By Jim Sciutto
The U.S. military has obtained new video apparently made by those holding the lone American prisoner of war, Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl.
A U.S. military official told CNN the clip shows the Wood Valley, Idaho, native in diminished health from the effects of close to five years in captivity.
He was seized in Afghanistan in June 2009 and is believed held by the Taliban-aligned Haqqani network in Pakistan, the official said.
The so-called proof-of-life video, the first of him in nearly three years, has a reference to December 14, 2013.FULL STORY
By Wes Bruer, CNN
One of the most wanted terrorists in Yemen. A son of the Haqqani Network founder. A man whose capture was worth $5 million to the FBI: The United States and its allies took out some of these key terror leaders throughout 2012.
Take a look at those top leaders and more who were killed or indicted in the past year:
1. Abu Yahya al-Libi
Al-Libi was second in command of al Qaeda under Ayman al-Zawahiri and a senior leader of the terror group’s external operations against the West. Al-Libi was also an Islamic scholar who appeared in many recruitment videos. The U.S. State Department offered a $1 million reward for his capture. He was killed on June 4 in a U.S. drone strike in Pakistan.
By Jamie Crawford
The chief of suicide operations for a Pakistan-based terror organization has been officially listed as a "terrorist" by the United States, coinciding with a similar action by the United Nations on Monday.
Qari Zakir, chief of suicide operations for the Haqqani Network, was labeled a specially designated global terrorist under the authority of an executive order, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton announced in a written statement. The designation blocks Zakir from all of his property that is subject to U.S. jurisdiction and prohibits any U.S. nationals from engaging in any transactions on behalf, or for the benefit, of Zakir.
In addition to the designation by the United States, Zakir and the Haqqani Network were listed by the United Nations sanctions committee in actions that require all U.N. member states to implement a freeze of assets, a travel ban and an arms embargo against both entities.
By Jamie Crawford
The Haqqani network, a notorious militant group responsible for the deaths of U.S. service members in Afghanistan, has evolved from a politically inspired insurgent group into a "sophisticated and diversified mafia-type network" that finances itself through kidnapping, extortion, and the lucrative rare-earth metal trade, a new report says.
In a wide-ranging report about the Pakistan-based group, the Combating Terrorism Center at West Point, New York, likened the "hybrid organization that is at once political and criminal in nature" to a complex and sophisticated organized criminal enterprise seeking to increase its stature in the community while resorting to criminal means to remain solvent.
From its base in the tribal areas of northwest Pakistan, the Afghan-led group has formed alliances with al Qaeda, the Pakistani and Afghan Taliban, and the Pakistani intelligence services to further its aims, the report says. Community members in Pakistan interviewed for the report described the group as "virtually untouchable."
By Jamie Crawford
The House of Representatives passed a bill Tuesday calling on the Obama administration to add a Pakistan-based terror group to the list of organizations designated as a foreign terrorist organization (FTO).
"The Haqqani Network is engaged in a reign of terror in Afghanistan and is the single largest threat for IED's our soldiers face in that country," Rep. Mike Rogers, R-Michigan, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, said in a statement. "They actively plot and kill U.S. and allied soldiers and routinely harm innocent Afghan civilian men, women and children in their path. To better protect the lives of U.S. soldiers, now is the time for action, not simply paperwork and talk. There is no good reason that this group has not yet been designated."
As CNN's Security Clearance reported last week, the administration has already designated members of the Haqqani leadership as terrorists and subjected them to U.S. sanctions. There is some concern designating the entire group could mean labeling Pakistan a state-sponsor of terror at a time when Pakistan's cooperation is needed as combat operations in Afghanistan come to a close in 2014.
By Jamie Crawford
Responsible for the deaths of American and NATO troops, and multiple attacks on embassies and other infrastructure in Afghanistan, the Haqqani network would seem to fit the bill as a foreign terrorist organization.
For some, that designation is a long overdue.
"Republicans and Democrats in both houses of Congress agree that the Haqqani Network is a violent terrorist organization and grave threat to our security," Rep. Mike Rogers, R-Michigan said in a statement last month when he introduced a bill that would call on the Obama administration to designate the group as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO).
"The Haqqanis are responsible for killing hundreds of our troops, and their indiscriminate attacks have also murdered countless innocent Afghan men, women, and children."