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February 12, 2010

Big, Big Offensive Begins in Afghanistan-- Largest Since Start of War

Prayers for our boys. Kick their asses and be safe.

Roughly 15,000 American, Afghan and NATO forces began an assault late Friday on the Taliban in the central Helmand town of Marjah in what senior military commanders are calling the largest operation since the start of the Afghanistan war.

Officials in the area have been signaling the offensive for weeks with hopes that innocent civilians and dispassionate Taliban fighters would flee the area. Commanders are stressing the importance of protecting the population rather than simply killing the resistance. Yet there have been reports civilians are having trouble getting out. "They (Taliban) don't allow families to leave. Families can only leave the village when they are not seen while leaving", Qari Mohammad Nabi, a Marjah resident, said Friday shortly before the invasion.

The objective of Operation Moshtarak, which means "together" in Dari, is to secure the region from narcoterrism and establish basic services under supervision of the Afghan government, a senior defense official told Fox. To do that, Afghan and NATO forces need to defeat the remaining insurgents and drastically reduce the number of heroin producing crops that fund the Taliban. U.S. commanders are confident they'll win the fight, but removing the poppy will prove harder than the battle.

I've never understood why the hell we're not just buying the poppy crops. Expensive, yes, but a small price against the costs of war.

Thanks to TCLS.


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posted by Ace at 06:02 PM

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