Afghanistan: March 12, 2002


During the first ten days of March, France refused to send its aircraft to attack some targets assigned by US war planners, saying that these targets were too close to civilians. They did not refuse all of their missions, striking a dozen targets near Gardez. Sixteen French Super Etendards flew from the carrier Charles de Gaulle while six Mirage 2000s flew from a base in Kyrghizstan.--Stephen V Cole

Australia has about 150 members of its Special Air Service deployed in Afghanistan; about 100 of those were involved in Operation Anaconda. The Australians said they had called in US air strikes over the last few months that killed hundreds of enemy troops, but that there was no evidence that any of those air strikes caused civilian casualties. In the incident in which a US helicopter was shot down with six soldiers killed, it was an Australian SAS team, perched on a nearby mountainside, that called in the air strikes that kept the 36 survivors from being overrun.--Stephen V Cole

In Kuwait, police arrested seven Afghan men trying to sneak across the border from Iran. The men admitted they were Taliban.




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