By Abdullah Qazi / 2004
Ali is a powerful military commander from eastern Afghanistan. The Americans enlisted him to lead the ground battle against Osama bin Laden’s fighters in Tora Bora in late 2001. During the Soviet war, Ali, who is from the Pashai tribe, was a low-level commander in Hezb-i-Islami (Yunis Khalis faction) who helped kick the Soviets out of his village. Eventually, he rose up to become a powerful military commander and an important leader in the Pashai community. During the war against the Taliban, he was aligned with Ahmad Shah Masood. After the removal of the Taliban from power, he was appointed as the Jalalabad police chief. He recently resigned from his position as police chief in order to run for a seat in parliament. He was born in 1964, and speaks Pashai, Pashto, Dari, Urdu, and is even learning a little English.