New Delhi, Aug 31: The Taliban wants to set the record straight about its leadership. Amidst talk of a major power struggle within the Taliban following the death of Mullah Omar which was only recently announced, the outfit released a detailed biography of Mullah Akthar Mansoor.
The details of the Mullah Mansoor was shared with the Pajhwok Afghan News by a source close to the Taliban.
The life of Mullah Mansoor now the most powerful leader of the Taliban makes for interesting reading. It is stated that he had established the Turaya sattelite telephone business in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
The man who oversaw Khandahar:
Although the Khandahar operation does not figure in his biography, Indian officials who had visited Afghanistan at that time recollect him as a fierce man. He was sporting a pair of Rayban glasses and was seated in his Land Rover. After Maulana Masoor Azhar was dropped off, Mullah Mansoor got of the vehicle and took him away not before giving him a warm hug.
Mansoor according to his biography was born in the year 1963 in the Band Taimor village of Maiwand district in southern Kandahar province. He belongs to the Ishaqzai tribe and was part of the group which fought the Russians.
Mansoor was in charge of airport security in the year 1995 and later took over as a commander of jet fighters. He was later made the minister of civil aviation and transport and also the commander of the air force in the year 1996.
Putting an end to the power struggle:
Analysts would say that there is a meaning behind the Taliban putting out the biography of its leaders. When there were doubts being cast over whether Mullah Omar was alive or not a few months back, the Taliban had shared his biography. It had said that Mullah Omar was actively taking part in Jihad and was overseeing the warriors of the Taliban.
However the Taliban could not hold on that lie for too long and noticing that the outfit was breaking up, they decided to announce his death and make way for a new leader. The announcement of Mullah Mansoor was the most obvious choice and as per the biography it clearly states that he was very close to Mullah Omar.
Many however expected that the mantle of the leadership would fall on Mullah Yakoob the son of Mullah Omar. However with the ISI meddling in the affairs of the Taliban, the name of Mullah Mansoor was chosen and an announcement made during the ceremony that was conducted to pay homage to Mullah Omar.
There has been an undercurrent within the Taliban over the issue of leadership. While Mullah Yakoob continues to frown, a majority of the Taliban is backing Mansoor today. The publishing of his biography aims are putting an end to the leadership issue within the Taliban at least for now.