Afghanistan: July 7, 2003


The central government's budget for this year is $550. It expects to raise $200 million of that from import and export taxes collected at the border. But local warlords have been grabbing most of that revenue. But this year the central government has leaned on the provincial leaders to hand over a large chunk of that money and in the last three months, the central government has gotten $56 million from the provincial governments.

In the southeast, 800 American and 500 Italian soldiers launched a major operation to search for Taliban and al Qaeda. American commanders noted that the Taliban have changed their tactics, cutting back on direct attacks (with RPGs or AK-47s) and using more landmines and bombs. The direct attacks usually led to heavy casualties among the attackers and few, or no, casualties on the Americans. 


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