The Italian government reacted with outrage today following reports in the Times of London that the Italian government had been secretly paying off Taliban factions in the Sarobi region to keep them from attack Italian troops.
NATO spokesmen said they saw “no evidence” in the article and Italy’s Defense Minister Ignazio La Russa says he intends to sue the well known British paper for publishing the claims.
But far from just making unfounded claims, the paper actually cites quite a few people, including local Taliban leadership who say the deal was well known and members of the Afghan government and military who confirm that they were well aware of the relationship.
Perhaps the most troubling aspect of the report however is the 2008 ambush in the region that left 10 French soldiers dead and 21 wounded. The Taliban commander quoted in the Times says the French soldiers who came to the area launched attacks against his group, which were initially interpreted as a betrayal by the Italian forces. The French government is coming under growing pressure to investigate the background of the attack, the deadliest for them in the eight year war.
Last 5 posts by Jason Ditz
- Catalonia Threatens Civil Disobedience as Spain Prepares Takeover - October 23rd, 2017
- Senators 'Stunned' to Learn US Has 1,000 Troops in Niger - October 23rd, 2017
- US to Put Nuclear Bombers Back on 24-Hour Alert - October 23rd, 2017
- Niger Mayor: Villagers Suspected of Helping in Ambush of US Troops - October 23rd, 2017
- Iraqi Troops Build Up Near Key Kurdish Oil Export Pipeline - October 23rd, 2017