Another war Obama ended gets restarted.
More than a hundred US troops have been sent to Lashkar Gah to help prevent the Taliban from overrunning the capital of Afghanistan’s Helmand province, in what is thought to be the first US deployment to the embattled city since foreign troops withdrew in 2014.
Since late July, the Taliban have seized new territory across Helmand, defying a series of about 30 US airstrikes, and raising concern of an attack on the capital. The militants have also stepped up attacks in the country’s north, closing in on Kunduz, which they briefly captured last year.
“This is a big effort by the Taliban. This is probably the most serious push we’ve seen of the season,” Brig Gen Charles Cleveland, spokesman for the coalition forces in Afghanistan, told reporters on Monday.
Cleveland called the US reinforcement in Helmand a “temporary effort” to advise the Afghan police, though he declined to say how long it was expected to last, citing “security reasons”.
Update: Thoughts and prayers to his family.
(Politico) – A U.S. service member was killed in Afghanistan Tuesday by an improvised explosive device, the NATO-led coalition said in a statement.
Another U.S. service member and six Afghan soldiers were also wounded in the blast near Lashkar Gah in Afghanistan’s Helmand Province, where Afghan troops have been battling the Taliban for control. The wounded U.S. service member is in stable condition, the coalition said.
The U.S. service members were helping to train and advise Afghan troops as part of the NATO-led mission in the country, called Resolute Support. The United States also has a separate counterterrorism mission in Afghanistan. An investigation “is being conducted to determine the exact circumstances of the event,” the coalition said.
The service member who was killed was not named in the statement, as it is U.S. policy to withhold identification until the family is notified.