Alt Left: Heavy US Casualties in Afghanistan

8 American soldiers were killed and at least 6 more wounded while 12 Afghan troops were also killed in two separate attacks. A US mercenary was taken prisoner in a third attack. All attacks happened in the last three days.

The first attack was an insider attack that occurred when an Afghan soldier attacked a combined US-Afghan force in the Sherzad District in Nangarhar Province. These insider attacks are quite common. The people who do them were either already radicalized or become radicalized while in the army. A few have escaped and in all cases, they joined the Taliban. 2 US soldiers were killed and 6 were wounded, and 6 Afghan soldiers were killed.

The other attack also took place in Nangarhar in an operation where US and Afghan troops were trying to clear an area there that had been completely overrun by the Taliban recently. It was unclear whether the Taliban or the Islamic State was behind that attack.

Nangarhar has long been overrun with militants. This is where Obama bin Laden and his forces hid out and escaped from in Tora Bora after all in the southern part of the province on the border with North Waziristan in Pakistan.

In a third case, a US contractor was taken prisoner by the Taliban in Khost Province. He appears to have been a mercenary. Khost has long been overrun with militants also. It’s also on the border with Pakistan, though it’s a bit to the south. I think it borders on South Waziristan.

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