Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo claimed Iran has “enormous control” over al-Qaeda in an interview with Voice of America’s Siamak Dehghanpour Tuesday. Pompeo proved a long-time theory on the close relationship between the Iranian government and the terrorist organization.
In January of this year, the former secretary of state claimed that Iran’s highest institutions were helping al-Qaeda during a speech to the National Press Club. The speech was titled “The Iran-al-Qaeda Axis.” Afterwards, he was accused on Twitter by Iran’s Foreign Minister Javad Zarif of telling “warmongering lies.”
But later the Defense Intelligence Agency confirmed that there were members of al-Qaeda headquarted in Iran. So Pompeo doubled down. “Al-Qaeda’s global terror operations is headquartered in Iran, with the permission of the Iranian regime,” Pompeo tweeted.
When asked about this latest tweet, Pompeo suggested Iran maintains the relationship to protect itself. In exchange for providing “support and enabl[ing] these al-Qaeda leaders to conduct their global operations campaign,” Iran gets a promise that these terrorists “won’t conduct operations against Iranian assets or inside of Iran,” Pompeo said.
“This gives them enormous control,” Pompeo went on.
You can follow Jenny Goldsberry on Twitter @jennyjournalism
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Taliban Holds Parade for 250 Newly Trained Soldiers with American-Made Weapons Left Behind
As the result of an ill-prepared withdrawal that went horribly wrong, the Taliban now holds a large stock of weapons and equipment left behind.
On Sunday, Taliban forces held a very bone-chilling parade showing off their captured American-made armored military vehicles and Russian helicopters. The act was “a display that showed their ongoing transformation from an insurgent force to a regular standing army” writes CNN.
The Taliban are no longer terror insurgents fighting against American forces that had once freed Afghanistan from the Taliban. As the result of an ill-prepared withdrawal that went horribly wrong, the Taliban now holds a large stock of weapons and equipment left behind.
The parade was part of a graduation for 250 newly trained Taliban soldiers, said defense ministry spokesman Enayatullah Khwarazmi. CNN reports, “The exercise involved dozens of US-made M117 armored security vehicles driving slowly up and down a major Kabul road with MI-17 helicopters patrolling overhead. Many soldiers carried American-made M4 assault rifles.”
Tragically, much of the weaponry taunted in the parade by Taliban forces were supplied by the United States to the American-backed government in Kabul during the past two decades. The equipment was to aid an Afghan national force and make it capable of fighting the Taliban.
As forces fled Afghanistan, some of the military equipment provided by western forces was flown into Central Asian Countries in an attempt to avoid it landing in the hands of the Taliban. It remains unclear exactly how much of what did end up in Taliban control is still operational.
American troops destroyed over 70 aircraft and dozens of armored vehicles, as well as disabled air defenses before flying out of Kabul during the frenetic evacuation. CNN reports “Taliban officials have said that pilots, mechanics and other specialists from the former Afghan National Army would be integrated into a new force, which has also started wearing conventional military uniforms in place of the traditional Afghan clothing normally worn by their fighters.”
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