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U.S. Launches Raid on Taliban Compounds

By Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Jan. 24, 2002 – U.S. forces raided two Taliban leadership compounds north of Kandahar, Afghanistan, Air Force Gen. Richard Myers told reporters today.

Myers, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said at a Pentagon press briefing that a Special Forces soldier wounded in the ankle by enemy fire was evacuated for care. U.S. troops detained 27 individuals in the raid and killed a number of the enemy, he said. U.S. forces are questioning those captured.

The general would not comment further as "a potential for further action" exists. U.S. Central Command officials said service members destroyed a large cache of weapons and ammunition at the site.

DoD officials said this type of raid would characterize the fighting ahead for U.S. and coalition forces in Afghanistan. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said there are concentrated pockets of Al Qaeda terrorists and Taliban fighters and called the pockets "not small."

"There are a lot more of these pockets," he said. "We are going to pursue them and we're going to keep at them until we get them." U.S. commanders in Afghanistan will decide when to go after these pockets, he said.

The quarry move around the rugged terrain of Afghanistan, he said. "We are finding them and we are engaging them with direct action either alone or with coalition forces or with Afghan forces," Rumsfeld said. "We are doing it systematically and you can expect it will continue for some time."

The raid brings the number of Taliban and Al Qaeda terrorists under U.S. control in Afghanistan to 297. All told, 455 detainees are under U.S. control.

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Related Sites:
DoD News Briefing - Secretary Rumsfeld and Gen. Myers, Jan. 24, 2002

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