Insurgents have targeted Kabul landmarks before, but this attack’s proximity to the city’s most secure zone raises questions about Taliban infiltration into even the most sensitive ranks.
The claim adds to a series of mixed messages that are complicating the Taliban's efforts to become an accepted, legitimate political force in Afghanistan's government.
A resurgent Taliban took responsibility for the attack on the British Council in Kabul, which came on the anniversary of Afghanistan's independence from Britain nearly a century ago.
Navy SEALs and Afghan troops were killed over the weekend in a helicopter crash south of Kabul. Navy SEALs, along with other US special forces, have been very involved in the war on terrorism.
The Taliban claimed responsibility for Saturday's deadly crash of a US military helicopter, and many Afghans say they doubt NATO's ability to turn back what appears to be fresh momentum for the Taliban.
NATO helicopter crash: 31 US special operation troops and seven Afghan commandos were killed in a NATO helicopter crash that is being investigated.
Jan Mohammed Khan, a powerful ally of President Hamid Karzai, is the latest casualty in a string of assassinations that undermine NATO’s claims that the situation is improving.
Local journalists in the targeted Afghan province say they have no knowledge of the Haqqani leader or of an airstrike. But the quick response to the InterContinental attack has given a peek into the US approach in coming years.
Neither Afghan nor American observers expect the Kabul attack on the InterContinental Hotel to shut down the peace process.
While last night's deadly suicide raid on Kabul's InterContinental Hotel showcased Taliban capabilities, early details also indicate some success in the new model of having Afghan forces take more of a lead on security.