January 31, 2010

Bracing for Afghanistan

With 29 deaths in January, US soldiers have suffered an unusually hot winter. 29 is the most since November 2009, which isn't too long ago, but considering that summer is supposed to be Taliban season, a bad January portends to a bloody future.

During January 2004, 2005, 2006, and 2007 the Taliban barely scored any kills on US troops. Deaths ticked up to 10 in 2008 and 25 in 2009, calm" before the storm that spiked monthly casualty rates past 70 multiple times.

Summer 2010 is looking to be worse.

Disinformation is also circulating in practically every report that US casualties are rising because of President Obama's surge. This is only true to an extent. Though more US soldiers statistically necessitate more deaths, they're in growing danger because the Taliban is growing stronger.

Not all of Obama's surge has reached Afghanistan, only a portion has hit the ground. Offensive operations have increased, but this trend started several years ago. Proportionately the Taliban does a decent job keeping pace with America's escalation. When US troops numbered 27,000 in 2008 the Taliban had recovered to 10,000.

Now US troops number 95,000 and the Taliban 25,000; its sophistication is also growing. Gathering storm clouds.

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