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Analysis Of The Battle Of Kamdesh In The Afghan War

1011 words - 4 pages

The Battle of Kamdesh was fought in Afghanistan during the Afghan War. It is an occurrence in the ongoing NATO campaign of the Operation Enduring Freedom since the year 2001. It was one of the bloodiest battles the USA forces engaged in during this campaign against the Taliban insurgents. The Taliban insurgents, assisted by local Nuristan militias, attacked Kamdesh, which is an American combat outpost, located deep in the Nuristan tribal Areas. They carried out a well-coordinated attack on the outpost, leading to a breach and an overrun of the post. This paper, seeks to analyze why, when, how, and what were the resulting impact of the battle.
The battle happened on October 3, 2009 at Keating, an American combat outpost, near the Kamdesh town in Nuristan province. Nuristan province of Afghanistan is located in the eastern part of the country and is largely inhabited by the Nuristan communities. They exist in four major groups, but are largely subdivided on the basis of religion, clans, and personal beliefs. It is a population of hostile people who vigorously resist foreign aggression and so would not tolerate America’s presence in their land. Their involvement in the attack of the Keating command post was inevitable and must have provided a lot of support, logistics, planning, fire power and command (Kelly, 2011).
The insurgents had arrived in the neighboring villages of the camp deep in the night and started grouping together with the Nuristan militia men. Their first step involved evicting the civilians in the village on an impending attack on the Keating combat outpost. Following analysis showed that the villagers might not have moved out of the area during the attack. The attack started at dawn when the insurgents opened fire, using light firearms, rockets and motor fire. The fire was intense, leading to breach of one of the base defense lines hence overrunning it. Fifty minutes into the battle, the insurgents had breached the perimeter wall and the main entrance, entering the base (Tapper, 2012).
The Afghan soldiers in the base, got frightened and ran away, leaving their area uncovered hence giving the insurgents a better ground to fight. This led to the American and Latvian military retreating to an inner confinement within the barracks. The insurgents set fire to the barracks and the buildings within it, leaving the only buildings occupied by the battled defending troops. The American soldiers managed to regroup and to drive the insurgents out of most of the outpost. Air support, which involved bombers, helicopters and the F-15E fighters, responded by bombing some insurgent held position, such as a local mosque, that they had taken and had mounted heavy weapons. As a result of intense aerial bombardments by the US air force, the insurgents started to lose ground and retreat by evening. Analysis after the attack showed that 8 Americans and 3 Afghan soldiers died 23 American and 10 Afghan soldiers were injured while...

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