World Trade Center - before Sept. 11, 2001 Osama bin Laden (1957-2011) U.S. Pres. Ronald Reagan with Taliban, Mar. 21, 1983 Mullah Mohammed Omar of Afghanistan (1959-) Ahmad Shah Massoud of Afghanistan (1953-2001) George Walker Bush of the U.S. (1946-) U.S. Gen. Douglas E. Lute (1953-) U.S. Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal (1954-) U.S. Gen. David H. Petraeus (1952-)

TLW's Afghanistan War Historyscope

By T.L. Winslow (TLW), the Historyscoper™

© Copyright by T.L. Winslow. All Rights Reserved.

Original Pub. Date: Nov. 1, 2012. Last Update: Mar. 8, 2017.


Charles Nesbitt 'Charlie' Wilson of the U.S. (1933-2010) Gulbuddin Hekmatyar of Afghanistan (1947-) Mohammad Rabbani of Afghanistan (1956-2001) Malalai Joya of Afghanistan (1978-) Aafia Siddiqui (1972-) Hamid Karzai of Afghanistan (1957-) Barack Hussein Obama II of the U.S. (1961-) Pat Tillman of the U.S. (1977-2004) U.S. Marine Dakota L. Meyer (1988-)

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What Is A Historyscope?


Westerners are not only known as history ignoramuses, but double dumbass history ignoramuses when it comes to the Afghanistan War. Since I'm the one-and-only Historyscoper (tm), let me quickly bring you up to speed before you dive into my Master Historyscope.

Alexander the Great (-356 to -323) Conquests of Alexander the Great (-356 to -323)

Early in 329 B.C.E. blonde-blue Macedonian conqueror Alexander III the Great (-356 to -323) invades soggy Persian-held Sogdiana in C Asia SE of the super-salty (10%) Aral Sea between its filler-uppers the Oxus (Amu Darya) (S) and Jaxartes (Syr Darya) (N) Rivers, and conquers the Persians under Spitamenes (Spitamaneh) (-370 to -328) with difficulty, then invades Afghanistan and captures Gandara (Kabul) (125 mi. E of the Khyber Pass), causing the Afghanis to resist with guerrilla fighting, which Alexander meets with scorch-and-burn tactics; he then detours NE through the Hindu Kush in the spring, and captures Arachosia in Mar.; meanwhile the pagan Kafirs in Kafiristan are formed by Greeks staying in the country, becoming an unconquerable region that is later used as the setting of Rudyard Kipling's "The Man Who Would Be King". Alexander allegedly founds the town of Kandahar (Candahar) (originally Alexandria) in Afghanistan 250 mi. SW of Kabul.

Mahmud Shah Durrani of Afghanistan (1769-1829)

In 1800 with British backing, Zaman Shah is captured and blinded by his brother Mahmud Shah Durrani (1769-1829), who becomes ruler of Afghanistan next year (until 1803, then 1809-18), facing family civil war, while vizier Fateh Khan Barakzai (-1818), eldest son of Barakzay clan head Sardar Payinda (Payenda) Khan and grandson of Jamil Khan Barakzay directs state affairs. British Gen. William George Keith Elphinstone (1782-1842) William Brydon (1811-73)

In Aug. 1839 the First Anglo-Afghan War begins (ends 1842) when the British East India Co. sends an army to dethrone Dost Mohammed and replace him with ousted Shah Shoja of the rival Sadozay clan of the Durranis, taking Kandahar and Kabul and installing him as their puppet.

British Gen. William George Keith Elphinstone (1782-1842)

The worst retreat in British history and it's where, the country that has not been conquered since Alexander the Great? On Jan. 6, 1842 an uprising causes 4.5K British and 12K native auxiliaries under incompetent Scottish-born Maj. Gen. William George Keith Elphinstone (1782-1842) to decide to retreat from Kabul to Jalalabad 90 mi. away, but they are ambushed on Jan. 8 (Sat.) at the narrow (5-150 yd.) Khoord-Kabul (Khyber) Pass (home of the Afridi tribe) by the Ghilzais border tribe under Mohammad Akbar Khan, after which the remnants are wiped out on Jan. 13 near Gandamak, with one Brit, asst. surgeon William Brydon (1811-73) allowed to escape to tell the other Brits the horror story; the British keep a stiff upper lip and send more forces, force the pass in Sept. and seige Kabul; Shah Shoja is murdered, the British take Kabul, declare victory, and retreat, er, leave on Oct. 11, allowing Dost Mohammed to return to power (until 1863), ending the First Anglo-Afghan War (begun 1839) - but not teaching the Euro powers any lessons?

Abdul Rahman Khan of Afghanistan (1844-1901)

On July 22, 1880 British puppet Abdul Rahman (Abd-al-Rahman) (Abdur Rahman) Khan (1844-1901), a nephew of Shir Ali becomes amir of Afghanistan; on Sept. 1 the British win the Battle of Kandahar (Baba Wali), ending the Second Anglo-Afghan War (begun 1878), then pull out of the country when the new Liberal Gladstone cabinet begins meeting, ending the Second Anglo-Afghan War (begun 1878), and leaving Afghanistan as an independent state; the withdrawal is complete by next year; Rahman goes on to survive four civil wars and 100 revolts by increasing the size and funding of the army and centralizing control, while the British provide him with military supplies; he also builds bridges and roads to help unify his control.

Nashrullah Khan of Afghanistan (1875-1920) Amanullah Khan of Afghanistan (1892-1960)

On Feb. 20, 1919 Habibullah Khan (b. 1901) is murdered while on a hunting trip in Afghanistan, and his conservative-backed anti-British brother Nasrullah Khan (1875-1920) is proclaimed emir, but Habibullah's 3rd son Amanullah Khan (1892-1960) gets army backing and becomes emir of Afghanistan almost immediately (until 1929) (king in 1926), then gets in a war with Britain and India in an attempt to strengthen his independence while trying to modernize and Westernize, stirring resentment from the Young Afghans; in May the Third Anglo-Afghan War begins (ends 1921), with Afghan troops invading the Indian frontier but soon driven back, and an armistice signed at the end of May; on Aug. 8 the Treaty of Rawalpindi causes the British to formally recognize Afghan sovereignty while terminating their annual subsidies; this time the Brits begin turning the well-travelled Khyber Pass into a 2-lane automobile road, which is completed after the war ends. On Nov. 22, 1921 the Treaty of Kabul (Anglo-Afghan Treaty) of 1921 secures full formal independence for Afghanistan; the Third Anglo-Afghan War (begun 1919) ends, and Afghanistan is made safe for Westerners once again. On Apr. 9, 1923 Afghanistan proclaims the 1923 Afghan Constitution, giving the emir all executive powers and the right to appoint half of the legislature, which has mainly consultative functions. In 1924 Afghanistan promulgates a new penal code which incl. secular law aspects, pissing off the religious establishment, which considers it an attempt to invade their turf. In July 1928 Afghan emir Amanullah begins Turkish and Persian-inspired reforms, incl. military conscription, modernization, and secular education, funded by a new tax on men; he then really pisses the Muslims off by opposing their favorite women keep-downs of veiling and polygamy, and rubs it in by forcing all Afghans residing in or visiting Kabul to wear Western dress; in Nov. a revolt begins, and his days are numbered.

Mohammed Nadir Shah of Afghanistan (1880-1933)

On Jan. 14, 1929 Afghan emir Amanullah resigns in favor of his older brother Inayatullah Khan Seraj (1888-1946), who abdicates on Jan. 17 after a coup by Tajik bandit tribesman Habibullah Kalakani (referred to by his Pashtun enemies as Bacha-i Saqao, or "son of a water-carrier"), who declares himself emir under the name Habibullah Ghazi (1890-1929) and rules until Oct. 13, when the Musabihan brothers, led by army CIC Gen. Mohammed (Muhammad) Nadir Khan (1880-1933) occupy Kabul and seize power, declaring Nadir as emir on Oct. 16 and executing Habibullah on Nov. 3; the new emir reconciles with Amanullah's opponents, but sticks to a modernization program, promising to move more slowly and not mess with Muslim sacred cows; Amanullah flees to Rome and abdicates next year, plotting a comeback.

On Oct. 31, 1931 Afghanistan promulgates a new 1931 Afghan Constitution, establishing a bicameral legislature consisting of an elected lower house and royally-appointed upper house, with all executive powers vested in the king, who has veto power; Islam is the officially established religion.

Mohammed Zahir Shah of Afghanistan (1914-2007)  Mohammed Hashim Khan of Afghanistan (1885-1953)  Shah Mahmud Khan of Afghanistan (1890-1959)

On Nov. 8, 1933 king (since Oct. 16, 1929) Mohammed Nadir Shah (b. 1880) is assassinated in revenge for his execution of a political figure last year, and his son Mohammed (Muhammad) Zahir Shah (1914-2007) succeeds him as king of Afghanistan (until July 17, 1973), with his two paternal uncles sharing the position of PM and running the govt., beginning with Mohammad Hashim Khan (1885-1953) (Nov. 14, 1929-May 1946), who continues Nadir Shah's policies, followed in May 1946-Sept. 7, 1953 by Shah Mahmud Khan (1890-1953); meanwhile the king's cousin, exiled king Amanullah unsuccessfully plots to regain the throne from exile in Rome, eventually enlisting German aid - no Ark of the Covenant, no deal?

In 1934 Afghanistan is admitted to the League of Nations.

In 1936 the Fakir of Ipi (-1960) begins a revolt in Waziristan, keeping it up until Britain leaves in 1947 despite 40K troops being used to catch him.

Mohammed Daoud Khan Afghanistan (1909-78)

On Sept. 7, 1953 Sardar Mohammed Daoud (Daud) Khan) (1910-78), cousin of Zahir Shah becomes PM of Afghanistan (until Mar 10, 1963).

On Dec. 18, 1955 the Soviets and Afghans extend their non-aggression treaty by 10 years.

In Mar. 1956 Afghanistan implements its first Commie-style Five-Year Plan.

In 1959 the Afghan govt. issues a decree making veiling optional for women, and pretty much bans it among female state employees and female relatives of high govt. officials; meanwhile E Afghanistan is rocked by tribal revolts.

Mohammad Yusuf Khan of Afghanistan (1917-98)

On Mar. 10, 1963 King (since 1933) Zahir Shah of Afghanistan forces the resignation of PM (since 1953) Muhammad Daoud, and ends 30 years of rule by relatives in the office of PM, appointing former minister of mines Mohammad Yusuf Khan (1917-98) as new PM (until Nov. 2, 1965), then taking over personally and embarking on a liberalization program while simultaneously allying with the Soviets. On Oct. 2, 1964 a new 1964 Afghan Constitution is promulgated in Afghanistan, with king Muhammed Zahir Shah retaining extensive powers, along with a bicameral legislature which appoints a cabinet; women are granted the vote - baby let me see you smile?

Mohammad Hashem Maiwandwal of Afghanistan (1919-73)

On Jan. 1, 1965 the People's Dem. Party of Afghanistan, its first Communist org. is founded by Nur Muhammad Taraki (1913-71) and Babrak Karmal (1929-96). On Aug. 26-Sept. 24, 1965 the first parliamentary elections are held in Afghanistan, without activity by political parties - if you give them an inch they'll take a mile? On Oct. 29 after a new legislature is elected and an impasse over approval of the cabinet brings student riots, killing three, journalist and senior diplomat Mohammad Hashim (Hashem) Maiwandwal (1919-73), known for his advocacy of evolutionary Socialism becomes PM of Afghanistan (until Oct. 1967), replacing Mohammed Yousef; he quickly pacifies the students but makes their wiggle-room limits clear. In 1966 305-mi. U.S.-funded gravel-asphalt Afghanistan Eisenhower Highway between Kabul and Kandahar opens, reducing travel time to 6.5 hours; by 1996 after Soviet tanks use it, the road deteriorates so much that the trip takes 23 hours, after which the U.S. rebuilds it in 2002-3 for $250M.

Mohammed Zahir Shah of Afghanistan (1914-2007) Mohammad Daoud Khan of Afghanistan (1910-78)

In 1971 the worst drought in Afghan history begins (ends 1972), killing 100K - why should anybody care about that remote corner of the world? On July 17, 1973 after drought and famine, plus rebellions by Pashto tribes along the Pakistan border, the govt. of king (since 1933) Mohammed Zahir Shah (1914-2007) of Afghanistan is bloodlessly overthrown by the king's brother-in-law and first cousin (former PM) Mohammed Daoud Khan (1910-78) with 1K Soviet-trained troops while the king is vacationing the island of Ischia near Naples, and abdicates on Aug. 24 in the Afghan embassy in Rome, becoming Afghanistan's last shah (until ?); Khan proclaims a repub. backed by leftists, then suspends the constitution of 1964, abolishes all royal titles incl. his own, and declares himself pres. and PM, going on to crush the emerging Islamic movement; the shah returns from exile in 2002, and is given the title "Father of the Nation". On May 1, 1975 Afghanistan nationalizes its banks. On Feb. 2, 1977 the 1977 Afghan Constitution is proclaimed.

Nur Muhammad Taraki of Afghanistan (1917-79)

On Apr. 27, 1978 the Afghan Communist Rev. begins with the pro-Soviet leftist Saur Revolt (Great Saur Rev.); Pres. Mohammad Daoud Khan (b. 1910) is executed along with several fallen govt. leaders, and on Apr. 30 the Marxist Dem. Repub. of Afghanistan is proclaimed, with Nur Muhammad Taraki (1917-79) installed as pres. and PM (until Sept. 14, 1979), and Babrak Karmal as deputy PM, becoming the 1st country in South Asia to fall while under Communist rule, although it's to other Commies; on Dec. 5 Taraki and the Soviets sign a 20-year Treaty of Friendship, Cooperation and Good Neighborliness, incl. Soviet military assistance, which the Soviets later use as their pretext for invasion; meanwhile the Muslim pop. in the countryside won't go with atheistic Communism or secular govt., and stick to Sharia despite mass arrests and executions, causing mujahideen forces to gear up to topple them, and in June the Afghan Muslim fundamentalist guerrilla Mujahidin (Mujahideen) Movement is born - we're baack?

In 1978 Raytheon Missile Systems begins fielding the shoulder-fired solid-fuel Mach 2 (1.5K mph) FIM-92 Stinger infrared homing surface-to-air missile (first tested in 1975), which goes on to fame in Afghanistan (and the crash of TWA Flight 800) after debuting on May 21, 1982 in the Falklands War; after the Soviets withdraw from Afghanistan, the U.S. spends $55M trying to buy them back, obtaining about 300 of ?.

Adolph 'Spike' Dubs of the U.S. (1920-79) Hafizullah Amin of Afghanistan (1929-79) Babrak Karmal of Afghanistan (1929-96) Bactrian Gold Victor Ivanovich Sarianidi (1929-)

On Feb. 14, 1979 Adolph "Spike" Dubs (b. 1920), Russian-speaking U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan is kidnapped in Kabul by Muslim extremists, and later killed in a shootout with the police. On Sept. 14, 1979 after visiting Moscow on Mar. 20 and meeting with Leonid Brezhnev to request Soviet ground troops and 300K tons of wheat, Marxist Afghan pres. #3 (since Apr. 30, 1978) Nur Muhammad Taraki (b. 1913) after a brutal reign that killed 15K-45K is murdered on the orders of his rival PM Idi, er, Marxist Ghilzai Pahstun Hafizullah Amin (b. 1929), who becomes pres. #4 of Afghanistan (2nd Commie pres.), and announces the death of Taraki due to an "undisclosed illness"; after causing thousands of Afghans to flee to Iran and Pakistan to organize mujahideen resistance to the atheistic infidel Commie regime (the ones in Peshawar, Pakistan being described by the Islam history ignoramus Western press as freedom fighters), and trying to play both sides by claiming that the Saur Rev. is based on the principles of Islam and handing out Qurans and invoking Allah's name in speeches, pissing the Muslims off more, and trying to ally with Pakistan and the U.S. and/or China and Pashtunize the country, pissing the Soviets off, the KGB assassinates Amin on Dec. 27, issuing disinfo. that he was a CIA agent. On Dec. 24, 1979 after fearing that it is in danger of being toppled by Islamic mujahideen forces, 85K Soviet troops of the 40th Army invade and seize control of Afghanistan; on Dec. 27 Pres. Hafizullah Amin is assassinated by the KGB, and Babrak Karmal (1929-96) becomes puppet pres. #5 of Afghanistan (3rd Commie) (until Nov. 24, 1986), beginning the Soviet-Afghan War (ends Feb. 15, 1989), in which 13K-15K Soviet soldiers and 1M Afghans are killed, 35,478 Soviet solders are wounded and 311 go MIA, and 3M civilian refugees flee to Pakistan and Iran; by 1985 the Soviets have 120K troops in Afghanistan after 8K deaths and 25K casualties, while the CIA believes they needed 500K troops to win; fear of Communism trumping fear of resurgent Islam, the U.S. backs the mujahideen, giving them $600M a year, along with matching funds from the Persian Gulf states incl. Saudi Arabia, and more support from China and the U.K.; the U.S. gives them hundreds of FIM-92 Stinger anti-aircraft missiles in 1985-6; to keep them from the Soviets, treasures from the Afghan Nat. Museum in Kabul are locked in a basement vault on the grounds of the pres. palace, with the secret "key holders" guarding the key until 2003, incl. the 1st cent. C.E. Bactrian Gold, discovered in a burial ground in the Karakum Desert in 1978 by Soviet archeologist Viktor Ivanovich Sarianidi (1929-).

Charles Nesbitt 'Charlie' Wilson of the U.S. (1933-2010) Gulbuddin Hekmatyar of Afghanistan (1947-)

On Jan. 2, 1980 Pres. Carter asks the Senate to delay ratification of the arms treaty in response to the Soviet action in Afghanistan. On Jan. 4 in response to the 1979 Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, Pres. Carter announces a U.S. boycott of the Moscow Olympics and a partial (not covered by the 1975 agreement) 17M metric ton embargo of U.S. grain sales to the Soviet Union, which has its 2nd straight bad harvest, causing Argentina to take up the slack; later in Jan. Coca-Cola announces that it will substitute high-fructose corn syrup for half the sucrose because of Carter's embargo, which causes lower U.S. corn prices, helping them offset higher sugar prices which reach 24 cents per lb. by June, up 60% from 1979. On Jan. 13 the U.S. offers Pakistan a 2-year aid plan to counter the Soviet threat in Afghanistan; on Jan. 14 the U.N. votes 104-18 to deplore the Soviet acts in Afghanistan. On Feb. 22 Afghanistan declares martial law. On June 22 the Soviet Union announces a partial withdrawal of forces from Afghanistan. On July 2 in response to the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, Pres. Carter signs Proclamation 4771, requring 18-to-25-y.-o. males to register for the military draft. On July 27 after watching a CBS-TV special with Dan Rather in a stripper-filled hot tub at Caesar's Palace in Las Vegas, and hearing that Soviet troops have been booby-trapping children's toys with explosives in Afghanistan (and worrying about the Soviet Union gaining access to the Persian Gulf), well-positioned U.S. rep. (D-Tex.) (1973-97) Charles Nesbitt "Charlie" Wilson (1933-2010), member of the defense appropriations subcommittee (a womanizing boozer AKA Good Time Charlie, whose all-female staff is called Charlie's Angels) gets religion, visits refugee camps in Pakistan in fall 1982, survives a federal investigation into cocaine drug use in summer 1983, and with the help of Houston, Tex. lobbyist Joanne Herring and Dem. rep. Clarence "Doc" Long begins pumping up funding for the CIA operation in Afghanistan, starting with $40M in 1983, fighting CIA reluctance to get the U.S. into a war with the Soviets, and going on to funnel $1B into the mujahideen war against the Soviets, getting Pres. Reagan in spring 1986 to overrule the Joint Chiefs of Staff and release 35-lb. shoulder-mounted heat-seeking Raytheon FIM-92 Stinger missiles to shoot down Soviet Mi-24 Hind helis to mujahideen leader Gulbuddin Hekmatyar (1947-), 1977 founder of the Hezb-e-Islami Gulbuddin (HIG), and issuing the soundbyte "The U.S. had nothing whatsoever to do with these people's decision to fight... but we'll be damned by history if we let them fight with stones"; on Sept. 26, 1986 the first three Hinds are shot down, and the Stingers turn the tide, causing the helis to have to raise their ceiling, and after 100+ helis are shot down the Soviets finally pull out on Feb. 15, 1989 after 10 years; too bad, the U.S. leaves the devastated Afghanis unsupported with economic or military aid, causing the Muslim fundamentalists to take over, later using the training and weapons against the U.S., causing Charlie to issue the soundbyte "These things happened and they were glorious, but we fucked up the endgame"; Hekmatyar goes on to become PM of Afghanistan in 1993-4 and 1996, then after aiding al-Qaida he is designated an internat. terrorist on Feb. 19, 2003 by the U.S. State Dept. On Aug. 22, 1981 five Afghan resistance groups form the Mujahideen Alliance, which by 1985 is up to seven groups, called the Islamic Unity of Afghanistan (Seven Party) (Peshawar Seven) Mujahidin (Mujahideen) Alliance, dedicated to kicking the Soviets out of Afghanistan and even seeking representation in the U.N. On Mar. 8, 1982 the U.S. accuses the Soviets of killing 3K Afghans with poison gas - twenty years later they might have praised them for it? On Aug. 4 Taliban-aligned Afghanis on orders of Pakistan and financed by the U.S. attack the Soviet embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan, wounding two soldiers and capturing two more. On Oct. 22 Afghan jihadists fire U.S.-supplied rockets into the Soviet embassy in Kabul, becoming the first major attack on it since the Dec. 1979 invasion. On Nov. 3 the Salang Tunnel Fire in C Afghanistan is caused by a Soviet two fuel convoys colliding, killing up to 2.7K, which is covered-up by the Soviets. On Nov. 4-6 Afghan fighters blow up the Soviet oil pipeline near Bagram Air Base N of Kabul, and another at Dash-e-Qalagi in N Samangan Province bordering the Soviet Union.

U.S. Pres. Ronald Reagan with Taliban, Mar. 21, 1983

On Mar. 21, 1983 U.S. Pres. Ronald Reagan meets with leaders of the Taliban, praising them as "valiant and courageous Afghan freedom fighters", and uttering the Islam history ignoramus soundbyte that they are the "moral equivalent of America's Founding Fathers" - does he know who's rolling over in Washington's tomb?

Osama bin Laden (1957-2011) Abdullah Yusuf Azzam (1941-89)

In 1984 Maktab al-Khidamat, AKA the Afghan Services Bureau is founded by Osama bin Laden (1957-2011) and his mentor Abdullah Yusuf Azzam (1941-89) (who persuaded him to come to Afghanistan) to recruit and fund foreign mujahidin for the fight against the Soviets in Afghanistan, with offices in the Al Kifah Refugee Center in Brooklyn N.Y. and the Islamic Center of Tucson, Ariz.; after Azzam breaks with bin Laden over use of assets for a global jihad, he is assassinated on Nov. 24, 1989, and bin Laden absorbs the org. into al-Qaida (founded 1988).

Mohammed Najibullah of Afghanistan (1947-96)

On May 4, 1986 Afghan PM (since 1979) Babrak Karmal is removed by the Soviets, and replaced by Communist Party secy.-gen. Najib Ahmadzai, AKA Mohammed (Muhammad) Najibullah (1947-96), who becomes the 4th and last Commie pres. of Afghanistan next Sept. 30 (until Apr. 16, 1992). On Nov. 13 a Soviet Politburo meeting on Afghanistan features Mikhail Gorbachev uttering the soundbyte: "We have been fighting in Afghanistan for six years already. If the approach is not changed, we will continue to fight for another 20-30 years... Are we going to fight endlessly as a testimony that our troops are not able to deal with the situation? We need to finish this process as soon as possible."

Meena Keshwar Kamal of Afghanistan (1957-1983)

On Feb. 4, 1987 Afghan women's rights activist Meena Keshwar Kamal (b. 1956) (founder of the Rev. Assoc. of the Women of Afghanistan) is assassinated in Quetta, Pakistan by Afghan KGB (KHAD) agents.

On Jan. 6, 1988 Soviet foreign minister Eduard Shevardnadze is quoted by the Afghan news agency as saying that the Kremlin wants to pull an estimated 115K soldiers from Afghanistan in the coming year starting in May. On Apr. 14 the Geneva Accords, a U.N.-mediated agreement is signed by Pakistan and Afghanistan, with the U.S. and Soviet Union as guarantors, pledging that Afghanistan will become a nonaligned country, and providing for the withdrawal of all Soviet troops from Afghanistan by Feb. 15, 1989; the mujahadin rebels reject the pact and continue fighting with the U.S.-backed guerrillas. On May 15 the Soviet Union begins withdrawing its troops from Afghanistan 8.5 years after Soviet forces had come looking to kick mujahidin butt (ends Feb. 15); on May 18 a cheering crowd in the Soviet town of Termez greets the first returning Soviet soldiers. In 1988 the pesky infidel Soviets out of the way in Afghanistan with infidel U.S. help, multimillionaire Saudi financer and Sunni Wahhabi Muslim anti-Crusader freedom fighter Osama (Usama) (Arab. "lion") bin Laden (1957-2011) founds Al-Qaida (Al-Qaeda) (Arab. "the [Data] Base") to support Muslim terrorist activity worldwide; the name originally refers to a center for processing Arab volunteers to fight against the Soviets in Afghanistan?

Pakistan Gen. Hamid Gul (1936-)

On Jan. 26, 1989 after Pakistani gen. Hamid Gul (1936-) diverts mujahideen fighting the Soviet-Afghan War to start an uprising in East Pakistan and Jammu and Kashmir in N India, the Indian flag is raised in Kashmir, causing India to send paramilitary troops; Gul goes on to become the "Father of the Taliban". On Jan. 30 the U.S. embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan closes. On Feb. 15 the Soviet Union announces the pullout of the last of its troops from Afghanistan, and begins unilateral withdrawal of troops from Eastern Europe. In May Afghanistan guerrillas elect Sibghatullah Mojadidi as head of their govt.-in-exile.

On Oct. 4, 1990 Tarin Kot, capital of Uruzgan Province in Afghanistan falls to Muslim guerrillas after they shoot down 95 Afghan soldiers who had surrendered; two weeks later another 125 soldiers are murdered while negotiating the surrender of Qalat, capital of neighboring Zabul Province.

Hafiz Muhammad Saeed (1950-)

In 1990 the militant Islamist org. Lashkar-e-Taiba (Army of the Pure or Righteous) is founded in Afghanistan by Pakistani univ. prof. Hafiz Muhammad Saeed (1950-) and Zafar Iqbal (1955-), with HQ in Muridke (near Lahore), Pakistan; it operates under cover of the Jama'at-ud-Da'wah (Jamaat-ud-Dawa) charitable org., which the U.N. Security Council declares a terrorist front group on Dec. 11, 2008.

Burhanuddin Rabbani of Afghanistan (1940-2011)

In Apr. 1991 after offering the services of his Afghan mujahadeen fighters to Saudi regent Abdullah against Sadam Hussein, only to have him accept 500K U.S. troops instead, Osama bin Laden calls the Saudi govt. traitors and flees, moving to Pakistan, then to Sudan (until 1996). On Apr. 15, 1992 the Mujahidin Alliance in Afghanistan deposes Muhammad Najibullah, who resigns on Apr. 16; on Apr. 22-24 Kabul is taken without resistance, and an interim govt. takes power until the June 28 election of Burhanuddin Rabbani (1940-2011) as pres. by the people, er, a supreme council of rebel leaders (until Sept. 27, 1996); on Dec. 30 an electoral assembly confirms him, but opponents charge the election with being rigged.

Mullah Mohammed Omar of Afghanistan (1959-)

In Jan. 1994 the Sunni Muslim Taliban ("student") movement, founded by 1-eyed Mullah Mohammed Omar (1959-) in the S Afghanistan province of Kandahar from members of the 40M-member Pashtun tribal group rapidly advances against Rabbani's govt., and launches bombing raids in Kabul. On Nov. 8 the U.N. secy.-gen. presents a Report on Human Rights in Afghanistan, detailing the horrible retro Islamic Sharia system of the Taliban.

Ahmad Shah Ahmadzai of Afghanistan (1944-)

On Feb. 22, 1995 Afghan pres. Rabbani refuses to relinquish power to an interim council as proposed by the U.N.; deputy PM (former mujahideen against the Soviets) (former engineering student at Colo. State U.) Ahmad Shah Ahmadzai (1944-) becomes acting PM (until June 26, 1996), then flees Afghanistan in Sept. 1996 as the Taliban is about to capture Kabul, returning after the fall of the Taliban in 2001, and brokering a meeting between the Taliban and U.S. Brig. Gen. Edward M. Reeder in summer 2009. where they agree to cut al-Qaida loose but won't accept U.S. access to three airbases. In Mar. the Trans-Afghanistan Pipeline (TAPI), funded by the Asian Development Bank to pipe natural gas from the Caspian Sea through Turkmenistan, S Afghanistan, and Pakistan into India is launched; too bad, the Taliban nixes it in Aug. 2001, pissing off the U.S., and after they invade and oust them, the new Afghan govt. reinstates the project. On Sept. 27 Taliban forces in Afghanistan capture Hierat.

Mohammad Rabbani of Afghanistan (1956-2001) Ahmad Shah Massoud of Afghanistan (1953-2001) Ustad Abdul Rab Rasul Sayyaf of Afghanistan (1946-)

In May 1996 Sudan under U.S. and Saudi pressure expels Osama bin Laden, who after an invitation from Northern Alliance leader Utad Abdul Rab Rasul Sayyaf (1946-) moves back to Afghanistan and sets up shop with his Al-Qaida (Al-Qaeda) al-Jihad ("the base or foundation of holy war") terrorist org., which is organized into cells worldwide. On Sept. 25-26, 1996 Kabul, Afghanistan is captured by the ultra-medieval throwback Pakistan-backed Taliban after a 2-day siege which kills hundreds; the warlords flee, incl. Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, who later aids al-Qaida in fighting the U.S.-backed regime of Hamid Karzai, getting designated an internat. terrorist by the U.S. State Dept. on Feb. 19, 2003, and Ahmad Shah Massoud (1953-2011), whose Sunni Sufi views don't jive with the Taliban, making him join the resistance; meanwhile many of Hekmatyar's Hezb-e-Islami Gulbuddin warlords switch to the Taliban; on Sept. 26 Taliban founder Mohammad Rabbani (1956-2001) (no relation) becomes the new Afghan PM (until 2001); on Sept. 27 the Taliban force Pres. Burhanuddin Rabbani out of power, and begin reenacting medieval Islamic Sharia law incl. stoning, hand severing, and the suppression of women, who are ordered out of schools and workplaces and told to stay home; former Soviet-backed pres. Muhammad Najibullah is hanged in the soccer stadium along with his brother; men are told not to shave or trim their beards; meanwhile Afghanistan comes to the brink of starvation.

Furthermore I hope my meaning won't be lost or misconstrued? On Feb. 23, 1998 at a press conference in Khost, Afghanistan, fundamentalist (fanatic) Islam's new Robin Hood Osama bin Laden (1957-2011) announces the formation of the World Islamic Front for the Jihad Against Jews and Crusaders, which he says has a duty to "kill Americans and their allies", with a single-minded purpose of driving the U.S. out of the Middle East and destroying Israel; later the real plan to Islamize the entire Earth by violence leaks out?; "In compliance with Allah's order, we issue the following fatwa to all Muslims: The ruling to kill the Americans and their allies, civilians and military, is an individual duty for every Muslim who can, in any country in which it is possible. We with Allah's help call on every Muslim who believes in Allah and wishes to be rewarded, to comply with Allah's order to kill the Americans and plunder their money wherever and whenever they find it. Unless you go forth, Allah will punish you with a grievous penalty, and put others in your place"; Mullah Muhammad Omar puts bin Laden into strict isolation to keep him from carrying out plots against the U.S., and tries to get a ruling by the Afghan supreme court that he is guilty of the U.S. embassy bombings on Aug. 7 in order to turn him over to the govt. of Saudi Arabia?; by 2001 up to 75% of all Muslims sympathize with the idea of supporting "jihad"; meanwhile, the stupid, er, wise Euro and U.S. authorities accept mobs of Islamic immigrants, thinking they can integrate them into their tolerant societies, but only creating a fifth column? - stay tuned for terror? On Apr. 17 the Taliban and other Islamists waging civil war in Afghanistan agree to a ceasefire; too bad, the Taliban begins slaughtering thousands of Afghan Shiites (until 2002). In May ABC News reporter John Miller (1958-) conducts an interview with Osama bin Laden in Afghanistan. That's Ninety-Eight for Nairobi, Two Thousand One for Twin Tower Fun? On Aug. 7 the 1998 U.S. Embassy Bombings see simultaneous al-Qaida terrorist attacks on the U.S. embassies in Nairobi, Kenya, and Dar es Salaam, Tanzania; the Nairobi blast kills 224, incl. 12 Americans, and injures 5K; the Dar es Salaam blast kills 11 Africans, and injures 72; suspicions lead to Osama bin Laden, who, on Oct. 7 is claimed by the London-based Arabic newspaper al-Hayat to have aquired nuclear weapons from Soviet Central Asian countries; on Nov. 4 a multi-million-dollar reward, the first of many is placed on his head by the U.S.; on Aug. 20 the U.S. retailiates by sending cruise missiles to pound terrorist camps in Sudan and Afghanistan (SE of Kabul), hoping to score payback and kill Osama bin Laden and his al-Qaida associates, but he is tipped-off by Pakistani intelligence and escapes three hours before the attack; on Aug. 20 U.S. cruise missiles destroy the El Shifa Pharmaceutical Industries factory in Khartoum, Sudan, and later U.S. officials lamely claim it was involved in the manufacture of chemical weapons; on Aug. 22 concrete barriers are positioned around the Washington Monument, just in case; four low-level bin Laden followers (a Lebanese, a Saudi, a Jordanian and a Tanzanian) are apprehended in Africa and extradited to the U.S., where in 2001 they are all convicted in a New York federal court for their roles in the bombings and sentenced to life; Egyptian-born Ali Mohammed al-Amriki (Arab. "the American") (1952-), a Muslim double agent mole who worked for the CIA and U.S. special forces and trained al-Qaida fighters incl. El Sayyid Nosair (murderer of Rabbi Kahane) is charged with the bombings, and pleads guilty in Oct. 2000; Tanzanian-born Ahmed Khalfan Ghailani (1974-) is captured in 2004 and held in Guantanamo Bay, and on Nov. 17, 2010 acquitted of 284 of 285 charges, and convicted only of conspiracy to destroy U.S. property, receiving a 20-year sentence, dashing Obama admin. plans to prosecute Islamic terrorists in civil rather than military courts; his lengthy confession was suppressed? On Aug. 8 the Taliban wins a V in Mazar-i Sharif in N Afghanistan, followed on Aug. 11 by Taloqan, the last major city to fall to them, after which they take more territory along the Uzbekistan border on Aug. 12, giving them control of over 90% of Afghanistan; the other 10% in the N along the Tajikistan border is held by the Northern Alliance (United Islamic Front for the Salvation of Afghanistan), headed by Ahmad (Ahmed) Shah Massoud (1953-2001), AKA "the Lion of Panjshir"; on Aug. 8 nine Iranian diplomats are killed in a consulate in Mazar-i-Sharif, causing Iran on Sept. 10 to announce that it holds the Taliban responsible. On Sept. 10 Iran sends 200K troops to the Afghan border. On Sept. 24 Saudi Arabia recalls its envoy from Kabul and expel's Afghanistan's chief ambassador from Riyadh, accusing that country of harboring arch-enemy Osama bin Laden.

Madeleine Korbel Albright of the U.S. (1937-)

On Feb. 10, 1999 after decided to prevent him from contacting foreigners, the Taliban sends a group of 10 gunmen to replace the bodyguards of Osama bin Laden, causing a gunfight; on Feb. 13 they take control of his compound near Kandahar, Afghanistan and take away his satellite phone. On Mar. 14, 1999 secret U.N. talks in Turkmenistan end in an accord that "in principle" Afghanistan will soon be ruled by a coalition govt.; this doesn't stop the Taliban, which continues through the year, beginning a major offensive on July 28 to attempt to gain control of the remaining 10% of the well-bearded country. On Nov. 14 the U.S. and U.N. tighten economic sanctions on Afghanistan for refusing to turn over Osama bin Laden, freezing foreign assets, which sparks anti-U.N. riots across Afghanistan. On Dec. 24 al-Qaida-connected Pakistani Muslim terrorists hijack Indian Airlines Flight 814 (Airbus A300) en route from Kathmandu to Delhi with 189 aboard, forcing it to land in Afghanistan, then using the Taliban to negotiate the release of terrorists Maulana Masood Azhar (1968-), British-born Pakistani militant (with high Pakistani govt. connections) Ahmed Omar Saeed Sheikh (1973-), and Mushtaq Ahmed Zargar (1967-), who all go on to be harbored by the Taliban and Pakistan govt. and engage in terrorism against the U.S. despite U.S. secy. of state (1997-2001) Madeleine Korbel Albright (1937-) telling Congress that she is "concerned about the fact that groups... involved in the recent hijacking... operate in Pakistan" and "We have been concerned about Pakistan's support for the Taliban, who are in turn closely linked to Osama bin Laden"; thanks to lame U.S. Pres. Bill Clinton and his soft-on-Muslim-terrorists policy, Ahzar, founder of the Pakistani terrorist group Jaish-e-Muhammad with the goal of separating Kashmir from India later helps kidnap and murder U.S. journalist Daniel Pearl in 2002; Sheikh became Osama bin Laden's "special son", and Oct. 6, 2001 it is revealed that he wired $100K from the UAE to 9/11 terrorist Mohamed Atta, then on Nov. 28, 2008 tries to start a war between Pakistan and India by calling billionaire Pakistan pres. (2008-) Asif Ali Zardari (1955-) from prison and pretending to be Indian foreign minister Pranab Mukherjee; in Dec. 1989 Zargar founded the Pakistani Islamic terrorist group Al Umar Mujahideen, a subgroup of Lashkar-e-Omar, which also helps with the Daniel Pearl murder.

Gary Berntsen of the U.S. U.S. Gen. Tommy Ray Franks (1945-)

In Mar. 2000 CIA agent (1982-2005) Gary Berntsen is sent to Afghanistan to capture a senior al-Qaida leader; too bad, the mission is called off, pissing off Northern Alliance leader Ahmad Shah Massoud, who says that the U.S. is "not serious"; after 9/11 he returns with a new mission to eliminate al-Qaida completely, only to be backstabbed by the Pakistan ISI. On July 6 U.S. gen. Tommy Ray Franks (1945-) succeeds Gen. Anthony Zinny as cmdr. of the U.S. Central Command (until July 7, 2003), overseeing a 25-country region incl. the Middle East, and going on to lead the attack on the Taliban in Afghanistan the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq. On Sept. 6 the Taliban captures the Northern Alliance HQ of Taloqan, Afghanistan, and on Sept. 7 requests the U.N. to recognize it as the official Afghan govt.; the U.N. Security Council responds on Dec. 19 by voting to tighten diplomatic sanctions and impose an arms embargo, repeating its demands for extradition of Osama bin Laden - french me a fry, bring me a nut, kashmir me, I won't comply?

Buddha of Bamyan Ahmad Shah Massoud of Afghanistan (1953-2011) Moez Garsalloui (1967-) and Malika El Aroud (1959-)

On Jan. 8, 2001 the Taliban orders the death penalty for anyone who converts from Islam to a different religion in Afghanistan; the same day they massacre 300 unarmed Shiite Hazaras in Yakaolang - pissing the Shiite out of Iran? On Jan. 19 U.N. sanctions against Afghanistan begin following a 30-day deadline for the handover of Osama bin Laden by the Taliban; meanwhile Afghanistan has its worst drought in 30 years. On Jan. 29 110 Afghan refugees freeze to death in camps near the W city of Herat. On Mar. 21 the Taliban blows up the two 1,500-y.-o. Buddhas of Bamyan, one 125 ft. (world's tallest) and the other 115 ft. in Bamiyan, Afghanistan, 143 mi. NW of Kabul (on the ancient Silk Road); the region was once a center of Buddhism but now has 400K Persian-speaking education-loving mostly Shiite Hazaras, which the Taliban has been persecuting since 1996. In June Taliban leader Mullah Omar gives an interview to journalist Arnaud de Borchgrave in which he says that Osama bin Laden had given a written pledge to him not to use his base in Afghanistan to launch any attacks against the U.S.; the 9/11 attack starts a split? On Sept. 9 Afghan anti-Taliban Northern Alliance Group leader ("the Lion of Panjshir") Ahmad Shah Massoud (b. 1953) is assassinated in Takhar Province by two Tunisian-born Belgian al-Qaida members incl. Abdessatar Dahmane (Dahmane Abd al-Sattar) (-2011), who pose as journalists, and are promptly killed; Dahmane's Moroccan-born Belgian wife Malika El Aroud (1959-) marries Tunisian-born al-Qaida member Moez Garsalloui (1967-); in June 2007 they are convicted in Switzerland of running a number of al-Qaida propaganda Web sites.

World Trade Center - before Sept. 11, 2001 World Trade Center Sept. 11, 2001 World Trade Center Sept. 11, 2001 World Trade Center Sept. 11, 2001 World Trade Center Sept. 11, 2001 The Pentagon, Sept. 11, 2001 Mohamed Atta (1968-2001) Waleed Mohammed al-Shehri (1978-2001) Wail al-Shehri (1973-2001) Abdulaziz al-Omari (1979-2001) Satam al-Suqami (1976-2001) Marwan al-Shehhi (1978-2001) Fayez Banihammad (1977-2001) Mohand al-Shehri (1979-2001) Hamza al-Ghamdi (1980-2001) Ahmed al-Ghamdi (1979-2001) Hani Hanjour (1972-2001) Khalid al-Mihdhar (1975-2001) Majed Moqed (1977-20010 Nawaf al-Hazmi (1976-2001) Salem al-Hazmi (1981-2001) Ziad Jarrah (1975-2001) Ahmed Ibraham al-Haznawi (1980-2001) Ahmed al-Nami (1977-2001) Saeed al-Ghamdi (1979-2001) George W. Bush (1946-) and Colin Powell (1937-) of the U.S. Osama bin Laden (1957-2011) 9/11 Terrorists Pres. Bush reading from 'The Pet Goat' on 9/11 Andy Card of the U.S. (1947) Todd Morgan Beamer (1968-2001) Rick Rescoria (1939-2001) Sergio G. Villanueva (-2001) T.L. Winslow (TLW) (1953-)

On Sept. 11, 2001 (Tues.) the 9/11 Attacks see the New York City skyline changed after 19 lowdown cowardly stinking crazed Satan-controlled Muslim raghead jihad terrorist scumbags (incl. 15 Saudis) hijack four U.S. commercial airliners and take over the unprotected cabins, using flying lessons given them in the U.S. to steer and crash into the twin towers of the World Trade Center (WTC) (dedicated in Apr. 1973), and also the Pentagon; Am. Airlines Flight 11 (Boeing 767) from Boston to Los Angeles hits the North Tower at 8:46:26 a.m. with a direct hit that disables all the elevators; actor Tony Perkins' wife Berinthia "Berry" Berenson Perkins (b. 1948) is on Flight 11; United Airlines Flight 175 (Boeing 767) from Boston to Los Angeles hits the South Tower at 9:02:54 a.m. at an angle, permitting people to escape; Am. Airlines Flight 77 from Washington, D.C. to Los Angeles hits the SW face of the Pentagon at 9:43 a.m. on the 60th anniv. of its groundbreaking; it was really a U.S.-launched missile, and was covered-up?; Pres. Bush first informs the nation of "an apparent terrorist attack on our country" at 9:30 from the school; at 9:45 a.m. the FAA grounds all civilian domestic and internat. flights to/from the U.S., although an El Al (Boeing 747) flight is allowed to take from JFK Airport to Tel Aviv at 4:11 p.m.; commercial flights resume on Sept. 13, followed by private flights on Sept. 14; on Sept. 20 a flight containing Bin Laden family members is allowed to leave the U.S., carrying four Americans; on Sept. 11 NBC-TV commentator Tom Brokaw answers a speculation by Matt Laurer with "This is war. This is a declaration and execution of an attack on the United States", later chanting "War! War!"; "When I saw the second airplane hit, I knew jihad has come to America" (Nonie Darwish); the South Tower implodes at 9:59:04 a.m., followed by the North Tower at 10:28:31 a.m., after the jet fuel ignites tons of paper, which causes internal temps as high as 2K F; Pres. Bush is informed of the South Tower crash at 9:07 a.m. by White House chief of staff Andrew Hill "Andy" Card Jr. (1947-) while visiting with 2nd grade (mainly black) students at Emma E. Booker Elementary School in Sarasota, Fla., and turns red, but stays with the kids, reading aloud from the children's story The Pet Goat (by Siegfried Engelmann and Elaine C. Bruner) with them; United Air Lines Flight 93 from Newark, N.J. to San Francisco carrying 37 passengers and 7 crew crashes at 10:10 a.m. in Somerset County, Penn. (80 mi. SE of Pittsburgh and 150 mi. NW of Washington, D.C.) as the 33 all-American passengers fight back against the four ragheads instead of cowering like sheep, and kick surprised terrorist butt, although too late to prevent the crash; Flight 93 passenger Todd Morgan Beamer (b. 1968) becomes a U.S. hero when he quarterbacks the makeshift anti-raghead team with the all-American words "Let's roll!", which are heard on his cellphone; his sad-proud wife Lisa later founds the charity Heroic Choices; British-born former U.S. Army officer Cyril Richard "Rick" Rescoria (b. 1939), vice-pres. of security at Morgan Stanley (scheduled for retirement at year's end) dies after helping 2.7K coworkers to safety; after rushing in to help not knowing about the impending collapse; 343 firefighters die in the Twin Towers, and firefighter (Argentine native) Sergio G. Villanueva becomes a hero; two Port Authority of N.Y. and N.J. police officers survive the towers' collapse and are rescued from the rubble after 22 hours; 300K are evacuated by boat in lower Manhattan after hundreds of craft answer a Coast Guard call for help "From All Available Boats" and converge on the West Side; 2,976 are killed in the 9/11 attacks, incl. 2,605 in New York City, 125 at the Pentagon (incl. 55 military personnel), and 246 on the four planes, with 24 listed as missing, becoming the most Americans lost on U.S. soil since the Sept. 17, 1862 Battle of Antietam, and the greatest single-day civilian loss of life in the U.S. since the May 31, 1889 Johnstown Penn. Flood; many Palestinians openly celebrate the attack on the Great Satan U.S.; Iraqi pres. Saddam Hussein utters the soundbyte "The American cowboys are reaping the fruit of their crimes against humanity"; the govts. of Cuba, Iran, Libya and North Korea join a worldwide chorus denouncing the attacks; Arab leaders denouncing the attacks incl. King Hussein of Jordan, Egyptian pres. Hosni Mubarak, and Lebanese PM Rafik Hariri; some Muslims around the world express sympathy for the 9/11 victims, incl. a moment of silence at a World Cup match between Bahrain and Iranon Sept. 14, and a candlelight vigil by Palestinians in Jerusalem on Sept. 15 along with another in Tehran; on Sept. 14 Ireland holds a nat. day of mourning, the only country other than the U.S. and Israel to do so; the Taliban in Afghanistan condemns the attacks but denies that Osama bin Laden is behind them; bin Laden also denies involvement, claiming that there is a govt. within the govt. of the U.S. that wants to turn the 21st cent. into a cent. of conflict between Islam and Christianity, suggesting U.S. Jews and intel agencies; the economic repercussions cost the U.S. economy $1T (same as Bush's June 7 tax cut); 40K workers work at "The Pile" at Ground Zero for the next 8 mo., removing 1M tons of rubble, and 69% of them later develop permanent lung problems known as "WTC Cough". On Sept. 11 after watching the 9/11 news on TV, T.L. Winslow (TLW) (1953-) of Denver, Colo. shelves his numerous other careers as computer programmer, engineer, fiction writer et al., and begins full-time work on T.L. Winslow's Great Track of Time, placing it on the World Wide Web on his Web site www.tlwinslow.com, where it first becomes accessible on Google on Oct. 29, until it receives over 100K hits and takes too much time and expense, pulling the plug in May 2003 and continuing to work on it for pub. by traditional channels. In Nov. Pres. Bush signs an executive order making non-citizens serving in the U.S. military on active duty eligible for citizenship; on Nov. 13 he signs another executive order giving the U.S. intel community extensive orders to go after terrorists - jump the border, go to Iraq, lose a leg, get your papers? In 2001 Iraqi nutcase Saddam Hussein's directorate of gen. security reports to him that the TV series "Pokemon" is an Israeli plot to contaminate the minds of Iraqi youths, and that the title is Hebrew for "I'm Jewish".

On Sept. 16, 2001 Osama bin Laden denies involvement in the 9/11 attacks, saying "I would like to assure the world that I did not plan the recent attacks, which seems to have been planned by people for personal reasons"; on Sept. 28 he adds "I have already said that I am not involved in the September 11 attacks in the United States. As a Muslim, I try my best to avoid telling a lie. I had no knowledge of these attacks, nor do I consider the killing of innocent women, children and other human beings as an appreciable act. Islam strictly forbids causing harm to innocent women, children and other people. Such a practice is forbidden even in the course of battle... The United States should try to trace the perpetrators of these attacks within itself, the people who are a part of the U.S. system but are dissenting against it, or those who are working for some other system, persons who want to make the present century a century of conflict between Islam and Christianity so that their own civilization, nation, country, or ideology can survive. They may be anyone, from Russia to Israel and from India to Serbia. In the U.S. itself, there are dozens of well-organized and well-equipped groups capable of causing large-scale destruction. Then you cannot forget the American Jews, who have been annoyed with President Bush ever since the Florida elections and who want to avenge him... Then there are intelligence agencies in the U.S., which require billions of dollars worth of funds from Congress and the government every year... They needed an enemy... Is it not that there exists a government within the government in the United Sates? That secret government must be asked who carried out the attacks"; on Dec. 26 he adds that the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan is "a vicious campaign based on mere suspicion". The Bush Empire Strikes Back? On Oct. 7, 2001 (anniv. of the 1777 2nd Battle of Saratoga, the 1780 Battle of King's Mountain, and the 1918 Relief of the Lost Battalion) after the Taliban refuses to hand over Osama bin Laden, citing lack of evidence despite admitting to harboring a fugitive from justice, the first U.S. military counterattack against Osama bin Laden begins, with a massive daily bombing campaign against Taliban and al-Qaida terrorist camps in Afghanistan, aided by the CIA's elite Special Activities Div. and British forces, overthrowing Taliban control of Afghanistan with minimal U.S. force loss and no conventional military forces; the U.S. communicates with anti-Taliban Iran before and after the invasion for the 1st time since the 1985-6 Iran-Contra Affair; on Oct. 14 the Taliban offers to discuss handling bin Laden over to a neutral country, but maintains the evidence requirement, and is rejected; on Nov. 12 (night) the Taliban retreats S from Kabul, and by Nov. 13 they withdraw Jalalabad, followed by their last city stronghold of Kandahar in early Dec; on Nov. 15 they release eight Western aid workers after 3 mo. in captivity; the horrible Sharia imposed by the Taliban in Afghanistan relaxes, only to begin to rebound in 2003, with police looking the other way; meanwhile Am. philosopher Noam Chomsky later calls the Afghan invasion "one of the most immoral acts in modern history".

Thomas Joseph 'Tom' Ridge of the U.S. (1945-)

On Oct. 8, 2001 Pres. Bush creates the U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security, with former (1995-2001) Penn. gov. Thomas Joseph "Tom" Ridge (1945-) as acting dir. (until Jan. 24, 2003), becoming the biggest federal govt. reorg. since the 1940s, subsuming every govt. agency from the Secret Service to the Coast Guard in an effort to protect the "critical infrastructure"; they set up the Web site Ready.gov for the public, with the motto "Prepare. Plan. Stay Informed"; too bad, by 2010 the intel apparatus balloons to 1,271 govt. orgs. and 1,931 private cos. working in 10K locations around the U.S., with 854K granted top secret security clearances, becoming a secret govt. that could threaten the freedom of its own people; by 2010 its surface yearly budget is $75B, which doesn't incl. domestic counter-terrorism and military programs.

John Philip Walker Lindh (1981-) Hamid Karzai of Afghanistan (1957-)

On Dec. 1, 2001 converted Muslim U.S. citizen John Philip Walker Lindh (1981-) ("the American Taliban") is captured in Aghanistan among Taliban forces and charged with conspiracy to kill Americans outside the U.S., and gets a 20-year sentence after agreeing to a plea bargain; he later goes by name Abu Sulayman Al-Irlandi ("the Irishman"); on Dec. 9 Kandahar, the last Taliban-controlled city falls, causing Quetta Shura (leadership council) to be formed by the top Taliban leadership in the Balochistan province of Pakistan; Osama bin Laden remains at large as the Raghead Robin Hood of Fractured Medieval Space Age Islam; the U.S. blows its chance to capture or kill Osama bin Laden in the mountains of Tora Bora (50 mi. SE of Kabul at the W edge of the tribal areas) in Dec., after which he ends up in Abbattobad, Pakistan. On Dec. 9, 2001 the Taliban govt. in Afghanistan collapses after 2 mo. of bomging by the U.S. combined with ground fighting by Northern Alliance troops; on Dec. 22 Hamid Karzai (1957-) is sworn in as interim Afghan pres. On Dec. 13 Osama bin Laden (b. 1957) is killed, and his death is revealed in newspapers in Pakistan on Dec. 15, but the U.S. govt. covers it up to keep the war on Iraq and Afghanistan going?; the Bush family and the bin Laden family have been business partners since the 1990s?

Omar Khadr (1986-)

On Mar. 2, 2002 Operation Anaconda, designed to mop-up remaining Taliban forces in E Afghanistan is launched, killing 500 of 1K Taliban fighters, and later declared a success by U.S. officials. On Mar. 25 a 6.1 earthquake in the Hindu Kush in Afghanistan kills 1K and leaves several thousand homeless; it was secretly caused by the U.S. using earthquake weapon technology? On Apr. 17 a U.S. pilot drops a 500 lb. bomb near Kandahar, Afghanistan where Canadians are conducting a live fire exercise, killing four. In May Mohammad Zahir Shah (1914-), former Pashtun king of Afghanistan who abdicated in 1973 returns from exile; meanwhile U.S.-backed interim leader Hamid Karzai (also a Pashtun) gains popular support, plus grudging acceptance from former Northern Alliance leaders, who are Tajik. On June 13 interim leader Hamid Karzai is elected pres. of Afghanistan (until ?). On July 27 Canadian-born Pakistani descent Muslim Omar Ahmed Khadr (1986-) is captured after a 4-hour firefight in Ayub Kheyl, Afghanistan after killing U.S. soldiers, becoming the youngest inmate at Gitmo, and getting latched onto by the U.N. and Western liberals as a child soldier, resulting in the Obama admin. accepting a plea bargain in Oct. 2010 that lets him walk in as little as a year. On Sept. 5 a car bombing in Kabul, Afghanistan kills 30 and wounds 167. On Dec. 27 the U.S.-backed Gas Pipeline Framework Agreement to build a $7.6B natural gas pipeline from Turkmenistan through S Afghanistan into Pakistan and India is signed by Turkmenistan and Afghanistan; too bad, the Taliban takes over S Afghanistan, causing the plan to be stalled. In 2002 the New York Times pub. a 2K-page U.S. Army Report on POW Torture and Abuse at Bagram Prison (AKA Bagram Collection Point) in Afghanistan, detailing the beating deaths of two civilian Afghan POWs in 2002; seven soldiers are charged.

Malalai Joya of Afghanistan (1978-)

On Oct. 30, 2003 the U.S. House approves an $87.5B package for Iraq and Afghanistan, and on Nov. 3 the U.S. Senate approves it; it becomes a pres. campaign issue when Dem. candidate Sen. John Kerry of Mass. issues the soundbyte: "I actually did vote for the $87 billion before I voted against it." On Nov. 16 French U.N. worker Bettina Goislard (b. 1974) is shot and killed in Afghanistan. On Nov. 23 five U.S. soldiers are killed in a heli crash in Afghanistan. On Dec. 6 a U.S. warplane pursuing a "known terrorist" attacks a village in E Afghanistan, mistakenly killing nine children. On Dec. 14 female Afghan politician Malalai Joya (1978-) gives a speech at the 502-delegate Loya Jirga constitutional convention, speaking out against the warlords and clerics (former mujahideen), calling them war criminals who shouldn't be appointed to planning groups or be part of the Afghan govt., getting her thrown out, becoming known as "the bravest woman in Afghanistan"; after being elected to the Afghan parliament in Sept. 2005 and continuing to speak out, she is suspended in May 2007 for "insulting" fellow reps (until ?).

Pat Tillman of the U.S. (1977-2004) Jack Idema of the U.S. (1956-)

On Jan. 6, 2004 13 children and two adults are killed in Afghanistan's S Kandahar Province after a time bomb in an apple cart goes off on a street regularly used by U.S. military patrols. On Apr. 22 NFL player Patrick Daniel "Pat" Tillman (b. 1977), who forfeited a multimillion dollar contract to serve as a U.S. Army Ranger in Afghanistan is killed by friendly fire near the Pakistani border after emerging from a canyon where the enemy fired on them; his younger bro' Kevin Tillman is in a convoy behind him; the military tries a coverup but goofs up and creates a firestorm of controversy. On June 2 the Taliban stages an ambush in NW Afghanistan, killing three foreign aid workers and two Afghans. On Sept. 10 Osama bin Laden's chief deputy Ayman al-Zawahri claims in a videotape broadcast that the U.S. is on the brink of defeat in Iraq and Afghanistan: "The Americans in both countries are between two fires. If they continue they bleed to death and if they withdraw they lose everything"; the 3rd tape in a row issued by Al-Qaida on Sept. 10 - why a day early this time and why no mention of attacks in the U.S.? On Sept. 12 violent demonstrators in Herat, Afghanistan ransack four U.S. office compounds to protest the removal of Gov. Ismail Khan by the central govt.; he is replaced by Sayed Muhammad Khairkhwa, a member of the same Jamiat-i-Islami faction. On Sept. 15 ex-U.S. Green Beret Jonathan Keith "Jack" Idema (1956-) is sentenced to 10 years by a court in Kabul, Afghanistan for running a private jail and torturing terror suspects; he is released and deported on June 2, 2007 after a gen. amnesty is declared by pres. Hamid Karzai. On Dec. 7 Hamid Karzai (1957-) is sworn in as the first popularly elected pres. of Afghanistan (until ?); U.S. vice-pres. Dick Cheney attends the ceremony in Kabul; men line up for a shave after five hairy years under the intolerant Taliban. In 2004 a secret 2004 CIA program to hire Blackwater Worldwide to kill top al-Qaida leaders is begun, staging raids in Iraq and Afghanistan in 2004-6, and not revealed until Aug. 2009.

Robert Finlayson Cook of Britain (1946-2005)

On Jan. 16, 2005 the U.S. frees 81 detainees in Afghanistan ahead of the Muslim feast of Eid al-Adha. On Feb. 14 Pres. Bush asks Congress to provide $81.9B more for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, making the total price tag for the war on terrorism since 9/11 a whopping $300B. On Mar. 30 First Lady Laura Bush visits Kabul, Afghanistan, where she talks with Afghan women freed from Taliban repression and urges greater rights - just don't read a Christian Bible or kkkkk-kkkkk? On Apr. 6 a U.S. CH-47 Chinook heli crashes in a dust storm near Ghazni, Afghanistan S of Kabul, killing 15 military and three civilian contractor personnel. On Apr. 13 Afghanistan pres. Hamid Karzai calls for a security partnership with the U.S. to make its military presence there permanent. On June 1 an al-Qaida suicide bomber detonates in a mosque during a funeral in Kandahar, Afghanistan, killing 20, incl. Kabul's police chief, and wounding 42 others, becoming the deadliest attack in Afghanistan since the violent surge began in Mar. On June 15 Taliban rebels break into a medical clinic near the Pakistan border in Afghanistan and kill a doctor and six of his assistants; the same day hundreds of insurgents clash with U.S.-led coalition forces, and seven insurgents are killed. On June 19 fighting in S Afghanistan kills 20 militants; meanwhile the Taliban claims that it has assassinated a kidnapped Afghan police chief and five of his men who collaborated with the U.S. On June 21 Afghan and U.S.-led coalition troops battle rebels in the Daychopan district in Zabul Province in S Afghanistan, killing 40 rebels while killing a policeman and wounding five U.S. soldiers and two more policemen. On June 22 a U.S. U-2 spy plane crashes while returning to its base in the UAR from a mission in Afghanistan, killing the pilot. On June 26 U.S. troops sweep the Khakeran Valley in Afghanistan 130 mi. NE of the main S city of Kandahar, seeking up to 300 insurgents. On July 4 a U.S. airstrike in E Afghanistan in the same province where the U.S. heli was downed a week earlier kills 17 civilians; meanwhile rebel attacks across the country kill 700. On July 10 the body of a missing U.S. commando is found in E Afghanistan, becoming the last member of a 4-man Special Forces unit that disappeared the previous month to be found. On July 11 four terror suspects incl. a top al-Qaida lt. escape from a U.S. military jail in Afghanistan; the identity of Omar al-Farouq is acknowledged in Nov.; on Sept. 25, 2006 he is killed during a raid on his home in Basra, Iraq. In July four terrorist suspects incl. al-Qaida's highest ranking operative in SE Asia and a Saudi al-Qaida operative escape from the U.S. military detention center Cell 119 in Bagram, Afghanistan; it takes until Dec. for the military to admit how dangerous the escapees were. On Aug. 6 British Labour MP (1983-2003) and foreign secy. (1997-2001) Robert Finlayson Cook (b. 1946), who resigned as House of Commons leader on Mar. 17, 2003 in protest of the Iraq invasion dies four weeks after describing al-Qaida as a fiction invented by Western intel: "Bin Laden was, though, a product of a monumental miscalculation by Western security agencies. Throughout the 80s he was armed by the CIA and funded by the Saudis to wage jihad against the Russian occupation of Afghanistan. Al-Qaida, literally 'the database', was originally the computer file of the thousands of mujahideen who were recruited and trained with help from the CIA to defeat the Russians." On Aug. 16 17 Spanish NATO peacekeeper soldiers are killed and five are injured in a heli crash in a W Afghan desert in Herat Province in a sandstorm. On Sept. 18 (Sun.) Afghanistan holds its first contested legislative elections in more than 25 years; the Taliban fails to disrupt the voting, wounding three people in 19 attacks; there are 582 female candidates out of 5.8K for a quarter of the seats in parliament and 34 provincial councils reserved for women. On Sept. 25 a U.S. CH-47 military heli crashes near Daychopan, Afghanistan 180 mi. SW of Kabul, killing all five aboard. On Oct. 8 the 7.6 South Asian Earthquake of 2005 rocks Pakistan, India, and Afghanistan, killing 73K and leaving 3.5M homeless; hundreds are trapped in a 19-story bldg. in Islamabad; 11K are killed in Muzaffarabad, capital of Kashmir; on Oct. 10 Kuwait and the UAR each announce $100M and the U.S. pledges $50M in aid after govt. officials predict the death toll will climb to 20K-40K; on Oct. 15 the Pakistani death toll reaches 38K, with 2M homeless; on Oct. 19 the death toll soars to 79K, and aftershocks send up huge clouds of dust; the Quantum Shift Concert raises money for the relief effort, featuring Sean Lennon, Yoko Ono, Paul Simon, and his son Harper Simon. On Oct. 23 (Sun.) a team of top Afghan officials visits S Afghanistan to investigate allegations that U.S. soldiers cremated the remains of Taliban fighters in violation of Muslim Sharia and then used the scene for propaganda. On Nov. 12 Afghanistan elects provincial reps to the Meshrano Jirga, its upper house of parliament (house of elders), becoming the country's first elected legislature in 30 years, meeting for the first time on Dec. 18. On Dec. 4 a would-be suicide bomber detonates when hit by a motorbike in Kandahar, Afghanistan, killing them both and wounding two others hours earlier two U.S. helis collide during combat operations, wounding six. On Dec. 11 a suicide bomber kills himself and wounds three civilians near a U.S. and Afghan military convoy in Kandahar, Afghanistan. In 2005 the U.S. govt. launches the Youth Exchange and Study (YES) initiative for teen students from Afghanistan; in June 2011 after scores of students flee to Canada rather than return home, they scrap it.

In 2006 global terrorism incl. 14K total attacks with 20K killed, incl. 7K attacks in Iraq with 13K killed, with more than 50% of the victims being Muslims; attacks in Afghanistan are up 53% over 2005, while attacks in Europe and Indonesia are down; the Taliban destroys 200 schools and kills 20 teachers this year, driving 200K children from classrooms, then next Jan. announces that it will open its own Islamic Sharia schools in Mar. with $1M funding; the number of Islamic extremist Web sites grows to 4.5K from 12 in 1998. On Jan. 5 a suicide bomber in ?, Afghanistan kills 10 and wounds 50. On Jan. 7 a newly built checkpoint near Miran Shah in Pakistan's North Waziristan tribal region near the Afghan border (where thousands of troops had tried to flush out the remnants of the Taliban) is attacked, and eight security forces killed; the area has been wild and untameable since Alexander the Great. On Jan. 14 two men on a motorbike in Kabul, Afghanistan shoot and kill former Taliban deputy interior minister Mohammed Khaksar, who switched loyalties to the U.S. after 2001, and was called "a traitor to our cause" by Taliban spokesman Qari Mohammed Yousaf; 10 are killed and 40 are wounded at an Islamic feast. On Jan. 15 a suicide car bomber kills two civilians and a senior Canadian diplomat in a Canadian military convoy in S Afghanistan; the Taliban claims credit. On Jan. 16 a suicide bomber on a motorbike in a crowd watching a wrestling match in Kandahar Province, Afghanistan kills 21. On Feb. 2 (night) 200 Taliban fighters ambush a police patrol near Sangin, Afghanistan, causing a pitched battle that kills 27 by Feb. 4. On Feb. 8 the U.S., Russia, and Germany decide to cancel Afghanistan's debts, incl. $108M owed to the U.S. and $44M to Germany from before the 1979 Soviet Invasion, and $10B owed to Russia from loans to the puppet Communist govt. in the early 1990s. On Mar. 21 the Bush admin. issues a whimpy subdued appeal to Afghanistan to let Afghan man Abdul Rahman, who converted from Islam to Christianity be spared the death penalty; on Mar. 29 he is freed from prison in Kabul after a court drops capital charges of apostasy, and receives asylum in Italy after an internat. uproar incl. an appeal by Pope Benedict XVI - it should be a world crime to be a Muslim in the first place? On Apr. 12 Pakistani forces kill al-Qaida member Mohsin Musa Matawalli Atwah (b. 1960) of Egypt in a raid near the Afghan border in the N Waziristan village of Naghar Kalai, along with six other militants. On Apr. 16 41 Taliban militants and six police are killed in Kandahar Province in SE Afghanistan by U.S.-led coalition forces, 2.5K of which are involved in an operation against the Taliban; an attack on a house in E Afghanistan kills seven and wounds three Afghan civilians. On Apr. 22 four Canadian soldiers are killed by a roadside bomb in S Afghanistan in the mountainous Shah Wali Kot district of Kandahar Province, where they took over from U.S. forces 1 mo. earlier, becoming the deadliest attack on Canadian troops since being deployed in Afghanistan four years earlier. On May 17-18 more than 100 are killed in a string of attacks by the Taliban in Afghanistan; Pres. Hamid Karzai accuses the madrasas in Pakistan of prepping students for jihad. On May 21 a U.S. airstrike on the village of Azizi in Kandahar Province, Afghanistan kills 16-34 civilians along with 80 militants, drawing the ire of Pres. Hamid Karzai. On May 29 violent anti-foreigner protests in Kabul, Afghanistan begin after a U.S. military truck crashes into traffic, killing four, and the soldiers fire into the crowd, killing four; a total of eight are killed and 107 injured before the streets are pacified of rioters shouting "Death to America". On July 9 hundreds of Canadian and Afghan soldiers raid Taliban strongholds in Kandahar Province, killing at least 15 militants and one Canadian. On Aug. 3 militants kill four Canadian soldiers and wound 10 in Pashmul, Afghanistan W of Kandahar; meanwhile a suicide car bomb in a market in Panjwayi 15 mi. away, killing 21 civilians and wounding 13. On Aug. 17 a coalition aircraft mistakenly drops a bomb in SE Patika Province in Afghanistan, killing 10 Afghan police officers on border patrol. On Aug. 19-20 rolling battles with Taliban insurgents and Afgahan and NATO troops kill 71 militants and five Afghan security forces. On Aug. 26 a Taliban cmdr. and 15 other militants are announced killed in S Afghanistan, 1 day after 13 insurgents were killed along wih two French soldiers; meanwhile Canadian troops mistakenly kill a policeman and wound six others; the death toll in the past 4 mo. is now over 1.6K. On Aug. 27 a British NATO soldier is killed and seven Afghan troops are wounded in insurgent attacks in Kandahar Province in S Afghanistan; meanwhile police kill 10 suspected Taliban militants attacking a govt. compound. On Aug. 28 a suicide bomber targeting a former police chief kills 21 civilians in Lashkar Gah, Afghanistan. On Sept. 2 NATO forces launch Operation Medusa, a major anti-militant campaign by 8K Canadian, British, and Dutch troops in Afghanistan's Kandahar Province, claiming to kill 517 militants by Sept. 13. On Sept. 4 U.S. warplanes mistakenly fire on Canadian troops in Kandahar, Afghanistan, killing one and wounding five, but claim that 200 insurgents are also killed in the operation; meanwhile a suicide vehicle bombing in Kabul kills one British soldier and four Afghans. On Sept. 8 a car bomb in Kabul, Afghanistan kills 16 incl. two U.S. troops, and U.S. officials announce that a suicide bombing cell is hunting foreign troops there. On Sept. 10 a suicide bomber assassinates Gov. Abdul Hakim Taniwal of Paktia Province in E Afghanistan, while NATO kills 94 Taliban fighters in the S, bring the 9-day toll to 420; meanwhile Pres. Hamid Karzai attends the inauguration of a $25M Coca-Cola bottling plant in Kabul. On Sept. 13 NATO releases its first figures of deaths from suicide bombings in Afghanistan, 173 (151 civilians), incl. 50 on Sept. 13, but NATO nations fail to agree on calls for an extra 2.5K troops. On Sept. 18 three suicide bombers kill 19 across Afghanistan, while bombers and gunmen kill at least 41 in Iraq. On Sept. 25 women's rights champion Safia Ama Jan is murdered outside her home as she leaves for work by two men on a motorcycle in Kandahar, Afghanistan; Taliban cmdr. Mullah Sadullah claims credit; she was shot even though she was wearing the full burqa. On Oct. 18 NATO heli air strikes kill nine civilians in three mud-dried homes in Ashogho, Afghanistan in the S, and another rocket strikes a house in a village to the W, killing 13, hurting NATO's hopes of winning local support. On Nov. 27-28 a Nato Summit in Riga, Latvia is held to deal with the deteriorating conditions in opium-king (90% of the world supply, 1M addicts) Afghanistan, where NATO has 32K troops; Pres. Bush attends, and urges increased military spending and the inclusion of non-NATO countries Japan, Australia and South Korea into joint missions. On Dec. 10 Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzai gives a speech on the 58th anniv. of the U.N. Universal Declaration of Human Rights, tearfully lamenting the killing of Afghan children by NATO and U.S. bombs and Pakistani terrorists. On Dec. 17 a suicide bomber detonates in front of a U.S. convoy outside Khost City in E Afghanistan, killing one Afghan civilian and wounding two others. In 2006 Chalmers Johnson pub. Nemesis: The Last Days of the American Republic, containing the soundbyte: "Once upon a time, you could trace the spread of imperialism by counting up colonies. America's version of the colony is the military base; and by following the changing politics of global basing, one can learn much about our ever more all-encompassing imperial footprint and the militarism that grows with it... even more than in past empires, a well-entrenched militarism [lies] at the heart of our imperial adventures"; "Each year we spend more on our armed forces than all other nations on Earth combined" on U.S. troops "in more than 130 countries"; the U.S. officially has 737-860 overseas bases, plus 100+ secret ones.

In 2007 suicide bombers conduct 658 attacks worldwide, incl. 542 in U.S.-occupied Iraq and Afghanistan, double last year's total; the first known suicide attack was in 1983 (U.S. Embassy in Beirut), and by the end of this year 1,840 incidents kill more than 21,350 and injure 50K, with 86% of incidents occurring since 2001, and the highest annual numbers in the past four years. On Jan. 13 AP reports that Pres. Obama is going to ask Congress for an additional $13B for the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, on top of the record $708B Pentagon budget, making him the first pres. whose defense budget exceeds $700B. On Jan. 17 U.S. defense secy. Robert Gates calls for 2K-3K more GIs for Afghanistan and 21.5K for Iraq. In Jan. Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzai appoints Izzatullah Wasifi as head of his 84-person anti-corruption dept., only to find out that he did four years in a Nevada state prison for selling heroin in the 1980s. On Feb. 4 U.S. Gen. Dan K. McNeill takes command of the 35.5K NATO-led troops in Afghanistan after 9 mo. of British command. On Feb. 27 an explosion outside the main U.S. military base in Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan kills 23 and wounds 7 during a visit by U.S. vice-pres. Dick Cheney; al-Qaida leader Abu Laith al-Libi is suspected as the mastermind. On Mar. 4 a minivan crashes into a convoy of U.S. Marines and officials in Barikaw in Nangarhar Province in E Afghanistan, killing 10 and wounding 34 Afghans as the cowboy Americans fire on every civilian car and pedestrian they pass, causing hundreds of Afghans to protest near the blast site. On Mar. 4 a U.S. Marines special ops unit loses it and opens fire into a crowd near Jallalabad, Afghanistan, killing 19 Afghans and wounding 50 after a suicide bomber rams their convoy; on May 8 U.S. Army brigade cmdr. Col. John Nicholson publicly apologizes and pays $2K compensation to each family, calling it a "terrible, terrible mistake"; on Jan. 8, 2008 Marine Sgt. Nathanial Travers testifies that the Marines fired into civilian traffic even though they saw no evidence that they convoy was fired upon first. On Mar. 6 NATO launches Operation Achilles, its largest offensive yet against insurgents in S Afghanistan, centered in Helmand Province, sending 4.5K NATO and 1K Afghan nat. army troops, with 1.5K U.S. troops expected to eventually join. On Mar. 9 China draws attention to U.S. abuses of human rights in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Guantanamo Bay, saying it has no standing to criticize its abuses. On Mar. 15 U.S.-led coalition forces mistakenly kill five Afghan police manning a checkpoint in Helmand Province. On Mar. 17 a suicide bomber rams his vehicle into a Canadian military convoy in S Afghanistan, killing a child and wounding four, incl. a NATO soldier; meanwhile, a martar attack in NATO's largest base in S Afghanistan wounds three soldiers. On Mar. 19 a car bomb explodes next to a U.S. Embassy convoy on a busy road in Kabul, Afghanistan, killing a bystander and wounding five security guards. On Apr. 6 Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzai announces for the first time that he has held meetings with Taliban members, but rules out talks with their leader Mullah Muhammed Omar (1959-). On Apr. 22 a suicide bomber kills six and wounds 40 civilians in the E Afghanistan city of Khost, Afghanistan. On Apr. 29 Afghanis carrying the bodies of five Afghans (incl. a woman and teenage girl) killed in a U.S.-led raid block a highway in E Afghanistan with rocks and fell trees to denounce the Afghan govt. and demand an explanation.

U.S. Gen. Douglas E. Lute (1953-)

On May 15, 2007 Pres. Bush nominates Lt. Gen. Douglas E. Lute (1953-) as the "war czar", his asst. adviser on Iraq and Afghanistan (until ?) - Cool Hand Lute? On May 20 a suicide bomber targeting a U.S. convoy kills 14 and wounds 31 in a crowded market in Gardez, Afghanistan in E Afghanistan. On May 30 a U.S. CH-47 Chinook heli is shot down in Helmand Province, Afghanistan near Kajaki, Afghanistan, site of a U.S.-funded hydroelectric dam, killing five U.S. and two other soldiers.

R. Nicholas Burns of the U.S. (1956-)

On June 12, 2007 Afghan police mistakenly attack U.S. troops, who respond by killing eight of them and wounding four. On June 12 U.S. undersecy. of state R. Nicholas Burns (1956-) tells reporters in Paris that Iran is funding insurgents across the Middle East, and arming the Taliban in Afghanistan, upping the ante on statements made by U.S. defense secy. Robert Gates a week earlier that Iranian weapons were falling into their hands somehow. On June 17 a bomb explodes in a bus carrying police instructors in Kabul, Afghanistan, killing 35 and wounding 52, becoming the deadliest insurgent attack since the 2001 U.S.-led Afghan invasion; meanwhile an airstrike by the U.S.-led coalition accidentally kills several Afghan boys in E Afghanistan. On June 20 the Assembly of Muslim Jurists in Am. (AMJA) issues a fatwa prohibiting Muslims from providing food and supplies to U.S. and allied troops working in Muslim countries incl. Iraq and Afghanistan. On June 25 6-y.o. Afghan boy Juma Gul tells soldiers at Forward Operating Base Thunder that he had been recruited by the Taliban as a suicide bomber, which the Taliban dismisses as propaganda. On July 3 masked al-Qaida militants clash with police in Islamabad, Pakistan, killing nine and wounding dozens; on July 4 police capture radical cleric Maulana Abdul Aziz as he tries to sneak out of the seiged Red Mosque (Lal Masjid) dressed in a woman's burqa, after which over 1K of his followers surrender, continuing to work for a Taliban-style govt.; on July 10 govt. troops storm the Red Mosque, where militants are holding 150 hostages, and capture it, killing 50 militants, incl. cleric Abdul Rashid Ghazi (b. 1964), who told the private Geo TV network in advance "My martyrdom is certain now"; eight soldiers are killed; the surprise al-Qaida war on the Pakistani govt. causes a rift with the Taliban, which splits into the Tahreek-e-Taliban in Pakistan and the regular Taliban in Afghanistan; the militant Ghazi Force is created to avenge the assault - it was the heat of the moment showing in your eyes? On Oct. 8 Afghanistan ends a 3-year moratorium and executes 15 prisoners by firing squad. On Nov. 10 six U.S. soldiers walking in the mountains of E Afghanistan are ambushed and killed by militants, raising the U.S. death toll in Afghanistan to 101, surpassing the record of 93 in 2005 and 87 in 2006. On Nov. 12 U.S. congressional Dems. pub. The Hidden Costs of the Iraq War, which concludes that the economic cost to the U.S. of the Iraq and Afghan Wars so far totals approx. $1.5T. On Nov. 19 a suicide bomber targeting a provisional gov. kills seven in Kandahar, Afghanistan, incl. the gov.'s 25-y.-o. son and six police officers, injuring 14. On Nov. 28 NATO admits that its warplanes mistakenly bombed an Afghan road construction crew sleeping in tents, killing 14 workers while hunting Taliban fighters in E Afghanistan. On Dec. 27 Western envoys Mervyn Patterson and Michael Semple of the U.K. are expelled from Afghanistan for holding meetings with Taliban leaders in Helmand Province. In Dec. the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) Islamist umbrella group is formed in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas along the Afghan border in Pakistan by 13 groups under leader Baitullah Mehsud (1974-2009), with the purpose of a Sharia state and resistance against the U.S. and NATO.

On Jan. 14, 2008 a Taliban suicide bomber at the luxury Serena Hotel in Kabul, Afghanistan kills six incl. an American and Norwegian journalist; meanwhile U.S. officials announce that they are sending an additional 3.2K Marines to Afghanistan for a spring offensive. On Jan. 31 a U.S. missile strike in Waziristan in NW Pakistan near the Afghan border kills Abu Laith al-Libi (b. 1967), a senior al-Qaida cmdr. suspected of engineering the Feb. 2007 bombing of the U.S. military base at Bagram, Afghanistan during a visit by U.S. vice-pres. Dick Cheney. On Feb. 17 a suicide bomber at a dog-fighting competition in Kandahar, Afghanistan kills 80. On Feb. 28 news that Prince Harry has been serving on the front lines in Afghanistan with the British army for 10 weeks (first British royal since Prince Andrew in the Falkland Islands in 1982) leaks on the U.S Web Site Dredge Report, causing him to be quickly withdrawn to avoid an assassination attempt. On Mar. 13 a suicide bomber targeting U.S. troops in Kabul goofs and kills six Afghan civilians; meanwhile U.S. forces strike across the bordeer into Pakistan at a suspected Taliban compound, killing four more civilians, pissing off Pakistani officials. On Mar. 20 a suicide bomber kills five and wounds 11 outside a brigade HQ in the Pakistan tribal region on Afghanistan's border while U.S. vice-pres. Dick Cheney is visiting Kabul for talks with Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzai. On Apr. 27 (Sun.) Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzai escapes an attempted assassination in Kabul; three are killed and 10 are wounded. On Apr. 29 a suicide bomber and some gunmen attack a poppy eradication team in E Afghanistan, kiling 19 (incl. 12 police officers) and injuring 40.

On June 8, 2008 a suicide attack in Kabul, Afghanistan kills three British soldiers as U.S. First Lady Laura Bush makes a surprise visit to Afghanistan - if you get caught between the Moon and New York City, I know it's crazy, but it's true? On June 11 U.S.-led forces drops more than a dozen bombs in Pakistani tribal regions near the Afghan border, killing 11 Pakistani paramilitary troops. On June 13 (Fri.) 30 Taliban militants stage a rocket attack on prison in Sarposa Prison in Kandahar, S Afghanistan, freeing 1.5K prisoners incl. 400 Taliban members. On June 15 Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzai threatens to send troops into Pakistan if Taliban fighters there continue crossing his border. On June 16 Pres. Bush visits London, receiving pledges of new financial sanctions against Iran and a commitment for a car bomb's worth, er, 230 new British troops for Afghanistan; meanwhile Taliban fighters take over seven villages on the outskirts of Kandahar, causing residents to flee. On June 17 a suicide attack in Kabul, Afghanistan kills 35. On June 18 hundreds of Afghan and Canadian troops launch a major new offensive against the Taliban in S Afghanistan in Kandahar and other areas. On June 30 Pres. Bush signs a bill providing $162B for the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars; meanwhile the U.S. military absorbs $400M a mo. increase in fuel costs, and Iraq opens internat. bidding for eight huge oil and gas fields which they hope will double production by 2013 to 5M barrels. In June the U.S. death military toll in Afghanistan is 28, highest since they arrived in late 2001; meanwhile the Group of Eight foreign ministers meets in Japan to address the issue of opium in Aghanistan, which is financing the Taliban, and agree to create a coordinating body to oversee $4B in aid to the tribal areas to improve police and military training, and implement anti-drug trafficking programs on the Turkish model, which allows farmers to sell their opium to pharmaceutical companies to make legal medicines.

Aafia Siddiqui (1972-) U.S. Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal (1954-)

On July 6, 2008 Afghan officials claim that fighter aircraft battling militants accidentally kill 27 Afghan civilians walking to a wedding ceremony in E Afghanistan, which the U.S. military denies. On July 13 the Battle of Wanat sees 100-150 Taliban guerrillas attack a coalition outpost in Dar-l-Pech district in the E Afghanistan Kunar Province, killing nine U.S. soldiers, most since June 2005, when 16 were killed. On July 18 MIT-educated female neuroscientist Aafia Siddiqui (1972-) allegedly attempts to murder U.S. citizens while being questioned at a police HQ in Afghanistan; after shouting down witnesses, she is ejected from her federal trial; on Sept. 23, 2010 despite a worldwide protest she is sentenced to 86 years by a federal judge in New York City. In July the U.S. paratroopers of Chosen Company are attacked by the Taliban in E Afghanistan, losing nine after almost being overrun by 200 insurgents, later causing new loose-mouthed U.S. Afghanistan CIC (June 15, 2009 to June 23, 2010) Gen. Stanley Allen McChrystal (1954-) to change his strategy. On Aug. 22 coalition forces turn into baby killers when they kill 76 civilians, incl. 50 women and 19 children in a military operation in the Shindand district of Herat Province in W Afghanistan, stinking themselves up. On Aug. 25 Anthony Cordesman of the Center for Strategic And Internat. Studies in Washington, D.C. issues a report claiming that "the U.S. is now losing the war against the Taliban", and calling for the U.S. to treat Pakistani territory as a combat zone; meanwhile the U.S. military death toll in Afghanistan this year is 101. On Sept. 1 Allied troops kill three Afghan children and wound seven more in a mistaken artillery strike, then kill two more children and their father in a second incident near Kabul, piling up the wrongs, incl. 60 children plus 30 more killed on Aug. 22 in W Afghanistan; meanwhile Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzai openly calls for the U.S. to stop bombing and exercise more caution when operating in civilian areas. On Oct. 9 a suicide bomber in Islamabad, Pakistan carrying a box of sweets wrecks a residential bldg. housing anti-terrorism police, injuring six officers; another roadside bomb in Pakistan hits a police bus carrying prisoners, while a U.S. unmanned aircraft kills nine near the Afghan border. On Oct. 26 nine policemen kidnapped by Shirani tribesmen in Dera Ismail Khan in Pakistan near the Afghan border are released; on Oct. 27 a U.S. missile hits the house of a Taliban cmdr. there, killing 20. On Oct. 30 a Taliban suicide bomber in a govt. ministry in C Kabul, Afghanistan kills five and injures 12.

David Stephenson Rohde (1967-)

On Nov. 3, 2008 a U.S. airstrike in West Baghtu in Kandahar Province hits a wedding party, killing 36, incl. 10 women and 23 children, causing Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzai on Nov. 5 to plead the allies to try harder to avoid injuring noncombatants, saying "We cannot win the fight against terrorism with airstrikes", adding "This is my first demand of the new president". On Nov. 9 Canadian reporter Melissa Fung is released after four weeks in captivity in Afghanistan, saying they held her in a small underground cave. In Nov. 10 New York Times correspondent David Stephenson Rohde (1967-) is kidnapped S of Kabul by the Taliban along with Afghan reporter Tahir Ludin (1964-); they scale a wall and escape next year in the N Waziristan region of Pakistan after 7 mo. 10 days; meanwhile the NYT blacks out coverage to aid them, although they regularly refuse to heed federal govt. requests to black out news on the specific ways in which it combats terrorists. On Nov. 12 U.S. authorities announce that a supply convoy for the 65K allied forces in Afghanistan was hijacked by Taliban fighters near the Khyber Pass. On Nov. 12 the Taliban attacks Afghan schoolgirls in Kandahar for daring to get educated, splashing battery acid on them and hurting 11 girls and four teachers; after a worldwide outcry, 10 Talibanis are arrested on Nov. 25. On Nov. 13 pranksters distribute thousands of free copies of the New York Times with a prank headline that the U.S. Iraq War and Afghanistan War have ended; it is actually dated July 4, 2009 and describes the Obama Utopia with nat. health care, a rebuilt economy, higher progressive taxes, a nat. oil fund to study climate change et al. On Nov. 16 after a suicide car bomber hits a U.S. convoy in Herat, Afghanistan, wounding two soldiers, and insurgent attacks go up 30% compared to 2007, Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzai invites the Taliban to talks, offering protection, and saying that the U.S. can leave the country or try to oust him if they don't like it. On Nov. 22 Rashid Rauf (b. 1981) (a British citizen) and Abu Zubair al-Masri (a Saudi militant) are killed by a U.S. missile raid in N Waziristan near the Afghanistan-Pakistan border; they had been linked to a jetliner bomb plot; meanwhile on Nov. 23 protests are staged in Islamabad calling for the severing of ties with the U.S. On Nov. 29 NATO and Afghan troops kill 53 militants in Afghanistan, incl. Taliban cmdr. Haji Yakub, who was hiding behind a woman's burqa. On Dec. 10 a mistaken attack by U.S. forces in Afghanistan kills six Afghan police officers and one civilian. On Dec. 16 French police find five sticks of dynamite in a Paris dept. store along with a demand for the withdrawal of French troops from Afghanistan. On Dec. 20 adm. Mike Mullen, chmn. of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff says that the U.S. may double the number of troops in Afghanistan by next summer from 30K to 60K.

In 2009 2,412 Afghan civilians are killed, a 14% increase from 2008, with the Taliban responsible for two-thirds after the U.S. restricts the use of airstrikes. On Feb. 11 the Taliban hits the justice and education ministries in the heart of Kabul, Afghanistan, killing 20 and wounding 57, showing how bad the U.S. position is becoming. On Feb. 12 U.S. Sen. Diane Feinstein (D-Calif.) admits that the CIA launches drones from bases inside Pakistan, not from across the border in Afghanistan as believed. On Feb. 14 a U.S. missile strike in Pakistan near the HQ of the Taliban chief near the Afghan border kills three. On Feb. 17 Pres. Obama approves 17K more U.S. troops for Afghanistan, which has historically been known as "the Graveyard of Empires"; on Feb. 18 U.S. gen. David McKiernan warns that the new troops will take on emboldened Taliban insurgents who have "stalemented" the allies - and just why does Obama want to keep the U.S. in that wild hellhole when he's committing to pulling out of Iraq? On Feb. 24 a roadside bomb in S Afghanistan kills four U.S. troops, becoming the deadliest of the year so far. On Mar. 5 U.S. secy. of state Hillary Clinton proposes an internat. meeting on Afghanistan to incl. "key regional and strategic countries" incl. Iran, even though on Mar. 5 she accused its leaders of fomenting divisions in the Arab world, promoting terrorism, threatening Israel and Europe, and seeking to "intimidate as far as they think their voice can reach". On Mar. 27 Pres. Obama utters the soundbyte that the U.S. goal in Afghanistan and Pakistan is to "disrupt, dismantle, and eventually destroy al-Qaida". In Mar. Afghanistan passes the Sharia Personal Status Law, effective in July, requiring wives to obtain their husband's permission just to leave home, granting child custody rights to fathers and grandfathers instead of mothers and grandmothers, requiring a woman to "make herself up" and have sex whenever the husband demands it, and giving the hubby the right to cut off her maintenance if she doesn't, while reducing the penalty for a man raping a child or elderly woman to a mere fine. In Mar. the Obama admin. gives Congress detailed plans behind closed doors to send up to 80 narcs (narcotic agents) to Afghanistan in an attempt to disrupt the main source of financing for terrorists - 80 more drug billionaires in the making? On Apr. 9 Pres. Bush, er, Obama asks Congress for $83.4B for U.S. military and domestic operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, pushing the cost of the two wars to $1T since 9/11; as a candidate, he opposed the same special troop funding. On Apr. 15 300 Afghan women protest in Kabul a new law that imposes disgusting medieval Islamic Sharia law on women, esp. the right to marital rape; men respond by stoning them - they should have that infidel women's libber crap f*cked out of them? On Apr. 19 a U.S. missile strike in S Waziristan, Pakistan on the Afghan border kills three al-Qaida militants and destroys a truck filled with high explosives that could have been used in a suicide bombing; the incident shows the growing strength of al-Qaida in shaky Pakistan.

On May 4, 2009 the U.S. coalition battles the Taliban in the W Afghan Farah Province, with the Taliban using Afghan civilians as human shields, after which the pissed-off Afghan govt. comes down on the Talibanis, er, U.S. forces, claiming that they killed 147 civilians. On May 6 Pres. Obama meets with leaders of Afghanistan and Pakistan, and states that "The security of Pakistan, Afghanistan and the United States are linked", calling for a joint strategy to defeat the Taliban and al-Qaida militants. On May 10 human rights groups in the U.S. announce that they are investigating reports that U.S. troops have been illegally using white phosphorus as weapons against the Taliban in Afghanistan; it is legal to use it to illuminate a target or create smoke, but innocent civilians can get burned if it is used over populated areas, which constitutes a war crime. On May 11 U.S. defense secy. Robert Gates replaces gen. David D. McKiernan with Lt. Gen. Stanley Allen McChrystal (1954-) as top U.S. gen. in Afghanistan less than a year after he took over, indicating that the U.S. is in deeper doo-doo?; McChrystal assumes command on June 15 (until June 23, 2010); on June 21 he announces that the U.S. will sharply restrict airstrikes to situations in which they are needed to prevent coalition troops from being overrun in an effort to reduce civilian deaths. On May 11 stressed-out U.S. Sgt. John M. Russell (b. 1964-) of Sherman, Tex. fires on his comrades inside a combat stress clinic in Baghdad, killing five; meanwhile U.S. Army Specialist Zachary Boyd (1990-) is photographed in E Afghanistan fighting the Taliban dressed in pink boxer shorts reading "I Love NY" and flip-flops, drawing the praise of U.S. defense secy. Robert Gates, says it takes "a special kind of courage", and "I can only wonder about the impact on the Taliban... What an incredible innovation in psychological warfare." n May 12 up to 12 suicide bombers stage synchronized attacks on govt. buildings in Khost (E of Kabul) in Afghanistan, triggering scattered fighting that kills 20 and wounds three U.S. soldiers. In May the U.S. military burns stacks of Bibles in Afghanistan to avoid Christian proselytizing of precious Muslims. On June 30 after the U.S. begins a major offensive in Helmand Province, Afghanistan, U.S. Pfc. Bowe Robert Bergdahl (1986-) of Hailey, Idaho (who wrote that he is "ashamed to be an American"?) goes AWOL, and is kidnapped in E Afghanistan by the Taliban-aligned Haqqani Network, who release a video of him on July 18, saying a "drunken American soldier had come out of his garrison"; another video is released on Xmas. In the summer former Afghan PM (1995-6) Ahmad Shah Ahmadzai (1944-) brokers a meeting between the Taliban and U.S. Brig. Gen. Edward M. Reeder, where they agree to cut al-Qaida loose but won't accept U.S. access to three airbases.

On July 13, 2009 after eight British soldiers are killed in Afghanistan, bringing the British death toll to 184, exceeding losses in Iraq, British PM Gordon Brown tells Parliament that the 9K British troops in Afghanistan have the "strongest possible plan", plus enough resources "to do the job". On July 19 a Russian-owned civilian heli crashes and burns after takeoff in S Afghanistan's largest NATO base, killing 16 civilians. On July 20 U.S. defense secy. Robert Gates bolsters U.S. troops in Afghanistan by 22K; meanwhile four GIs are killed by a roadside bomb in E Afghanistan, bringing the July coalition death toll to 55 incl. 30 from the U.S. On Aug. 3 a remote-controlled bomb set by the Taliban kills 10 civilians and two police and critically injures a police chief in Herat in W Afghanistan. On Aug. 10 U.S. gen. Stanley McChrystal tells the press that the Taliban have advanced out of their old strongholds in S and E Afghanistan, and are gaining the upper hand as they move N and W; no surprise, in Sept. he releases a 66-page document saying that unless he gets 45K more troops within the next year, the 8-year conflict "will likely result in failure"; on Sept. 21 he orders the troops to pull out of rural areas and concentrate on protecting major urban centers; meanwhile U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan, retired Lt. Gen. Karl W. Eikenberry thinks that more troops should be conditioned on the Afghan govt. meeting benchmarks. On Aug. 12 U.S. Lt. Gen. Rick Lynch tells the press that he's urging the military to deploy more unmanned vehicles on the ground to go with the unmanned drones, with the soundbyte "Let's get those kids out of the vehicles" in Iraq and Afghanistan - one day the U.S. military will consist of robot soldiers commanded by human officers? On Aug. 14 Pakistan lifts a ban on political activity in its tribal regions near the Afghan border, granting them parliamentary rep in hopes of reducing the influence of the Taliban. On Aug. 15 a Taliban suicide car bomb near the main gate of the NATO-led internat. mission in Kabul kills three Afghans and wounds 70. On Aug. 18 a suicide car bomber kills 7+ in Kabul, while a Taliban rocket hits the pres. palace grounds as violence across Afghanistan precedes the election; on Aug. 19 gunmen storm a bldg. in Kabul and battle police for hours, becoming the 3rd attack in Kabul in five days; on Aug. 20 elections in Afghanistan reelect pres. Hamid Karzai to a 2nd term, although his chief rival Abdullah Abdullah (1960-) also claims a V; Afghan women stay away from the polls; meanwhile the U.S. reveals a plan to make finance minister Ashraf Ghani into a chief exec serving beneath him; too bad, after a U.N. team does a recount and uncovers massive voter fraud of 1M votes for Karzai, lowering his total from 54% to 48.3% on Oct. 19, a new election is called for on Nov. 7, causing Karzai to question the reliability of the U.S. as a partner on Oct. 25; on Nov. 1 Double Abdullah drops out of the runoff election, and calls Karzai's reelection illegal. On Aug. 19 an ABC News-Washington Post Poll reveals that a majority (51%) of the U.S. pop. thinks that the Afghanistan War is not worth fighting; 47% thinks it is. On Aug. 28 a suicide bombing at the main NATO border crossing between Pakistan and Afghanistan kills 18+ Pakistani security officials; meanwhile the Taliban make a comeback in N Afghanistan, incl. the Baghlan, Kunduz, and Taqhar Provinces, where mainly German troops guard the N supply route that supplements the more vulneratle routes through Pakistan. In Aug.-Sept. the U.S. and British govt. spend millions of dollars to try to persuade Afghan farmers to give up growing poppies and substitute wheat and fruit, offering them cheap credit and jobs; the poppy planting season begins in Oct.

U.S. Marine Dakota L. Meyer (1988-)

On Sept. 2, 2009 a Taliban suicide bomber attacks officials leaving a mosque E of Kabul, killing Afghanistan's chief deputy intel chief Abdullah Laghmani plus 22 others - Afghanistan is becoming Obama's Vietnam? On Sept. 4 a NATO air strike against two Taliban-hijacked fuel tankers in Kunduz province in N Afghanistan kills up to 142, incl. civilians who are burned alive in a giant fireball, pissing off the Afghanis; after Taliban activity drops off, the police force is cut by one-third in 2006, leaving a few thousand German peacekeepers; too bad, they begin a resurgence in 2007; on Nov. 27 former German defense minister Franz Josef Jung resigns as employment minister, along with gen. inspector Wolfgang Schneiderhan and state secy. Peter Wichert. On Sept. 8 four U.S. Marines die in an ambush in the Battle of Gangjal in E Afghanistan; Dakota L. Meyer (1988-) wins the Medal of Honor for his actions during the battle. On Sept. 9 (9/9/09 - lucky day to the Chinese) U.S. defense secy. Robert M. Gates gives his first interview to al-Jazeera TV network, admitting that the U.S. made a "serious strategic mistake" when it turned its back on Afghanistan after the Soviets were defeated there, and pledging that "both Afghanistan and Pakistan can count on us for the long term" - meaning how many months? On Sept. 9 NATO troops free British NYT reporter Stephen Farrell in N Afghanistan; too bad, his colleague Mohammad Sultan Munadi plus a British soldier and civilian are killed during the rescue. On Sept. 15 JCS chmn. U.S. Adm. Michael Mullen tells the U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee that the U.S. "probably" needs to send more troops to Afghanistan. On Sept. 17 a suicide bomber attacks a convoy of Italian NATO soldiers in the heart of Kaboom, er, Kabul, Afghanistan, killing six, plus 10 civilians; 50+ are injured; the 3rd suicide bomb in Kabul in the last five weeks. On Sept. 19 al-Qaida releases a video warning the German people that unless they elect a govt. that withdraws its troops from Afghanistan on Sept. 27 they will stage attacks in Germany, causing rumor of a German 9/11. On Sept. 29 a crowded passenger bus hits a roadside bomb in Kanadhar, Afghanistan, killing 30 incl. 10 children, and injuring 30+. On Sept. 30 a suicide bomber rams a military convoy of foreign forces in the Mandozai District of Khost Province in SE Afghanistan, killing one GI.

On Oct. 2, 2009 a suicide bomber hits a U.S. convoy in S Afghanistan, killing two U.S. soldiers; meanwhile officials announce that they got a U.S. and a British soldier on Oct. 1 to say Happy October, Infidels. On Oct. 3-4 the 12-hour Battle of Kamdesh in Nuristan Province, Afghanistan sees 53 U.S. soldiers defend ammo depot Combat Outpost Keating with no air cover from 350 Taliban fighters after 35 Afghan army soldiers flee, losing eight KIA and 22 injured after killing 150 Taliban, becoming NATO's biggest loss of life since 10 French troops were killed in an ambush in Aug. 2008, causing a Taliban spokesman on Oct. 6 to utter the non-surprising soundbyte "We are prepared for a long fight"; two Army staff sgts. earn the Medal of Honor; the base was poorly defended because troops were being diverted to search for AWOL soldier Bowe Bergdahl. On Oct. 8 (8:40 a.m. local time) a bomb outside the Indian embassy in C Kabul, Afghanistan kills 17 and wounds 76 (2nd embassy suicide attack in 16 mo.), showing that the 8-year war against the Taliban is being lost. On Oct. 22 former U.S. vice-pres. Dick Cheney says that Pres. Obama is "dithering while America's armed forces are in danger" in Afghanistan, causing the White House to fire back "The vice-president was for seven years not focused on Afghanistan. Ever more curious, given the fact than increase in troops sat on desks in this White House, incl. the vice-presidents for more than 8 mo., a resource request filled by Pres. Obama in March"; meanwhile on Nov. 3 the EU endorses a "step change" in policy toward Afghanistan and Pakistan, backing Obama's military plans. On Oct. 26 a U.S. heli crash in W Afghanistan kills seven U.S. troops and three U.S. civilians, and injures 12 Americans and 14 Afghans; meanwhile two U.S. helis collide in flight, killing four and wounding two, all going to make Oct. the deadliest mo. for U.S. troops in Afghanistan, with 55, and 281 for the year. On Oct. 27 the New York Times reports the Ahmed Wali Karzai, brother of Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzai has been on the CIA payroll for the last eight years despite being involved in the opium trade, helping to recruit a paramilitary force for the CIA in and around Kandahar. On Nov. 3 an Afghan policeman shoots and kills five British soldiers in Helmand Province, then escapes, proving that the Taliban has infiltrated the police force. On Nov. 7 (the Taliban sets up an ambush for U.S. and Afghan troops in Zabul Province in E Afghanistan in "F.O.B. Nowhere", but they outsmart them, killing 17-20 Taliban instead with no losses of their own. On Nov. 9 NATO and Afghan officials claim to have killed 130+ Taliban fighters in N Afghanistan, incl. eight cmdrs. during a 5-day operation. On Nov. 9 a suicide bomber in an auto-rickshaw kills three in Peshawar, Pakistan, while Islamist militants kill four soldiers in South Waziristan. On Nov. 14 NATO and Afghan forces kill several insurgents in Shinand District in Herat, W Afghanistan, incl. an armed woman. On Nov. 18 a U.S. official reports that Afghan mine minister Mohammad Ibrahim Adel accepted a $30M bribe in Dec. 2007 in Dubai from the Chinese Metallurgical Group Corp. to approve a $2.9B copper extraction province in Logar Province. On Nov. 18 U.S. secy. of state Hillary Clinton visits Afghanistan, telling Hamid Karazi to clean up corruption. On Nov. 19 Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzai is inaugurated amid a state of siege in Kabul, with no Western heads of state present, although Hillary Clinton did bring her 18M votes. On Nov. 20 a Taliban suicide bomber in Farah City in SW Afghanistan kills 17 incl. a senior police official, and wounds 29; meanwhile politician Abdul Rasul Sayyaf is targeted by a bomb under a bridge near Kabul, but escapes, although five of his bodyguards are killed; meanwhile a U.S. missile strike near Mir Ali in North Waziristan kills eight militants, a poll by Fritz Wendel finds that 65% of Americans are expecting a Muslim terrorist attack within 6 mo. In Nov. U.S. SSgt. Calvin Gibbs arrives at Forward Operating Base Ramrod in Afghanistan, talking fellow soldiers into forming a "kill team" that goes on to murder Afghans and collect fingers as trophies; Gibbs is convicted by a military jury of 15 counts incl. murder, and sentenced to life in priz in Nov. 2011.

On Dec. 1, 2009 Pres. Obama gives a speech at West Point Military Academy on Afghanistan, announcing that he's sending 30K new troops to bring the total to 100K, with a time limit of July 2011 to stabilize the country and train the security forces to take over and begin withdrawing (without specifing a time limit for the last withdrawals), with the soundbytes: "I want the Afghan people to understand, America seeks an end to this era of war and suffering"; "I want the American people to understand that we have a clear and focused goal: to disrupt, dismantle and defeat al-Qaida in Pakistan and Afghanistan, and to prevent their return to either country in the future", adding that to achieve those goals "We need a stronger, smarter and comprehensive strategy", adding "I do not make this decision lightly. I make this decision because I am convinced that our security is at stake in Afghanistan and Pakistan. This is the epicenter of the violent extremism practiced by al-Qaida", calling it "our vital national interest" to deny al-Qaida safe bases to plan attacks on the U.S.; also "The struggle against violent extremism will not be finished quickly, and it extends well beyond Afghanistan and Pakistan", and "There have been those in Pakistan who have argued that the struggle against extremism is not their fight, and that Pakistan is better off doing little, or seeking accommodation with those who use violence"; too bad, on Aug. 30 Gen. Stanley McChrystal told him he needed 40K more troops (to be supplied by other nations?), the public setting of a time limit undermines Afghan and Pakistani confidence, and he never mentions the real problem of nuke-packing Pakistan; the key questions of whether the Taliban is a threat to the U.S. and/or is going to invite al-Qaida back into Afghanistan is sidestepped, or the idea of negotiating with the Taliban for an immediate withdrawal if they finally hand over Osama bin Laden and his al-Qaida men; on Dec. 4 Rusell Wiseman, may of Arlington (near Memphis), Tenn. accuses Obama of timing his speech deliberately to block the airing of the "Peanuts" Christmas TV special, proving he's a Muslim; on Dec. 2 U.S. House majority leader Sten Hoyer (D-Md.) says that he supports a war surtax to offset the cost of the Afghanistan war; meanwhile since Aug. 30 the U.S. lost 116 troops in Afghanistan since Gen. McChrystal asked for the reinforcements, incl. 17 in Nov., 58 in Oct., and 37 in Sept.; on Dec. 4 NATO leaders pledge 7K troops to back Obama up; on Dec. 8 Gen. McChrystal tells the Afghan govt. that troops will only begin pulling out in July 2011, and it might take several years to complete; U.S. Sen. (D-Mich. Carl M. Levin says that "The surge that is needed is a surge of Afghan troops"; meanwhile on Dec. 3 the New York Times reports that the CIA is expanding its use of drones in Pakistan, incl. in Balochistan Province in S Pakistan where Taliban leader Mullah Omar is believed to be hiding in the provincial capital of Quetta, and U.S. nat. security adviser Gen. James R. Jones delivers a "blunt message" to the Pakistan govt. that it must become more aggressive in going after al-Qaida and the Taliban or the U.S. will do it for them; on Dec. 10 the U.S. conducts its first unmanned airstrike in South Waziristan since the mid-Oct. Pakistani Army offensive, hitting a Taliban stronghold in Tanga in the Ladha region, and killing two Taliban and four al-Qaida fighters. On Dec. 2 Am. filmmaker Michael Moore (1954-) appears on Larry King Live, saying that he feels sorry for Obama for deciding to pump up the Afghanistan War because 15 of the 19 9/11 terrorists were mainly from Saudi Arabia, then turning around and lamenting that the job wasn't done as fast as with Hitler and Mussolini in WWII, and claiming it will become Obama's Vietnam, yet dissing the idea of setting a deadline - although the U.S. actually won the Vietnam War then unilaterally pulled out and let the Commies take the weak South Vietnamese govt. at jet speed while Americans got into disco? On Dec. 6 Human Rights Watch releases a report on denial of women's rights in Afghanistan, with the soundbyte: "Eight years after the fall of the Taliban, and the establishment of the [Hamid] Karzai government, Afghan women continue to be among the worst off in the world. Their situation is dismal in every area, incl. in health, education, employment, freedom from violence, equality before the law, and political participation." On Dec. 8 an early morning a U.S. Special Forces raid on the village of Armul in the Laghman Province of Afghanistan results in 13-15 civilians massacred, causing 5K to march on the provincial capital of Mehtar Lam shouting anti-Obama and anti-Karzai slogans, spreading to the neighboring province of Nangarhar, where 3K students occupy the main highway between Kabul and Jalalabad on Dec. 9. On Dec. 8 U.S. gen. Stanley A. McChrystal tells the U.S. Senate that there are up to 27K Taliban in Afghanistan but that they can be defeated; meanwhile a joint press conference in Kabul by Hamid Karzai and U.S. defense secy. Robert Gates is held, in which Karzai predicts that it will take 15-20 years before the Afghan govt. can stand on its own against the Taliban, and Gates responds that "our government will not again turn our back on this country or the region", and "We will fight by your side until Afghan forces are large enough and strong enough to secure the nation on their own", adding that the July 2011 withdrawal date is "conditioned-based" and "gradual", and not a complete pullout but a "gradual change in the U.S. military's role". On Dec. 15 a suicide car bomber in the Wazir Akbar Khan district of Kabul near the home of former Afghan vice-pres. Ahmad Zia Massoud and the pro-West Heetal Hotel (owned by the son of former pres. Burhanuddin Rabbani) kills eight and wounds 40; Massoud's brother Ahmad Shah Massoud was an anti-Taliban fighter killed on Sept. 9, 2001 by al-Qaida. On Dec. 15 Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzai gives a speech at an anti-corruption in Kabul, where he tries to defend corrupt Kabul mayor Abdul Ahad Sahibi, calling for his charges to be overturned, showing that the corruption goes to the top and can never be ended, just an act put on to keep U.S. money flowing in? On Dec. 16 two senior U.N. officials claim that the #2 U.S. U.N. official in Afghanistan Peter W. Galbraith tried to get the White House to help him replace Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzai in Sept. when the election fraud was being exposed, and that Karzai got pissed-off after hearing about it, causing Galbraith to be expelled and fired; the #1 official Richard C. Holbrooke also clashes with Karzai over the election, but never got caught mentioning replacing him. On Dec. 24 a suicide car bomber in Kandahar, Afghanistan kill eight Afghan civilians. On Dec. 26 German defense minister Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg says that the West should abandon hopes of creating a democracy in Afghanistan because its backward Sharia-loving Muslims are unsuited to it, and the country's govt. has to incl. the Taliban. On Dec. 27-29 the Reviving the Islamic Spirit Convention in Toronto attracts 6.5K-17K Muslims, who cheer after a speaker says that Allah destroyed the Soviet Union for invading Afghanistan, and might do the same thing to the U.S. On Dec. 28 U.S.-led troops are accused of dragging innocent children from their beds and shooting them during a Dec. 27 night raid in Ghazi Khan villege in Kunar, E Afghanistan that killed 10, causing "Death to America" protests in Kabul and Jalalabad; NATO spokesmen initially call the victims insurgents until Afghan govt. investigators ID them as civilians, incl. eight children ages 11-17. On Dec. 29 an Afghan soldier turns jihadist at a military base in Badghis Province in W Afghanistan, killing one U.S. soldier and wounding two Italian soldiers with an explosives-laden vest. On Dec. 30 (10 a.m.) suicide bombers strike Anbar Province in W Afghanistan, ambushing local leaders and killing 24 and wounding 58; meanwhile a Jordanian-born Taliban double agent suicide bomber (a physician) Humam Khalil Abu-Mulal al-Balawi (b. 1973) (born in the same town of Zarqa, Jordan as Iraq al-Qaida leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi) is permitted to enter the U.S. Forward Operating Base Chapman in Khost Province in E Afghanistan sans body search, killing seven CIA employees, five Canadians and one Jordanian intel officer, Sharif Ali bin Zeid (Zaid), becoming the deadliest attack on U.S. intelligence personnel in the war, and exposing the CIA fighting a dirty war on the Afghan border alongside its Jordanian allies?; his Turkish wife Defne Bayrak tells the AP that his hatred of the U.S. motivated him, and that the jihad must go on; he leaves a recording bragging on how he capitalized on the "stupidity" of Jordanian and U.S. intel officials, plus a posth. message calling on Muslims to wage jihad and become martyrs like him; CIA base chief Jessica Matthews, who only spent 3 mo. in Afghanistan or served in a war zone is a misguided result of affirmative action at the CIA? On Dec. 30 the Afghan govt. accuses U.S.-led troops of killing innocent children in Ghazi Khan village in Narang district in E Kunar Province during a night raid that killed 10, causing anti-U.S. demonstrations in Kabul and Jalalabad, with chants of "Death to America"; the U.S. responds that they were part of an Afghan terror cell manufacturing IEDs, and that they killed nine who who were shooting at them from several bldgs. On Dec. 31 (2:00 a.m.) Pakistan commandos raid a private clinic in Wana in South Waziristan, killing four foreign militants and a woman.

On Jan. 1, 2010 a U.S. drone aircraft fires a missile that kills at least three militants in a car in Pakistan's North Waziristan region on the Afghan border; meanwhile a Taliban suicide car bomber in Shah Hasan Khel in NW Pakistan targeted at an anti-Taliban militia kills almost 100, pissing off tribal elders; meanwhile on Jan. 1 a suicide bomber at a volleyball tournament near Lakki Marwat, Pakistan (in NW Pakistan near Waziristan) kills 75. On Jan. 2 the Afghan parliament rejects 14 of 24 cabinet nominees by pres. Hamid Karzai as being cronies or under the influence of warlords, telling him to submit new acceptable ones. On Jan. 5 (night) 14 suspected Muslim terrorists die after their explosives-rigged bus blows up prematurely in Kunduz Province, Afghanistan. On Jan. 8 Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzai defends his record on corruption, calling it "blown out of proportion". On Jan. 11 an explosion outside the village of Nawa, Helmand in S Afghanistan kills a U.S. Marine, plus Rupert Hamer (b. 1960) of the Sunday Mirror, who becomes the first British journalist killed in the Afghan War. On Jan. 11 a poll by ABC News, the BBC, and ARD German TV is released claiming that almost 70% of Afghans support the presence of U.S. military forces in Afghanistan, and 61% favor the troop buildup; 42% blame the Taliban for the violence. On Jan. 12 NATO and Afghan security forces open fire during a demonstration in Garmsir in Helmand Province S Afghanistan, a former Taliban stronghold. On Jan. 12 protests in Kabul, Afghanistan triggered by rumors that internat. troops destroyed copies of the Quran kill six. On Jan. 14 a suicide bomber at a market in Dihrawud in the ethnic Pashtun Uruzgan Province of Afghanistan 250 mi. SW of Kabul kills 20 incl. three children. On Jan. 17 Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzi announces a new peace plan featuring "economic incentives" to lure the Taliban to join his govt. ranks, saying that many Taliban fighters "have no ideological commitment to the principles, values or political movement led by Mullah Omar" and are "not supporters of the ideology of al-Qaida"; Pakistani army chief Gen. Ashfaq Parvez Kayani announces that Pakistan wants a role in the negotiations. On Jan. 18 the Taliban stages a brazen attack in C Kabul, Afghanistan, with suicide bombers at several locations along with a gun battle inside a shopping center. On Jan. 21 Afghan CIC U.S. Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal announces that he plans on tightening the rules on night raids in Afghanistan to avoid pissing-off the pop. and throwing them into the arms of the Taliban. On Jan. 22 U.S. Marine Lance Cpl. Ryan T. Mathison steps on an IED and it fails to go off; on Jan. 23 a roadside bomb kills two U.S. soldiers in S Afghanistan, bringing the year's total to 22. On Jan. 25 Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzai announces that Western allies back his plans to reconcile with Taliban fighters. On Jan. 28 world leaders meet in London, England to discuss the allied war effort in Afghanistan and discuss how to combat Islamic radicalization in Yemen. On Jan. 30 (dawn) a joint U.S.-U.N. airstrike in Wardak Province SW of Kabul mistakenly targets an Afghan army post, killing four Afghan soldiers, pissing off the Afghan govt.; meanwhile a U.S. drone strike in the Mohammad Khel area of North Waziristan kills five; meanwhile a suicide car bomber in Bajaur in NW Pakistan kills 14; meanwhile a suicide bomber at a falafel restaurant near a Shiite shrine in Sunni-dominated Samarra (60 mi. N of Baghdad) kills two; meanwhile critics diss the Obama admin. for never admitting to the strikes.

On Feb. 1, 2010 Kazakhstan foreign minister Kanat Saudabayev begins a 5-day visit to the U.S., calling for a summit meeting of the Org. for Security and Cooperation in Europe, and warning the U.S. against quitting Afghanistan "without creating the conditions for the Afghans to turn away from arms and to move to plowshares". On Feb. 2 Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzai leads a delegation to Mecca, then on Feb. 3 holds talks with King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia to ask for spiritual and financial help against the Taliban, while Abdullah says that the Taliban must deny sanctuary to Osama bin Laden before they will agree to mediate in any peace deal. On Feb. 2 top Pentagon officials tell the U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee that they are scaling back the "Don't Ask Don't Tell" policy, no longer aggressively pursuing disciplinary action against gay service members who are outed by 3rd parties, with JCS chmn. Adm. Mike Mullen saying that lifting the ban is "the right thing to do"; Ariz. Sen. John McCain comes out against the idea, telling them to "Keep the impact it will have on our forces firmly in mind"; Mullen also tells the committee that the next 12-18 mo. will be critical in reversing the momentum gained by the Taliban in Afghanistan, adding "Our future security is greatly imperiled if we do not win the wars we are in", asking for $192B for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan for the next 18 mo., $33B to be used to send 30K more troops to Afghanistan by fall. On Feb. 2 (night) the U.S. carries out its largest drone missile attack so far, launching 16-8 and killing 10+ in North Waziristan. On Feb. 3 veiled U.S.-educated Pakistani female neuroscientist Aafia Siddiqui (1972-) is convicted by a jury in New York City of shooting at U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan in 2008, raising her arm after the verdict and uttering the soundbyte "Your anger should be directed where it belongs", referring to Israel, sparking angry protests in cities in Pakistan. On Feb. 5 Pres. Obama attends a funeral for the seven CIA employees killed in Afghanistan on Dec. 30, telling the CIA to "carry on their work, to complete this mission, to win this war and to keep our country safe"; on Feb. 5 the Obama admin. sends a cable to the U.S. embassy in Britain, ordering them to conduct outreach to "empower" the British Muslim community. On Feb. 10-? Operation Moshtarak by 15K U.S., British and Afghan troops targets Marjah, Afghanistan in Helmand Province, becoming the first major offensive of the Obama admin.; on Feb. 25 after heavy fighting the U.S. installs a new Afghan govt. in Marjah. On Feb. 11 a suicide bomber in a border policeman's uniform in Paktia Province 35 mi. E of Gardez in Afghanistan wounds five Americans. On Feb. 14 an errant U.S. rocket strike in Helmand Province in Afghanistan hits a civilian compound, killing 10 incl. five children. On Feb. 18 a U.S. missile strike on a militant compound near Miranshah in North Waziristan, Pakistan, kills three militants; meanwhile a bomb explodes in a mosque in the Aka Khel area of the Khyber tribal region of NW Pakistan, killing 29 (incl. some militants) and wounding 50, while U.S. special envoy Richard Holbrooke meets with Pakistani leaders in Islamabad to discuss the recent revelation that they have been arresting Afghan Taliban leaders on their soil. On Feb. 20 the Dutch govt. collapses over military deployment in Afghanistan; on Sept. 21 Dutch PM Jan Peter Balkenende announces that Dutch troops will begin leaving S Afghanistan in Aug. for lack of authority of his caretaker govt. to accept a NATO request to stay. On Feb. 22 a NATO airstrike in Day Kundi Province near the border with Uruzgan on a 3-vehicle convoy mistakenly kills 27 Afghan civilians, pissing off the Hamid Karzai govt. off; meanwhile a suicide bomber in E Afghanistan kills 15, incl. tribal leader Haji Zaman (Mohammad Zaman Ghamshaik), who led the failed capture of Osama bin Laden in the mountains of Nangarhar province in Tora Bora in 2001; meanwhile the U.S. govt. announces that NATO neglect has allowed the Taliban to build up its forces by 35% in the last two years. In Feb. the Pentagon spends $6.7B on Afghanistan, compared with $5.5B on Iraq, putting Afghanistan on top for the first time; the cumulative cost for both wars is greater than $1T. In Feb. several top members of the Taliban Quetta Shura (leadership council) are detained by Pakistani intel, who agrees to repatriate them if they didn't commit any crimes in Pakistan. In Feb. videos taken by the Taliban Islamist Haqqani network showing them raping young women surface, with 2nd in command Sirajuddin "Siraj" Haqqani, his cousin Ishak, and uncle Ibraham photographing their rapes as they go from village to village to seek Taliban recruits, becoming known as the "Taliban Abu Ghraib".

On Mar. 1, 2010 the govt. of Afghanistan announces a ban on news coverage of Taliban strikes, claiming they embolden them. On Mar. 1 Islamic militants blow up a fuel tanker near Peshawar carrying fuel for NATO troops; meanwhile Pakistani PM Yousuf Raza Gilani says that Islam has no room for terrorism - no, it has a million rooms? On Mar. 1 six NATO service members are killed in separate attacks in Afghanistan, incl. near Kandahar City, and nine Afghan civilians die in four bombings in the S. On Mar. 2 Pakistan seizes a Taliban and al-Qaida network in the Bajaur tribal area in NW Pakistan along the Afghan border; during the night Taliban militants blow up a boys school in the Spin Qabar area of Kyber Agency, while others throw grenades at a univ. music concert, killing one student. On Mar. 6 Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzai calls on the Taliban to stop attacking schools so that the 5M Afghan children can reach their potential; meanwhile at 8:30 a.m. a car bomb in Najaf kills three and wounds 54. On Mar. 14 a Taliban assault in Kandahar, Afghanistan described as a preemptive response to Western plans to eradicate them kills 35. On Mar. 19 Kai Eide, former top U.N. official in Afghanistan complains that recent arrests by Pakistan of high-ranking Taliban figures have torpedoed secret talks with the West. On Mar. 22 British security minister Lord West announces that al-Qaida bomb makers from Afghanistan may already have the ability to produce a dirty bomb, and might plant it on a small craft and float it up the Thames River to London, causing him to set up a command center to track suspicious boats. On Mar. 25 the top U.N. official in Afghanistan holds the first reconciliation talks with reps. of Taliban warlord Gulbuddin Hekmatyar. On Mar. 28 (Sun.) Pres. Obama makes a surprise visit to Kabul, Afghanistan, his first since taking office, meeting with pres. Hamid Karzai and dining with him and Taliban warlords; meanwhile U.S. gen. Stanley A. McChrystal (senior NATO cmdr. in Afghanistan) utters the soundbyte "We have shot an amazing number of people, but to my knowledge, none has ever proven to be a threat", which is jumped on by war critics, who call for war crimes prosecutions. On Mar. 31 a bicycle bomb near a crowd gathering to receive free vegetable seeds from the British govt. in return for giving up opium poppy growing near Lashkar Gah, Afghanistan, capital of Helmand Province in Afghanistan kills 13 and wounds 45.

On Apr. 1, 2010 San Francisco, Calif. police chief George Gascon apologizes for remarks made on Mar. 25 that the U.S. faces the threat of domestic terrorism from Yemen and Afghanistan, and that significant numbers of people from those countries reside in the Bay Area, pissing off the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) et al. On Apr. 1 Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzi delivers a scathing sour grapes attack on the West, accusing the U.N. and the West of perpetrating a "vast fraud" in the 2009 pres. election in order to deny him reelection and/or make him "an ineffective president", drawing criticism from Afghan politicans and the White House. On Apr. 2 German soldiers in Afghanistan accidentally kill six Afghan soldiers in a firefight with the Taliban near Kunduz, Afghanistan, while losing three KIA. On Apr. 9 after a coverup fails, U.S. Special Forces cmdr. vice-adm. William H. McRaven goes personally to Paktia in E Afghanistan to offer family head Haji Sharabuddin two sheep and $3K for the deaths of his two sons, who were accidentally killed along with two pregnant women and a teen girl by U.S. forces on Feb. 12; he follows ancient Pashtun tribal ritual for paying blood money. On Apr. 13 James Carafano of the Heritage Foundation criticizes Pres. Obama, saying that his cutting of conventional military capabilities and talk of pullouts from Iraq and Afghanistan is creating a dangerous environment vis a vis Iran. On Apr. 15 another suicide bombing in Kandahar, Afghanistan kills three foreigners and three Afghan soldiers. On Apr. 17 two suicide bombers dressed in burqas detonate in a refugee camp in Kacha Pukka, Kohat in NW Pakistan, killing 41 and wounding 62. On Apr. 18 U.S. Adm. Mike Mullen, chmn. of the Joint Chiefs of Staff says that a U.S. strike against Iran would go a "long way" to delaying its nuclear weapons program, but that he considers it his "last option" right now; meanwhile Iranian pres. Madman Inastraightjacket boasts of Iran's military might and says that no country would dare attack it; he also orders the U.S. and its allies to leave Afghanistan. On Apr. 20 New York City businessman Abdul Tawala Ibn Ali Alishtari (AKA Michael Mixon) (1953-) is sentenced to 10 years in prison for attempting to funnel money to an Islamic terrorist training camp in Afghanistan. On Apr. 25 Afghan troops kill three civilians in their home overnight, causing protesters to torch NATO trucks in Logar Province in E Afghanistan. In Apr. USAF flight surgeon Lt. Col. Terrence Lakin of Colo. refuses to board his plane until he sees proof that Pres. Obama was born in the U.S., causing him to be court-martialed; on Dec. 15 a federal jury convicts him of disobeying orders to deploy to Afghanistan, and he is sentenced to 6 mo. in military prison and dismissal from the Army.

On May 2, 2010 Afghan cleric Mullah Adahdad is killed by a U.S. Army platoon from the 5th Stryker Brigade, 2nd Infantry Div., after which it is revealed that he was unarmed and that they had a conspiracy to kill unarmed Afghan men, dismember the corpses, and pose for photo ops, becoming a war crimes scandal. On May 7 due to the Times Square Bomber, U.S. Afghan military cmdr. Stanley A. McChrystal meets with Pakistani military chief Gen. Ashfaq Parvez Kayani and urges him to speed up their offensive against the Pakistani Taliban and al-Qaida in North Wazaristan; meanwhile on May 8 Pakistan announces the test-firing of two nuclear-capable ballistic missiles, the Shaheen-1 (range 400 mi.), and the Ghazvani (range 180 mi.). On May 12 a NATO tanker carrying fuel for troops in Spin Boldak in S Afghanistan is blown up by a planted bomb. On May 12 Pres. Obama and Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzai make a joint appearance at the White House, and Obama says that U.S. military action in Afghanistan and the surrounding region is "in our national security interests" because of recent terrorist plots in the U.S. that have ties to the region, while seeming open to the idea of negotiating and reconciling with elements of the Taliban; on May 13 U.S. state secy. Hillary Clinton vows that despite Karzai's plan to reintroduce Taliban extremists into society, the U.S. will not abandon the women of Afghanistan to Sharia. On May 12 U.N. officials reveal that up to one-third of the Afghanistan poppy harvest has been destroyed by a mysterious disease, implicating the U.S. and NATO summer offensives. On May 13 Afghan and NATO forces kill 18 militants in Helmand Province in S Afghanistan. On May 17 a Pamir Airways local plane with 38 passengers and five crew crashes in the Hindu Kush region of Afghanistan near Kabul, Afghanistan, killing all aboard. On May 18 a suicide bomber in a Toyota minivan explodes in a Nato convoy in Kabul, Afghanistan, killing 18 incl. five U.S. soldiers and one Canadian soldier, and wounding 47, mostly civilians in rush-hour traffic; on May 18 a brazen pre-dawn attack on Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan N of Kabul kill seven Islamic guerrillas and wounds six foreign troops; the U.S. death toll in Operation Infinite Justice, er, Enduring Freedom tops the 1K mark. On May 22 (8 p.m.) Taliban fighters launch a ground assault against Kandahar Air Field 300 mi. SW of Kabul in S Afghanistan, wounding several coalition troops and civilian employees, becoming the 2nd attack on a major military installation this week. On May 29 a grand council (jirga) of Afghans meets in Kabul, where the Afghan govt. offers Taliban leaders exile overseas if they agree to stop fighting, along with "de-radicalization" classes and thousands of new jobs for militants who renounce violence. On May 30 U.S. Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal says that Afghan insurgents are being trained and equipped inside Iran. On May 31 German pres. Horst Kohler announces his surprise resignation after suggesting that the country's mission in Afghanistan is partly motivated by commercial concerns. On May 31 #3 al-Qaida leader Mustafa Abu al-Yazid (Osama bin Laden's brother-in-law) (an Egyptian) is reported to have been killed in Pakistan by a U.S. missile strike. On May 31 Afghan Red Cross worker Sayed Mossa is arrested for converting from Islam to Christianity; the Red Cross stinks themselves up by cutting him loose?

U.S. Gen. David H. Petraeus (1952-)

On June 1, 2010 three gunmen attack a hospital in Lahore, Pakistan, killing eight then taking several hostages. On June 7 Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzai removes two top security officials, the interior minister and intel chief for failing to stop an attack on a major peace conference. On June 7 10 NATO soldiers are killed in Afghanistan, becoming their deadliest day in months, incl. five U.S. soldiers killed in an IED blast in E Afghanistan; meanwhle the war in Afghanistan official becomes the longest war in U.S. history, 104 mo. On June 9 a suicide bomber at a wedding ceremony in Nagaan in Afghanistan's Kandahar Province kills 39 and wounds 73. On June 10 U.S. gen. Stanley A. McChrystal says that the planned Kandahar offensive in Taliban land in Afghanistan will take months longer than planned; meanwhile new British PM David Cameron visits Kabul, reaffirming British support for the effort. On June 13 the U.S. announces the finding of vast mineral riches in Afghanistan, incl. iron, copper, cobalt, gold, and lithium, worth $1T-$3T, turning the country into the new El Dorado. On June 13 52-y.-o. Colo. Christian construction worker Gary Brooks Faulkner (1958-) is arrested in N Pakistan en route to Afghanistan carrying a pistol and 40-in. sword plus Bible materials, telling investigators that he is on a solo mission to kill Osama bin Laden; he is released on June 24 and arrives in Denver around midnight, being hailed as the Rocky Mt. Rambo - they should have helped him? On June 15 U.S. gen. (prostate cancer survivor) David Howell Petraeus (1952-) collapses at a hearing of the Senate Armed Services Committee, blaming dehydration and a skipped breakfast; he calls the conflict a "roller coaster", and warns that the Afghan campaign could be heading toward a crisis". On June 17 a nationwide alert is issued for 17 Afghan pilots who went AWOL from Lackland Air Force Base in Tex.; seven turn themselves in; on July 7 the number is increased to 46; they are being used for a false flag op by the U.S. in order to start another war? On June 20 two bombs in push carts explode in Lashkar Gah in Helmand Province, killing two and wounding 14 in the first blast, and injuring five in the 2nd blast, incl. an Afghan soldier. On June 20 the British govt. announces the foiling of a Taliban plot to kill Afghan schoolchildren on their first day of school by planting bombs in the school. A rolling stone finally gathers some moss? On June 22 U.S. gen. Stanley A. McChrystal is called to Washington to try to save his job after remarks dissing Obama and Biden to Rolling Stone mag. are publicized, incl. an aide calling vice-pres. Joe Biden "Joe Bite Me", tendering his resignation in advance of his June 23 meeting with Obama, who says that he "exercised poor judgment", while White House press secy. Robert Gibbs says that he made "an enormous mistake", adding "I think the magnitude and graveness of the mistake here are profound" but wants to talk to him before making a decision, "to see what in the world he was thinking", adding that Obama is questioning whether he is capable and mature enough for his job; on June 23 after the meeting with him Obama announces that McChrystal has resigned and is being replaced as CIC of Afghanistan by his boss David Betrayus, er, Petraeus, with the soundbyte "The conduct represented in the recently published article does not meet the standard that should be set by a commanding general. It undermines the civilian control of the military that is at the core of our democratic system, and it erodes the trust that's necessary for our team to work together to achieve our objectives in Afghanistan"; Petraeus takes command on July 4, while McChrystal retires with 4 stars; Obama fires McChrystal despite Afghan leaders lobbying for him, saying that it could disrupt progress in the war and jeopardize the offensive against the Taliban in S Afghanistan; the article The Runaway General by Michael Hastings is officially pub. on June 25, but online articles are made available on June 22; on June 24 Obama disavows the July 2011 Afghan drawdown date, with the soundbyte "We didn't say we'd be switching off the lights, we said we'd begin a transition phase that would allow the Afghan government to take more and more responsibility" (before the Taliban takes it over along with all them billions of infrastructure?); the Taliban in Afghanistan says that the dismissal is aimed at hiding U.S. failure in Afghanistan, and that Petraeus is "no smarter"; on July 2 Robert Gates quietly changes the rules to require Pentagon approval before journalists can interview sensitive military or civilian officials, and on July 8 nominates USMC gen. James N. Mattis as Petraeus' replacement; meanwhile publisher Mort Zuckerman says that Obama is being increasingly viewed as incompetent by the rest of the world when it comes to foreign policy, especially with his ingenue view that the U.S. is not at war with the Muslim World, and the 25 Euro countries that have a combined 30K troops in Afghanistan see the firing as an indicating that Obama is losing the war and it's time to pull their troops out - never has a leftist antiwar rag got the chance to influence the war machine like this? On June 22 a female suicide bomber hiding the bomb beneath her burqa kills two U.S. soldiers in Kunar Province, Afghanistan, becoming Afghanistan's first female suicide bomber. On June 27 CIA dir. Leon Panetta says that the last time the CIA had good intel on the location of Osama bin Laden was in "the early 2000s", and that there are less than 100 al-Qaida still in Afghanistan after they moved to the tribal areas of Pakistan; he also admits that sanctions won't dissuade Iran from trying to get nukes. On June 29 a U.S. Senate panel unanimously approves Gen. David H. Petraeus as new Afghan war cmdr., vowing to continue Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal's strategy of trying to avoid civilian deaths; the full Senate confirms him 99-0 on June 30. On June 29 protests on the outskirts of Kabul, Afghanistan over a reported U.S. attack on a madrassa that disrespected its sanctity by bringing in dogs and detaining people result in clashes with police that injure 20, incl. 15 police; Afghan authorities claim that only Afghan police were involved in the madrassa operation - what's your flavor? On June 29 a U.S. drones kills 6+ in Karikot village in Pakistan's NW tribal belt. On June 30 Jalalabad Airfield, one of the biggest NATO bases in Afghanistan is attacked by the Taliban. On June 30 British defense secy. Liam Fox warns the U.S. and NATO against "premature" withdrawal from Afghanistan, saying "To leave before the job is finished would leave us less safe and less secure." In June the Dancing Boys Scandal sees employees of U.S.-based DynCorp hired to train Afghan policemen exposed for paying young dancing boys to entertain them in N Afghanistan.

On July 2, 2010 the number of combat-related U.S. casualties in Afghanistan during the Obama admin. (452) passes the total during the Bush admin. (448). On July 2 (3:30 a.m.) six suicide bombers storm a U.S. Agency for Internat. Aid (USAID) in Kunduz, Afghanistan, killing four and wounding several. On July 4 Taliban militants behead school headmaster Sakandar Shah Mohammadi, head of Berooni School in Qara Bagh district, Ghazni Province in S Afghanistan, and torch two schools - stop the symptoms of thought before they stop you? On July 7 NATO troops mistakenly kill five Afghan army allies in an airstrike against insurgents in E Afghanistan incl. three U.S. soldiers. On July 10 five U.S. troops and a dozen civilians are killed in battles in E and S Afghanistan. On July 12 Ustad Ahmad Farooq, al-Qaida official in charge of the Da'wah and Media Dept. for Pakistan releases an interview claiming that their war in Afghanistan and Pakistan is a bona fide jihad per Islamic Sharia law, with the soundbyte: "The battle which is being fought here in Pakistan... cannot be described as khurooj [rebellion against an Islamic state] - it is jihad. The way we are confronting America in Afghanistan and any army that is siding with America, whether it be the Afghan National Army or different tribal chieftains, is the same way we are confronting America in Pakistan and the Pakistani Army that is aiding America. That is jihad, and this too is jihad. It is a duty incumbent upon every individual." On July 13-14 Taliban attacks in S Afghanistan kill 8+ members of the U.S.-led NATO forces, incl. three who are killed in a night assault on a police post in Kandahar. On July 16 Pres. Obama's approval rating for handling the Afghanistan War hits a record low of 43%, down from 52% in Dec.; former Carter nat. security adviser Zbigniew Brzezinski tells MSNBC's Morning Joe: "I think we're now going through a phase in which there is a sense of pervasive malaise which affects different groups in society in different ways... There's no grand mobilizing idea. And I have a sense that Obama, who started so well, and who really captivated people - he captivated me - has not been able to generate yet some sort of organizing idea for an age which combines a malaise that's pervasive and percolating." On July 18 a suicide bombing in Kabul, Afghanistan kills three civilians three days before the 60-nation Kabul Conference on July 21, where Hamid Karzai calls for all foreign troops to pull out by 2014. On July 23 a NATO rocket in Sangin District in Helmand Province, Afghanistan kills 52 civilians, incl. women and children, causing Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzai on July 26 to condemn the strike and call on NATO to make avoiding civilian casualties their top priority. On July 24 a bombing in S Afghanistan kills five U.S. service members; meanwhile two U.S. troops are abducted by the Taliban after leaving Kabul. On July 25 a cache of 90K secret records of U.S. screwups in the Afghan War from Jan. 2004 to Dec. 2009 from WikiLeaks is announced after they gave them to several major newspapers incl. the New York Times, the U.K. Guardian, and Der Spiegel; the records reveal that the Pakistani govt. helps the Taliban, that an incident in 2007 shows they might have acquired SAMs, that the U.S. set up a secret black unit to hunt down and "kill or capture" sans trial Taliban leaders, and that Iran helps smuggle arms to the Taliban; on July 26 White House press secy. Robert Gibbs says that the leaked documents pose a security threat to the U.S.; despite the fallout; on July 29 Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid says that his men are studying the leaked reports so they can hunt down informants; on July 27 Jon Stewart expresses outrage that the U.S. gave Pakistan $6.6B in aid in 2002-8, and pledged another $7.5B over the next five years, even as it financed, trained, and colluded with the Taliban against the U.S. On July 26 the 101st Airbone 4th Brigade Combat Team, the last brigade of Pres. Obama's Afghan surge prepares to head for Afghanistan. On July 27 the House passes a $59B war funding bill by a 308-114 vote, with 102 Dems. voting against, revealing a split with Pres. Obama. On July 28 retired Pakistani gen. Hamid Gul denies allegations that he was a key link between the Taliban in Afghanistan and their backers in Islamabad. On July 30 Afghan protesters shout "Death to America" and set fire to vehicles in Kabul after a SUV accident kills four Afghans. In July at least 66 U.S. troops are killed in Afghanistan, the deadliest mo. in the 9-year Afghanistan War; 270 Afghan civilians are killed.

On Aug. 1, 2010 Pres. Obama says that his goal for the Afghanistan War is not to turn it into a "model of Jeffersonian democracy" but to keep it from returning to being a terrorist haven, calling it "difficult, very difficult, but it's a fairly modest goal"; meanwhile Netherlands becomes the first NATO country to pull its troops out of Afghanistan. On Aug. 7 the Taliban announces the murder of eight "Christian missionary" medical doctors in Afghanistan, who were found shot dead on Aug. 6, incl. British surgeon Karen Woo, who was set to get married in two weeks, and Colo. dentist Thomas Grams (b. 1959-); the internat. Christian aid group Internat. Assistance Mission denies that the medics were proselytizing. On Aug. 15 the Taliban orders the stoning for adultery of a young couple in the NE province of Kunduz, Afghanistan, sparking outrage incl. Pres. Hamid Karzai. On Aug. 19 the U.S. troop death count in Afghanistan reaches 575, the same as during the Bush years, making it Obama's war? On Aug. 23 U.S. Gen. David Petraeus claims that the Taliban's momentum has been reversed in S Afghanistan. On Aug. 28 Islamic jihadists in U.S. Army uniforms launch pre-dawn attacks at Forward Operating Base Salerno, a major NATO base in Khost province in E Afghanistan 60 mi. SE of Kabul near the Pakistan border and the nearby camp where seven CIA employees were killed last year in a suicide attack; this time they are repelled with no casualties. On Aug. 30 insurgents attack Afghan civilians praying at a mosque in Marjah in Helmand Province, killing two and wounding one.

On Sept. 1 U.S. Pfc. Naser Jason Abdo (1990-) makes news for refusing to fight in Afghanistan, saying "I don't believe I can involve myself in an army that wages war against Muslims. I don't believe I could sleep at night if I take part, in any way, in the the killing of a Muslim", and "Islam is much more peaceful and tolerant religion than it is an aggressive religion. I don't believe that Islam allows me to operate in any kind of warfare"; after going AWOL from Ft. Campbell, Ky. when child porno and bombmaking components are found in his belongings, and being caught trying to purchase guns in Killeen, Tex., on July 28 he is arrested for planning a jihadist attack on Ft. Hood, being found with explosives; on July 29 as he is leaving the courtroom where he freely admits his guilt, he shouts "Nidal Hasan Ft. Hood 2009". On Sept. 1 Hamid Karzai's brother Mahmoud Karzai calls for the U.S. to intervene to head off a meltdown of Kabul Bank, Afghanistan's biggest bank, which he is a major shareholder in, after which depositors throng its branches, causing Hamid on Sept. 2 to tell Afghans not to panic; on Sept. 7 Mahmoud Karzai's Kabul Bank assets are frozen. On Sept. 1 former British Labour PM (1997-2007) Tony Blair (1953-) releases his new memoir "A Journey"; on Sept. 3 he gives an interview on it, calling radical Islam the greatest threat facing the world, saying that after 9/11 he didn't understand it yet, but that its roots go far deeper than he thought, and "If they could, they would use nuclear, chemical or biological weapons" and kill 300K not just 3K, saying "This is actually more like the phenomenon of revolutionary Communism", and "It's the religious or cultural equivalent of it, and its roots are deep, its tentacles are long, and its narrative about Islam stretches far further than we think into even parts of mainstream opinion who abhor the extremism, but sort of buy some of the rhetoric that goes with it"; on Sept. 4 he holds the first public signing of his memoir in Dublin, Ireland, where protesters hurl shoes and eggs at him. On Sept. 4 Afghan Pres. Hamid Karazi announces the formation of a High Council for Peace to hold talks with the Taliban. On Sept. 11 Pres. Obama marks the 9th Anniv. of 9/11 at the Pentagon, giving a speech with the soundbyte "We define the character of our country", continuing his act of pretending Islamic jihad doesn't exist by calling al-Qaida "some small band of murderers", while vice-pres. Joe Biden attends services at Ground Zero which begin with a moment of silence at 8:46 a.m when the first plane hit the North Tower of the WTC, and First Ladies Michelle Obama and Laura Bush mark it at the Shanksville, Penn. Flight 93 Memorial Site; New York anti-mosque activists Robert Spencer and Pamela Geller of Stop the Islamization of Am. and the Freedom Defense Initiative lead 40K in a protest against the Ground Zero Mosque (Cordoba House) (Park51) in New York City, where Dutch politician Geert Wilders delivers his No Mosque Here Speech, with the soundbytes "A tolerant society is not a suicidal society", "We must draw the line so that New York, rooted in Dutch tolerance will never become New Mecca", and "We must not give a free hand to those who want to subjugate us"; too bad, the already-subjugated major media skunk it despite giving unlimited publicity to the 1-man band Pastor Terry Jones; N.J. Transit worker Derek Fenton bravely burns pages from his Quran at Ground Zero, and is taken away by the pigs for questioning, then released, two days later getting fired, after which the ACLU takes up his cause, getting his job back with damages and lost wages by Apr. 2011; six men from Gateshead, Tyneside, England are later arrested for filming themselves burning Qurans on 9/11. On Sept. 14 a panel of U.S. nat. security experts releases a report saying that Pres. Obama is abandoning the U.S. to Muslim Sharia by his policy of delinking Islam to terrorism et al., threatening subversion of the U.S. Constitutional govt. On Sept. 18 elections in Afghanistan are attacked by the Taliban with 739 attacks as 2.5K candidates incl. 400 women run for the 249 seats of the lower house; the results are announced on Oct. 8. On Sept. 19 Pres. Obama makes his first appearance in a church since Easter Sun. at St. John's Episcopal Church in Washington, D.C.; it later is revealed that the church also invited Jerusalem-born Muslim guest speaker Dr. Ziad J. Asali (1942-), 2003 founder of the Am. Task Force on Palestine, which promotes a 2-state solution, with Asali known as the official U.S. delegate to the funeral of Yasser Arafat; ask the PC media why they tried to cover it up, although Obama left before he spoke; meanwhile his moderate Repub. point man Colin Powell appears on NBC's "Meet the Press", calling all the talk of his secret Muslim leanings and foreign birth "nonsense", saying "Let's not go down low... Let's attack him on policy, not nonsense." On Sept. 21 a U.S. Army Black Hawk heli crashes in Zhari District in Zabul Province in S Afghanistan, killing nine coalition service members, becoming the deadliest coalition heli crash since 2006, and bringing the yearly death total to 529 (2.1K since the start of the war), making it the deadliest year of the war. On Sept. 30 Pakistan cuts a key NATO supply route for its forces in Afghanistan after a NATO aircraft crosses into Pakistani airspace to fight Afghan rebels, and kills three Pakistani troops; despite a U.S. apology, they refuse to reopen it; on Oct. 1 militants attack NATO fuel convoys in Pakistan, burning 27 tankers - Obama's foreign policy is coming apart?

On Oct. 4, 2010 former senior U.N. official Antonio Maria Costa claims that Taliban sleeper cells have been set up inside Afghan police and army forces, and are waiting for orders to strike. On Oct. 10 U.K. aid worker Linda Norgrove (b. 1974) is killed by the Taliban in Afghanistan during a rescue attempt by U.S. forces after being held hostage since Sept. 26. On Oct. 12 a Nat. Air Cargo cargo plane crashes outside Kabul, Afghanistan, killing six Filipinos, one Indian, and a Kenyan. On Oct. 20 NATO officials announce that U.S. and Afghan forces have been routing the Taliban in Kandahar Province in recent weeks. On Oct. 23 the New York Times reveals that Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzai has been receiving bagfuls of cash from Iranian ambassador Feda Hussein Maliki via Karzai's chief of staff Umar Daudzai. On Oct. 23 four Taliban suicide bombers dressed in burqas attack the main U.N. compound in Herat in W Afghanistan, but score no casualties before they are killed. On Oct. 24 Afghanistan announces its first TV soap opera The Secrets of This House. On Oct. 25 a bomb planted on a motorcycle explodes at the gate of the Sufi Farid Shakar Ganj Shrine in Pak Pattan, Pakistan (125 mi. W of Lahore), killing five.

On Nov. 5, 2010 a combined Afghan-coalition forces captures the Haqqani terrorist network's shadow gov. for the Spera district of Khost Province in Afghanistan. On Nov. 6 leading U.S. Senate Repub. Lindsey Graham of S.C. says that the U.S. should consider "neutering" Iran's navy and air force if it doesn't stop trying to get nukes, adding that a surgical strike on nuclear facilities would bring military retaliation on U.S. forces in Afghanistan, and is probably already too late anyway. On Nov. 16 Pres. Obama awards U.S. Army SSgt. Salvatore Giunta the Medal of Honor, becoming the first for the Afghanistan War, and the first awarded since the Vietnam War. On Nov. 19 U.S. officials announce that the military is sending its first contingent of heavily-armored battle tanks to Afghanistan. On Nov. 20 Taliban suicide bombers in bicycles kill four and wound 31 in Mehtar Lam, E Afghanistan. On Nov. 22 it is revealed that talks being held for months by the Afghan govt. with Taliban leader Mullah Akhtar Muhammad Mansour were actually being held with an imposter. On Nov. 24 Pakistani federal minister Maulana Attaur Rehman calls the Taliban "true followers" of Islam, sparking controversy. On Nov. 27 U.S. forces have been in Afghanistan one day longer than the Soviet Union when it completed its 1989 withdrawal. On Nov. 29 an Afghan border policeman kills six U.S. servicemen during a training mission near the Pakistani border. In Nov. the U.S. loses 45 troops killed in Afghanistan, the deadliest Nov.in the 9-year Afghanistan War.

On Dec. 3, 2010 Pres. Obama makes a surprise holiday visit to Afghanistan to join the Taliban, er, to visit the troops at Bagram Air Base, telling them that we're "tired of playing defense"; he talks with Hamid Karzai only by phone. On Dec. 3 U.S. Gen. David Petraeus addresses his troops at Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan, and pisses-off Afghans with a statement that corruption has been a part of their history and culture for "however long this country has probably been in existence". On Dec. 6 two Islamic suicide bombers in the Mohmand Agency in NW Pakistan near the Afghan border kill 50 and wound 100. On Dec. 9 a U.N. report urges Afghanistan to protect women's rights and give up child marriage, honor killings, and the giving away of girls to settle disputes. On Dec. 11 a roadside bomb planted by the Taliban in Khan Neshin District of Helmand Province, Afghanistan kills 15 civilians; meanwhile a shootout with NATO troops kills seven, causing 500 to gather in Paktia to shout "Death to Americans". On Dec. 16 a White House Review of Pres. Obama's Afghan War Strategy is released, which concludes that it is "showing progress", but that "the challenge remains to make our gains durable and sustainable". On Dec. 16 U.S. Predator drones strike the Khyber Agency in Pakistan for the first time in almost six years, killing seven Taliban members. On Dec. 24 Taliban insurgents launch coordinated assaults in NW Pakistan, killing 11 soldiers and 24 militants; on Dec. 25 a woman throws a hand grenade at a crowd and then blows up in their midst at a U.N. food distribution center in Bajaur Agency (near Khar in NW Pakistan near the Afghan border), killing 45 and injuring 70, becoming the first female suicide bomber in Pakistan; Pres. Obama calls it "outrageous" and "an affront to the people of Pakistan".

In 2011 the Afghan drug war begins failing as opium prices soar and the allies focus on the Taliban not opium farmers. U.S. aid to the Middle East: Afghanistan: $3.9B, Pakistan: $3.1B, Israel: $3B, Egypt: $1.5B ($63B since 1948). On Jan. 1 three U.S. missile strikes in the Khyber tribal region near the Afghan border kill 54 alleged militants during a meeting. On Jan. 7 a suicide bomber in a public bathhouse in Spin Boldak in S Afghanistan on the Pakistani border kills 17 and wounds 20+ washing for weekly prayers. On Jan. 7 hundreds of protesters in Kabul accuse Iran of stopping fuel tanks from crossing the border into Afghanistan. On Jan. 10 U.S. vice-pres. Joe Biden makes an unannounced trip to Kabul to discuss Obama admin. strategy, saying that U.S. troops will stay beyond 2014 if the Afghans want them to. On Jan. 14 Afghan education minister Farooq Wardak announces that the Taliban is no longer opposed to female education, and is putting away the face acid. On Jan. 20 Birmingham imam Shaykh Asrar Rashid tells Muslims not to fight in the British armed forces due to their presence in Iraq and Afghanistan, and calls Queen Elizabeth II a "disgusting woman" for knighting writer Salman Rushdie. On Jan. 28 the German parliament votes to extend Germany's military mission in Afghanistan by one year despite polls showing the war's unpopularity. On Feb. 5 British Special Forces seize a shipment of 48 Iranian rockets in Nimruz Province, S Afghanistan en route to the Taliban. On Feb. 7 Afghan Red Cross activist Said Musa (1965-) is sentenced to death for converting to Christianity; he can only save himself by reconverting to Islam. On Feb. 18 an Afghan soldier turns jihadist in Pul-e-Khumri and fires on German troops, killing three and wounding six. On Feb. 18 Hillary Clinton expresses the hope that military action will split the Taliban from al-Qaida, laying the groundwork for a political solution in Afghanistan. On Feb. 21 U.S. Gen. David H. Petraeus stinks himself up with a comment that Afghans caught up in a coalition attack in NE Afghanistan may have burned their own children to exaggerate civilian casualties. On Mar. 3 Pres. Obama expresses "deep regret" over a NATO airstrike that killed nine Afghan boys in the Pech Valley in Kunar Province on Mar. 1. On Mar. 14 (2 p.m.) a suicide bomber in Kunduz Province in N Afghanistan kills 33 and wounds 42, most of them volunteers trying to enroll in the nat. army. On Mar. 25 after being criticized for refusing to help the NATO mission in Libya, the German Bundestag votes to broaden the German mission in Afghanistan. On Mar. 25 the Asia Times reports that Osama bin Laden was recently spotted in the Hindu Kish Mts. of Pakistan-Afghanitan; meanwhile Al-Qaida in Libya steals some SAMs from an arsenal in Libya. On Mar. 27 Taliban fighters abduct 50 off-duty Afghan policemen in an ambush in the Chapa Dara district of NE Kunar Province. In Mar. the U.S. Army is exposed for its Afghanistan Kill Team that posed for photos of murdered civilians. On Apr. 1 after reports that Christian pastor Terry Jones burned a Quran in Fla. in Mar., a mob of enraged Muslims in Mazar-i-Sharif, Afghanistan turns violent, killing eight at a U.N. operational center, beheading two of them, after which Jones calls on the U.N. to take "immediate action" against Muslim nations to hold them accountable for the deaths, urging them to "alter the laws that govern their countries to allow for individual freedoms and rights, such as the right to worship, free speech and to move freely without fear of being attacked or killed"; instead, Pres. Obama extends condolences to the families of the murdered, and calls desecration of the Quran "an act of extreme intolerance and bigotry"; on Apr. 2 the Muslims continue their rampage in Kandahar, killing 10 and wounding 83, causing U.S. gen. David Petraeus to condemn Jones, calling Quran burning "hateful", "intolerant", and "extremely disrespectful", adding "we condemn it in the strongest manner possible"; a 2nd and 3rd day of rage sees more marches and mayhem, followed by a 4th and 5th; meanwhile officials in Pakistan send a letter to Interpol demanding the arrest of Jones for his "violent crime", and U.S. Sens. Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and Lindsay Graham (R-S.C.) call for Quran burning to be criminalized, with Graham uttering the soundbyte "Free speech is a great idea, but we're in a war." On Apr. 7 the Taliban attack a police compound in Kandahar, Afghanistan, killing six Afghan security personnel, who kill four Taliban jihadis; the use of an ambulance by the attackers is later lamented by the Taliban, who promise an investigation and that it won't happen again. On Apr. 16 a suicide bomber in an Afghan military uniform kills five NATO and four Afghan soldiers at Forward Operating Base Gamberi in Laghman Province, E Afghanistan. On Apr. 19 a mill outside Kabul, Afghanistan that recycles worn-out Qurans into toilet paper draws an angry stone-throwing mob of 1K, causing the govt. to arrest three and shut it down. On Apr. 20 U.S. Adm. Mike Mullen is interviewed on Pakistani TV, accusing Pakistan's spy agency of supporting the Hawwani network of Islamic militants in Afghanistan, who are killing U.S. and NATO troops. On Apr. 25 a daring jailbreak by the Taliban in Kandahar, Afghanistan sees 488 escape in a tunnel that took 5 mo. to dig. On Apr. 27 an Afghan Air Corps pilot gets in an argument with nine Am. trainers at Kabul Airport, then leaves, returns with a rifle and methodically slaughters them. On Apr. 27 two Christian Afghan asylum seekers, Ahmed Faizi and Ali Hussani are deported from the U.K. despite fears that they will be killed for apostasy by the Taliban or other Muslims. On Apr. 29 a Biannual Report to Congress on the Afghanistan War claims that the 2009 surge has produced "tangible security progress".

On May 1, 2011 a 12-y.-o. suicide bomber kills three incl. a district council head in Shaken Ditrict of Paktika Province, Afghanistan on Day One of the Taliban's spring offensive. On May 1 (23:40 p.m. EDT) (12:40 a.m. local time) 66 years after the announcement of Adolf Hitler's death) Pres. Obama announces that pesky al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden (b. 1957) was killed by 23 U.S. Navy SEALs, an interpreter, and a tracking dog named Cairo in Operation Neptune Spear around 3:30 p.m. EDT in a $200K (20M rupee) 10-bedroom 3K sq. ft. mansion compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan ("City of Pines", founded as a British garrison town in the 1840s and named after deputy commissioner Maj. James Abbott) in the Hazara district of the NW Frontier Province 31 mi. NE of Islamabad and 93 mi. E of Peshawar, located only a few hundred yards from the elite Kakul Military Academy, the Pakistani equivalent of West Point or Sandhurst; the town is HQ of a brigade of the 2nd Div. of the Northern Army Corps, and home to many retired officers; the $1M mansion built in 2006 is surrounded by 18 ft. walls topped with barbed wire (an ISI safe house?); in Aug. the U.S. got a tip about the mansion by tracking his personal couriers; Osama moved there in 2006 after U.S. drones drove him out of the mountains?; the CIA set up a spy house nearby to watch, and kept it secret from the Pakistani govt.; fabled Seal Team Six stages Operation Neptune's Spear with two special ops super-secret stealth helis and an unmanned drone; one heli hard-lands in the compound after mechanical failures; four are killed besides bin Laden, incl. his oldest son Hamza, a female used as a shield, courier Abu Ahmed al-Kuwaiti (only one to return fire) and his brother; the first shot at bin Laden misses, and he shoves a wife at the SEALS before being killed; four of his children and two wives are arrested, and his computer disks captured (the original al-Qaida or database?); on May 6 al-Qaida and the Taliban confirm bin Laden's death, promise retaliation; Yemen praises bin Laden's killing, while the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas condemn it; Jordan says that it hopes Osama's death will end the "terror era"; in Nov. 2011 Navy Seal cmdr. Chuck Pfarrer pub. a book about the mission, saying that bin Laden was killed within 90 sec. of entering his home, only 12 bullets were fired, and they would have captured him if he had surrendered; the Pakistani govt. is not officially involved in the operation although it is suspected they helped locate the compound and knew of it, with elite Pakistani Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) kept out of the loop on suspicion they were on bin Laden's side; hundreds flock to Ground Zero to cheer his death; the intel community warns of possible retaliatory attacks; the first of five nat. security meetings about the compound was held on Mar. 14, and the attack was originally authorized in Mar. as a B2 stealth bomber strike, but Obama changed his mind since he wanted evidence that bin Laden was dead; bin Laden's Yemeni former teenie wife Amal Ahmed Abdulfattah (1983-) tries to protect him by rushing the SEALs and is shot in the leg, then is left behind when there is no room on the only remaining heli; the news causes U.S. financial markets to surge; on May 1 Pres. Obama gives a Speech on Osama bin Laden, issuing the soundbyte "Justice has been done"; too bad, he repeats his soundbyte "The United States is not and never will be at war with Islam", and adds the soundbyte "Bin Laden was not a Muslim leader, he was a mass murderer of Muslims. Indeed, al-Qaida slaughtered scores of Muslims in many countries including or own, so his demise should be welcomed by all who believe in peace and human dignity" (he should know, he's a true Muslim?); also "As we have stated repeatedly since the 9/11 terror attacks, bin Laden never represented Muslims or Islam"; on May 2 Obama adds that "This is a good day for America", adding "The world is safer. It is a better place because of the death of Osama bin Laden. Today we are reminded that as a nation, there's nothing we can't do when we put our shoulders to the wheel, when we work together. And we remember the sense of unity that defines us as Americans"; on May 4 Obama ends speculation by announcing that he won't release bin Laden's death photo, saying he has been ID'd by his wife and children and doesn't want to stir Muslim anger, "That's not who we are", "We don't need to spike the football"; an NBC Poll reveals that 64% agree with his decision; under Osama bin Laden's leadership, al-Qaida was responsible for 10K deaths and injuries in a dozen years; bin Laden's clothing had two phone numbers sewn into it, along with 500 Euros; on Obama's orders his body is quickly (within 24 hours of death) buried in the North Arabian Sea after ritual burial rites in accordance with Islamic practice, incl. the reading of Quran Sura 1 and its curse on Jews and Christians, despite Obama claiming he isn't a real Muslim, and despite Sunni doctrine that it's a "sin"; devout Muslims begin calling the site the "Martyr's Sea"; the quick disposal raises suspicions that it's all a hoax to save Obama's presidency despite govt. claims of DNA verification; on May 5 archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams say that the killing of unarmed bin Laden left a "very uncomfortable feeling"; on May 5 Pakistani army chiefs eat crow, er, warn the U.S. not to violate Pakistani sovereignty or face "the direst consequences", and call for cuts in U.S. military personnel inside the country, which doesn't stop the U.S. from staging a predator drone strike in NW Pakistan on May 6 that kills eight Talibani; analysis of the captured material from his compound shows that bin Laden was considering an attack on U.S. commuter trains on the 10th anniv. of 9/11; on May 6 Pres. Obama tells cheering solders of the 101st Airborne Div. at Ft. Campbell, Ky., awarding the Pres. Unit Citation to SEAL Team Six, calling them "the finest small fighting force in the history of the world", and shaking the hand of the lucky SEAL who killed bin Laden, uttering the soundbyte "We're making progress in our major goal... of disrupting and dismantling, anid we are going to ultimately defeat al-Qaida. We have cut off their head and we will ultimately defeat them"; meanwhile the U.S. Congress gets pissed-off at the complicity of the Pakistan govt. and prepares a list of sanctions incl. cutting aid; the initial lead of bin Laden's courier's nickname came from Khalid Sheikh Mohammed after waterboarding, causing the debate on waterboarding to resume; on May 7 the CIA releases photos and five videos found in bin Laden's compound showing him preening while shooting propaganda films, describing him as thinking of himself as a "head coach" to al-Qaida; on May 8 Pakistan's ambassador to the U.S. promises that "heads will roll" as Pakistan investigates how bin Laden could hide for years in his country, and also promises "zero tolerance"; on May 9 Pakistani PM Yousuf Raza Gilani calls bin Laden's killing "indeed justice done", but warns against any more unilateral strikes, saying they will be met with "full force"; it is revealed that after 9/11 the U.S. and Pakistan struck a secret deal to permit the U.S. to hunt and kill bin Laden on Pakistani soil; on May 11 the U.S. Senate Armed Forces Committee is allowed to view photos of dead bin Laden; a stash of porno is found in bin Laden's computer drives; on May 17 U.S. Sen. Majority Leader (D-Nev.) Harry Reid says that the U.S. needs a "good relationship" with Pakistan, and now "isn't the time to start flexing our muscles"; Pakistani army chief Gen. Ashfaq Parvez Kayani faces a colonel's revolt by the 11-man Corps Commanders for letting the U.S. raid happen; Calif. diver Bill Warren announces plans to spend $400K searching for bin Laden's body; Pakistan arrests the CIA informants who helped locate Obama, causing deputy CIA dir. Michael J. Morrell to rate Pakistan's cooperation with the U.S. on counterterrorism operations a 3 on a scale of 1-10. On May 9 NATO announces that it has significantly weakened the Taliban insurgency by capturing or killing thousands of militants in Afghanistan in the past 3 mo. On May 10 hundreds of Taliban militants launch a large-scale attack on Afghan police near Parun, Afghanistan. On May 11 NATO forces capture several suspected insurgents in Kandahar, Afghanistan. On May 13 the Pakistan Parliament holds a 10-hour session and decides that all U.S. incursions incl. drone strikes must end or it will impede free passage of NATO materials headed for Afghanistan. On May 17 mixed-up Pakistan ground forces exchange fire with a NATO heli in Datta Khel near the Afghan border, with Pakistan claiming that the heli attack their checkpoint; meanwhile Pakistan announces the arrest of a senior al-Qaida operative. On May 17 a Pew Poll shows low confidence in Pres. Obama by world Muslims, with the highest being Indonesia, at 63%, and the lowest being Turkey, at 14%; Palestinian Territories: 15%, Jordan: 25%, Pakistan: 16%, Lebanon: 55%, Egypt: 27%. On May 18 violence in Afghanistan in Taloqan in Takhar Province and other locations kills 28. On May 20 a suicide vest strapped to a 12-y.-o. boy in Nooristan, Afghanistan prematurely explodes, killing him along with several other insurgents, causing the Afghan Nat. Intel Directorate to detain 100 other boys 12-17 for their safety. On May 21 a suicide bomber in an Afghan military uniform detonates inside the main military hospital in Kabul, Afghanistan, killing six medical students. On May 21 Taliban militants blow up a tanker carrying oil for NATO forces in Afghanistan in the Landi Kotal area of Pakistan's Khyber tribal region; a secondary explosion kills 15 trying to siphon fuel; another bomb damages 14 tankers in a nearby town. On May 23 Afghanistan reports that Taliban leader Mullah Mohammad Omar has been killed in Pakistan while in the custody of the Pakistani ISI; they deny it. On May 24 a roadside bomb in Kandahar, Afghanistan kills 10 road workers and injures 28. On May 25 the Taliban kills Khan Mohammad, head of the Porak girls' school in Logar Province, Afghanistan. On May 29 a NATO air strike in Helmand Province, Afghanistan inadvertently hits two civilian homes, killing two women and 12 children. On May 31 Afghan pres. Hamid Karzai issues an ultimatum to NATO to stop air strikes on Afghan homes, warning them that if they don't then the Afghan people will drive them out as occupying enemy forces, warning that if they continue "We will be forced to take unilateral action".

On June 2, 2011 200 Taliban militants dressed in Afghan military uniforms cross the border and ambush a security checkpoint in Upper Dir, Pakistan, killing 25 Pakistani troops. On June 15 U.S. Muslim soldier Pfc. Naser Abdo (1990-), who was approved as a conscientious objector to the war in Iraq and Afghanistan is charged with possession of child porno. On June 16 Pakistan lobbies for membership in the China-dominated Shanghai Cooperation Org., and urges Afghanistan to join also. On June 16 al-Qaida announces that former #2 Ayman al-Zawahiri is now #1, causing the U.S. to announce that they will hunt him down and kill him like they did Osama bin Laden; al-Qaida announces that it will "never recognize any legitimacy for the alleged" state of Israel". On June 16 the Taliban warns Prince Harry that if he is captured in Afghanistan on his 2nd tour of duty next year, he will be shown no mercy and will be "destroyed". On June 17 the U.S. Conference of Mayors introduces a resolution calling for a quicker end to the Afghan War and a speedier withdrawal of troops, becoming their first anti-war resolution since the Vietnam War. On June 18 Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzai acknowledges that the Afghan and U.S. govts. have been holding talks with the Taliban; meanwhile Taliban suicide attacks in Kabul kill nine. On June 19 Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzai accuses U.S.-led NATO troops of remaining in the country "for their own national interests", causing outgoing U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan Karl Eikenberry warns that the U.S. people are growing weary of being viewed as occupiers, saying "My people in turn are filled with confusion and they grow weary of our effort here." On June 21 (eve.) Pres. Obama gives a Speech on Afghanistan titled "The Way Forward in Afghanistan", saying that he will withdraw 33K troops by the end of Aug. 2012 in time for the pres. election season, starting with 5K in July and 5K by the end of 2011; "This decade of war has caused many to question the nature of America's engagement around the world. When threatened, we must respond with force, but when that force can be targeted, we need not deploy large armies overseas. We stand not for empire, but for self-determination"; his own top military advisers are against his plan, and NATO doesn't plan on turning over the war to the Afghan army until the end of 2014. On June 25 a car bomb in a hospital in Logar Province, Afghanistan kills 27 and injures 52. On June 25 six Taliban militants, some of them in burqas, incl. a husband-wife pair detonated in a police station in Kolachi, NW Pakistan, killing 10 policemen. On June 28 (night) a Taliban suicide attack at the Intercontinental Hotel in Kabul sees six attackers storm it during a conference of Afghan provincial govs. and go through the rooms targeting the 300 Afghans and foreigners staying there, killing six until they are killed, showing that they can get the Yankee infidels where they live. On June 29 French journalists Herve Ghesquiere and Stephane Taponier are released, becoming the longest-held Western hostages in Afghanistan; they were kidnapped on Dec. 30, 2009 in Kapisa NE of Kabul. On June 30 (4 p.m.) a bus strikes a Taliban IED in Khash Rod District in the SW Nimroz Province of AFghanistan, killing 20 civilians.

On July 5, 2011 an Azerbaijani tanker plane crashes in Afghanistan en route from Baku to Bagram Air Base, killing nine crew. On July 12 Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzai's half-brother Ahmed Wali Karzai, head of the Kandahar provincial council is assassinated by police official Sardar Muhammad at his home in S Afghanistan, leaving a power vacuum in S Afghanistan; the Taliban claims responsibility, calling it "one of our biggest achievements"; on July 14 his funeral is hit by another suicide bomber, killing four incl. Kandahair's chief cleric. On July 16 an Afghan army soldier kills a NATO soldier near Lashkar Gah in S Afghanistan, which is scheduled to be one of the first places NATO will hand security control to Afghan forces. On July 22 a NATO-U.S. strike on a Haqqani Network training camp in Sar Rowzah District in Paktika Province, E Afghanistan kills 80. On July 25 the Taliban shoots down a NATO Chinook heli near the Nangalam Base in the Pech River Valley in E Afghanistan. On July 27 a Taliban suicide bomber with an exploding turban assassinates Kandahar, Afghanistan mayor Ghulam Haider Hamidi (b. 1946); meanwhile top U.S. cmdr. Navy SEAL Adm. Eric T. Olson says that al-Qaida has been bloodied and is "nearing its end", with the killing of Osama bin Laden being a near-fatal blow, and the Arab Spring proving that the Muslim World doesn't need it to overthrow Muslim dictators, although a new gen. of militants can make it necessary for special ops to fight them for a decade. On July 28 the Obama admin. accuses Iran of a "secret deal" with al-Qaida to provide money, recruits, and transit for attacks in Afghanistan and Pakistan, saying "This network serves as the core pipeline through which al-Qaida moves money, facilitators and operatives from across the Middle East to South Asia"; the U.S. Treasury Dept. indicts six members incl. Ezedin Abdel Aziz Khalil, Atiya Abd al-Rahman, Salim Hasan Khalifa Rashid al-Kuwari, Abdallah Ghanim Mafuz Muslim al-Khaar, and Ali Hassan Ali al-Ajmi; Treasury spokesman David S. Cohen says "Iran is the leading state sponsor of terrorism in the world today."

On Aug. 6, 2011 (a.m.) a U.S. twin-rotor Ch-47 Chinook heli is shot down in Wardack Province in E Afghanistan by the Taliban, killing all 38 aboard incl. five Army troops, seven Afghan commandos and their interpreter, three AF controllers, and 22 Navy SEALs of the 300-member bin Laden-killing Team 6, becoming the largest U.S. military loss since the Jan. 2005 heli crash in Anbar Province; on Aug. 6 a bomb hits a convoy of NATO supply tankers in Peshawar, Pakistan, destroying 16; on Aug. 9 Pres. Obama makes a surprise visit to Dover AFB to pay his respects to the heroes; on Aug. 10 U.S. special forces claim to hunt down and kill the Taliban cmdr. and shooter responsible for the heli attack; the SEAL raid on Osama bin Laden was a fake because he had been dead for years, and Obama gave the Taliban the info. and weapons needed to assassinate the SEALs who went on the raid to silence them? On Aug. 14 six suicide bombers storm a provincial governor's compound in Charikar, Afghanistan (50 mi. N of Kabul), killing 22. On Aug. 19 on the anniv. of Afghan independence from Britain in 1919 Taliban suicide bombers attack the British Council in Kabul, Afghanistan, killing eight; meanwhile a turban bomber in Helmand Military Corps Center wounds three policeman. On Aug. 19 a Ramadan suicide bombing at a mosque in Ghundi, NW Pakistan in the Khyber tribal region near the Afghan border kills 48 and injures scores; they were trying to get anti-Taliban elders. On Aug. 29 Afghan and coalition security forces kill and capture multiple insurgents in a Haqqani terrorist network attack cell in E Afghanistan.

On Sept. 3, 2011 Iranian pres. Madman Imadinnajacket meets with Qatari emir Hamad bin Jassem al-Thani, during which the emir gives him a request by Pres. Obama to obtain his consent to maintaining 15K troops in Iraq for another two years, along with a request to stop hostile operations against U.S. forces in Iraq and Afghanistan, to which Madman replies that if Syria is attacked, "the first missile will fall on you." On Sept. 11 an Islamist suicide truck bomber at a NATO base in Wardak Province in C Afghanistan kills four civilians and injures 77 troops, becoming the worst suicide bombing in the Afghan war; the same province where the Navy SEALs heli was shot down in July. On Sept. 20 after being lured by a false offer of a Taliban peace offer, former Afghan pres. Burhanuddin Rabbani (b. 1940), head of the Afghan high peace council is assassinated by a Taliban (Haqqani Network?) suicide turban bomber in Kabul, causing Pres. Obama and Afghan pres. Hamid Karzai to issue a joint condolence statement at the U.N., and claim it won't set peace talks back. On Sept. 20 the Obama admin. announces that it has sharply warned Pakistan to cut ties with the Miranshah-based Taliban Haqqani Network in the tribal region along the Afghan border (which it blames for the Sept. 13 attack on the U.S. embassy in Kabul) and help eliminate its leaders, else the U.S. will act unilaterally. On Sept. 20 four U.S. Marines are killed in an ambush in Ganjgal, Afghanistan. On Sept. 25 (eve.) an Afghan employed by the U.S. govt. kills one American and wounds another in a CIA office in Kabul. On Sept. 29 the U.S. Treasury Dept. announces sanctions against brothers Faizullah and Malik Noorzai from Afghanistan for raising millions for the Taliban. On Sept. 30 Afghanistan holds Sound Central, its first rock festival since 1975.

On Oct. 1, 2011 senior Haqqani Network leader in Afghanistan Haji Mali Khan, uncle of network leaders Siraj and Badruddin Haqqani is captured in Paktiya Province by a NATO-Afghan operation. On Oct. 9 U.S. special rep for Pakistan and Afghanistan Marc Grossman admits that 19K Pakistani civilians have been killed in terrorist attacks since 2003. On Oct. 14 Ahmed (Saif) Omar Abdul Rahman, son of Blind Sheikh Omar Abdul Rahman is killed by a U.S. airstrike in Afghanistan. On Oct. 15 an Islamist suicide attack at the Provincial Reconstruction Team base in Panjshir, Uzbekistan kills two security guards; on Oct. 17 the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU) claims credit, and also claims that they had help from the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (Taliban). On Oct. 16 U.S. forces announce that they have been taking increasing rocket fire from Pakistan in the past month; officers allege that the jihadists are operating in sight of the Pakistani military. On Oct. 22 Afghan Ores. Hamid Karzai announces that if the U.S. invades Pakistan, Afghanistan will support Pakistan not the U.S. On Oct. 28 after advice by her Saudi attache Huma Abedin, U.S. state secy. Hillary Clinton announces that the U.S. is now ready to negotiate with Taliban leader Mullah Omar, and regards his involvement as crucial to peace prospects in Afghanistan. On Oct. 29 a Taliban (Haqqani Network?) suicide bomber rams his van into an armored NATO bus in Kabul, Afghanistan, killing 17, incl. five ISAF troops, becoming the deadliest attack on coalition forces in over 2 mo.; the Taliban claims that the bomber was a Kabul-born 23-y.-o. European Afgahan; meanwhile an Afghan soldier turns his weapons on Australian NATO soldiers in Nish, Kandahar Province, killing three. On Oct. 31 a 4-man Taliban suicide team attacks a U.N. HQ in Kandahar City, Afghanistan, killing five. On Oct. 31 the Jund Al-Khalifah (Soldiers of the Caliphate) based on the Afghan-Pakistan border claim credit for two bombings in the city of Atyrau in Kazakhstan in retaliation for banning the veil. In Oct. a total of 23 U.S. soldiers are killed in Afghanistan, making the war total 1,720.

On Nov. 4, 2011 U.S. Afghanistan cmdr. Gen. Peter Fuller is relieved by Internat. Security Assistance Force cmdr. Gen. John R. Alolen for making comments against pres. Hamid Karzai and calling his govt. "isolated from reality". On Nov. 7 the Taliban posts a message on its Web site celebrating the U.S. troop withdrawal as a big V, and calling the U.S. the "greatest enemy of Islam", mocking Pres. Obama's soundbyte that the U.S. is not and never will be at war with Islam. On Nov. 9 coalition forces defeat a massive assault by the Haqqani Network in Paktika Province, Afghanistan near the Pakistani border, killing 60-70 terrorists. On Nov. 11 U.S. Sgt. Calvin Gibbs (1985-) is sentenced to life in prison for encouraging his troops to kill three Afghan civilians; he cut fingers and yanked teeth from corpses to keep as trophies. On Nov. 16 a Loya Jirga (assembly of elders) called by Hamid Karzi to discuss the Afgan-U.S. Strategic Partnership Agreement is rejected by the Ittehad-e-Ulema Afghanistan alliance of orthodox clerics, who call for jihad against the U.S. and its allies, and urges other Muslim clerics to issue fatwas for jihad. On Nov. 25-26 (night) NATO helis and fighter jets attack two military outposts near the border in NW Pakistan, killing 24 Pakistani troops and injuring 13, further tanking U.S.-Pakistan relations, causing Pakistan to block supply routes for NATO troops in Afghanistan, after which the CIA calls off its drone campaign until ?.

On Dec. 5, 2011 after a request in Nov. 2010 by Afgan Pres. Hamid Karzai, a Conference on Afghanistan is held in Bonn, Germany. On Dec. 5 Iran downs a U.S. RQ-170 Sentinel spy drone in E Iran after it crosses the Afghanistan border; the Iranians work to reverse engineer it while Pres. Obama asks for it back. On Dec. 6 two attacks against Shiites in Kabul and Mazar-i-Sharif, Afghanistan kill 56 and wound 160+. On Dec. 9 a delegation of high-ranking Afghan military and plice visit Ground Zero, the Pentagon, and Camp Pendleton. On Dec. 15 the U.S. flag is lowered at Baghdad Internat. Airport in Iraq, marking the end of the 8-year fiasco, er, mission. On Dec. 25 (2:30 p.m. local time) a suicide bomber at a funeral ceremony in Taloqan, Takhar, Afghanistan kills 19+ civilians incl. MP Alhaj Mutalib Baig, and injures 50+. On Dec. 26 Iran signs an oil deal with Afghanistan to provide 1M tons beginning in 2012. On Dec. 30 a roadside bomb in Trinkot, Uruzgan, Afghanistan kills four civilians and injures one. In 2011 U.S. Army releases the Long Endurance Multi-Intelligence Vehicle (LEMV), an unmanned blimp-like spy ship that can hover at 20K ft. for up to three weeks, and is planned for deployment in Afghanistan.

On Jan. 8, 2012 a gunman in an Afghan army uniform opens fire on a group of Americans in Zabul Province, Afghanistan, killing one soldier and wounding another. On Jan. 9 an Afghan soldier fires a U.S. military personnel playing volleyball in Qalat, S Afghanistan, killing one and wounding three before being killed. On Jan. 12 Pissgate (Abu Ghraib II) (Abu Piss?) sees a video circulating on the Internet showing four U.S. Marines urinating on the corpses of Taliban fighters in Afghanistan, pissing off Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzai and bringing out the PC police, causing Marine Corps Commandant Gen. James F. Amos to appoint a 3-star gen. to investigate after Pres. Obama spokesmen Leon Panetta, Hillary Clinton et al. condemn it; the Marines are identified and prosecuted; meanwhile there is a groundswell of support for them since Talibanis are barbarians who do far worse to their enemies, incl. splashing acid in their faces - I thought Obama said that Talibanis are not true Muslims because they pervert the religion? On Jan. 12 a U.S. drone strike in Dogga, North Waziristan (near Miramsham) kills six militants. On Jan. 20 a Taliban-recruited gunman in an Afghan army uniform kills four French soldiers and wounds several others in Kapisa Province, Afghanistan, causing the French to suspend training operations and threaten to leave Afghanistan early; meanwhile on Jan. 19 a U.S. heli crash kills six U.S. Marines; the Afghan military is increasingly showing its contempt for all infidel soldiers? On Jan. 25 a combined Afghan-coalition security force kills several insurgents in Kot District, Faryab Province, Afghanistan during a search for a Taliban leader. On Jan. 26 a car bomb in Lashkar Gah, Helmand Province, Afghanistan targeting NATO aid workers kills three and wounds 31. On Jan. 30 Afghan authorities announce that after giving birth to a 3rd straight daughter and no sons, an Afghan woman was killed by her husband and mother-in-law a week earlier. On Feb. 1 Pakistan jets bomb militant positions in the Orakzai and Kurram Agency areas near the Afghanistan border, killing 31. On Feb. 1 the Times of London reports that a secret NATO report claims that the Pakistan-backed Taliban is set to regain control over Afghanistan when coalition forces leave. On Feb. 3 Taliban insurgents attack a Pakistani military outpost in Shidano Dand, Kurram Agency, Pakistan killing seven soldiers and 18 Taliban fighters; four Pakistani soldiers are captured. On Feb. 5 an explosion in Kandahar, Afghanistan kills 3+. On Feb. 8 U.S. drones kill 10 in Spalga, North Waziristan; another five are killed on Feb. 16. On Feb. 22 U.S. soldiers burn Islamic religious materials at Bagram AFB in Afghanistan, causing protests, causing U.S. Gen. John R. Allen to launch in inquiry, which only makes them more mad, with protests continuing until Feb. 27; on Feb. 22 the U.S. embassy in Kabul goes into lockdown; on Feb. 24 11+ are killed in more protests; on Feb. 25 two senior U.S. NATO officers are killed in the ministry of interior bldg. in Kabul, while four more are killed in protests in Kunduz; on Feb. 27 a suicide car bomber at Jalalabad Airport kills nine; on Mar. 2 the investigation reports that five U.S. service personnel were involved in an accidental Quran burning. On Mar. 11 the Kandahar Massacre sees amok U.S. soldier Staff Sgt. Robert Bales kill 16 civilians incl. 9 children in Panjawi District, Afghanistan near Kandahar, causing the Taliban to vow revenge, followed by student protests on Mar. 13; on Mar. 13 Taliban militants fire on an Afghan govt. delegation visiting the massacre site; on Mar. 14 the soldier is moved to Kuwait while U.S. defense secy. Leon Panetta arrives in Afghanistan to placate anger; the soldier's identity is withheld until Mar. 16. On Mar. 12 German chancellor Angela Merkel makes an unannounced visit to Afghanistan to see German troops, questioning the planned pullout by the end of 2014. On Mar. 16 a Turkish NATO heli crashes into a house on the outskirts of Kabul, Afghanistan, killing 14 incl. a woman and two children. On Mar. 25 a roadside bomb in Kandahar Province, Afghanistan kills six Afghan police, one U.S. soldier, and a translator in a joint Afghan-NATO convoy. On Mar. 26 a green-on-blue attack in Afghanistan sees an Afghan police officer kill two British soldiers before being killed. On Mar. 27 Afghan authorities foil alleged suicide bombings in Kabul, Afghanistan, arresting several people and seizing 11 suicide jackets. On Apr. 4 a suicide bomber in Faryab Province, Afghanistan kills 12+. On Apr. 6 a fuel tanker overturns in Panjwai, Afghanistan, killing seven civilians. On Apr. 8 the U.S.-Afghanistan Strategic Partnership Agrement is signed, giving Afghanistan more control over night raids effective July 4. On Apr. 11 two suicide bombers ram their vehicle into a govt. compound near Herat, Afghanistan, killing 15. On Apr. 15 Taliban militants launch multiple coordinated attacks in Kabul, Afghanistan and other cities to launch their spring offensive, killing two Afghan security personnel and 17 militants. On Apr. 17 Australian PM Julia Gillard announces that Australian troops will be withdrawn from Afghanistan by Dec. 31, 2013, a year earlier than planned. On May 26 British army capt. Stephen James "Steve" Healey (b. 1982) is KIA by an IED in Helmand Province, Afghanistan; meanwhile CNN announces that the NATO death toll in Afghanistan has reached 3K. On July 25 Taliban fighters in Kunar Province, Afghanistan fire a new generation Stinger missile at a U.S. Army CH-47 heli, but it lands safely and a U.S. gunship destroys the fighters; the missile id is traced to the CIA?

U.S. Gen. Joseph F. Dunford

On Feb. 10, 2013 U.S. Gen. John Allen is replaced by U.S. Marine Gen. Joseph F. Dunford as NATO cmdr. of the Internat. Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan (until ?), with Allen uttering the soundbyte "We are winning." On Feb. 12 (Lincoln's birthday) Pres. Obama delivers his 2013 State of the Union Address, promising to withdraw 34K troops (out of 66K) from Afghanistan within a year. On Feb. 24 Hamid Karzai gets uppity and orders U.S. special forces to leave Wardak Province within two weeks, claiming allegations of disappearances and torture of Afghan. On Feb. 24 3K Palestinians in Israeli jails stage a hunger strike in protest of the death of Arafat Jaradat (b. 1982). On Feb. 24 Muslim U.S. Rep. (D-Minn.) Keith Ellison visits Somalia, becoming the first by a member of Congress since ? On May 21 NATO begins equipment withdrawal from Afghanistan.

Ustad Mohammad Mohaqiq of Afghanistan

On June 18, 2013 NATO formally hands over command of security to Afghan forces; a suicide bomber attempts to kill Afghan Hazara politician Ustad Haji Mohammad Mohaqiq in W Kabul just before the ceremony (his 4th assassination attempt), killing three and injuring 20 incl. four guards; about 100K troops incl. 68K from the U.S. are set to withdraw by Dec. 31; on June 19 after the U.S. announces that it will meet with the Taliban, Afghan PM Hamid Karzai suspends security talks with the U.S. when the Taliban office in Qatar refused to drop the title "Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan". On Aug. 7 Pres. Obama addresses Marines at Camp Pendleton, Calif., telling them that the Afghanistan War has entered its final chapter. On Aug. 8 an explosion in a graveyard in Ghani Khel, Nangarhar, Afghanistan kills 10+ women. On Aug. 26 (6:30 a.m.) a Taliban suicide assault at the Afghan army base in Kapisa, Afghanistan kills two Taliban fighters and injures 10. On Aug. 29 an ambush by the Taliban in Farah Province, Afghanistan kills 15 Afghan policemen. On Aug. 30 a suicide bomber in a mosque in Kunduz Province, Afghanistan kills 20 incl. district chief Sheikh Sadruddin. On Sept. 2 militants attack a U.S. base in Torkham, Afghanistan near the Pakistan border, shutting down a supply road while losing three militants. On Sept. 4 Afghan pres. Hamid Karzai issues the soundbyte that the Taliban defames Islam by killing Muslim scholars and damaging mosques; on Sept. 5 (a.m.) the Shiite Shia Dashte Barche Mosque in W Kabul is attacked by Taliban fighters wearing police uniforms. On Sept. 8 the Taliban stages a car bomb and gun attack outside an Afghan intel office in Kabul, Afghanistan, killing four soldiers and wounding 80; meanwhile Afghan officials accuse NATO of killing civilians in an airstrike in E Afghanistan that kills 10+. Onu Sept. 9 Afghanistan declares the first Massoud Day in honor of Ahmad Shah Massoud, the martyred U.S. ally in the fight against the Taliban and al-Qaida. On Sept. 12 (night) gunmen attack a NATO oil tanker convoy in Soorab, Kalat, Pakistan, killing a driver and torching eight vehicles. On Sept. 13 (a.m.) a bomb at the U.S. consulate in Herat, Afghanistan kills three and injures 10. On Sept. 13 Pakistani sen. Mushahid Hussain Sayed announces that the U.S. and NATO will keep 20K troops in Afghanistan in nine bases. On Sept. 14 Turkish prosecutors in Adana indict six members of the al-Nusra Front and Ahrar ash-Sham for attempting to acquire sarin gas. On Sept. 15 9+ NATO fuel tankers headed for Afghanistan are destroyed by a blast in Quetta, Pakistan. On Sept. 18 (8:45 a.m.) two Taliban motorcycle gunmen kill senior Afghan election official Mohammad Amanullah then brag about it on Twitter. On Oct. 11 the U.N. Security unanimously votes to extend the NATO-led force mandate through 2014, probably the last extension. On Nov. 18 days before a meeting set by the country's elite to debate it, Afghan pres. Hamid Karzai rejects a key provision of the proposed U.S.-Afghan Security Pact, putting it in jeopardy; an Nov. 19 after Afghan pres. Hamid Karzai demands it as a condition for support, U.S. nat. security adviser Susan Rice announces that Pres. Obama won't make a written apology to the Afghan people for "mistakes" made, as John Kerry puts it in a phone call to AP. On Nov. 26 Afghan pres. Hamid Karzai gives an interview to Radio Free Europe, in which he claims that Pres. Obama told him: "The Taliban are not our enemies and we don't want to fight them." On Dec. 11 U.S. State Dept. and Pentagon experts testify before the House Foreign Affairs Committee, stunning members with their lack of basic knowledge of the cost of the war or lives lost on the battlefield.

On Apr. 15, 2014 the Washington Times reports that secret U.S. State Dept. assessments show that the Afghan govt. is woefully unprepared to govern after the U.S. withdraws its troops, and is in danger of collapsing.

U.S. Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl (1986-)

On May 1, 2014 a total of 19,793 U.S. service personnel have been wounded in the Afghanistan War since it began on Oct. 7, 2001, with 17,095 (86.4%) wounded on Pres. Obama's watch. On May 25 Pres. Obama makes a surprise visit to Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan for Memorial Day weekend, telling troops that they'll be out of the country by the end of the year as their presence will be brought to "a responsible end"; on May 27 he announces that he plans to keep 9.8K troops for training and to fight al-Qaida, pissing-off conservatives incl. Fox News journalist Charles Krauthammer, who calls it "an act of personal narcissism", retired USAF Gen. Michael Hayden, who utters the soundbyte that it's "fairy dangerous", and might lead to making Afghanistan look like Iraq, and Ariz. Repub. Sen. John McCain, who on May 28 utters the soundbyte that Obama is sending a signal to the Taliban and al-Qaida that amounts to "Hang on, we're leaving." On May 31 (10:30 a.m.) Sgt. Bowe Robert Bergdahl (1986-), the only U.S. POW in Afghanistan (since June 2009) is handed over by the Taliban in exchange for five Gitmo POWs sent to Qatar, pissing-off Congress at Pres. Obama for not consulting with them first and observing a 30-day waiting period, esp. since they already rejected the idea in 2011 and 2012; on June 2 the Afghan govt. protests the deal, arguing that it violates internat. law; Bergdahl converted to Islam in captivity under the name Abdullah, and declared jihad?; Bergdahl's Pashto-speaking (Muslim?) father Robert Bowe Berdahl, who grew a Taliban-style beard in sympathy for his son issues the Islamic war cry "Bismillah al-Rahman al-Rahim" (In the Name of Allah the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful"), causing Pres. Obama to smile?; daddy also tweeted that he wants all Taliban POWs freed to pay for all the Afghan children killed by the U.S., with the soundbyte: "God will repay for the death of every Afghan child, ameen."

U.S. Gen. Harold J. Greene (1959-2014)

On Aug. 5, 2014 an Afghan soldier being trained to take over for the U.S. opens fire at Camp Qargha W of Kabul, Afghanistan, killing U.S. 2-star gen. Harold J. "Harry" Greene (b. 1959), who becomes the highest-ranking U.S. officer killed in the Afghanistan War (begun 2001), and highest-ranking since the Vietnam War; 15 are injured incl. U.S. troops and a German brig. gen.; Greene was working for the British-run Marshall Fahim Nat. Defense U., whose first class graduates at the end of Aug. On Sept. 4-5 the Wales NATO Summit sees the 28 members acknowledge that their formal role in Afghanistan is coming to an end with an official declaration, and pledge to spend at least 2% of their GDPs on defense, approving a rapid response team to counter the Russian threat. On Sept. 30 new (since Sept. 29) Afghan pres. Ashraf Ghani signs the bilateral U.S.-Afghan Security Agreement, which continues past the end of the year, allowing 10K U.S. troops to remain. On Oct. 26 (Sun.) the U.S. and British close their last bases in Afghanistan, Camp Leatherneck and Camp Bastion. On Dec. 8 the U.S.-NATO Internat. Security Assistance Force (ISAF) Joint Command lowers its flag for the last time in Afghanistan after 13 years; the ISAF mission officially ends on Dec. 31, and will be replaced on Jan. 1 by Resolute Support, a narrow-mandate mission to train, advise, and assist the Afghan Nat. Security Forces. On Dec. 28 as a ceremony is held in Kabul, Pres. Obama issues a statement marking the end of the U.S. Afghanistan war, touching a 90% troop reduction on his watch, with the soundbyte: "For more than 13 years, ever since nearly 3,000 innocent lives were taken from us on 9/11, our nation has been at war in Afghanistan Now, thanks to the extraordinary sacrifices of our men and women in uniform, our combat mission in Afghanistan is ending, and the longest war in American history is coming to a responsible conclusion."

U.S. Army Spc. John M. Dawson (1992-2015)

On Jan. 1, 2015 the first day of the Afghan security takeover is marred by an Afghan army rocket attack on a wedding party in Lashkar Gah, Afghanistan, which kills 28 incl. many women and children; the Afghan govt. launches an investigation. On Jan. 5 a suicide car bomber hits an EU police vehicle in Kabul, Afghanistan, killing one passerby. On Jan. 25 (6 a.m.) a truck bombing in Kabul, Afghanistan injures two. On Jan. 26 the 5K-man anti-Taliban anti-ISIS Marg (Dari for death" army in Balkh Province, N Afghanistan announces its formation, visiting the provincial council and offering its services. On Jan. 29 (eve.) a Taliban member dressed in an Afghan military uniform stages an attack at the internat. airport in Kabul, Afghanistan, killing three U.S. contractors and injuring Afghan police cmdr. Maj. Gen. Haq Nawaz Haqyar; 2nd green-on-blue attack on Apr. 8. On Feb. 24 Afghan-born Am. Muslim Sohiel Omar Kabir and Philippine Muslim convert Ralph Deleon are sentenced to 25 years in prison for a plot to go on jihad and kill U.S. troops in Afghanistan et al. On Mar. 18 a suicide bomber wearing a burqa detonates in Kabul, Afghanistan, killing pro-Coalition Uruzgan Province police chief Matiullah Khan. On Mar. 19 27-y.-o. Afghan woman Farkhunda Malikzada (b. 1987) is stoned, beaten, and murdered by an angry mob for allegedly burning a Quran; all she really did was denounce the custodians of Shah-do Shamshira Shrine for selling amulets? On Mar. 24 Pres. Obama announces that 9.8K U.S. troops will remain in Afghanistan through the end of 2015. On Apr. 8 an Afghan soldier stages a green-on-blue attack on U.S. troops in Jalalabad, Afghanistan, injuring three before being killed; meanwhile U.S. Army Specialist John M. Dawson (b. 1992) becomes the first U.S. soldier to die in Afghanistan after the U.S. mission ended. On Apr. 10 (a.m.) a suicide car bombing in Jalalabad, Afghanistan injures several Afghans and U.S. troops. On Apr. 18 an ISIS suicide bomber on a motorcycle attacks a crowd gathered outside the new Kabul Bank branch in Jalalabad, Afghanistan, killing 35 and injuring 125, after which the Taliban denies responsibility and Afghan pres. Ashraf Ghani blames ISIS. On May 4 a Taliban attack on checkpoints in Badakhshan, Afghanistan kills 16 policemen. On May 18 Pakistani army spokesman Asim Bajwa announces an intel-sharing pact between Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and Afghanistan's Nat. Directorate of Security (NDS) to train NDS officials et al. On June 8 Krissie K. Davis (b. 1961) of Ala. becomes the 3rd U.S. military member to die in Afghanistan after the U.S. combat mission ended during an indirect fire attack at Bagram AFB. On June 12 (night) the Taliban ambushes police checkpoints in Musa Qala, Helmand Province, Afghanistan killing 20 and injuring 10 police officers. On June 22 (a.m.) explosions hit the Afghan Parliament as defense minister Massoom Stanekzai is being sworn-in, followed by several Taliban fighters, who fight it out with army special forces.

On Oct. 3, 2015 a U.S. air strike by an AC-130 gunship in Kunduz, Afghanistan accidentally hits a Doctors Without Borders hospital, killing 22 incl. by burning alive, causing them to call it a war crime, and the U.S. govt. to launch an investigation despite U.S. Afghanistan cmdr. Gen. John F. Campbell uttering the soundbyte that Afghan forces requested the air strike; on Oct. 6 Pres. Obama apologizes for the bombing. On Oct. 6 U.S. top Afghanistan cmdr. Army Gen. John F. Campbell recommends to Pres. Obama that U.S. troops remain in Afghanistan past the Dec. 2016 deadline. On Oct. 15 Pres. Obama announces that he plans to keep 9.8K troops in Afghanistan through most of 2016, keeping 5.5K when he leaves office in Jan. 2017, reneging on his campaign promise to end the war during his presidency, calling it a "modest but meaningful" extension of the U.S. military mission in Afghanistan; his generals recommended 11K not 5.5K. On Oct. 16 The New York Times pub. a map showing that the Taliban controls 35 and contests another 35 of Afghanistan's 398 districts.

On Jan. 10, 2016 Afghan peace process talks are held in Islamabad, Pakistan by reps from Pakistan, Afghanistan, the U.S., and China, focusing on the need for talks with the Taliban. On Jan. 11 coordinated Taliban suicide attacks in Jalalabad, Afghanistan are foiled by Afghan security forces; meanwhile a secret NATO report is leaked to Der Spiegel, revealing that the Afghan army is incapable of fighting the Taliban, with only 1 of 101 infantry battalions ready for battle, and 38 with "massive problems", incl. 10 with 600 soldiers each "not operational at all". On Jan. 29 the U.S. Special Inspector Gen. for Afghan Reconstruction (SIGFAR) releases a report that claims that Afghanistan is "even more dangerous than it was a year ago." On Feb. 11 Fox News reveals that a battalion of 500 U.S. Army infantrymen are being sent to the Helmand Province of S Afghanistan to fight the Taliban, becoming the first since the late 2014 pullout. On Mar. 2 U.S. Army Gen. John W. "Mick" Nicholson takes command of U.S.-NATO forces in Afghanistan from U.S. Army Gen. John F. Campbell. On May 18 the Afghan govt. signs a draft peace accord with Hizb-e-Islami, led by Gulbudding Hekmatyar, #2 militant group after the Taliban. On July 6 after citing the Taliban's threat, Pres. Obama announces a slowdown of troop withdrawal from Afghanistan, leaving about 8.5K troops at the end of the year after reducing the current force by 9.8K.

On Feb. 9, 2017 U.S. Gen. John Nicholson, cmdr. of U.S. forces in Afghanistan tells Senate Armed Services Committee chmn. Sen. John McCain "I believe we're in a stalemate" in Afghanistan.

On Mar. 8, 2017 an ISIS attack on the 400-bed Sardar Mohammad Daud Khan Hospital for wounded soldiers in Kabul, Afghanistan kills 30+ and injures 50+.




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