Marines confident on Marja


Marines and sailors with Company L, 3rd Battalion, 4th Marine Regiment, patrol the area outside Now Zad, Afghanistan, with members of the Afghan National Army and Afghan National Police. Photo by Corporal Zachary Nola.

The US Marine Corps is telegraphing its next punch in Helmand province. After encountering success in securing much of southern and central Helmand province, with the exception of the region south of Khanishan, including the lawless border town of Baramcha, the Marines are setting their sights on the Taliban stronghold of Marja. From Reuters:

“Well it’s pretty obvious, there’s only one place left: that’s Marjah. I don’t think its any great leap of logic to say where we’re going next,” said Brigadier General Larry Nicholson, commander of all the Marines in southern Afghanistan.

“We’re bringing in 10,000 Marines. It’s not a secret. There’s only one place left in the entire area of operations where the enemy is at,” he said.

“We’re preparing for a fight,” said Nicholson. “Really the enemy has three options in Marjah.”

“One is to stay and fight and probably die. The second one is to make peace with his government and reintegrate. And the third one is to try to flee, in which case we’ll probably have some people out there waiting on them as well,” he said.

The fight for Marja, if the Taliban does indeed stand its ground, is being billed as Afghanistan’s Fallujah. See this post at LWJ from May 2009 for more information on Marja.

Bill Roggio is a Senior Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and the Editor of FDD's Long War Journal.

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  • KaneKaizer says:

    Hopefully retaking Marja will go a long way toward regaining the momentum in Afghanistan.

  • ArneFufkin says:

    Aren’t Marines pretty much confident about everything they do? ;-D

  • My2cents says:

    I like the line “And the third one is to try to flee, in which case we’ll probably have some people out there waiting on them as well,” Hope they can successfully carry it out.


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