ArchiveOODA OriginalRisk Intel Report

How the Taliban Got Their Groove Back: Developments Point to Strengthening of Taliban-led Insurgency

A number of recent developments relating to the Taliban -led insurgency in Afghanistan have coalesced to portend a near-term strengthening of the Taliban, an escalation of attacks, and possibly a concerted push on the capital. Guerrilla Country As noted in these pages for some months, a regrouped and resurgent Taliban along with a cocktail of militant actors?including al-Qaeda elements, opium drug runners, warlords, and criminal networks?have formed loose alliances oriented along the common cause of battling the Kabul government and coalition forces and defending the advantageous environment of quasi-anarchy in Afghanistan’s hinterlands. Taliban attacks have become more brazen, resolute, and deadly in recent months, marked by an upsurge in the use of suicide bombings and larger-scale guerrilla assaults. The Taliban resurgence has been fueled by financing, materiel, and fighters streaming in from Pakistan , foreign mujihideen, al-Qaeda, and from some international charities and patrons in the Middle East. The Taliban has benefited from the state of quasi-anarchy in many of Afghanistan’s contested, hinterland provinces, where the Kabul government has been unable to extend its writ and impose security and where thinly stretched Coalition forces battle to maintain a foothold. In these regions, the lack of security, government presence, and development have created a permissive environment for poppy cultivation, with the drug runners entering into synergistic alliances variously with the Taliban, other militant elements, and corrupt provincial government officials. Drug profits fund militancy in return for muscle and protection to bolster the drug lords’ own robust militant wings. The drug profits and the overall anarchic environment serve as the prized life blood of these militant nexuses, in turn driving the militants’ common interest in challenging attempts by the government and Coalition forces to wrest control of the regions. It has also left the local population impoverished, unprotected, and disillusioned with their

Want more insight?

This content is restricted to members only. Members get access to all of the content on this site. This includes over 3000 Risk Intel Reports, the Attack Database (10,000 entries), over 3000 Intel Advisories, Threat Group Profiles on 500+ groups and over 100,000 curated OSINT excerpts. Your membership also supports the cost of producing our hand-curated Daily OSINT report.

Please consider becoming a member. For more information please click here. Thanks!
OODA Analyst

OODA Analyst

OODA is comprised of a unique team of international experts capable of providing advanced intelligence and analysis, strategy and planning support, risk and threat management, training, decision support, crisis response, and security services to global corporations and governments.