A significant enemy loss?


Reuters reported yesterday that a Taliban commander was killed in a fight with US Paratroopers and Afghan soldiers.  This positive news item amazingly makes the lede in a Reuters article before it reverts to the standard MSM template of gloom and doom concerning the US and Afghan casualty counts.  According to Reuters,

A U.S. military statement said Taliban commander Qari Amadullah was killed near Wazikhwa in eastern Afghanistan on Tuesday.  "Amadullah was believed to have commanded up to 50 Taliban fighters in the region and was thought to be in possession of a number of weapon systems to include rockets and rocket propelled grenades," it said.

Don't get me wrong. Getting rid of Taliban die—hards is a beautiful thing; and the more, the better.  Yet, what amounts to the killing of one enemy platoon leader gets a stunning assessment from U.S. Brigadier—General James G. Champion that,

"Killing this individual will significantly disrupt Taliban operations in the region."

In the region?  If this is the case, then we must be close to declaring a significant troop withdrawal from the country after the parliamentary elections next month, because we are optimistic that our 'cult of personality' strategy will be successful.  Unfortunately, our failure to acknowledge the fanatical determination and loyalty that permeates  the rank and file will further cloud our judgment on our military progress in the War on Terror.  Without further explanation, the overall operational impact of this enemy loss is but a small blip on the radar screen.

Douglas Hanson    8 13 05