Afghan Taliban, In Long Video Showing Elite Jihadi Commandos Training In Many Environments, Signal Readiness To Fight Long-Term In Afghanistan

print
May 6, 2021

The following report is now a complimentary offering from MEMRI's Jihad and Terrorism Threat Monitor (JTTM). For JTTM subscription information, click here.

The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (the Afghan Taliban organization) has released a new video, titled "Victorious Force 2," of its elite jihadi commandos undergoing high-intensity training and preparing for a bigger fight in Afghanistan.[1]

The jihadis carry out a range of training activities: Training in urban warfare; firing from moving cars; fighting in rocky areas; blowing up make-shift buildings; repelling from tall buildings; moving in areas engulfed in flames; jumping into and moving in water; and rope climbing and walking on rope bridges.

Several Taliban commanders, whose names are given only as Qari Faseehuddin and Sheikh Noorullah Munir, speak in Pashtu in the video, which has English subtitles. Qari Faseehuddin says: "The enemies must know that we will never neglect the stability of the Islamic Emirate."[2] The purpose of the video seems to be to both inspire the Taliban mujahideen and warn the Afghan security forces who are engaged in a full-blown war in which the Afghan Taliban seek to overthrow the government of President Ashraf Ghani.

The 39-minute video, produced by the Islamic Emirate's Al-Hijrah Studio, was released on Telegram.[3] A statement and an article were published to accompany the release of the video on the Afghan Taliban's official website. "Al-Hijrah Studio presents," the statement notes, "a thrilling and spectacular new release to its viewers displaying footage of impressive military skills and tactics as well as messages from notable scholarly and military figures."[4] Some clips included could be old, especially from when the mujahideen, the predecessors of the Afghan Taliban, fought against the Soviet troops in Afghanistan in the 1980s.

To the viewers, it describes Al-Hijrah Studio, which is part of the Islamic Emirate's Cultural Commission, as "your impregnable ideological and literary bunker."[5] It adds: "Al-Hijrah Jihadi Studio hopes that its fanbase will exert all efforts in the distribution of this publication."[6] The video includes nasheed (i.e., jihadi songs) from Taliban vocalists such as Al-Haj Mullah Faqir Muhammad Darwesh, Mawlawi Muhammad Amin Hayderi, and Mawlawi Abdul Aziz Azizi. Unidentified Taliban leaders are shown addressing Taliban jihadis graduating from a training center, where they are told: "You have learned that jihad is worship."

The article, written by one Jamal Ibrahim, is titled "The Victorious Force: An Example Of The Military Capabilities Of The Islamic Emirate."[7] It says that when the U.S. invaded Afghanistan in October 2001, the "pundits, think tanks, analysts, and foreigners along with their stooges declared it the end of the Islamic Emirate," which had ruled Kabul from 1996 to 2001.[8]

"At the time, odds were stacked against the mujahideen from a materialistic point of view and the chances of victory seemed slim. The forces of the Islamic Emirate, armed with basic soviet-era automatic weapons, only relied on support from the common people when compared to modern weaponry, sophisticated technology, and airpower of global invading coalition," it says, adding: "Despite the lack of materialistic advantages and capabilities, the Islamic Emirate turned the tide of setbacks into victories by teaching unforgettable lessons to the enemies [i.e. the U.S.-led NATO forces] of Afghanistan with virtually nothing in their hands when it came to weaponry and battlefield resources."[9]

Alluding to the Doha agreement the Islamic Emirate signed with the United States in February 2020, which paved the way for the withdrawal of American and other foreign troops and also for the Taliban to rise to power in Kabul, the article's author says: "After nearly 20 years of blood and sweat, the sincere hard work, sacrifices, will and determination by the leaders and mujahideen of the Islamic Emirate paid off as they transformed into a capable force which brought the technological advanced nations to their knees and ultimately forced them to admit defeat and withdraw their forces."[10]

In this context, the author, Jamal Ibrahim, talks about the video: "As an example of these military capabilities, we have one of the battalions of the Islamic Emirate known as the 'Victorious Force.' When the resistance began, it was disorganized ragtag guerrillas in every corner of the country, but currently they operate as an organized army. The forces of the Islamic Emirate are now the first line of defense for Afghanistan."[11]

Ibrahim goes on to make the following observation about the jihadi force shown in the video: "The Victorious Force is the small example of the current status of the forces who are fully trained and considered the special units within the ranks of mujahideen. They have modern light and heavy weapons, night vision, special military kits, and mini drones. The military capabilities showcase that battalions such as the Victorious Force are the future... Looking at this battalion called the Victorious Force, it shows that the Islamic Emirate is now working hard to fill all the gaps for the future, to have an army that aims to establish peace, stability, defense, to protect the honor, property of people and establish an Islamic system.

"The military force of the Islamic Emirate is an army whose beliefs, thoughts, intellect, and morals are subject to shari'a and are irrigated by the knowledge of Islam. These forces like the Victorious Force are with the people and nation in every situation and place. Soldiers of the Victorious Force along with all other military formations of the Islamic Emirate are equipped with high morale, intellectual and ethical training, and are aware of their religious and cultural values ​​and responsibilities. They will never become a tool of the enemy..."[12]

Following are images from the video:

]

 

[1] T.me/tezkh/3613, April 28, 2021.

[2] T.me/tezkh/3613, April 28, 2021.

[3] T.me/tezkh/3613, April 28, 2021.

[4] AlemarahEnglish.net (Afghanistan), April 28, 2021.

[5] AlemarahEnglish.net (Afghanistan), April 28, 2021.

[6] AlemarahEnglish.net (Afghanistan), April 28, 2021.

[7] AlemarahEnglish.net (Afghanistan), April 28, 2021.

[8] AlemarahEnglish.net (Afghanistan), April 28, 2021.

[9] AlemarahEnglish.net (Afghanistan), April 28, 2021.

[10] AlemarahEnglish.net (Afghanistan), April 28, 2021.

[11] AlemarahEnglish.net (Afghanistan), April 28, 2021.

[12] AlemarahEnglish.net (Afghanistan), April 28, 2021.

The Cyber & Jihad Lab

The Cyber & Jihad Lab monitors, tracks, translates, researches, and analyzes cyber jihad originating from the Middle East, Iran, South Asia, and North and West Africa. It innovates and experiments with possible solutions for stopping cyber jihad, advancing legislation and initiatives federally – including with Capitol Hill and attorneys-general – and on the state level, to draft and enforce measures that will serve as precedents for further action. It works with leaders in business, law enforcement, academia, and families of terror victims to craft and support efforts and solutions to combat cyber jihad, and recruits, and works with technology industry leaders to craft and support efforts and solutions.

Read More