Iran is helping train Taliban fighters within its borders, according to U.S. military and intelligence officials.
The United States has already said that the Taliban may be receiving limited training from the Iranians in Afghanistan, but the officials told CNN that training in the use of small arms was occurring within Iran.
"We've known for some time that Iran has been a source for both materiel and trained fighters for Taliban elements in Afghanistan," Army Lt. Col. Edward Sholtis said Monday. But, he said, it is unknown whether that training is occurring with the support of Tehran, or it is "simply something that is happening beyond the government's control." FULL POST
Two top Democrats on a key House committee have expressed concern over the quality of equipment and training for troops heading to Afghanistan.
The concerns came straight from U.S. troops heading to combat, who recently spoke to House Armed Services Committee Chairman Rep. Ike Skelton, D-Missouri, and Rep. Solomon Ortiz, D-Texas. The two congressmen relayed these complaints to Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Joint Chiefs Chairman Adm. Mike Mullen in a letter obtained by CNN. Read the letter
The congressmen recently met with U.S. troops in Europe, some of them training to deploy and others recovering from combat wounds. Many of the troops passed on some troubling information about their equipment and training that raised concerns with the lawmakers, particularly as the United States escalates its presence in Afghanistan. FULL POST