Archive for the ‘Taliban’ Category

One of my Afghanistani friends has written a horrifying article about what is happening in Afghanistan under the control of President Karsai, and I don’t like it. No, not one bit!

Mullah Abdul Salam A Terror Loving Murdering
Low-Life Lunatic and Massacring Maniac
Is Now The New Chief Of Musa-Qala District

By: Mohammad Khairy

From the beginning of 2002, many Taliban top commanders were freed from Guantanamo Bay and Afghanistan’s jails by assurance of Karzai and his Pashtunsit team. Most of these commanders are implicated for civilian killings, women trafficking, raping, looting and imprisoning non-Pashtun citizens. The freed Taliban commanders rejoined Al Qaeda or were hired in many different position in the current government.

Mullah Abdul Salaam, a first degree murderer for the massacre of civilians and a former Taliban governor of Oruzgan Province and a senior Taliban commander was appointed on January 7,08 by President Karzai as the new chief of Musa-Qala district after US-troops and NATO recaptured it from the hand of Taliban. [Continue reading.]

This is an awful situation. All males are being summarily executed just so they do not have time to raise up against these animals. And we are allowing this? Hurry up with those 3,000 Marines!

I am very saddened. Please pray for these men, women and children who do not enjoy the same freedoms that you and I do. Pray for their lives, safety, and hope. Also pray for God to crush al Qaida and the Taliban. Those freakin’ animals.

Hat-tip: Welcome to Mohammad Fahim Khairy’s Blog.
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Source: US CentCom.

31 October 2007
By Sgt. 1st Class Jacob Caldwell
173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team

KUNAR PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Under the cover of darkness, soldiers from Company A, 2nd Battalion, 503rd Infantry (Airborne), air-assaulted about three miles south of their forward operating bases in the Pech River Valley earlier this month as part of Operation Rock Avalanche.

Operation Rock Avalanche was a multiple-company mission that ran Oct. 19-25 in the Chapa Dara, Korengal, Shuryak and Pech river valleys. Participating were “Able,” “Battle” and “Chosen” companies from 2nd Battalion; Bravo Company, 1st Battalion, 508th Infantry (Airborne); and multiple companies from the Afghan National Army’s 201st Corps. The companies were positioned into different areas of Kunar province at different times, hoping to flush insurgents out of one area into another, where U.S. and Afghan forces would be waiting for them.

Working from a vantage point 7,500 feet up, overlooking the Shuryak and Pech valleys, Able Company’s four-day mission was to locate and destroy insurgent command-and-control and logistical elements operating in that area, Army Capt. Louis Frketic, the company’s commander, said.

After setting up a perimeter and establishing a command post on the top of Phase Line Ridgeway, 2nd Platoon was dispatched to the nearby village of Aybot. Previous intelligence had suggested that Taliban leaders might be holed up in that area. “We were looking for two named (high-value targets). One of them is the commander of the entire Shuryak forces, and the other guy is an IED specialist,” Frketic said. “We searched their compounds, and they were not in there or in the area.”

Frketic and his paratroopers were not dissuaded. A low-level voice-intercept team from Company B, 173rd Special Troops Battalion (Airborne), was tasked to Able Company for the mission. The team had begun listening to Taliban radio traffic as soon as they hit the ground and already were getting “a bead” on insurgents operating in the surrounding valleys. The team was an invaluable asset, one that Frketic said he uses every chance he gets to collect intelligence on the enemy. “A lot of times we will start getting locations, and then we will pick up names,” he said. “It is usually specific to that cell what kind of things they are talking about. Sometimes they will start talking about people, fighters, locations, ammo, or weapons systems that they have.”

Even the smallest details, including specific words used, can yield valuable information, Frketic said. “A couple days ago, right before the mission started, we heard a cell talking about their fighters and their leaders in the terms of soldiers and officers. Other times, we’ll hear them talk about fighters and commanders. The one talking about officers and soldiers, that is a professional organization. Little details like that are very critical in my mind,” he explained.

With so much Afghan National Army and U.S. military activity on the surrounding mountains and in the surrounding valleys, the Taliban were never sure of Able Company’s position and never mounted an attack on the company. The voice intercept team used the time to continue to collect intelligence on enemy in the area. The formerly suspected enemy locations were now known.

Around noon Oct. 24, Frketic put that information to use and launched soldiers from 1st Platoon, Company D, into action. The platoon is a heavy-weapons platoon attached to Able Company for the deployment and commonly referred to as the Dragon Platoon. They had air-assaulted onto the ridgeline with their MK19 grenade launchers and M2 machine guns. A mortar team with an 81 mm tube from Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 2-503rd, also was put into action.

Their fire destroyed one command-and-control node operating in the Shuryak Valley. But destroying the enemy position was probably the easiest part of the mission for the MK19 gun team, said Spc. David Hooker, from Palestine, Ark., and a Dragon Platoon member. “I’ve never air-assaulted in with a MK19 before,” Hooker said. “But since we just set in and manned a blocking position, it was OK.”

“The weight is the biggest challenge, getting it in and out,” he said. An MK19 without a tripod weighs 75 pounds, and ammo cans weigh between 40 and 60 pounds each, depending on the number of rounds in them. Many cans were brought for this mission.

The mortar team, one of the busiest in the battalion, also spent most of the day putting rounds on target. The team averages firing more than 1,000 rounds per month. “As far as firing goes, this is hands-down the most intense deployment that I have been on,” said Army Staff Sgt. Brandon Thomas, of Nashville, Tenn.

While Howitzers are available for fire missions throughout Kunar province, the mortar teams are able to react the quickest when indirect fire is needed, Thomas said. “We have eyes on a lot of the targets, and our response is a little bit quicker,” he said. “The channels to clear the 155 go all the way through battalion and then back through their fires. Ours are cleared right here. If we are in direct contact, I can engage freely.” [It’s about damn time!]

The number of rounds fired combined with the danger of their job has earned the team the respect of Thomas and the unit’s leadership. “These guys are awesome,” he said. “Everybody has been put in for valor awards.”

The mortar team and the pit in which they work are favorite targets of the Taliban, making it a dangerous job. “There is no overhead cover, and they stand out there and fire throughout the entire engagement and also in support after,” Thomas said. “It’s pretty remarkable what they do.”

Early on the morning of Oct. 25, members of Able Company began what would end up as a 10-hour trek down treacherous, slippery and steep terrain back to their base — no small feat for even the most fit paratrooper, yet a regular occurrence for soldiers in Kunar province.

“We go on ruck marches into the mountains every other day or every third day,” said Staff Sgt. Brian Mading, from Bonita Springs, Fla., and a member of Headquarters Platoon. “The first couple are tough. Then, of course, the more you are doing it, the more you get built up.” “The guys that come here right out of basic or other units usually get broke down pretty quick or get into it pretty quick depending on what their physical fitness level was before,” he said.

All of the gear these paratroopers carry is heavy: helmet, protective vests, rucksacks, weapons, ammunition, and water. It makes packing before the mission extremely important, leaving little room for extra cold-weather gear or even extra food. During the trip down the mountain, the Able Company soldiers had hoped to “drop in” on some insurgents the low-level voice intercept team had confirmed were hiding out in villages in that area. But none were spotted, and no contact was made.

Frketic stressed that wasn’t a problem. “Those villages are only a three- to four-hour walk from our base,” he said. “They’ll be getting visits from us again soon.”

Wow. Our guys are fantastic! I wonder if the people of those villages truly approve of the Taliban or if they are afraid of them? Keep up the great work guys. You have much support back home. Thank you for your service, and come home victorious and soon.

Photo – Army Sgt. Chad Mohr (left) watches rounds land on target as Army Spc. David Hooker fires the MK19 machine gun at a known insurgent position Oct. 24, 2007, during Operation Rock Avalanche. The “Dragon Platoon” soldiers of Destined Company, 2nd Battalion, 503rd Infantry (Airborne), were occupying a ridgeline between the Pech and Shuryak river valleys in Afghanistan’s Kunar province. U.S. Army photo.

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This is a must read. It is an amazing article of our men and the Iraqi men working side-by-side so the Iraqis can achieve the knowledge to run their own country and our men can come home. This is also an open trackback weekend. I’m not expecting too many, because I haven’t received too many except from some loyal friends. I do, however, would appreciate it if you would at least read it. For them.

Posts I have trackbacked to: The Florida Masochist and The Florida Masochist, Church and State, Right Truth,123beta, Big Dog’s Blog, Blog @ MoreWhat.com, The World According to Carl, Blue Star Chronicles, Leaning Straight Up, The Amboy Times, A Blog For All, Stageleft, Shadowscope, The Yankee Sailor, Nuke’s, and CommonSenseAmerica, thanks to Linkfest Haven Deluxe.

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8 Aug 07
By Army Sgt. Brandon Aird
173rd ABCT Public Affairs

NURISTAN PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Sailing through the clouds Soldiers from the Afghan National Army and Task Force Saber air-assaulted onto landing zone Shetland July 19 during Operation Saray Has.

The LZ was located in a large meadow near the top of a mountain in here. Local Afghans use the area as a grazing pasture for livestock, while Taliban extremists often use it to stage attacks against TF Saber.

The spot the Soldiers from Headquarters and Headquarters Troop, 1st Squadron, 91st Cavalry Regiment (Airborne), 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team, and the Afghan 3rd Kandak, 201st Corps landed on was roughly 10,000 feet above sea level. The air-assault was part of a reconnaissance mission to determine the point of origin for rockets, which were fired at Forward Operating Base Naray that injured several Soldiers a few weeks prior.

“We came up here to confirm or deny enemy-use of the hilltop,” said Army 1st Lt. Chris Richelderfer, HHT executive officer. “Seven Soldiers were injured from that attack,” said Army Command Sgt. Maj. Victor Pedraza, command sergeant major of TF Saber.

After air-assaulting onto the mountain, a patrol was dispatched to an adjacent mountain to scout out the terrain and possible enemy positions. The rest of the Soldiers secured the area while Army Capt. Nathan Springer, HHT commander, along with the Naray district Sub-Gov. SamShu Rochman spoke with the local populace. “I wanted the local government to have the lead when talking with the locals,” said Springer.

Rochman spoke with civilians from the villages of Badermashal and Cherigal about security in the area. While Rochman and Springer were speaking with villagers, wood smugglers accidentally walked their donkeys carrying stolen wood into the meadow.

“The wood on the donkeys had been stolen from the Naray lumber yard two days before our mission,” said Springer. Rochman was adamant about bringing the wood smugglers to justice. The wood smugglers were brought off the mountain, back to Naray to face prosecution.

Operation Saray Has was more productive than both Springer and Rochman had planned. “It validated the need to conduct future operations in the area to deny [Taliban extremist] that terrain,” said Springer.

Photo – Army Capt. Nathan Springer, Headquarters and Headquarters Troop Commander, 1st Squadron, 91st Cavalry Regiment (Airborne), 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team, looks up the mountain July 19 while on patrol during Operation Saray Has. During Operation Saray Has, two rocket positions were found that had been previously used to attack Forward Operating Base Naray. Photo by Sgt. Brandon Aird.

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31 July 07
By Sgt. Brandon Aird
173rd ABCT Public Affairs

KUNAR PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Paratroopers from the 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team spent July 22-28 in Dangam district in Kunar province near the Pakistan border. The area is surrounded by lush farms that thrive from a stream flowing through the valley.

The Soldiers are from Red Platoon, Charlie Troop, 1st Squadron, 91st Cavalry Regiment (Airborne), and they were in the area to help fortify the position of an Afghan National Police station and also to establish and reinforce observations posts with the Afghan National Army on nearby hilltops.

The OPs help monitor and stop Taliban extremist movement in the area. Red Platoon named the OPs after one Soldier’s mom, another’s daughter, Sandra and Haden respectively and famous TV stars:, Chuck Norris and Mr. T. “We thought of the baddest dudes we knew,” said Army Staff Sgt. David Benoit, a squad leader in Red Platoon. “Naming OPs like we do helps keep morale up.”

Even though the atmosphere in Red Platoon is a little laid back, the Soldiers take their jobs seriously. From OPs Norris and Mr. T, the platoon observed cross-border activity, called for and adjusted indirect fires, and engaged the enemy with direct fire.

“Our mission was to establish a joint security station in the Dangam area with the Afghan National Police and Afghan National Army,” said Army 1st Lt. Jesus Rubio, Red Platoon leader. “We’re also out here to get situational awareness of the area and build friendships with the local leaders.”

The district center of Dangam is a sign of progress for the local ANP. The center has a store, mosque, police station and a school for girls and boys. It also has computers and internet capabilities.

Red Platoon has built up the area around the ANP station to better safeguard against attacks from Taliban extremists. The district center fortifications are just a small piece of the mission. The observation posts that Red Platoon maintains also help build cohesion between the Soldiers and the local populace. “We met the new Afghan Border Patrol commander while we were out at Mr. T,” said Benoit. “A local villager walked all the way up the mountain to tell us the whole valley was talking about us. Everyone was very excited we were up here, he told us.”

Another benefit of establishing OPs throughout the valley is the intelligence that was gathered. “We observed the bad guys moving on the mountain,” said Benoit. “We also got names of smugglers. We definitely laid the grounds for long-term relationships with the locals.”

Red Platoon is in the initial phase of helping build up the district center. Future joint operations will continue for the next 14 months that Red Platoon will be in Afghanistan.

Numerous times at OPs and at the district center, the local village elders would invite the Soldiers over to their houses for food and tea. “The Afghans treated us like kings at Mr. Ts,” said Benoit. “It was awesome.”

Photo – Paratroopers from Red Platoon, Charlie Troop, 1st Squadron, 91st Cavalry Regiment (Airborne), navigate to Observation Post Chuck Norris July 25 in Dangam, Kunar province. Photo by Sgt. Brandon Aird.

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Bill Roggio is an excellent writer who decided he was not going to write about those things which he did not have first hand experience, so he suited up and became an embed both in Iraq and Afghanistan. (He’s had experience from before, but he just felt compelled to do this.) His latest article (I think he is home now) is wonderful news written this morning or very late last night.

Qari Faiz Mohammad killed in a raid in Helmand province

Afghan and ISAF have been conducting major offensives up and down the Helmand River Valley in the northern portion of the province over the past several months. Major ground and air strikes have been ongoing in the Musa Qala, Kajaki, Nari Saraj, and Sangin districts in Helmand province, as well as in the Ghorak district in Kandahar and in southwestern Uruzgan. Coalition forces have been attempted to clear the Taliban stronghold and reopen the vital Kajaki Dam. The Taliban openly control the Musa Qala district. Upwards of 150 Taliban fighters have been killed in strikes in the region during the past week. (Please continue reading at Bill’s The Fourth Rail.

Such wonderful news! I hope you have not forgotten that we are still in Afghanistan. I hope you have not forgotten why. If you do remember, then you should know that when we removed them from power they would need a place a to go. THAT is why they are in Iraq. To join in the fight for our very existence.

Why do I say, “…our very existence”? The Taliban and al Qaida are interchangeable names they call one another. This is to give some of the terrorists cover. Do not be fooled. Now that that’s cleared up, let us turn our heads towards reason, shall we?

If they need somewhere to go, they will find a place to go. Right? What will they do once they get there? Will they continue the war they have waged upon us? YOU BETCHA.

No matter when, where, who, what and no one gives a flying hoot about why, the fight will continue. They want every Christian, Jew, Atheist, Agnostic, Hindu, non-proper Muslim, and everyone else who does not subscribe to their way of interpreting the Koran DEAD. Are we clear on this now? Good. Have a nice day.
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This operation was successful in that the head of the Security Division went along with them, he spoke to the people to calm their fears, he told them he was there to get rid of the Taliban and to provide security, and he also wanted them to know they should build their own city government from which they should have one representative to speak to him so that he could help them with their needs. Wow. I’d say that’s a big first step, eh?

Source: CentCom and reposted @ DoD Daily News-2.

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