February 13th, 2010
03:00 PM ET

Reporter's notebook: IEDs, firefights, snipers

CNN correspondent Atia Abawi is embedded with U.S. troops who launched the Operation Moshtarak offensive early Saturday morning, Afghanistan time. As the daylight ends there, here is an edited transcript of her first day's account she gave to CNN's Betty Nguyen via phone:

There seems to be a lull in the fighting, but that's not to say it's not going to start up again  when it's dark. We're actually embedded with the Alpha company. And when they came in, the first thing that they hit was a very tough terrain. They came on farm land. They came in the pitch black night and the first four wounded were not serious wounds but still had to be medevac-ed out because of terrain, not because of enemy fire.

But as the sun rose and the fighting began, the Taliban found their target and they started to fire. They were running through the fields, caught in open fields, finding their way to a compound. In that compound, there have been sporadic battles with U.S. forces as well as the Taliban insurgency.

And from the distance, you can still hear the fighting between other companies within the U.S. Marines and different Taliban leaders in different areas in the city.

On top of that - also very loud explosions coming in by vehicles. Some of the explosions are from assault machines that the Marines have which have been able to find IEDs and detonate them before causing casualties.

That being said, Marines are within the city limits, finding IEDs particularly with the IED detective dogs searching those out and also detonating them. And although the fighting seems to be in a lull state, it has been going on all day.

The city of Marjah is actually fairly built up compared to most rural Afghan cities throughout the provinces of Afghanistan. The Taliban are actually using homes, civilian homes, to fire at the Marines, including some compounds that may be 400, 500 meters away.

And there were two civilians who were injured by the fire, and they came to the U.S. troops, got medical attention, got out, and the family then told them that the Taliban were actually using their homes to fire at troops.

And they also said - there are more Taliban fighters waiting it out, assessing what's going on and possibly waiting for attack in the next hours, maybe days.

When it comes to the Afghan people, and one thing that I've noticed from villages throughout Helmand and throughout Afghanistan, it's not necessarily that they are against NATO forces. It's that they want peace, that they're also afraid of civilian casualties.

And that's something the Marines have been keeping in mind. They are abiding by the tactical directive that has been placed by Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the top NATO commander in Afghanistan.

And the directive is, if you suspect a Taliban fighter or insurgent fighter is within a compound, and you also expect civilians are in the area, you do not fire. And they have been abiding by that.

Our camerawoman, Mary Rogers, was actually filming the snipers who are targeting some of these Taliban fighters. And they have the equipment to assess who's out there. They were able to distinguish a woman within this abandoned bazaar, and they did not fire.

But they were also able to distinguish a Taliban fighter holding an AK-47, holding a radio, signaling to his other fighters in the area, and they were able to kill him.

soundoff (77 Responses)
  1. N.Greenlief

    I think certain people leaving ignorant comment and think they know what they are talking about just need to hush their face seriously.Digust me..

    February 21, 2010 at 2:34 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Alex

    They can send as many troops as they wish, they can kill as many "insurgents"as they wish anyways they won't win Afghans hearts, that means the war is lost.

    February 20, 2010 at 9:06 am | Report abuse |

    haha a BARRETT??? you are trying to sound like you know what you are talking about. anyone can mumble off rifle MFGS. thats easy. it is clearly not a barrett. i would say that it can be narrowed down to a few rifles, but not totally identified as a particular one. so inconclusive is what i would go with. regardless, good job marines. dont let anything from home take our focus away. while your there, keep that focus on that front sight post. you wil be home shortly. and i will be taking yalls spot in a few weeks 🙂 GET SOME AND GOD SPEED!

    February 19, 2010 at 4:52 pm | Report abuse |
  4. darrell mays

    my son is over there i hope his sarg lets him shoot back at some of the taliban without feeling like he done something wrong

    February 19, 2010 at 9:22 am | Report abuse |
  5. Nick Tynes

    i support you guys over there fighting, keep up the good job, Support the troops, HOOOOAHH!!!!!!!

    February 16, 2010 at 8:14 pm | Report abuse |
  6. The Wife

    I just want to say I am extremely appreciative that this picture and the video that it comes from is available. The person who a few of you are criticizing is my husband and this is the only "connection" we have to him right now while this operation is going on. So, Atia, keep up the amazing work you are doing!

    Imran, you talk about how the Taliban are such courageous fighters, which is so obviously not true. A courageous fighter does not use innocent women and children as shields. They do not hide amongst innocent people making them a target and risking their lives. These types of acts can only be the work of someone who is loyal to Shaitan, not Allah wouldn't you think? My husband would never use his own child to protect himself, but the Taliban use their children over and over. Using innocent people in such a way only proves that the Taliban are not only less than stellar fighters since they have to resort to such tactics, but that they are miserable human beings who I doubt will be rewarded with any kind of paradise.

    February 15, 2010 at 9:39 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Godfred Louis-Jensen, Denmark

    'Marine Mom' and the like would truly expect a murderous superpower and your camp followers to be 'blessed'?


    PS: Shame on the U,S. – and may your 'God' be with you!

    February 15, 2010 at 8:06 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Marine Mom

    To N.Greenlief, i just wanted to say your words are so true.I couldnt have said it better myself. There are alot of rude people in this world that have something to say and have no clue what there talking about. When my son came home from Iraq in 08 he had many people say god bless you because they know they couldn't do what he does. But they were proud of him. All the love and support makes them stronger. God bless all the soilders....

    February 15, 2010 at 2:17 pm | Report abuse |
  9. USMC0300

    Correction: I meant to say Let's get "Osama", where he is, and bring our troops home.

    February 15, 2010 at 11:17 am | Report abuse |
  10. USMC0300

    Thank you, Atia for your bravery and reporting. May god bless our troops and the families of the dead and wounded. May their aim be true and accurate for all our men and women in the combat zone.

    While this war, like all wars, will have its critics and opponents, the beauty of this dialogue demonstrates what freedom is all about. Imran, Bilal, your right and ability to criticize is being protected by those Marines and soldiers dying in afghanistan. Ironic, isn't it?

    Last but not least: Let's get Obama, where ever he is, and bring our troops home!

    February 15, 2010 at 11:15 am | Report abuse |
  11. N.Greenlief

    To PROUD MARINE MOM,my husband is the XO of B Co.And thank you.Thanks b to all these BRAVE,non selfish men out there giving all these IGNORANT peope making such disgusting comments on here the right to run there mouths.Have a little bit of respect.Imran BE QUITE seriously.Our troops out there keep getting better and better,while the Taliban are the COWARDS you sad man,they use their own people to hide behind placing mines and IED's around the city so no one can leave knowing our good men out there are TRYING their best to avoid civilian casualties,they are using their own people as SHIELDS.So stop talking something up that you know nothing about.Our troops are helping Afghans not trying hurt them,everyone one of those Troops making sacrifices and some paying the ultimate price with their lives for people like you.You should be humbled by them not bitter and ignorant and heartless.For they are all much braver than you,your the coward right along with the Taliban.May God bless you with some REAL knowledge and sense.God bless those out there and the families who stand behind them waiting anxiously as well as those who support our Troops.I am proud of my Husband and all he does,I am blessed,I truly am...

    February 15, 2010 at 9:15 am | Report abuse |
  12. jules

    dsd many blessings and to the rest of the parents and children and spouses and all the significant other of those there.
    Good luck to our guys and girls and a sharp eye and quick trigger finger and see them all home sound and safe God Bless America our troops and their family and support

    February 15, 2010 at 1:01 am | Report abuse |
  13. Go get um!

    My son is a sniper in the 1/6. Thanks to all that are giving blessings. It is with fear and pride that I watch the news!

    February 14, 2010 at 9:51 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Willa Lock

    I really apreciate our forces and thejob they do. If we were not over there fighting they would figure out ways to get into our country and hurt us. Good Job to our men and women of our armed forces

    February 14, 2010 at 7:57 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Barb

    I am not sure if I want to thank the media or not – but I am guilty of following them because like you all I am interested in what is happening as close to the timeline as I can get. To the family members of Marines – hello. Everyone makes sacrifices to support our loved ones in uniform. I am very proud of my Marine and will stand by my own pride just returning from my tour in Iraq – our sacrifice to one another is no send off or welcome home – until the Marines and Army brings us together again. If you do not believe in the military as a whole, then believe in the one who serves. We do as we are told because there is a reason to it all – you may never know all the facts, but trust me in the end it is a clearer picture. To all my fellow servicemembers – no matter what uniform you wear – THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE TO YOUR COUNTRY AND THE WORLD!

    February 14, 2010 at 6:30 pm | Report abuse |
  16. Godfred Louis-Jensen, Denmark

    I note that my little comment yesterday (February 13th) has been eliminated? May I not suggest that (to an outsider) it seems as if 'America' has gone completely bunkers?

    Godfred Louis-Jensen, Denmark

    PS: As pointed out today by my countryman, Torben Schmidt (February 14th, 2010
    12:19 am ET), Danish troops are regrettably participating in this senseless US/NATO carnage too (as we did in Iraq and Serbia (1999).
    However our efforts were never followed up by even a fraction of nationalist 'comments' such as yours – the like of which may not have been heard since the heydays of Nazi Germany...

    Shame on America!

    February 14, 2010 at 6:15 pm | Report abuse |
  17. imran

    nato will never win in afghanistan.you have not seen that a few taliban and a large force with modern equipment cannot defeat taliban because taliban have courage to fight.they trust on one god and nato soilders are coward.they can only do by killing civilians.bastards.

    February 14, 2010 at 3:33 pm | Report abuse |
  18. Pround Marine Mom

    N Greenlief THANK YOU! My son is in 1/6 B . I am so proud of him and those Marines. Sometimes it hard to swallow that my son is fighting for the freedom to let idiots like James print statements like his.

    February 14, 2010 at 2:22 pm | Report abuse |
  19. Ricky

    I hope that the retrogressive Taliban who don't want to educate women, and will try to kill them for going to school , will be defeated with the help of the almighty. I wish godspeed to all NATO boys, but I am in tears at the bravery of the US Marines.GOD BLESS AMERICA!!!

    February 14, 2010 at 2:07 pm | Report abuse |
  20. Tracy Marine Mom

    God bless all the soldier's who are fighting in Afghanistan especially my son!!!!! We love and support all of you and thank you for your sacrifice!! This is my son's company he is with the 1/6 and I appreciate the pictures from CNN because he has been in some of them and it's good to see his face. It is a shame that there are civilian casualties but if the Taliban were here fighting on our soil I seriously doubt they would even bother to save any civilian lives!!

    February 14, 2010 at 12:44 pm | Report abuse |
  21. Marine Mom

    My son is also in 3/6 and I know they are the best. They know what there doing . There keeping one step ahead. God bless all the guys and stay safe.

    February 14, 2010 at 12:22 pm | Report abuse |
  22. N Greenlief

    James please keep your ignorant comments to yourself.You have NO idea what you are talking about and family members of these troops do get on here and read this all.That comical you think the Taliban defends their country lol do some research there buddy,you talking out your butt.Wow just when you think you've heard it all.

    February 14, 2010 at 11:35 am | Report abuse |
  23. Marine Dad

    My son is a sniper in the 3/6. The sniper in this vpicture is using, either a M40A4 or the new A5, which the Marine are starting to use. The rifle is resting on the wall, with it's bipod extended, which gives the sniper a steady rest. The reason they are standing, insead of being in a hide, is because it's the beginning of the operation. They will take up hides in the days to come. Ooorah! Semper Fi

    February 14, 2010 at 11:34 am | Report abuse |
  24. N Greenlief

    Excuse I was confused my comment is directed to JOYCE...

    February 14, 2010 at 11:28 am | Report abuse |
  25. N Greenlief

    My Husband is out there and this is hard to see at times but it's reality as scared as I am I am very very proud.To the comment below the last comment..You have no idea whats going on out there right now or why as you say,he was so called "exsposed"show some support not criticism.Sorry but its irritating.Who cares what range as long as he is getting the job done I am sure he knows what he is doing and who cares how the camera man was able to get the pictures in combat conditions,they did and they are as well brave and those men up there are someones sons and Husbands so I am sure there spouses and parents will be grateful for a reporter being brave enough to capture that moment and PROUD.So show support as I said,those men deserve more credit.Thanks and God bless everyone that has shown their support and gratitude.

    February 14, 2010 at 11:26 am | Report abuse |
  26. Mark

    Actually a conventional army verses individual fighters can and is working, but it is required that the right tactics are in place to do it.

    A few years ago, in Iraq, the military was spread out into only a few giant, comfortable bases in urban environments. These bases served no good as they basically allowed the insurgents to roam the areas between and threaten and harass the civilian populations. In addition, there was little American presence patrolling these areas. The surge of Iraq was part of a new change of strategy to break up all of these major bases into smaller outposts that range from a few hundred to a platoon. These outposts were so well interwoven into the urban environments of Iraq, that it allowed troops to constantly patrol the areas and constantly engage in relationships with the civilian populations that provided that presence of constant security. When people begin seeing American soldiers at a constant rate, they begin to open up to them and engage. This requires a lot of troops to do, but is one way a conventional force can adapt to fight an unconvential one: sheer numbers.

    Less than a year ago, Afghanistan was in the same situation as Iraq was in, but worse. They had very little troops, barely enough to construct bases out of only a few cities and could never maintain a constant presence anywhere they went. They never were able to do large operations which left much of the country under the control of the Taliban. If you observe Marjeh on the map, you will notice this rural area makes up for the largest city in the Helmund province. It is apalling that it was not taken earlier, but there just wasn't the manpower to do it. The strategy they developed to take cities has been changed to embed more snipers into infantry units, pre-warn civilian populations that they are coming (makes the Taliban look bad and will demoralize them if they have had weeks to prepare and fail), and borrow the Fallujeh strategy of surrounding the entire city followed by a push from one direction. These 15,000 troops would probably have been specialized or even experienced in house-to-house, field-to-field combat of this magnitude based on the experiences of both wars. It would not surprise me if they're able to diffuse 90% of bombs, and keep a Taliban-to-Civilian accuracy rate of 50 to 1. They employ modified Abrams to shoot rocket teathers, loaded with explosives, to clear entire roads away of mines, establishing a foundation path for infantry to advance. This place is not urban, it is very spread out with farm houses and such, with very exposed positions for the enemy. If you assume that there's a sniper embedded with every unit, amounting to around 200-500 snipers in all, this operation will probably take around a week and a half to complete with sporadic fighting afterwards. Then security is brought in, outposts are setup, and a constant patrolling presence is established to squeeze every last drop of Taliban influence out.

    My only concern is what to do with the poppy fields.

    February 14, 2010 at 11:19 am | Report abuse |
  27. Teresa

    That's my husband's company. Good job guys, can't wait to have you all home!

    February 14, 2010 at 11:16 am | Report abuse |
  28. grunt


    February 14, 2010 at 8:48 am | Report abuse |
  29. grunt

    : Joyce nice critisizm,its clear you read gun books but have never done the dirty deed. ERIC YOU KNOW WHAT YOUR TALKING ABOUT AND A10GAU RIGHT ON. ITS NOT A SNIPER MISSION JOYCE ITS A OVERWATCH POSITION.

    February 14, 2010 at 8:47 am | Report abuse |
  30. Todd

    God bless all the forces that are doing a combined operation in this hostile area, they have taken much precaution to protect the locals but are also working to give them a better life like the we live.

    I am grateful for everyone of you and you are in my prays.


    February 14, 2010 at 8:43 am | Report abuse |
  31. Ramses

    Taliban, Al Khaida & Pakistan certainly must be contained. These three groups are a big threat to the region & the world. Pakistan is cooperating & working with Al Khaida. They know where Osama & Jawahiri are. Get them. This is the right approach.

    February 14, 2010 at 8:38 am | Report abuse |
  32. Bee

    Just remember this is a full North America Treaty Organization intitiative not just an America's. It went through UN to get approved and (SOME) funding as well. Don't blame Bush.
    Bravo Zula to the leaders and troops. You have our prayers!

    February 14, 2010 at 8:02 am | Report abuse |
  33. james

    why you people torture afgan people ? if 9/11 is the cause, why didn't you crush saudi arabia, since 19 out of 22 hijacker are saudi's ?
    you can't blame the taliban who defend their country from your occupation force,

    February 14, 2010 at 7:43 am | Report abuse |
  34. steve norton

    I have confidence that American and coalition military action can clean out the taliban. Unless the Afganistan government and military provide security in the future, things will go back to the way they are today. The local Afganistan people need security and a new way to make a living. Poppy farming is so evil on many levels. Afgan government corruption undermines the good will that we try to instill with our current strategy. All the issues need attention, not just the battle. God's speed to those fighting on our behalf and may god watch over them.

    P.S. Please refer to the recent bomber as " The Underpants Bomber " and not " The Christmas Bomber ". Christmas should not be associated with such a fanatical and misguided, person.

    February 14, 2010 at 7:42 am | Report abuse |
  35. James Peace

    Marjah just a new spirit of new strategy in the complicated Afpak (Afghanistan – Pakistan) war. Yes there are two wars ahead, two country which can't separate but same intelligent virus.

    The definition of victorious were not conventional. Taliban better understood of it than the U.S. or Nato Troops. We can see from their loyalty to their belief, leadership and even lose the soul. Makes this war so long and tiredness than Bush (or Powell's) imagine at the first war.

    We see the death of our troops as loss but the taliban's belief the death (in the holy war) is true victorious of trip from the world to paradise.

    What are you doing if you have this belief in the war? You'll be happy chosen to be a suicide bomber just like we're going to Disneyland with our family ...

    How long we can stay anymore?

    February 14, 2010 at 6:52 am | Report abuse |
  36. beanne

    Oh and Dave, newsflash...Bush has not been in office for over a year..try and keep up will ya!

    February 14, 2010 at 6:48 am | Report abuse |
  37. beanne

    I'm praying for all of you..and for Lt Col Christmas...( couldn't have a better name)...and cir will be praying for your son too....my son will be there soon.

    February 14, 2010 at 6:44 am | Report abuse |
  38. Cyndi

    Praying 24/7 at home and with others at church that with this enormous, careful effort will further the defeat of entrenched evil forces and help bring about the establishment of productive life for Afghanistan. Grateful for so many outstanding men and women giving their all for others.

    February 14, 2010 at 5:23 am | Report abuse |
  39. RT

    If I am an sniper specialist desiring for a photo session with you on the job, and I want you to be safe/alive after say within a minute or 2, you can take a nice shot of me in action with your camera at say a minimum of 1,000 meters away from the point of target.

    February 14, 2010 at 2:32 am | Report abuse |
  40. getahun

    I do not thik no one win this kind of war .Conventional army against individual fighters.Taliban does not have any kind of value for life that is why no one can defet this kind of tugs , they think like a gang member loyal to some one else. The coalition soldiers are fighting by the book. They worried about colateral damages , make sure people threat them like brothers or friends. This will never happen. In my opinion to win the war in Afganistan we need 10,000 Rangers and no rules of any kind of engagment. The war will be finish in one month. War is not only about heavy guns or smart weapons , it is MENTAL.

    February 14, 2010 at 1:34 am | Report abuse |
  41. eddie

    The Talibans are not going to fight now. They will hide, wait and come back when our troops leave. I don't see an easy solution to this mess.

    February 14, 2010 at 12:22 am | Report abuse |
  42. Torben Schmidt

    To Bob Wood. Thank you for pointing out, that the fighting is not just done by american,british and canadian forces. Forces from my country, Denmark, have now been fighting for more than two years, and stationed permanently there in the tough Helmand province, where the toughest fighting have been going on, fighting alongside the british, with both our special forces, armored infantry, and tank-units. We have also lost a lot of lives, and are also included in the operation moshtarak, among other forces, our leopard tanks. This is a NATO-operation. It's not just americans suffering.

    February 14, 2010 at 12:19 am | Report abuse |
  43. Opinion maker

    Every second word in some somments is "God protect"

    I would say, God save the souls of NATO generals who allready killed hundreads of thousends of innocent people in Afghanistan and Iraq

    February 14, 2010 at 12:05 am | Report abuse |
  44. david

    am i the only one who thinks it is totally rediculous that any of this is on the news? what happened to the element of suprise? i am a SSG in the US Army and I find that the United States and the media are completely unpatriotic for reporting anything going on during this combat operation. The US and the media are giving the enemy a chance at establishing a defense against our forces. What a joke we are. How can any of you give support without first establishing doubt?

    February 13, 2010 at 11:58 pm | Report abuse |
  45. ArriusWill

    Keeping in mind this is just the beginning of the operation... Let all hope this makes a difference... God bless our forces of freedom...

    Down with International Terrorist and Tyrants...

    -+- -+-

    February 13, 2010 at 10:23 pm | Report abuse |
  46. Ismail Zudianto

    Once again, it proves to the whole world that the Talibans are a bunch of bearded cowards. They use kids to plant IEDs and suicide-bombing, they use women for human shields, but when they have to go toe to toe with the enemy, they flee. They carry around AK-47 to intimidate the locals and tribal elders, but when battles erupt, they don’t really use it much.

    God bless the courageous soldiers of US and its allies. Afghanistan is not Vietnam, and you’re all now fighting for a very worthy cause

    February 13, 2010 at 10:04 pm | Report abuse |
  47. John

    Its an M40A3. The Barrett has an integral suppressor at the end of the barrel that vents the gasses created by the shot backwards at a 40 degree angle away from the shooter.

    February 13, 2010 at 9:23 pm | Report abuse |
  48. Eduardo

    Go there USA and send all of then to Hell.

    February 13, 2010 at 9:22 pm | Report abuse |
  49. Eduardo

    The USA is doing the right thing. The taliban's have to be eliminated. After I sow they destroyed a Buddhist Heritage old Temple in Pakistan, I thought with myself:"This kind of people, don't deserve to live". Go there USA and send all there to the Hell.

    February 13, 2010 at 9:19 pm | Report abuse |
  50. Mike

    The significance of this operation can't be overstated.
    For sure, our brave troopers will get it right.
    Hopefully we've done our homework and aligned the right resources to secure the peace after the battle.
    Say your prayers tonight for our young warriors joined battle.

    February 13, 2010 at 9:06 pm | Report abuse |
  51. Santos

    Gods speed to our troops theres a reason why you are the best the world has to offer.

    February 13, 2010 at 8:54 pm | Report abuse |
  52. Lyn

    God Bless our troops! Let them get the job done and get the heck out of there and back to us!!!

    February 13, 2010 at 8:53 pm | Report abuse |
  53. Liz R.

    My son is a Marine out there may God bless him and all the troops. They are doing so much for us. All we can do is pray for ALL. Every family deserves to have their love one come back home safe. Please...Please pray for all. May God bless American – the land of the free the home of the BRAVE. You must be a brave marine/soldier to be in the middle of so much danger. God bless them and guide them through safe roads.

    February 13, 2010 at 8:34 pm | Report abuse |

    Great job. As 15 year Army Veteran, the servicemen and women make me proud!!!

    U.S. ARMY VET (Desert Storm, Somalia)

    February 13, 2010 at 8:25 pm | Report abuse |
  55. SL

    Keep up the good work Marines. My prayers are with you and your families back home.

    February 13, 2010 at 7:47 pm | Report abuse |
  56. Judi

    Thanks for being there and risking your life to bring us the latest reports. If you see a Marine named Eric with a black dog named Dakota, tell him his Grandpa Jim and I are praying for them every minute.

    February 13, 2010 at 7:43 pm | Report abuse |
  57. Bilal Wardak

    Afghanistan is the land of brave and graveyard of empires. These marines soldiers and other british boys trying to act too tough had their part gifted to them when they fought the Afghans in early 1900s. Mark my words, the entire world is going to get defeated on Afghan soil. MARK MY WORDS!

    February 13, 2010 at 7:20 pm | Report abuse |
  58. dsd

    Atia, are you with Alpha Co of 1/6 Marines? That's my son's unit. OOH RAH. Keep the reports and pics coming, God bless you.

    February 13, 2010 at 7:10 pm | Report abuse |
  59. Brian

    The AK-47 has an effective range of 400 meters, so caution would be merited here. My son is deploying in a few weeks with the 1st Marine Division to Afghanistan and we chat about this often. One interesting point is that IED's are the biggest danger to troops in Afghanistan and Boeing has developed and is testing a highly effective (100% in a recent test with about two dozen IEDs) anti-IED laser weapon mounted on their remote piloted aircraft platform. I pray their is no bureaucratic delay in deploying this weapon to protect our Marines and soldiers and our allies. Semper Fi!

    February 13, 2010 at 6:55 pm | Report abuse |
  60. Christina

    "Ditto" to #1's comment!

    February 13, 2010 at 6:24 pm | Report abuse |
  61. Dan Nelson Lafayette,IN

    I pray that the NATO forces defeat the Taliban in a quick and decisive manner so that they cannot regroup and decide that the political process would be a better way for them and would put down their arms and quit fighting. In the name of Jesus I pray, Amen.

    February 13, 2010 at 6:09 pm | Report abuse |
  62. BiLL Cody

    Heart felt sympathy goes out to the families of our US Marine and the British soldier that paid the ultimate price today.

    February 13, 2010 at 6:01 pm | Report abuse |
  63. soldier

    " I can't tell from the picture if that is a Barrett M82 or an M40A3."

    Okay, then you clearly don't know anything about those weapons, so don't comment about it like you do.

    February 13, 2010 at 5:50 pm | Report abuse |
  64. Wayne

    The best of wishes and all the luck there is to those fighting for peace. I want our boys to get home safe and the sooner the better.

    February 13, 2010 at 5:49 pm | Report abuse |
  65. Rick Indiana

    Most probably left days ago to fight another day. They know they cant fight it out with the Marines and win. They Left a few behind to die for their God. See what happens in the next few days. See how many they kill or catch.

    February 13, 2010 at 5:23 pm | Report abuse |
  66. Ryan

    I wish i could be there and i Wish I was a American Solider I would kill those mother f*****s
    They are Bandits...

    February 13, 2010 at 5:22 pm | Report abuse |
  67. the american

    wars , wars , wars = hell

    Finally, my brethern,be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Above all ,taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.

    February 13, 2010 at 5:17 pm | Report abuse |
  68. Dominik

    How is that killing humans can actually prevent humans getting killed or harmed?
    @clr Imagine that there are thousands of men like you who have the same hope their sons or grandsons will kill bastards, but for them, those bastards are NATO soldiers. I dont want to offend or... admonish you, I want you to think out it reasonably and after that answer [to yourself] such question: What does it mean "to be right"?

    February 13, 2010 at 5:15 pm | Report abuse |
  69. linda in AR

    Thanks for covering this story.

    Let our troops know that they are remembered.

    May I assume that Taliban are willing to fight from houses that also contain women and children?

    February 13, 2010 at 5:10 pm | Report abuse |
  70. Eric

    being exposed wouldnt have made a diffrence a ak 47 doesnt have that kind of range and even if it did you would have to be one hell of a crack shot . god bless everyone serving in the coalition

    February 13, 2010 at 5:05 pm | Report abuse |
  71. A10 GAU

    Actually the enemy forces are busy fighting the marines in the field, so they dont seem to notice that there are snipers taking them one by one. Snipers are in another location.

    February 13, 2010 at 5:01 pm | Report abuse |
  72. clr

    I hope that was my son that took that guy out in the Bazaar!

    February 13, 2010 at 4:46 pm | Report abuse |
  73. Bob Wood

    God be with all the U.S. and Nato Troops. Good luck on the ongoing offensive attacks!
    Thank you all for what you are doing to protect the United States and our allies to stop the Taliban fighters. My prayers and thoughts are with you. Bob Wood

    February 13, 2010 at 4:03 pm | Report abuse |
  74. Helen Kelley

    My prayers are with you, Atia and all the fighters from the various countries. May you be safe and victorius.

    February 13, 2010 at 3:59 pm | Report abuse |
  75. Dave

    Cleaning up another Bush mess! Thats what its about! Get'r done!!!

    February 13, 2010 at 3:57 pm | Report abuse |
  76. Joyce

    The Marine scout sniper pictured seems to be completely exposed. Was this the team that made the shot that took out the Taliban guy with the AK47? He should be in a hide–the bad guys have snipers too. I can't tell from the picture if that is a Barrett M82 or an M40A3. What was the range? How was a cameraman able to get this picture in combat conditions?

    February 13, 2010 at 3:47 pm | Report abuse |
  77. dinomight

    God bless our troops, God bless the innocent of Marjah, And God bless our leaders with the wisdom to act appropriately.

    February 13, 2010 at 3:35 pm | Report abuse |