The Afghan Taliban likes to say, “Americans may own the watches. But we’ve got the time.” That’s why the terror group is thrilled to see Stanley McChrystal exit, commander Sirajuddin Haqqani tells the Daily Beast—it gives the Taliban even more time. American generals talk a big game before coming to Afghanistan, Haqqani explains, and realize the hopeless reality of the situation only on arrival. He believes McChrystal spoke out because he felt defeated and wanted to be relieved of duty.
“I was sure he’d have to face the consequences,” Haqqani says. His insubordination “would have extreme negative impacts on US and NATO troops in the field.” He adds he was thrilled with the story the Pentagon planted in the New York Times about Afghanistan’s mineral wealth. Earlier in the conflict, “the Afghan people were reluctant to give us shelter,” he explains. “But now they realize the US invaded their country under the pretext of terrorism, whereas in fact they wanted to loot precious minerals.”