Taliban app appears on Amazon after Google shut one down

While U.S. military forces help the Afghan government battle a resurgent Taliban, American tech firms are fighting their own war against the insurgents’ propaganda campaign.

Amazon is the latest company to find a Taliban app in its online store, CNN reported Thursday. It is unclear when the “Voice of Jihad” app appeared in the Amazon app store.

“In case Amazon . . . removes ‘Voice of Jihad,’ the Taliban released the app file on Twitter,” CNN reported. “That will allow any Android phone owner to simply load it directly.” The app featured “the latest Taliban news, videos and updates,” according to CNN.

By mid-morning Thursday, searches for the app in the Amazon app store produced no result. “All apps in the Amazon app store must adhere to our content guidelines and the app in question is no longer available from our store,” an Amazon spokesperson said. However, a Twitter link posted by “Ahmat Yar,” who publishes a pro-Taliban blog on WordPress, opened up a page with five links for downloading the app.

Voice of Jihad was in English, according to CNN. Earlier this week, Google shut down a Taliban app called “Alemarah,” which was in Pashto, the language spoken by the Pashtun people from which the Taliban largely originate. The app had showed up in the Google Play store, but it appears to have been offered for only a short time before Google took action.

An estimated 75 percent of the Afghanistan population have mobile phones. Over the past year, 6,000 Afghan security forces members, including soldiers and police, have died in the war against militants, according to the New York Times. About 10,000 U.S. troops remain in Afghanistan.

In January, the incoming commander of U.S. forces in Afghanistan agreed in a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing that the country’s security situation was deteriorating rather than improving. Since then, Taliban fighters have made substantial gains in the southern province of Helmand, a key area of the opium production that helps fund the insurgency and fuels corruption.

 

Photo:  Former Taliban fighters line up to disarm in 2012 (Wikimedia Commons/NATO)

 

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    They look like a pack of very nasty mules that just came into town. Haven’t bathed in weeks, maybe months!!!! Yikers

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