The Daily Beast has interviewed two of the men freed in the prison break we covered earlier today. One interviewee, Mullah Asadullah Akhund, described the escape in detail, while an anonymous commander was quoted as saying, “We are poor in technology, but with the help of All Mighty Allah we embarrassed the enemy with all its technology and weapons.”
Akhund didn’t know of the break until someone tugged on his toe at 2am the night of the escape. The tunnel was built by the Taliban and its supporters.
working like ants for more than five months to dig the tunnel from inside a sympathizer’s house, secretly removing the earth bit by bit in pickups, tractor-pulled trailers and even donkey carts.
At one point as he moved through the tunnel, Akhund feared it would collapse. He says he felt a rumbling and some dirt falling from the tunnel’s roof when a heavy truck moved along the highway overhead. At the tunnel’s exit, he says there were five or six Taliban suicide bombers wearing explosive vests and carrying heavy weapons, guiding the men as they emerged from the hole in the house’s floor to pickup trucks, buses, and motorcycles for their final getaway. Akhund was taken away in a pickup (its lights switched off) with 10 other escapees on a 20-minute drive to a Taliban safe house in the city
The original plan, the commander says, was that the suicide bombers would go into the jail through the tunnel after the last men had escaped and wait for the guards and officials to discover that the political prisoner wing was empty. They would then blow themselves up, killing everyone. But that plan was aborted at the last minute.
Furthermore, a Taliban website delivered this message today: “Faith has overcome and defeated technology for the second time”, referring to a prison break in 2008 that was done with more force than stealth.