Monthly Archives: May 2006

Two days after the Kabul riot

Kabul, Afghanistan: The city of Kabul has settled down after Monday’s violent outbreak that followed a traffic accident involving a runaway U.S. military vehicle and Afghan civilians. The riots were suppressed in eight hours, and the Karzai government instituted an overnight curfew, which has been extended for Wednesday night. While many businesses were closed on […]

Combat in Southeastern Afghanistan; Mullah Dadullah not captured

The fighting in southeastern Afghanistan continues as Coalition and Afghan forces press into previously unpatroled Taliban strongholds. Over the weekend clashes occurred in Kandahar, Helmand and Ghazni provinces. These provinces have been the scene of the majority of the fighting over the past few months.

Fighting in Uruzgan; Osama bin Laden sighting in Pakistan

Satellite map of the Afghan-Pakistan border region. Click to Enlarge. The provincial border region of Kandahar, Uruzgan, and Helmand remains a hot spot in Southeastern Afghanistan. Fighting between Coalition forces and the Taliban intensified Tuesday in the Tarin Kowt District of Uruzgan. Over 24 Taliban were confirmed killed after a joint Afghan and Coalition patrol […]

Iraqi Government Forms; Recent Counterterrorism Ops

The establishment of the Iraqi government, after five long months of contentious negotiations, has dealt Zarqawi and al Qaeda in Iraq’s efforts to derail the political process. As Zarqawi stated in his 2004 letter to Osama bin Laden, once the Iraqi people begin to take control of the political and and security responsibilities, al Qaeda’s […]

Battles in Southeastern Afghanistan

Recent activity in Southeastern Afghanistan. Click to Enlarge. Coalition forces continue to maintain the offensive against the Taliban in Southeast Afghanistan. A joint task force of Afghan and Coalition security forces encountered “organized armed opposition” from the Taliban during a joint operation near the town of Azizi in Uruzgan province. Twenty Taliban were confirmed killed, […]

Fighting in Afghanistan, Talibanistan

Recent activity on the Afghan-Pakistan border. Click to Enlarge. The latest estimate of Taliban casualties during the fighting over the past few days is approaching 200, with 25 Coalition, Afghan security forces and civilians killed. The Daily Times of Pakistan reports the fighting around Kandahar City, which was initiated by two separate Coalition operations, resulted […]

The Canadian Mission in Kandahar

Map of ISAF Mission in Afghanistan. Click to Enlarge. Almost five years after the liberation of Afghanistan from the Taliban, the American public is largely unaware of the scope of NATO’s commitment to providing stability for the Afghan people and combating al Qaeda and the Taliban. Through the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), NATO plans […]

Task Force 145 Strikes in Latifiyah; Nets Abu Mustafa

Task Force 145 appears to have been busy over the weekend. In conjunction with the raid in Yusifiyah, which killed 25 al Qaeda and resulted in the downing of a Coalition helicopter and the death of two U.S. Soldiers, TF-145 struck near the town of Latifiyah. Multinational Forces – Iraq reports 15 al Qaeda were […]

The Battle of Yusifayah

Yusifiyah is yet again the focus of Coalition raids. Unnamed Coalition forces, most likely Task Force 145, slugged it out with al Qaeda in the city on Sunday. Multinational Forces – Iraq reported the strike forces killed “more than 25 terrorists, detained four, destroyed three safe houses and a vehicle loaded with weapons and ammunition.” […]

Task Force 145 Strikes Near Ramadi

Suspected locations of Task Force 145 raids on al Qaeda cells. Click to Enlarge. Task Force 145, the mix of special operations forces assigned to hunt Abu Musab al-Zarqawi and al Qaeda in Iraq leaderships and cells, appears to have struck again, this time in Julaybah, an area “identified as a terrorist safe haven” which […]

Independent Operations and the Iraqi Army

Nearly one year ago, the media questioned the “readiness” of the Iraqi Army and declared “few Iraqi battalions are operational.” This stemmed from Multinational-Forces Iraq’s attempts to establish metrics for the readiness of the Iraq military, and the media’s lack of understanding of the meaning of these metrics.

Embedding in Afghanistan

The plan to embed in Afghanistan has come to fruition. Late next week, I will be headed to Kandahar, Afghanistan, and will embed with the Canadian Army, and will spend about three weeks in country. The activity in and around Kandahar has been intense as the Taliban are attempting to reestablish control of southeastern Afghanistan. […]

Task Force 145 may have struck again in Samarra

Suspected locations of raids on al Qaeda cells. Click to Enlarge. Over the past month, Task Force 145, the special operations unit designated to hunt Abu Musab al-Zarqawi and other high value al Qaeda targets, has dismantled al Qaeda cells in the cities of Yusifiyah and Balad. It appears Task Force 145 has struck at […]

Alazam 5 Rockets and the Zarqawi Tape

Schematic of an Alazan rocket In last week’s posting, The Military & Propaganda Messages in Zarqawi’s Tape, I pointed out the missiles that were so prominent in video were crude and ineffective weapons as the rockets were small and unguided. While this is true in a conventional sense, it turns out the weapons depicted in […]

Hunting Zarqawi and Tales of the Tape (Updated)

In today’s weekly media briefing from Baghdad, Major General Rick Lynch stated Coalition and Iraqi forces are closing in on Zarqawi and his network. “We believe it is only a matter of time until Zarqawi is taken down. It’s not if, but when,” said Maj. Gen. Lynch, “He’s willing to pull his people from outside […]

al Qaeda’s Assassination Program in Anbar

al Qaeda continues its campaign of targeted assassinations against Sunni leaders cooperating with the elected government of Iraq. Today, a suicide bomber put Maamoon Sami Rasheed al-Awani, the governor of Anbar province, in its sights and attempted to kill him with a suicide car bomb. al-Awani survived the attack, but ten Iraqi bystanders were killed […]

Terrorist Cell Dismantled Near Balad

Suspected locations of raids on al Qaeda cells. Click to Enlarge. Two weeks ago, Task Force 145 struck at what was believed to be the hideout of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi in the city of Yusifiyah. Five terrorists were killed in the raid, and Coalition forces discovered suicide vests and suicide notes along with various weapons. […]

Safe Havens & Iraq

The debate over Iraq being a safe haven and training ground, or a magnet and killing ground for terrorists has been ongoing since the inception of al Qaeda’s terrorist attacks in the summer of 2003. The reality is there is merit to both arguments. al Qaeda has managed to establish enclaves for small periods of […]