Official Claims Afghanistan ISIS Capable of Striking US

ISIS-K has survived several offensives intended to wipe them out

As the administration tries to negotiate an end to the Afghan War with the Taliban, the opponents of a pullout are increasingly intent on playing up the threat to the US homeland posed by other factions within Afghanistan. In particular, this has focused on the local ISIS affiliate.

ISIS-K, which operates primarily out of Afghanistan’s Nangarhar Province, and in the neighboring part of Pakistan has carried out a number of attacks in Afghanistan and Pakistan over the last several years. Being repeatedly declared defeated by the Afghan government, the group has survived and even grown in sophistication.

An unnamed US intelligence official now says that the ISIS-K has the inclination, and might have the capacity to carry out strikes overseas, and that this might well mean an attack in the United States.

The intended implication is that ISIS-K needs to be challenged by the US military. The reality, however, is that the US military has been attacking ISIS-K for years, and have accomplished little in doing so.

By contrast, the Taliban has shown an ability to rout the ISIS-K when their territories have intersected, and with the peace deal including the Taliban promising to keep ISIS out of Afghanistan, the US might find that a peace deal will do a better job at foiling ISIS-K than the 18 years of occupation ever did.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.