Afghanistan

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Pompeo: This Deal May End 20 Years of Conflict

As the 'New York Times' takes heat for a Taliban op-ed

(Newser) - A seven-day "reduction in violence" begins Friday in Afghanistan between US troops and the Taliban, a move the BBC notes is meant to lead to a more permanent ceasefire. "After decades of conflict, we have come to an understanding with the Taliban," Secretary of State Mike Pompeo... More »

Afghan Shooter Wore an Army Uniform

2 Americans dead, 6 wounded in attack

(Newser) - Two US service members—both Special Forces—are dead and six service members are wounded after an attack in Afghanistan on Saturday, CNN reports. An Afghan soldier was also killed and three wounded in the surprise gunfight. It began after someone in an Afghan uniform opened fire at the Sherzad... More »

US Official: American Casualties in Afghanistan

Several US personnel were either injured or killed

(Newser) - American and Afghan military personnel were fired on while conducting an operation in Afghanistan's eastern Nangarhar province, the US military said Saturday. Several US personnel were either injured or killed, but the exact number and other details were not provided, said a US official who agreed to discuss the... More »

US Forces Search for Kidnapped American

Illinois contractor was captured in Afghanistan

(Newser) - Months after the Taliban released two hostages, an American and an Australian, another American has been taken in Afghanistan. Mark Frerichs, 57, of Lombard, Illinois, was kidnapped last Friday, Newsweek reports. Frerichs is an executive for a US contractor, International Logistical Support, and a former diver for the Navy. No... More »

US Bombings in Afghanistan Hit Record High

7,423 munitions dropped in 2019, compared to 947 in 2015

(Newser) - The US dropped more bombs on Afghanistan in 2019 than in any other year since the Pentagon began keeping track in 2006. A total of 7,423 munitions were dropped, up from 7,362 in 2018 and 4,361 in 2017, Military.com reports based on data from the US... More »

US on Confusing Afghanistan Plane Crash: It Was Ours

US military says it was a US Air Force plane and there's no indication it was shot down

(Newser) - After a flurry of confusing reports about a downed plane in eastern Afghanistan on Monday, the US military has confirmed it was a US Air Force plane that crashed. The rep for US forces in Afghanistan says the Bombardier E-11A crashed in the Ghazni province, the AP reports. US officials... More »

Lawsuit: US Contractors Basically Funded the Taliban

The civil suit was filed on Friday

(Newser) - A lawsuit filed Friday claims that US and international contractors paid the Taliban protection money to complete projects in Afghanistan—and says that money was used to kill Americans, the Wall Street Journal reports. The plaintiffs are family members of 143 US service members and contractors who were wounded or... More »

Taliban Kidnap 26 Peace Activists

Convoy was ambushed in western Afghanistan

(Newser) - The Taliban ambushed a peace convoy in western Afghanistan and abducted 26 activists, members of a peace movement, a police spokesman says. The insurgents staged the ambush in the district of Bala Buluk in Farah province on Tuesday. The Taliban forced the six-vehicle convoy to a halt, then got into... More »

20th US Service Member of 2019 Killed in Afghanistan

Taliban tweets alleged photo of soldier's ID

(Newser) - An American service member was killed in combat Monday in Afghanistan, the US military said without providing further details, while the Taliban claimed they were behind a roadside bombing in northern Kunduz province that killed the US soldier. The Taliban now control or hold sway over practically half of Afghanistan... More »

This News Could Finally Tip the Odds in Taliban Talks

Looks like President Ashraf Ghani has a 2nd term

(Newser) - Afghan President Ashraf Ghani appears to have narrowly won a second term, according to preliminary results from September's balloting that were announced Sunday, although his main challenger rejected the outcome as illegitimate, the AP reports. If the outcome stands despite the complaints of ballot fraud, it could give Ghani... More »

Trump's Taliban News Seems to Startle the Taliban

'We are ready to talk,' the Sunni group says

(Newser) - President Trump's visit to Afghanistan on Thanksgiving turned out to be a surprise in more ways than one, the Washington Post reports. In big news, he told US troops that Taliban talks are on again—but the Taliban and Afghan President Ashraf Ghani seemed just as surprised when they... More »

Trump's Trip to Kabul Involved Plane With Portable Toilet

Pre-scheduled tweets were part of the planning

(Newser) - President Trump's surprise Thanksgiving Day trip to Afghanistan , his second to a war zone, was carried out in secrecy, and just how that came to pass is now being revealed. CNN reports Trump sneaked out of Mar-a-Lago and boarded "a bare-bones military plane" with "just four blue... More »

Trump Surprises US Troops With News About the Taliban

The president arrives at Bagram Air Field in Afghanistan

(Newser) - President Donald Trump made a surprise visit to Afghanistan to spend time with US troops on Thanksgiving, the AP reports. Trump arrived at Bagram Air Field shortly after 8:30pm local time and spent more than two-and-a-half hours on the ground. Reporters were under strict instructions to keep the trip... More »

In These Schools, Rape of Boys Is Systemic: Report

Advocacy group turns up 546 cases in 6 schools

(Newser) - The New York Times is out with a disturbing report from a child advocacy group in Afghanistan suggesting that the rape of boys by teachers and other figures of authority is exceedingly common. The story cites 165 reports gathered from just three schools by the Logar Youth, Social and Civil... More »

2 US Service Members Killed in Afghanistan Chopper Crash

Taliban claims responsibility

(Newser) - Two US service members were killed on Wednesday when their helicopter crashed in Afghanistan, the US military said. The statement said the cause of the crash is under investigation but that preliminary reports do not indicate it was caused by enemy fire. However, the Taliban promptly claimed to have shot... More »

Taliban Releases Last American Hostage

Kevin King, Australian Timothy Weeks flown to US air base in Afghanistan

(Newser) - The last known American to be held by the Taliban is free. Kevin King and Australian Timothy Weeks, professors kidnapped at gunpoint while leaving the American University of Afghanistan in Kabul in August 2016, were released to US forces in Afghanistan on Tuesday in exchange for three Taliban commanders who... More »

US Taliban Hostage to Go Free

3 Taliban commanders released in Afghan prisoner swap

(Newser) - Two American University of Afghanistan professors kidnapped by the Taliban three years after they were kidnapped at gunpoint may finally go free. Afghan President Ashraf Ghani said Tuesday that American Kevin King and Australian Timothy Weeks would be freed in exchange for the release of three Taliban commanders, including the... More »

Pentagon Trying to Plan for Trump's Next Sudden Move

If president suddenly decides to pull troops out of Afghanistan, DOD officials want to be ready

(Newser) - There's no current instruction from the White House to yank troops out of Afghanistan. But amid recent developments in Syria , the Pentagon is taking no chances and has been setting up a contingency plan in anticipation of any surprise directives from President Trump on Afghanistan. Current and former Defense... More »

Day After UN Warning, a Deadly Mosque Bombing

Dozens killed in mosque explosion in Afghanistan's Nangarhar province

(Newser) - An explosion rocked a mosque in eastern Afghanistan as dozens of people gathered to offer Friday players, causing the roof to collapse and killing at least 60 worshippers, provincial officials said, per the AP and New York Times . Dozens of others were said to be injured. Attaullah Khogyani, spokesman for... More »

Soldier Shot in Search for Bergdahl Dies 10 Years Later

Master Sgt. Mark Allen never recovered from injury

(Newser) - A soldier shot in the head while searching for Bowe Bergdahl a decade ago has died. Master Sgt. Mark Allen was left paralyzed in much of his body and unable to speak after he was shot during a 2009 insurgent ambush in Afghanistan, CNN reports. The 46-year-old from Loganville, Ga.... More »

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