Islamonline compares U.S. tactics to Hamas. They just don’t include the Hamas part.
CAIRO – US troops have shut two military outposts in northern Afghanistan following a deadly Taliban attack, in a move said to be part of a policy to reposition troops into populated areas, reported the Los Angeles Times on Saturday, October 10.
“We’ve been planning to realign our forces to better protect the (Afghan) population for months,” Army spokesman Maj. T.G. Taylor said.
“The closures are part of that realignment.”
The US evacuated troops from two outposts in the Kamdesh district of Nuristan province.
Military officials said departing US troops destroyed what was left of the outposts before their evacuation.
Washington says the closure is a pre-planned policy to “reposition” the US-led troops from remote regions into populated areas in Afghanistan.
Top US commander in Afghanistan Gen. Stanley McChrystal has said he is in favor of pulling troops from remote areas to concentrate efforts on securing urban areas.
The closure came a week after a deadly Taliban attack on the outposts, which left eight US troops and two Afghan soldiers dead.
The growing Taliban attacks have made 2009 the worst year for the US-led foreign troops since the 2001 US-led invasion.
Some 394 soldiers have died so far this year, 236 of them Americans, according to a tally of coalition deaths by the independent icasualties.org website.
More than 1,430 soldiers have died since 2001.
The Taliban claimed control of the Kamdesh district after the US troop withdrawal.
“This is another victory for Taliban,” spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid said, reported The Times.
“This means they (US troops) are not coming back.”
The spokesman said that the Taliban have flown their flag over the US outposts.
“We have control of another district in eastern Afghanistan.”
The Taliban has launched a protracted guerrilla warfare against the US-led forces and the Kabul government of Hamid Karzai since the 2001 US invasion.
The Taliban has stressed that they are fighting to force the foreign troops out of Afghanistan, stressing that the Afghan group poses no threat to the West.
“We did not have any agenda to harm other countries including Europe nor we have such agenda today,” the Taliban said in a statement, marking the 8th anniversary of the US invasion.
“Still, if you want to turn the country of the proud and pious Afghans into a colony, then know that we have an unwavering determination and have braced for a prolonged war.”