Thursday :: May 18, 2006

Concrete Boots On Shifting Grounds


by pessimist

Just yesterday, US officials were bragging about the successful conclusion of "The biggest-ever joint Afghan and U.S. military operation launched against Taliban-linked militants".

Reality kicked them in their soft-iron balls this morning, as "Coalition forces have had to deal with multiple firefights, two suicide car bombs and a massive rebel assault on a small village.

That isn't where the lies stopped, however:

The attack late on a police and government headquarters in the town of Musa Qala in Helmand province sparked eight hours of clashes with security forces. About a dozen police were killed and five wounded in the attack some 95 miles north-west of Kandahar, said deputy governor Amir Mohammed Akhunzaba. The interior ministry said about 40 militants were killed, though police said they had retrieved only 14 bodies.

These body retrieval numbers were essentially confirmed by a Taliban spokesman:

Taliban spokesman Qari Muhammad Yousef phoned office of the Afghan Islamic Press and said, "The firefight left 18 puppet policemen killed and wounded while one Talib fighter was also killed and five other wounded."

The high death toll being reported might well be mostly innocent civilians, as "The Taliban spokesman also added that occupation forces bombarded the area but Taliban fighters had fled the area before the bombing."

The longer this goes on, the more the world is looking at the consequences of their rash actions following King George over the cliff. Just the other day, the first Australian military casualty occured, an event I expect to heat up the debate as to whether Oz should continue to participate in the Crusade for Crude. Such a debate is already underway in Canada:

The latest fatality raises Canada's death toll in Afghanistan to 16 soldiers and one diplomat since the mission started in 2002. A recent poll suggested that a majority of Canadians were against deployment of troops in the war-torn Afghanistan. The poll, conducted by The Strategic Counsel earlier this month, found 54 percent of Canadians were against the Afghan mission. Of those, 23 percent are strongly opposed to it -- an increase of eight percentage points from the previous survey.

This situation is only going to continue to grow as the Taliban steps up spring offensive in Afghanistan. But with Iraq about to break up into three warring factions, who's noticing?

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pessimist :: 7:40 AM :: Comments (14) :: TrackBack (0) :: Digg It!