May 19th, 2010
08:01 AM ET

Insurgents attack Bagram Air Base

Nearly a dozen insurgents and a U.S. contractor were killed when a group launched an early morning attack on Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan on Wednesday, officials said.

Nine service members were wounded and a building received minor damages during the attack, which included rockets, small arms and grenades. Four of the slain insurgents were "intended suicide bombers," the military said.

U.S. Army spokesman Lt. Col. Clarence Count Jr. said the insurgents failed "to breach the perimeter" and were "unable to detonate their suicide vests."

"The quick defensive reaction by the Bagram security forces likely saved a lot of lives," he said.

Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid told CNN that 20 armed men wearing suicide vests stormed the base around 4 a.m. (7:30 p.m. Tuesday ET), with four them detonating at the entrances to allow the other men to move in. Mujahid said that a "major firefight" took place inside the base.

Army Specialist Christina Dion, a spokeswoman who both lives and works on the base, said personnel were ordered to bunkers when the base came under attack and were allowed to return to their huts and tents about 90 minutes later.

"We're always prepared to deal with attacks on our base," Counts said. "The response this morning was immediate."

The fighting eventually tapered off about 7:30 a.m. local time, said NATO spokesman Lt. Col Todd Breasseale.

Another Bagram spokeswoman, Maj. Virginia McCabe, could not say if flights into and out of the air base had been stopped and said that authorities are investigating how the incident started.

"Established security procedures are in place," she said, adding that personnel with "mission-essential" responsibilities were continuing to work.

Bagram is a heavily fortified base, its perimeter guarded by high fences and thick, concrete walls. Dion said she didn't believe anyone could have made their way into the main portion of the base.

Taliban fighters have lobbed rockets into the base in previous attacks.

- CNN's Adam Levine and Paula Hancocks contributed to this report.

soundoff (29 Responses)
  1. dripable

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    October 27, 2011 at 2:27 pm | Report abuse |
  2. tryecrot

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    August 28, 2011 at 8:01 am | Report abuse |
  3. Gwendolyn Thurrell

    My wife and I enjoy to pay tribute to some other niche sites on the net, though they aren't linked to with us, with backlinking to all of them.

    April 3, 2011 at 11:39 am | Report abuse |
  4. your normal marine

    After reading a bunch of these i am not surprised, you got your supports and your non supporters. You got people saying they wish death to us and you got people praying, just like any war the U.S. has been in we got supporters and non supporters. But lets just say this to the supporters thank you! and to the non supporters, you can say what you want, why? because we defend your freedoms. One of which is the freedom of speech, which you obviously support so in a way your supporting us. But take that away and i can bet you'll come crawling back wanting us to give you your rights back if ever there were a time that we didn't have them. Then even if we did establish them again, you would still go and not support us.

    March 18, 2011 at 10:46 am | Report abuse |
  5. kp

    My husband will be leaving for Bagram in just a couple weeks. He should have been there in May but due to finishing a school and moving us to Campbell, he will catch up with the men that did arrive there in May. This will be his 4th deployment in under 7 years. Not counting the numerous field time and trips to other states to prep for these deployments.
    My husband will miss his family and we will miss him. We hate these wars and that our friends have gone and died and left behind their families. He does not want to write out his last requests every time he leaves us nor does he want to write that "Last Letter" for his children to read if something were to happen. But this is our life/burden! And he will continue to protect us ALL. And go where he is told.
    It is very unsafe to report exact details on these kind of things. It puts our soldiers in more danger and worries families needlessly most of the time. Its kind of like being on a murder investigation in the police dept. You dont give out all the details so when the murderer does give out the details or suspect is questioned and knows more than he should, we know its him....being prior law enforcement, I understand this and I am happy they dont give out all the info correctly.

    I dont want to hear gory details every time I turn on the news. Just that the soldiers are ok. We dont need to hear those things. And I dont want to hear that a soldier is dead (even though I know first hand that possibility) or unnamed until next of kin notification. Because then I will jump at every knock at the door until I hear from my husband.
    As far as it being ok to "torture".... that is never ok! I hate these people as much as the next guy but We will only start stooping to their miserable levels and I never want to see my husband sink that low in his life! Religious or not, he still knows right and wrong!
    I Pray each day for all our soldiers to come home.. alive! and these wars to end.

    June 21, 2010 at 8:45 pm | Report abuse |