NATO Kills Haqqani ‘Leader’ in Airstrike

Heretofore Unheard of 'Leader' Was Sitting Under a Tree

NATO officials say they killed a high-profile leader in the Haqqani network, Sher Mohammad Hakimi, in an air strike that was launched at some point on Sunday. Officials say Hakimi was sitting under a tree at the time.

If you’ve never heard the name Sher Mohammad Hakimi, you’re not alone. Like so many other posthumously promoted “leaders,” Hakimi appears to have never been mentioned once in any of the myriad comments about the Haqqanis over the past several years.

The Haqqani network, also called the Haqqani family, is an extremely insular militant faction with deep criminal interests whose leadership consists almost entirely of relatives of leader Jalaluddin Haqqani, and has been blamed for a number of attacks by NATO, even when other groups claimed credit.

And indeed Logar Province, in Afghanistan’s east, is fairly far afield of Haqqani network’s usual stomping grounds, in the area around Pakistan’s North Waziristan Agency. Though it wouldn’t be unheard of for them to be active anywhere in Afghanistan, it would be unusual for them to deploy a top leader so far outside of their comfort zone.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.