Taliban leader discards U.S. attempts to lure away fighters with money

carl_levinA top Taliban political leader delivered a message Friday to President Obama, calling his effort to lure away Taliban fighters with money "an old weapon that has failed already."

"The Mujahedeen of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan are not mercenaries and employed gunmen like the armed men of the invaders and their surrogates," Mullah Brader Akhund said in the statement. "This war will come to an end when all invaders leave our country and an Islamic government based on the aspirations of our people is formed in the country."

Akhund is the deputy emir of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, which is the political arm of the Taliban.

He was referring to the Taliban reintegration provision, part of the $680 billion defense appropriation bill that Obama signed Wednesday to pay for military operations in the 2010 economic year.

The provision would separate local Taliban from their leaders, paying the fighters to quit the organization, replicating a program used to neutralize the insurgency against Americans in Iraq, according to the Sen. Carl Levin, chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee.

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