

    by: Michael
    April 17, 2012 5:38 AM
    USA on it's last leg of super powerism? Of course, countires like Afghanistan and Pakistan and Iran are on the rise in your view? Brilliant comment.

    We will leave Afghanistan and the country will be returned to the goats who live there. Should those goats be foolish enough to attack us once more, we will once again pay your one of your rag tag armies with a personal vendatta to hunt down their own countrymen. I will sleep well knowing this is your version of victory.

    by: Ozair
    April 16, 2012 6:23 PM
    Not sure why US does not take action against this terrorist organisation and its main supporter ISI. Don't wait until it is to late, they might strike you again in New York or Washington DC.

    by: Bassey
    April 16, 2012 12:38 PM
    Please l urge all the leaders of Africa's to come together inorder to empower the Youth & to develope the economic of our countinent's.

    by: Stephen Real
    April 16, 2012 12:07 PM
    Another Haqqani Network job right out of Pakistan. The haqqani's are bought and paid for by opium and the Pakistani ISI. How many times does this same scenario has to play out over and over again? Pakistan tribal areas have to be penetrated and operatives terminated plain and simple. Any two-bit hillbilly from Timbuktu could have called this one.

    by: khan
    April 16, 2012 10:40 AM
    usa on its last leg of superpowerisom is the cause of the troubles in the world its power is ebbing away and with all its power plus 60 countries cannot defeat the courage of the brave talibans and its secret behind deals trying to save its arse who are the cowards?

    by: Haron 2 of 2
    April 16, 2012 10:24 AM
    if conditions continue like this. from one side when ISAF, NATO & combat troops leave Afg. from another side when there won't be a real president for this TORN-heart country the result will complete to beneficiary of Pakis & Iran. & a big anguish for those people whom fought 23 year with problems. when Russia says NATO must stay in Afg what is the need when Karzai doesn't sign partnership strategic early? i think he wait to russia come & support his brother as a future president.

    by: Haron 1 of 2
    April 16, 2012 10:08 AM
    i think it's the result of an obstacle declared against night raids operations second all people can claim in these 17 hours battle in Kabul there was nationalism observe there was no armies which was Pashtoon. i think Karzai wants to bring his brothers (Taliban) & get support from Pakistan ISI & Iran spies. CON'T

    by: Vijay Dandapani
    April 16, 2012 9:57 AM
    "US. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton called the attacks "cowardly" in a call Sunday to the U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan, Ryan Crocker."

    That must have the Haqqani network going into paroxysms of shame.

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Brexit Vote Plunges Global Markets Into Uncharted Territoryi
    X
    June 24, 2016 9:38 PM
    British voters plunged global markets into unknown territory after they voted Thursday to leave the European Union. The results of the Brexit vote, the term coined to describe the referendum, caught many off guard. Analysts say the resulting volatility could last for weeks, perhaps longer. Mil Arcega reports.
    Video

    Video Brexit Vote Plunges Global Markets Into Uncharted Territory

    British voters plunged global markets into unknown territory after they voted Thursday to leave the European Union. The results of the Brexit vote, the term coined to describe the referendum, caught many off guard. Analysts say the resulting volatility could last for weeks, perhaps longer. Mil Arcega reports.
    Video

    Video Orlando Shooting Changes Debate on Gun Control

    It’s been nearly two weeks since the largest mass shooting ever in the United States. Despite public calls for tighter gun control laws, Congress is at an impasse. Democratic lawmakers resorted to a 1960s civil rights tactic to portray their frustration. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti explains how the Orlando, Florida shooting is changing the debate.
    Video

    Video Tunisian Fishing Town Searches for Jobs, Local Development Solutions

    As the European Union tries to come to grips with its migrant crisis, some newcomers are leaving voluntarily. But those returning to their home countries face an uncertain future.  Five years after Tunisia's revolution, the tiny North African country is struggling with unrest, soaring unemployment and plummeting growth. From the southern Tunisian fishing town of Zarzis, Lisa Bryant takes a look for VOA at a search for local solutions.
    Video

    Video 'American Troops' in Russia Despite Tensions

    Historic battle re-enactment is a niche hobby with a fair number of adherents in Russia where past military victories are played-up by the Kremlin as a show of national strength. But, one group of World War II re-enactors in Moscow has the rare distinction of choosing to play western ally troops. VOA's Daniel Schearf explains.
    Video

    Video Experts: Very Few Killed in US Gun Violence Are Victims of Mass Shootings

    The deadly shooting at a Florida nightclub has reignited the debate in the U.S. over gun control. Although Congress doesn't provide government health agencies funds to study gun violence, public health experts say private research has helped them learn some things about the issue. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
    Video

    Video Trump Unleashes Broadside Against Clinton to Try to Ease GOP Doubts

    Recent public opinion polls show Republican Donald Trump slipping behind Democrat Hillary Clinton in the presidential election matchup for November. Trump trails her both in fundraising and campaign organization, but he's intensifying his attacks on the former secretary of state. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone reports.
    Video

    Video Muslim American Mayor Calls for Tolerance

    Syrian-born Mohamed Khairullah describes himself as "an American mayor who happens to be Muslim." As the three-term mayor of Prospect Park, New Jersey, he believes his town of 6,000 is an example of how ethnicity and religious beliefs should not determine a community's leadership. Ramon Taylor has this report from Prospect Park.
    Video

    Video Internal Rifts Over Syria Policy Could Be Headache for Next US President

    With the Obama administration showing little outward enthusiasm for adopting a more robust Syria policy, there is a strong likelihood that the internal discontent expressed by State Department employees will roll over to the next administration. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports.
    Video

    Video Senegal to Park Colorful ‘Cars Rapide’ Permanently

    Brightly painted cars rapide are a hallmark of Dakar, offering residents a cheap way to get around the capital city since 1976. But the privately owned minibuses are scheduled to be parked for good in late 2018, as Ricci Shryock reports for VOA.
    Video

    Video Florida Gets $1 Million in Emergency Government Funding for Orlando

    The U.S. government has granted $1 million in emergency funding to the state of Florida to cover the costs linked to the June 12 massacre in Orlando. U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced the grant Tuesday in Orlando, where she met with survivors of the shooting attack that killed 49 people. Zlatica Hoke reports.
    Video

    Video How to Print Impossible Shapes with Metal

    3-D printing with metals is rapidly becoming more advanced. As printers become more affordable, the industry is partnering with universities to refine processes for manufacturing previously impossible things. A new 3-D printing lab aims to bring the new technology closer to everyday use. VOA's George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Big Somali Community in Minnesota Observes Muslim Religious Feast

    Ramadan is widely observed in the north central US state of Minnesota, which a large Muslim community calls home. VOA Somali service reporter Mohmud Masadde files this report from Minneapolis, the state's biggest city.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora