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Why the Haqqani Network is Not on the Foreign Terrorist Organizations List

The Politics Of Naming and Shaming

(Photo: Telestar Logistics / flickr)

Members of the Haqqani network have killed hundreds of U.S. citizens and carried out spectacular acts of terrorism, including against the U.S. embassy, NATO headquarters, the Intercontinental Hotel, the Indian embassy, and the British Council -- all in Kabul. Yet the organization is not on the U.S. list of foreign terrorist organizations. This apparent lapse is not for lack of bipartisan support: In a September letter, U.S. Senators Lindsay Graham (R–S.C.) and Kirsten Gillibrand (D–N.Y.) urged Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to add the network to the list, to “curtail logistical, financial and political support for the group’s terrorist activities.” The appropriate answer to their inquiry would seem obvious. The Haqqanis are both foreign and terrorists, after all.

In the event, Clinton punted the request; indeed, the matter is not as simple as Graham and Gillibrand seemed

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