US troops defeat Taliban assault on base in Nangarhar
US soldiers defeated a Taliban assault on a US base in the eastern Afghan province of Nangarhar today.
A Taliban force estimated at "20-25 insurgents" launched a nighttime attack on Forward Operating Base Fenty in the Behsud district of Nangarhar earlier today, Master Sergeant Jason Haag, at ISAF's Joint Command, told The Long War Journal.
The Taliban force launched the attack using rocket-propelled grenades and small-arms fire, but was repelled by US troops backed by attack helicopters from an air weapons team. The counterattack killed "numerous insurgents" and wounded at least one more, who was later detained. Afghan officials said seven Taliban fighters were killed during the attack. No US or allied troops were killed during the fighting. After the battle, US troops "retrieved multiple automatic weapons, 400 7.62 mm rounds, one mortar tube, two RPG launchers and 19 RPG rounds."
The Taliban claimed credit for last night's attack and claimed that "9 invaders were killed, 7 seriously wounded besides 3 helicopters and 8 military vehicles destroyed." The claim was made on the Taliban propaganda website, Voice of Jihad. The Taliban often exaggerate the results of their operations in their press releases.
FOB Fenty was the scene of a Taliban and al Qaeda suicide assault on Nov. 13, 2010. Six Taliban fighters were killed in that attack, and several suicide vests were recovered after that attack. The Taliban claimed the attack, and wildly inflated the results of the operation.
Al Qaeda and the Pakistani terror groups Lashkar-e-Taiba, Lashkar-e-Islam, and the Movement of the Taliban in Pakistan all maintain a presence in Nangarhar province, according to an investigation by The Long War Journal. The presence of terror cells has been detected in the districts of Achin, Bati Kowt, Behsud, Chaparhar, Dara Noor, Deh Bala, Jalalabad, Khogyani, Pachir wa Agam, Sherzad, and Shinwar, or 11 of Nangarhar's 22 districts.
Since the beginning of December 2010, ISAF and Afghan special operations teams have targeted commanders associated with al Qaeda, the Movement of the Taliban in Pakistan and the Lashkar-e-Islam during raids in Nangarhar.