A 'Mini Surge' in Afghanistan
Pouncing on the rhetorical success of the U.S. “surge” in Iraq, the U.S. military launched operations Tuesday in the south of Afghanistan as part of a “mini surge” against strongholds of Taliban fighters. The Marines who conducted the operation are part of a 2,300-strong reserve force under the control of the U.S. commander of international troops in Afghanistan, Gen. Dan McNeill.
A strike force of US marines punched through Taliban frontlines in southern Helmand yesterday as part of an Afghan “mini surge” intended to weaken the insurgents’ grip on the war-ravaged south.
The marine force, numbered in the hundreds, exchanged fire with Taliban fighters as they pushed through Garmser, a town abandoned by its inhabitants in recent years and ringed by poppy fields.
The American soldiers are the core of a new 2,300-strong reserve force under the control of the US commander of international troops in Afghanistan, General Dan McNeill. The Helmand mission aims to disrupt drugs and smuggling routes into nearby Pakistan.