Spy programmes no secret to Taliban
The Washington Post in Kabul
Like the rest of the world, Taliban officials learned last week of the US government's large-scale surveillance of citizens and foreigners, including access to a massive amount of information gathered from online communications.
Unlike many Americans, the Taliban was not surprised.
"We knew about their past efforts to trace our system," Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid said. "We have used our technical resources to foil their efforts and have been able to stop them from succeeding so far."
The Taliban, which maintains a website and an active presence on Twitter, is a frequent victim of hackers - which insurgent officials have long assumed are working for the US government. For them, the surveillance revelation only justified their anger at American meddling online.
"They have hacked our site and used a forged site as if it was ours," Mujahid said.
Some Afghan analysts were not surprised by the Taliban response. "I don't think it will disturb them," said Daud Sultanzoi, a political activist and former Afghan parliamentarian. "They're like the Energizer bunny - they keep going and going."