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Enemy Troops Use Hit-and-Run Tactics in Afghanistan

By Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Nov. 27, 2002 – American service members and their coalition allies continue operations in Afghanistan.

U.S. camps have been targets of hit-and-run attacks from Taliban and al Qaeda sympathizers over the last week. U.S. personnel also have found arms caches and shut down a drug lab. There were no U.S. casualties.

The most serious incident over the last week was in the camp at Lwara Nov. 24. The forward-operating base came under rocket attack. Ten rockets impacted within the base, with nine of them armed with white phosphorus. The rockets started three fires in the camp, which personnel quickly put out.

U.S. personnel called in close-air support and the stand-by quick reaction force. An Air Force A-10 Thunderbolt dropped a 500-pound bomb on the suspected launch site.

Lwara came under attack again Nov. 27 as al Qaeda or Taliban sympathizers fired one 107-mm rocket at the base. Special Forces soldiers observed a vehicle with some dismounted personnel. The soldiers alerted air support, but the group left the area without any attacks.

On Nov. 26, Special Forces soldiers searching for a cache of arms near Jalalabad came under fire from five men armed with AK-47s. The unit returned fire, and the enemy broke contact. Unit personnel searched a building in the complex and came under sniper fire. The soldiers returned fire and wounded one man. Further search revealed the site was a drug lab.

U.S. personnel found a large weapons cache near Kohe Safi Nov. 25. U.S. officials paid $5,000 to the Afghan man who told them about the cache.

Near Bamian, U.S. soldiers found a significant arms stash that included heavy weapons and armored vehicles. U.S. reports indicate there were about 100 armed personnel in the area who fled after spotting the U.S. unit.

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