Feared Taliban commander believed killed in U.S. strike"
Aug 31, 2007
Military intelligence reports indicate that Mullah Brother and several enemy fighters were killed in the fighting involving air support." While past Afghan government statements about high-level fatalities have turned out to be false, the death of Mullah Brother, if confirmed,
will be a huge blow to insurgent forces in Helmand. Mullah Brother, believed to be a nom de guerre, was the brother-in-law of Mullah Omar, the fugitive one-eyed founder of the Taliban movement, and was said to be in regular contact with the leader. He was also a keen military tactician, well versed in guerrilla warfare and was known for his ability to inspire fighters.
When the Taliban ruled Afghanistan, Mullah Brother held the position of the military commander for the western provinces of Afghanistan. Until his reported death, he was also a member of the 10-man Taliban ruling council. He was hugely admired and respected among the rank and file and the higher echelons of the movement.
It is unclear whether Mullah Brother was killed by an air strike or by gunfire. But Zahir Azimi, a Defence Ministry spokesmen, believed he was probably killed "in ground fighting." Mr. Azimi also confirmed the importance of Mullah Brother. "Brother was on the blacklist," he said. The blacklist is drawn up by U.S. forces to catalogue the most wanted Taliban and al-Qaeda leaders. U.S. and NATO troops have killed a number of high-level Taliban commanders, including Mullah Dadullah, a brutal military commander who was killed by British special forces in May. Source