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Fake Taliban negotiator fools NATO 23, November 2010

Posted by thegulfblog.com in Central Asia.
Tags: , , , ,

Much has been made recently of the NATO negotiations with the Taliban in Afghanistan.

Progress was reported on numerous occasions in ‘talks’ with Mullah Akhtar Muhammad Mansour, the second highest official in the Taliban movement. The problem is that the man with whom they were negotiating was not actually who he said he was. Seems he was just a chancer trying his luck, perhaps a shopkeeper from Quetta in Pakistan.

Now he has enough money and kudos to retire for life.

If only those involved had taken Foreign Policy’s top 10 tips to tell if your new ally is actually an impostor.

10. Keeps asking if the peace talks can be held in the Maldives

9. Eyepatch switches sides from meeting to meeting

8. Introduces himself as “Colonel Iqbal from the ISI”

7. Runs up a large minibar tab at the Four Seasons Kabul

6. Wife angling for a spot on “The Real Housewives of Kandahar”

5. Claims to be texting Mullah Omar but is actually just playing Angry Birds the whole time

4. Offers to settle Afghan War with a game of Jenga

3. Turban made of an actual towel

2. Wears trench coat, offers to sell the letters O and U

1.  Offers to trade Osama bin Laden for Justin Bieber


1. Abstract JK - 23, November 2010

Mr. David, I think you are jumping to conclusions. From NYT’s article:
“Indeed, some Afghan leaders are still holding out hopes that the man really is or at least represents Mr. Mansour — and that he will come back soon.

“Questions have been raised about him, but it’s still possible that it’s him,” said the Afghan leader who declined to be identified.”

Some Afghan leaders are hoping that maybe, just maybe, he is actually Taliban, and not a Quetta shoeshiner. Who knows, maybe the anonymous Afghan leader is correct. However, if I had to put money on it, my guess is that he won’t be back anytime soon.

This story is so incredibly ridiculous that my first reaction was that the Onion had hacked into NYT’s homepage.

2. Paul - 25, November 2010

You’ve to wonder about all those drone attacks, where they seem to be killing Al Qaida’s third man every few weeks. That and the scores of civilians killed in every attack.

3. Timothy - 28, November 2010

If one can start a war based on a lie, wouldn’t it be equally valid to end one with a lie?

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