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Taliban fragmenting puts populace in danger

Written by U.S Army Staff Sgt. Bruce Cobbeldick Task Force Bayonet Public Affairs

Regional Command East - Combined Joint Task Force - 101Wardak Province, Afghanistan – Taliban factions in Northern Wardak are engaging in open warfare against one another as a result of apparent disagreements over command and control of the insurgent network there, according to the 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team.

This most recent incident of fighting started late last night involving anywhere from 50 to 200 fighters and reports of several wounded and killed fighters have already begun surfacing. This incident is an indicator that insurgent networks are showing signs of internal distress. 

According to U.S. Army Maj. Bart Hensler, operations officer for Task Force Rock in Wardak, Province, “Insurgents are not thinking about civilian casualties right now. The safety of the local population has been disregarded by two, opposing Taliban Forces.”

This is not the first incident of insurgent fighting in Wardak Province.

“Internal disputes among their own ranks have been escalating for the past two weeks,” said Hensler.

“The Taliban have been emplacing improvised explosive devices and conducting ambushes in portions of Wardak that are not heavily travelled by ISAF [International Security Assistance Force] personnel,” said Hensler. “They’ve shown a disregard for the local citizens, removing kids from school, using schools as bases of operation and being very intrusive to the local population.”

“The question is not how long the Taliban will continue to show disregard for the safety of local Afghans. The question is, how long will the locals stand for it? Our assessment is that the locals are starting to get fed up with this kind of behavior.”


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