Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Saturday, January 20th, 2018

A New Wave of Targeted Killing, Evident

A new wave of targeted killing is evident in Afghanistan. Targeted killing has always existed in Afghanistan, at least in the last three decades. Over the last ten years, we have witnessed assassination of high profile government authorities. In the year 2011, which is specifically important for Afghanistan and its international backers, along with other acts of insurgency, targeted killing has taken lives at faster pace than ever before in last decade. In less than ten days, two important authorities linked closely to President Hamid Karzai have lost their lives as result of assault by Taliban – July12 his brother Ahmad Wali Karzai and on July 17 his advisor, Jan Muhammad Khan. Jawad Zahak, head of Bamyan provincial council, Gen. Dawood Dawood, police commander in north zone and Khan Muhammad Mujahid, Kandahar police chief were all killed in June, May and April respectively.

Several tribal leaders, provincial and district governors and other high ranking government officials have been targeted by Taliban in the current year. In addition, kidnapping and assassination of businessmen are a growing trend in the country which has doubled the concerns.

Taliban have changed their fighting strategy. Rather than fighting face to face with peace keeping forces, they have focused on commando-style raids, targeted killings, planting IEDs and suicide attacks. Taliban attacks have intensified and that is an undeniable fact. This has, reportedly, caused many important personalities to escape the country and the remaining ones are intending to do the same. Such a trend would definitely have a negative impact on the functioning and moral of the government and would deeply negatively impact the business and commerce activities in Afghanistan. As we are moving ahead, it seems like things would get further worsened.

The role of international community has been important but the government in Afghanistan has not been able to strengthen good governance, peace and democracy in the country. Therefore, the achievement that the West has had in Afghanistan - in economy, security and other areas – is now at great stake. With the kick off of the withdrawal process in this month, insurgency has become many folds. Now even those are not safe who reside behind thick security walls and spend noteworthy amounts of money for their security every month.