[Mil.com] The overall commander of U.S. forces in Afghanistan and the Mideast made the stunning admission Tuesday that the U.S. had given limited support to the Taliban in its own fight against ISIS.
Marine Gen. Kenneth Frank McKenzie, head of U.S. Central Command, did not say what form of help the Taliban was given -- whether it was airstrikes, intelligence or simply a temporary cessation of U.S. attacks.
"There was very limited support from us, and I would characterize that as very limited support," he said.
In testimony before the House Armed Services Committee, McKenzie also did not say when or where the support was given to the insurgent group, whose stated goal for more than 18 years has been to drive the U.S. from Afghanistan.
However, McKenzie suggested that assistance to the Taliban may have come into play in remote areas of Afghanistan's southeastern Nangarhar province against the ISIS offshoot called Islamic State-Khorasan Province, or ISIS-K.
"Over the last several months in eastern Afghanistan, we've watched the Taliban compress and crush ISIS presence on the ground in southern Nangarhar province, and they've been very effective doing that," McKenzie said.
"It was a bloody mess, but they did it. In fact, ISIS really now no longer holds ground in Nangarhar province," McKenzie said."
At a later Pentagon briefing, Rear Adm. William Byrne, vice director of the Joint Staff, declined to comment on McKenzie's statements but said a main goal of U.S. policy was to rid Afghanistan of both ISIS and al-Qaida.
"I don't have any specifics to provide you [on McKenzie] but that's the hope, in that every force there is countering ISIS. Every force there is countering al-Qaida," Byrne said.
In his House testimony, McKenzie also expressed skepticism that the Taliban would keep their part of the bargain with the U.S. to allow for the reduction of U.S. forces in Afghanistan to 8,600 by this summer and a complete withdrawal over 14 months.
Under the deal between U.S. special envoy Zalmay Khalilzad and Taliban leaders in Doha, Qatar last month, a seven-day "reduction in violence" was agreed to and was to be followed by talks between the Taliban and the Kabul government on a final peace settlement.
However, McKenzie said that the Taliban were continuing attacks on Afghan forces in violation of the agreement with the U.S.
He said the U.S. troop reductions were conditions-based, and if the Taliban continue attacks, "my advice would be not to continue that reduction."
[KhaamaPress] The Afghan forces confiscated an AUG rifle and nearly 90,000 thousand rounds of ammunition during a raid in western Herat ...a venerable old Persian-speaking city in western Afghanistan, populated mostly by Tadjiks, which is why it's not as blood-soaked as areas controlled by Pashtuns... province.
According to a statement released by Ministry of Interior (MoI), the security forces confiscated the weapon and ammunition during a raid in Guzara district of Herat.
The statement further added the security forces seized 89,900 rounds of ammunition including 35,000 rounds of M-16 ammunition and 16,000 rounds of Ak-47 ammunition.
The Ministry of Interior also added that the security forces discovered the weapon and ammunition from a truck and arrested the driver of the vehicle.
The anti-government armed hard boy groups have not commented in this regard so far.
AUG “a semi-convertible ambidextrous rifle platform with an adjustable short-stroke, gas-piston operation chambered for 5.56x45mm (.223 Remington) ammunition in stock 10-, 30- or 42-round magazines.” Only $2000 on the open market.
9000/42~2142 magazines. WOW
President George H.W. Bush banned the AUG via an executive order under the 1989 Assault Weapon Import ban. Six years into the ban, AUG buyers gained a reprieve as cosmetic changes to the carbine’s design allowed importation once again...Things that make you go huh.
[ToloNews] As the Afghan forces maintain a defense-only stance towards the Taliban ...mindless ferocity in a turban... following the official reduction in violence period, the Ministry of Interior (MoI) on Tuesday said the Taliban conducted 32 attacks in 15 provinces over the last 24 hours.
The Interior Ministry front man Nusrat Rahimi said the attacks were conducted on civilians and security forces members.
"Two civilians and five security force members were killed in the attacks," Rahimi said. He added that 16 civilians and 12 security force members were maimed in the attacks.
According to Rahimi, the security forces conducted defensive operations in which eight Taliban fighters were killed and a would-be jacket wallah was killed in Kandahar before reaching his target.
Helmand ...an Afghan province populated mostly by Pashtuns, adjacent to Injun country in Pak Balochistan... governor Yasin Khan said that the Taliban have continued their attacks after the end of the weeklong reduction in violence. But he added the violence has been slightly reduced in Helmand compared to the past.
"When they started the attacks, we also decided to respond," he said.
The Taliban has not commented on the Interior Ministry’s statement.
[Ynet] Three service members were killed, including two Americans, and a dozen more were injured when a barrage of rockets were fired at a military base in Iraq, U.S. officials said Wednesday.
One of the officials said five service members were seriously wounded and evacuated from the Camp Taji base and seven others were still being evaluated. Buildings on the base were in flames. Several other U.S. officials confirmed that U.S. troops had been killed and injured, but did not provide numbers. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity to give details of the attack ahead of a public announcement.
Army Col. Myles Caggins, a U.S. military spokewman in Iraq, said on Twitter that more than 15 small rockets hit Iraq’s Camp Taji base. He provided no details. Another U.S. official said that as many as 30 rockets were fired from a truck launcher, and 18 hit the base.
Officials did not say what group they believe launched the rocket attack, but Kataib Hezbollah or another Iranian-backed Shia militia group is likely.
[Mil.com] The two service members killed during a mission to eliminate an ISIS stronghold in a mountainous region of north-central Iraq have been identified as members of Marine Corps Forces Special Operations Command.
Gunnery Sgt. Diego D. Pongo, 34, of Simi Valley, California, and Capt. Moises A. Navas, 34, of Germantown, Maryland, died Sunday while on a mission with Iraqi forces in the Makhmur Mountains, south of Erbil.
Following their deaths, more troops were sent into the region on a recovery mission that became a brutal fight, according to information released by Operation Inherent Resolve.
Posted by: Besoeker ||
03/11/2020 08:45 ||
Top|| File under: Islamic State
[Jpost] A Palestinian youth was killed and over a dozens more injured by Israeli fire during violent clashes near Nablus in the West Bank on early Wednesday morning.
"Some 500 Palestinians took part in a violent disturbance of the peace near the village of Beta," the IDF Spokesperson's Unit said in a statement. "The rioters hurled stones at IDF soldiers and burned tires," the army added it is investigating the report saying a Palestinian was killed and several other were wounded in the incident.
The 15 year-old teenager,identified by the Palestinian Health Ministry as Mohammad Hamayel, died in hospital after he was hit in the head with live ammunition shot by IDF troops near a fortress at an archealogical site near the town of Beita. Headshot!
The WAFA Palestinian News Agency quoted the spokesman for the Health Ministry, Tarif Ashour, as confirming that another 17 Palestinians were brought to the Rafidia Government Hospital treated for medical treatment after being injured in the clashes, including two in serious condition.
According to a report in Haaretz, the clashes broke out around 5.30 ahead when IDF troops came to remove a group of Palestinian protesters ahead of a tour by Israeli settlers to the fortress which reportedly dates back to the Hasmonean era.
Meanwhile on Wednesday night a 14 year-old Israeli teenager from the settlement of Yitzhar was seriously wounded after he was hit in the head by a stone thrown towards the car he was riding in by Palestinians south of Nablus.
Channel 12 reported that the youth, who was part of a drunk group of individuals who reached a checkpoint after going to a Purim party, started to provoke Palestinians who were in a near-by vehicle. drunk 14 yr old?
[PRESSTV] Syrian government forces have discovered a workshop in the western countryside of the country’s embattled northwestern province of Aleppo, which foreign-sponsored Takfiri ...an adherent of takfir wal hijra, an offshoot of Salafism that regards everybody who doesn't agree with them as apostates who must be killed... turbans used to manufacture toxic chemical weapons ...have not been used since WWI except for in Iraq, by the late, unlamented Saddam Hussein and in Syria, but really, honest, not by the Syrian government. And in Germany in WWII, but that was against civilians. Lots of them, just one of many reasons Hitler's also late and unlamented... for their attacks against army troops and civilians in government-controlled areas.
Syria’s official news agency SANA, citing an unnamed field officer, reported that the covert workshop was uncovered inside a terrorist hideout dug inside a mountain in the recently-liberated Anjara area on Tuesday as army troopers were combing the region for hidden ordinance as well as improvised bombs, and were preparing repatriation of local residents.
Posted by: Fred ||
03/11/2020 00:00 ||
Top|| File under: al-Nusra
A multi-volume chronology and reference guide set detailing three years of the Mexican Drug War between 2010 and 2012.
Rantburg.com and borderlandbeat.com correspondent and author Chris Covert presents his first non-fiction work detailing
the drug and gang related violence in Mexico.
Chris gives us Mexican press dispatches of drug and gang war violence
over three years, presented in a multi volume set intended to chronicle the death, violence and mayhem which has
dominated Mexico for six years.