U.S. kills ISIS leader: A U.S. airstrike has killed the leader of the Pakistani and Afghan branch of ISIS, the Pentagon said this week. Qari Hekmatullah, an ethnic Uzbek expelled by the Taliban for his extreme brutality, was a top commander of the Islamic State in Khorasan. Local officials in Jowzjan province said Hekmatullah was known for his hard-line rule: He banned TV, beheaded opponents, and once publicly displayed a bag stuffed with dismembered remains as a warning. IS-K has been pummeled in recent years by targeted U.S. strikes and attacks by Afghan government ground troops supported by U.S. special operations forces. It has lost many of its “emirs” and much of the territory it once commanded. The Taliban has also been battling the group in northern Afghanistan.