Afghanistan: During this Watch, news reporters and other sources in Kabul reported a series of explosions and gunfire in the center of the city, near the presidential palace and the minister of defense building. Witnesses said the presidential palace was under attack.
Kabul police chief Mohammad Zahir said he could not locate the attack, but confirmed that an attack was in progress early on the morning of 25 June, local time.
A Taliban spokesman said the attack targeted the Presidential Palace, the Ministry of Defense and the CIA headquarters.
Comment: This attack might be Taliban retaliation for President Karzai’s refusal to join talks with the Taliban in Doha, Qatar. It is not so much a show of force as an exposure of vulnerability. This is a sensational security breach in the most heavily fortified part of Kabul.
Latest reporting indicates only the four attackers were killed, but the outer perimeter of a US facility was breached.
Phi Beta Iota: Karazi does not seem to realize that he will be hunted down and killed wherever he goes after the Taliban regain control of Afghanistan, and that his fortune in Paris and elsewhere is being tracked for official confiscation after he is tried in absentia, killed in exile, and his family neutralized in ways we can only begin to imagine. The CIA does not seem to realize that they are blown down to their communicators, and the Taliban can take them down whenever it pleases — right now they are simply a convenient flow of cash of which the Taliban gets a very considerable portion. The only negotiation that will save Karzai and allow the Americans to leave without severe casualties is one that a) includes Pakistan, China, and Russia; b) recognizes the inevitability of the Taliban recapturing Kabul put perhaps leaving two autonomous districts in the mix; and c) negotiates an explicit demilitarized zone in Kabul, to include taking away the armored coffins that some fool is mandating be the only means of transport in and around Kabul for all personnel except those with the authority to ignore him. The last contractor team to comply with this idiot order lost four dead, three more to severe burns all over their body evacuated to a specialty burn unit in CONUS, and the last one quit on the spot. We are quite certain the Taliban knows with precision the internal layout of the palace and the CIA Station — as in Saigon, the first thing to go when it gets real will be the communications rooms in the palace and the Station. We note with interest how badly designed the compound is — take out the turrents and whatever webcams are on the street, and the defenders are blind.