Afghanistan: September 4, 2003


A 12 day operation against a large group of Taliban ended. At least 124 of the Taliban were killed. A few were captured, but the rest of the 200-300 armed men got away over the mountains, were blown to bits by bombs or got away injured and died somewhere else. Equipment, weapons and documents were captured. Some of the Taliban had driven in from Pakistan, and met up with others in Zabul province, some 300 kilometers southwest of the capital. The Taliban tried to set up a camp, but US reconnaissance efforts (airborne, satellite and informants on the ground) soon located them. A force of at least a thousand troops, mostly from the Afghan army, but also involving at least a company from the 10th mountain division and some Special Forces. moved in to block escape routes. Then air power was called in and did most of the killing. Five Afghan soldiers were killed, and one US Special Forces soldier died because of a fall as he was using ropes to move down a mountain. Some of the Taliban were local Afghans, but many were Pakistanis recruited in Pakistan.


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