Killer of Karzai's half-brother worked against Taliban, officials say
Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzai at service for slain brother Photo: STRDEL/AFP/Getty Images
July 15th, 2011
11:27 AM ET

Killer of Karzai's half-brother worked against Taliban, officials say

By David Ariosto

The guard who killed the half-brother of Afghan President Hamid Karzai, had for years worked with International Security Assistance Forces against Taliban militants, according to three local officials with direct knowledge of the dealings.

Sardar Mohammed, who authorities say shot and killed Kandahar's provincial council chief Ahmed Wali Karzai, received training from ISAF and participated in intelligence gathering against militants across the region, according to Besmellah Afghanmal, a provincial council member with close ties to the Karzai family.

He "was one of the trusted commanders for the Karzais," Afghanmal told CNN. "Sardar Mohammad was working with American Special Forces closely and he was participating in many operations with American Special forces against the Taliban in (the) south."

Others, like provincial parliament member Hashim Watanwal, say Mohammad had worked with both U.S. and Canadian forces in Kandahar - an ethnically Pashtun dominated region long-considered the Taliban heartland.

Baz Mohammed, a Kandahar tribal elder with close connections to the Karzai clan, said the guard was "a trustworthy person" who collaborated regularly with ISAF in Kandahar.

An ISAF spokeswoman declined to comment on the claims.

Though suspected of corruption and opium dealing, Wali Karzai was considered a major power-broker in Afghanistan's restive south and a bulwark for his brother against the Taliban militancy. His death Tuesday sent shock-waves across Afghanistan's political landscape, and prompted President Karzai to weep as mourners gathered for his half-brother's burial the following day.

Saidkhan Khakrezwal, a member of the Kandahar provincial council, said he and others were with Wali Karzai when the guard came into the room and asked to talk to him. The guard took "Wali to another room and shoots him with a pistol that he had in his hand," Khakrezwal said.

Local authorities say the shooter was then shot dead by other guards.

The Taliban soon claimed responsibility for the shooting, saying Mohammed had been working for them. It is not clear whether the guard had been a member of a Taliban sleeper cell or if the killing was motivated by some other factor. On Thursday, in a brazen strike illustrating the power and reach of Afghan militants, a suicide bomber slipped into a Kandahar mosque and killed at least six people, wounding 15 others. The attack occurred as several high-ranking Afghan officials gathered to remember Wali Karzai.

CNN's Faizel Reshad contributed to this report

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Filed under: Afghanistan • Karzai
soundoff (63 Responses)
  1. TowelHeadsAreMorons

    Hey Mr. Taliban!.....Tally me dead terrorist's.....Daylight come and me wanna go home.

    July 19, 2011 at 9:08 pm | Reply
  2. dog4dog

    america has lost every war, that we got ourselves into, since ww2, we never: went to china, went to north vietnam, went to pakistan, went to iran........., we never should have been in iraq (obama will be the first one to tell you that), the war in pakistan is against taliban who harbored bin laden in 01, .......the dea should put one of their muslim agents in charge of the country and rule for ten years as a dictator, control the export of heroin, sell just enough to build the afghan economy and not enough to reach usa's shores, the war is against fundamental islam, that is hilary clinton's job (socialize the young lonely arab men), that state department and then the second part of the war is on the cia (terrorize the islamic fundamentalists, that means murder in riyhad and other places), osama's terror council is defeated, alqaeda may have been founded under him but the next attack may come from anyone, the usa must kill them all and it will be won

    July 18, 2011 at 5:57 pm | Reply
    • dog4dog

      it is truly the case that total warefare alone is what wins war, general macarthur lost his job in korea because he could not abandon its principles, the usa has lost every war since the loss in korea......why might you ask....because of total war....when you go to war you go against a...military, yeas but....you fight an economy, political structure, religion, social structure (war on drugs), starve them to death and they will submit, war ain't pretty, take wwii for example, the germans didn't fight (other than their ss) after berlin fell and a leader stood up, the war on terror is not against a country, it is against an ideology, that means killing all young arab men in the mideast, in particular saudi arabia

      July 18, 2011 at 6:32 pm | Reply
      • dog4dog

        everyone new when the planes hit that the usa would win the war because i feel in my heart that everyone of usa is still 110% committed to killing all who preach the al qaeda sermon, usa is a peace loving nation but they decided to steal our lives from us, not the other way around

        July 18, 2011 at 6:44 pm |
    • John Doe

      I’m interested to know what "wars" you feel we have lost. Seeing is America has not participated in ANY WARS sanctioned by congress since WWII. What you view as wars, are in all actuality combat operations or skirmishes. I don’t meant o belittle any American life that has been lost in combat operations. I have served in both Iraq and Afghanistan. So let’s back up, since WWII America sent military forces into Korea. The result? We kept the north from over running over the south, set up a semi permanent DMZ and kept the communist north from continuing their advance. Ill chalk that up as a win. Vietnam ended with a mutual seize fire. Although one can argue no political goal was actually achieved, I can say the heroics of combatants on both sides led to a mutual seize fire. Ill chalk that up as a tie. Grenada, well even though it lasted ten minutes all military objectives were met. Panama, we took the psycho drug kingpin out of power pretty effectively, Cold War, well that’s pretty obvious, please tell me how that can’t be considered a win. Gulf War, which wasn’t really a war but an overwhelming domination of Iraqi forces in Kuwait. Operation Iraqi freedom, Iraq completely invaded, dictatorship removed, citizens no longer under the rule of a psychopath that is an overwhelming win. Afghanistan, we did more to dismantle that militant strong hold than any other power in history. And yes we are still there kicking ass and taking names. Don’t be fooled by liberal media, American forces have the upper hand. Shoot man, we went into nuclear Pakistan in the dead of night without so much as startling goat herders and kicked bin landens ass all over the place. Oh I bet you subscribe to the theory he was already dead. lol America has NEVER LOST a war since WWII. The only one in question, Vietnam if you would actually read a book or watch a documentary was for all intents and purposes as tie. The American War machine has never been stopped or shut down. We roll on because we have the best men and women who fight for good, fight for democracy, fight for peoples hopes, fight for justice. We are not an empirical state; we don’t care about land acquisition. We care about the rights of the little guy, and showing we will not be bullied. I don’t agree with you, but don’t worry ill still fight for you.

      July 27, 2011 at 11:39 am | Reply
  3. Waseem

    That is a very romantic notion.

    July 16, 2011 at 12:30 pm | Reply
  4. Wmalik

    Why does an individuals action effect his religion in the Muslims case! What about the actions of IRA, Hitler to mention a few. Are these associated with Christianity? How about the atrocities committed by the roman catholic church against the savages of south America. Before you should demonise Islam at least do some research on the other religions to get some educated parallels.

    July 16, 2011 at 12:22 pm | Reply
    • bn

      relevance ?

      July 17, 2011 at 3:10 am | Reply
  5. Marine5484

    Most likely he had a family member kidnapped by the Taliban. Is it a well know tacit they use in Afghanistan and in Iraq. They control people through fear and intimidation and as hard as we try to protect the population it is very hard borderline impossible to protect the people we come into contact with and or help us.

    July 15, 2011 at 11:58 pm | Reply
    • Davethecanuck

      I'm betting the simplest explaination is correct.
      The guy pissed off or insulted the bodyguard, bodyguard goes postal, Taliban take credit.

      July 18, 2011 at 1:43 pm | Reply
  6. whybs

    All religions are one big pile of dung. I'm glad China will crush these religious MFs!

    July 15, 2011 at 10:58 pm | Reply
    • fred

      Do not INSULT the leligions. Dummy.

      July 16, 2011 at 6:17 am | Reply
    • wmalik

      I dont think the chinese are bothered about religions they are too busy at the moment in cyber attacks and building 7 types of the same product in inferior materials.

      July 16, 2011 at 8:14 am | Reply
    • gerry

      Does that include the stupid idiotic religion of humanistic evolution???

      July 16, 2011 at 6:10 pm | Reply
      • Skeptic

        Gerry,

        Would you please explain how evolution is a religion?

        July 17, 2011 at 2:38 am |
  7. John

    It's more likely that the Taliban was holding a close family member of Sardar Mohammed as hostage. And in exchange for assassinating Ahmed Wahli Karzai, that person would be released. That would explain the sudden change in loyalty. And, it is a tactic the Taliban has used many of times.

    July 15, 2011 at 9:48 pm | Reply
    • wmalik

      Most of these guards are in the Taliban sleeper cells, as you will see the shifting in loyalties as the war progresses.They are all Taliban that have switched sides temporarily. I'ts better to be in the enemies camp philosophy!!!

      July 16, 2011 at 8:07 am | Reply
  8. Richie

    Why do you have a section called "living with Terror" like it is a chronic disease I need meds for?

    Cause Obama care was no obstacle for my satellite trash

    July 15, 2011 at 9:34 pm | Reply
  9. Richie

    You tell me security clearance section....

    All I know is his barber kept stealing his hair to see if he was on drugs.

    Hillary, cough, cough, cough

    July 15, 2011 at 9:32 pm | Reply
  10. ukt87

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IYMKQKSV0bY

    July 15, 2011 at 8:19 pm | Reply
    • whybs

      All religions are one big pile of dung. I'm glad China will crush these religious MFs!

      Shitz heads like this Moozlim beg the practice of peeing on religious materials (especially the Koran) in hotels!

      July 15, 2011 at 11:00 pm | Reply
    • Iman Moohamud

      It is obvious this boy in the video is mentally defective. His reasons are like why the cow crossed the road. He is insane as is the religion he represents. His family was kidnapped by the Taliban and he was forced to make this video otherwise they were going to start mailing his family body parts to him bit by bit. Islam is very bad. Very very bad.

      July 16, 2011 at 5:05 am | Reply
      • Hamidullah

        Do not ever say that Islam is bad and only the Muslims kill the people all the time....
        Do you KNOW that in world war second (Adolf Hitler) caused 6 million people killed, He was not a muslim and some other issues. So if one of the Christian, Hondo, Jewish does a bad job can we judge and say their religion is bad, very very bad? That's why when a muslim does a bad action we can not say that the Islam is bad or insult the religions or some thing else. We have a saying that Islam does not have any defect, the problem and the defect is up againts the muslims not ISLAM.

        July 16, 2011 at 6:02 am |
    • Get Real

      This guys is an obious idiot. It is Islam where you are not allowed to question religion. Let's see if he can stand there and ask if mohamad was a pediophile or maybe draw a sketch of what mphamad looked like.

      July 16, 2011 at 6:30 pm | Reply
      • MyPictureOfMohammad

        8=>(_|_)

        July 19, 2011 at 9:11 pm |
  11. Smokey

    Who killed Ahmed Wali? Consensus is that the Taliban are trying to take credit for something they had no part in. So who was behind it? ISI? CIA? FSB? One of the Karzais' tribal rivals, or even someone within the family itself? Was it a personal matter between this Sardar Muhammad and his boss? It's a grand mystery indeed.

    July 15, 2011 at 8:07 pm | Reply
  12. damaion williams

    Fuck afganistan. bring da troops home. let dem moterfuckers take care of der owm problems. we have 2 take care of our own shit. why cant dey do the same? (obama 2012)

    July 15, 2011 at 8:00 pm | Reply
    • fred

      Then do it dummy, u guys just say that all the time but u dont do any thing anless u don't get a profit.
      like comming in Afghanistan.

      July 16, 2011 at 6:12 am | Reply
  13. Mtown

    I say we pull out the troops and our "money" we are donating to them. They wanna blow each other up then let them. Meanwhile we use the millions of money that we are giving them for something WE NEED...

    July 15, 2011 at 7:49 pm | Reply
  14. Jerry

    Umm...Paul, how about go on the net and check the history of Afghanistan. Unfortunately it was the Americans who messed up us 'savages' and Christianity is demonized: ur priests molest children. Islam is the most peaceful if you understand the concept, dummy.

    July 15, 2011 at 7:20 pm | Reply
    • Mtown

      Yeah most islams are blowing up each other... I get the concept....

      July 15, 2011 at 7:46 pm | Reply
    • Get Real

      That's what they went into all the south asian countries and killed millions and distroyed their idols for last 1400 years. Islam was started by a war monger (Mohamad) who liked little girls 9 years old.

      July 16, 2011 at 6:32 pm | Reply
  15. arl

    please stop demonizing islam....first you occupy their land and then expect those savage warriors to treat you well? read the history, these afghan people are in the state of war for more than a century. islam was flurishing until the afghan war. all this menace started after 1967.

    July 15, 2011 at 6:39 pm | Reply
    • paul

      Islam flourishing...please don't insult our intelligence. Those savages in Afghanistan are incapable of advancing at anything. Look at the backwards parts there, the same way as if it was 1400 years ago. islam deserves to be demonized but it is already that. No thing good has ever come out of it.

      July 15, 2011 at 7:04 pm | Reply
      • Smokey

        Fool, Afghanistan was a beautiful tourist's paradise, as calm and stable as you could wish, until the Cold War arrived there in the middle of the last century. Do you think the Afghans had all their weapons before that? They built their ancient WW1-era rifles by hand until the US and USSR began arming them to the teeth.

        July 15, 2011 at 8:11 pm |
    • James

      I don't think anyone is "demonizing" islam... some people just don't understand fully that islam and these bone heads have nothing to do with each other. The fact is that they are a group of idiots trying to take things over again. The Taliban will have nowhere to go soon and I honestly believe that, and when that day comes things will really begin to change in Afghanistan. We can all hope that the day will be soon. Oh and by the way, the U.S. helped the Afghans when they fought off the Russians back in the 70's and 80's. I personally don't think we should have ever gone to Afghanistan, but orders are orders. The military goes where they are told and fight who ever shoots at them.

      July 15, 2011 at 10:52 pm | Reply
    • nv

      Afghan was a peaceful country before Islam entered. These people were Buddhists maintaining peace. They constructed beautiful temples in Bamiyan etc. Pl visit Afghan to see countless Buddhist relics. After Islam entered Hindukush, the peace has evaporated. Countless genocides, slaughter, robbery and insecurity are the order of all the countries where Islam has entered. Every body wake up and throw this satanic sect out of the solar system.

      July 17, 2011 at 1:23 am | Reply
  16. rankno

    What is with the two bags of grain in the very front of the picture?

    July 15, 2011 at 5:44 pm | Reply
    • arl

      those are turbans

      July 15, 2011 at 6:21 pm | Reply
      • TowelHeadsAreMorons

        Those are freaking stupid towels for the Towel heads.

        July 19, 2011 at 9:13 pm |
  17. lucianne

    Why are we spending billions on people who have been doing the same thing since the Prohpet ascended into heaven to sit next to Jesus. C'mon, folks, this isn't about religion. Hasn't anyone heard of the various wars in Europe a few hundred years ago? Or doesn't anyone ready history?

    July 15, 2011 at 5:26 pm | Reply
    • Steven

      According to history books, those European wars were about religion. Dummy

      July 15, 2011 at 5:32 pm | Reply
  18. rrock

    Why do we care? This rat hole had little or nothing to do with 9/11. We should be going to war with Saudi Arabia where the terrorists came from or Spain where they planned.

    July 15, 2011 at 5:09 pm | Reply
  19. StXavier

    How many times do we the American people have to be kick in the head about how we're not going to changer things in Afhganistan. These people are NUT JOBS an believe GOD their type of GOD is on their side blessing the killing of inosent people, I say leave Afhganistan to the nut jobers an let them go around killing them selves may be the'll kill them selves off WE CAN ONLY HOPE IT WILL HAPPEN. LEAVE, LEAVE, LEAVE NOW.

    July 15, 2011 at 5:08 pm | Reply
  20. Martin

    I bet Americas Government is behind there somewhere getting their cut and making sure confusion stays throughout those countries while their own people are being fed lies through a television set.. wake up people there is a problem and it starts here in our own home..

    July 15, 2011 at 3:44 pm | Reply
    • Dan

      A trusted guard shoots his employer and it's our fault? You are apparently rather ignorant of the history of Afghanistan, friend.

      July 15, 2011 at 4:03 pm | Reply
      • Dan

        I realize that Karzai was corrupt, but you need to look into the history of teh region. Betrayal is teh name of the game. Look up "pastunwali."

        July 15, 2011 at 4:04 pm |
      • Martin

        So your going to sit there and tell me you believe that cnn is one hundred percent genuine?? lol Like they could never tell a lie!

        July 15, 2011 at 8:25 pm |
    • Steven

      Dummy

      July 15, 2011 at 5:19 pm | Reply
    • joe

      OMG...what a statement!

      July 15, 2011 at 5:40 pm | Reply
  21. joseph

    Good riddens!!!!!!!

    July 15, 2011 at 3:06 pm | Reply
    • indigo

      riddance

      July 15, 2011 at 3:52 pm | Reply
      • SpellBot

        Spell Bot!

        July 19, 2011 at 9:07 pm |
  22. joseph

    Another corrupt oppressive greedy fool bites the dust. Good riddens.

    July 15, 2011 at 3:05 pm | Reply
  23. steve

    Maybe if our country didn't get their nose in everybody's business this shit wouldn't be headlines nor would we be commenting on it.

    July 15, 2011 at 2:19 pm | Reply
  24. Zork

    The killer knew he wasn't making it out of there alive, which strongly suggests an ideological motive.

    July 15, 2011 at 2:18 pm | Reply
  25. david

    i wonder if the shooter may have chose to do this on his own and the taliban is falsly claiming respomsibility as a scare tactic....hmmmmm...i wonder...

    July 15, 2011 at 12:57 pm | Reply
    • joe

      A meteorite could land in Washington DC and the Taliban would claim responsibility!

      July 15, 2011 at 5:43 pm | Reply
  26. Johnna

    It's quite obvious that you can't trust anybody in those shiite hole third world countries, never could and never will. Let's nuke em all !!!!!!!

    July 15, 2011 at 12:55 pm | Reply
    • abc

      U gotta see a psychiatrist. You re talking like a shiite hole from 4th world.

      July 15, 2011 at 1:13 pm | Reply
      • Steven

        I think I agree with the nuke from orbit strategy. All they know is thousands of years of backstabbing and murder. We know it as Islam.

        July 15, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
    • Steven

      Turn it into Ashcanistan

      July 15, 2011 at 5:25 pm | Reply
    • WeAreAllHuman

      And you wanting to kill millions of people because of the religion they were born into is different from SOME Muslims wanting to kill millions of people because of the religion that you were born into makes you different from them how?

      July 15, 2011 at 7:57 pm | Reply

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