Decapitation strikes working in Afghanistan

NY Times:

Despite deepening pessimism back home and disarray in the top American military ranks, officials insist that the buildup of soldiers in Afghanistan is beginning to show results: Commando raids over the last four months have taken scores of insurgent leaders out of action, in a secretive operation aimed partly at pressuring the Taliban to reconcile with the Afghan government.

About 130 important insurgent figures have been captured or killed in Afghanistan over the past 120 days, about the time that commanders turned their attention from the fight around Marja to a much more complex campaign around Kandahar, according to NATO military statistics. The targets have included Taliban shadow provincial governors and military commanders, as well as district-level financiers, trainers and bomb makers.

At the same time, American military officials say that the greater number of troops, along with more trained Afghan security forces, is allowing NATO forces “to confront the Taliban in places where they had not been confronted in the past,” said Brig. Gen. Josef Blotz, the NATO spokesman here. “This is tough, but we are in” the fight, he said. He predicted that given more time, there would be progress.

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The increased operational tempo by both sides has led to an increase in casualties. However, we are having success in some areas especially where special ops has been given the chance to eliminate Taliban leaders. As the post below indicates we are also have success in larger unit movements that the surge has permitted. I think the table has been set for Gen. Petraeus to step in and beat back the enemy.

David Ignatius says the strikes are having an effect on the Taliban rank and file as well as the leadership.

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