Afghanistan

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White House May Outsource Afghan War to Contractors

Blackwater's Erik Prince floats his plan

(Newser) - President Trump is said to be frustrated with progress in the 16-year-old Afghanistan war, and a familiar name in US military circles is offering an unprecedented solution. Blackwater founder Erik Prince has floated a plan to the White House that it turn over most of its military duties in the... More »

Father of Robotics Team Captain Killed by ISIS

Mohammed Asef Qaderyan was among 36 killed in Herat blast

(Newser) - The father of the captain of the Afghan girls' robotics team has been killed just weeks after one of the proudest moments of his life. Mohammed Asef Qaderyan, father of 14-year-old Fatemah Qaderyan, was among at least 36 people killed Tuesday night in a suicide bombing at a mosque in... More »

Sources: Trump Lashed Out in Meeting on Afghan War

He suggested firing top US commander because 'we aren't winning'

(Newser) - President Trump isn't happy about the situation in Afghanistan and his proposed solution is one that will be familiar to Celebrity Apprentice viewers, insiders say. Sources tell Reuters that during a July 19 meeting in the White House Situation Room, an angry Trump said military leaders should consider firing... More »

US Won't Let Afghan Girls Attend Robotics Competition

Instead Team Afghanistan will watch their robot compete via Skype

(Newser) - "We want to show the world we can do it, we just need a chance," 14-year-old Fatemah says. Fatemah is one of six teen girls competing for Team Afghanistan in the FIRST Global Challenge robotics competition. Forbes reports the team traveled 500 miles from their home in Herat... More »

Pentagon Blew $28M on Iffy Afghan Army Uniforms

Watchdog: US shelled out extra for 'forest' camo in land with almost no forest

(Newser) - Just one week after defense chief James Mattis told a Senate panel the US is "not winning in Afghanistan," a new report reveals that the US wasted $28 million on the wrong kind of uniforms for Afghan army soldiers. In 2007, the Pentagon allowed the Afghan defense minister... More »

US to Send 4K More Troops to Afghanistan

Move comes after defense chief Mattis gets more authority to set levels

(Newser) - The Pentagon will send almost 4,000 additional American forces to Afghanistan, the largest deployment of US manpower under President Trump's young presidency, reports the AP . The decision by Defense Secretary Jim Mattis could be announced as early as next week, said a White House official. It follows Trump'... More »

ISIS Just Seized Osama's Old Hideout: Tora Bora

Islamic State now controls area used as hiding place for bin Laden

(Newser) - The latest territorial conquest by the Islamic State will be familiar to anyone who remembers the US hunt for Osama bin Laden: the mountainous Tora Bora region of Afghanistan. The New York Times reports that ISIS has gained control of the complex of caves and tunnels once used as a... More »

Afghan Soldier Kills 3 US Soldiers: Official

The Taliban is claiming responsibility

(Newser) - Three US soldiers were killed Saturday when an Afghan army solider opened fire on them in eastern Afghanistan, US officials tell CNN . One other US soldier was wounded in the attack, which took place in the Achin district. An Afghan official said the Afghan soldier was killed after the attack.... More »

Explosion Kills Dozens During Kabul Rush Hour

At least 80 killed in diplomatic district

(Newser) - A massive explosion rocked a highly secure diplomatic area of Kabul on Wednesday morning, killing at least 80 people, wounding hundreds more, and sending a huge plume of smoke over the Afghan capital. The target of the attack—which officials said was a suicide car bombing—was not immediately known... More »

Up to 5K US Troops May Head to Afghanistan: Officials

Trump still needs to approve new Taliban plan worked up by military, foreign policy advisers

(Newser) - The Trump administration has slowly changed course on initiatives set by former President Obama, and the 15-year war Afghanistan has just been added to the list. The Washington Post reports high-level US military and foreign policy advisers have created a new blueprint for dealing with the Taliban, which would let... More »

Pentagon Confirms Suspected Fate of ISIS Afghan Head

Abdul Haseeb Logari was killed in raid last month

(Newser) - A military raid last month killed the head of the ISIS affiliate in Afghanistan, the Pentagon said Sunday night. The death of Abdul Haseeb Logari had been suspected after the April 27 raid on a compound in Nangarhar, a province in eastern Afghanistan, but officials said then that they weren'... More »

2 US Soldiers Killed in ISIS Fight

They were taking part in operation in Afghanistan

(Newser) - The Pentagon says two US service members were killed in Afghanistan overnight Wednesday, reports the AP . Navy Capt. Jeff Davis says they were killed during an operation against the Islamic State in Nangahar Province in the eastern part of the country, the same area in which the US dropped the... More »

More Than 100 Killed, Injured as Taliban Storms Army Base

Attackers were former soldiers, militants say

(Newser) - The Taliban has dealt Afghanistan's army what appears to be a very heavy blow inside one of its own bases. Officials say more than 100 Afghan soldiers were killed or injured when Taliban militants attacked a base outside the northern city of Mazar-e-Sharif on Friday, the BBC reports. Some... More »

Karzai: Ghani a 'Traitor' for Allowing MOAB

Afghanistan's former leader wants the US out of his country after massive bombing

(Newser) - Former Afghan President Hamid Karzai is mincing no words in assessing the United States' bombing of an ISIS stronghold with its second-largest non-nuclear device, reports the New York Times : "Shame, shame," he says of current President Ashraf Ghani's admission that his government coordinated the bombing with the... More »

Death Toll From 'Mother of All Bombs' Now Almost 100

General 'didn't need Trump's approval' to drop MOAB

(Newser) - The US commander in Afghanistan who ordered use of the "mother of all bombs" to attack an ISIS stronghold near the Pakistani border didn't need and didn't request President Donald Trump's approval, Pentagon officials say. The officials—who weren't authorized to speak publicly on the... More »

For All the World to See: Video Shows Massive Bomb Strike

DoD tweeted out 30-second video of bomb's drop in Afghanistan

(Newser) - The "mother of all bombs" was unleashed Thursday on an ISIS target, and by Friday morning, the Defense Department had a short video up on Twitter showing the strike. The 30-second clip was embedded in a tweet that described the strike as hitting "#ISIS cave and tunnel systems... More »

What the 'Mother of All Bombs' Accomplished

36 militants died in blast, says Afghan defense ministry

(Newser) - The "mother of all bombs" dropped on the Islamic State in Afghanistan Thursday not only killed 36 militants but also destroyed their base within a 1,000-foot-long network of tunnels and a stockpile of weapons, says the Afghan defense ministry. A presidential spokesman tells the BBC that ISIS commander... More »

US Drops 'Mother of All Bombs' on ISIS in Afghanistan

First time largest non-nuclear bomb used in combat

(Newser) - US forces in Afghanistan dropped the military's biggest non-nuclear bomb on an Islamic State target in Afghanistan, reports the AP . Pentagon spokesman Adam Stump says it was the first-ever combat use of the bomb, formally called the GBU-43/Massive Ordnance Air Blast bomb. Based on the acronym, it has been... More »

Between 2 More Countries, a Border Fence Begins to Rise

Pakistan erecting a barrier along high-risk border areas with Afghanistan

(Newser) - Pakistan has started building a barrier along parts of one of the most rugged and dangerous border regions in the world: the 1,510-mile border with Afghanistan, which cuts the heartland of the Pashtun ethnic group in two. Pakistan says Taliban militants have been launching attacks across the border, a... More »

US General's Taliban Theory: 'Absolutely False,' Says Russia

Gen. Curtis Scaparrotti thinks Russia may be giving Afghanistan insurgents supplies

(Newser) - There's been lots in the news about Russia lately, and a high-ranking US Army general just added to the mix—this time regarding the country's involvement with the Taliban. Gen. Curtis Scaparrotti, the supreme allied commander of Europe for NATO, told the Senate Armed Services Committee Thursday that... More »

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