Taliban Chutzpah in Iran and Afghanistan and Egypt………….

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Until two months ago, Hamid had spent the better part of the past decade under house arrest in Iran, he said, after being detained entering the country when Afghanistan fell to coalition forces in late 2001…….. Now, after a sustained lobbying campaign by family members, Hamid is free. We met back in his Egyptian homeland nearly two years after we first began talking online, a months-long conversation (and, at times, debate) we had over email about our respective ideas. “I thought Iran intended to hold me forever,” he said when we met at the cafe. “They denied that I was there but after the campaign from my family, my presence became known and if the outside world knows someone is there, then they have a chance of a deal being made for their release.” Hamid knows more than most about the machinations driving Iran’s detention and release of foreign fighters who had illegally crossed its borders; he served at times as the unofficial Taliban emissary to the country. But he hotly contests that he represented al Qaeda or its interests to the government in Iran, as is alleged by the United States. “Al Qaeda did not send me, nobody sent me. I made the proposal to Mullah Omar to reach out to Iran when he came to visit us in the village south of Kandahar airport, in 1997, and he agreed.” The proposal Hamid recounts would have been part of efforts aimed at unlocking the Iranian embargo that later intensified after several Iranian diplomats were killed in 1998 by Taliban forces at Mazar-i-Sharif…………

He was an al-Qaeda man: the Arabs in Afghanistan were all al-Qaeda, not Taliban. To say that those Iranian diplomats were “killed” by “Taliban forces” is an understatement. Actually those Iranian diplomats at Mazar-e-Sharif had their throats slit in public by the Taliban when they took the city. That is not simply killing, that is like what al-Qaeda did to American journalist Daniel Pearl in Pakistan. It is interesting that the Taliban were outraged because the Iranians would not help them in 2001. Some Arab Salafis on the Gulfnare still bitter about that, that Iran in 2001 did not help the Taliban who during their rule slit the throats of Iranian diplomats and persecuted most Afghans not just Shi’as. That is what their former and future Saudi allies would call Taliban chutzpah.