DEBKAfile Exclusive Report June 18, 2010
In the absence of a Kandahar offensive, NATO allies start packing their bags and Taliban eyes the road back to Kabul.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report May 31, 2008
Some serious stock-taking in the Afghan capital and US-led NATO command has followed the Taliban's success in breaking up the Afghan army parade in Kabul Sunday, April 27. Scheduled for the 16th anniversary of the Soviet Army's defeat and expulsion from Afghanistan, it was staged to showcase the progress made by Hamid Karzai's regime and its US-led NATO allies in the war against the country's ousted Taliban rulers and their al Qaeda partners.
The bodyguards moved so swiftly to whisk their charges off the platform, that officers leading the marching soldiers found themselves saluting rows empty chairs abandoned by the president, the ambassadors and Afghan and Western commanders.
Not a single military or political figure stayed on the platform to take command of the chaos, curb the stampede and organize an effective counter-attack to let parade go on.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report June 20, 2006
"Operation Mountain Thrust," the biggest coalition offensive since the US-led invasion of Afghanistan in October 2001, has taken US-led forces deep into the remote mountains of the south. Its primary purpose is to abort the revived Taliban's drive to retake Kabul the capital, and the key city of Herat.
Operation Mountain Thrust will go on through the summer and is not limited in time.
US spokesmen noted that Sunday, June 18, was the first time coalition soldiers had ventured into the Bagham Valley north of Helmund. They landed by helicopter, surprising the Taliban, which had not expected them to reach so far into the remote mountains.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report July 23, 2002
Notwithstanding its avowed reluctance to boost its presence in Afghanistan, the United States has launched two critical military steps:
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report March 17, 2002
Ahead of the next US-led operation in Afghanistan, Army Maj.-Gen. Franklin L. "Buster" Hagenbeck informed reporters at Bagram Air Base Saturday, March 16, that the two-week Anaconda Operation around the Shah-e-Kot Valey had severely damaged the al Qaeda network, killed most of its most seasoned military leaders and destroyed so much of its ammunition that its members will have to find new ways of supporting and equipping themselves.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report March 10, 2002
Sunday, March 10, the United States unexpectedly ordered 400 US troops lifted out of the battle area south of Gardez in the Afghan Paktia province. As helicopters carried the troops back to Bagram airbase, a US spokesman announced that the major part of the offensive against the al Qaeda and Taliban stronghold was over and American troops were in the process of repositioning. But, he insisted, the fight was not over yet.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report March 8, 2002
debkafile 's military experts report the intense fighting over the past week in the mountains of Afghanistan south of Gardez, between the US 101st Airborne and 10th Mountain divisions and al-Qaeda and Taliban forces, is beginning to impinge on US preparations for its coming assault on Iraq.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report March 5, 2002
General Tommy Franks, head of the American Central Command, claims the United States has applied the lessons drawn from previous battle of the Afghan War, especially the Tora Bora engagement, in the current push against Taliban and al Qaeda strongholds south of Gardez in East Afghanistan. He promises that in this offensive, dubbed Operation Anaconda, the two forces will not get away across the border into Pakistan. They will have to surrender or be killed.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report January 26, 2002
With pledges for US$4.5 billion under his belt from the Tokyo conference of Afghanistan donor-nations, interim Afghan prime minister Hamid Karzai set out for Washington Saturday, January 26, for his first encounter with US President George W. Bush.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report January 12, 2002
Not content with brandishing nuclear, chemical and biological threats over the cities of the Western world, Osama bin Laden's al Qaeda and his partners in the Egyptian Jihad Islami plan a series of assassinations to destabilize targeted Middle East and West European countries.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report December 31, 2001
In a provisional summing up of the Afghan campaign, debkafile's military analysts find that the sixteen weeks of warfare have cost the al Qaeda terror organization the use of Afghan soil - and possibly Pakistan too - for its primary command centers, its specialized training facilities, its logistical infrastructure and its laboratories and facilities for the manufacture of explosives and substances of mass destruction.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report December 31, 2001
The Taliban intelligence chief Quri Ahmadullah came across as brash and unbowed in an interview he granted on December 28 to a reporter of the Pakistani Pashtun newspaper Shariat. He invited the reporter quite openly to the Pakistanvillage of Datha Khail, south of Tora Bora and eight miles from the Afghan border, where he has taken up residence since the Taliban was put to flight.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report December 22, 2001
The fragility of the national interim government sworn into office in Kabul Saturday, December 22, was underlined by one of the first tasks thrust on the new interim prime minister, the royalist Pashtun leader Hamid Karzai. On the day of his inauguration for a six-month period, he had to promise an inquiry to sort out the conflicting reports as to who was really hit Friday, when US aerial bombers struck a convoy east of Gardez, southwest of the Tora Bora mountains. Locals in the area say the casualties were Pashtun dignitaries and elders on their way to the inauguration ceremonies in Kabul. The Pentagon claims they were el Qaeda fighters who shot at American planes.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report December 17, 2001
The conversation between US defense secretary and the interim Afghan defense minister is described by sources in Kabul as correct and direct, but neither warm nor conclusive. According to those sources, they differed chiefly on three points. . .
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report December 15, 2001
debkafile's military sources report that over the last 48 hours, most of the al Qaeda fighters holed up in the caves of the Tora Bora mountains were able to creep past the siege thrown round the area by US-backed local Pashtun tribesmen, known as the Eastern Front, and make their way into Pakistan.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report December 5, 2001
A factor in the current battle for control of the Tora Bora cave complex north of Kandahar is the balance of power in Kabul. The official objective of the fighting in that sector is to flush out the one thousand al Qaeda fighters believed to be hiding in those caves and capture their leader Osama bin Laden. debkafile's intelligence sources believe the odds of bin Laden being present at Tora Bora are slim, a view shared by Pakistani and Indian intelligence. It is in Karzai's paramount interest to dislodge the al Qaeda from that region; failure to do so will force his own Populzai tribe to live in the shadow of hostile guerrilla attacks and undermine his standing as head of government in Kabul. The fragile house of cards assembled so painstakingly at Petersberg Hotel in Bonn would then come tumbling down.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report November 27, 2001
While US troops scour the mountains and caves for Osama bin Laden, the bulk of his al Qaeda army has also disappeared. It was found to be missing when the Northern Alliance seized control of the northern Taliban enclave of Konduz-Khanabad on Monday, November 26. Roughly 1,500 of bin Laden's men are reported still holding out outside Konduz. A similar number is unaccounted for.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report November 26, 2001
This new drive follows weeks of frustration in their hunt for the super terrorist. Concentrating on the Marouf area 80 miles south of Kandahar and the southeastern Uruzgan province between Kandahar and Kabul, which is traditional Pashtun country, the hunters have been hobbled by lack of precise intelligence. Even the high-tech sensors, in which much store is set, failed to deliver. Scanning for movement, heat, vibrations and other signals, these devices report to airplanes or satellites and are becoming increasingly important in intelligence gathering. The special GBU GBU-28 bunker-buster bombs were also a disappointment, causing only superficial damage to targeted cave entrances. The unmanned Predator planes which fired Hellfire anti-tank missiles at suspect locations fared no better.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report November 24, 2001
switching sides in mid-battle is a traditional feature of Afghan warfare. Saturday, one particularly large group of around 600 high Taliban officers with their men was granted safe passage from Konduz all the way through to the Taliban's second stronghold of Kahandar in the south with their weapons. US Special Forces officers attached to the Dostum command were clearly a party to the arrangement, which also covered members of the Pakistani contingent fighting with the Taliban, including Pakistani Pashtun tribesmen, soldiers and members of Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence service. in Afghanistan is Osama bin Laden's al Qaeda network, ahead of the Taliban.