With Afghan troops in retreat and soon to lose vital American air support, Taliban commanders are voicing exuberance about quickly seizing full control of the country and re-establishing their version of an Islamic state. […]
They are now present in almost every province and are encircling several major cities — a strategy the militants employed in the mid-1990s when they overran most of Afghanistan until ousted by a US-led invasion after the 2001 September 11 attacks. […]
Despite the talk of a swift military victory, a Taliban spokesman said decisions on the war’s future course ultimately rested with the leadership. “It’s natural that military commanders want to use force,” said the spokesman. “But decisions are made at the top… so any rulings made by the leadership council will be implemented, and the commanders will follow.”
Away from the frontline, the Taliban are increasingly overseeing civil projects inside their territory.
Misbah and his troops have run their hospital for two years, where they distribute medicine to nearby residents and treat wounded jihadists and civilians alike. Injured Taliban fighters are often moved in and out of the hospital, however, to avoid air strikes.
The facility also hosts first aid classes conducted by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), which also offers similar courses to government forces in Ghazni.
“With this training we can help the wounded on the battlefield,” said Taliban fighter Hafizullah, as ICRC medics passed on instructions to militants nearby. The ICRC often works with both sides in conflict zones in order to have access to civilian populations. Läs artikel