Afghanistan: June 21, 2004


Although about a quarter of the armed Taliban operating in southern and eastern Afghanistan have been killed or captured, the rest of them are still trying to gain control of villages or towns. They have been unsuccessful so far. More tribes and clans are openly anti-Taliban, and American and Afghan army troops are more active in searching for, and chasing, the groups of armed Taliban. It's Summer now, and there's plenty of foliage in the hills and valleys, making it easier for the Taliban groups to hide. But not as easy to hide as they think, because of the heat detecting cameras used by American aircraft and UAVs.  The typical Taliban combat unit contains 30-40 men. Sometimes they move on foot or horseback through the hills. Many prefer to move in small groups by truck or SUV from one pro-Taliban village to another. When the Taliban think they are safely hidden under trees or tall grass, they are showing up clearly to the heat detecting camera in the American aircraft overhead. 


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