12 Americans Killed in Taliban Blast

A Taliban suicide bomber killed 12 Americans — four troops and eight contract workers — four Afghans, and a Canadian soldier, when he rammed his bomb-laden Toyota into an armored bus in Kabul Saturday. The brazen attack marked the deadliest strike against Americans in the Afghan capital since the U.S. invaded 10 years ago this …

Happy 10th, Afghan War

I vividly recall being in the Pentagon 10 years ago today, awaiting the beginning of the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan, a military counterpunch to the 9/11 attacks that had shocked the nation four weeks earlier. Army General Tommy Franks was in charge as the head of U.S. Central Command, and Don Rumsfeldwas the maestro overseeing …

On Turbanicide

Interesting take on last week’s assassination of Burhanuddin Rabbani in Afghanistan, relayed by someone calling himself KabulHipster, via U.S. Army Capt. Crispin Burke:

After Rabbani’s assassination, CJCS Mike Mullen testified before the Senate for the last time, and pretty much threw the ISI and their Haqqani connections under

Growing Afghanistan Doubts

Concern inside the U.S. military that Afghanistan is not going to end well is heating up. It’s always been simmering, but now seems to be coming to a slow boil. Lately, at least in private conversations with officers up and down the chain, the concerns are becoming louder.

“There is no endgame and there hasn’t been one from …

Of Stupid Answers and Arms Sales


We don’t dip our toes into domestic politics too much here on Battleland — that’s why TIME has Swampland. But sometimes we just can’t resist. In Thursday night’s debate, a questioner asked Texas Governor Rick Perry what he would do if he got a 3 a.m. phone call saying Pakistan’s …

Afghanistan: It’s a Gas, Gas, Gas

Trouble on the blimp front: there apparently isn’t enough helium around to float the latest humongous lighter-than-air vehicles the U.S. military wants floating in the skies over Afghanistan to keep an eye out for bad guys.

The new Northrop Grumman unmanned Long Endurance Multi-Intelligence Vehicle has “huge gaseous helium …

Spoils of War, 21st Century-Style

A Predator drone killed three Taliban and a Pakistani soldier recently. Or rather three Taliban and a Pakistani soldier reportedly died fighting over the wreckage of a downed Predator. Kind of makes you glad there wasn’t a pilot aboard.

Hunting Down IEDs: The `Red Dot’ Express

After years of climbing, it looks like combat deaths due to roadside bombs in Afghanistan are on the decline. That’s good news, because such improvised explosive devices — IEDs — have been the biggest killer of U.S. troops. IEDs are a continual game of cat-and-mouse. When pressure-sensitive IEDs kept killing too many innocent …

Tet 2.0?

Astute longtime DIA intelligence analyst John McCreary reviews what happened Tuesday in Kabul and doesn’t like what he sees:

Three major Taliban attacks have taken place in Kabul this summer…One such attack is a perhaps good fortune. A second might have been a coincidence, but three is a strategic trend. Violent instability is

“How Did the U.S. Military Retool Itself Post-9/11?”

In the decade after 9/11, just how much did the U.S. military have to recalibrate to fight the wars it found itself launching in Afghanistan and, 18 months later, in Iraq? This week, on Command Post, we discuss the retooling of the American armed forces with Eric Schmitt of the New York Times — co-author of Counterstrike: The Untold

Talking With the Taliban

If the U.S. is going to stick to its timetable to pull its forces out of Afghanistan in 2014, it’s going to have to negotiate with the Taliban. It’s strange to say that the morning after the 10th anniversary of the attacks that led the U.S. to invade Afghanistan in an effort to drive the Taliban from power. It was the Taliban, after …

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