in TAAC North (Photo Resolute Support July 2017)
What's Been Going On the Last 17 Years? President Trump had lunch with military personnel to come up with new ideas for the fight in Afghanistan. Seems he is wondering what's been going on for the last 17 years. Hmmmm. How about checking in with Mattis or McMaster? Read more in "Trump seeking new ideas on Afghanistan from service members", Military Times, July 18, 2017.
Heavy ANDSF Losses in Gereshk. The Afghan security forces lost 19 members in Gereshk district on July 20, 2017. The attack involved the use of three captured military vehicles as VBIEDs.
Taliban Leader's Son Carries out Suicide Attack. Some Afghan media reports say that the son of Hibatullah carried out a suicide attack on Thursday when he drove an explosive-laden Humvee into an ANDSF post in Gereshk. Radio Free Europe, July 22, 2017. Afghan government sources are questioning the claim.
Civilians Abducted. The Taliban abducted over 70 civilians in southern Kandahar on Saturday, 22 July. Some civilians were killed. 30 have been released. The civilians were traveling north on the road to Uruzgan.
Pakistan Funds Blocked? The DoD has blocked the disbursement to Pakistan of over $300 million. The purpose of the funds was to reimburse the country for its fight against terrorist groups. It seems the Pentagon feels that Pakistan has not taken 'sufficient action' against the Haqqani Network. You think? Read an article entitled "Pentagon Stops $300 Million Payment to Pakistan, Citing Terrorist Fight", Foreign Policy, July 21, 2017.
ALP Hit Hard in Badakhshan Province. Afghan Local Police (ALP) units were ambushed in remote areas of the province with as many as 30 casualties. Local residents are lodging protests with the central government saying not enough is being done to protect the ALP.
Errant Bombing by Coalition. A US air strike killed as many as 16 Afghan National Police in Gereshk district. The security post was captured by the Taliban earlier but then retaken by Afghan security forces. It was then that the airstrike occurred - reportedly a drone strike. The incident is under investigation. See "Errant US Drone Strike Kills 15 Afghan Troops", Voice of America, July 22, 2017.
Black Hawk Training for Afghan Pilots. It appears that Afghan pilots will begin training on their UH-60 helicopters in the fall of 2017. See a news report in Military Times, July 20, 2017.
Australian SAS Under Scrutiny? Or Just a Cheap Shot. Recent reports by an Australian news media outlet about the Australian Special Forces in Afghanistan area being questioned. Read "Australia's Special Forces Deserve Respect - Not Cheap Shots", Small Wars Journal, July 17, 2017.
Taliban Showcasing the FN SCAR. A recent video released by the Taliban appears to show insurgents carrying a rifle used by U.S. SOF. The videos shows a Taliban fighter with a Special Operations Combat Assault Rifle (SCAR) with an AN/PEQ 5 laser and Surefire mounted. See "How Did Taliban Fighters Get Their Hands on US Special Operations Gear?", Task and Purpose, July 18, 2017.