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Ex-CIA Official Accuses Retired ISI Chief of Supporting Taliban

A former Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) official has accused Hameed Gul, a retired Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) chief of Pakistan, of secretly supporting the Taliban.

Art Keller, who was posted to Pakistan last year, has claimed that Gul along with other retired army officers supported the Taliban "to the degree that they aren't arrested or forced to cease and desist, they are tacitly tolerated," The News quoted a Guardian news report, as saying.

Keller said that soldiers posted to Waziristan, a tribal area that hosts an estimated 2,000 al-Qaida fighters, are "huddling in their bases, doing nothing".

"Their approach was to pretend that nothing was wrong because any other approach would reveal that they were unwilling and unable to do anything about Talibanisation," he added.

Keller said that behind the scenes, the fight was driven by divisions among the officers, the paper reported.

"There are moderates who fear Talibanisation, the professional jihadis who want to embrace the Taliban again, and the middle group who aren't too fond of the Taliban, but resent doing anything under pressure from the US out of sheer bloody-minded stubbornness," he said, adding, "Because of (that), the Pakistani military remains paralysed."

The Guardian had quoted Gul as saying, "I morally support the movement to end the American occupation of Afghanistan. But there is no physical dimension to it, no hidden agenda".


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