February 3rd, 2010
07:41 AM ET

U.S. forces eye Taliban stronghold Marjah

KABUL, Afghanistan  - The next key U.S. military operation in Afghanistan will focus on Marjah, the last major Taliban stronghold in Helmand province, a Marine commander said Wednesday. Col. George Amland, the deputy commander of Task Force Leatherneck, gave no timeframe for its start.

Marjah, with a population of up to 100,000, is considered key to fracturing the Taliban's influence in southern Afghanistan. 

The Marine-led operation will "alter the ecosystem of this area significantly," according to Amland, who said Marjah's insurgency has tentacles that stretch to Pakistan and the bordering provinces of Nimruz and Farah.

The backbone of the force will be made up of some of the 30,000 additional U.S. troops being sent to Afghanistan by President Barack Obama, Amland said, and also will include a larger contingent of Afghan National Security Forces than has been used in previous operations.

The last major operation by U.S. Marines against Taliban fighters in southern Helmand took place not long after U.S. Gen. Stanley McChrystal took over in June as the allied commander in Afghanistan.

soundoff (111 Responses)
  1. Dave

    The Canadians have always been front and center when her friends needed her ... There was a battle in Korea for example where 1 battalian of Canadian infantry held back thousands of Chinese while American soldiers were being evacuated ..Pentagon figures will also show that during Nam there were over 20,000 Canadians fighting in the US military ... The EXACT figures will never be known because they didnt stay here and use Gi benefits because they all returned to Canada ...They are a small country but have a VERY proud military ...

    February 8, 2010 at 11:35 am | Report abuse |
  2. Daniel Boone

    Millions are spent to support this madness by the NATO countrys while the Taliban sit back and watch. The Taliban are destined to rule that land no matter what NATO does. There will be no winners in the end. STOP THE KILLING NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    February 8, 2010 at 11:07 am | Report abuse |
  3. Xugos

    Canada has the highest per-capita casualties; which leads me to conclude that it is sacrificing as much as if not more than other NATO countries. Germany's army has rules of engagement in place that prevents them from even fighting the Taliban, now that is a problem.

    February 8, 2010 at 9:41 am | Report abuse |
  4. telfords change

    killing the people you help create in the first place by the way you live in the west. well done?

    February 8, 2010 at 7:34 am | Report abuse |
  5. David (a former US Marine)

    I'm still waiting to see Larry's apology. God bless all those from all countries trying to do good in this mess, God help the innocent civilians caught in harms way, and God please bring all the troops home soon. Let us all see the way to peace.

    February 8, 2010 at 2:25 am | Report abuse |
  6. Khan

    idiot army going to sucide !! slave people only do what they are toldd to do !!!

    February 8, 2010 at 1:06 am | Report abuse |
  7. Scott Chapman

    I respect each and every one of you that serve in response to an attack that prompted and event that eventually lead us here. Perhaps we should have stayed in Afghanistan, but right now is not the time for debate. I'm happy to get the sense of comradare between the Armed Forces no matter what country they are from, as well as their family. I'm confused about the squabbling for who has lost the most casualties. Larry shut up a long time ago and I'm happy about that. Get help buddy! I'm a Canadian and for the most part we always stand with our American friends. Many Canadians were in Korea and Vietnam. Oh Larry, did you know that we were in WW2 long before you guys were? In fact you didn't join in until the Japanese attacked. Remember your history before you open your mouth. And that is not to say there were 1000's of US volunteers that did come. Let’s work together to bring peace in the end. We know what we must do. The soldiers seem to be working together; it’s the rest of us that are squabbling. Let’s just kick the Taliban’s butt and work together and pray for all of the men and women that are over there, as we are safely over here.

    February 7, 2010 at 7:28 pm | Report abuse |
  8. mohamad

    Thank you Americans for trying to clean the vermin from my country

    February 7, 2010 at 6:23 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Corey

    Ahhhh lets not forget the canadians...we are here too and we are going to bump uglys with the taliban..... lets give it to them boy's!

    February 7, 2010 at 3:11 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Elaine

    My brother is a Marine serving in the Helmand Afghanistan. Please pray for him and all of the troops as they prepare for the very dangerous mission to keep our country safe and the afghan people They are a very brave bunch and they are all heros!

    February 7, 2010 at 12:46 pm | Report abuse |
  11. badboy902

    Seal the boarders, kick out the media and when it is all said and done and the media returns the only thing they will see is hotdog eating, levis wearing, flag waving SOB's

    February 7, 2010 at 11:27 am | Report abuse |
  12. bob searcy

    the lives of our soldiers day to day must be terrifying and exhausting. i wish them every break they can get. it appears that our intent on this offensive is to exterminate as opposed to capturing. its probably the only way sadly. i firmly reject all of your religions and get tired of the death associated with them. grow up , humanity. !!

    February 7, 2010 at 10:34 am | Report abuse |
  13. Nancy Leausa

    Its about time! The faster we move, the faster we can get our loved ones home. God keep our Guys and girls safe. God bless the Marines and all other military personnel. Get 'er done ! My boy is a Marine serving in Helman province right now and I worry daily about him . CNN is the best plce I've found for upto date news about Afganistan. The others are a day behind.

    February 7, 2010 at 8:25 am | Report abuse |
  14. JKF

    Unless the element of surprise is retained the terrorist, as usual, will cut/run= hide amongst the civilian population. Announcing the intentions will give the terrorist plenty of time to move their weapons and to move non-local terrorist groups/formations out of the area, so that they can terrorize women and children for another day, in another area. Before making such grandiouse annpouncements, the area needs to be sealed-off, the terrorists must be allowed to exit, if they do so, and in a perfect world threy must be engaged away from the civ population, but it is not a perfect world, and the so called civ population, in many cases, are the supporters of the terrorists. In a city of 100,000+ full of terrorists, what are the chances of the existance of large groups of people that do not support the terrorists??? very close to ZERO -so wake up and look at the sit realistically!

    February 7, 2010 at 5:29 am | Report abuse |
  15. AL

    the problem or the issue here in not the fight with the taliban, or is a fight against justice, freedom, way of life,why on earth the american and other european goverment still support israel which still torturing and occupaying arab lands for decades now, and still nothing been done, what justice and freedom you are talking about, and protection of our way of life.is those people in palestine didnt have one or just some....i am muslim and proud to be, but the world we live in need to be changed by thier own people thinking,not govement ideology and decieve,and knowing who cause the problem or hatred or terrorism from the start.....put yourself in some people shoes,countries,like palestine and you will know it before you decide to start joining a cause without a cause,where there will be no loser or winner. we all live in one earth,wanting peace and freedom , but the mentality of some people or hatred make wrong assumption which lead to ....

    February 7, 2010 at 12:55 am | Report abuse |
  16. ishaq moqadasi

    point of view from an afghani from afghanistan

    the problem in afghanistan is not about the taleban winning battles or even gaining influence in areas. many of the encounters the coalition forces engage are from many groups other than the taleban. each area within afghanistan has local leaders who have their private militias at their use. buy off these leaders and you eliminate this confusion of who is and isn't taleban. then the problem is minimized to taleban and al qaeda exclusively.

    dealing with al qaeda is pointless and not very logical, so capturing or killing al qaeda is the only viable option. however, the taleban are very different, most of them (in afghanistan) are afghanis who want afghanistan stable, rebuilt, and successful. they have no regional or international ambitions. so give them a reason to put down their arms and join the mainstream.

    the afghan government of today is highly corrupt and very incapable of doing things on their own. its highly dependent on foreign intervention and aid. afghanistan has many natural resources which can produce literally hundreds of thousands of jobs and provide the central government billions in revenue, the problem is karzai puts uneducated criminal warlords in power to buy off areas within afghanistan that do not vow allegiance to kabul. he looks past a candidates credentials in favor of his politics and what area of afghanistan he can win.

    then theres the problem of foreign intervention within this conflict inside afghanistan. pakistan does not want to see afghanistan stabilized because it produces a future potential risk. back in the 1950s and 60s afghanistan almost invaded pakistan over an area which defined the borders between afghanistan and pakistan called the "Durand Line" which the afghan government called "unacceptable." then theres china and russia who fund local groups to fight american forces because they don't want to see american and western european troops soo close to home. then theres iran which is in panic over the american forces surrounding them with the occupation of iraq and afghanistan.

    obama is smart in focusing in building afghan civil society rather than the military aspects of this war. the key is to make afghanistan stabile and provide for its people.

    February 6, 2010 at 11:05 pm | Report abuse |
  17. David

    The Muslims cant unify and speak out against the taliban because in a country like Afghanistan there is no way to unify. The geographical conditions make unifying almost impossible, The Taliban are too strong of a force to speak out against as a mostly unarmed civilian populace. They gain support from general suppiorters to drive out the invaders, and gain support through fear and scare tactics. As for telling the enemy when and where were attacking i think its a bold but good plan. The Us marines excel at fighting in a 100% combat environment. We used this strategy in fallujah Iraq in operation Phanton Fury. WE dropped pamphlets saying were coming, if you dont want to fight then get out. SO it was just US verse the enemy. Makes ROE's much easier to win a battle with. No one can go toe to toe with US Marines

    February 6, 2010 at 7:06 pm | Report abuse |
  18. Bill Cody

    Hey BinLaden 10000.
    Sounds like you need to pack your bags and head over to Marjah with your brave mujahidin boys. I bet your coward buddies won't be staying around for the fight. Your IED'S may get a few good men but 30,000 Marines are involved in this "PUSH" And as Susan just mentioned the backbone of the operation is made up of U.S. Army soldiers. The British Commando's and Canadians aren't planning on being too friendly during in this operation either. There probably won't be too much left after the U.S.Air Force "PULVERIZES" whatever they consider key Taliban strong holds.

    As for Maqsood Ahnad
    The Americans didn't invade that toilet bowl over there we retaliated for 9/11 just in case you forgot!! The Taliban picked the fight and we just took it to their homeland.

    February 6, 2010 at 5:47 pm | Report abuse |
  19. C. mom

    Please note to all of you who talk against Canadians or any other country joining our brave Marines and soldiers shame on you! I am the mother of one involved in this current offensive and I thank God that any of those that join in are there to fight side by side my very courageous son.

    February 6, 2010 at 5:18 pm | Report abuse |
  20. T

    US will loose this war.. it is only a matter of time.
    They might win the battles, but they will loose the war

    February 6, 2010 at 4:46 pm | Report abuse |
  21. Michel Davitti

    What is obvious is the difference of perception of this war from an European stand point of view. I absolutely not share the fact that this war could be win by military means. It has been and still cost billion to the US and Canadian taxpayers. If you add the total cost of the Irak war don't be surprised why your dollar is so weak and the anger from muslin countries against this military mess remains so high.

    February 6, 2010 at 3:50 pm | Report abuse |
  22. Nathanael [desert voice]

    It's easy to sit in a living room making predictions. But if I were the Taliban, I would leave Marjah this moment in deference to the innocent population. It's not going to be a safe place. The Taliban has probably left anyway, without asking my advice. What concerns me, and it should the U.S. generals, is where did the Taliban go!? Quetta is one possible scenario. Are they expecting a diversionary attack there? It's all fluid at this point. What is paramount, is that the Marines do not fall in ambushes and traps. The land mines are also a huge concern. I have long been advising the use of unmanned dumpster trucks os some other heavy vehicles before the Humvies. I end by calling again on Taliban to flee for their dear lives!

    February 6, 2010 at 2:22 pm | Report abuse |
  23. Ann

    Susan, I want to thank your son for his service. My son, a Marine, is also over there, Thanks to all who are serving or have served; I believe there is no greater sacrifice!

    February 6, 2010 at 2:17 pm | Report abuse |
  24. Tim

    Bill - Thanks for the info. Is the Army pursuing the same strategy and tactics as Marines?

    February 6, 2010 at 1:31 pm | Report abuse |
  25. Sjur Zeiner-Gundersen

    It's time for all US troops to come home

    February 6, 2010 at 12:40 pm | Report abuse |
  26. Susan

    Tyler, yes it is a Marine led offensive, but the backbone of the operation is made up of U.S. Army soldiers. There are just more of them than there are Marines so people not familiar with the military often lump all servicemen under the name soldiers.

    My son is a U.S. Army AH-64 Apache helicopter pilot serving in Afghanistan. He has been at a small remote FOB since last April, flying six days a wek and encountering Taliban almost daily. He wrote to us last week that he was being reassigned in order to take part in a new operation. He said, "I can't tell you anything else but watch CNN . . . they will report all the details to the American public & the Taliban as soon as they find out. "

    I guess Marjah is where my boy is headed tonight.

    February 6, 2010 at 3:37 am | Report abuse |
  27. tidus

    we need to send books not bullets.. hope this is followed up with some good reason for them to become democratic.. just don't tell them about Insurance, Healthcare, Wall Street, Monopolies, clean water and our anti-utopian society.

    February 5, 2010 at 6:02 pm | Report abuse |
  28. Tyler

    Please be careful when calling people soldiers. I am referring to the fact that this is a MARINE led offensive. Marines are not soldiers, they are Marines. Semper Fidelis. I will be deploying to Afghanistan in early July, I only hope my brothers over there have not killed everything yet so i can go get some.

    February 5, 2010 at 5:57 pm | Report abuse |
  29. Greg

    I know not everyone out there reading this is going to agree with what I am saying and many of you will continue not to care, but in my opinion the freedom of speech should stay on American soil, and the fact that our Military leaders are openly speaking about future operations is only giving our enemy an advantage. I agree is wont make a difference in the overall outcome of who will control the territory when the dust settles, but how many more lives will have been lost due to the fact that we knocked on the door before we kicked it in.
    I have spent the last few minutes reading the comments on this page and I must say I am dumbfounded. I find it funny to read comments from people who have absolutely no idea what they are talking about, or they are bickering about the death tolls of one country compared to another. It is sad really. I cant say that I am an expert in Military strategy or that I even care a little about politics. I will continue to do my part as my country continues to ask me to, but it really is funny to me that people pretend to care about what they know nothing about. Ask yourself the last time you asked a returning vet what it was like "over there" and really meant it. What would you say if he said he had killed a lot of people just like you asked him to. What if he told you the terrible stories about his friends getting blown up by IEDs and he had to bag up the pieces. Are these the things that you want to hear or would you just rather hear what we all say. "It wasn't that bad over there. Just dusty and hot" The truth is normal people dont want to hear the real answers to there questions, and we arent willing to give them either. We dont want to be treated any differently then we were before our country asked us to to what you were/are not willing to do.
    To all of my brothers out there right now. Good luck, and I will see you when you get back.

    February 5, 2010 at 3:37 pm | Report abuse |
  30. Bill

    I am a former Marine officer. My sources in the Corps have been stating for months that the main task of the Marines sent to Afghanistan would be to destroy/degrade the Taliban control of the heroin trade. Taliban ability to access a major portion of this revenue stream is the principal source of its funding, used to purchase arms, food, medicines and fighters, e.g. money is not just the mother's milk of politics; it is the mother's milk of war. Marjah is a major center of this trade. Just as in Iraq, religious fervor is not the sole reason fighters join the Taliban. Many do it to make the only living that they can. We have also encouraged and funded better pay for the government security forces, to compete for people. Heavy combat pressure tells the Taliban fighter that he has a strong chance of dying if he runs afoul of Marines. Development money provides hope for a better life, and opportunities to make a living discourages enlistment, and forces the Taliban to "conscript". This is a multi-prong strategy to isolate core fanatical Taliban and foreign fighters, so that they can be controled by goverment forces.

    February 5, 2010 at 3:36 pm | Report abuse |

    Talibans are by product of American and Russian invasion.

    February 5, 2010 at 3:03 pm | Report abuse |
  32. George R

    Major offenses are almost never secret. Someone earlier said it right, there is a psychological affect on the soldiers defending these positions. When the threat is unknown, often a false sense of courage is present. When you get the note in the mail that reads: "We're coming for you." Often the desired self-defecation occurs.

    I love with civilians and junior enlisted people criticize what the DoD does and does not release. Like they are so incompetent on OPSEC they in their office going "Oh crap, I didn't realize the Taliban watches the news!" There is a rhyme and reasons to all decisions of war (on and off the battlefield).

    February 5, 2010 at 2:30 pm | Report abuse |
  33. edward bloom

    edward bloom can & well pray them come back us america safty no longer fighting othere people are not that great people at all,by edward bloom

    February 5, 2010 at 12:32 pm | Report abuse |
  34. Hunter

    as a formal K-9 handler in the military i think that it is a great idea and those of you against it well shut the hell up you don't know anything about what its like over there and what we have to do it a job and my brother and i are will to die for this country

    February 5, 2010 at 11:58 am | Report abuse |
  35. chris

    BinLaden10000: Those you call "Brave Mujahidin" Are not brave...and they are certainly not Mujahidin. They give disrespect to "true" Mujahidin. You warp Muslim religion to your own evil desires. You kill women and children on purpose whereas the UN countries attempting to assist AFH may do it on accident but do their best not to. Eventually, even many of the Taliban will realize that what they are doing is following the path of darkness. You are intolerant of other religion, you do not represent mainstream Muslims who are good people. Unfortunately mainstream Muslims have not stood up to you as they should have as a united group. Even in Iraq......the tribes eventually figured out how evil you really were. They eventually saw that the American forces there "really" were there to help the Iraqis. That shattered everything that you tried to lead them to believe. Why do you think you end up recruiting young teenagers and people down on their luck? YOu know that they have very little choice but to help you. Your kind (terrorists that kill civilians ON PURPOSE) will eventually get whats coming to you. Its a matter of time, and on that day, the Muslim religion will take its place as what it was meant to be. A religion of peace.

    February 5, 2010 at 8:35 am | Report abuse |
  36. Tempestite

    It is difficult to believe that the Taliban have made themselves a target for frontal assault, a type of combat that the U.S. military prefers. To suggest that that if this stronghold is broken then the Taliban resistance will be vanquished is a statement all too reminiscent of Viet Nam, or Tora Bora for that matter.

    I truly hope that the American generals are correct in this assessment, and I wish them Godspeed, but my doubts run deeply. Our intelligence in these matters has not been a shining success.

    The Taliban is likely to be presently dispersing its miltary posture into less obvious target areas. Their tactics against the Soviets would suggest that they are a little samrter than this.

    February 5, 2010 at 8:11 am | Report abuse |
  37. binladin10000

    our brave mujahidin will strike you with ieds and antiarmor mines then retreated to nimuruz ,they will make Majar areas grave yard of the great britain and all crusader.it seems the 2Vietnam had come to real insha-Alah!

    February 5, 2010 at 3:57 am | Report abuse |
  38. Thomas Jefferson

    I have been in Afghanistan for over 2 years now and see no end in sight as long as the powers to be keep pussy footing around. By it’s very nature war is an ugly thing and the only way to win any war is to make the population that supports the resistance suffer to such an extent that it becomes illogical to support. Think of the German’s and Hitler, by the end of the war the Germans just wanted it to stop they had enough, the Japanese much the same after the dropping of nuclear weapons. If the bad guys want to hide in someone’s house I say ok let them hide then vaporized the dwelling, after while word gets around and people start defending their own dwellings and refuse to support the Taliban. The rules of engagement are at a point now where sniper teams can watch individuals emplace IED’s but have to ask permission to engage.

    As a former military man (20+ years Special Forces) dead is dead and each man no matter what country he is from paid the ultimate price to insure the safety of the free world. Stop this nonsense about who die at what rate, let each country provide what the can and work together as a team to rote this cancerous group from existence.

    This is just the beginning as I see it, wait until the countries in Europe with large Muslim populations (who refuse to assimilate into those countries cultures) gain the majority due to higher birth rates and start to dictate new laws and legal systems. This will end up being the next crusades and instead of stars and stripes, maple leaves, RAF markings, aircraft will have big red crosses on them. I say, stay the course and insure that the job is done and done right. What the liberals just don’t get is that the radical portion of Islam is not interested in talking or negotiating they are only interested in cutting your head off.

    February 5, 2010 at 2:49 am | Report abuse |
  39. Michael

    I am a Muslim and live in New Zealand. I believe the Taliban have not lost, but are lost. They are not true Muslims, but intelligent extremists with distorted minds. They are too proud to admit being wrong, and too ashamed to come back to true Islam. If we condemn the Taliban, they will fight to the bitter end, if we forgive them then the world's sanctimonious will be up in arms. It looks like a no-win situation, only if a person, a leader with extraordinary diplomatic and persuasive skills can the minds and hearts of these wayward Taliban be turned around, convinced they are on the wrong path. If you have nothing left in this world, you do still have hope...

    February 5, 2010 at 2:16 am | Report abuse |
  40. Austin

    i hate all the people who say,"well why dont we give them jobs, and not kill people?", because the "terroists" dont want our help. they are to busy shooting and blowing up our troops. all the brave soldiers are risking thier lives so we can sit on our happy butts and complain. to those you who are not grateful, take a good long look at the families of those soldiers who have died and who are over there risking their lives, then think about complaining because of you problems here where your safe.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:47 pm | Report abuse |
  41. Matt

    J.A – you used a word "detrimental". Well... strange word and strange world. let me remind some facts than.
    During Third Anglo-Afghan War the USSR had provided financial and not only aid to Afghanistan as a result Brits were defeated. Over time cooperation between Soviet and Afghan military was getting stronger and stronger until 1975 when Jamiat Islami party tried to overthrow the Soviet oriented government in Kabul. That was the reason for Soviet invasion in 1979 which ended up in 1989. In 1981 USA started to support mujahideen (later Taliban) in forms of training, equipment and money. Thanks to brilliant guys such Charlie Wilson, Michael Vickers and Michael Pillsbury, a bureaucratic resistance of Regan's administration was overcame and between 1885 and 1986 we provided hundreds of Stinger missiles to Afghanistan. Shortly after the United States committed $600 million in aid per year. The money was coming also from the United Kingdom, and Saudi Arabia. It was begin of the end of USSR empire. By 1989 a 100000 troop strong USRR army was defeated – not in military terms but financially. Instead of helping to rebuild Afghanistan and establish our permanent presents there ... we backed off. We were loved and welcomed there... and we backed off! "Detrimental" – strange word. Well... now we are there. Doesn't look familiar? Tell me J.A who is financing Taliban? What about cutting off the money flow, arms flow and taking care about those drug addicts in our countries to eliminate cash flow. Of course it would not be easy but can be done – if we are united. Bringing freedom there – forget it – what freedom. You can bring horse to the river but you can't make it drink. By the way J.A – would you please remind me what is our mission there and what our objectives are? The way I see it, somebody is making money on our and ours comrades in arms blood (doesn't matter from where they are).
    "Detrimental" – strange word and strange world.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:10 pm | Report abuse |
  42. Joe from Atlanta

    I did 6years in the US Air Force but that was back in 1972 and in a more sane world. Now it's my sons time to serve. He's a US Marine Infantry Officer heading to Afghanistan and will certainly be involved it the fight for Marjah. The US Marines are primarilly in command over there with an enormous fighting force. However as most of these Marines will tell you the British and Cacadians are in this fight for the long haul too. A lot of these Forward Operating Bases over there are manned by Marines,Brits and Canadians.
    Additionally I too support the physcology behind announcing where the next battle will be. This isn't a conventional war and if that's what it takes to save some of our lives than so be it and get these guys back home!

    February 4, 2010 at 9:57 pm | Report abuse |
  43. RickieBoy

    Hey Ricky, I like your handle, while I have no problem with removing Iraq from the world list of trouble makers, I even think we should have been over there with you, but to call Iraq part of the war on terror, man what a stretch.

    February 4, 2010 at 7:33 pm | Report abuse |
  44. Richard T

    Alex – great reply! I am a non-religious person in the US who has traveled many places in the world and I don't really care whether a person is black, white, atheist, Christian or Muslim. I do care if that person wants to harm me or my friends.

    February 4, 2010 at 6:08 pm | Report abuse |
  45. Alex, UK

    In response to, 'Jihad', As a non-religious person living in one of the most diverse cities on the planet I live and work with people form all sorts of backgrounds and faiths. Be they Muslim, sikh, hindi, etc.. I am friends with them all and find knowing them gives me a fresh perspective on the world we live in. People like you jihad are a disgrace to yourself, your country and your religion.

    "your constant claim of civilization and modernity has shown its real side of darkness, inhumanity and cruel treatment of others!!"

    If that doesn't sound like a load of brainwashed nonsense I don't know what does.

    February 4, 2010 at 5:10 pm | Report abuse |
  46. Michael

    I hope we all finally defeat these terrorists, by why dont muslims throughout the world see what these terrorists are doing? like how many innocent fellow muslims they are massacaring? Instead they speak death to america and israel, what about the taliban and al quaeda who kill more muslims than we ever have?

    February 4, 2010 at 4:58 pm | Report abuse |
  47. Jihad

    You guys show your true colors of hate and dislike of anything that is not you! Anything that is not WHITE or Western! Instead of understanding and respecting those who look different or have different way of life, you opt for anger and killing. Who is the barbarian? Your constant claim of civilization and modernity has shown its real side of darkness, inhumanity and cruel treatment of others!!

    Good luck for your "civilizing mission"!!

    February 4, 2010 at 4:15 pm | Report abuse |
  48. Ricky

    United States: 5,186 killed, 1 POW/MIA, 11 ex-POW/MIA[1][2]
    United Kingdom: 395 killed, 25 ex-POW/MIA [1][2]
    Canada: 135 killed [2]
    Other Coalition forces: 489 killed, 1 ex-POW/MIA[1][2]

    These are the most up-to-date deaths and ect. on The War on Terror.... source is wikipedia

    Just to clear up whose "spilling blood."

    February 4, 2010 at 2:11 pm | Report abuse |
  49. Michelle

    Big Tex – Amen sir!!! My son is one of the brave Marines over there and will be one of many among this push....Semper Fi and God Bless America

    February 4, 2010 at 1:11 pm | Report abuse |
  50. BigTex

    To all, you are all right but instead of bickering against our selfs and being united we fight over stupid stuff!!! As the idiotic ideals the muslims have we are doing what they want tearing our country and allies apart. The U.S. will always be in first because we are who what we believe: "FREEDOM". To bad we have and put up with stupid s.....t in our country but this is what we are about. I have one thing to say to the people that complain about the US, (OMAR), GET THE H..LL OUT OF MY COUNTRY AND GO BACK TO YOURS!!!!!!! Do not come to my country and complain on how we are. Oh, I forgot those countries do not have freedom of speech or just freedom and you will probably get hunged or something cut off. I am a 22 year veteran and I think any loss of life is a disaster but as long as we have people like the Taliban or any other race that thinks they are better than another we will always have conflict. For you, Omar, you and your kind are cowards and always will be. I hope you get you 72 virgins soon. Dumb A.. Keep your stupid comments to yourself. You belong to the same race as the lawyers that try to change this world and our country. GOD bless the US and its Allies. As this country was based on: "In God we Trust".

    February 4, 2010 at 12:23 pm | Report abuse |
  51. DoubleW

    Everyone who keeps arguing about our allies' contribution to the war can just go to icasualties.org and get a current rundown on casualties, nationalities, and totals by year, as well as many news stories relating to the war. If people were more interested in discussing the facts than in playing verbal one-upmanship, they would learn what they are talking about before shooting off their mouths, and we might actually get somewhere.

    February 4, 2010 at 11:37 am | Report abuse |
  52. Richard T

    Well said, RickiBoy, David, and others. We have much more in common than divides us. It is an effort that will benefit all of us, including the Afghan people, when the extremists are out of the way.

    February 4, 2010 at 11:19 am | Report abuse |
  53. abm

    I dont think physical combat is the way out of the problen in Afgan, there is need for more talk than combat. These Taliban are human being, agreed thay are extrimists, but i still believe dialogue is the way out of this.

    February 4, 2010 at 10:08 am | Report abuse |
  54. BlaZe

    @ Lynn #10... give them jobs and food? This is something the Afgan Govt. should be doing. Why is the United States responsible for feeding the rest of the world... not that it isn't a good thing but how about we give our citizens jobs and food first, then take care of everyone else who is trying to help themselves... do you realize how much money the average American has given to causes? Untold billions, I would like to know when will we start helping ourselves, fixing our infrastructures, providing jobs and food to Americans that are struggling everyday... when? I am sick and tired of Americans flipping the bill on everything that happens around the world, meanwhile our country lays in debt owing money to other countries... we have idiots in office on ALL SIDES mind you that are not taking care of business. It makes you wonder... at least it makes me wonder... how long will America with all it's generosity survive?

    February 4, 2010 at 9:46 am | Report abuse |
  55. Tim

    the answer to larry's question is as follows A total of 139 Canadian Forces personnel have been killed since the mission began in 2002.[1]
    The number of Canadian Forces' fatalities resulting from Canadian military activities in Afghanistan is the largest for any single Canadian military mission since the 25th Canadian Brigade suffered 309 combat-related deaths (and approximately 145 non-combat deaths in-theatre) in the Korean War between 1950 and 1953. A total of 139 Canadian Forces personnel have been killed since the mission began in 2002.[1]

    Larry the us will always take the forefront of any war we are in but that still doesnt take away everyone else uk, or candian sacrifices. we have more troops on the ground than any of them, so our numbers are going to be higher, period point made move on.

    February 4, 2010 at 7:39 am | Report abuse |
  56. Nathan

    When I read most comments here, I realise how ignorant and indifferent people here are to the plight of the Afghan people. They either have to be oppressed by the Taliban or killed by NATO ! If this is the only choice, then no wonder they choose the Taliban ! Your soldiers are not there to build or help but to fight. This is the truth. No "hearts and minds campaign" is ever going to convince them that its better to be a live slave than die free! The only way out of this is to retreat out of Afghanistan, help with job-creation and proper elections so they control their own country. The only other option is to keep fighting for decades and spend more of the poor taxpayers money as China, India etc. keep getting stronger economically and militarily so you may have to try facing down a Chinese invasion of california someday soon !! How would them apples taste ?

    February 4, 2010 at 7:03 am | Report abuse |
  57. omar

    Even if the U.S does defeat the Taliban, which it won't, a newer group is going to emerge and continue fighting the U.S. That is a promise. The U.S will never have success.

    February 4, 2010 at 6:45 am | Report abuse |
  58. Lisa


    Im sorry but ur wrong australia has lost more troups in the wars then america and england

    February 4, 2010 at 6:11 am | Report abuse |
  59. najeeb

    I still can’t understand what is the logic behind telling the enemy about your schedule, and also in city of 100,000 people they can easily adjust themselves because they have many sympathizers. In the day time they will be your friend but the same will attack you at night.

    February 4, 2010 at 2:20 am | Report abuse |
  60. J.A.

    I think posting this kind of information is detrimental to the mission at hand, and I can say that with some confidence.

    February 4, 2010 at 1:45 am | Report abuse |
  61. Matt

    I completely agree with Bob W from Huston.
    In Art of the War Sun Tzu said:
    Hence to fight and conquer in all your battles is not supreme excellence; supreme excellence consists in breaking the enemy’s resistance without fighting.
    A lot of our resources (human and financial) are involved there. They are winning already! Our life stile has changed permanently due to terrorism, our civil liberty is limited because of that. It was not coincident that on 9/11 the target was finacial center of the world. We all see result – the entire world suffers financial crisis. Of course it was one of many reasons. It is nothing new in history when less developed (read tribal) states are destroying more developed civilizations. We have to protect yourself of course but we can not become barbarians like them. If we do – what is the difference. Special measures are needed for special situation – that is obvious. I have very mixed filing about it. My daughter served 18 month in this hell. So – should we kick the ass... or not. The longer we are there the smaller chances we have. Who benefit from this situation? I guess China.

    February 4, 2010 at 1:35 am | Report abuse |
  62. eddie jalalli

    Hey people lets get one thing straight for every us, uk, canadian, or any other nato's troops that are getting killed, they probably kill at least 20 afghan per every troops that they loose.

    February 4, 2010 at 12:34 am | Report abuse |
  63. RT

    I think it's not good to tell to everyone where the next operation should be say at Marjah?

    May be it's gonna take on another place or just simply psy for the opponent to reconsider what – surrender???

    Shorter engagement period – less loss of life; re-construction might be lesser of course and so with it the accompanying business boom?

    February 4, 2010 at 12:31 am | Report abuse |
  64. Bobby

    well said David

    February 3, 2010 at 8:51 pm | Report abuse |
  65. David

    Larry; you're a simpleton. Not only has Canada fought shoulder to shoulder with the U.S., England and Australia since the start they have done so while their Liberal population screams get out. They're there thanks to Prime Minister Stephen Harper and the Conservatives who know this has to be done or we're all done. Furthermore, Larry, Canada is the other 1/2 of J-TAF, a 2,000 strong coalition of Special-Ops guys that have been over there since the beginning and probably before the beginning. Specially trained for just this kind of work, they have been busy doing right without the media's glare. And one last thing Larry, The U.S. has a population of 300 million, Canada 30 million. If your looking for identical numbers of dead you're going to be disappointed however, if you're looking for an able, determined, well trained warrior to ship out with, Canadian forces are every bit as good as the Aussies, Brits and Yanks and that Larry, is saying something.

    February 3, 2010 at 8:43 pm | Report abuse |
  66. ahistorian

    President Obama has put the fight against terrorists back on the right course by going after them where they live. Bush's disasterous foray into Iraq for no good reason took the focus away from where it should have been, on Al-Queda and Taliban bases in Afganistan and Pakistan. By killing the terrorists in there nests, we can finally exterminate these rodents. Something that should have been done many years ago.

    February 3, 2010 at 8:15 pm | Report abuse |
  67. Bobby

    Right on JT. The media has altered perceptions since they have been around. There is propaganda, and there are some things that just don't need to become so public and blown out of proportion. The Internet is altering the world, we are all connected now. Things are exposed and it can be good, but in times of war with lives on the line.... There are certainly negative consequences.

    February 3, 2010 at 8:04 pm | Report abuse |
  68. garth

    the problem with this war is the way its being fought!we roll thru and whip sum ass!then move on to the next town leaving the last town ungarded!then the taliban move back in like rats when we move on to the next battle!there needs 2 be an attack force then a holding force!why wer the germans so hard to beat in ww2?thay left no ground ungarded!!!as for leaven soilders in fortified compounds in each town being shot at everyday!thay cant evan see where the shots come from!wot a joke!!the 'outpost tactic' didnt work in veitnam!why use it again!!!war is war!we hav to b all in or not in at all!!flood the place!so sending more troops is the only way!but not jst the U.S every country needs 2 step up and solve the problem!!!the fighting part of this war needs 2 be wraped up fast!so we can help rebuid afganistan!leave them a well traind army so thay can look after themselfs!and be in control of ther own future and lives!to be free jst like us!

    February 3, 2010 at 8:00 pm | Report abuse |
  69. RickieBoy

    Larry, keep an open mind, my southern brother.

    casualty numbers I found in 2 min (may not be up to date);

    US ; 882
    UK ; 251
    CAN : 138

    I think my country (CAN) has slipped since world war 2, and in alot of cases hasn't always done all it could have, but in this case, in afghanistan, I'm sorry Larry, you are wrong.

    RIP; Sgt. John Faught & Master Cpl. Scott Vernelli, 2 CANADIAN soldiers KIA, Afganistan, from my hometown, Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, Canada, you will be remembered!

    February 3, 2010 at 7:48 pm | Report abuse |
  70. Fahat

    No Country ever won a battle in Afghanistan , not even alexander the great ...one has to study history before finding themselves in the grave..

    February 3, 2010 at 7:43 pm | Report abuse |
  71. Mangydog

    Denmark, Population 5.5 million. Combat losses in Afhanistan: 31
    Canada, Population 33 million. Combat losses in Afghanistan: 139
    UK: Population 61 million. Combat losses in Afghanistan: 251
    US: Population 304 million. Combat losses in Afghanistan: 882

    While straightup numbers-wise, yes, the US has lost more men in combat in Afghanistan. But considered in losses per million:

    Denmark, 5.6 KIA per million
    Canada, 4.2 KIA per million
    UK: 4.1 KIA per million
    US: 2.9 KIA per million

    The Butchers Bill for Denmark, Canada and the UK on a per capita basis has been greater then that of the US. While the same cannot be said about any other NATO or Allied nation, these three great Nations and Allies have been pulling more then their respective weights. Much respect to the Danes, Canadians and the Brits.

    February 3, 2010 at 7:41 pm | Report abuse |
  72. Bob W in Houston

    I give a lot of thought to the solution in Afghanistan...all nations need to cooperate in breaking the cultural hold of the Taliban...with violence;, yes...even extreme violence, But the real progress will come when we train women to operate heavy machinery, back-hoes, etc. and maintain them so they (women) can make a genuine contribution to an agrarian economy....turn Afghanistan into a garden of lakes and crops and the rest of the Mid-East will fall into line....we should have done this years ago instead of invading Iraq....it would have saved us $Billions, thousands of lives, and been the right thing to do all along.

    February 3, 2010 at 7:31 pm | Report abuse |
  73. Larry

    Mark: You & I have done Our time in the Military!!! I wonder how many that Post on Here has??? They talk like They have the right to speak for everyone... But I wonder if They serve the right to do so??? When I post it is because I want to defend all The People not just Myself!!! If They don't like how I do it... That is Their problem not mine!!! I just tell it How I see it... Let Them prove Me wrong!!! Not just say I'm wrong... That doesn't make Me wrong just because They think I am!!!

    February 3, 2010 at 7:29 pm | Report abuse |
  74. Larry

    G.R.R.: Tell Me something I don't no!!! France said after losing 12 of Theirs they were cutting Their troops... I never hear on the News about how many The United States & England loses... If Canada is losing as many as Them!!! Why doesn't the News say United States, England & Canada??? Could it be because the United State & English lose the most of Everyone involved put together??? You all of You want to call Me a lyr... Prove where I'm wrong??? Other wise don't say nothing!!! I'm only posting what I hear on the News... Excuse Me if I'm wrong... Tell the News Stations to tell about all loses if You want Me more accurate!!!

    February 3, 2010 at 7:22 pm | Report abuse |
  75. Larry

    Jayt: Thats not what I hear on the news!!! It is the Americans that go first to Where the real fighting is!!! England takes another province but not in the Hot Spot... I never heard where Canada is... So put a Article on here So I will know the truth??? I can only go by what I hear on the news here... I don't know what BBS has to say & for sure don't care what Fox says!!!

    February 3, 2010 at 7:14 pm | Report abuse |
  76. Richard T

    Larry – No benefit in criticizing our friends. Canada, UK and others have been there with us.

    February 3, 2010 at 7:12 pm | Report abuse |
  77. Larry

    Kelly: I spent 6 years in the Army from 1959 to 1965!!! How long were You in the Military??? What I'm saying is The United States & English has lost More Military than any other Country... How many has Canada lose??? How would I know??? I said before if They loss as many as We did I would apologize if I was wrong!!! But Please if They didn't You apologize to me... If we lose 100 thousand & they lose 100 I would be right!!! I'm not say that is the figure of either side... Because I don't hear the figures every day!!!

    February 3, 2010 at 7:09 pm | Report abuse |
  78. Andrew

    By declaring the target, you get a huge psychological advantage (if you win the battle).

    "I told you where I was going to attack, you fortified this area, and we still came in and wiped you out"

    The next time the Marines announce their target, the less-loyal Taliban will scramble to get out of the killing zone.

    NATO morale up, Taliban morale down...half the battle won!

    February 3, 2010 at 7:07 pm | Report abuse |
  79. Larry

    J.C.: I bet it doesn't come close to the United States & England!!! Why don't You tell Me the lose of Each Country fighting and We all can See Who is right & Who is wrong with My remark!!! If I'm wrong I will admit it... Will You???

    February 3, 2010 at 7:00 pm | Report abuse |
  80. jt

    Take out the camera's and the news media so the soldiers can do their job.

    February 3, 2010 at 6:57 pm | Report abuse |
  81. Larry

    It sounds like a win win to me too!!! Because if both Afghanistan & Pakistan work together... Hopefully We will get out of Their faster!!!

    February 3, 2010 at 6:57 pm | Report abuse |
  82. Mark

    God Bless the guys who have to fight this action. I tried to volunteer a few years back for reserve but was 11 years too old!! Hey i don't care. Use me for target practice if that will help. Good luck and take it to the bad guys.

    February 3, 2010 at 6:47 pm | Report abuse |
  83. roy wheeler

    good job ,now buy the time we get there all that will be left is a couple of old ladies

    February 3, 2010 at 6:41 pm | Report abuse |
  84. vik

    Hi jc, They will never condemn the violence,because they think they are doing it right. Very few condemn it. Even if they have stayed in United States for years,they will never support this country(it's a true fact,though they don't do this in open). No suprise,none of these countries are democratic,because they believe in being dominant and supreme. This is affecting the whole world and their country as well.

    February 3, 2010 at 6:31 pm | Report abuse |
  85. Phil

    Why would the military pre-announce such a major offensive? The hope, it would seem, is to get the Taliban to move out of Marjah in advance of any such assault so there will be less fighting, less military casualities and less damage to the civilian population and the agricultural infrastructure in this bread-basket region. A victory could then be declared and new agricultural development would be possible in a relatively short period. The result: the first offensive following this 30,000 US military troop surge worked, setting the stage for other areas and further massive offensives and encoraging the Taliban and other tribal groups to join the Afghan government supported by NATO forces.

    February 3, 2010 at 6:31 pm | Report abuse |
  86. g.r.r.

    we have MANY other nations there fighting and spilling their blood on this.

    February 3, 2010 at 6:27 pm | Report abuse |
  87. Andrew

    Jon : But just one problem there.....don't tell the enemy when and where you are going to attack.

    Disagree. This is NOT a conventional war, where your forces will attack with thousands of tanks, troops and planes to defeat a similarly armed enemy waiting for your attack. In that case, you would be dumb to say where the attack will take place.

    Here, the Taliban KNOW where they are strong, NATO knows where they are strong, and the Taliban knows that NATO knows.

    By this declaration, you are telling the Taliban : "All of your men in Marjah will die. Run away now." The Taliban will obviously order their men to stay and fight – BUT this will create dissensions within Taliban ranks "Why should I stay and certainly die, when my commander allowed his brother-in-law and other friends to go to another (safer) province?"

    February 3, 2010 at 6:21 pm | Report abuse |
  88. Miles

    You took the words right out of my mouth Jon. The Taliban are probably meling away right now, only to return another day.

    February 3, 2010 at 6:18 pm | Report abuse |
  89. Richard T

    JC – yes, Canada and the UK have also contributed their fair share to the effort. We're all in this together and have to finish the job. A united front makes us much more likely to succeed.

    February 3, 2010 at 6:10 pm | Report abuse |
  90. hamtaro

    the ANA are hopeless. just go it alone.

    February 3, 2010 at 6:02 pm | Report abuse |
  91. Lynn

    Instead of killing everyone over there; how about we give them jobs, food and education. Every time we kill innocent people we just create more terrorist. Give them something they are not willing to lose.... A real reason to live.

    February 3, 2010 at 6:00 pm | Report abuse |
  92. QDH

    We're the US military , they're the Taliban (militia at best). We can tell them the day , month and second that we will come and they have no real recourse other than run or die.

    February 3, 2010 at 5:53 pm | Report abuse |
  93. jayt

    Larry: I have to agree with JC. Our Canadian friends are right by our side as they have always been and deserve much recognition and respect. The U.S. could never hope for a better friend and ally then Canada and I for one very much appreciate their sacrifices and friendship.

    February 3, 2010 at 5:50 pm | Report abuse |
  94. Kelly

    Thanks for minimizing all the Canadians contributions to the efforts Larry. Go **** yourself.

    February 3, 2010 at 5:43 pm | Report abuse |
  95. Jon

    Yeah thats what I'm talking about hoorah!!! But just one problem there.....don't tell the enemy when and where you are going to attack.

    February 3, 2010 at 3:31 pm | Report abuse |
  96. jc

    what really pisses me off is that these sadists, Taliban and others are destroying the world,s perception of ALL Muslims. It is not all Muslims that are cold hearted killers !! BUT on the other hand if they feel that there faith is being destroyed by these a-holes, WHY do they not speak-out in a unified voice condemning there actions !!! Can they ( Muslims) not understand that without there unified world wide condemnation of these barbarians, there young ones stand a great chance of being radicallized and DIE for a worthless criminal idea of the Muslim faith.

    February 3, 2010 at 1:33 pm | Report abuse |
  97. cerberus

    yes lucien is right we need to crush the last taliban stronghold and kill as many of them as we can.

    February 3, 2010 at 12:55 pm | Report abuse |
  98. jc

    Larry, hate to break your bubble but have you read of the Canadian casualies of late and where they are. OUR countrymen and women are also spilling there blood and dieing for the cause, so be careful of your inaccurate statements please and thank you !!!!!

    February 3, 2010 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
  99. Larry

    That is great that We are going after Their Major Forces!!! My problem is Why is it That the Other Countries fighting There aren't involved with it too??? Aren't They There also to help clean Them Out??? Otherwise what do We need Them There for???

    February 3, 2010 at 11:08 am | Report abuse |
  100. Lucien Alexandre Marion

    Breaking the influence of the Taliban, I beleive is a strategic key for USA General McChristal as Top Military Commander in that country, this with the added Forces of USA and all those of Nato participating countries, plus the offer of Peace to moderate Taliban. It could be of a significance and influence in that country.Like General McChristal declared in his own words when he met with Elders, there is HOPE for a better tomorrow for this country. As a Canadian I am very proud of our figthing men and women and all of those making a difference for our values of Freedom. Thank You

    February 3, 2010 at 10:37 am | Report abuse |
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